Visit the multimedia page to listen to a 5 part audio review of this exchange by Chris Bolt of "Choosing Hats."
Here is the unedited transcript of the exchange I had with Justin Schieber on his "Yahweh or Myweh" podcast on July 11, 2011. Justin chose to post an edited version of our discussion. His 'explanation' was that he had: "trimmed down certain areas/rabbit trails so that it ran more smoothly for the sake of the listeners' sanity." Clearly the transcript shows that he had other motives. In total, over 5 minutes, or one tenth of the program, was intitially edited out. Thankfully I had my own recorder running and upon discovering the deception, informed Justin that his hand was caught in the cookie jar. 6 days after the exchange Justin finally posted the original version, with no apologies for his actions. I am not saying that people should not debate Justin in the future, but am giving fair warning to record everything, and to have an agreement in place that no edits be made on the final product. The words and pauses that Justin edited out are in red and I have also included the the odd timestamp from the unedited, and edited programs. Thanks so much to those who helped with the transcription, you know who you are :-)
(The original edited audio that Justin uploaded can be found at the bottom of this page).
Justin: Hello and welcome to another episode of Yahweh or Myweh. My name is Justin Schieber, and today I'm interviewing Sye Ten Bruggencate. Sye is a presuppositionalist Christian apologist who runs the website proofthatgodexists.org. He has taken part in countless debates on the existence of the Christian God on several public forums, most notably the podcasts "Unbelievable?" with Justin Brierley of Premiere Christian radio.
Our conversation today will mostly center around a talk that I gave that was critical of the presuppositional approach and it can be found in our last episodes. If you have not heard that just yet, I urge you to give that a listen first, to know, provide some context for the conversation today. So after I uploaded that talk that I gave a while back I got a hold of Sye and I asked him if he thought my representation of the presuppositional position and the argumentation they employ was a fair one and he returned saying that my description of the argument is about 75% accurate, and my refutation was maybe 10 (percent) that being generous. So, you know, of course I was pretty disappointed by the percentage he attributed to the potency of my refutations, but you know, luckily he graciously offered to come on the show and give some details to illuminate why my refutations were inadequate. So, without further ado, Sye, thanks for agreeing to have this conversation today.
Sye: My pleasure Justin.
Justin: Ya um, so I guess today I guess we might as well just start off, ah why don't you start off by telling us, you know, we'll just begin with one of the places you found that ah, you know, where I kinda revealed my ignorance of the presuppositional method.
Sye: Ya, I was hoping you would give some review of my debates with Paul first because he seems to think he's done really well in those debates and...
Justin: Oh (laughs)
Sye: I don't know I think that you were saying that you didn't think that he was forthright and hopefully this exchange will be a little bit different, but um, if you don't want to, that's fine too, we can just get into this, but um, I was wondering if you could give a bit of a review of them.
Justin: Well, I ah, I've heard the first 2 and I've I've I've listened to the most recent one but I don't really remember enough to make specific points but um, ya, no I, there's just fundamental differences that I have with Paul about particular things, um, so ya.
Unedited 2:50 Edited 1:50
Sye: Cool. I just want to explore what those differences are because atheists...
Sye: ... do come from different angles, and this doesn't really have to do with the criticism but I'm sure it will come in place with the criticism. But um, do you take the position that it is impossible for the Christian God to exist?
Justin: Ah, yes, ya.
Sye: Okay, so you think it's impossible for God to exist?
Justin: Ya, I would say logically impossible.
Sye: Oh, okay, so you believe in absolute laws of logic then.
Justin: Ah, I don't know what absolute means. I believe in the laws of logic as statements, truth statements that are descriptive of ah, the preconditions of something existing.
Sye: Um, alright, so but when you say that it's logically impossible for God to exist, what do you mean by that then if you don't believe in absolute laws of logic? Are, are these laws relative, or do they apply universally?
Justin: Oh no it, I guess it depends on what you mean by the laws of logic. If you're talking about um, if you're talking about the laws of logic themselves, these statements like, ah X equals X right, or just these, these three main laws of logic. Ah, those statements, I of course believe that they exist and that they are, they are useful statements, um and, but but whether we're talking about the statements or what those statements refer to are are two very different questions. I believe that the statements exist, and what they refer to, um, I believe is the necessary precondition for something to exist.
Sye: Alright, um, let me just... I'll ask you a few more base questions, this might help but...
Sye: Are all axioms valid?
Justin: All axioms valid, um, I guess I don't know, I guess I would have to hear a false axiom to...(chuckles) um, well, no, I no, I guess you're right I would say that they are.
Sye: You would say that all axioms are valid?
Justin: Ya, They're just gonna be different terminologies of particular things. Ah. I think that the axiom of logic is is a valid axiom of course.
Sye: So if someone has the axiom that God exists, it's a necessarily valid axiom?
Justin: I don't think that's an axiom.
Sye: Well, what, what's your definition of an axiom then?
Justin: Um, something that is ah, self evident and can't actually be argued for but is just necessarily true in all possible worlds.
Sye: Okay, now, if I say my axiom is that God exists, how can you say that's not an axiom because that's exactly ...
Justin: I'd ask you to give a reason for thinking that.
Sye: Well, because of the impossibility of the contrary, but the thing is, if you're saying that I have to give a reason to validate my axiom, that's just the thing that you've been saying on other instances we don't have to give reasons to validate our axioms. And if their just axioms, and if you say they're all valid, then mine has to be valid as well.
Justin: Right, but there's a difference between holding logic as an axiom, uh, the the statements involved in logic, as an axiom verses a, you know, a a belief in a axiom supposedly that is a thinking being that exists atemporally and you know, that's... I mean Occam's razor uh, recommends a very clean shave for that view.
Sye: You know, Occam's razor um, states that you don't have to... you you can't add beings beyond what's necessary. But the thing is...
Sye: ...you need a you also, um, cannot subtract beings beyond what, what's necessary, and I'm saying that God is necessary for logic, but let me just ask you this, could you be wrong about everything you claim to know?
Justin: Um, ya, a good portion of it.
Sye: No, I'm... about everything. Are there things...
Justin: Well no, I, I don't think that I can be wrong when I say that a bachelor is unmarried. I don't think I can be wrong about that.
Sye: Okay, um, so how... let me ask you this then, how do you know anything according to your worldview? What do you know and how do you know it? You, you know that that is an impossibility, but how do know that?
Justin: Um, I think that's the axiom I'm, I'm subscribing to - logic.
Sye: Okay, um, how do you know that your reasoning about that axiom is valid? (3 second pause).
Justin: I'm not sure what that, what that even means.
Unedited 6:57 Edited 5:13
Sye: Okay, well you're reasoning, you're formulating this axiom in your mind in order to um, determine um, its truth value for example. But um, you're reasoning, I'd like to know how you know that your reasoning about anything is valid, about axioms about anything, about our discussion, how do you know that that's valid?
Justin: Um, I can uh, okay, so my, my reasoning, ah, is is based on the axiom, and um, you know, if it comports with that axiom, we can use that as, as, it's it's practical to know that, and so we're going to use it as a normative thing...
Sye: Do you use your ...
Justin: ...and we're going to recommend that our reasoning ah, comports with, with the fundamental logical reasoning principles.
Sye: Do you, do you use your reasoning to see whether or not it comports with that axiom?
Justin: Ah, ya.
Sye: Okay, so you're using, you're using you're reasoning to prove the validity of your reasoning. Is that correct?
Justin: Ah, ya, well reasoning, of course you have to um, assume that that reasoning ah has value.
Sye: Okay, is everybody's reasoning valid?
Justin: Ah, no.
Sye: Then how do you know that yours is?
Justin: Ah, well, by the definition of of validity, if that aligns with reasoning, then ya
Sye: Right, right, but the point is that you're using your reasoning in order to see whether this definition aligns with validity. So what I'm saying is that ...
Justin: That's what an axiom is
Sye: It's a viciously circular argument though to say that you're reasoning that the axiom is valid and you're using the axiom to show that your reasoning is valid.
Justin: Right, that's why I don't try and prove axioms. I've never claimed to try and prove axioms I assume them.
Sye: Right, but you don't know, but you don't know that it's valid though.
Justin: Um, I don't think that term applies.
Justin: as in it's just necessarily so, it's, it's not about asking whether it's valid or not.
Unedited 8:54 Edited 6:45
Justin: You don't ask whether the number 3 is valid.
Sye: No, but if I say that my axiom is that God exists, and I say that it's necessarily so, then you have an objection to that based on reasoning that you can't justify.
Justin: Um, (4 second pause), (chuckle) No, the, the thing is, is that um, pretending that God is an axiom in the same way that numbers, or that that that that logic itself is an axiom. Pretending that those are comparable on any scale is is really really just trying to get away with not having to justify your God.
Sye: Okay, let me ask you this question then, and then we'll get to the refutation of of your talk there. Is change a property of the universe?
Justin: Um, change is not a property of it, it's a tendency of it.
Sye: Okay so the universe, um, like a description of the universe is that it would be constantly changing. Would that be accurate?
Justin: Ah, sure.
Sye: Okay, now you said, um, in, in your talk with, uh, Gene Cook, that um, the laws of logic are a description of existence, but if change is a description of existence, how can unchanging laws also be a description of existence? How do you reconcile the two?
Justin: That, um, well at a fundamental level it's not changing it's it X is still X at the end of the day. Now the arrangement, and the way in which these substances interact, ah, that's always changing. But at the for.. at the very core of it the axiom is is it's not going to change.
Sye: Well, how how can you...
Justin: It's it's necessarily so.
Sye: How can you reconcile the things that change with the things that do not change and how do you know they won't switch?
Justin: I've already just said that.
Unedited 10:08 Edited 8:18
Sye: Well, I don't, I don't think you, well, maybe you can repeat it for me then because I didn't quite, quite get your explanation there.
Justin: Um, like I said, the arrangement of molecules within the universe and the state that they're in ah, is going to be changing, sure.
Sye: Oh, okay, so, so logic is not material then? (3 second pause).
Justin: No. No. Well, what do you mean by logic, are you talking about the laws...
Sye: Well, the laws of logic are are are not something that's in the natural world though if the natural world is constantly changing.
Justin: They're statements, they're conceptual. They are dependent on a thinking mind.
Sye: Okay, so, um, before there were thinking minds, could the universe have both existed and not existed at the same time and in the same way?
Sye: Okay, why not if logic is dependent on thinking minds?
Justin: Well the law... We have to make a distinction here between the laws of logic that are conceptual and that do depend on human minds to think of, versus what those laws refer to. What those laws refer to is there regardless of mind, is, regardless of whether a mind is thinking it or not.
Sye: Ok, what do they refer to then?
Justin: The nec... the nec... The preconditions, the nec... the nec... the necessary ah, attributes of existence. Ah, the relationship of of um, you know, either a, either a statement is is true or false. Ah, these are just necessary things.
Sye: Why is it necessary? Why why can't it be sound and fury signifying nothing?
Justin: I don't know, I don't know. Why does your God exist?
Sye: Well, he exists because it's impossible for Him not to exist.
Justin: There you go, there's the answer.
Sye: No, but the thing is what I am saying is that uh, you cannot reconcile things which do not change with things that do change. (3 second pause).
Justin: No, no. You're you're failing to make that distinction again.
Sye: Well what...
Justin: The the, okay, the laws of logic, the statements, ok. Ah, let's say that um, let's say that all human language completely died off, for some crazy reason, and then it started to build again in some other way, right? And then they came about laws of logic, but they phrased them in completely different ways. That would be an example of the laws of logic...
Unedited 12:53 Edited 9:58
Justin: ... changing the actual laws right. But what they referred to does not change.
Sye: Okay, but the thing is, what they refer to you describe as a characteristic of the natural world. But a characteristic of the natural world is also constant change and I'm just wondering how you reconcile...
Justin: No, no, as a precondition of the natural world. For something to exist it needs to be, it needs to fall within those logic, that those things are just um markers of what what it means for some things to exist essentially. That's what it's describing, when we say that something exists, what do we mean by that? And then that's where the laws of logic come in. They are describing what that means.
Sye: So, you're you're saying that the laws of logic are, that logic is descriptive then.
Justin: Oh yeah.
Sye: Ok then on what basis do you apply it to anything other than that which was described?
Justin: Well if we want our reasoning to align with with reality then it, then we need to treat it as prescriptive. If I'm going to reason to a particular conclusion, but ah my reasoning in no way reflects reality then I'm not going to be taken seriously...
Sye: That's that's exactly right.
Justin: ... if I want, if I wanna be taken seriously...
Sye: That's exactly right, but on what basis do you make a descriptive law prescriptive? I'm not asking the consequences of not doing so. I know the consequences of not doing so. I'm just asking your basis of doing so.
Justin: Oh, I'm um, we make it prescriptive ah, simply because, you know, if you want to be taken seriously, then then...
Justin:... you need to be ah logical.
Sye: But I'm not asking the consequences, I'm not asking what's gonna happen if you don't do it. I'm asking what is your basis for doing it?
Justin: What is my basis, I...
Sye: ...For making a descriptive law prescriptive.
Justin: Ah, what do you mean by basis?
Unedited 14:30 Edited 11:16
Sye: Well, what is your reasoning for doing... I'm not asking you the result for not doing it. The result, ok, you won't be taken seriously, I I agree with that. But the thing is, what is your um, what is your um reasoning, what what is your fundamental... Um, how do you, how do you go from taking a description to a prescription? What, what is the process by which you do that?
Justin: Well if someone comes to me...
Sye: Why do you apply it to anything other than what, that was described? Because what you're saying is well, because we won't be taken seriously then. But that's, that's what, that's the fallacy of irrelevant thesis, and I'll give you an example. Ah, let's say for instance I um, I went to somebody um, a reporter who was assigned to cover a plane crash. And he goes up to this plane crash and he sees a survivor stumbling towards him with, with his clothes smoldering and he says "How is it possible, you know, what's the basis of your survival? How is it possible that you survived?" And he said "Well if I didn't survive, I couldn't be here talking with you now." Now, now that's a a valid answer in that sure, he couldn't be there talking to you if he didn't survive, but that's not the reason why he survived that plane crash. So I'm asking what is the reason for taking a description to a prescription. I'm not asking the consequences of it because that's irrelevant.
Justin: Right, well I don't see how you know if if I'm... if someone's coming to me with a claim and it's complete nonsense, as in I can't make any coherent sense of it, uh, how, how is it not relevant that I would ask that they you know, if they want to be taken seriously then they should do this?
Sye: Well it's just like that that survivor saying "How is it not relevant that I'm here standing with you?"
Sye: It's irrelevant to the question as to how he survived, and I'm asking, you know, the process by which you take a description to a prescription. I'm not asking you the results of it, because that's irrelevant to my question.
Justin: Right, so you go from okay, if you want to be logical then you should be logical. That's how I get to a prescription.
Sye: Yeah, ok but that but ...
Justin: You, it it is it it...
Sye: So, it doesn't necessarily apply. It's a personal preference.
Justin: It requires a desire, it requires a it requires a belief and a desire about a particular state of affairs and then from there we can get to a prescription.
Justin: So, it's like, it's like if I wanna go to Vegas, ah, I should drive West, right?
Sye: So logic does... doesn't necessarily apply, it's just a personal preference. Is that what you're saying?
Justin: So if it is the case that I want, that I desire to be in Vegas then the way I fulfill that desire is I go to Vegas. I drive west.
Sye: But it's not necessary, it's not necessary.
Justin: Oh, ya, ya, no it's not nec... I don't have to drive to Vegas if I don't...
Sye: Okay so logic doesn't have to apply.
Justin: Ah, it applies if you want it to apply.
Sye: Okay, that's great. So it doesn't have to apply.
Sye: Wonderful. Ok, now um, let's just get to the objections of your talk.
Justin: Let's let's make sure, let's make sure we're we're we're talking straight here. When I say logic isn't necessary I'm talking about, ah, you can go around and and say illogical things to people, but peop.. you're not going to get any work done, right? I'm not saying that lo.., I'm saying that logic is necessary in the ultimate sense, but not in the sense of, ah, you can, you can ah talk incoherently, but you're not going to get anything done, you're not going to be able to communicate and if, and if you're talking, your goal is obviously to communicate, so if you're not doing what your goal is, then you're wasting your time.
Sye: Well, but it's not necessarily invalid. Just, you're just wasting time but it's not invalid.
Justin: No it is it is invalid. How, where did you get that from?
Sye: Okay, well how do you, how do you take a, how do you take a description of past events to say that something else is invalid? That's my point is that you're saying a prescription, but you're des.. describing past events. How... on what basis do you apply it to anything else? How do you know logic hasn't changed and that these inconsistencies are now valid? (2 second pause)
Justin: Because there's (chuckles). (3 second pause)
Justin: Okay, okay, what is your question again?
Sye: Okay, now how do you know that logic has not changed? Because you're talking about description of past events, why can't a future event be a description that actually invalidates logic?
Justin: Oh, um, I would just assume that it doesn't. I mean, I mean I'm using an inductive inference. Ah, we've never noticed it to change before, um, and it's it's necessarily so, so it doesn't make sense that it would change.
Sye: So your argument is that um, you're you're assuming that the future is like the past, based on the past?
Justin: Ah right. Which is an assumption.
Sye: Ok, so what if I said that I'm I'm going to assume that I'm never going to die based on the past, based on the fact that I've never died in the past. Would that be valid?
Justin: Ah, no that would be really, really bad reasoning, because everybody else that lives dies.
Sye: Ya, but I'm a lot like those other people except for one thing, I've never died. So why can't I take that assumption based on the past that I've never died into the future.
Justin: Well you can go ahead and make that assumption, but I don't think anybody's gonna to pay attention (chuckes).
Sye: Okay, so the the same thing is with logic then. On what basis...So so you're saying an argument from, an argument ad populum, that based on the majority, that's why you believe these things. It's not necessarily...
Justin: No. Where do you get that from?
Sye: Well you say: "Well, because nobody's going to take you seriously." So you're saying that that's why it's an invalid argument.
Justin: No I'm saying I'm saying you can go ahead and use that argument but it's...
Sye: Okay, so it's a valid argument then, I can use it. It's valid but people won't take me seriously. Is that what you're saying?
Justin: Ah, no, what I'm saying is that ah everyone else does die and...
Sye: Ya, that's right.
Justin: ...so you have strong reasons to accept that you are going to die.
Sye: No, but based on the past fact that I've never died, I have no reason, if if you use the same argument for logic, you're saying based on the past that, you know, the fact that logic hasn't changed in the past, which you, by the way couldn't know, um, but, you know, you're saying that based on that past ah, fact that logic hasn't changed you're going to assume that it won't change in the future. Well, you know, I can say the same thing because lots of things have changed in the past lots of other things have changed in the past why can't logic change. (2 second pause)
Justin: Ah, I'm I'm ... because its necessarily so.
Sye: How do you know that?
Justin: That's why... How do you know that God is not going to change? It's the exact same thing.
Sye: Well because okay, now that's that's the question, is how do I know that? Because God has revealed to me such that I can know for certain that He cannot change. That's how I know it.
Justin: How is that possible?
Unedited 20:31 Edited: 16:37
Sye: How is it possible?
Justin: How, how can you know...
Sye: Are you saying, are you suggesting that if the Christian God exists, who's all powerful and all knowing, He cannot reveal things to us such that we can know them for certain?
Justin: Well, of course I'm suggesting that.
Sye: That if such a God exists He couldn't do that?
Justin: Ah, ya, my my answer would be no, He couldn't do it.
Sye: Why not, and how do you know that for certain?
Justin: Because to know, to know something for certain means that it can't logically be any other way but...
Justin: ... but you can't disprove every other possibility. For instance...
Sye: Are you certain, are you certain?
Justin: Well, for instance ah you can't prove that some Cartesian demon is not deluding you about you know, which metaphysical system is true and which is false hell even...
Sye: Are you certain of that?
Justin: even your God of the Old Testament was fond of sending delusions
Sye: Wait, wait a minute, just so, are you, are you saying that certainty is impossible?
Sye: Okay then...
Justin: I have not said that. I'm I'm telling you that according... gaining certainty about a God from revelation is impossible.
Sye: Okay, how are you, how are you certain that that's impossible?
Justin: Because even within your own system, the God of the Old Testament sends delusions all the time how do you not know you're not a victim of those? How do you not know that Christianity is not just a big joke that God is playing on you?
Sye: Well, I'm saying that God...
Justin: If if you can't disprove that, then you can't be certain of it because this, because being certain requires ah, being able to know that it could not possible be any other so pretending you're certain is just being dishonest and I don't appreciate that.
Sye: Okay, so if you're saying that certainty can't be from the revelation of a God who knows everything that's all powerful, how is certainty possible? (2 second pause)
Justin: Ah, certainty, I don't think it.. I think certainty is is ah hardly ever possible. I think analytic truths are possible and that's about it, or are are capable of being certain.
Sye: Okay, can you tell me one thing that you know for certain, and how you know it then?
Justin: Ah, that uh,... um... that there are no such thing as square circles.
Sye: Okay, how how do you know that and how do you know that that can't be the case tomorrow since since you say logic is only based on observation, you've never observed a square circle, but how do you know that that can't be?
Justin: Because, because, given the definition of a circle and given the definition of a square...
Justin: If there's any time where something is being attributed both of those things, that person is not understanding what those definitions mean.
Sye: Okay, how do you know that won't change?
Justin: Ah, well, if if if we change the definitions of the circle and the square then I suppose you're right but...
Sye: Well not the definitions, but...
Justin: Assuming assuming the consistent definitions...
Sye: Okay, so you're making another assuming, you're making another assumption that the future will be like...
Justin: Well, I'm assuming that we're gonna call a circle round (chuckles).
Sye: Right, but you're assuming also that logic will not change and you're assuming that your reasoning is valid, you're assuming that your axioms are valid, and can't account for any of them.
Justin: Ah, can you account for logic?
Sye: Yes, I can
Justin: Because I never claimed to account for logic.
Sye: Yes I can...
Justin: ... How do you account for logic?
Sye: ... I I can account for it but not if you deny the God of Christianity.
Justin: Well, let's let's let's...
Sye: I can account for it according to the God of Christianity, according to revelation from Him.
Justin: Let's let's, let's pretend that I I don't
Justin: Let's let's or let's pretend that I I accept your your your God of Christianity. How on earth does God account for logical reasoning principles if God is subject to logic Himself?
Sye: Well, I I ...that's another thing that you said on Gene Cook's show which I ah I I take some ah difference with because God is subject to His nature and you you tried to make the case that uh, the nature of God is separable from His being and that's just like saying that wetness is separate separable from water...
Unedited 24:00 Edited 19:55
Sye: ...and I'm saying that that's not the case. You cannot separate the nature of God... logic is a refrec... a reflection of the way He thinks, you cannot separate that from God, and you're trying to argue that it was a separate thing.
Justin: Okay, so is is God's nature subject to God?
Sye: What do you mean by that?
Justin: Are are are you telling me that logic is... you're telling me that logic is a reflection of God's nature correct?
Justin: Okay, no I wanna know ah, is God's nature subject to God or is God subject to His nature?
Sye: Well, that... like I say is, that's like saying is wetness subject to water or is water subject to wetness? I'm saying they're inseparable. God is logical, you don't separate them. (2 second pause)
Justin: Okay, so I wanna know is... if if God is logical...
Justin: ...then and and God is all powerful.
Justin: Does God have the ability to make a square circle?
Sye: Well, the.. see the thing is...I'm I'm gonna point...
Justin: No, no, just answer the question Sye.
Sye: I'm I'm saying that uh, God cannot do that which is illogical cause it's contrary to His nature.
Justin: Okay, now is that because He's unable to or because His nature just uh, means that He has no desire to?
Sye: No, I'm saying that it's it's contrary to His nature and that's why it's impossible.
Justin: Ya but that's not answering a question. You're just, you just keep changing the terminology. I'm asking you whether it is possible for God to create a square circle...
Sye: No it's impossible for God to make a square circle.
Justin: Alright, so God is subject to the laws of logic.
Sye: No I... see see now you're separating them again. That's just like saying is it possible for water to be dry? Okay, so water is subject to wetness.
Justin: No, because even if, even if God wanted to He couldn't create a square circle correct?
Sye: Well, let let me show the the uh let me show the absurdity of positing something like that cause one of the dilemmas that people often ah bring up is: "Can God make a rock so big that He can't lift it?" And then my answer to that is, "Well, do you think that in order to be in order to be omnipotent that God has to be able to do the logically impossible?" And if people say: "Yes," I say, "Well then yes, God can make a rock so big that He can't lift," and then the next objection is: "Oh, then there's something that God can't do, He can't lift that rock," and I say: "No, a logically impossible, god who can do the logically impossible can lift a rock he can't lift."
Justin: So God is...
Sye: So, I'm just showing the... the absurdity of...
Justin: God is subject to the laws of logic. It's it's very simple here
Sye: He's subject to his nature.
Justin: Ya, and His nature...
Sye: Wetness, wetness is subject to water
Unedited 26:25 Edited 22:16
Justin: Right, and the point is did God get to choose his nature?
Sye: No, that's how He is.
Justin: No, He just necessarily is that way.
Sye: That's right.
Justin: He has limitations, and the limitations are called logic.
Sye: No, it's not a limitation...
Justin: That's what it is.
Sye: No if you're saying that that that being illogical is a limitation, no I'm just showing you the absurdity, with my previous uh, with my previous example. The absurdity of positing a God that has to be able to do the logically impossible.
Justin: No, I, I'm saying that logic is a necessary, is a necessary limitation but what you're telling me is that it's not necessary. You're telling me that it only happens to be that way because God wa... always has happened to be that way. He He could have been... God could have... you're telling me essentially that there is a possible world where God has always existed, but He's always been able to make square circles.
Sye: I have never said anything like that. I'm saying that God has always existed, and His nature has always been logical. There is no other possibility. (3 second pause)
Justin: (chuckles) Sye, I I really um, (2 second pause) I really want you to be honest with your terminology here.
Sye: No, that's honest.
Justin: Okay, now if if we're talking... if if you're going to say that um, logic is a reflection of God's nature.
Justin: and and then you're going to say that ah, He can't do certain things.
Justin: ah, and this is because of His nature
Justin: Then I'm telling you that God is subject to His nature, which you equate with logic.
Sye: No, I, I'm ya He's subject to His nature that's correct.
Justin: So by a very simple understanding line of reasoning we can understand that God is subject to the laws of logic.
Justin: He's not the author of them.
Sye: That's correct, God didn't create logic, you're right.
Justin: Okay, so you didn't account for a damn thing because, guess what, it is the nature of reality that is the way that ah logic is ...
Sye: Ya, but the, but your problem is that the nature of reality is also constant change and you can't reconcile the two.
Justin: No, no, we've talked about that. We're going to move on to something else now.
Unedited 28:32 edited 24:08
Sye: Okay, let's go, let's just go into ah, into your talk there, but ah, you know, I think that the listeners will be able to see ah, exactly um, the the problem with your position. Um, one of the things you said at the beginning of your talk, you asked if everybody uh, there was Christians and that's a.....
Sye: ... that's a mis-stating of the position. I don't say that everybody is Christians, I'm saying that everybody knows that God exists and there's a big difference, because uh...
Justin: Right, and I was equating the two, and and sure, I'm not as specific as you would have liked me to be.
Sye: Okay, um, now one thing...
Justin: But you, I think you understand the point that I was making right?
Sye: Well, it was incorrect, but I, I understand that uh, well, I don't know, I, I think that a lot of the stuff you said were trying to appease uh, um, the atheistic audience that you had because if they were Christians they would have objected to that kind of thing, but you probably said things that the atheists wanted to hear.
Justin: Like what?
Sye: Well, that you know, that they're all Christians, and you know, because, you didn't say: "Do all of you know that God exists?" and I'm saying that that would have been more consistent with presuppositionalist's ah position. (2 second pause)
Justin: Okay, right ya, ya, I mean that's a pretty minor point though, I was obviously um, you know, ah, I was trying to phrase it in a way that would be an interesting introduction to...
Sye: Well, it's not really a minor point because um, because I get a lot of grief from Christians who seem to think that that's what I'm positing, that everybody's a Christian because in my first debate with Paul, um, that was kinda left hanging, but I don't say that everyone's a Christian, I'm saying that everyone knows for certain that God exists. So that's why, um, it was a bone of contention with me when you said that.
Sye: Um, now one thing that I definitely agree with is that you said is that presuppositionalism doesn't try to argue for the truth of Christianity. That's correct. I'm saying that if you don't start with the presupposition that Christianity is true that you can't make sense of anything.
Sye: Um, now one thing that you had also said is that you seek to, that, uh, uh, presuppositionalists, presuppositionalists seek to ah, demonstrate that all non-Christian views are incoherent. Well, that's not necessarily the case. What, what I'm saying is that...
Justin: You're saying that coherence itself doesn't make any sense within...
Sye: No, no, no, what I'm saying is that Christianity is true, not because uh, uh, all others are incoherent, but, or, or because the contrary is impossible, were saying that Christianity is true and the others are impossible and the others are (I meant aren't) coherent. So I don't have to disprove all the other ones, I'm saying that by God's revelation we know that the other ones are true, or, the other ones are false, that that they're not coherent, and if anybody wants to bring them up then I'll gladly um, you know, show them the problems with their worldview, but I don't seek to go out and disprove all the other ones because I know all the other ones are are false already.
Unedited 31:08 Edited 26:37
Sye: Um, another point you made, you said um, you expose that you know that ah, that God exists by the way you live your life, that's true. Um, one thing you said that um, you call, ah, ah, reasoning, systems of reasoning without God a disjointed web, and then um, you say that just throwing God into that web that you know, it, it repairs that web or that it, it it fix these ah disjoints.
Justin: Do, do, do you know what I was talking about when I said that?
Sye: Well, why don't you elaborate on that then.
Justin: Um, well, I'm saying that co... that, that the presuppositionalist position is is a coherentist epistemology, and, you know what that means?
Sye: Uh, hmm.
Justin: Okay, that's essentially what I was saying there, is that um, you know, without, ah, you know, from a subjective standpoint, from from a personal epistemology ah unless you have a a the Christian God in your worldview, then nothing makes sense.
Sye: Right, but that's not a matter of...
Justin: That that proof that the proof of the Christian God is that there is such a thing as proof in the first place essentially.
Sye: Right, but, but, the thing is, that's just not a matter of repairing a disjointed web, what what the presuppositionlist says is that you don't have a web at all. That you need uh God as a foundation for that...
Justin: Well, clearly I have beliefs right? Clearly atheists have beliefs.
Sye: Ya, but what what I'm saying is that you have these beliefs and anything you make sense of is because you presuppose God.
Justin: Ya, that's exactly what I'm saying.
Sye: No you're saying that you have a disjointed web, I'm saying you have no web, you have no web at all, and any web that you do have is because you presuppose God.
Justin: What what what it, okay, um, the web, alright, a web of beliefs, ah a belief is a propositional attitude about what is true about the world...
Justin: Okay, regardless, I have that okay, I just, I according to you I just don't know how to make sense of that.
Sye: No, no, well the thing is you don't have that without God, cause let... I mean that's one of the questions, what is truth according to your worldview? (2 second pause)
Justin: No, I mean do you... I I really don't think you understand ah, what I'm saying with the coherentist epistemology but it's a minor point so let's move on to something .
Sye: Okay, well, let me just get back to that question though because you said that you you have beliefs, you have truth claims, and and you know from your talk with Gene you did make several truth claims there, but what is truth according to your worldview? (2 second pause)
Unedited 33:30 Edited 28:51
Justin: Ah, what is, what is truth, um, (2 second pause) well truth is something that corresponds with reality. I think that's a pretty controversial non-controversial point to make.
Sye: Okay, but the thing is in order to see if something corresponds with reality you have to make many assumptions.
Justin: Of course
Sye: You have to assume that your reasoning is valid that your senses are valid that your memory is valid and and all of those things....
Justin: I don't I don't have to assume all of those I can use them as checks for each other.
Sye: Okay, you don't have to assume that your reasoning is valid in order to determine truth?
Justin: Oh I have to, I have to assume it as a starting point sure but there are points where um, I don't necessarily have to assume that my my um, my observations are necessarily true. I can use the, I can use other people to corroborate such things.
Sye: Yeah, but the thing is that you use your senses in that corroboration though.
Sye: So you're assuming that your senses are valid to prove that your senses are valid.
Justin: Well, what I what I would be doing is I would be assuming things and then I would come to a conclusion and if other people are coming to those same conclusions then I have a high degree of confidence that the this particular thing is is the case.
Sye: Right, but the thing is that you're assuming that your senses are valid in order to make that determination...
Justin: Right right I said that from the beginning.
Sye: ...so you have zero degree of confidence then because you're begging the question.
Justin: How on Earth does that follow Sye?
Sye: You're begging the question
Justin: Zero degree of confidence?
Sye: Pardon me?
Justin: No, no you, I I I have from the beginning told you that there are assumptions necessary in this. There are assumptions necessary in every view.
Sye: They're necessary but you can't account for them, that's my point.
Justin: Yeah that's what assumptions are Sye.
Sye: Yeah, but you can't account for the validity of your assumptions I can account for the validity of mine.
Justin: That's that's what assumptions are. You can't (chuckles)...
Sye: Okay, are are all assumptions valid? (2 second pause)
Unedited 35:17 Edited 30:30
Justin: Uhm, assumptions are, are, uh, I don't, I don't think valid is is is a term for that.
Sye: If if I assume, for instance, that God exists you know how come that one you would challenge but you don't challenge the assumption that your reasoning is valid?
Justin: Well I think I think it's, I think we would both agree that we need to have as few assumptions as possible right?
Sye: Yeah, but the thing is, are you saying that your assumption that your reasoning is valid that's unassailable?
Justin: Would, so you would agree that we need to have as few assumptions as possible? So if we can isolate the assumptions ....
Sye: Well I I'd say that you have to have a foundation for your assumptions.
Justin: So, it, ok that makes absolutely no sense...um, what is an assumption?
Sye: Well why don't you describe it.
Justin: (Chuckles) Ok, so, um, an assumption I'm saying is something we don't have rational justification for, okay. Now, um so like induction I don't have rational justification for it, I assume it out of, um, practical necessity.
Sye: So out of faith then?
Justin: I don't really have any other I don't really have any other choice but to assume it. I move forward...
Sye: Ok, so that's blind faith then?
Justin: Uh, no I don't call I don't I would not call that faith. Faith is, is, is something that I have no interest in.
Sye: Yeah, ok, but then on what basis do you assume that these assumptions are valid? Because you can't do otherwise is that what you are saying?
Justin: Okay, once again uh you're, you're misunderstanding what an assumption is. (2 second pause) I'm not claiming that the assumptions are valid.
Sye: oh, ok.
Justin: I'm claiming that I have assumptions.
Sye: Okay so you're not claiming that your reasoning is valid. (2 second pause)
Justin: uh, I'm claiming that I'm assuming that reasoning is valid.
Sye: (Chuckles), So you're (chuckles) you just told me you're not claiming your assumption's valid and now you're telling me that you're claiming that you're assuming that your reasoning is valid. I mean isn't that a direct contradiction?
Justin: Um...no not, not really.
Sye: Alright, ok, that's fine I think that we can leave that I think that's pretty um pretty clear where we are going there.
Justin: I would agree. (chuckles)
Justin: Okay now...
Sye: Now one of the things you said I you appeal to morals but um atheists appeal to morals but they have no objective standard for them I would agree that's definitely true that you have no objective standard and if you want to get into your justification for morality at this point we could that but it's definitely not objective.
Justin: Oh, no I would I would actually uh, think that the table is actually completely turned on this way, um, you are the one with the subjective, the subjectivist theory of morality and I am the one who has an objectivist theory of morality.
Sye: Okay, let's hear your objectivist theory then.
Justin: Um well,... ah morality is is about desires would you agree? It's about, it's about reasons...
Sye: Well, I, no I would say that morality, morality is about the character of God. That's what I would say it's about.
Justin: The subjective character of God, yeah I I understand your subjectivist theory.
Sye: No, no I wouldn't it's subjective character it's about the objective character of God, but we're talking about your justification for morality.
Justin: So, is God a personal being?
Sye: Yes, He is.
Justin: Ok, so let's not use different words that don't make sense when we're gonna have a belief in a personal being and then call it objective, okay. I wanna I wanna be consistent with the terms we're using today so let's not try and put things ah where they don't belong.
Sye: Well, I don't I don't see how you're saying that ah that because He's a personal being He's not objective. I don't follow your reasoning there.
Unedited 38:31 Edited 33:30
Justin: Well, no, in in your view that that He exists, of course, that's objective in your view, um, but what I'm saying is that God's opinions about what is right and what is wrong those are necessarily subjective.
Sye: They're not His opinions, they're not His opinions, that's the point. They're based on His character. For instance, stealing...
Justin: Okay, now here we get to, here we get to this again. Is God subject to His character? Did God, is God...
Sye: I'm saying they're inseparable. It's like i say, is wetness subject to water? But let me give you an example: Stealing is not wrong because God makes an arbitrary command that stealing is wrong; stealing is wrong because God is not a thief.
Justin: Stealing is wrong because God just happens to have the a bad opinion towards stealing.
Sye: No. No. It has nothing to do with His opinion towards it. It has to do with His character. Stealing is wrong because God is not a thief, that's why it's wrong. It's not about His opinion, it's about His unchanging character. But now let's talk about your ah view of objective morality.
Justin: Is is is God a liar?
Sye: No, He's not.
Justin: Does God send delusions? Because I think you need to read your Bible.
Sye: Well, the thing is I I don't discuss Scripture with those who don't ah hold it as authoritative.
Justin: Oh, and you don't you don't discuss Scripture with people who are making valid points against your ethical theory either do you.
Sye: No, not at all, because ah the thing is I hold this.....we both have rescuing devices. I'm gonna interpret Scripture according to the fact that, the the revelation that God does not lie...
Justin: Okay w...
Sye: ...and you're going to interpret it according to your subjective view of logic and your um...
Justin: So God, so God does not ah, God does not lie you're telling me.
Sye: That's right. God does not lie.
Justin: Ok. Read your Bible. That's all.
Sye: Well I do read my Bible, but like I say, I will come to....
Justin: Does He not send spirits of delusion? Does He not harden Pharaoh's heart ah so that Pharaoh knows lies now and....
Sye: I can reconcile that. I can reconcile that to a Christian....
Justin: Yeah, you really need to, don't you?
Sye: No, the thing is those are the kind of things we talk about in Bible study, and if you want to come to our Bible study Sundays after church you're more than welcome. I know you're in Grand Rapids, you're not that far away, you can ask these type of questions. But these are the things that I reconcile with Christians. I don't reconcile it with non-Christians because you're going to take your assumptions that God doesn't exist, that God can lie, into the argument.
Justin: No, no, no no no no. I'm entering your worldview with the assumption that God exists here, Okay? I'm playing by your rules. I'm telling you that you need to read your Bible.
Unedited 40:36 Edited 35:30
Sye: Ok, are you entering with the assumption... are you, are you entering with the assumption that God cannot lie?
Justin: Um......... I'm entering with the assumption that if I'm to read Scripture, and if that is to be the the way of which I get information about God then to claim that God does not lie or does not tell mis-truths is simply not being honest with what the Scripture tells us.
Sye: And I'm saying that if you do not enter it with the assumption that God's revealed Word that He cannot lie, then you're entering with an incorrect assumption, and there's no use discussing it with you because you're going to come in with your interpretation just as I'm going to come in with my interpretation based on God's revelation. But the thing is, and this is another point that I want to make, is that you will be unable to see the truth until you repent. That's Biblical as well - 2 Timothy 2:25 - that it's repentance that comes before a knowledge of the truth, and that's why I I object to so many different forms of apologetics because what people try to do is get people to see the truth so that they'll repent, and what I'm saying is that you will not be able to see the truth until you repent. So that's why I don't, I don't bother trying to explain these things to unbelievers because you will not be able to see the truth of it until you repent. (3 second Pause)
Justin: Ok, so does God, um you really....
Sye: Well, let's get back, ah what we were talking about is the objection...
Justin: No, I I really wanna find out if...
Sye: ...was that you have an objective moral standard, and I'd like to get back to your objective moral standard because I have some big problems with that.
Justin: I really want to, quickly, I really want to quickly understand um, how you can possibly read the Old Testament and come away with this assertion that God does not tell people things that are not true.
Sye: Well, like I say, Sunday mornings you can come to our Bible study and we'll discuss it. God uses secondary means. God does not lie.
Justin: This is so incredibly convenient. Let's go to the next topic, then.
Sye: Well, I'm saying I'm saying that God uses secondary means. That's how I'd explain it to a Christian, and there's anthropomorphisms in Scripture as well. That's how I'd explain it to Christians. But to you, who won't accept that from the base, it's no use discussing it with you. So let's...
Justin: Wouldn't wouldn't ah wouldn't your.... ok, where do you get the idea that God doesn't lie? Tell me that.
Sye: From Scripture.
Justin: Ok, now, now why are you not being consistent in saying that that might not be....you know, that might be just an anthropomorphism. Maybe God does lie.
Sye: No, because it's not consistent with His character throughout Scripture. You have to read the whole Bible, and you have to and you have to reconcile God's character from all of Scripture.
Justin: Okay so so, when there's a contradiction, um, clearly, um, you know, you're just not reading your Bible....
Sye: No, I'm saying there are no contradictions. When there are things that don't make sense you look at all of Scripture...
Sye: ...and you and and you look at the interpretation, and what you will not be able to get until you repent, and that's my point.
Justin: That's completely adorable.
Sye: Yeah, fantastic. You cannot understand it until you repent. But the thing is, you can't know anything to be true according to your worldview as we've clearly pointed out a number of times, so when you object to my worldview when you object to my Scripture, you know, you you can't justify your objections.
Justin: No, that's that's just not true. We've had this conversation.
Sye: Okay, what is truth, according to your worldview?
Justin: No. We're moving on, we're moving on. Um... okay so you wanna talk about morality.
Sye: Ok, let's get back to your objective standard of morality.
Sye: Ok, go ahead.
Unedited 43:34 Edited 38:20
Justin: Okay what I want, okay, what okay so if we are gonna describe morality, okay, ah, let's, let's do this; morality is about, um, judging intentional actions, right?
Sye: Well, that's your worldview but go on...
Justin: No, uh, morality is about judging intentional actions
Sye: Well that's your worldview, my worldview is morality is about the character of God, but I'd like to hear your objective standard for morality.
Justin: Okay, so ah, I'm, that's that's my claim then is that morality is about um, if we're gonna describe moral discourse of the world, that's what people are generally doing, is they're judging intentional actions.
Sye: Ya but you don't get a prescription from a description, we've already talked about that...
Justin: Ya, I, I, I'm getting to that.
Justin: Okay, so, um, if If we're describing that, ah it seems as though ah, what people are doing is they're judging intentional actions throughout their community. Now ah, they're judging them as good or bad, these are value terms. Um, now, intentional actions require desires, ah, desires are propositional attitudes towards particular propositions being true, right? So If I desire to be drinking water um and I don't have water near me, then I will describe that situation as bad; that'll be the value term that I place on it because the value is a, is a description of the relationship between my desire and the states of affairs, right? So if I desire to be drinking water, and I happen to not be drinking water, then I describe that as bad. That's a subjective value, generic value statement.
Sye: Subjective right?
Justin: Right, that's completely subjective.
Justin: Um, now, when talking about morality, I, I'm gonna make the claim that, ah, mor..., in the same, in the same way that, that ah generic value judgments are made to describe the relationship between desires and states of affairs, ah, moral value claims are descriptions of the ah, relationship between desires and various specific kinds of states of affairs because I think that moral value is a, is a sub-set of generic value. Now how I, um, and so and so what I'm saying is that a moral value is a relationship between desires and very specific kinds of states of affairs and those states of affairs are brain states. So a moral value is the description of the relationship between desires and other desires. So a, a desire that tends to fulfill other desires, that is, that is going to be a good desire. So it's a, it's in that sense, um, while the desires themselves are subjective, the relationships, and therefore their their value in moral terms is going to be objective, because it's just, it's it's not a subjective value; it's not a subjective judgment as to whether some particular desire tends to thwart other desires. The fact that stealing; the desire to steal is a desire that tends to thwart other desires; it's not simply a subjective thing.
Sye: But my question is why is it immoral to thwart other, other desires? (2 second pause)
Justin: Because, it's the, okay, what I'm saying, you know how I got to those value judgments, um, when we're talking about things that tend to thwart other things, then we're, we're calling those bad in the same sense that I say that I, when I'm not drinking water and I want to be drinking water, then I value that bad.
Sye: But you're calling them bad subjectively...
Justin: Um, well, that's the term we're applying to them.
Sye: Right, so the thing....
Justin: But their tendency to fulfill or thwart other desires is is not a subjective value. It's not a, it's not a subjective judgment. It is an objective judgment about that very nature of that desire.
Sye: But I'm saying why is it immoral to thwart other desires?
Justin: Well, you don't have to call it morality, you don't have to do that.
Sye: Well, why is it wrong?
Justin: Well, I'm I'm saying that ah, (3 second pause, clears throat) it's it's it's wrong because those are the terms we use. Those are the moral terms we use in our moral discourse.
Sye: Okay, so if it's based on terms that you subjectively use, then it's not objective, which is the point.
Justin: No, no, no, no, I'm describing the moral discourse of people and these are the terms that we use.
Sye: But you can't tell me why it's objectively wrong to thwart desires; you're just, you're just saying "well based on terms that you happen to use" but that's not an objective, I mean, people can you know, can counteract that, they can disagree with that and you have no basis for saying "Well this is what you ought to do" because you can't get an "is" from an, you can't get an "ought" from an "is"
Justin: Okay, what is an "ought?" Why don't, why don't you describe what an "ought" is?
Sye: And "ought" is something that we should do.
Justin: Okay, let's not use equivocations, what is a "should"?
Sye: Oh, do you want me to get a dictionary and look it up?
Sye: An obligation, it's an obligation...
Justin: Okay, what's an obligaton?
Sye: ...Are you gonna ask me what that means now?
Justin: You're you're using a lot of these words but you're not actually giving me any content to what they actually even mean.
Unedited 48:36 Edited 42:56
Sye: Are you trying to tell me that you don't know what "ought" or "should" or or moral obligations are? Are you trying to tell me that?
Justin: Oh I, I have, I have definitions of them.
Sye: Okay then, where do you get objective...
Justin: ... but you use them very fast and loose and I wanna know what you mean by them . . .
Sye: Where do you get objective moral obligations then, from?
Justin: I want to first know what you mean by that because I'm I've yet to even get to that . . .
Sye: A moral is things that we should or should not do.
Justin: Right, but what does that mean? Can you, can you, can you describe what this means?... this "should" or this "ought", this sense of "ought?" I don't know what that means yet according to your view.
Sye: Okay, if you don't know what it means then how can you have a moral, an objective moral standard? Because...
Justin: I've already told you that.
Sye: An objective moral standard is, some things that we should or should not do and if you don't know what they mean then you can't have an objective moral standard.
Justin: Okay, when we're talking about "ought," what I'm gonna say is that "ought" means that we have reasons to do X. For me, to "ought to do X", like uh, okay, so, ah, "Person A ought to do X." I'm saying that person A has reasons to do X.
Sye: Oh, okay, so if a person has a reason to molest a child, then it's an ought, then its fine?
Justin: Not all oughts are moral oughts. Clearly, if I want to go to Vegas then I, then I ought to drive West...
Justin:... that doesn't mean it's a moral obligation.
Sye: Okay, how do you deffer... how do you differentiate the ones that are moral and the ones that are immoral?
Justin: Ah, I've already talked about this man.
Sye: Yeah, I realize that, and the thing is that you have not told me why it's immoral to thwart other desires.
Justin: Well, you can listen to the recording over again.
Justin: Wanna go to another topic?
Sye: Sure. Um another thing that you have said is that you use logic but account, you can't account for it, that's definitely what ah presuppositionalists say. You assume the regularity of nature and you can't account for it, that's another thing that we say that was correct. Um, now you say "There's no use working to convince a person of the fallacy of their position". Well, that's not exactly true because the thing is, in our argumentation, we of course, you know, work to make a convincing argument, but the point is that I can't...
Justin: Continue reading, continue reading on that part.
Sye: No, that's all I, that's the only note that I ...
Justin: ... what do I, what do I say soon after.
Sye: ... that's the only note that I took. You can, if you want to elaborate on that, that's fine.
Justin: Oh, no, I'm just saying, according to, I think it was, I think it was Van Til, ah, he doesn't try and argue towards people because he can't, because they don't share a neutral um, ground from which to do that.
Sye: Yeah, that's correct, there is no neutrality, but, the thing is, we do present convincing arguments it's just that we can't convince you and that's the point.
Justin: Right, the difference between proof and persuasion.
Sye: Right. Um, another point that I had here is um, "The only thing that we can do is critique the worldview of the nonbeliever to shows its incoherence" that, that is not the position of the presuppositionalist either. Like, um, we also can present the law in order to hope that the Holy Spirit will use that to convict a person of their sinfulness. I'm not saying that the only thing that we do is dismantle other worldviews; I mean, of course, you know...
Justin: Yeah, but how would it make sense to present them with the law if they're suppressing the truth in the first place? How does that make any sense?
Sye: Well, because the law can penetrate that suppression.
Justin: How does, how does . . .
Sye: Through the work of the Holy Spirit.
Justin: ... what kind of mechanism does it, how what what sort of mechanism does that work through?
Sye: Through the work of the Holy Spirit, that He convicts people of their sin. The thing is, what I say in this argument too is that the Holy Spirit doesn't make bad arguments good; He opens the eyes and opens the heart to good arguments. So, when I talk...
Justin:... No, the Holy Spirit makes good arguments bad.
Sye: ... when I talk, when I talk to people about, about their sinfulness ... you know, when people are converted, they're not converted in a vacuum; they have to be converted to a knowledge of their sinfulness; to a knowledge of the fallacy of their worldview. And you say that "If you show them the inconsistency they may humble themselves." Again, no, I'm not saying that because I show you the inconsistency of your worldview that you'll humble yourself. I'm saying that I show you the inconsistency of the worldview and hopefully the Holy Spirit will work in that when you listen back to this and see that you have no answer to these questions. Hopefully the Holy Spirit will work in that so that you can see the error of your ways and that you can repent and come to know the truth.
Sye: Now, one thing you said, that, um that our, that the presuppositionalist method was designed to confuse, to equivocate, beg the question, special pleading, and we ask incoherent questions, but, what I'm saying with my critique of this is that you can't account for any of those being fallacious.
Justin: Ah, yes I can.
Sye: No, you're just saying that based on the past, based on the past, your reasoning about past laws which you cannot validate; we've already gone over that...
Justin: No, based on the necessary preconditions of existence, okay...
Sye: Well the thing is, you, you don't know that your reasoning about that is valid though; we've already discussed that ... that it's just an assumption you know that that that these things happened in the past and you have no basis for assuming that its gonna be like that two seconds from now. (3 second pause).
Justin: Alright, well, ah, Sye, I think that's all of the time we have today. Um, I want to thank you for coming on the show and as a reminder to our listeners, ah, check out proofthatgodexists.org, and as always, any questions or comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ah, Sye, thanks for coming on.
Sye: Alright, thanks a lot Justin.
Justin: Alright, take care.
Sye: Bye, bye.