Home > Apologetics, Christianity, Epistemology, Philosophy, Quotations, Theology > John Warwick Montgomery on Presuppositionalism as Epistemology

John Warwick Montgomery on Presuppositionalism as Epistemology

 

2.18: All arguments begin with presuppositions; thus, we are told by influential orthodox Protestant theologians, Christians have every right to start from the presupposition that God has revealed himself in Holy Scripture.
2.1801: Advocates of “orthodox presuppositionalism” go on to affirm that any attempt to justify the Christian world-view makes the presuppositions of one’s epistemology more fundamental than one Christian’s beliefs, thus idolatrously demeaning God.
2.181: Kant’s demonstrations that all arguments begin with presuppositions is eminently sound; but from this it does not follow that I can sensibly begin to construct a world-view from any presupposition whatever.
2.1811: If the latter were the case, then, as readily as one man took to his bosom an unjustified Christian presupposition, I could take to mine the aprioristic belief in a cheese0impregnated Deity with whom communion is possible through the medium of the toasted-cheese sandwich.
2.182: Religious presuppositions must be tested for truth-value from without; otherwise one claim has as much right to acceptance as a claim mutually incompatible with it.
2.1821: But as soon as one begins to test religious “presuppositions” for truth-value, these religious tenets lose absolute presuppositional value.
2.18211: It is nonetheless legitimate to speak of “the presuppositions of one’s systematic theology” (meaning the starting-points for one’s doctrinal system) as long as one recognizes that these “presuppositions” still require justification over against other possible starting-points for theologizing.
2.183: The truth-testing of religious first-principles does not lower their value or depreciate the Deity on whom they center.
2.1831: To use a road map to ensure that one reaches the king’s palace instead of a garbage dump does not give the king a status below the road map.
2.1832: What would doubtless offend the monarch is an attitude of indifference in the quest: a lack of concern to distinguish his palace from the garbage dump.
2.1833: It is a simple “category mistake” (in Ryle’s sense) to make invidious comparisons of value between substantive beliefs and the epistemological means by which those beliefs are verified; truth-tests and religious tenets have different functions; and the use of the former, instead of diminishing the value of the latter, actually enhances them.
2.1834: Care must be taken, therefore, not to confuse one’s starting-point for systematic theology (e.g., the God who reveals himself in Scripture) with one’s epistemological means of verifying that starting-point (e.g., Carnell’s employment of Brightman’s systematic consistency motif).

 

Advertisements
  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: