There are countless lectures and sermons addressing the subject of evil. And as you would imagine, and probably already know, some handle the subject with profundity, while yet others drop the ball… Big time. There are also those who approach the subject with philosophical flare, dazzling their listeners with logical syllogisms and lofty language, the kind heard only in the still corridors of an ivory tower. To the average ear it sounds strange, a bit bizarre, perhaps, or even esoteric.
The following lecture is a curious mixture of all three. Peter Williams understands the current landscape of academia, when it comes to this subject (and many other subjects for that matter). So the talk is technical. Props to him for that. And he’s a good speaker as well. Props again. The problem, in my opinion, is that he falls into the trap that most philosophers stumble into. They forget to lean more on the Scriptures.
Now granted, there is a place for responding to high-brow atheism, which is to say that there are many sophisticated works out there. So yes, those works deserve a careful answer. But can’t a careful and philosophically articulate response wear the categories of Scripture more faithfully? I know it’s easy for me to say that from the comfort of my black swivel chair, but it’s true.
So here’s the bottom line with this lecture. It’s interesting and thought-provoking, even illuminating at times. But there are some points that need ditched, which is to say that rationalism often diminishes God’s glory. Read the prophets and then listen to this and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
Christian philosophers must preserve that element… because Christianity is true after all, right?
Must Listen Factor: Specialized. Philosophy buffs will enjoy this. As for the rest of us mortals, you’ve been duly warned.
Difficulty: Fairly advanced.
Length: 46 minutes.
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