Is this the least likely book to be read on holiday this year? The thought came to mind whilst scanning the biography section looking for holiday reading to promote. Who wants to read about Van Til? The denseness of his own prose style does not somehow recommend him as an interesting subject for being written about. But in a moment of pity for the underdog, I picked it up there and then and started reading...and I found it hard to stop! One man's meat is another man's poison. First, I found it very informative about the context to Van Til's life. I feel I can now appreciate better the layout of the American evangelical/reformed/fundamentalist scene of the 20th century. Second, his approach to apologetics is noteworthy. The Dutch Reformed heritage was strongly influential on him, not unsurprising as he was born in Holland, and he looked back to Kuyper and Bavinck. So he determined to defend reformed truths by an unvarying method, which he judged to be itself wholly reformed - presuppositional apologetics. Thus 'worldview must be set against worldview', no one is neutral in relation to the truth, let alone autonomous in being able to judge what it is. We must confess God's word, not argue it. I think he has been derided for this 'counsel of despair' approach, but it impressed me, and he successfully exposed the errors of Karl Barth with it.
For more formal blurb on the book, which costs £14.95, go to this link to the publisher's website:
And to think that Lorna has been giving out the impression that I have turned into a mere software developer!