Natural Theology 2: Calvin’s Conception of the Knowledge of God

Jacob Aitken writes, “Any discussion of the imago-dei (“Image of God” in man) is better served, not by speculating on essences and accidents, but on man’s role as priest-king-prophet in creation and New Creation”. Down below, you’ll see much the same conclusion from Muller regarding Calvin’s understanding of the imago dei: it must be informed …

A Brief History of the Christian Doctrine of God Part 4: “Knowing God”

Richard Muller moves along to the 13th century, in which commenting upon Peter Lombard’s Sentences became normative for the study of theology. Even a younger Martin Luther commented upon the Sentences (though not upon the Doctrine of God) and Calvin viewed the work as foundational for Medieval theology. With that said, I’m skipping a lot …

A Brief History of the Christian Doctrine of God, Part 1: Anselm

Anselm of Canterbury and the Beginnings of “Classical Theism” The Westminster Confession of Faith explicitly endorses reason as well as Scripture as being a source of doctrine, when it says, “The whole counsel of God, concerning all things necessary for his own glory, man’s salvation, faith, and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, …

Fudging Aristotle: A Digression (Part 7): Logic and Categories

[Subtitle: How Aquinas Fudged Aristotle to Settle Transubstantiation]: In recent posts, I’ve cited Willem van Asselt with an overview of the Works of Aristotle, and also Arthur Lovejoy noting that “the God of Aristotle had almost nothing in common with the God of the Sermon on the Mount”. But that doesn’t mean that Aristotle didn’t …

Fudging Aristotle: A Digression (Part 3): Borrowing methods, not concepts

In two recent blog posts describing the methodology of the Reformed Orthodox writers, I noted first that it was “nominally Aristotelian”, stressing, however, that it was so because that methodology was ancient and familiar, and second, that while they employed that methodology, they did so while avoiding Aristotelian concepts, employing Scriptural “content” instead. William J. …