Language, Logic, and God

Language, Logic, and God

Language, Logic, and God

Language, Logic, and God

Excerpt

This book is an attempt to fill the present striking need for an introduction to contemporary linguistic philosophy as it bears on theological discourse. Wherever I have gone, recently, among educated Christians in Britain and America, I have encountered profound curiosity--and a good deal of anxiety--concerning modern methods in philosophy as they relate to the logical nature and validity of theological affirmations. Similarly I have found many of my students in contemporary philosophy and in the philosophy of religion becoming deeply absorbed in the issues raised by a critical examination of theological speech. From both groups, the intellectually alert Christians and the thoughtful graduate and undergraduate students of philosophy and religion, I have been heavily bombarded with appeals for direction to some book which would (1) set forth the central issues and arguments concerning theological discourse for readers who have familiarity with traditional philosophy but who are relatively untrained in contemporary philosophical practices and (2) place into perspective the present state of philosophical and theological discussion in this area of burgeoning interest. To my frustration, I have had to answer such requests with the admission that no such book exists and with the promise that I would try, some day, to provide that book myself. In preparing this volume, therefore, I have done my best to keep those promises in mind.

A word or two here concerning my use of the phrase "theological language" may prevent misunderstanding later. I do not employ this phrase in its narrow sense to refer merely to the discourse of academic theologians. I want it to be taken in its most inclusive sense, referring both to the language of theologians in their studies . . .

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