Why I Believe in God: Childhood

Why I Believe in God: Childhood

(This is part three of an essay by Christian apologist Cornelius Van Til.
Click here for part one.)

To go on, then, I can recall playing as a child in a sandbox built into a corner of the hay-barn. From the hay-barn I would go through the cow-barn to the house. Built into the hay- barn too, but with doors opening into the cow-barn, was a bed for the working-man. How badly I wanted permission to sleep in that bed for a night! Permission was finally given. Freud was still utterly unknown to me, but I had heard about ghosts and “forerunners of death.” That night I heard the cows jingle their chains. I knew there were cows and that they did a lot of jingling with their chains, but after a while I was not quite certain that it was only the cows that made all the noises I heard. Wasn’t there someone walking down the aisle back of the cows, and wasn’t he approaching my bed? Already I had been taught to say my evening prayers. Some of the words of that prayer were to this effect: “Lord, convert me, that I may be converted.” Unmindful of the paradox, I prayed that prayer that night as I had never prayed before.

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Why I Believe in God: The “Accident of Birth”

Why I Believe in God: The “Accident of Birth”

(This is part two of an essay by Christian apologist Cornelius Van Til. Click here for part one.)

We are frequently told that much in our life depends on “the accident of birth”. In ancient time some men were said to spring full-grown from the foreheads of the gods. That, at any rate, is not true today. Yet I understand the next best thing happened to you. You were born, I am told, in Washington, D.C., under the shadow of the White House. Well, I was born in a little thatched roof house with a cow barn attached, in Holland. You wore “silver slippers” and I wore wooden shoes.

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Why I Believe in God

Why I Believe in God

(This is the first of a seven part series by Christian apologist Cornelius Van Til. In this essay, Van Til sets the transcendental method of apologetics – commonly known as presuppositionalism – in an easy to read, conversational format. The essay was original published as a pamphlet, the citation information is: Van Til, Cornelius. Why I Believe in God. Philadelphia: Committe on Christian Education, Orthodox Presbyterian Church, n.d.)

You have noticed, haven’t you, that in recent times certain scientists like Dr. James Jeans and Sir Arthur Eddington, as well as some outstanding philosophers like Dr. C.E.M. Joad, have had a good deal to say about religion and God? Scientists Jeans and Eddington are ready to admit that there may be something to the claims of men who say they have had an experience of God, while Philosopher Joad says that the “obtrusiveness of evil” has virtually compelled him to look into the argument for God’s existence afresh. Much like modernist theologian Dr. Reinhold Niebuhr who talks about original sin, Philosopher Joad speaks about evil as being ineradicable from the human mind.

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Wide Margin GNT Introduction

Wide Margin GNT Introduction

(This is the introduction to the newly released Wide Margin Greek New Testament, available here)

The impetus for this project came when I, as a poor seminary student, wanted to be able to write in my Greek New Testament, yet did not want to write in the copies I owned because they were too expensive and had little to no room in which to write because of the marginalia and apparatus. There was a very limited selection of wide margin GNTs available on the market, but all considerably out of the budget of a seminary student. Therefore, I set about the task to make my own and this is the result: a GNT with 2” outside margins, 1” inside margins, and 1.5 line spacing, printed on 90 GSM paper.

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8 Reasons to Use a Fountain Pen

8 Reasons to Use a Fountain Pen

Six years ago, when I matriculated into Grove City College, I took all my notes by hand with a blue Pentel 0.5mm twist-erase mechanical pencil. I wrote in small sloppy print, but it was legible. I soon found that taking notes that way was not enjoyable and it was a pain to go back and reread my notes. So I did what any self-respecting millennial would do – I began taking notes on my computer for three years. However, spring semester senior year I went back to taking notes by hand for a very important reason: the Christmas before the semester started I asked for a fountain pen and ink because I had been convinced that handwriting my notes was better for my retention. I chose to write with a fountain pen mainly for two reasons, it looked cool and I found the rich saturated color of the ink very appealing. I am now in my third year of seminary and continue to use a fountain pen for all my note taking – tens of hours every week and hundreds of hours every year. Below are eight reasons why I continue to use a fountain pen and encourage others to consider it.

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The Millennium: Part 8

The Millennium: Part 8

(Part 1)

“and when the thousand years were completed, Satan will be loosed from his prison” (Καὶ ὅταν τελεσθῇ τὰ χίλια ἔτη, λυθήσεται ὁ σατανᾶς ἐκ τῆς φυλακῆς αὐτοῦ). Verse 7 continues the progression of John’s narrative and takes place after verses 1-6. After the church age, Satan will be released from his prison to engage in a time of heightened spiritual warfare against Christ and His people. Just as his binding was the result of the authority of Christ who holds the keys, so he does not escape from prison and so release himself but is let out by Christ and is still under His sovereign hand.

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The Millennium: Part 7

The Millennium: Part 7

(Part 1)

“blessed and holy is the one having a share in the first resurrection, over these the second death does not have power, but they will be priests of God and of the Messiah and they will reign with Him a thousand years” μακάριος καὶ ἅγιος ὁ ἔχων μέρος ἐν τῇ ἀναστάσει τῇ πρώτῃ· ἐπὶ τούτων ὁ δεύτερος θάνατος οὐκ ἔχει ἐξουσίαν, ἀλλ᾽ ἔσονται ἱερεῖς τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ βασιλεύσουσιν μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ [τὰ] χίλια ἔτη). Verse 6 is an interpretation of the first resurrection and constitutes the main point of verses 1-6. John’s assertion that the saints are blessed is grounded in three realities: the second death has no power over them, they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with Christ for a thousand years. This is the fifth of seven benedictions in the book of Revelation (1:3, 14:13, 16:15, 19:19, 20:6, 22:7, 22:14), and contains close parallels with 2:10-11 and 14:13.

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