Emperical Theism - Adam Reed Dr. Kaplan Christianity and...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Adam Reed Dr. Kaplan Christianity and Its Critics Paper #3 During the Enlightenment period of the 1800’s Christianity fell under heavy attack from skeptics such as David Hume. Hume’s view on Christianity was shaped largely by the early Church’s inability to explain natural theology. The existence of suffering in the world was one reason that Hume rejected the Christian idea of God. Over two hundred years later, in the book “The Doors of the Sea,” David Bentley Hart offers some answers to the problems put forth by Hume. Hart shows that God can co-exist with natural evil and that the existence of suffering does not disprove god’s existence, while maintaining that Christianity retains moral legitimacy. God’s existence was called into question with David Hume’s “Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion.” Hume uses the existence of natural evil in the world to try and disprove God’s existence. He does this specifically by attacking Empirical Theism. Empirical Theism claims that by looking at the natural world we can make conclusions about God and his attributes. From a Christian point of view, this means that God is all- good and completely omnipotent. Some Orthodox Christians may also take this further by supposing that the world created by god was created in perfection. Hume argues that there is no evidence in this world to support that this world is in anyway perfect. One convincing example is the existence of natural evils in the world. Church theologians tried to explain the existence of evil in the world while being constrained by Empirical Theism, which drove some to a deeper atheism. True Empirical Theists would have to say that either the world is imperfect (causing god to be imperfect) or that God wills suffering and pain. Christian theologians decided that it would be better
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Reed to justify natural evils through God’s will than admitting that the world may not be perfect. Hume makes an assumption that God must be evil if Christian theists believe that all suffering is God’s will. One example of natural evil that Hume uses is the limited capacity of human understanding. “Heaven would be pleased to dissipate, at least alleviate, this profound ignorance, by affording some particular revelation to mankind, and making discoveries of the nature, attributes, and operations of the Divine object of our faith” (Hume 138). Hume is trying to make the case that if God really was all- powerful and good then he would have bestowed humans with the ability to understand him. Hume is also inferring at the same time that God would want mankind to understand
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This essay was uploaded on 04/18/2008 for the course RELS V194 taught by Professor Kaplan during the Spring '06 term at Loyola New Orleans.

Page1 / 6

Emperical Theism - Adam Reed Dr. Kaplan Christianity and...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online