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Philosophia Christi

Volume 17, Issue 1, 2015

Bradley N. Seeman
Pages 105-126
DOI: 10.5840/pc20151717

Idolatry and the End of Apologetics
On Some Uses and Limitations of Continental Philosophy in Apologetics

Myron Penner’s work shows some ways continental philosophy could strengthen apologetics. In particular, continental philosophy can serve what Francis Schaeffer called “the final apologetic” by exposing idols that keep us from living lives of “costly, observable love.” Yet continental philosophy can also imperil apologetics and theology. The worst danger stems from what I call the “idolatry of linguistic license,” a type of idolatry where linguistic criticism denies God a place in the normative community of speakers. Although the idolatry of linguistic license mars some recent critiques of apologetics inspired by continental philosophy, apologetics would still profit from measured use of continental philosophy.

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