Thoughts on the Way Home

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Myth of Neutrality

Greg Bahnsen, in the quote listed below, points out a basic but much neglected truth: There is no such thing as neutral reasoning. The context of this quote is a debate concerning Scripture's inerrancy (i.e. Scripture is free from all falsehood or mistake).

Finally, we know that presuppositionless impartiality and neutral reasoning are impossible and undesirable because God's word teaches that (1) all men know God, even if suppressing the truth (Romans 1); (2) there are two basic philosophic and presuppositional outlooks -- one after worldly tradition, the other after Christ (Colossians 2); (3) thus there is a knowledge falsely so-called that errs according to the faith (I Timothy 6) and a genuine knowledge based on repentant faith (2 Timothy 2); consequently, (4) some men (unbelievers) are "enemies in their minds" (Romans 8) while others (believers) are "renewed in Knowledge" (Colossians 3), and characteristic of these two mindsets is the fact that the former cannot be subject to God's Word (Romans 8) but sees it as utter foolishness (1 Corinthians 1), while the latter seeks to bring every thought captive in the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10) in whom is found all the treasures...(sic) beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1). This mindset submits to Christ's word, just as the wise man builds his house upon a rock (Matthew 7); and it views the alleged foolishness of preaching as indeed the wisdom and power of God (1 Corinthians 1). Presuppositionless neutrality is both impossible (epistemologically) and disobedient (morally); Christ says that a man is either WITH him or AGAINST him (Matthew 12:30), for "no man can serve two masters" (Matthew 6:24). Our EVERY thought (even apologetical reasoning about inerrancy) must be made captive to Christ's all-encompassing Lordship (2 Corinthians 10:5; 1 Peter 3:15; Matthew 22:37).

Taken from Inductivism, Innerancy, and Presuppositionalism