Answering Objections to Deductive Theology

Gordon H. Clark’s book Three Types of Religious Philosophy is a powerful little work that dismantles non-biblical epistemologies. Clark proposes that deductive Scriptural reasoning is the only means we have of knowing truth. He also addresses criticisms raised by opponents of clarkbookScripturalism/Revelational Deductivism. What follows is a short excerpt in which Clark responds to a popular objection that confuses Christian rationalism/Scripturalism with rationalism (as espoused by men like St. Anselm, Spinoza, etc).

It is said, if the mind is competent, time and experience will wolve all problems, and no revelation will be necessary.

[ . . . ]

The expressed conclusion is, No revelation is needed [ . . . ]

But no man has sufficient time to solve all problems; even on optimistic assumptions it is not likely that any man has sufficient experience; and it is surely the case that some men are not very intelligent. For these reasons it does not follow that no revelation is needed. [ . . . ]

Aside from this practical consideration, the main point is the objection’s irrelevancy to [Scripturalism]. The objection is irrelevant because it is a tautology. Its premise is: “If the mind is competent….” One must always remember that competent means without revelation. But it is mere tautology to say that if the mind needs no revelation, it needs no revelation.

[ . . . ]

[Scripturalism] does not assert man’s inability to construct valid syllogisms. It most assuredly asserts man’s inability to deduce theological content from non-revelational material. Therefore the [objection] is without force.

Solus Christus!

-h.

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