Fideistic Apologetics Defined
The limits of human reason
What indeed has Athens to do with Jerusalem? What concord is there between the Academy and the Church? what between heretics and Christians? Our instruction comes from “the porch of Solomon,”who had himself taught that “the Lord should be sought in simplicity of heart.”Away with all attempts to produce a mottled Christianity of Stoic, Platonic, and dialectic composition! We want no curious disputation after possessing Christ Jesus, no inquisition after enjoying the gospel! With our faith, we desire no further belief. For this is our palmary faith, that there is nothing which we ought to believe besides.Tertullian, “The Prescription against Heretics,” in Latin Christianity: Its Founder, Tertullian, ed. Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, trans. Peter Holmes, vol. 3, The Ante-Nicene Fathers (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Company, 1885), 246.
“And the Son of God died; it is by all means to be believed, because it is absurd.”Tertullian, “On the Flesh of Christ,” in Latin Christianity: Its Founder, Tertullian, ed. Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, trans. Peter Holmes, vol. 3, The Ante-Nicene Fathers (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Company, 1885), 525.
The Insurmountable Epistemic Obstacle
The Fideistic Alternative
While acknowledging that all people are inescapably related to God and endowed with an innate sense of his infinite power and moral order, they were nonetheless insistent that because sin so utterly defaces the imago Dei we are rendered incapable of laying hold of God’s redeeming revelation in Jesus Christ apart from a special illumination of the Holy Spirit. Reason needs not to be cultivated but converted; then faithful reasoning can throw light upon the mysteries of the faith but can never exhaust them.Donald G. Bloesch, A Theology of Word & Spirit: Authority & Method in Theology (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2005), 36.
Weaknesses of Fideistic Apologetics (See Boa - Faith Has Its Reasons)