Natural Signs and Knowledge of God

Natural Signs and Knowledge of God : A New Look at Theistic Arguments

4.17 (28 ratings by Goodreads)
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Is there such a thing as natural knowledge of God? C. Stephen Evans presents the case for understanding theistic arguments as expressions of natural signs in order to gain a new perspective both on their strengths and weaknesses. Three classical, much-discussed theistic arguments - cosmological, teleological, and moral - are examined for the natural signs they embody.
At the heart of this book lie several relatively simple ideas. One is that if there is a God of the kind accepted by Christians, Jews, and Muslims, then it is likely that a 'natural' knowledge of God is possible. Another is that this knowledge will have two characteristics: it will be both widely available to humans and yet easy to resist. If these principles are right, a new perspective on many of the classical arguments for God's existence becomes possible. We understand why these arguments
have for many people a continued appeal but also why they do not constitute conclusive 'proofs' that settle the debate once and for all.
Touching on the interplay between these ideas and contemporary scientific theories about the origins of religious belief, particularly the role of natural selection in predisposing humans to form beliefs in God or gods, Evans concludes that these scientific accounts of religious belief are fully consistent, even supportive, of the truth of religious convictions.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 137 x 221 x 13mm | 289g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0199661073
  • 9780199661077
  • 831,014

Table of contents

1. The Problem of Natural Theology ; 2. The Concept of a Natural Sign ; 3. Cosmic Wonder and Cosmological Arguments for God ; 4. Beneficial Order and Teleological Arguments for God ; 5. Moral Arguments and Natural Signs for God ; 6. Conclusions: Can We Rely on Natural Signs for a
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Review quote

Evans' book is a characteristic combination of careful attention to neglected historical ideas and insightful analysis of a broad range of contemporary issues ... Natural Signs and Knowledge of God has much to offer philosophers and theologians, but the most significant contribution of Evans' book may well be to motivate and otherwise support broadly theistic research programs in the human sciences. * Todd Buras, Books and Culture * This is an impressive book. It is rigorously argued but not written in dense or technical language. As well as philosophers, it should appeal to anyone with a serious interest in Christian apologetics. * Church of England Newspaper * This is a richand rewarding book that reaffirms the rationality of belief in God, while opening up a subtly different approach to theistic apologetics that could well be of considerable value. * Alister McGrath, Theology * lucidly written and carefully argued * John Cottingham, Times Literary Supplement * Evans has here made a valuable and original contribution to the field of religious epistemology. Natural Signs and Knowledge of God deserves attention from, and is sure to provoke lively debate between, philosophers of religion and theologians. However, it should also be of interest to, and accessible to, anyone concerned with theistic apologetics. Even someone with little grounding in these issues is likely to gain something from it. * Sarah Adams, Religious Studies *
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Rating details

28 ratings
4.17 out of 5 stars
5 43% (12)
4 32% (9)
3 25% (7)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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