Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we bessech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dr. Gordon H. Clark: Everyone Begins with Assumptions

All arguments seem doubtful. And what is worse, as the student makes his way through the mazes of speculation, he begins to see that even though some sequences of thought are logically valid, they all depend on original assumptions.  --  Dr. Gordon H. Clark

Of course, the proofs of God’s existence are not the only arguments that upon examination disclose suspicious intricacies. All philosophy is intricate. Behaviorism in psychology, utilitarianism in ethics, the Newtonian law of gravitation, and the Marxian interpretation of history are all defended by elaborate and plausible arguments. When first read, they seem unanswerable. But minds as keen as Hume’s have attacked these positions very effectively. Theism is not the only philosophy that faces difficulties. All arguments seem doubtful. And what is worse, as the student makes his way through the mazes of speculation, he begins to see that even though some sequences of thought are logically valid, they all depend on original assumptions. Just as the theorems of geometry are deduced from the axioms, so the conclusions of behaviorism are deduced from the assumption that mind is a physiological process, utilitarianism from the assumption that pleasure is the good, and gravitation from a theory of space and time. But what about these assumptions or axioms? Can they be proved? It would seem that they cannot, for they are the starting points of an argument, and if the argument starts with them, there is no preceding argumentation. Accordingly, after the humanist or theist has worked out a consistent system by arranging all his propositions as theorems in a series of valid demonstrations, how is either of them to persuade the other to accept his unproved axioms? And the question is all the more perplexing when it is suspected that the axioms were chosen for the express purpose of deducing precisely these conclusions.

Gordon H. Clark (2014-06-05T04:00:00+00:00). A Christian View of Men and Things (Kindle Locations 336-347). The Trinity Foundation. Kindle Edition.

See also:  A Christian View of Men and Things.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Quote of the Day: J. H. Thornwell: Insulting God

In conformity with this reasoning, no operations of the Spirit can be justly denominated grace which leave the decision of his destiny in the hands of the sinner.  The agency of God may be carried so far as to make men able to stand, yet, if it depends upon themselves to stand or fall, to use or reject the assistance which is given, there is nothing in such a state to distinguish it from the grossest legalism.  The Spirit is evidently the servant, not the master, of the man; grace obeys but does not reign.  All such schemes, whatever honor they may pretend to ascribe to the Holy Ghost, are insulting to God, since they lay a foundation for boasting in the creature.

J. H. Thornwell.  Sacramental Sorcery:  The Invalidity of Roman Catholic Baptism.  Reprint. (Unicoi:  Trinity Foundation, 2006). P. 128.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Kuyper's Stone Lectures at Old Princeton

I found the following photocopy version of the six lectures Abraham Kuyper gave at the Old Princeton seminary.  This is where Kuyper's doctrine of common grace was first introduced to the seminary.  I would contend that this was the beginning point here an incipient liberalism led the seminary away from the Westminster Standards and into liberalism.  Common grace is not mentioned in any of the Reformed confessions except the Canons of Dort and here it refers to the Arminian doctrine of common grace and is a negative assessment.

A similar situation soon developed at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia in the 1940s when Cornelius Van Til introduced Kuyper's views on common grace.  Van Til's neo-orthodoxy and theology of Scripture as apparently contradictory in all that it teaches has led to the Federal Vision heresy and to theonomy.

You can read Kuyper's Stone Lectures here:   Stone Lectures.

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