Augustine thought of miracles simply as unusual events that contradict our accustomed views of the course of nature but not nature itself. According to that definition of miracle, no contradiction of natural laws need be assumed. It is sufficient to regard unusual occurrences as "signs" of God’s special activity in creation. (edited).
. Philip Hefner's focus on contingency and field as the guiding concepts in my thinking and his characterization of my theological enterprise as a Lakatosian research program are appropriate and helpful.I welcome Jeffrey Wicken's holistic approach to the emergence of life. Theology can appropriate the language of self‐organizing systems exploiting the thermodynamic flow of energy degradation for interpreting organic life as a creation of the Spirit of God.However, I cannot sympathize with Lindon Eaves's equation of “hard science” with a reductionism (...) which raises the double helix to the status of icon; the “meaning” of DNA derives from its place in the total phenomenon of life—not the reverse.Frank Tipler's cosmology raises the prospect of a rapprochement between physics and theology in the area of eschatology. A Christian cosmology, however, would require at least three modifications: contingency in the history of creation; the uniqueness of Jesus' resurrection; and the relation of these to the problem of evil. (shrink)
Although modern society emancipated itself from its Christian roots, Christian motivs continue to be effective even in the realm oflaw. Thus, in the 16. cent., the idea oftoleration had Christian, though not ecclesiastic origins. In a Christian perspective, however, toleration does not entail complete neutrality in all religious matters and on the part of society and legal order such complete neutrality is to be considered delusive. The positive attitude of Christians toward the German constitution is largely bound up with its (...) emphasis on human dignity, which is rooted in the biblical idea of the human person being created in the image of God. In the reality of modern society, on the other hand, personal selfrealization tends to become the fundamental human right, and on certain points issues in conflicts with the priority of human dignity. Here, the idea of freedom degenerates into licence, which in a Christian perspective is sin. Another area of particular concern for Christians in the legal system is marriage and family. Here, the author pleads for the Christian emphasis on marriage as basis of the family and indicates its legal consequences. (shrink)
. The concepts of space and time are important in physics and geometry, but their definition is not the exclusive prerogative of those sciences. Space and time are important for ordinary human experience, as well as for philosophy and theology. Samuel Clarke, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, Isaac Newton, Immanuel Kant, and Albert Einstein are important figures in shaping our understandings of space, time, and eternity. The author subjects their arguments to critical examination. Space is neither an infinite and empty receptacle nor (...) a system of relations in the mind . Infinite space and time can be interpreted as expressing God's eternity and omnipresence in relating to the creation , but such an interpretation is enhanced by Kant's thinking, to clarify that even though time and space are differentiated in individual events, the whole is at the same time present. Even human experience recognizes this wholeness, and for God eternity is the simultaneous presence and possession of the wholeness. The temporal existence of finite entities is also related to a future participation in God's eternal life. Concepts of contingency are brought into the discussion as well. (shrink)