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We complete chapter 4 of Christopher Southgate’s The Groaning of Creation.
Here are our essays.
Is God Responsible for extinctions that happen throughout nature? Does he cause them? Is there something good that can come about through the extinction of a species? Or is it a total waste?
Yesterday, we discussed how extinction may not be a total loss, the role of humans in God’s creation, an eschatological ‘need’ for redemption, a response to Ivan Karamazov, and whether or not God played a direct role in the evolution of homo sapiens.
Our response are here.
Above is a reading from a scene between Ivan (a skeptic) and his religious brother Alyosha from Fydor Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov regarding the difficulty of believing in a loving God in the face of the abuse and suffering of innocent children.
Though Southgate’s book focuses primarily on the suffering of animals, he uses the illustration above in this chapter to convey his thesis that “[T]he crux of the problem is not the overall system and its overall goodness but the Christian’s struggle with the challenge to the goodness of God posed by specific cases of innocent suffering.”
hosted by the Center for Interdisciplinary Research (www.thecir.info)
Sept. 10 – Dec. 10, 2016
This advanced interdisciplinary course meets for eight 3-hour Saturday morning sessions over a 3-month period.
No background in theology or science is required, but a commitment to reading the notes, which are drawn from Ron Choong’s PhD dissertation, is expected.
This inaugural CIR Master-Class will feature Ron Choong’s doctoral work submitted as an interdisciplinary PhD dissertation in 2009 to Princeton Seminary.
This week, we will take a mini-break from Confessions and discuss the topic of the Virgin birth and Christology.
We will be going over an article from the November/December 2014 issue of Biblical Archeology Review titled “How Babies Were Made in Jesus’ Time” by Andrew Lincoln. A brief synopsis of the article can be found here; for the complete article you have to order from the website.
Last night we went over our essays on Book V: Chapters 1 – 7 which you will find here. In these chapters, Augustine spends most of his time remembering his encounter with the preeminent Manichean scholar Faustus of Mileve and how it was through that meeting with him that eventually lead him away from Manichaeism.
We had an interesting discussion on the education (or lack of) in higher degrees for people in church leadership. We also discussed whether or not animals or creation in general can worship God, how science and religion could be reconciled, and how science can expose errors in theology.
I also came across an interesting article in The Wall Street Journal on a new book about St. Augustine by Robin Lane Fox titled Augustine: Conversions to Confessions that you can check out here.
Book V follows the young Augustine (he was around 29 years old at this time) from Carthage (where he finds his students too rowdy for his liking) to Rome (where he finds them too corrupt) and on to Milan, where he will remain until his conversion.
He spends most of the first half of this book recounting his encounter with Faustus, a Manichee luminary.
Please write on one of the following topics:
This HBO documentary takes a look into the beliefs of creationists and biblical literalists to understand why they so vehemently oppose evolution and Darwinism. That’s one half of the documentary.
The other half looks into the life and beliefs of Charles Darwin, and how so often he is misunderstood.
I would’ve liked if they could have interviewed Christians who embraced evolution or had no problems believing in the comparability of evolution (by natural selection) and Christianity, but they may be in the minority or not as vocal as creationists and evolutionary atheists.
This is a huge topic within American culture, society, and religion that gets really heated at times.