Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview
Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane)
This Page provides (where held) the Abstract of the above Book and those of all the Papers contained in it.
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BOOK ABSTRACT:

Amazon Customer Review

  1. We live in a modern culture that is not interested in the cultivation of the mind. This is true inside the church as well as outside. In Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview, authors Moreland and Craig, who are among the best in Christian scholars, place all of the fundamental concepts needed to provide a strong foundation for intellectual growth in one volume. The book is primarily written for the Christian but is very accessible for the non-Christian who is interested in the debate.
  2. The book begins by laying down a philosophical groundwork concerning concepts such as logic & rationality, epistemological issues such as truth and knowledge, and various important issues in metaphysics. Gradually, as the concepts build, the book covers areas in philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, ethics, concepts of God, arguments for the existence of God, Christian doctrines, etc.
  3. This book is a philosophical text and should be treated as such. That is, it should be rigorously studied and not just read. Most people who have not contended with weighty concepts in philosophy and religion may find some sections tedious and difficult to grapple with - hence the need to study. Fear not however, for the book is intended for the beginner and intermediate levels of understanding. Bold face text will alert readers to key definitions and concepts, and the chapters end with summary and list of concepts that should be mastered. Footnotes are placed at the end of book so as to not clutter the text.
  4. Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview is an indispensable scholarly work that combines classical apologetics with fundamental philosophical concepts. It is sure to provide a solid platform by which the Christian can conduct his or her intellectual life. It also exemplifies the intellectual rigor that we have come to know in J.P. Moreland and William Lane Craig.
  5. Aristotle1 once said that the unexamined life is not worthy to be lived. With this book, one is well on their way to an examined life. It is high quality indeed.

Contents
    Outline of the Book
    An Invitation to Christian Philosophy – 1
    Part I – Introduction
  1. What Is Philosophy? – 11
  2. Argumentation and Logic – 28
    Part II – Epistemology
  3. Knowledge and Rationality – 71
  4. The Problem of Skepticism – 91
  5. The Structure of Justification – 110
  6. Theories of Truth and Postmodernism – 130
  7. Religious Epistemology – 154
    Part III – Metaphysics
  8. What Is Metaphysics? – 173
  9. General Ontology: Existence, Identity and Reductionism – 187
  10. General Ontology: Two Categories — Property and Substance – 204
  11. The Mind-Body Problem: Dualism – 228
  12. The Mind-Body Problem: Alternatives to Dualism – 247
  13. Free Will and Determinism – 267
  14. Personal Identity and Life after Death2 – 285
    Part IV – Philosophy of Science
  15. Scientific Methodology – 307
  16. The Realism-Antirealism Debate – 326
  17. Philosophy and the Integration of Science and Theology – 346
  18. Philosophy Of Time and Space – 368
    Part V – Ethics
  19. Ethics, Morality and Metaethics – 393
  20. Ethical Relativism and Absolutism – 406
  21. Normative Ethical Theories: Egoism and Utilitarianism – 425
  22. Normative Ethical Theories: Deontological and Virtue Ethics – 446
    Part VI – Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology
  23. The Existence of God (I) – 463
  24. The Existence of God (II) – 482
  25. The Coherence of Theism (I) –- 501
  26. The Coherence of Theism (II) – 517
  27. The Problem of Evil – 536
  28. Creation, Providence and Miracle – 554
  29. Christian Doctrines (I): The Trinity – 575
  30. Christian Doctrines (II): The Incarnation – 597
  31. Christian Doctrines (III): Christian Particularism – 615
    Suggestions for Further Reading – 627
    Name Index – 640
    Subject Index – 642
    Scripture Index – 654



In-Page Footnotes ("Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview")

Footnote 1: Actually, it was Plato’s Socrates. For an unappreciative comment by Julian Baggini in The Guardian – see Link.


BOOK COMMENT:

InterVarsity Press (1 April 2003)



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - An Invitation to Christian Philosophy"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Notes
  1. My Initial Thoughts:
    • This isn’t a book on the philosophy of Christianity, whereby the tenets of Christianity are investigated using the tools of analytic philosophy. Rather, it is a book for Christians – those who have (for whatever reason) – a prior and irrevocable belief in Christianity (the book would say “Christ”), and wish to “have their minds toughened up a bit”.
    • I have no doubt there will be many useful spin-offs for the uncommitted, since Moreland and Craig are competent philosophers. But the intentions of the book must not be lost sight of (and no doubt the intentions will be “in your face” throughout).
    • So, while the Christian doctrines will be up for discussion, there will never be any chance that one of them will be overthrown in an evangelical tome. The reader will be left with the impression that all avenues have been covered, but they will not have been.
    • My main initial concern is that analytic philosophy is (to use Dennett’s1 expression concerning Evolution) the “universal acid”. It is – or ought to be – prior to any other discipline. It is not the hand-maiden of theology (or of science, for that matter), but asks questions more fundamental than any other disciplines (apart from its own sub-discipline of metaphilosophy2).
    • So, while everyone comes to philosophy with lots of intellectual baggage, the tradition since Socrates has been that our prior beliefs are confused and are to be critiqued and initially thrown into further confusion before (hopefully) being sorted out by philosophical analysis. Everything is up for grabs.
    • Hence, to use the techniques of the discipline to find better reasons to believe what you believed before “on instinct3” is – strictly speaking – an abuse of the discipline, even if most philosophers are tempted to follow this path. It is not pure philosophy, but applied philosophy (or a particular application of “philosophical methods4”).
    • Anyway, we now proceed to a discussion of the actual text.
  2. Why Philosophy Matters (pp. 1-7)
    • The Chapter starts with a long quotation from Charles Malik, speaking in 1980, to the effect that there are two tasks for evangelism saving the soul and saving the mind. Malik bemoans the (then) fact that Christians are too quick to “get on with the job” and don’t converse with the great minds of the past5. Nor were they (then) up to scratch when compared to contemporary secular intellectuals, so that the “evangelical mode of thinking” had no chance of becoming dominant in the universities.
    • The authors broadly agree and ask the reader if he realises that Enlightenment naturalism and postmodern anti-realism are arrayed in an unholy alliance against a broadly theistic and specifically Christian worldview. This seems to misplace the debate. In the UK, at any rate, “the Christian worldview” is largely ignored rather than being engaged in “intellectual struggle”, and “Enlightenment naturalism” has more in common with Christianity than it does with postmodernism, so there’s no alliance between these two.
    • The authors point out the importance of “the University” in shaping our culture and leaders.
    • Also, they point out that “the Gospel” is always delivered in a context, and in a secular society can seem as “freakish” as Hare Krishna, if it is not an “intellectually viable option”.
    • The authors (correctly6) state that – since philosophy is foundational to every7 discipline at the University – it is the most strategic discipline to be influenced for Christ.
    • The author’s note that there’s been a resurgence of Christian influence on – and representation within – Anglo-American8 philosophy departments since the 1960s. The rather pessimistic (but important – as a “call to arms” of naturalists) "Smith (Quentin) - The Metaphilosophy of Naturalism" is references. Skinner thinks a quarter to a third of A-A philosophy professors are theists, but our authors think this is probably optimistic. They also put a different spin on the figures. Smith thinks of this Christian enclave as “a last stronghold” of theistic representation in academia, while our authors think of it as a “beachhead”.
  3. An Invitation to Dialogue (p. 7)
  4. My Concluding Thoughts




In-Page Footnotes ("Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - An Invitation to Christian Philosophy")

Footnote 1: In "Dennett (Daniel) - Darwin's Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life".

Footnote 2: See "Williamson (Timothy) - The Philosophy of Philosophy".

Footnote 3: To adapt the famous quotation from Bradley – “Metaphysics is the finding of bad reasons for what we believe upon instinct” (see Link).

Footnote 4: By analogy with Mathematics.

Footnote 5: Malik would have the Christian spend years poring over Plato, Aristotle or Augustine.

Footnote 6:
  • Actually, there are disputes amongst philosophers, and between philosophers of “X” and practitioners of “X”, as to whether “philosophy of X” is logically prior to, and normative for, “X”, or whether it is merely descriptive and clarificatory.
  • See "Shapiro (Stewart) - What Is So Interesting about Mathematics (for a Philosopher?)", where X = Mathematics,
  • and it is reported that the range of stances goes from “philosophy first” to “philosophy last, if at all”.
Footnote 7:
  • Actually, they claim – with the medievals – that theology is the “queen of the sciences”, but in theology’s absence philosophy will do as a regent.
  • My view is that this is entirely wrong – pace Plantinga and his “reformed epistemology” – as is demonstrated by the philosophy of religion.
Footnote 8: I suspect there’s a greater Christian representation in US philosophy departments than in the UK.



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Introduction"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. What Is Philosophy? – 11
  2. Argumentation and Logic – 28


COMMENT: Part I



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Epistemology"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. Knowledge and Rationality – 71
  2. The Problem of Skepticism – 91
  3. The Structure of Justification – 110
  4. Theories of Truth and Postmodernism – 130
  5. Religious Epistemology – 154


COMMENT: Part II



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Metaphysics"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. What Is Metaphysics? – 173
  2. General Ontology: Existence, Identity and Reductionism – 187
  3. General Ontology: Two Categories — Property and Substance – 204
  4. The Mind-Body Problem: Dualism – 228
  5. The Mind-Body Problem: Alternatives to Dualism – 247
  6. Free Will and Determinism – 267
  7. Personal Identity and Life after Death1 – 285


COMMENT: Part III



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Philosophy of Science"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. Scientific Methodology – 307
  2. The Realism-Antirealism Debate – 326
  3. Philosophy and the Integration of Science and Theology – 346
  4. Philosophy Of Time and Space – 368


COMMENT: Part IV



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Ethics"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. Ethics, Morality and Metaethics – 393
  2. Ethical Relativism and Absolutism – 406
  3. Normative Ethical Theories: Egoism and Utilitarianism – 425
  4. Normative Ethical Theories: Deontological and Virtue Ethics – 446


COMMENT: Part V



"Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview: Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology"

Source: Moreland (J.P.) & Craig (William Lane) - Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview


Contents
  1. The Existence of God (I) – 463
  2. The Existence of God (II) – 482
  3. The Coherence of Theism (I) –- 501
  4. The Coherence of Theism (II) – 517
  5. The Problem of Evil – 536
  6. Creation, Providence and Miracle – 554
  7. Christian Doctrines (I): The Trinity – 575
  8. Christian Doctrines (II): The Incarnation – 597
  9. Christian Doctrines (III): Christian Particularism – 615


COMMENT: Part VI



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  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)



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