By Emil Brunner
This booklet via Charles Scribner's Sons in 1948 is an element I or Foundations of the lectures given in 1947.
Read or Download Christianity and Civilisation - I - First Part: Foundations (Gifford Lectures Delivered at the University of St. Andrews 1947) PDF
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Additional resources for Christianity and Civilisation - I - First Part: Foundations (Gifford Lectures Delivered at the University of St. Andrews 1947)
It is therefore questionable whether we ;)re justified in speaking oE " eternal laws ". All laws, whether natural or moral, belong to the created world. God's own will can never be expressed ultimately in terms of law, because the freedom of His love as well as of His holiness is above them. If theology speaks of the law of God's own being, we must take care that we are not caught in our own words, putting abstractions above God's free will. The physics of to-day, in distinction from that of Laplace's time, has made it possible again to hold fast the Biblical idea of God without getting into a conflict with natural law.
God's own will can never be expressed ultimately in terms of law, because the freedom of His love as well as of His holiness is above them. If theology speaks of the law of God's own being, we must take care that we are not caught in our own words, putting abstractions above God's free will. The physics of to-day, in distinction from that of Laplace's time, has made it possible again to hold fast the Biblical idea of God without getting into a conflict with natural law. Without entering the difficult and controversial consequences of the Q i i z z x n theory and without making a premature use of its startling results, we may safely say that the 18th and 19th century idea of an absolute worlddetermination by natural law, presupposing the idea of a " closed Univeae " as pronounced by Laplace, has broken down.
Of course this transcendence of God's being should never be confused with a transcendence of God's activity. The transcendent God-that is, the God who has the monopoly of divinity-is not separated from His creation. Distinction is not separation. God's being is distinguished from that of the world, but the world exists by His sustaining presence and activity. That God whom Goethe scorns (" Was war' ein Gott, der nur von aussen stiesse "), is not the God of Biblical revelation, but of ratiohistic deism.