Continuing discussion.

EPS Blog

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

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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Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Contemplation and Kingdom: What relation is there between Jesus's preaching of the Kingdom and the contemplation of God?

St. Augustine's Press' 2020 book, Contemplation and Kingdom by Kevin Hart, seeks to extend the work of Richard of St. Victor in important ways. Kevin Hart is the Edwin B. Kyle Professor of Christian Studies in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia. 

From the publisher's description of Contemplation and Kingdom
Contemplation and Kingdom seeks to retrieve aspects of Richard of St. Victor's treatment of contemplation, principally in De arca mystica, and does so by weighing Thomas Aquinas's reservations about this treatment in the Summa theologiæ. Is Aquinas right to object, as Augustine does in De Doctrina Christiana, that our contemplation should go directly to God and not be stalled in the consideration of the natural world? What relation is there between Jesus's preaching of the Kingdom and the contemplation of God? Is the contemplative life consistent with Jesus's injunction to love both God and neighbor? These are the principal questions considered in the book.

Readers may also find interesting Kevin Hart's 2014 book, Kingdoms of God. 

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Wednesday, September 30, 2020

William Lane Craig and Gregory Boyd on the Atonement: Importance of Multifaceted Frameworks

In 2020, Baylor University Press released Atonement and the Death of Christ: An Exegetical, Historical, and Philosophical Exploration by William Lane Craig. 

From the publisher's description of Atonement and the Death of Christ:
Through his death on the cross, Christ atoned for sin and so reconciled people to God. New Testament authors drew upon a range of metaphors and motifs to describe this salvific act, and down through history Christian thinkers have tried to articulate various theories to explain the atonement. While Christ’s sacrifice serves as a central tenet of the Christian faith, the mechanism of atonement―exactly how Christ effects our salvation―remains controversial and ambiguous to many Christians.
In Atonement and the Death of Christ, William Lane Craig conducts an interdisciplinary investigation of this crucial Christian doctrine, drawing upon Old and New Testament studies, historical theology, and analytic philosophy. The study unfolds in three discrete parts: Craig first explores the biblical basis of atonement and unfolds the wide variety of motifs used to characterize this doctrine. Craig then highlights some of the principal alternative theories of the atonement offered by great Christian thinkers of the premodern era. Lastly, Craig’s exploration delves into a constructive and innovative engagement with philosophy of law, which allows an understanding of atonement that moves beyond mystery and into the coherent mechanism of penal substitution.
Along the way, Craig enters into conversation with contemporary systematic theories of atonement as he seeks to establish a position that is scripturally faithful and philosophically sound. The result is a multifaceted perspective that upholds the suffering of Christ as a substitutionary, representational, and redemptive act that satisfies divine justice. In addition, this carefully reasoned approach addresses the rich tapestry of Old Testament imagery upon which the first Christians drew to explain how the sinless Christ saved his people from the guilt of their sins.

Prior to Atonement and the Death of Christ, Craig published The Atonement (2018, part of the "Cambridge Elements" series).

In a recent exchange (for Unbelievable radio) with theologian and pastor Gregory Boyd, Craig defends his account of penal substitutionary atonement, and discusses Boyd's objections in light of Boyd's defense of a more Christus Victor view of the atonement. 


Readers may also be interested in Craig's 2019 article in Philosophia Christi, "Is Penal Substitutionary Atonement Unsatisfactory?"

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Sunday, September 6, 2020

An Introduction to Christian Worldview: Pursuing God's Perspective in a Pluralistic World

In 2017, IVP Academic published An Introduction to Christian Worldview: Pursuing God's Perspective in a Pluralistic World by Tawa J. Anderson, W. Michael Clark, David K. Naugle. Tawa J. Anderson is assistant professor of philosophy and director of the honor program at Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Oklahoma. W. Michael Clark is a law clerk at the Arizona Court of Appeals. He previously taught at Oklahoma Baptist University for three years before entering law school. David K. Naugle is chair and professor of philosophy at Dallas Baptist University, where he has worked for over two decades.

From the publisher's description of An Introduction to Christian Worldview: 
Everyone has a worldview. A worldview is the lens through which we interpret the cosmos and our lives in it. A worldview answers the big questions of life: What is our nature? What is our world? What is our problem? What is our End? As Anderson, Clark, and Naugle point out, our worldview cannot simply be reduced to a series of rational beliefs. We are creatures of story, and the kinds of stories we tell reveal important things about our worldview. Part of being a thoughtful Christian means being able to understand and express the Christian worldview as well as developing an awareness of the variety of worldviews. An Introduction to Christian Worldview takes you further into answering questions such as Why do worldviews matter? What characterizes a Christian worldview? How can we analyze and describe a worldview? What are the most common secular and religious worldviews? Well organized, clearly written, and featuring aids for learning, An Introduction to Christian Worldview is the essential text for either the classroom or for self-study.

Enjoy this EPS interview with Tawa about how he became interested in philosophy.



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Friday, July 3, 2020

An Introduction to Aquinas's Moral, Economic, and Political Thought

In 2020, Baker Academic will publish Justice and Charity: An Introduction to Aquinas's Moral, Economic, and Political Thought by Michael P. Krom. Michael P. Krom is professor of philosophy and chair of the department at St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, where he serves as director of Benedictine Leadership Studies and director of the Faith and Reason Summer Program.

From the publisher's description of Justice and Charity:
This book introduces Thomas Aquinas's moral, economic, and political thought, differentiating between philosophy (justice) and theology (charity) within each of the three branches of Aquinas's theory of human living. It shows how Aquinas's thought offers an integrated vision for Christian participation in the world, equipping readers to apply their faith to the complex moral, economic, and political problems of contemporary society. Written in an accessible style by an experienced educator, the book is well-suited for use in a variety of undergraduate courses and provides a foundation for understanding Catholic social teaching.

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Monday, June 22, 2020

Introduction to Theological Anthropology

Baker Academic recently published Introduction to Theological Anthropology by Joshua R. Farris. Farris (PhD, University of Bristol) is Chester and Margaret Paluch Lecturer for 2019-2020 at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake. He was assistant professor of theology at Houston Baptist University and served as a Henry Fellow for the Creation Project at the Carl F. H. Henry Center at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He is author of The Soul of Theological Anthropology and the coeditor of Christian Physicalism? and The Ashgate Research Companion to Theological Anthropology. 

From the publisher's description of Introduction to Theological Anthropology:
In this thorough introduction to theological anthropology, Joshua Farris offers an evangelical perspective on the topic. Farris walks the reader through some of the most important issues in traditional approaches to anthropology, such as sexuality, posthumanism, and the image of God. He addresses fundamental questions like, Who am I? and Why do I exist? He also considers the creaturely and divine nature of humans, the body-soul relationship, and the beatific vision.

Joshua Farris is co-editor (with Nathan Jacobs) of the prominent Philosophy of Theological Anthropology project, a web project of the Evangelical Philosophical Society.  

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