The Rationality of Christian Theism
Since its inception, Christianity has been marked by a close, but also frequently tense, relationship to philosophy. Tertullian’s rhetorical cry — What has Athens to do with Jerusalem? What has the academy in common with the Church? — did not keep him from letting his stoic philosophical convictions profoundly inflect his theology Clement of Alexandria, on the other hand, in describing Christianity as the true philosophy, had no intention of passing it off as merely illustrative of a conception of God attainable by philosophy quite apart from the Christian faith. What he had rather in mind was the transformation and elevation of philosophy into Christian theology; for philosophers, according to their own admission, merely seek after the wisdom they love, whereas in Jesus Christ the divine wisdom itself became visible (Strom, VIII,lf.). But even to identify Christianity with true philosophy involves a conflict with philosophy — insofar as philosophy resists or rejects any such identification and consequent transformation into theology.
KeywordsChristian Faith Rational Reconstruction Christian Theology Heavenly Motion Christian Doctrine
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- 1.On this, cf. my: ‚Die Rationalität der Theologie‘, in: W. Pannenberg, M. Kessler, and H. J. Pottmeyer (eds.), Fides Quaerens Intellectum: Beiträge zur Fundamentaltheologie, Festschrift for M. Seckler, Francke, Tübingen, 1992, 533-44 (esp. 538ff.).Google Scholar