Louis Berkhof – The Great Presupposition of Theology

9 Jan
1873-1957. Reformed Systematic theologian. President of Calvin Seminary.

1873-1957. Reformed Systematic theologian. President of Calvin Seminary.

For us the existence of God is the great presupposition of theology. There is no sense in speaking of the knowledge of God, unless it may be assumed that God exists. The presupposition of Christian theology is of a very definite type. The assumption is not merely that there is something, some idea or ideal, some power or purposeful tendency, to which the name of God may be applied, but that there is a self-existent, self-conscious, personal Being, which is the origin of all things, and which transcends the entire creation, but is at the same time immanent in every part of it. The question may be raised, whether this is a reasonable assumption, and this question may be answered in the affirmative. This does not mean, however, that the existence of God is capable of a logical demonstration that leaves no room whatever for doubt; but it does mean that, while the truth of God’s existence is accepted by faith, this faith is based on reliable information. While Reformed theology regards the existence of God as an entirely reasonable assumption, it does not claim the ability to demonstrate this by rational argumentation. Dr. Kuyper speaks as follows of the attempt to do this: “The attempt to prove God’s existence is either useless or unsuccessful. It is useless if the searcher believes that God is a rewarder of those who seek Him. And it is unsuccessful if it is an attempt to force a person who does not have this pistis by means of argumentation to an acknowledgment in a logical sense.”

~Louis Berkhof~




Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans publishing co., 1938), 20–21.

Books by Louis Berkhof

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Louis Berkhof on Logos Bible Software

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2 Responses to “Louis Berkhof – The Great Presupposition of Theology”

  1. lacykitkat January 9, 2014 at 6:56 am #

    Reblogged this on HE STILL SPEAKS!.

  2. mydelightandmycounsellors January 9, 2014 at 10:55 am #

    Reblogged this on My Delight and My Counsellors.

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