Cornelius “One Liner” Van Til, Again

In October, I posted a handful of Van Til “one liners” from his Introduction to Systematic Theology. This month I am posting another handful from his Christian Apologetics.

“[S]ystematic theology . . . takes all the truths brought to light from Scripture by the biblical studies and forms them into one organic whole” (21).

“The unity and the diversity in God are equally basic and mutually dependent upon one another” (25).

“No creature can detract from his [God] glory; all creatures, willingly or unwillingly add to his glory” (28).

“God is absolute” (29).

“He [God] is autonomous” (29).

“The diversity and the unity in the Godhead are therefore equally ultimate; they are exhaustively correlative to one another and not correlative to anything else” (29).

“The most basic distinction of Christianity is that of God’s being as self-contained, and created being as dependent upon him” (30).

“Christianity is committed for better or for worse to a two-layer theory of reality or being” (31).

“Truth out of all relationship to any mind is a pure meaningless abstraction” (34).

“The idea of disinterested or neutral knowledge is out of accord with the basic ideas of Christianity” (40).

“Christ came to bring man back to God” (46).

“In Christ man realizes that he is a creature of God and that he should not seek underived comprehensive knowledge” (48).

“Christ is our wisdom” (48).

“What Christ did while he was on earth is only a beginning of his work” (51).

“Sin being what it is we may be certain that all our preaching and all our reasoning with men will be in vain unless God brings men through it to himself” (53).

“Belief in the promises of God with respect to our eternal salvation is meaningless unless God controls the future” (53).

“Scripture gives definite information of a most fundamental character about all the facts and principles with which philosophy and science deal” (61).

“They [General and Special Revelation] are aspects of one general philosophy of history” (66).

“It was in the mother promise that God gave the answer to nature’s cry (Gen. 3:15)” (75).

“At every stage in history God’s revelation in nature is sufficient for the purpose it was meant to serve, that of being the playground for the process of differentiation between those who would and those who would not serve God” (75-76).

“Created man may see clearly what is revealed clearly even if he cannot see exhaustively” (77).

“Nature can and does reveal nothing but the one comprehensive plan of God” (78).

“No one can become a theist unless he becomes a Christian” (79).

“Any god that is not the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is not God but an idol” (79).

“Hodge, following the lead of Calvin, stressed the fact that the whole set of sinful man needs to be renewed by the power of the Holy Spirit” (94).

“For Adam in paradise, God-consciousness could not come in at the end of a syllogistic process of reasoning” (115).

“Roman Catholic notion of authority seems at first sight to be very absolute–in fact even more absolute than that of Protestantism–it is in reality not absolute at all. Its idea of autonomy wins out in every case. And so it comes to pass that the Roman Catholic doctrines of faith are in every instance adjusted to the idea of human autonomy” (181).

“It follows that on the question of Scripture, as on every other question, the only possible way for the Christian to reason with the non-believer is by way of presupposition” (197).

All quotes from Christian Apologetics (P&R Publishing, 2003), edited by William Edgar.