the academic study of God and religion

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18
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7answers
482 views

Is Christianity with reason wrong?

Is it wrong to try to reach God with reason instead of faith? I really believe that logical reasoning is the way to get closer to God but since I was a kid my parents and relatives keep telling me ...
18
votes
2answers
394 views

What are the primary differences and implications of a propitiatory view of the atonement versus an expiatory view?

Western theology tends to view atonement as propitiation, while Eastern tends to view it as expiation. What are the primary differences and implications of each perspective? Are they antithetical or ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the difference between 'Biblical' and 'Systematic' theology?

Particularly among Protestant traditions, it is common to classify books and classes that cover broad looks at theological issues as either "Biblical' or 'Systematic'. Sometimes this is even extended ...
15
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the significance of the Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden?

If Adam and Eve were created perfect and without death (immortal), then what is the significance and purpose of the Tree of Life in the middle of the Garden of Eden?
15
votes
1answer
305 views

In Theistic Evolution, when did the alleged evolutionary animal/ape/man become accountable for his sins?

One answer to this previous question asks, One of the problems I have with theistic evolution is: when did this alleged evolutinary animal/ape/man become accountable for his sins? [sic] It would ...
14
votes
4answers
641 views

Why are certain non-harmful behaviors considered sins?

I would like to hear your response on this. In general, there exist a set of behaviors that Christians consider sinful, though these behaviors may not be observed to harm anybody (even the person ...
14
votes
4answers
326 views

Is God just and/or merciful?

I am told, repeatedly, with great intensity and sincerity that YHVH / the LORD is kind and merciful, forgiving of all sins. Now, I read the Bible enough. God's main demonstrations of power seem to ...
14
votes
2answers
341 views

Does the triune God have will by nature, or by persons?

Given the triune God, one nature and three persons, do they experience their will in their singular nature or in their separate persons? That is, do they share one will, or does each have a separate ...
12
votes
6answers
978 views

What are the theological implications/problems with theistic evolution?

Theistic evolution holds that God used evolution to create mankind. It seems to follow then that this view must also hold the creation account in Genesis to be unhistorical. So, Adam and Eve may ...
12
votes
1answer
383 views

Are there any Protestant beliefs which have their roots in Mormon doctrines?

Protestants often associate Mormonism with outlandish1 doctrines like innumerable Gods, people living on the sun, or special underwear that you can't take off2. But I am curious what lies at the ...
11
votes
4answers
428 views

Is the LDS's view of Trinity/Godhead considered monotheistic or polytheistic?

With the LDS view that the Trinity is three beings would that mean they (LDS) are monotheistic or polytheistic?
11
votes
1answer
189 views

How do the Dead Sea Scrolls impact modern apologetics?

I understand that the 1946 discovery of almost a thousand ancient texts in caves on the West Bank has had a significant impact, I'm just trying to figure out what specific changes the discovery has ...
10
votes
2answers
323 views

What is replacement theology, and why do I hear it used with a negative connotation?

Occasionally when discussing the modern nation of Israel I hear ideas accused of being "Replacement Theology". What is Replacement Theology, and why is it almost always used in a negative light?
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Why did God describe the light as being good, but not the darkness?

In the account of creation in Genesis 1, it seems that God describes many of the things He creates as being "good". Verse 2 indicates that prior to there being light, there was "darkness over the ...
10
votes
2answers
148 views

What test is used to determine communicability of an attribute of God

I understand that some attributes of God are said to be communicable, meaning that they can, in some measure, be attributes of men as well. For example, God's holiness is said to be communicable ...
9
votes
3answers
367 views

Is the nation of Israel itself a type of Christ and, if so, how?

There is a branch of theological study devoted to archetypes, or types of Christ. Some of these are explicitly defined in the New Testament, as when Jesus speaks of the manna from heaven and calls ...
9
votes
2answers
441 views

On what basis does the Catholic Church teach that women cannot be ordained?

The Catholic Church maintains that it does not have the authority to ordain women. I.e., the Church can't ordain women. It's assumed then that God set a precedent or gave a mandate to ordain only men. ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Did Dante's Divine Comedy describe or define Christian views on the afterlife?

Dante's Divine Comedy, the 14th century epic poem describing a journey through the various levels of Hell, Purgatory and Heaven and the persons or types of persons who inhabit each level (including ...
8
votes
2answers
912 views

Heaven/Paradise/Sheol, Hell/Hades/The Lake of Fire

What is the difference between Heaven/Paradise/Sheol How about Hell/Hades/The Lake of Fire? Are they synonyms, are they different places?
8
votes
1answer
631 views

Does Roman Catholic Church recognize some Eastern Orthodox Saints?

I heard that in some of Catholic churches (I mean parishes) in Europe there are icons of Russian Saints, such as Seraphim of Sarov, for example (may be I'm wrong, I personally haven't seen this). So ...
8
votes
1answer
461 views

Who uses the term “God-talk”, and what do they mean?

I've seen many books and articles that use the word God-talk. This seems, often, to be used as a friendlier alternative to theology, which comes from the Greek θεός (theos) for God, and λόγος (logos) ...
7
votes
5answers
293 views

Is there any holy language for Christians according to words of Jesus Christ and the apostles?

The Jews have Hebrew. Muslims have Arabic. Hindus have Sanskrit. For Christians, is there any holy language? Is there any holy language for Christians according to words of Jesus Christ and the ...
7
votes
4answers
405 views

Is Matthew 24:36 contrary to trinitarianism?

In Matthew 24:36 Jesus is quoted saying, that even he does not know when the end of the world will come, only God (the Father) alone. I'm interested whether this might be in any conflict with the ...
7
votes
1answer
258 views

Why was Christ's sacrifice such a big cost? [duplicate]

Many hymns refer to the immense cost that Jesus paid on the cross. In one sense this is consistent with evangelical theology in that Jesus was taking the sins of the world upon himself. But some ...
7
votes
1answer
173 views

Which denominations follow prosperity theology?

In the comments of an answer to another question, the topic of prosperity theology was raised, and someone stated that a large portion of Christianity is in some way supportive of prosperity theology. ...
7
votes
1answer
749 views

What does the Bible say about a father walking his daughter down the aisle at her wedding?

I believe this came about as a Jewish tradition. Why is this done and what does it symbolize? Is a father walking his daughter down the aisle at her wedding a biblical tradition? What is the father's ...
7
votes
2answers
719 views

What is the official Roman Catholic opinion on Swedenborg?

What is the official opinion of the Catholic Church on works of Emanuel Swedenborg, especially Heaven and Hell? I'm interested in the opinion of the Catholic Church, but any others will be also ...
7
votes
0answers
186 views

Is there anything in the Bible that suggests joy in Heaven is greater than best of Earthly joy? [duplicate]

Writer Randy Alcorn suggests we CAN imagine Heaven. In fairness to his viewpoint the 'Eye hath not seen nor ears heard..." quote from Corintheans (if fully read through) does NOT mean we cannot ...
6
votes
7answers
2k views

If Jesus is God, who/where does Jesus pray to?

I realize that some of Christianity believe God and Jesus to be one being, whereas some believe them to be separate and distinct beings. I come from the background of the latter group, which reasoning ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the significance of the Bible to Christianity?

What exactly is the significance of the Bible to Christianity? Is Christianity defined by the Bible? If so, is belief in the Bible the most important (or foundational) belief in Christianity? Is ...
6
votes
3answers
262 views

How can I understand the evolution of the Egyptians as a race in the Old Testament?

The Old Testament states that God created the world and God created man. We see the lineage of Adam and Eve, to Abraham, and so forth while the Hebrew nation is created. Then, seemingly from left ...
6
votes
3answers
294 views

Why are some denominations so against the idea of personal revelation as a source of Truth?

In the spirit of On what basis do some denominations prohibit Christians from drinking alcohol? and Why do Young-Earth Creationists make such a big deal about the YEC view First, what this question ...
6
votes
2answers
166 views

Where is God according to Christianity?

Sometimes to make the idea controversial, atheists depict God as a humanly being residing in the space and then compare him to other fairy tale creatures. To counter this, some sort of logical or may ...
6
votes
2answers
548 views

Is Set Theory anti-Christian?

I read this article entitled "What do Christian fundamentalists have against set theory" and was shocked since I grew up (Grade 1 - 8) in several (what could be described as) ...
6
votes
1answer
150 views

What happened to the resurrected after death?

In the Bible (primarily the New Testament), we see numerous people who were raised from the dead. Drawing from this link, we see the following were raised from death: Widow of Zarephath's son (1 ...
5
votes
6answers
997 views

Is “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” preaching heresy?

I love the song "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing." Its beautiful, and the backstory is pretty amazing. My problem is that I always shudder every time I sing the third verse. It says, "O to grace, ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Cross with P loop atop

I have seen in a church a cross with a loop off the top that makes the vertical look like a P. Does this symbol have a name? What is its meaning? From what does it derive? Can you supply any more ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What is giving up free will and giving it to Jesus mean?

Is there a majority opinion as to what giving up free will and giving it to Jesus means? What does this action look like? Are there any real life examples?
5
votes
2answers
182 views

Which denominations follow “queer theology”?

According to this page, it briefly describes this: Queer theology begins with an assumption that gender non-conformity and homosexual desire have always been present in human history, and are ...
5
votes
2answers
249 views

If you don't believe in the inerrancy of scripture, on what basis can you interpret scripture?

I know there are several Christian traditions that do not claim that scripture is inerrant (and therefore do not interpret everything in the Bible literally). If this is the case, then it seems like a ...
5
votes
1answer
108 views

What is “dominion theology”?

I've read a little bit about "dominion theology", and don't feel I understand it. What distinguishes this movement from mainstream modern Christianity?
5
votes
1answer
58 views

What are the differences between Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, and Nestorianism?

In another question, @Daи excellently explained the differences between Western and Eastern Christianity. But what are the differences between the Eastern Christianity itself, particularly between ...
5
votes
1answer
85 views

Is there any theological work on our experience of natural beauty as believers?

I was wondering if there are any verses in the Bible that speak about the Christian's experience of natural beauty? Or even any theological work would be nice to read. I came across this quote in a ...
4
votes
2answers
335 views

What is the Evangelical Christian argument against Rob Bell?

I was surprised to read the comments on this meta question1 about Rob Bell. I don't know much about him (except I watched some of the nooma films). What is the Evangelical Christian problem with him? ...
4
votes
3answers
838 views

Is there a standard Christian ontology?

I have asked earlier how Christians understand God in relation to the scientific concept of energy. Ultimately that line of questioning was stopped by the observation that my ontology was very ...
4
votes
4answers
237 views

If there were no punishment for sin would salvation be necessary?

Every time I hear someone say that 'If God were a loving God he would not send people to Hell', It makes me wonder Why does God, who is such a loving God send unbelievers to Hell. Since Jesus said ...
4
votes
8answers
648 views

How do Christians incorporate present moment everyday faith in light of God's multi-generational nature?

From reading the Bible, I have always had questions about how God works slowly over many generations of people and more specifically about those who live in what I call "God's Silent Periods". For ...
4
votes
4answers
267 views

Which churches today are the most missionary-minded (highly involved in missionary work)?

Was Jesus Christ's church (the primitive church) a missionary church? Matthew 28, verses 19-20 leads me to believe it was. It says, Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the ...
4
votes
2answers
76 views

Are questions that begin “Is it ok to ___” of primary theological importance?

Questions that begin "Is it ok to _" are often asked and I believe it is helpful to ask "how now shall we live?". However, from a theological standpoint are these questions of primary importance when ...
4
votes
1answer
184 views

Does intelligence or rationality belong to other animals by participation?

In the Summa Theologica, Question 108(5), St Thomas Aquinas writes: Therefore, if anything is to be called by a name designating its property, it ought not to be named from what it participates ...