God, and therefore faith, is shown to us plainly everyday. We should all pray for those that do not have belief that they may be enlightened by the Holy Spirit and their nous opened to the word of God.
Lord have mercy.
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Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:17 PM
Posted 27 September 2013 - 06:40 PM
Your quote from St John is very relevant to what I was thinking. In the opening sentence of his first letter the Apostle writes: "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life."
Beyond this, in line with what Dr Pennock had quoted certain fathers as saying--that knowledge (or evidence) precedes faith--I've been thinking of what St Paul had to say: "God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made." He must have had Psalm 19 (Hebrew numbering) in mind: "The heavens declare the glory of God."
If evidence precedes faith, if faith is built on a foundation of what can be "clearly seen," the atheist has a lifeline. If the atheist rejects reason and evidence, that lifeline is cut and atheism becomes invincible.
Posted 27 September 2013 - 11:57 PM
Posted 28 September 2013 - 01:11 PM
‘No one has seen God at any time’ (John 1:18) and since there is much suffering, it seems that the world is ruled by evil (John 12:31). Christ, though, says: ‘I will manifest Myself’ to the person who loves Him (John 14:21).
Few people can have seen as much natural evidence of the world as the broadcaster and naturalist Sir David Attenborough but he is an atheist. He does not lack love of his fellows: indeed, his reason for being an atheist is his inability to reconcile an all-powerful loving God with the suffering that the natural world causes (in the form of diseases caused by organisms). Ironically, some people have found in his programmes compelling (for them) evidence for the existence of God: ‘O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.’
Posted 15 May 2017 - 05:39 PM
Forgive me for the thread resurrection, but I wanted to lead a particular aspect that seemed to be implied, but not explicitly stated in this discussion.
Since God is "faithful", can "faith" essentially be a partaking of the divine nature in some sort? Could faith be, in Palamite terms, a "divine energy"? What did St. Gregory Palamas believe about "faith"?
It would make sense considering that faith comes from relationship and revelation, and that this aspect becomes a "gift from God". But I haven't found anything explicit on the "uncreated" aspect of faith, so I was hoping to get some sort of an academic answer here.
Posted 16 May 2017 - 11:16 PM
What a great question. It makes sense, though I am not sure to what extent an academic answer will be relevant for matters of faith.
However, If you have Prof. Veniamin's notated translation of St Gregory's homilies, I checked and there is an entry in the index on faith that lists all the places the word is used in the book. There is no entry for "faithful" though.
Maybe a good place to start though would be a word study on the connection between the Greek words for faith and faithful and how these tended to be used and understood within the cultural and philosophical context of the time.
Another thing to check out is the writings of the desert fathers. They often have an understanding of faith that is from the point of view of the spiritual struggle and more direct cooperation with and deification by God, rather than merely as an intellectual activity of believing.
In the sermon on baptism St Gregory makes a direct connection between faith, faithfulness and a real participation in the sacrament, likewise connecting unbelief, turning away and being outside of Christ (despite having been baptized) . Likewise there is a pretty direct connection between the faithfulness of Christ and our sacramental participation in making His faithfulness/obedience our own in aligning ourselves with Him.
Posted 19 May 2017 - 06:10 PM
In fact "a belief held in the absence of evidence" sounds as if it should define something -- but I'm not sure what. It sounds closer to credulity. What's the word we need here?
Edited by Ken McRae, 19 May 2017 - 06:12 PM.
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