Christian Apologetics Session 2

  • 213 views
Uploaded on

Teaching notes for course taught at LTCi Siliguri …

Teaching notes for course taught at LTCi Siliguri

More in: Spiritual
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Be the first to comment
No Downloads

Views

Total Views
213
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
3

Actions

Shares
Downloads
16
Comments
0
Likes
1

Embeds 0

No embeds

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
    No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. SESSION 2 FAITH AND REASON
  • 2. I READ THIS ON THEAOTMEAL.COM It is aggressive in nature and although not all aimed specifically at Christians it does attack many basic Christian beliefs. As we examine it consider how you would respond in a gracious, loving way without being condescending or antiintellectual
  • 3. What aspects of the Christian faith do you find people think of as difficult to accept why?
  • 4. SESSION 2 FAITH AND REASON
  • 5. This section is of vital importance in apologetics: If faith and reason cannot be brought together then apologetics is impossible. apologetics is the attempt to After all we defend faith with reasons weapons.
  • 6. DEFINING FAITH We differentiate between the act and the object of faith. The object of faith - all the things that are believed - all that God has revealed in the Bible (from a Christian point of view) - all of this is expressed in propositions.
  • 7. DEFINING FAITH We differentiate between propositionthe object sh the act and |ˌpräpəˈzi of ən| faith. A statement or assertion The object of faith - all the things that are believed - all that expresses a judgment that God hasthe or opinion : revealed in the Bible (from a that all men proposition Christian point of view) - all equal. is are created of this expressed in propositions.
  • 8. DEFINING FAITH We differentiate between the act and the object of faith. The object of faith - all the things that are believed - all that God has revealed in the Bible (from a Christian point of view) - all of this is expressed in propositions.
  • 9. We have many propositions but only one object of faith, ultimately this is not the Word of God, but God himself. The propositions point beyond themselves to God “A finger is good for pointing at the moon, but woe to him who mistakes the finger for the moon” [Zen saying] The propositions are a way of knowing and telling what we believe about God.
  • 10. The act of faith is more than just believing. There are many things we believe in life - but we would not necessarily die for them. Kreeft suggests that Religious faith is something we are prepared to die for and to live every moment for. Faith is more, and stronger, than belief.
  • 11. 4 aspects of religious faith. 1. Emotional faith - trust, assurance, confidence in a person - it includes the biblical ideas of hope and peace. 2. Intellectual faith - is belief, formulated in propositions and creeds.
  • 12. 4 aspects of religious faith. 1. Emotional faith - trust, assurance, confidence in a person - it includes the biblical ideas of hope and peace. 2. Intellectual faith - is belief, formulated in propositions and creeds.
  • 13. The Apostles' Creed - dates from very early times in the Church, 50yrs or so from the last writings of the NT. I believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended into hell.
  • 14. The third day He arose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy catholic church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.
  • 15. 3. Volitional faith - an act of the will choosing to obey God’s will - this is faithfulness which is shown in good works 4. Faith begins in our heart - a term used in scripture - not meaning sentiment, feeling or emotion but the centre of our soul, of our being. Proverbs 4:23
  • 16. 3. Volitional faith - an act of the will choosing to obey God’s will - this is faithfulness which is shown in good works 4. Faith begins in our heart - a term used in scripture - not meaning sentiment, feeling or emotion but the centre of our soul, of our being. Proverbs 4:23
  • 17. DEFINING REASON Again we have to distinguish the personal act of reason from the object of reason. The object of reason means all that reason can know; all the truths that can be, 1. Understood by human reason 2. Discovered by human reason 3. Proved by human reason without any premises assumed by faith in divine revelation
  • 18. DEFINING REASON Again we have to distinguish the reason |ˈriːz(ə)n| personal act of reason from the object - a reason. cause, explanation, or justification for of an action or event The object of reason means all that - in Logic a premise of an argument in reason can know; all the truths that support of a belief can be, - the power of the mind to think, 1. Understood form judgements logically understand, and by human reason 2.to find an answer human reason - Discovered by to a problem by 3. Proved by human reason without considering possible options - persuade (someone) with rational any premises assumed by faith in argument divine revelation
  • 19. DEFINING REASON Again we have to distinguish the personal act of reason from the object of reason. The object of reason means all that reason can know; all the truths that can be, 1. Understood by human reason 2. Discovered by human reason 3. Proved by human reason without any premises assumed by faith in divine revelation
  • 20. Reason is relative to truth - a way of knowing truth understanding, discovering or proving it. Faith is also relative to truth - it is a way of discovering it. Every human being has exercised faith in some way - much of what we know comes by faith, what parents tell us, as well as friends, writers, society etc. Outside of, and inside of religion, faith and reason are roads to truth.
  • 21. Reason is relative to truth - a way of knowing truth understanding, discovering or proving it. Faith is also relative to truth - it is a way of discovering it. Every human being has exercised faith in some way - much of what we know comes by faith, what parents tell us, as well as friends, writers, society etc. Outside of, and inside of religion, faith and reason are roads to truth.
  • 22. THE RELATION BETWEEN OBJECTS OF FAITH AND REASON What is the logical relation between the object of faith and the object of reason? How are these two truths those known by unaided human reason, and those knowable by faith in divine revelation - related?
  • 23. THE RELATION BETWEEN OBJECTS OF FAITH AND REASON There are 3 kinds of truths: 1. Truths of faith and not of reason 2. Truths of both faith and reason 3. Truths of reason and not of faith
  • 24. THE RELATION BETWEEN OBJECTS OF FAITH AND REASON There are 3 kinds of truths: 1. Truths of faith and not of reason 2. Truths of both faith and reason 3. Truths of reason and not of faith
  • 25. Truths of faith alone are revealed by God but not understandable, discoverable or provable by reason - e.g. The Trinity, the fact that Christ’s death atoned for our sins. Truths of faith and reason are also revealed by God but also understandable, discoverable or provable by reason - e.g. The existence of one God, an objective moral law, life after death.
  • 26. Faith 1 2 Reason 3 Truths of reason alone are not revealed by God but known by human reason - e.g. The natural sciences. So a Christian apologist has to prove all the propositions in category 2 and answer all objections to the propositions in category 1
  • 27. Faith 1 2 Reason 3 We cannot prove all the propositions in category 1 - e.g. That the Trinity exists, but we can answer the objections. So if a Muslim says the Trinity is a form of polytheism - we can say it is their misunderstanding, we do not mean ‘3 Gods’ but ‘God in 3 persons.’
  • 28. Faith 1 Reason 2 3 Logically someone might say a thing cannot be one and three - we can reply that we have two natures, mind & matter, body & soul etc. We should note not all propositions of faith can be proved - thus apologetics is always limited.
  • 29. WHY FAITH AND REASON CAN NEVER CONTRADICT EACH OTHER Kreeft cites Aquinas’s arguments in Summa Contra Gentiles in support of this. Thomas Aquinas, (28 January 1225 – 7 March 1274), an Italian Dominican friar and priest and an immensely influential philosopher and theologian. He was the foremost classical proponent of natural theology
  • 30. WHY FAITH AND REASON CAN NEVER CONTRADICT EACH OTHER His influence on Western thought is considerable, and much of modern philosophy was conceived in development or refutation of his ideas, particularly in the areas of ethics, natural law, metaphysics, and political theory. Best known for Summa Theologica and the Summa contra Gentiles.
  • 31. Now, although the truth of the Christian faith which we have discussed surpasses the capacity of the reason, nevertheless that truth that the human reason is naturally endowed to know cannot be opposed to the truth of the Christian faith. For that with which the human reason is naturally endowed is clearly most true; so much so, that it is impossible for us to think of such truths as false. Nor is it permissible to believe as false that which we hold by faith, since this is confirmed in a way that is so clearly divine. Since, therefore, only the false is opposed to the true, as is clearly evident from an examination of their definitions, it is impossible that the truth of faith should be opposed to those principles that the human reason knows naturally.
  • 32. So Aquinas states that either Christianity is false, or reason is false, or - if both are true - there can never be any real contradiction at all between them, since truth cannot contradict truth. Aquinas continues,
  • 33. Furthermore, that which is introduced into the soul of the student by the teacher is contained in the knowledge of the teacher—unless his teaching is fictitious, which it is improper to say of God. Now, the knowledge of the principles that are known to us naturally has been implanted in us by God; for God is the Author of our nature. These principles, therefore, are also contained by the divine Wisdom. Hence, whatever is opposed to them is opposed to the divine Wisdom, and, therefore, cannot come from God.That which we hold by faith as divinely revealed, therefore, cannot be contrary to our natural knowledge.
  • 34. At this point Aquinas uses a line of argument that many non-believers would find hard to agree with: From this we evidently gather the following conclusion: whatever arguments are brought forward against the doctrines of faith are conclusions incorrectly derived from the first and self-evident principles imbedded in nature. Such conclusions do not have the force of demonstration; they are arguments that are either probable or sophistical. And so, there exists the possibility to answer them.
  • 35. Kreeft argues that in effect what Aquinas has said is, “Every possible argument against Christian doctrine has a rational mistake in it somewhere and therefore can be answered by reason alone” If this is not so then one of the arguments from nonbelievers would be true and therefore Christianity untrue.
  • 36. what is not being claimed here is that all Christian doctrines can be proved by reason - simply that every argument against them can be disproved though within this we must always remember that the reasoners are flawed and so their arguments etc. can also be