Questions tagged [philosophy]

Philosophical approaches in theology and relationship between philosophy and faith.

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Where does the concept of a "God-shaped hole" originate?

There's a concept that I heard used many times throughout my life in regards to idolatry. The idea is that inside each of us is a "God-shaped hole"--a place inside of our hearts that only God can ...
Richard's user avatar
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29 votes
10 answers
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What reasons does Christianity give for "Why There Must Be A God?" [closed]

I realize this question could also be addressed on Philosophy.SE, but I am very interested to get specifically the Christian perspective on this issue. I was raised Catholic, but have left the Church ...
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23 votes
13 answers
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Believing that Christianity is "probably" true vs. being fully convinced that Christianity is definitely true?

Most apologetic arguments for theism/Christianity are probabilistic (i.e. they are abductive in nature, rely on premises that are not necessarily true, etc.), meaning that a rational person who is ...
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13 votes
1 answer
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What is the background of the words "notitia," "fiducia," and "assensus" and how do they relate to the biblical notion of "faith"?

The book Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview (page 18) describes notitia, fiducia, and assensus as the three essential elements that make up the biblical notion of "faith." notitia ...
Resting in Shade's user avatar
13 votes
6 answers
7k views

Does the Bible make a distinction between Christian and secular love? [closed]

John makes this startling claim in his first epistle. 1 John 4:7-8 (NIV) 7  Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows ...
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13 votes
3 answers
901 views

What is the "fideism" rejected by the Catholic Church?

In philosophy, fideism seems to be used as a label to refer to epistemological approaches that tend to prioritize faith over reason. And this makes sense; after all, "fideism" is just Latin for "...
Nathaniel is protesting's user avatar
12 votes
1 answer
941 views

Was William of Ockham the first sedevacantist?

Ockham (cf. this article on him by the Catholic logician Paul V. Spade) invented his dead-end nominalist philosophy in order to justify his being against the papacy (cf. Thomist John Deely's Four Ages ...
Geremia's user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is there a name for the belief that some individuals would always freely reject salvation no matter the world in which they are created?

When God created the world, He had to accept the fact that some of His creatures would sin and ultimately fail to repent and be saved (I'm assuming that universalism is false, to be clear). For ...
Mark's user avatar
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11 votes
1 answer
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What is Alvin Plantinga's view on divine sovereignty and free will?

The main Wikipedia page on Molinism lists Plantinga as one of its (Molinism's) best known advocates. However, Plantinga, in a speech given at Azusa Pacific University, describes himself as "a ...
userSomeNumbersHere's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why would Fundamentalists think Set Theory is 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) fundamentalist/...
aceinthehole's user avatar
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How do Christians rebut Matt Dillahunty's objection that the resurrection of Jesus is untestable, unfalsifiable and thus unreasonable to believe?

On April 8, 2021, during a debate between Matt Dillahunty and Catholic Apologist Trent Horn titled Is belief in the Resurrection reasonable? Trent Horn Vs Matt Dillahunty Debate, hosted by Pints With ...
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10 votes
4 answers
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What is a "non-theistic" Christian?

The comments to this response suggest that there is such a thing as a Christian who does not believe in God. To me, that is rather contradictory, sort of like social networking without all of the ...
cwallenpoole's user avatar
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2 answers
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Does everything happen for a reason, and what is the biblical support for the different views? [duplicate]

Sometimes, people say that everything happens for a reason (as in "God has a purpose with everything that happens, good or bad"). It seems to me that the Bible is not clear on the subject. On one hand,...
Niclas Nilsson's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
199 views

What is the status of "The Will to Believe" among contemporary philosophers?

My own conversion experience agrees with William James' "Will to Believe" philosophy. To put it briefly, here's a snippet from Wikipedia: ""The Will to Believe" is a lecture by William James, ...
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5 answers
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What is the relation between the Logos of Greek Philosophy and the Logos in Christianity?

The first known mention of the "logos" was by Greek philosopher Heraclitus who lived around 535 - 475 BC. The idea was subsequently developed further by other philosophers such as Aristotle. The ...
TheIronKnuckle's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
452 views

What influence did Greco-Roman philosophy have on the doctrine of "creatio ex nihilo"?

Background Frequently, Creationists and Theistic Evolutionists will appeal to and debate/discuss the idea of "Creatio Ex Nihilo" (Latin for "creation from nothing") with some critiquing the concept ...
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What is God's shape or form? [closed]

How do we describe God? Does He have a shape or form? Is He human-like, a light, or something else? Does He have a shape? What does Christianity say about it?
TheTechGuy's user avatar
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5 answers
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Any philosphers arguing that the Christian worldview is the most rational?

I have seen life at either extreme, first as a Hindu, with a sort of blind faith in general religiosity, and later as an atheist, with a blind faith in knowledge obtained through the senses alone. I ...
Joebevo's user avatar
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Why did Christianity not follow Philo of Alexandria's definition of logos?

Philo of Alexandria (20 BC – 50 AD), a Hellenized Jew, used the term Logos to mean an intermediary divine being, or demiurge. Philo followed the Platonic distinction between imperfect matter and ...
Darryl's user avatar
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What is the name of this theological problem?

I have formulated a theological problem, and I would like to research different answers people have for it. This process would be a lot easier if I had a solid starting point. I am wondering if there ...
user20059's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
917 views

St. Thomas Aquinas' contingency proof and LDS cosmology

The argument from contingency summarized by St. Thomas illustrates that in order for existence to be a reality there must be an "Uncaused Cause" that possesses existence in and of Himself. ...
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8 votes
4 answers
789 views

Did any other philosophical systems have as much influence on the early Church as Platonism and Stoicism?

Many historians agree that the philosophical systems of Platonism and Stoicism had an important role in the efforts of the early Church to communicate the message of the Gospel to unbelievers, and ...
Philip Schaff's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
643 views

Is the philosophy of René Girard compatible with mainline Christianity?

Rene Girard is a French historian and philosopher. The premise of his works is summarized by Wikipedia: mimetic desire: all of our desires are borrowed from other people; mimetic rivalry: ...
aceinthehole's user avatar
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7 votes
3 answers
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From a Christian perspective, what are "nonresistant nonbelievers" most likely doing wrong that prevents them from finding and believing in God?

From Nonresistant Nonbelief, by J. L. Schellenberg: One might fail to believe in God even while God is open to a belief-entailing personal relationship if one prevents oneself from believing in God ...
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6 votes
10 answers
1k views

How it is possible to be one God in three persons (Jesus, Holy Ghost, and God the Father)?

1)”Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Deuteronomy 6:4 2)And the Word( Jesus) became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son[a] from the ...
Alex A's user avatar
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2 answers
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What is (or where can I find) a summary of David J Bartholomew's views on God and Chance?

I note that David J. Bartholomew has written extensively on a theological view of chance. What is a brief summary of the views he expresses on this topic in the following works or elsewhere: God of ...
bruised reed's user avatar
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6 votes
4 answers
302 views

What influence did Greek philosophy have on the formation of orthodox Christian doctrine?

What influence did Greek philosophy have on the formation of orthodox Christian doctrine? Particularly, what Christian doctrines or paradigms of understanding God and reality can be traced to have ...
למה זה תשאל לשמי's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
479 views

What did C. S. Lewis base his idea of sehnsucht/joy on?

C. S. Lewis' idea of sehnsucht is that we sense that there is some ineffable object to our desires and that this proves that there is something beyond this world and life (for it makes the enjoyment ...
Sehnsucht's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
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According to Reformed Theology, how is Compatibilism different than Hard Determinism?

This question is related to What is the difference between hard determinism and compatibilism, under the assumption of physicalism?, but I'm looking for the Reformed/Calvinism understanding of this ...
Cannabijoy's user avatar
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5 votes
4 answers
401 views

Is naturalistic cosmology pointing us back to viewing stars as gods (similar to how pagans did), crediting stars with giving meaning to the universe?

I ask this after seeing a documentary on BBC TV, the evening of 27 October 2021, where Professor Brian Cox started a new series on the universe. This first episode dealt with the way the universe ...
Anne's user avatar
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5 votes
2 answers
361 views

What is a formal ontological definition of the nature of God according to the doctrine of the Trinity?

What is a formal ontological definition of the nature of God according to the doctrine of the Trinity? Are the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit ontologically independent entities, each one being ...
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5 votes
3 answers
247 views

Intellectual work of monks as a way to getting closer to God by understanding better His creation?

Lately I have been very interested in the different ways that Christianity (and religion in general) has to address all the different ways that we as mere mortal humans have to get closer to God. In ...
Hvjurthuk's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
328 views

What's the main contribution of William of Ockham?

I heard a Catholic Bishop talking about William of Ockham (Robert Barron) but I'm still not quite sure of some things: What is the contribution of William of Ockham to the Church? What would sum up ...
Dan's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
122 views

Texts in Eastern services expressing ideas about the role of woman in child development

I have quite a specific question about the view of ancient Christians on the development of a child. I always assumed, that since the Ephesus Fathers considered being born of human woman as a ...
zefciu's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
159 views

How is the LDS view of eternity unique?

I was once told by a member of the LDS that the mormon concept of eternity is different, that they believe in "eternal progression" or something to that effect. Essentially from what I ...
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4 votes
5 answers
716 views

How do Latter-day Saints respond to William Lane Craig's philosophical objections to the Mormon view of creation?

The Mormon View of Creation is the title of an episode of the Reasonable Faith Podcast, recorded on February 16, 2010, in which William Lane Craig, a renowned Christian apologist, philosopher and ...
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4 votes
3 answers
3k 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 ...
AdamRedwine's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
325 views

Have any Christian thinkers expressed the idea that the Trinity can be proven independently from Scripture?

It is widely understood among trinitarians that the doctrine of the trinity is best seen through special revelation, particularly the scriptural accounts of the incarnation of Christ. But have there ...
Manwe Elder's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
391 views

According to Roman Catholicism, what is the soul and its purpose?

In the Catholic Tradition does there exist a teaching on the purpose or role of the human soul in the makeup of a human being? I could also settle for a theologian's thoughts and writings on the ...
shiningcartoonist's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
867 views

In Aquinas's first proof of God's existence, what is the difference between accidentally and essentially ordered causal series?

I'm reading «Teología Natural» by Ángel Luis González. In the book, it is stated that St. Thomas Aquinas' viae would allow an indefinite series of causes. He distiguishes between two causes. The ...
An old man in the sea.'s user avatar
4 votes
6 answers
5k views

Was Jesus a Cynic (Greek philosophy)?

Cynicism is a school of Greek philosophy. It taught that the purpose of life was to live in virtue, in agreement with nature. As reasoning creatures, people could gain happiness by rigorous ...
felino's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
643 views

How has the ontological argument been used to explain the Trinity?

The basis of an ontological argument is the existence of an idea of a great God, of whom none greater can be imagined. However, we've heard many times that the human mind cannot comprehend the ...
Sean Jeremiah's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
145 views

Persecution in Christianity

I had a strange exchange with a user on this forum. They took a view I doubt Thomas Aquinas would have agreed with. They felt that anything that interfered with saying the Mass was persecution. Let ...
Dave Harris's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
929 views

Are there philosophical explanations for why God would allow animals to suffer due to non-human causes?

I just finished watching CosmicSkeptic's video titled Christianity's Biggest Problem, in which Alex O'Connor, the owner of the channel, presents the problem of animal suffering as the biggest ...
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4 votes
1 answer
740 views

Lutheranism, Has God ordained all things?

According to the Westminster Confession of Faith God has, in some way, ordained everything that comes to pass. I. God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely ...
San Jacinto's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
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What are the correct pairings between the soul's faculties and the 3 transcendentals?

The three transcendentals and imago dei Medieval scholastic theology inherited the notions of transcendentals from Greek metaphysics. CCC 41, interpreting Wis 13:5, teaches that our soul has the ...
GratefulDisciple's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
141 views

Can someone clarify the eastern orthodox teaching "Temps Immobile" of Fr. Alexander Schmemann?

I've been reading about Eastern Orthodox theology and one thing that caught my attention is the unusual view of time that some Eastern Orthodox theologians have, in particular Fr. Alexander Schmemann. ...
Chris's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
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Who are the prominent Christian thinkers that define "permissive" will?

I would like to get a better understanding of the term "permissive will". I have read a couple threads on this forum related to this topic, but neither has given me a satisfactory understanding. I ...
ktm5124's user avatar
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3 votes
9 answers
3k views

How do proponents of the “free-will defense” against the problem of evil explain that God can be free and immune to moral evil at the same time?

The free-will defense is an argument commonly attributed to Alvin Plantinga, who developed it as a response to the logical problem of evil. However, in developing this argument Plantinga unwittingly ...
Mark's user avatar
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3 votes
3 answers
487 views

Are all things possible with God?

Every Christian knows the saying that "With God all things are possible." But is this actually a fact? I listened recently to a speaker, who said, that God cannot come in contact with anything ...
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