The Necessity of the Concept of the Christian God for Mathematics
Charles Jackson, M.S.
My purpose in writing is to deliver the foundation for the philosophy of mathematics. That is an offensive thing to write. If it be offensive to you, then you are making an assumption about philosophy which is itself a philosophical judgment. It is therefore open to philosophical refutation, and would be refuted, I maintain. It should also be noted that I am not a foundationalist in the traditional sense.
I believe that I am delivering the very answer to the problems of philosophy of math which is so sorely lacking. The idea is that after philosophers of math have sampled naturalism in mathematics, related theories from cognitive science, indispensability, the sociological attempt, constructivism, formalism, nominalism, fictionalism, structuralism, intuitionism, platonism, and isms ad nauseum, and recognized the ultimate futility of each, they would find MIC and develop a Christian philosophy of math. I will not address these isms here, except to say that they all arbitrarily (i.e. without warrant) and/or self-contradictorily assume the Inductive Principle.
It is not my purpose to impress anyone with my knowledge of philosophy, philosophy of math, history of math, or math. The absence of mathematical notation here will seem very strange. But it only seems to be a requirement that any writer on philosophy of math throw around some mathematical notation. Okay, that’s enough intro.
II. The Necessity of the Concept of the Christian God for the Intelligibility of Human Experience
The concept of the Christian God is the necessary condition for the intelligibility of human experience; therefore, the concept of the Christian God is the necessary condition for the intelligibility of mathematical human experience.
First, the former claim. Reformulating Cornelius Van Til’s Transcendental Argument for the Existence of God,
The proof of the truth of Christianity is that unless its truth be presupposed, human experience could not be intelligible.
This is only one of any number of ways to state the proof. I might have offered an induction-focused proof.
The proof is valid. Let
p = Christianity is true = The Christian God exists
q = human experience is intelligible
If not p, then not q.
If not not q, then not not p; therefore, p.
The opponent of the Christian apologist immediately seeks to produce another worldview which is sufficient to account for human experience. But any proposal he can produce, being expressed in human language, arbitrarily assumes the Inductive Principle (here I am not referring to the Principle of Mathematical Induction) without providing any warrant for it. According to the Christian worldview, the God Who controls every detail of creation and history reveals that He uses means according to the Inductive Principle.
According to the Christian apologist, God in His Word the Bible breathes out a comprehensive worldview sufficient for human experience. We either take it as it is revealed, or we don’t. If we don’t, then we must deviate from it on the basis of some independent worldview, the sufficiency of which (including but not nearly limited to a foundation for Induction) we must establish. But, given any belief which might be encompassed by such a worldview, we finite humans (as unaided with respect to our finitude) cannot account for any fact outside our limited sphere of knowledge and control, which fact may represent a defeater for that belief. So, on the assumption of the denial of the Christian worldview, which encompasses an exclusivity clause with respect to sufficiency for human experience, knowledge of any kind is unwarranted. Any objection to the Christian worldview is a non-starter. Christianity, with its Omniscient, self-revelatory God, is the only worldview with a chance to be sufficient. And it is.
III. The Necessity of the Concept of the Christian God for the Intelligibility of Human Mathematical Experience
The necessity of the concept of the Christian God for the intelligibility of human mathematical experience follows directly from the necessity of the concept of the Christian God for the intelligibility of human experience.
The concept of the Christian God is the precondition for the intelligibility of human mathematical experience: mathematical knowledge, mathematical practice, etc.
So the concept of the Christian God is the precondition for the intelligibility of human mathematical experience. The foundation of the philosophy of math has been delivered. To Him be all glory.