Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Revelation Positivism: Reasoning with Faith in #KBCDIII

In the last post, I insisted to you that Barth blows away the assumed conflict between faith and reason as modes of knowing, replacing it with a surer ground in the difference between the two objects of theological and natural sciences: God, and the non-God world. But the next thing I'm going to tell you, as he goes on in CD III.1, is that we only know about creation as an article of faith. That we cannot reason our way to knowledge of creation. Is this a contradiction? Not really. The important question is, on what basis can we reason about creation?

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Faith and Reason: Non-Competition in #KBCDIII

Barth is killing some sacred cows in Church Dogmatics III, and one of the biggest is the presumed conflict between faith and reason. It's fair to say he's been doing this from the very beginning, but since CD III.1 opens Barth's attempt to write a workable theological metaphysics for anthropology, it comes up again in exactly the place we always presume there should be conflict. The world vs. God. Creation myth vs. verifiable science. Two great magisterial canons, set up to fire at one another. And for what?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Tackling Creation: A Flying Leap into #KBCDIII

Over on Twitter, there's been a 5-page-a-day reading group going on, marching through Barth's Church Dogmatics volume III under the hashtag #KBCDIII. I chose (possibly to the detriment of my followers!) to "live-tweet" my way through each day's page count in order to get a more detailed sense of what is going on in my favorite volume of the CD.

I've since fallen off that discipline a bit (because real life), but I've learned a good bit from it, and I intend to get back on the horse. Still, given a bit of breathing space, I want to go back and highlight the most interesting points. Barth pounds the nails in on some very controversial coffins here, declaring quite a few of the perennial (bad) arguments in Religion and Science stone dead, as well as several in the philosophy of religion. I'm going to run a brief series, just on the first section of material, to show off some of those decisive moments. Today, the introduction.