From: Howard J. Van Till (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu May 29 2003 - 08:38:30 EDT
I had said,
>> George's judgment here is consistent with the fact that one standard
>> reaction to my presentation of the RFEP is, "Sounds like deism to me."
> I'm not sure what you mean here. I understand that your position is not
> deistic & have pointed that out to others who have thought that it was.
> When I say "do
> not have adequate theological grounding" I mean something quite different
> which I explain in the rest of my earlier post.
Right. I was merely agreeing (to a limited degree at least) with your remark
re "inadequate theological grounding."
For a variety of reasons, many folk desire a more detailed and specific
grounding for RFEP in some traditional theological system. I often point in
a theological direction with my customary reference to the RFEP as an
indicator of God's creativity and generosity, but most people in the
evangelical camp find that unconvincing ( I suspect that it strikes them as
a thinly disguised rationalization of evolution) and want a more tightly
argued theological position, complete with a generous list of biblical
At the moment, however, I would rather not tie the RFEP so tightly to one
specific theological perspective. I see the RFEP more as a broad
metascientific principle that describes a fundamental property of the
universe and less as a principle that could be derived from some particular
>> > In particular, I believe that their major problem is
>> > that they are not properly grounded in christology.
To which I replied,
>> George's preferred approach is to ground the RFEP in his christology,
>> is entirely reasonable, and he does this ably. It is not my intention
>> argue against such an approach, even if I do not hold to it.
> Thanks for the compliment. But this still leaves one wondering
> on what other basis we can claim to know the character of God in a way
> that motivates your understanding of divine action.
I think you were using the word 'character' in a more specific way than I
intended, but that is probably not worth pursuing.
Without any desire to open up a big theological argument here, I will simply
say that I think it is possible to speak meaningfully about a loving
God/World relationship without reference to the cross and substitutionary
atonement. I do not expect you to agree with that.
Howard Van Till
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