Why Couldn’t Sproul and Bahnsen Be Friends?

In regard to Apologetics, why couldn’t RC Sproul and Greg Bahnsen agree?

Sproul spoke highly of Bahnsen. They did a friendly debate once. Sproul thought Bahnsen was the ablest of Van Til’s interpreters.

Sproul’s main critique of Bahnsen is that he commits the fallacy of petitio principii (begging the question) by attempting to assert that we should start with knowledge of God.

We are not God. If we were, then we could start with knowledge of God. But, since we are created beings, we start with knowledge of ourselves.

While it is certainly true that God is first in the order of being, God is not first in our order of knowing. Bahnsen confuses the order of being with the order of knowing.

See Sproul explain all these points here.

Other Resources:

Classical Apologetics, by RC Sproul (book)

How I Got from Alpha to Omega — A Rundown on this Month’s Presuppositionalism Discussions

Revelation and Responsibility

Reason and Faith in the Gospels: A Scriptural Guide


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