Presuppositional Apologetics (PA) is not that tough a concept to grasp, but it takes some helpful tips and practice before rookie “teachers” are able to transmit it to others. And transmit it they must since Christianity is under constant public attack by all (humanist-programmed) sectors, and God is constantly derided as a “cruel” myth. PA must be taught in bite-size steps to our children, too. Here are some of those worldview-enhancing stepping stones.
1. In friendly dialogue with an adult, I most often receive good chat-advancing responses whenever I draw the conversation around to the array of societal troubles infecting the land. (I know that some aspect of the chaos, even if unspoken, has left its mark on him!) After chatting and listening for a time, I then mention that when several personal trials came my way a few years ago, five key questions, fortunately, arose: Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? How do I get there? Each of them led me directly to God and Christ. (Something similar could be used by AV readers.) Interestingly, your friend’s “You mean you’re religious…you believe in God?” shows, among other things, how humanistically well-indoctrinated the U.S. has become. In any case, and however you choose to get there, “step one” means explaining your dependence on the resurrected Christ. His salvation, His Lordship, His commandments, His purpose for us, His having creating the universe out of nothing, makes it all about Him.
2. Your very much non-neutral friend/skeptic (Matt. 12:30; Rom. 1 and 3; Eph. 4:17–18) will likely state that “science and reason” are the basis for “doing life.” He’ll probably add, “You can’t prove God exists,” or ask, “Who created Him?” Listen politely as you wait to bring up your two most critical points: evolution and epistemology. In this debate both must be kept ever handy, just off-stage because they’ll be referred repeatedly.
Evolution: (Again, when doing PA, evolution must be kept close at hand in your mind since so much of what needs to be undone begins with the lie of evolution.) The two most generally accepted explanation/possibilities for existence are the “everything from nothing model” and the “everything from God” model. (By the way, your friend has been trained to think that science and evolution are nearly synonymous.) “Evolution” is life coming from nothing and turning into something that becomes what is defined as “life” which was triggered by chance plus accidental electrical and chemical events inside the (supposed) “post-Big Bang primordial slime.” Sillier still, evolution insists that “God-free” man’s thoughts are also meaningless accidents; random firings of nerve endings in his brain. That’s the P. T. Barnum-esque, human-gullibility-proving fairy tale your friend believes in despite how much he might try to soft peddle it. (The pro-evolution humanist has to wear his “man is just a God-free chemical accident” hat half the time, and his “we’re logical thinkers” the other half. It’s a cognitive nightmare!) Lots of wild guesses may also ensue at this point. (Aliens who “seeded” the planets is a popular option. But how did the aliens get here?) Allow him discussion room, but always bring him back to the only two historically-accepted possibilities: The true God or Darwin’s god of nothing plus chance. If he believes there’s “no creator,” check his theory on where the roughly 100 chemical elements came from.
As to where God came from, He’s the essential “uncaused cause,” the non-negotiable, ultimate terminal of philosophical regress. He “is” because of the utter “impossibility of the contrary.” (Why this is not circular reasoning in the usual sense will be covered later.) This may elicit pitying scoffs from your friend, but scoffs, not reasonable answers, are all he has. What is his response really telling you? The Bible, written by God via human hands, states that man at his core has hated and resisted God ever since Eden. In lusting to be free, he has tried, with help from Darwin et al., to define God away. This is so he can do his own thing with no guilt and (he hopes) with no eternal consequences. Ashes to ashes, etc. Scoffing, it seems, is at least better than nothing.
By now you should have him thinking. God, beyond dispute, and as we’ll see, “IS.” This fact, happily, rules out the defiant “need” for evolution or any other such fictitious escape routes.
3. Epistemology: Your friend now needs to get a grip on the following analogy and its extension: Well-built buildings stand on foundations of stone or concrete, not on sand. Ask him to hang on to that. Then courteously “remind” him (frankly, he’s likely never heard of it) that when friendly adversaries initiate a serious conversation, they first have the preliminary obligation (per intellectual integrity) to answer this challenge: Why is it a true assumption that our ability to communicate with each other (and even with ourselves) about anything is a rational and non-haphazard thing? Why is there an ultimate starting point for reasoning? By the way, this assignment/challenge also includes reminding him that there are “laws of logic.” These are universal, invariant rules governing human rationality and are used every time we think or talk about anything. More on the ultimate source of the laws of logic later.
Man’s need to identify the true foundation/justification for philosophically sound communication is critical. In “debate,” each side must account for the ultimate foundation he’s defending. (Humanists who depend on “science and reason” for their answers may get a bit uneasy at this point due to their persistence in pretending to trust exclusively in the “natural,” the “material,” the physical. I refer to their theorized “rule” that truth about anything comes only when things that exist physically (i.e., extended in space) can be tested empirically in a lab. But how then can they take this non-physical “rule” (opinion) about lab testing and test it in a lab? They can’t. It’s self-contradictory. For them, if something can’t be measured in a lab, they don’t like to talk about it. The ten-dollar word for this exercise in philosophy is epistemology; the study of knowledge, or more simply, “how we know—forever and indisputably—what we know.” Its findings provide “the starting point for reasoning.” This challenge has given rise, believe it or not, to many of man’s most intense debates over the centuries. But it’s a stubborn man who won’t see how simple it all is. Presuppositional Apologetics does the job.
This is part one of “Eviscerate Evolution Via Evangelism.” Look for part two next Wednesday.