According to so-called “classical theism,” God is wholly immutable, or unchanging. Not only can he never change in character, or nature; he cannot change in any respect whatsoever. He does not have changing thoughts; he does not have changing emotions (he is “impassible”). Indeed, he does not even experience sequence in his thoughts, emotions, or life generally. He is wholly “timeless,” with no before or after, with no sequence at all. His existence is somehow a timeless nunc (“now”). And in that timeless-now existence God experiences no change in thoughts, emotions, plans, or actions. Indeed, according to classical theism, God just is his eternal thought and eternal bliss. Even his plans and actions are somehow one and somehow identical to his very being. There is no real distinction between God and his thoughts, emotions, plans, and activities. We make mental distinctions (logical or conceptual distinctions) between them, but in reality they are one and the same. (For a famous presentation of the classical conception of God see the Prima Pars of Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologica.) Continue reading
In a previous post, I told of Denver Broncos Quarterback Peyton Manning’s Christian faith. So, in light of the approaching Super Bowl contest between Manning’s Denver Broncos and Russell Wilson’s Seattle Seahawks, I thought it only fair to write a post on Wilson’s Christian faith—even if this might make it harder to determine which team to root for on Sunday! Continue reading
Comedian Bill Maher is well-known for his attacks on the Bible. For example, in his film Be More Cynical (2000) he said,
The Bible looks like it started out as a game of Mad Libs.
Now in reply to statements like this, I could offer all my reasons for why I believe Bill Maher is wrong about the Bible. But rather than doing that, I thought I would share some quotes from leading lights in times past who thought highly of the Bible. I thought I’d match a quote with quotes, you might say.
All Bible readers are familiar with the story of the flood recorded in the Book of Genesis (or Bereshit as it is called in the Jewish tradition). The story is a sober one. After all, God destroyed the entire world, except for one family and representative pairs of animals. But from the story, particularly the introduction of the story in Genesis 6.5-7, we can learn a lot about God that might surprise us when we compare how this ancient Hebrew narrative depicts God with the “classical” conception of God rooted in Greek philosophy. Continue reading
I have often wondered how many people who attend Calvinist churches really realize that the official position of their church and of their elders and pastors is that God has ordained and so determines all things that occur in the universe. They know their pastors and elders make much of God being “sovereign,” but do they really realize this is what their church means by God being “sovereign”? Continue reading
This past Sunday Peyton Manning led the Denver Broncos to decisive victory over Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. The Broncos are now AFC Champions and will match up against the NFC Champion Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII. Peyton’s performance in this years Playoffs has been a continuation of his performance in the regular season, which amounts to the greatest statistical regular season at the quarterback position in the 94-year history of the National Football League (NFL). This regular season saw Manning set records in yards passed in a season (5,477) and touchdowns thrown in a season (55), and he led his team to accumulate more points (606) in a regular season than had ever been done before. Manning also tied the record for touchdowns thrown in a game (7) in the Broncos Week 1 win over the defending Super Bowl Champions, the Baltimore Ravens. Continue reading
Here are some selections from On the Nature of the Gods penned in 45 BC by the Roman statesman and philosopher Marcus Tullius Cicero. In the excerpts Cicerco presents the Teleological Argument, or the Argument from Design, for the existence of God. The selections come from Book II, chapters XXXVII, XLIV, and XLVII.
Who would not deny the name of human being to a man who, on seeing the regular motions of the heaven and the fixed order of the stars and the accurate interconnexion and interrelation of all things, can deny that these things possess any rational design, and can maintain that phenomena, the wisdom of whose ordering transcends the capacity of our wisdom to understand it, take place by chance? Continue reading