Truth with Love: The Apologetics of Francis Schaeffer
Bryan A. Follis Crossway 208 pages $15.99
Bryan A. Follis says an examination of Francis Schaeffer's books and his relationships at L'Abri revealscontrary to his reputationthat Schaeffer was concerned about both truth and love. Follis quotes Schaeffer's remark that people must come to "understand that the gospel is truth on the basis of good and sufficient reason," and also traces Schaeffer's emphasis on love to his 1951 "spiritual crisis" (involving dissatisfaction with his fundamentalist roots in the Bible Presbyterian Church).
Follis, rector of All Saints' Church, Belfast, Northern Ireland, zealously defends Schaeffer against the charge, leveled by Clark Pinnock and others, of overemphasizing reason. However, his rebuttal is clouded by inadequate definition of their critique.
Follis also resists Thomas V. Morris's contention that Schaeffer doesn't provide evidence adequate to support his claim that Christianity must be true. Morris objects to the must on the grounds that Schaeffer's arguments don't rule out all alternatives to Christianity. He thinks Schaeffer's arguments would be stronger if they instead demonstrated the possibility or plausibility of Christianity relative to other possible explanations of human experience.
Still, this book is valuable insofar as it shows the importance of Schaeffer's contributions despite the limitations of his methods and arguments. It would have been more effective if the author (who was brought back to Christ through a Schaeffer film series) had been more willing to acknowledge Schaeffer's shortcomings.
James E. Taylor; Professor of Philosophy, Westmont College
Q&A: Bryan A. Follis Interview ...1
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