Do people know about God just by being human beings? Or do they need special divine assistance, through the Bible and the church? Natural theology is the idea that human beings "by nature," that is just through being human, know something of God; or that they gain such knowledge from observing the world we live in. Its opposite is revealed theology, or the knowledge of God communicated only through special channelsthrough Jesus Christ, through the Bible, through the church. Natural theology was long accepted as a basic ingredient in all theology, but in the twentieth century it was rejected by important theologians, especially Karl Barth. His views denied all natural theology and placed greater emphasis on the Bible. But what if the Bible itself uses, depends on, and supports natural theology? In this book, Barr pursues these questions within the Bible itself and within the history of ideas, and he looks at their implications for religion and theology in the future.
About the Author
Table of Contents
1. Natural theology in this century: Concepts and approaches