Slicing Up the Metaphysical Pie

16 types of gods

One basic question in metaphysics is this:How many gods exist?Atheism can be defined as the view that there are 0 gods. Monotheism is the view that there is just 1 god. Polytheism is the view that there are 2 or more gods.Thus all of the various answers to the metaphysical question above are included in these three categories.The term polytheism, however, is a very broad category that includes many different and conflicting answers to the question above.Manichaeism - the … [Read more...]

Best of All Possible Persons

Now this supreme wisdom, united to a goodness that is no less infinite, cannot but have chosen the best... If there were not the best among all possible worlds, God would not have produced any. (Gottfried Leibniz, Theodicy, translated by E.M. Huggard, 1951, p.128)According to Anselm, God is the being than which none greater can be conceived. In other words, God is the best of all possible persons. According to Leibniz, the best of all possible persons would have to create the best of all … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exit? – Part 22

I have argued that the agreement that exists between the seven gospel sources concerning the Minimal Jesus Hypothesis, could be explained on the basis of the common cultural idea of a 'Messiah'. I conceded, however, that the crucifixion of the Messiah was not a part of the expectation of first century Palestinian Jews, but pointed out that the crucifixion of Jesus and surrounding events are described only in Mark and the Gospel of Peter, and not in the other gospel sources that Ehrman points us … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exit? – Index

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularoutpost/2013/06/05/did-jesus-exit-part-1/ Introduction to the issue: Did Jesus exist?http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularoutpost/2013/06/07/did-jesus-exit-part-2/ Outline of Did Jesus Exist? By Bart Ehrman. Various skeptical points by Ehrman, especially the insignificance of non-Christian historical sources.http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularoutpost/2013/06/10/did-jesus-exit-part-3/ Keith Parson’s advice and Bart Ehrman on the Minimal Jesus H … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exit? – Part 21

I have reviewed Q, M, and L passages, looking for crucifixion-related events.The Gospel of Mark includes several crucifixion-related events in Chapters 14 and 15:1. The Plot to Kill Jesus 2. The Anointing at Bethany 3. Judas Agrees to Betray Jesus 4. The Passover with the Disciples 5. The Institution of the Lord's Supper 6. Peter's Denial Foretold 7. Jesus Prays in Gethsemane 8. The Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus 9. Jesus Before the Council 10. Peter Denies Jesus 11. Jesus Before … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exit? – Part 20

The Minimal Jesus Hypothesis (MJH) can be stated in terms of a list of a dozen attributes:A1. This person was a flesh-and-blood person. A2. This person was an adherent of Judaism. A3. This person was a male descendant of the Hebrew people. A4. This person lived in Palestine as an adult (in his twenties and/or thirties) in the 20s CE. A5. This person was know to be a preacher of religious beliefs. A6. This person was known to be a preacher of moral values. A7. This person was known to … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exit? – Part 19

In Part 14, we saw that Mark portrays Jesus as a devout follower of the Jewish faith. In Part 15, we saw that Q portrays Jesus as a devout follower of the Jewish faith. Does L, the special source used by Luke, portray Jesus as an adherent of Judaism? as a devout follower of the Jewish faith? While the evidence is not as extensive as it is in the case of Mark and Q, the evidence is fairly clear that Jesus is portrayed by L as a devout follower of the Jewish faith.Jesus and the Jewish … [Read more...]

One Man’s Modus Ponens…Part 6

In Chapter 3 of Handbook of Christian Apologetics (hereafter: HOCA), Peter Kreeft and Ronald Tacelli present twenty arguments for the existence of God. The very first argument is one of the Five Ways of Aquinas. This is not surprising, since Kreeft is a Catholic:The universe is the sum total of all these moving things, however many there are. The whole universe is in the process of change. But we have already seen that change in any being requires an outside force to actualize it. … [Read more...]


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