Christian Apologetics - Lesson 5

Invalid Worldviews

Explanations and responses to different worldviews.

Ronald Nash
Christian Apologetics
Lesson 5
Watching Now
Invalid Worldviews

Postmodern Irrationalism and the Christian Worldview

Part 2

II.  Invalid Worldviews

A.  Two Terms

1.  Logically Self-defeating

2.  Self-referentially absurd

B.  Skepticism

1.  No proposition is true.

2.  Killer Questions

a.  Is this proposition true?

b.  Do you know that?

C.  Epistemological Relativism

1.  All propositions are true.

2.  Response

D.  Evidentialism

1.  It is immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof.

2.  Killer question - Where is your proof for this thesis?

E.  Universal Claims vs. Moderate Claims

F.  Scientific Positivism

1.  It is irrational to believe anything that cannot be verified by the scientific method.

2.  Killer question - What scientific experiment proves this statement?

G.  Misology

1.  A hatred for reason or logic

2.  Radical Feminism

H.  Deconstructionism

1.  It is impossible ever to know the meaning of any written text.

2.  Implications

3.  D. A. Carson - The Gagging of God

4.  Examples of Postmodernism

  • Introduction to Apologetics.

  • Apologetics involves finding evidence and presenting arguments to defend the Christian faith.

  • Two prominent worldviews are Christian theism and naturalism.

  • The law of non-contradiction states that A cannot be B and non-B at the same time and in the same sense.

  • Explanations and responses to different worldviews.

  • If God is good and all powerful, then why does evil exist?

  • Discussion about how the existence of evil is consistent with God's character.

  • Your noetic structure, presuppositions and view of epistemology are important elements in the formation of your worldview.

  • Discussion of deductive presuppositionalism vs. inductive presuppositionalism.

  • Objections to inductive presuppositionalism.

  • Arguments for and against evidentialism.

  • Arguments for and against foundationalism.

  • Discussion of natural theology.

  • There are valid, sound and cogent arguments for the existence of God, but no coercive proofs.

  • Discussion of different arguments for God's existence.

  • One version of the cosmological argument for God's existence emphasizes God as first in time, another emphasizes God as first in importance.

  • A possible world is a way the real world could have been. Modal logic, propositions, state of affairs and eternal entities are some of the considerations when discussing a possible world.

  • Something is logically possible if its description does not include a logical contradiction. The existence of the laws of knowledge refute the system of naturalism.

  • Middle knowledge is a form of knowledge attributed to God by Molina.

  • Miracles are a dividing line and central to Christianity.

  • David Hume's rational arguments against miracles and responses to those arguments.

  • Two miracles central to Christianity are the incarnation and resurrection.

  • The question of whether or not Jesus is the only savior touches on pluralism, inclusivism and exclusivism.

  • Pluralism is the view that all religions have salvific value.

  • Inclusivism is the view that even though the work of Christ is the only means of salvation, it does not follow that explicit knowledge of Christ is necessary in order for a person to be saved.

  • Salvation is totally the work of God and all children who die in infancy are elect of God.

  • Discussion from a biblical perspective of God's character and attributes.

  • Open theists believe that God does not have a perfect knowledge of the future.

  • Divine omnipotence and divine omniscience are two attributes of God.

  • When contemplating life after death, remember, Jesus has been there and come back. Will you commit your life to him or reject him?

These lectures were given at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida during the fall of 2001.


Dr. Ronald Nash
Christian Apologetics
Invalid Worldviews
Lesson Transcript


Now on the board on the screen, I'm I have a term that's called invalid worldviews. I told you last week that there are ways in which we test worldviews. We can test worldviews by empirical data, experience, the test of our experience, the test of inner experience. But there is also a way of testing worldviews according to reason, which would be the law of non contradiction. Here I just want to introduce you to two terms, and then I'm going to give you some examples of these two terms. One of these terms is logically self-defeating. There are beliefs in life that are false, not because we can necessarily find evidence that refutes them. They are false because they deny they violate the law of non contradiction. A similar phrase or expression would be the term self-referential absurd. If you find yourself talking someday to an idiot, okay, they do exist. And why not use the word? I mean, we know that people exist who are idiots. Instead of telling him he's an idiot, which seems impolite. Simply say, Well, sir, don't you understand that what you believe is self-referential? Absurd. Of course, he won't know what you mean, but you'll feel better. Okay. Now, I'm going to give you some examples of self-referential, absurd beliefs. And the first example I'm going to give you. Well, here, let me just put this on the screen. I got this off the Internet and it's a little story. And some of you may laugh for the first time today. Let me read it. A college student was in a philosophy class where a class discussion one day dealt with the issue of God's existence. The professor used the following logic Has anyone in this class heard God? Nobody spoke as anyone in this class touched God. Again, nobody spoke. Has anyone in this class seen God? And when nobody spoke for the third time, the professor simply stated. Then there is no God at this moment. One of my former students rose to his feet and asked for permission to speak. How do I know it was One of my former students had to be. Had to be. So the student asked for permission to speak. And this is what he says. Students stood up and said, Has anyone in this class heard? Our professors break their silence? Has anyone in this class seen our professors break? When no one in the class dared to speak. Has anyone seen our brain professor's brain? Has anybody touched it? Has anybody heard it? When no one in the class dared to speak, the student concluded them. Then if we use our professor's logic, it must be true that our professor has no brain. Now, this is a very brave student. Okay, here's why. Liberals have no sense of humor. They don't. They don't never joke with a liberal. Actually, though, I did hear that. What? That's. That's the end of the Internet transmission here. I did hear that this student ended up getting an A because of the rest of the class had been dumb enough to accept his original argument. At least there was one student who saw through it. That's a logically self-defeating group of claims up there. Now, one very good example of a logically self-defeating belief is called skepticism. Some of you will have heard this before. Some of you will know this. But that's all right. You need to hear it anyway. There are two ways in which you can define skepticism. And here they are on the screen. Skepticism is, first of all, the belief that no proposition is true. And secondly, it can be defined as the belief that no one can know anything. Either way it's formulated, you're dealing with skepticism. Okay. Now, there is a very easy way to refute skepticism. I call these killer questions. That is, you can blow certain positions out of the water by simply asking a very simple question. The simple question to the first formulation is this The formulation, again, is no proposition is true. Here's the killer question Is this proposition true? You're asking if the proposition that expresses the essence of skepticism is true. Now, the skeptic only has two answers. If he says his proposition is true, he is contradicting himself. You see that? He's saying no proposition is true, except the proposition that. No, he's offering a counter example here. He's he's contradicting himself. So if he says true, he's a dead duck. But he only has one other answer. If he says my proposition is false. Why would you continue to argue with the guy? He's saying no proposition is true, including my proposition. Now, can you imagine anybody foolish enough to start an argument with that guy? He's just told you he doesn't know what he's talking about. Now we have our second example. No one can know anything. Here's the killer question. Do you know that if he says yes, you've got him. If he says no, you've got him. Now let me show you why no one can know anything. Do you know that? Of course I know that. He's contradicting himself. No one can know anything. Do you know that? No. Why stand around any longer? My mother used to teach me never to argue with an idiot. All right. At this point, you just begin to move slowly. This guy could be dangerous. Dangerous. So these are examples of logically self-defeating beliefs. We're going to look at worldviews that really are important in the academic world of today. Now, fortunately, if 20 years from today, people turn back and, you know, maybe the world will change, maybe postmodernism will disappear and go away. It will in 20 years, I guarantee you. Now, some of you don't know what postmodernism is yet. Maybe some of you do. In 20 years post modernism, which today is nothing more than a passing fad. Postmodernism will be dead. I will be dead in 20 years. But you you mark that down. Okay, Here's a theory called epistemological relativism. Epistemological relativism is actually the opposite of skepticism. Do you notice that skepticism says no proposition is true? Epistemological relativism says all propositions are true. The difference. There's a difference between epistemological relativism and ethical relativism. Ethical relative relativism teaches that all beliefs about morality are true. And we've had some presidents who believe that way, too. Okay. Everything you believe about morality is right. There are no false beliefs about morality. Epistemological relativism is all beliefs are true. Now I'm going to give you a true story. And this really is true. I taught philosophy for 27 years at a state university in Kentucky. I taught intro to philosophy there, taught 52 students in every class, taught other things, of course. And after the first week of class in the fall, one of my students from a rural area of Kentucky couldn't get home for the weekend. So we stayed in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and he decided to go to a church downtown. And it turned out to be a liberal church downtown, which is where the liberal churches usually are downtown. And this was the sermon topic then warning. The preacher got up and he said, speaking to an audience of hundreds of educated people lawyers, doctors, university professors. His sermon topic was this All religious beliefs are true. There is no such thing as a false religious belief. It was a very short sermon. Why not? The student wanted to get out of that church. He was afraid the Rapture was going, and he didn't want to be caught in that church at the Rapture. Do you understand? You Baptists will understand that. So as soon as the last day, man. Now, why would you say amen in a church service like that? I don't know. I wonder what his scripture text was. The student want to get out of there, Wanted to get out of the church, but he ran into the preacher. And the preacher had a big fancy robe on, and he couldn't get past him. And he didn't want to insult the preacher. But the preacher said, Young man, I can tell you're a college student. You heard my sermon today. What is your religious belief, young man? Because whatever your religious belief is, it's true. I suppose that's a new kind of evangelism, huh? Go up to a bunch of atheistic college students and tell them that whatever they believe is true. The kid did not want to insult the preacher. I do not turn out students who insult other people. I do not do that. You're not laughing, he said. What is my religious belief? He said. Well, sir, my religious belief. My religious. Thank you. Thank you. My religious belief is that you are going to hell. Okay. You are going to hell. And the preacher's face got red. His veins stuck out, you know. He began to spit and she was drooling down the side of his mouth. And the preacher said this. This is truth. This is this. This is the truth. He said. Young man, everybody's religious beliefs are true, except yours. Now, you know, forgive me for using this word, but we're dealing with an idiot here, okay? We really are. Because. Given again the loss of logic as we learn from Aristotle. If the preacher says this all religious beliefs are true, and then he says there is at least one religious belief that's false, he's contradicting himself. Now, what my student didn't know at the moment because he'd only taken 2 hours from me. So I think what could happen to that kid? Well, he did. He ended up listening to me for 50 hours. So he's probably out there changing the world or he's planning corn or something else. I don't know. What the preacher didn't know was what the student didn't know was that this argument that he utilized comes from Plato. Plato wrote a dialog called the Theaters, and he was Plato was dealing with relativists in his day. One of them was named Protagoras. And this is how Plato refuted the relativist. Protagoras said, Everybody what everybody believes is true. Okay, Plato said, I believe you're not. So since you believe that all beliefs are true, then my belief about your being a nut must also be true. See, now, Plato use different language than that. This is logical, self-defeating nonsense. Now, let's keep going here. The next theory we're going to look at is called evidential ism. Now we're going to say a lot about evidential ism later on. Now, here's the best way to summarize evidential ism. It is the claim that it is immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof. It is immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof. Now imagine a young, a young fellow or young lady from a Christian family goes off to college. Might be the University of Florida. Might be Pick your college and comes back after one week, comes back after one week and says, Mom and dad. I have become an evidential list. And mom and dad say, what is an evidential list? Well, he says, mom and dad, if you listen, I'm going to tell you what an evidential test is. All right. An evidential list is a person who believes that it's immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof. Now, mom and Dad, not only am I on evidential list, but I don't believe you and Dad can provide proof for anything you believe about the Christian faith. So, Mom and Dad, unless you can prove to me before I go home to college, before I ever go back to college Monday morning, unless you can prove to me that God exists and that Jesus is the Son of God, that the Bible is the Word of God and everything else. Unless you can prove that to me. I'm afraid I'm going to go back to college, having rejected your faith. Now, what do Mom and Dad do here? They haven't read Nash's books, and I'm smiling. You're supposed to laugh. They haven't heard these tapes, although they might be listening to these tapes right at this moment. What do you do? Here's the thing. You come up with a killer question, and here's the killer question. It is immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof. All right, Junior. Where is your proof for this thesis? Now, let me tell you something. Nobody in the entire history of the universe has ever proven evidential ism. Nobody ever will prove evidential ism, evidential ism as a logically self-defeating theory. Here's the argument. It's immoral to believe anything without sufficient proof. Premise two There is no proof for this claim. Therefore, it's immoral to believe in evidential ism. QED. That's it. The boat is sinking. The rats have left the ship. Why would anyone in his mind continue to hold to this view? Let me explain the difference between saying all S is P and saying some S is P, because it might occur to you sometime in the next 30 minutes that I'm cheating here. Every position that I'm going to refute today takes the form, takes the universal form. All S's P or no s P all rational believes must be supported by evidence. And you're going to notice that the basic reason why all of those universal claims prove to be logically self-defeating or the reason that they can be refuted so easily is because they assume this kind of form. So some of you were going to say, why don't why aren't these people smart enough to move from the universal claim that all S's P or no s P to the more moderate claim that some s P? Here's the reason this will never work To take the more moderate position will turn their belief into something that is trivial. Something that is insignificant. For example, near the end of today's course, we're going to look at a position called deconstruction ism. And deconstruction ISM teaches that it is impossible ever to know the meaning of any written text. It's a universal claim. All right. Now, I don't want to I don't want to kill my jokes that are still coming in the future here. But notice, if if a deconstruction is said, well, that that universal form won't work, why don't we just say that it's impossible to know the meaning of some written texts? Well, that's trivial. We all know texts that can't be understood. Not mine. I'm not laughing because I'm thinking. I'm thinking of texts written by other people. Okay. There are some texts in the Bible that are very hard to understand. No one doubts that there are texts in some book or other that nobody can understand. But that's not what the deconstruction says. The deconstruction is says you can't know the meaning of any written text, which of course, means everything written by the deconstructionist. All right, You can't know what he meant. So obviously there are some times in life when evidence is important. I'm not denying those times. But when somebody says if you can't produce certain kinds of evidence all the time, he has jumped to the universal and his position is logically self refuting. I hope you see that. Okay. I once had an argument with a philosophy professor in Asheville, North Carolina, because I was giving this message and she said, You're oversimplifying. And I said, No, I'm not. She said, Yes, you are. No, I'm not. And that's how it went for 30 minutes. But she was wrong. And I was right. I wasn't oversimplifying. If you use the universal, you're a dead duck. If you use the more moderate form. Nobody cares what you're saying because nobody disagrees. Okay, Now our next point is called scientific positivism. Here's what it looks like right here. It is irrational to believe anything that is not verified by the scientific method. Imagine Junior comes home from college the second week he's been delivered from his evidential ism. But now he comes home and says, Mom and dad, I'm now a scientific positivism. It's irrational to believe anything that is not verified by the scientific method. Now, once again, I'm not quarreling with the scientific method. Scientific methods important. We've learned a lot through science. We've learned how to cure sicknesses. We know how to grow hair sometimes and other things like that. Now, how do you. What's the killer question for this position? What scientific experiment proves scientific positivism? There is not. There never has been. There never will be. This is not an irrefutable claim. It's. So here's the argument. It's irrational to believe anything that cannot be verified by the scientific method promised to the scientific method can't verify positivism. Therefore, it's irrational to believe in positivism. This is logical, self-defeating nonsense. Okay, next. Over here, I'm now going to give you several examples of what we call mythology, AMISOM log y To give you a short definition. Amazon ologist is someone who hates reason. A mixologist is someone who hates logic and masala, just as someone who says logic must be rejected because and then you fill in the blank. I'm going to give you one example of masala g in action. With no doubt there are other forms of it. The example I'm going to look at with you is radical feminism. Now, please understand that there are two kinds of feminism in the world. There is, first of all, equity feminism. That's a polite term for a position that I don't particularly have any quarrel with. Equity Feminism is the belief of many people that women should be treated equally. Well, shucks, I'm not going to quarrel about that. Of course, we all recognize that because of obvious differences, there are some things that men can do, such as play linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers and that women would be wise not to do. We all know that for various differences, we all can do some things better than other people can't. So but I'm not going to quarrel with the equity feminist. But there is a different kind of feminism. It goes by two names gender feminism. And this is largely the territory of people who hate men. I mean, they really hate men. They're trying somehow to find how to make babies without men. All right. And they found some ways. Gender. Feminists think that all men, with the exception of Bill Clinton. For some reason, they like Bill Clinton. Radical feminists, gender feminists think that all men should be put on a spaceship to Mars without any oxygen and then blown up into space. I'm not kidding. Okay. Now, I once met a lady who was taking a master's degree in radical feminism at Wellesley College. I think that's the name of the school. It's in it's in the New England area. I also think it's the alma mater of Mrs. Clinton, but I'm not going to make any further comment about that. I said to this lady, Why would you spend $30,000 to get a master's degree in radical feminism? And here was her answer. I'm a Christian. I want to help these people. And I think I have to know what they believe in order to help them. To which I replied, It isn't that difficult to know what they believe, okay? It is not that difficult. During this master's level course, her professor, a feminist, uttered this sentence Logic must be rejected because it is a tool that male chauvinist use to keep women in oppression. Let's not be mistaken about the fact that there are male chauvinist in the world, really bad guys who oppress and hurt women. I mean, they do. We're not. But the question is, does the existence of men like that? Justify the elimination of logic? I don't think so. Notice something else that this really is an insult to all women. Because there's the radical feminists really believe that women. For women to think logically is somehow contrary to their very nature. That to be irrational is more. In tune with one's feminism. I don't. I don't understand that. I think that's an insult to women. Notice something else, though? You see that little word? Because what The little word. Here's what the little word because tells you it tells you that you're in the presence of a logical argument. The here's the premise Male chauvinist used logic to keep women in oppression. Therefore, logic must be rejected. That's a logical argument. It's a fallacious argument. Anybody who knew logic would never be foolish enough to offer that as an argument. Now listen to the rest of the testimony of this young lady. I wish I could say that she had studied philosophy for me. After this class, she went up to see her professor and she said, May I ask you three questions? Always be polite. So she must have learned that from me. Always be polite. May I ask you three questions? So the feminist professor said, Yes, go ahead. You know my position is impregnable. Ask me anything you want. Okay. First question. Don't you realize how your rejection of logic means that you can never prove that your feminist beliefs are true? When you reject logic, you can never prove that anything you believe is true. Now watch me, because this is what the feminist professor did. She took her two hands and she clapped them up against her face like this. Oh. Now that means one of two things. Either. She had just seen the movie Home Alone. Okay. For people listening to this tape in 30 years. That was a movie made in America about a little boy who shaved his face for the first time, put the shaving lotion on and went, oh, or else no one in all of her academic studies had ever taught her that when you reject logic, you're left without any basis for anything you believe. And if you've ever looked at any feminist curriculum, do you know there's a university in California? It's not far from where I was Sunday. It's the University of Santa Cruz. It's a it's a branch of the University of California. That means it's paid for by taxpayers dollars. They have so many feminist teaching on that campus that they the catalog has over 100 courses in feminism. Now, how can you possibly justify over 100 courses? There are only so many ways in which you can talk about this stuff. We understand. Second point. Don't you realize that when you reject logic, you cannot prove that my Christian beliefs are false? You can't prove that your beliefs are true. You can't prove that my beliefs are false. So here's my third question. Why aren't you a Christian? Boom. All right. Wow. It's quite a quite a gal here. You can't prove your non-Christian beliefs are true. You can't prove my Christian beliefs are false. So what do you got against Christianity? So she really put this professor on the spot and the professor had to think two or 3 minutes. And then finally what she came up with was this. She said, Why am I not a Christian? I know because I just don't like your Christianity. I just don't like it. Isn't that powerful stuff. Often I get up in the middle of the night and I say, How can I refute that teacher? But do you understand? She has no argument. Will the really rationalist please stand up? Here she is. She's reduced her atheism to one's dislike of broccoli. For crying out loud. Radical feminism is a logically self-defeating theory. The last theory we're going to look at is called deconstruction ism. Deconstruct. You can't listen to me. You cannot be a post-modernist unless you're a deconstructionist. You can't be you cannot be a postmodernist and believe in objective logic or believe in objective truth. That's impossible. De Constructionism has become one of the most influential, harebrained ideas ever to come down the pike. Deconstruction ism can be summed up in this definition or this sentence. It is impossible ever to know the meaning of any written text. Let me give you some paraphrases of this and you're going to watch my hips move. Because remember, whenever I talk about other people's nonsense, my hips move. So deconstruction ism also means that all meaning is. Subjective. Don't I do that? Well. I've got that down pat. Some of you, if you want to. If you want to imitate that, you're going to have to come to my office and get some lessons. All meaning is subjective. Here's another thing. A text means whatever it means to you. You know what makes me mad that they didn't teach postmodernism when I was your age really makes me mad because when I took my first literature courses, I had to actually figure out what Shakespeare meant or what Chaucer meant. Now, Chaucer's top book got to get that old English and that bad spelling and all the rest. If you take a literature course from a deconstructionist, how can you get a bad grade If a text means whatever it means to you? How can you get a bad grade Answer Only if you disagree with your professor. Only if you. You admit that you believe the Bible. That'll get your bad grade. But that's the only thing that will. Imagine a freshman college student at the University of Central Florida and this stuff is has taken over just about every English department in America. It is now spread to other departments. Although I have to admit that when sociologists become deconstructionist, that almost has to be an advantage. Okay, maybe that's an improvement in the sociology department. And I'm smirking a little bit here. Okay. So here's a freshman kid. He's at the University of Florida. He's just paid 85 bucks for his literature textbook, which is what they cost now. All right. And he can't wait for this class to start because he really wants to read Shakespeare. He really wants to read Homer. He really wants to read, you know, everything. So the teacher's late. So the student says, I know I'll start reading the first page and here's what he reads in his book. It is impossible ever to know the meaning of any written text. It is impossible to know the meaning of any written text. So he's thumbing through the 600 page book. He comes to the back cover again and he says, 85. Dollars. How did they know what those symbols meant? Why didn't they charge me $0.85 or $0.33? Okay. I met a young lady who was taking an English course from a deconstructionist. She knew the whole course was a total waste of time. Okay. But she. She couldn't. I mean, there were no not there were no professors in that department who were not deconstructionist. So she said, I just got to sit through the class. I won't learn a thing. I'm going to get an A. But then the professor said, it's time for the final exam. Your final exam assignment will be this. I will expect you to write an essay about Moby Dick. Now we all remember Moby Dick. Moby Dick was that black elephant that swam around the Pacific, I think. Or. But again, if there's no difference between being a non B, it doesn't matter what Moby Dick was. Okay, so her first sentence on the final exam was this. Moby Dick is the Republic of Ireland. And she went on for an hour and a half and wrote an essay about the analogies between Moby Dick and the Republic of Ireland. And all Ahab could be Northern Ireland or take your pick. She got back her final exam and she got an A-plus. And underneath the A-plus, the professor wrote, What, a creative essay. And of course, it was a creative essay because it had nothing to do with the book. So nothing to do with Moby Dick. She got an A-plus. Now, in case you want to know, I am not a deconstructionist. And if you mention Moby Dick on anything you write for me, you will not get an A-plus. I'll tell you that. Logical, self-defeating nonsense. Why can't we see that? Now I have two overheads. More on the constructionism. This long quotation comes from a book written by Don Carson. Don Carson teaches at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He has been here during our summers for the last couple of years. He's very popular teacher here. Our students love him and rightfully so. Don is a great New Testament scholar. He wrote a book called The Gagging of God, and this quotation comes from his book. He talks about an imaginary Christian who goes off to college. And let's just read it, okay? Miss Christian, I'm sorry I got the wrong page up there first, but what difference does it make? What difference does it make? Okay. Miss Christian goes off to the local state university, full of zeal and the knowledge of a few fundamental truths. She may have been president of the youth group in her Baptist church or her PTA church or whatever else. There she will not find lecturers who will devote much time to overturning her truths. That's true. The day in which professors actually make frontal assaults against Christian students that day has passed under postmodernism and deconstruction ism. You. You've got other techniques. Rather, she will find many lecturers convincing her that the meaning in her religion, as in all religion, is merely communal bias. The bias of her community, the bias of her family, and her little church group and her group of friends. And therefore the meaning in her, her and her religion is relative and subjective. I can imagine now some deconstructionist English professor who doesn't believe anything anymore saying, Well, dearie, I'm so glad you've got a worldview. I'm so glad you've got something that is important to you, even though, of course, it can't be objectively true. No religion, these people say, can make valid claims of a transcendent nature. What are claims of a transcendent nature? Truths that are true for everybody at all times and everywhere? The truths of mathematics are transcendent. The truths of the Christian gospel are transcendent truths. God exists. Human beings are sinners and need a savior. That's true for everybody. Truth, whatever it is these people teach, does not reside in an object or idea or statement or affirmation about reality, historical or otherwise, that can be known by finite human beings. Rather truth. Get this. Get this. Truth consists of fallible, faulty opinions. Now you've got to go back in history a long way to find anybody dumb enough to call that truth. You've got to go back to the Greece, the Athens of Socrates and Plato. We call those people Sophists. Truth consists of fallible, faulty opinions held by finite nodes who themselves look at things that certain way only because they belong to a certain section of society. My goodness. Now Carson keeps going. I mean, you know, I've read this stuff 100 times and I still can't believe I know Carson is right. I know these people exist, but I can't believe anybody being dumb enough to teach this and believe it. Because this this counts against everything that these people believe. Why should you? Why should you believe them? So Miss Kristen is troll told a trifle condescendingly that if her religion helps her, she should be grateful, but that no intelligent person this side of Derrida through Crow and Fish could possibly believe that her beliefs have a transcendent claim on everybody everywhere. Now, do you know who Derrida, Franco and Fish are? They are the three amigos of deconstruction, as Stanley Fish was for many years, the head of the English department at Duke University. He was hired to teach at Duke precisely to introduce his ideas into the curriculum. Okay. Sometimes people ask me if I have read every deconstructionist book. To which I answer proudly. No. Here's why. Whenever I pick up a deconstructionist book, I apply their own principle. A text means whatever it means to you. All right. So if this is if this is Jacques Derrida's, one of his books I'm reading. I mean, let's just. Here's what I'm. Here's. Here's the the meaning I'm getting from this page written by Jacques Derrida. Nash is right. Nash is right. Doggone, every sentence has the same meaning. Nash is right. Oh, here's a different. Deconstruction ism is false. Now you can only read that so long and you get kind of tired of it. You know, every time I open a deconstructionist book, that's what it means to me. Okay. Thus, without overtly denying her faith, Ms.. Christian discovers that its vitality has been sapped. That's how these people are attacking the faith these days. They're not. They can't prove that our beliefs are false. They so they just try to trivialize it. Our faith has been relative by trivialize, marginalized, and without ever having had a single one of its major tenants overturn by historical or other argument, the whole edifice of Christian truth has been detached from the objective status it once held. And Ms.. Christian drifts off, and it may take years before she thinks seriously about Jesus again, if she ever does. I pastored three churches in my lifetime. A Baptist church. Amen. A Presbyterian church man. And a United Church of Christ. The most liberal denomination in America, although the liberal Southern Baptists are getting to that point. I was stated supply of a Presbyterian church in Fall River, Massachusetts. And the leading. I mean, if I could have looked at our young people and I could have said the one kid that I'm confident will never lose it is this young lady. If Kathy ever hears this tape. She won't be surprised because she knows how much we love her. Kathy's mother. We love that family so much, and we still do. If they ever listen to this tape was from Alabama, and so she wanted her baby girl to go to college at I'm going to name the school Sanford University. Southern Baptist School in Birmingham, Alabama. Okay. And I didn't fully understand then how liberalism had crept into the Southern Baptist Convention. In fact, I didn't understand it until I moved to Kentucky in 1964. In four years, that bright, promising great young lady had had her faith destroyed by the professors at Stanford University. And if any attorney from Stanford University listens to this tape, I'll be glad to testify in court. Okay. We'll get Kathy to come down and and tell what Sanford's faculty did to her. Kathy never really gave up her faith. But just like the young lady we read about, he or she wandered in the wilderness for a long time, and my wife and I happened to go back to Fall River, Massachusetts, five, six years ago, where I spoke somewhere and we took Kathy out to eat. Now, I do get emotional sometimes, all right. And I can feel it coming here. And some of you know that the only way I can counteract this emotion is if I see a magic word. And that magic word is Cleveland. All right. So I think I'm under control here. Kathy said to us, she said, Dr. Nash, I know you've worried about me for a long time, but I want you to know that I'm back. I'm back. But doggone that college, I'd better stop talking about that college. But that college is not alone. All right. There are so-called Christian colleges all over America that are basically doing the same blasted thing. I had a student. Several years ago. I forget his name. I could probably look it up. He came in here a week or two before graduation was senior year, and he told me this story. I don't know if I've ever told this story before. This was when we were on the old campus in Maitland and he said, Do you mind if I close your door, the door to your office? And I said, No, go ahead. And I got I began to brace myself because usually when students ask to close the door, they want to tell me off, okay? They want to give it to me. Not that I deserve it. So he closed the door and this is what he said. You know, he said, my first year here I was all right. I was all right. I took the history philosophy course and I took apologetics. And I was right on track with where I wanted to go. But then he said, during my second year here, I began to play around with postmodernism. And you know what happened? I lost my call. I lost my zeal. And I, I, I thought about dropping out of school because there was no longer. Once I made a commitment to postmodernism, there was no longer any reason for me to go into the ministry. And then he said before the start of some time, maybe during his senior year, he said, I remembered your book, Christian Faith and Historical Understanding, which used to be a basic text for this course, but now available only in Korean, only in Korea. Well, they've got good taste in Korea. Okay. That book is out of print in English. And he said that reading that book reminded me of the solid historical and philosophical grounds for the resurrection. He used the same expression. I'm back and I'm ready to go to work for the Lord. This is a people can understand me, but I think this stuff comes from the pit. I really do. I really do. I think it is the most dangerous stuff that's infecting the church right now. And of course, this is a free country. And you're welcome to disagree with me. But just wait 20 years. And scholars in 20 years will look back and say, what possessed people in America to believe that that stuff had anything important to say? And even if they thought it had anything important to say, what did it mean? All right. What did it mean?