The Answer To Irrationalism

Set Forth Your Case, by Clark Pinnock (Craig, 1967, 94 pp., $1.50), is reviewed, by Robert L. Cleath, assistant editor,CHRISTIANITY TODAY.

Many men of our day, bound by the strait jacket of antisupernatural thought, are coming to believe that life is absurd. In a desperate quest to find meaning and satisfaction, they are retreating into the catacombs of subjective irrationalism. To show contemporaries that irrationalism and despair need not plague men and that the Gospel of Christ offers a sure hope based on substantial evidence, Clark Pinnock has written this brief, scintillating apologetic work, Set Forth Your Case.

This thirty-year-old theologian from New Orleans Baptist Seminary considers apologetics—the defense of the truthfulness of the Christian religion—an indispensable tool for evangelism. Its intent, he claims, is “not to coerce people to accept the Christian faith but to make it possible for them to do so intelligently. The data we possess about the gospel is sufficient to make it sensible for the non-Christian to begin his search for the ultimate clue with Christianity.” Although he is aware that without the convicting and illuminating action of the Holy Spirit even the soundest apologetic has no power to make a man a Christian, Pinnock rests his case on the historical events and biblical revelation that provide a rational basis for Christianity. He refuses to surrender the belief that “the heart cannot delight in what the mind rejects as false.”

Pinnock presents his apologetic against the backdrop of current humanistic philosophy and theology. He claims that modern theology has sold out to a philosophical irrationalism that separates the “lower story” of reason, fact, and history from ...

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