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CHAPTER NINE

METHOD IN APOLOGETICS

See also especially Department of Bible ... Ch. 11,
Mercy Outdistances Judgment
Ch. 12, Ch. 5
World Amiss
... Ch. 3, The Bright Light ... Ch. 7,
The  Word of Wisdom .. Ch. 4,
Messiah, Jesus Christ Ch. 7,
The Original and Eventual Magnificence
Epilogue

What is the Chaff to the Wheat  Chs.  3  and   4,

Bulletins 105, 107, 116, 118
Bulletins
  45, 53, 82, 83, 84, 93, 99, 100, 105, 106, 107, 116, 105, 107, 118, 121, 123

and

ONE ONLY BUT NOT ALONE,THE HOLY TRINITY

  Trinity Appendix

What is it ?

A name to the point of the presentation on this Web site, would be

ABC Apologetics,

standing for

An A-Presuppositional Bible Christian Apologetics.

Below there is provided a short, sharp review of main steps,  here chiefly for descriptive purposes.

 

1. In the procedure. no pre-suppositions are used,
with proof both from negative and positive standpoints.

2. Uninhibited use of logic, a major component.

3. Demonstration of Almighty God.

4. Demonstration of His exclusive written communication to man,
distinctive and delimited in the Bible.

5. Validation thereby of the testimony of reason - a null draw here
by reason would have invalidated procedure, but the discovery
methodically of the Bible in this process is a confirmation from reality,
and a triumph for the attestation of God's testimonial action.

6. Retrospective invalidation of other options confirms the functionality of the find.

7. Systematic considerations attest its unique cohesion and coherence, in so vast
a series of themes logically and historically sequential, and exhibits
internal validation.

8. The resolving power of the Bible for philosophical and theological/moral problems, including

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physical overview, long facing man and

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the needless and ruinous effect of importing dogma, doctrine or underlying ideas
from alien or supervening sources,

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its own correlations being sui generis,

marks intrinsic validation.

As soundly found, it is what it  ought to be

and does what it ought to do,

and is as sensitive to intrusion as is the body to poison.


This is to be expected when the Author in view is infinitely wise,
and so constitutes a double verification. The entire resolution of the basic issues of  predestination and freewill  *1  (with the reductionist errors of determinism and materialism,  and its correlatives) is but one result of using biblical specifications for ground and base. Nothing else solves this.

9. Its meeting of every assault over millenia without yielding in any category

is profound extrinsic verification,
and these results are to be found in areas and arenas
both theoretical and practical .

For example neither the god of Islam nor any other force or category, divine in aspiration or human, has been able to overthrow the returning Jew in his land, as occurred in 1948 and continues staggeringly this 2016, 68 years later. This is as so often predicted (cf. Luke 21:24), and in particular, by Jesus Christ (Luke 21:24 with Matthew 24:1ff.), as by Ezekiel, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah (cf. World Amiss ... Ch. 11).

Nor can  anything likewise remove the programmatic code majoring on DNA which invents mini-machinery as in protein folding, organic composures, brilliant mathematical subtleties and multi-applications for genes, whether simply coded or spatially indicative in placement, and proceeds by such declarations, devices and directions to make the most intricately sophisticated manufacturing plant on earth, not made by man, nor of man, but given like man, by what has the qualities so to compose. Small wonder babes from the womb are always a marvel.

Code-meaning programming like code-reception functionality (anyone can have a servant who does not work, or a program which finds no application) is implicit, the connotation of concepts and the denotation of devices being wedded. As the Bible says, God spoke and it was done. Speech is fundamentally the provision of meaning, and when functional, this in a context of comprehension by the receptor, or a programmatic equivalent. The symbols seize the meaning and convey it to the symbol referent. Meaning given in the sent code and meaning received in the performance of the same, are the same in a linguistically enclosed situation, run  by assignment of meaning and of means to execute it and the correlation of both with fixation of meaning, as when one holds such things, at the purely human level, in mind. These are mental and purposive operations.

But let us return to what other domains of words in the Bible tell us directly, and in the midst of zealous destructiveness, consider the Word of God-Israel phenomenon. In one sense it would seem so easy with the UN and the USA more recently, the Arab world in general and its more militant lands in particular exhibiting growing passion for Israel's reduction or ruin, though it is so small that it would seem, in normal terms, ready for both. But the word of God is ready for anything. As with DNA, so with Israel, even by little things do large lessons continue to be taught from the Bible, its word, ways and predictions.

Israel is little but its divinely appointed significance is large.

It has suffered richly for its national sins, but bullying as if the nations were somehow innocent by contrast, is not divinely desired*2 . There is an end, not unduly pretty but perfectly demanded by the ruthless and habitual ravaging of the land, as if the nations had made it!

Consider then.

Israel's destruction is menaced in the name of Allah by groups, nations, looming atomic hardware, merciless attacks, assaults on its morality in self-defence in such a situation, neighbourly contact from Putin on its Syrian border, increasingly vocal commands from the USA, none more obvious than those by Clinton in her former Secretary of State role.

Yet this deletion of returned Israel does not occur, not year by year, not decade by decade though much of this world would love to extinguish this national light to the accuracy of the word of God, be the circumstances what they will. That is one of the characteristics of God, that He has no equal. Whether in love or sacrifice or power or purity, in communication or event or their mirroring, the one of the other, there is no one else like that, nor any like the incarnate Jesus Christ, whose words are being fulfilled at a sharp rate even since my own teen-times. This is merely one simple illustration: God would chasten, disperse, restore and protect Israel and said so often (cf. Micah 2;  4:6-7:20, Jeremiah 33, Ezekiel 39:26-29, Matthew 24:1ff., Luke 21:24). He has done it all (cf. SMR Ch. 9 and in its overall presentation, with TMR).

Thus we find where other exponents of power fail to dent the word of God in any category, of force or thought or perspective, the word of the Bible itself by contrast is continually ratified  so that empirical verification confirms its validation at every level (cf. LIGHT DWELLS WITH THE LORD'S CHRIST WHO ANSWERS RIDDLES AND WHERE HE IS, DARKNESS DEPARTS

Bible or Blight, Christ or Confusion:
The Comprehensive Resolution of Man's Intractable Problems
is Found Only in the Bible, the Word of God

A Pair  of Volumes: Opus 128 and 129, of some 2.3 million words).

See also Deity and Design, Designation and Destiny, another multi-issue coverage that extends implications, applications and usage in concert. On the other hand, for a simplified schema, see SMR pp. 92ff., No. 27.

10. Scientific Method is fulfilled always in relation to the Bible; and not only clearly, but all the more when this method is openly applied without squirming and fallacious inversion. See Scientific Method.

Quality in the duly testing scientific method and the text of the Bible match perfectly in kind. On the reciprocal side,

Efforts to explain what is NOT found are no match, scientifically,
for explaining what IS found.

It is the cult of inversion. This is a usual and almost routine fallacy in the opposition. Stephen Gould's Wonderful Life is an excellent example of this (esp. pp. 99ff., 214-239, 272ff.);  and of this fault and failing  he was at least  partly aware. See The gods of naturalism have no go!

11. The fact that many scientists, and the dominant nature myth do not follow scientific method, in this religious phase and its correlatives, is further explained, the underlying REASON for this phenomenon,  in terms of biblical perspective, thus covering not only the data in the assault, but the mind set of the assailants.

The recent case of Michael Denton's ideas in his second volume on the continuing crisis in evolution, is given attention in Ch. 3 above. In general, such attempts at outsourcing creation - as by the popular 'aliens' as source of the universe, or by some floating idea, and all such unsupported suppositions and irrelevant bypasses, which simply beg the question,

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do not constitute science,

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which is more interested in explaining what is found

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rather than interpreting what is not found.

Hence the normal respectability of scientific method. Keep the name but change the content of this method, and it no longer has its talent or site. In its sphere, it can serve well.

That however is lost in the suppositional fixed focus which is more a treatise on discoveries not made, conditions not found, systems not viewed and  what would happen in a different universe with different properties, powers and support (cf. here also, Deity and Design, Designation and Destiny).

Far less do such suppositions provide a logical answer to the totality of the issue: origins. It is not unlike a man claiming billionaire status, but who in crisis of life, never manages to find even one million, or thousand, but writhes in explanations, the only thing verified being that the power is not there while the talk is. Creating without cause is not germane to the issue, which is serious in kind, and even trouble, that too, has its cause*2A. This world has both cause and trouble, each with grounds aplenty. Its trouble is not to find what the trouble is, but its continuance in causing it.

If it were to look to its cause,  to its Rock, who does not need to come from nothing because He is always there, it would find both its basis and its remedy. Logic suffers no other, prophecy knows no other option, Christ has no comparison, His words without competition objectively in power, the Bible the validation, the data the verification, the applications the concatenation.

As ABC Apologetics shows, for one, in the word of God which it exposes to be the Bible,  it is mankind who in general and with morbid animosity, with callow indifference or devious dispositions is not willing, though many are those within it, but not of it, who find both their God and their Lord, their originator, Creator and Saviour in Jesus Christ.

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Like the DNA for generation,

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He is found to be, and confirmed as God on site and incarnate, for regeneration.

For this race, the former was used to make it;
and for this same, fallen race, the latter is needed to restore it.

In fact, just as at the first of creation, "God said" and that DNA in linguistic terms in fact reflects building instructions for new generations of mankind,  in their setting, even direct orders in a miniaturised housing marvel as a model, even inside a single cell, billions of times over, is the most amazing sheer grandeur of expression and precise confirmation: so all His other words have intensive effectuality.

Again, in terms of logical structure, it is of great importance to realise in this ABC Apologetics method, that the FIRST step as in SMR Ch. 1 *3 and TMR, is to prove the reality of God and the exclusivistic expression of His written word to mankind as the Bible, so allowing reason to depict its site, and observation to attest its quality. As to the challenging theme of predestination, foreknowledge, freewill,  responsibility, freedom, duty and the like, this represented a topic requiring relevant biblical propositions to be found,  reliably from the word of God; and these to be compounded in a solution in this field, despite all the rocky accidents of philosophy in this realm, thus producing two more positive results. Firstly, first in the now published thesis, Predestination and Freewill, and then in the other six volumes on this series of topics related to this and its outcomes, presented in this site:

1) there is found not only the only solution to  all the empirical elements and systematic elements in mutual relationship, but

2) what necessarily must be so.

This is an additional and noteworthy confirmation,  verification and magnification of the source, scope and majesty of the Bible: that it presents all that is needed to solve all the issues involved. Work to exhibit this and meet any possible cavils, assaults and so forth, has been done and appears in the additional 6 volumes now made available, together with the original thesis (see Predestination  HEPTAD). While this area of investigation is merely one of the many examined (LIGHT DWELLS WITH THE LORD'S CHRIST, Who Answers Riddles and Where He is, Darkness Departs), it is an important one and its exhibition in this century is adding to the testimony of truth BASED on the Bible with unique and open  face to man, from it. It is muddle and indefinite confusion, clangour and clash or else trial of and triumph in the one source: the word of God written, the Bible.

Thus here the discovery of the Bible as one follows the search for the word of God as in SMR, validates the search. The criteria in searching logically, provide the triumph of finding what uniquely meets the case. It is in one respect similar to looking for oil. You have certain geological criteria, and following them you (sometimes) find it. In the case of the Bible, you have unique logical criteria with one decisive outcome, and this provides one unique result, which works in all departments over thousands, including the removal of mud and miasma from the thoiught of man when followed rigorously.

if it had not been there, no answer would be the result, and muddle the net continuation for philosophy; but since it is there, like space, there, this IS the verified and validated answer. What had to be, is, and reason is both operative and effectual as a human gift in its place. Indeed, its legal statutes and directives, inbuilt or overall, govern assignable features of the universe, allowing statable laws to be exposed when sought assiduously.

So again the application upon investigation of what is written in the Bible verifies what is thus found, in its quality as in its coherence of word with deed in other fields.

Such is this method of Biblical Christian Apologetics (ABC Apologetics)
which electronically originated on this site (1996),
as earlier in print, in SMR (1992,1997, a work of some 900,000 words)
and its preliminary preparations,
such as my Th.D. thesis, 1978, of around 150,000 words.

This is an heuristic method, trying logic out, not assuming it, and registering,
relaying and completing the findings and implications. In this test, it is a matter of TEST at all points, with discovery of positive test results at all kinds of points, confirming the logic we use in its results on trial in this case, and hence confirming not only the task of the apologetic method here employed, but the validity of what we use so freely and naturally, and for which we are so well fitted, even to the point of writing text books on the subject: namely, logic. Further issues in this field are addressed in Predestination and Freewill, Section IV.

See on this the pursuit of I Thessalonians 5:21: "Test all things; hold fast to what is good," bold added.

 

Let us return, however, to our sequence. Thus after this set of initial searches and reviews, expressed  in numbers of fashions in various contexts for variety, the next steps involve in emphasis, validation, verification; and so, the evidential resource can be evaluated. At to this verification phase, it is not now a matter of proving the signified Lord, book and word, in this setting without rational competition, but of attesting its fit. First it is shown up; then it is hosed down, that is even more closely examined, and this in a plethora of points, for quality, majesty of stature and aspects of divine attestation. At this level,  it is a relatively simple matter of confirming what is already presented with proof as to its status. It simply now needs testing, and this is and has been done to the uttermost.

Verification is a relatively easy task, though its aspects are many (cf. the 243 volumes in this present set, "In Praise of Christ Jesus"), when you have as here a winning case, with no bubbles or troubles, the validation being simply a matter of FINDING what the proof implies MUST exist. What is that ? It is the Bible which has the criteria satisfied as shown in the initial proof, concerning God as speaker. What reason demanded, God has supplied.

It is there testable, regal and relentless, speaking to man over millenia, often assailed, but none doing so, has ever prevailed.

It is also the Lord Himself as Christ Jesus, as found in the survey of the testimony concerning Him. This has never wavered, been falsified or rationally disposed of, but expresses through His Person, and in person, the ways of God, His power and His nature, His wisdom and His inexhaustible capacity (cf. SMR Ch. 5, and The Magnificence of the Messiah, for example)..

The matter is therefore in no way conditional on anything. It avoided presuppositions at the first, and  unrealistic demands at the last. The proof moves like clockwork, and the obvious is shown to be so. Proved from the first, the matter is validated and verified to the last. The procedure allows for an orchestra of methods of Christian apologetics, not to extend this one, but as options available so that if you follow the one, or the other, you come to the same result, this present one with the desired advantages of direct action without presupposition. Reason is put on trial and succeeds.

Indeed, in any method, if there IS no truth as a supposition, implicit or explicit in the model,  then it cannot be articulated by the assailant favouring such a model; for since opn such a basis, it is not there, this constitutes a capitulation in advance. You cannot rationally use what your model excludes. This eliminates the mansions of negativity; but the suburbs of truth have many ways of being recognised when the method is not self-contradictory.

Great is the pity for those who want to set up unfounded and fallacious kingdoms, by whatever means, their eyes closed by custom, convenience, fear, inner guilt, party spirit or whatever other thing achieves the heart of their desire. As Isaiah 44:15 puts it, "he makes a god and worships it." Whether such gods be made up of dreams, begging the question instead of proof, drugged reactions, turpid thought, turgid desire or any other substitute for truth, it is all one in the end. Invention is a gift, man's inventiveness an example; underlying reality however, is not part of it. It is there already.

The mercy of the Gospel still continues like a brilliant waterfall -  arresting like Niagara, with its mist and rainbow from the massive marvels of the very obvious waterfall - and that bow, it is not for runaway cults, but for a testimony of no more flood: only fire (II Peter 3).

 

Notes

*1

See Index. See also


Christ's Ineffable Peace Ch.2

with such works as Possess Your Possessions Vol. 6, Ch.2,

Repent or Perish Ch. 7,

Department of Bible ... Vol. 11, Ch. 21. and

in this present volume, Chs.  1,     , and Ch. 12.

 

*2

See the following on the  divine distaste for bullying and presumption, for when He acts as Lord in discipline, that is one thing. When others take over as if divine, that is another, and the fact being distorted, their follies in the end are all aborted:

 Isaiah 51:21-23, 49:25-26, Ezekiel 39:1-8, Micah 7:8-17.

 

*2A

On the fallacy of trying to operate in isolation from causality, see SMR Ch. 5, Predestination and Freewill Section 4, for example.

 

*3

Ch. 1 SMR gives initial proof, and further special elements of interest are provided in this phase 1 sphere in Chs. 3, 5, and Predestination and Freewill Section 4.

Ch. 2 SMR is a specialised area of verification and as such is updated in such sites as The gods of naturalism have no go! a work of some millions of words.

Ch. 4 SMR is verification in  selected areas of specialty, such as psychology and sociology. Ch. 6 is verification which like Predestination and Freewill
overflows into many areas, solving problems as light does to the faint figures of darkness, one of the testimonies of truth, this resolution being gained from the specifications in the Bible (see further  7 volume sub-set on this arena ).

Chs. 8-9 SMR are specific areas of verification, with special stringencies attached, dealing significantly with prophecy, history, past and present, natural and supernatural and the criteria of both. Ch. 10 is confirmation by applying biblical parameters and perspectives for comparison with what does not work logically, in various human religions. Not only must what is of God stand, and be demonstrable, but what is not of this kind should exhibit ineffaceable flaws. This logical need is covered in this Chapter as in others areas to be  noted shortly.


The 5 major Appendices SMR cover special areas of verification with clarification where the empirical and the confirmation of logic apply.

Often at this same level, That Magnificent Rock (TMR) is a volume of broad-ranging examination of foundations and ramifications, written during the first exposure of this SMR demonstration at University level.

In Search there are exposed a substantial number of sub-sets and specialised areas of research, verification and equally confirmation. These are made as free and forcible as the occasion warrants, and the aim, involving a carefully composed coverage in multiplied fields, requires. Demonstration, verification and confirmation, validation, are continual considerations, including the areas of religions as such, and various types of ramifications for the sake of thoroughness.

The 243 volume  totality or 239 after the primary 4, in some ways is like a post-doctoral coverage and application  to extend, clarify and explore an alliance of elements at more breadth, in more detail and more history and developments, though it is not at all written with academic results in mind, except this. It is to debunk without deviation, the foolish and exhibit the truth of the testimonies of the Lord, from  varied angles within the major method, or as supplements as the case may be. The principal procedures remain. It does this as this world alas descends into depths from which many will never return.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ according to the Bible remains a cutting-edge as sharp today as ever, for the cutting away of the chains that conquer and confine (cf. Isaiah 61), while providing the way to the life that is not only lovely but eternal (cf. Titus 1:1ff.).

It is that same one indicated from the first (Genesis 3:15) and delighted in to the last (cf. II Timothy 1:12, 4:3-8). In turn, the giving of a reason for the faith (I Peter 3:15, cf. II Corinthians 10:5) being a service ready for use as required, has its place. The way to this life, provided in no small  detail at various times in one integral whole, prophetically, from some 3000 years ago, remains operational. It is reached through the Messiah (cf. John 14:6),sent by His Father,  travailing with the payment for sin (cf. Isaiah 50-55), through death as planned (cf. Psalm 22), so providing free access through faith in Him to the God of creation and redemption, remedy and multiplied testimony, resurrected in body as He had resurrected others and healed multitudes, so glorified on earth, though rejected by envy, hatred and violent rebellion, then as by many now.

It is He who lives, was dead and lives for ever (Revelation 1:18), who remains with His Gospel operational, unchangeable (cf. Galatians 1), that preached by the apostles and Paul, welcomed to their midst. It is testable in the heart also, until He comes (cf. Acts 1:7, I Corinthians 15, I Thessalonians 3:13, Matthew 24) in its own terms, requiring neither update nor refinement from the God who knows the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10). Premises, promises and performance match like a perfect tartan, alive with its source.