Continuing discussion.

EPS Blog

This is the blog area for the Evangelical Philosophical Society and its journal, Philosophia Christi.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Participate in the APA's Inaugural Alvin Plantinga Prize

The American Philosophical Association (APA) is currently accepting submissions for "the inaugural Alvin Plantinga Prize." 

Submission deadline: March 30, 2021

From the blog of the APA:

The APA’s newest prize was established in honor of Alvin Plantinga, John A. O’Brien Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame and a past president of the APA Central Division. The Alvin Plantinga Prize is funded through the generosity of the Bossenbroek Family Foundation. The prize will recognize original essays that engage philosophical issues about or in substantial ways related to theism. One prize of $10,000 and up to two honorable mention prizes of $5,000 each will be awarded annually. Submissions must be in English, within the range of 6,000–10,000 words. Submissions will be assessed according to canons of excellence for which Alvin Plantinga is eminent: clarity, rigor, and originality. 

Any APA member may submit an essay. To submit an essay by March 30, fill out the submission form.

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Monday, January 25, 2021

Philosophical Theology Contributions in the Winter 2020 issue of Philosophia Christi

The Winter 2020 issue, writes Editor Ross Inman, will be "packed with contributions, mostly in the area of philosophical theology, such as God and the nature of time, the causal principle and the kalam cosmological argument, the problem of evil, the metaphysics of the Incarnation, providence, theistic mathematical Platonism, and more."

Enjoy some of the latest articles, philosophical notes, and book reviews from authors like R. T. Mullins, John Jefferson Davis, Robert Larmer, James N. Anderson, K. Lauriston Smith, Rad Miksa, and many others!  
 
For as low as $25/yr, sign-up/renew your subscription today (EPS Membership includes a print subscription to the journal). 
 
Want digital only access to the journal? EPS members get a discounted rate through the Philosophy Documentation Center (includes the entire archive - over 1,000 contributions -since 1999!).

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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Joshua Farris Remembers Ben Arbour

With the recent and very tragic death of EPS member, Ben Arbour, and his dear wife, Meg, EPS President, Mike Austin, has invited friends and colleagues of Ben to offer their reflections on Ben's life, his care for philosophy, and his ministry to others.

Ben's friend and colleague, Joshua Farris (Executive Director, Alpine Christian School; Director of Trinity School of Theology), offers this personal reflection:
“Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;” (2 Corinthians 1:10) 
 
Ben Arbour, and his wife Meg, passed away on Friday November 6, 2020. Their death seems to have been sudden, and it was certainly tragic. They were the victims of a drag race early in the morning that Friday. 
 
I am still dismayed by Ben’s (and Meg’s, but I will focus on Ben) death. The feeling of shock has stayed with me since I first heard the news early Friday morning shortly after waking up. 
 
Ben, as many have stated already, was an extrovert. He was outgoing and loved a good discussion or a bit of banter. He would call you up randomly and delineate an argument he had been turning over in his head that day. Often the argument had something to do with Higher-Ed, politics, theology, or, his favorite topic—metaphysical idealism. 
 
Ben was an important figure in Christian philosophy. Investing himself primarily in the Evangelical Philosophical Society, he broadened his influence internationally through his writings on Anselmian theism and Open Theism. Both conservative and traditional, Ben was rightly discouraged and critical of the left leaning trend in the world of “Christian Philosophy”—something he saw as ironically the beginning of the end for the community. Ben lived out his convictions and was unafraid to challenge the convictions of others—even when it meant speaking against the trends of our times. Ben, for all the reasons here mentioned, was an important fixture in the Christian philosophy community. He challenged ideas and, most importantly, he brought people together for philosophical discussion (at times those with quite disparate perspectives). He organized several philosophical conferences for EPS and others. For this reason alone, he is a significant figure in our community and his absence will be noticed by all. 
 
More importantly, Ben was a friend. Good friends are hard to find. Ben often challenged me in ways that I found frustrating, but after some time I knew it came from a heart that loved me and my virtue—whether it be intellectual or volitional. His life was instructive in this way in that he prodded his friends toward virtue. 
 
His death has been instructive. When I heard others jump to the hope before properly processing his untimely death, I was discouraged. His death was and is devastating. While I am weary of easy believ-ism, my resolve is to trust that He will deliver us from the grave. He has been faithful in the past, and he will be faithful again. I will see Ben again. 

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Monday, November 23, 2020

Greg Trickett Remembers Ben Arbour

With the recent and very tragic death of EPS member, Ben Arbour, and his dear wife, Meg, EPS President, Mike Austin, has invited friends and colleagues of Ben to offer their reflections on Ben's life, his care for philosophy, and his ministry to others. 

Ben's friend and colleague, Greg Trickett (Associate Professor of Philosophy at Weatherford College) offers this personal reflection: 
On the night of Thursday, November 5th, just after midnight, Ben and Meg Arbour were tragically killed while coming home from a date. They were hit by a street racer less than two blocks from their home. I heard the news of their deaths on Friday morning at around 10am. In that instant, time slowed and my world changed. Those of you who met Ben know that he didn’t know a stranger. You also know that he and Meg touched and positively impacted so many lives. If you didn’t know him, chances are you knew others who did. Within the Christian Philosophical community, there were far fewer than six degrees that separated Ben from any other person. Personally, for me he was one of a handful of my closest friends. 

Ben thrived on his friends, they were like oxygen for him, and he was in his element in large crowds where he knew lots of people. I went to several conferences with him and it was typical to find Ben at lunch or dinner trying his best to gather every single one of his friends to go somewhere for a meal. I think he enjoyed those gatherings more than the presentations, and he really enjoyed the presentations. 

But I enjoyed the smaller gatherings, especially when just the five of us, Ben and I along with Jay Howell, Brad Palmer, and David Williams, would hang out. The last thing we did was go golfing for Brad’s and my birthdays. Two weeks before that, we’d gathered at my house to play the board game, Pandemic which Ben thoroughly enjoyed. 

It hurts. And I know his family is hurting exponentially more. Please pray for Ben and Meg’s four children as they cope and begin to face a life without their parents. (If you are wanting to help, please consider contributing to a fund set up for their kids through Wedgewood Baptist Church at Arbourfund.org. Make sure to designate your donation to “Arbour fund.”) But there is comfort in all this. It is a comfort found in the faith and hope to which Ben and Meg held. Their faith was in Christ who came so that all may be saved and find hope; their hope was in the resurrection. I look forward to seeing Ben again. Much to Ben’s pleasure, it’ll be a bigger group next time, but I know I’ll see him again, because my faith and hope are the same. 

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Wednesday, November 18, 2020

John Gilhooly Remembers Ben Arbour

With the recent and very tragic death of EPS member, Ben Arbour, and his dear wife, Meg, EPS President, Mike Austin, has invited friends and colleagues of Ben to offer their reflections on Ben's life, his care for philosophy, and his ministry to others.

Ben's friend and colleague, John Gilhooly (Director of Honors Program, Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Theology, at Cedarville University), offers this reflection:
Ben was a wonderful, relentless, indefatigable advocate for clarity in our speech about God, purity in our devotion to Christ, and charity in our conduct by the Spirit. He was a loyal friend: equal measures bold and honest. He knew no strangers because he showed no partiality. He argued fiercely because he cared deeply. He took his work seriously but he could laugh at himself. His friends knew that even a causal joke directed his way would provoke a serious response - even as he chuckled at the absurdity. 

I realized when I met Ben that I did not love analytic philosophy. I wouldn't do it for free or as a hobby. But, Ben's professional accomplishments were something he happened to do when the more pressing business of his work or family or church was complete. He had a passion in his pursuits that was contagious, even if his grit and tenacity for argument were so surpassing that few could imitate the frenzied pace of his joyous life. Ben was a hurricane that could argue.

I will miss him until the Day, and the academic community is poorer for the vacuum of personality and insight that Ben leaves behind.

For the EPS web project on The Philosophy of Theological Anthropology, Ben and John wrote on "Transgenderism, Human Ontology, and the Metaphysics of Properties." 

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Monday, November 16, 2020

A Beginner’s Guide to Richard Dawkins and the God Debate

In 2020, Cascade Books published Outgrowing God? A Beginner's Guide to Richard Dawkins and the God Decade, written by Peter S. Williams. Peter S. Williams is an English philosopher, author, and Assistant Professor in Communication and Worldviews at NLA University College at Gimlekollen in Kristiansand, Norway.

From the publisher's description: 
Join a cast of characters, with different perspectives, thinking through some of the biggest questions in life, as they discuss atheist Richard Dawkins’ book Outgrowing GodA Beginner’s Guide. Written in the form of a dialogue between members of a student book club, Outgrowing God? A Beginner’s Guide to Richard Dawkins and the God Debate encourages critical thinking about Professor Dawkins’ arguments concerning God, Jesus and the Bible.

Learn more about the book by visiting PeterSWilliams.com, along with links to supplemental resources, including various videos and papers presented by Williams. 

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Thursday, November 5, 2020

2020 Panel Discussions at EPS-ETS on "The Genealogical Adam and Eve" and “Aquinas, Original Sin, and the Challenge of Evolution”

At the 2020 annual conference of the Evangelical Philosophical Society (EPS) - which is held in conjunction with the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) - enjoy live virtual discussions (November 16-20) centered around dozens of pre-recorded paper presentations (full schedule). 

Additionally, come participate in live panel discussions on Thursday, November 19th, which include EPS and ETS contributors:

1:30 PM – 4:40 PM (Eastern)

Author Meets Critic: Joshua Swamidass’ The Genealogical Adam and Eve.

Moderator: Ken Keathley (Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary)

Panelists:

  • Richard E. Averbeck (Trinity Evangelical Divinity School)
  • Andrew Loke (Hong Kong Baptist University)
  • William Lane Craig (Talbot School of Theology & Houston Baptist University)
  • Ken Keathley (Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary)
  • Joshua Swamidass (Washington University)
Enjoy further discussion on this topic at an EPS session at AAR/SBL on December 1st.

Read more »

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2020 Panel Discussions at EPS-ETS on "God in Himself: Scripture, Metaphysics, and the Task of Christian Theology”

At the 2020 annual conference of the Evangelical Philosophical Society (EPS) - which is held in conjunction with the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) - enjoy live virtual discussions (November 16-20) centered around dozens of pre-recorded paper presentations (full schedule). 

Additionally, come participate in live panel discussions on Thursday, November 19th, which include EPS and ETS contributors:

8:30 AM – 11:40 AM (Eastern)

“God in Himself: Scripture, Metaphysics, and the Task of Christian Theology”

Moderator: Alden McCray (Oak Hill College) Introduction

Respondents:
  • Scott R. Swain (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • Jonathan T. Pennington (Southern Baptist Theological Seminary)
  • Nathaniel Gray Sutanto (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • Dolf te Velde (Theological University Kampen / ETF Leuven)
  • Steven J. Duby (Grand Canyon University)
Important Conference and Registration Information
  • All updates for conference sessions can be found in the virtual schedule managed by the ETS.
  • All presenters and participants must register for the conference via the ETS website. If you need assistance or have questions about conference registration, please email meeting@etsjets.org.
  • You must be a current member to register for the EPS conference. Please sign-up/renew for EPS OR ETS annual membership. EPS membership includes a print subscription to Philosophia Christi (preview the Current Issue of the journal)
Reminder: Five EPS Panel Sessions are being hosted in light of the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature annual conference. EPS sessions are November 30-December 2! Session themes include: "Modernizing the Beatific Vision: Philosophical and Scientific Perspectives on the Visio Dei”; "Analyzing Doctrine: Book Panel"; "Author Meets Critics: Science and Religion in The Genealogical Adam and Eve, by S. Joshua Swamidass”; "Christian Philosophical Theology and the Church"; and "Author Meets Critics: God and Ultimate Origins: A Novel Cosmological Argument, by Andrew Ter Ern Loke" (registration info at the links).

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2020 Panel Discussions at EPS-ETS: "Islam & Evangelical Christianity" and "Christian Ethics"

At the 2020 annual conference of the Evangelical Philosophical Society (EPS) - which is held in conjunction with the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) - enjoy live virtual discussions (November 16-20) centered around dozens of pre-recorded paper presentations (full schedule). 

Additionally, come participate in live panel discussions on Monday, November 16th, which include EPS and ETS contributors:

1:30 PM – 4:40 PM (Eastern) 

Islam & Evangelical Christianity

“Understanding Our Neighbor: Muslims and Evangelicals in Conversation”

Moderator: C. Donald Smedley (Rivendell Institute at Yale)

Panelists:
  • Hamza Yusuf* (Zaytuna College)
  • Asma T. Uddin* (Aspen Institute)
  • Mohamed Magid* (All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center)
  • John Hartley (Yale University)
  • Darrell Bock (Dallas Theological Seminary)
  • C. Donald Smedley (Rivendell Institute at Yale)
* Invited Guest of ETS
 
 
3:30 PM – 4:25 PM (Eastern): Live Q&A Session 

Christian Ethics: “Christian Theological Ethics and Human Labor” (Pre-Recorded Papers)
  • Matthew Kaemingk (Fuller Theological Seminary): Work, Worship, and Ethics: The Connection Between Liturgy and Labor in Deuteronomy 26.
  • Amber Bowen (University of Aberdeen): Restoring the Dignity of Time
  • Heath W. Carter* (Princeton Theological Seminary): “Christianizing the Social Order”? Labor, Capital, and the Christian Origins of the New Deal.
  • Matthew Arbo (Oklahoma Baptist University): The Concept of Work in Oliver O’Donovan’s Ethics as Theology Trilogy.
* Invited Guest of ETS

Important Conference and Registration Information
  • All updates for conference sessions can be found in the virtual schedule managed by the ETS.
  • All presenters and participants must register for the conference via the ETS website. If you need assistance or have questions about conference registration, please email meeting@etsjets.org.
  • You must be a current member to register for the EPS conference. Please sign-up/renew for EPS OR ETS annual membership. EPS membership includes a print subscription to Philosophia Christi (preview the Current Issue of the journal)

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2020 EPS Panel Discussions on “William Lane Craig’s Nominalism and the Atonement” and "Can Christianity and Islam Share a Public Square?" and “Cross and Crescent: Confessions in Collision”

At the 2020 annual conference of the Evangelical Philosophical Society (EPS) - which is held in conjunction with the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) - enjoy live virtual discussions (November 16-20) centered around dozens of pre-recorded paper presentations (full schedule).

Additionally, come participate in these live EPS panel discussions on Tuesday, November 17th:

1:30 PM – 4:40 PM (Eastern) 

“William Lane Craig’s Nominalism and the Atonement”

Moderator: R. Scott Smith (Biola University)

Panelists:
  • R. Scott Smith (Biola University)
  • Richard B. Davis (Tyndale University)
  • William Lane Craig (Talbot School of Theology & Houston Baptist University)

1:30 PM – 4:40 PM (Eastern)

Public Theology: “Can Christianity and Islam Share a Public Square?”

Moderators: Greg Forster (Trinity International University) 

Introduction: Richard Mouw (Calvin University)

Panelists:
  • Matthew Kaemingk (Fuller Theological Seminary) 
  • Asma T. Uddin* (Aspen Institute)
* Invited Guest of ETS


6:30 PM – 9:40 PM (Eastern) 

“Cross and Crescent: Confessions in Collision”

Moderator: Kevin E. Voss (Concordia University Wisconsin)

Panelists:
  • Kevin E. Voss (Concordia University Wisconsin) 
  • Angus Menuge (Concordia University Wisconsin) 
  • Roland C. Ehlke (Concordia University Wisconsin)
  • Sam Shamoun (Answering Islam: A Christian – Muslim Dialog).

Important Conference and Registration Information
  • All updates for conference sessions can be found in the virtual schedule managed by the ETS.
  • All presenters and participants must register for the conference via the ETS website. If you need assistance or have questions about conference registration, please email meeting@etsjets.org.
  • You must be a current member to register for the EPS conference. Please sign-up/renew for EPS OR ETS annual membership. EPS membership includes a print subscription to Philosophia Christi (preview the Current Issue of the journal)

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Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Jesus the Great Philosopher: Rediscovering the Wisdom Needed for the Good Life

In 2020, Brazos Press will release Jesus the Great Philosopher: Rediscovering the Wisdom Needed for the Good Life by Jonathan T. Pennington. Jonathan T. Pennington (PhD, University of St. Andrews), a popular speaker, teacher, and preacher, is associate professor of New Testament interpretation and director of research doctoral studies at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is also on staff as a preaching pastor at Sojourn East Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

From the publisher's description of Jesus the Great Philosopher:

Many of us tend to live as though Jesus represents the "spiritual part" of our lives. We don't clearly see how he relates to the rest of our experiences, desires, and habits. How can Jesus, the Bible, and Christianity become more than a compartmentalized part of our lives? 
Highly regarded New Testament scholar and popular teacher Jonathan Pennington argues that we need to recover the lost biblical image of Jesus as the one true philosopher who teaches us how to experience the fullness of our humanity in the kingdom of God. Jesus teaches us what is good, right, and beautiful and offers answers to life's big questions: what it means to be human, how to be happy, how to order our emotions, and how we should conduct our relationships. 
This book brings Jesus and Christianity into dialogue with the ancient philosophers who asked the same big questions about finding meaningful happiness. It helps us rediscover biblical Christianity as a whole-life philosophy, one that addresses our greatest human questions and helps us live meaningful and flourishing lives.

 

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Saturday, October 10, 2020

Biblical Philosophy: A Hebraic Approach to the Old and New Testaments

In 2021, Cambridge University Press will release Biblical Philosophy: A Hebraic Approach to the Old and New Testaments by Dru Johnson. Dru Johnson directs the Center for Hebraic Thought and is an associate professor of biblical studies at The King's College.

From the publisher's description of Biblical Philosophy

In Biblical Philosophy, Dru Johnson examines how the texts of Christian Scripture argue philosophically with ancient and modern readers alike. He demonstrates how biblical literature bears the distinct markers of a philosophical style in its use of literary and philosophical strategies to reason about the nature of reality and our place within it. Johnson questions traditional definitions of philosophy and compares the Hebraic style of philosophy with the intellectual projects of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Hellenism. Identifying the genetic features of the Hebraic philosophical style, Johnson traces its development from its hybridization in Hellenistic Judaism to its retrieval by the New Testament authors. He also shows how the Gospels and letters of Paul exhibit the same genetic markers, modes of argument, particular argument forms, and philosophical convictions that define the Hebraic style, while they engaged with Hellenistic rhetoric. His volume offers a model for thinking about philosophical styles in comparative philosophical discussions.

Here is an introduction to the Center for Hebraic Thought:


 

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