Re: Defense of Theism pt 1

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Wed Jun 22 2005 - 07:41:04 EDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Glenn Morton" <>
To: "'George Murphy'" <>; <>
Sent: Wednesday, June 22, 2005 6:40 AM
Subject: RE: Defense of Theism pt 1

>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: George Murphy []
>> Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2005 10:35 PM
>> I assumed that you were trying to be precise in this discussion. You
>> have
>> shifted here from "concordance between religion and science" to "concord
>> between reality and how we read 'In the Beginning God created the Heavens
>> and the earth.'" Are science and reality to be equated? Is "religion"
>> identical with Gen.1:1?
> I don't see much difference. The point is, that science is widely viewed
> as
> telling us about reality. I don't know how many times in our debates I
> have
> stated this. If we try to say that religion/ the bible is not meant to
> tell
> us science, and science is widely viewed as telling us about reality, then
> what we do to our religion is advertise on a billboard with huge letters,
> I don't know about you, but I find such an offer about like believing in
> scientology.

I don't want to distract you from developing your "Defense" & am going to be
away next week (teaching a science-theology course) so don't feel required
to respond to this point now. But I think there's a VAST difference. You
seem to be saying that reality is what science can tell us (even if you make
the "is widely viewed" qualification), & that the reality of religion is to
be judged solely in scientific terms. This comes unpleasantly close to
Tipler's notion that theology should become a branch of physics. In reality
(!), science & theology deal with different aspects of reality. They
overlap in some areas & meet in certain limit questions (like "Why is there
something rather than nothing) so I'm NOT arguing that they're totally
separate - as with NOMA or Bultmann.

>> You list "god-like properties" and "god-like attributes" but do not
>> define
>> "god-like powers."
> That one is a bit overly pedantic but I will change it.

Pedantry is my profession! Seriously, I thought from the way you presented
your initial post that you wanted suggestions for clarifying, fine-tuning &c
your arguments. Several of my comments were made with that in view.

> The above finely-sliced distinction, makes me want to make one more
> comment
> about your question in the last note about how I would get this thread to
> Christianity. If you note the title of this thread, it is a defense of
> theism. I find it odd that you equate theism with Christianity. While
> Christianity is theistic, theism is not Christianity.

Precisely & you'll see that I said just that at the end of my initial
response. I do see that you're defending "theism" but the fact that you're
concerned withy Christianity is very close to the surface of your argument &
sometimes breaks through explicitly, so I thought you were in fact going to
go beyond mere theism. But now I won't expect that.

Received on Wed Jun 22 07:46:16 2005

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