November 24, 2020

The Council

Proclaiming the truth to the world.

Is Agnosticism Possible?

Jimmy Stephens shares his thoughts on the issue of whether someone can be an agnostic:

The agnostic is committed to the position that he does not know whether God exists. With respect to worldviews, the agnostic is pluralistic, believing that no worldview sufficiently answers whether God exists or not, at least none that he knows of, at least not yet. All the while, agnosticism presupposes the autonomy of humankind. The agnostic holds that he does not know whether God exists, that he does not have access to any worldview capable of answering the question, and that in the meantime, he is quite capable of reasoning, of analyzing worldviews, and adjudicating about facts whether they support God’s existence.

Quintessentially, the agnostic defense of autonomy is that there might be a worldview out there that explains the independence of reason from God. Somewhere across the buffet of worldviews sits that special sauce that proves man’s ability to reason without relying on God’s revelation, and the agnostic has caught a whiff of it. The problem is that this defense is self-defeating.

In principle, the argument is that because it is possible there is an explanation yet to be found or offered why autonomy is the case, agnosticism is warranted. It is then alleged that the Christian has the duty of disproving this possibility. Instead, the Christian replies in kind. It is possible there is an explanation yet to be found or offered why agnosticism is incoherent or otherwise impossible. Therefore, it is up to the agnostic to show otherwise and thus directly or indirectly defend autonomy.