The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” (Psalm 14:1)
The Bible presupposes God. Pretty basic. It makes absolute truth claims without concern if the reader believes it or not. God created all things, including us (Gen.1). He created, from nothing, all that is in the world. We are His creation and He is the Creator. Therefore, as the triune, eternal God created, his temporal creation is thus dependent on and derived from Him. This means the truth of who we (His temporal creation) are and how and what we know are dependent and derived from Him (the triune, Eternal God)
“Christian-theism says that there are two levels of thought, the absolute and the derivative. Christian theism says that there are two levels of interpreters, God who interprets absolutely and man who must be re-interpreters of God’s interpretation. Christian-theism says that human thought is therefore analogical of God’s thought” (Van Til, The Defense of the Faith,70).
In Genesis 3 we see creation subjected to the curse of sin. Adam and Eve “fell from their original righteousness and communion with God, and so became dead in sin, and wholly defiled in all the parts and faculties of soul and body” (WCF 6.2). Now in a fallen world, instead of “re-interpreting” God’s interpretation, man seeks to construct his own interpretation and “thus tries to do the impossible with the result that self-frustration is written all over its efforts” (p. 72).
Fallen man has and continues to operate under a “false ideal of knowledge” (p. 36). K. Scott Oliphint states, “We sinfully and deceptively convince ourselves that what is actually true about the world is not true. We create a world of our own making where we are all gods. What we now seek to do and how we seek to live and think are set in polar opposition to the world as it actually is” (Covenantal Apologetics, 45).
Thus is the state of all who are in “in Adam.”
Romans 1:18-32 states,
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.”
Given that those “in Adam” know the True Triune God of the Bible (as they are made in His image) yet take this truth and suppress it forming idols in His stead, why would we then seek to provide evidences for the unbeliever as if the God who created all things needed the final clearance of His creation to validate His existence. But if we are not to provide evidence how shall we then give a defense of the hope that is within us?
Answering The Fool
Rather than me continuing this post with the reasons and biblical warrant for an apologetic that presupposes God, there is a documentary that was created recently for this very purpose, proven to be extremely helpful, biblical, and effective in putting the presuppositional apologetic into action. I have found the presuppositional (or covenantal) writings of Van Til, Bahnsen, Oliphint, etc. very helpful and edifying, but to turn around and apply it practically on the streets, at work, with our friends, on our outreaches, is another story.
Sye Ten Bruggencate has, in this documentary, taken this apologetic and given it feet in a way that has helped many, including me, tremendously. The documentary is called How to Answer the Fool and can be rented via Vimeo for $3.99 or purchased here or here along with a study guide. I had been following Sye’s ministry before this documentary, have been blessed by the resources on his website, and found this film on answering the fool to be a helpful overview of why the Bible demands this apologetic and how to practically put it into action, taking it to the streets. I highly recommend it. Check it out.