Paul Moser on Kerygmatic Philosophy
December 21, 2008
The blog of the Evangelical Philosophical Society has an interesting interview with Paul Moser, professor of philosophy at Loyola University Chicago (published books). It serves as a good intro to Moser’s work, especially his formulation of, what he calls, “kerygmatic philosophy” (see The Elusive God: Reorienting Religious Epistemology, Cambridge 2008). I particularly liked this bit from the interview:
Who are some thinkers that have influenced your reflection and development of kerygmatic philosophy and its significance?
My perspective on philosophy and epistemology is based on various New Testament writers, particularly Paul and John. I read the Gospel of John as an inherently epistemological gospel, offering the basics of an epistemology of human knowledge of God. I read some sections of Paul’s letters as similarly epistemological, for instance, 1 Cor. 1-2, Rom. 5, 8. It’s noteworthy that the New Testament writers show no need of arguments of natural theology. They do, however, make important cognitive use of the human experience of God’s call, and they acknowledge the importance of the human will in apprehending evidence of divine reality (see, e.g., Jn. 7:17; 1 Jn. 4:8). For some Pauline remarks on God’s call, see, for instance, 1 Cor. 1:9; cf. 1 Cor. 1:2, 26, 7:17–24, Rom. 1:6–7, Eph. 1:18-19. For 20th-century efforts to preserve the central role of God’s call in philosophy and theology, see Emil Brunner, The Divine Imperative, and the works of two evangelical Quaker Christians, Rufus Jones and Thomas R. Kelly (especially the latter’s Testament of Devotion).