Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity

Philosophical and theological essays on the trinity

Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity includes a selection of the most important recent philosophical work on this topic, accompanied with a variety of compelling new essays by philosophers and theologians to further the discussion. The book is divided into four parts, the first three dealing in turn with the three most prominent models for understanding the relations between the Persons of the Trinity: Social Trinitarianism, Latin Trinitarianism, and Relative Trinitarianism. Each section includes essays by both proponents and critics of the relevant model. The volume concludes with a section containing essays by theologians reflecting on the current state of the debate.

Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity includes a selection of the most important recent philosophical work on this topic, accompanied with a variety of compelling new essays by philosophers and theologians to further the discussion. The book is divided into four parts, the first three dealing in turn with the three most prominent models for understanding the relations between the Persons of the Trinity: Social Trinitarianism, Latin Trinitarianism, and Relative Trinitarianism. Each section includes essays by both proponents and critics of the relevant model. The volume concludes with a section containing essays by theologians reflecting on the current state of the debate.

Annotation: This is the first full-length study of the doctrine of the Trinity from the standpoint of analytic philosophical theology. William Hasker reviews the evidence concerning fourth-century pro-Nicene trinitarianism in the light of recent developments in the scholarship on this period, arguing for particular interpretations of crucial concepts. He then reviews and criticizes recent work on the issue of the divine three-in-oneness, including systematic theologians such as Barth, Rahner, Moltmann, and Zizioulas, and analytic philosophers of religion such as Leftow, van Inwagen, Craig, and Swinburne. In the final part of the book he develops a carefully articulated social doctrine of the Trinity which is coherent, intelligible, and faithful to scripture and tradition.

Philosophical And Theological Essays On The Trinity.

Christians believe that is a Trinity of Persons, each omnipotent, omniscient and wholly benevolent, co-equal and fully divine. There are not three gods, however, but one God in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Prima facie, the doctrine more commonly known as the Trinity seems gratuitous: why multiply divine beings beyond necessity—especially since one God is hard enough to believe in? For Christians, however, the Trinity doctrine is neither gratuitous nor unmotivated. Claims about Christ’s divinity are difficult to reconcile with the Christian doctrine that there is just one God: Trinitarian theology is an attempt to square the Christian conviction that Jesus is the Son of God, fully divine yet distinct from his Father, with the Christian commitment to monotheism. Nevertheless, while the Trinity doctrine purports to solve a range of theological puzzles it poses a number of intriguing logical difficulties akin to those suggested by the identity of spatio-temporal objects through time and across worlds, puzzle cases of personal identity, and problems of identity and constitution. Philosophical discussions of the Trinity have suggested solutions to the Trinity puzzle comparable to solutions proposed to these classic identity puzzles. When it comes to the Trinity puzzle, however, one must determine whether such solutions accord with theological constraints.

Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity - …

The first reason is that atheism was the predominant opinion amongEnglish language philosophers throughout much of that century. Asecond, quite related reason is that philosophers in the twentiethcentury regarded theological language as either meaningless, or, atbest, subject to scrutiny only insofar as that language had a bearingon religious practice. The former belief (i.e., that theologicallanguage was meaningless) was inspired by a tenet of logicalpositivism, according to which any statement that lacks empiricalcontent is meaningless. Since much theological language, for example,language describing the doctrine of the Trinity, lacks empiricalcontent, such language must be meaningless. The latter belief,inspired by Wittgenstein, holds that language itself only has meaningin specific practical contexts, and thus that religious language wasnot aiming to express truths about the world which could be subjectedto objective philosophical scrutiny.

Philosophical And Theological Essays On The Trinity

Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity Edited by Thomas McCall and Michael Rea

In the last forty years, however, philosophers of religion havereturned to the business of theorizing about many of the traditionaldoctrines of Christianity and have begun to apply the tools ofcontemporary philosophy in ways that are somewhat more eclectic thanwhat was envisioned under the Augustinian or Thomistic models. Inkeeping with the recent academic trend, contemporary philosophers ofreligion have been unwilling to maintain hard and fast distinctionsbetween the two disciplines. As a result, it is often difficult inreading recent work to distinguish what the philosophers are doingfrom what the theologians (and philosophers) of past centuriesregarded as strictly within the theological domain. Indeed,philosophers and theologians alike are now coming to use the term“analytic theology” to refer to theological work that aimsto explore and unpack theological doctrines in a way that draws on theresources, methods, and relevant literature of contemporary analyticphilosophy. The use of this term reflects the heretofore largelyunacknowledged reality that the sort of work now being done under thelabel “philosophical theology” is asmuch theology as it is philosophical.

Philosophical and theological essays on the trinity pdf

Ronald Feenstra is co-editor with Cornelius Plantinga, Jr., of Trinity, Incarnation, and Atonement: Philosophical and Theological Essays.


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Philosophical and Theological Essays on the Trinity includes a selection of the most important recent philosophical work on this topic, accompanied with a variety of compelling new essays by philosophers and theologians to further the discussion. The book is divided into four parts, the first three dealing in turn with the three most prominent models for understanding the relations between the Persons of the Trinity: Social Trinitarianism, Latin Trinitarianism, and Relative Trinitarianism. Each section includes essays by both proponents and critics of the relevant model. The volume concludes with a section containing essays by theologians reflecting on the current state of the debate.

Browse and Read Philosophical And Theological Essays On The Trinity Philosophical And Theological Essays On The Trinity Challenging the …

Certain neo-Scholastic philosophers and theologians (in particular those representing the Louvain school), while regarding Thomism as the truest and most adequate philosophy available, argued against the possibility or desirability of an explicitly Christian philosophy. Several concerns marked their position, not least of which was maintaining strict distinction between the disciplines of philosophy and theology, whose formulation in their eyes was a central accomplishment of Thomas Aquinas’ thought. Philosophy was to be, indeed could only be, an activity deriving from and employing only purely natural reason, evidence and principles, distinct from theology in which Christian revelation and faith play a role. Neo-Scholastics worried over any implication that human reason might not be essentially the same in the non-believer as in the believer, especially since this would seem to render discussion and comparison with non-Christian philosophies problematic. Their rallying point was the view that Thomism was a genuine philosophy precisely because it was a purely rational philosophy, independently arriving at coincidence with the truths of Christian faith and doctrine.