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Thomas Aquinas on God and Evil // Reviews // Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // University of Notre Dame
God is "the ultimate good", which does not mean that God should be thought of as having moral virtues as we do (chapter 6): when speaking of divine goodness Aquinas never mentions duties or obligations on God's part. For that matter, as Davies notes, the notion of moral obligation does not lie at the heart of his ethical theory concerning ourselves.

With these non-controversial principles in place Davies can move to consider evil. For Aquinas, there cannot be a material world such as ours without material agents interacting -- which will include injuring each other ("evil suffered"): wolves eat lambs and so on (chapter 7). We might think that God ought to have made a world without evil suffered let alone evil done. God could have done so, Aquinas thought, but such a world would not be remotely like ours -- "ours being a material world in which some things flourish at the expense of others, and one in which there are people able not to choose well" (p. 72). Wicked acts, "evil done", "are evidently beings and classified in the category of being", as Aquinas says, but the evil in evil done "has a cause only in the sense that it can be accounted for in terms of someone not choosing to act well, not in the sense that it is something made to exist by God" (p. 71). The key point, again, is that Aquinas does not regard God's goodness as definable by anything that we might treat as moral obligation. Moreover, the "free-will defense" plays no part in this account: God does not merely "permit" us to do sinful things, these things are caused to be by God just like everything else. Human freedom never consists in our acting independently of God. On the other hand, for Aquinas, this does not mean, as we might be tempted to conclude, that God determines our acts. Rather, as creatively causing us to act as we do, God makes us do as we do by our own undertaking. God does not interfere even in the sinful choices that we make.
philosophy  theology 
yesterday by campion1581
Americans' beliefs about the nature of God
But young adults are far less likely than their older counterparts to say they believe in God as described in the Bible. Whereas roughly two-thirds of adults ages 50 and older say they believe in the biblical God, just 49% of those in their 30s and 40s and just 43% of adults under 30 say the same. A similar share of adults ages 18 to 29 say they believe in another higher power (39%).
atheism  theology  polling 
yesterday by micah.dennis
Opinion | When Americans Avoid ‘God Talk’ - The New York Times
Mr. Merritt’s God talk can therefore be broadened to very positive ends. For common cause, “gospel” can be “moral code”; “saved” can be replaced with “enlightened” and so on. A new vocabulary can unite moral Americans of all religious stripes or none at all.
theology  atheism 
yesterday by micah.dennis
Why would Apollo make positive statements about Judaism?
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type: article
author: van der Horst, Pieter
publication: Aeon
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Pagans against Genesis: Confused, inferior and philosophically unsound: the Greco-Roman critique of the Old Testament could have been written today
theology  article  bible  philosophy  origen  celsus  porphyry  genesis  christianity  judaism  greco-roman  anthropocentrism  platonism  numenius  moses  julian-the-apostate  cosmogony 
yesterday by minttoothpick
Teologins roll och funktion
Teologins roll och funktion
SIGNUMS REDAKTION

Utifrån Ulf Jonssons debattartikel ”Hur bedriva teologisk forskning?” (Signum nr 3 2001) utspann sig i Signum under den gångna hösten ett samtal mellan Gösta Hallonsten och Ulf Jonsson om betingelserna för bedrivandet av teologi i Sverige och om den akademiska teologins förhållande till kyrkorna (se Signum nr 7 och 8 2001).

Eftersom redaktionen menar att debatten om teologins betingelser här i landet är angelägen, har vi bett ett antal initierade personer att kommentera denna debatt. Vi publicerar här de inkomna bidragen. Teol. dr Cristina Grenholm är docent i tros- och livsåskådningsvetenskap vid Karlstads universitet, teol. dr Thomas Ekstrand undervisar i tros- och livsåskådningsvetenskap och är studierektor vid Teologiska institutionen vid Uppsala universitet, teol. dr Lars Cavallin är biskopsvikarie för södra regionen av Stockholms katolska stift.
sweden  academia  theology  catholic  svenska_kyrkan 
yesterday by benjekman

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