Gordon H. Clark
Gordon Haddon Clark (August 31, 1902 – April 9, 1985) was an American philosopher and Calvinist theologian. He was a primary advocate for the idea of presuppositional apologetics and was chairman of the Philosophy Department at Butler University for 28 years. He was an expert in pre-Socratic and ancient philosophy and was noted for his rigor in defending propositional revelation against all forms of empiricism and rationalism, in arguing that all truth is propositional and in applying the laws of logic. His theory of knowledge is sometimes called Scripturalism.
Clark was raised in a Christian home and studied Calvinist thought from a young age. In 1924, he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor's degree in French and earned his doctorate in Philosophy from the same institution in 1929. The following year, he studied at the Sorbonne.
He began teaching at the University of Pennsylvania after receiving his bachelor's degree and also taught at Reformed Episcopal Seminary in Philadelphia. In 1936, he accepted a professorship in Philosophy at Wheaton College, Illinois, where he remained until 1943, when he accepted the Chairmanship of the Philosophy Department at Butler University in Indianapolis. In 1973, he retired from Butler University and taught at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Georgia, and Sangre de Cristo Seminary in Westcliffe, Colorado.
In 1944, Clark was ordained a Minister in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. (He had been ordained a Ruling Elder in the Presbyterian Church in the 1920s.) In the years that followed, Clark would change denominations several times: first to the United Presbyterian Church of North America in 1948 following the Clark-Van Til Controversy, and then to the Reformed Presbyterian Church, General Synod in 1957, where Clark was instrumental in arranging a merger with another Presybterian denomination to form the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod in 1965. When this last denomination merged with the Presbyterian Church in America in 1983, Clark refused to join the PCA and instead entered the Covenant Presbytery in 1984.
He died in 1985 and was buried near Westcliffe, Colorado.