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Introduction to Systematic Theology

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Modern RC Theology is based on the Council of Trent and Vatican Councils I and II ... Methodology summarized in slogan, Credo Ut Intelligam, 'I believe in order that ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Introduction to Systematic Theology


1
Introduction to Systematic Theology
2
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • Not Identical with Roman Catholic Theology
  • Modern RC Theology is based on the Council of
    Trent and Vatican Councils I and II
  • Old Catholic Theology occurs prior to division
    between the western church and the eastern church
    in A.D. 1054
  • Patristic Theology, is the theology of the
    fathers, the first 4, 5 centuries 

3
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • A period of expansion in which there was little
    time for serious reflective work
  • Scripture received with a naïve faith practice
    was valued above theory
  • Attempts to redefine or absorb Christianity by
    other systems, e.g., Gnosticism
  • Reflective, scientific theology began with the
    Apologists, A.D. 120-220
  • Aristedes, Justin Martyr, Athenagoras, Tatian,
    Theophilus, Tertullian
  • Often, they defended Christianity by using pagan
    philosophical terms
  • Such synthesis thinking, using pagan concepts
    or terms to defend Christianity, robbed
    Christianity of its absoluteness

4
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • TERTULLIAN warned against the union of Athens
    and Jerusalem
  • Nevertheless he introduced terms Trinitas,
    Substantia, and Persona into Trinitarian debate
  • The use of pagan terms is acceptable when filled
    with Christian meaning e.g., John 11 kai o
    logoj sarx egeneto
  • Summary of first three centuries Theology was a
    by-product of apologetic activity.

5
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • In the Fourth century, there was the rise of
    internal conflict
  • Theology developed in a polemical context
  • Controversial theology developed over
    Trinitarian/ Christological issues
  • Controversy was primarily within the geographical
    bounds of the eastern church
  • The first four councils of the Church occurred in
    the East (Asia Minor, or modern day Turkey)

6
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
Four Ecumenical Councils
ChalcedonA.D. 451
ConstantinopleA.D. 381
Nicea A.D. 325
Ephesus A.D. 431
7
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
Certain trends developed within the two
geographical divisions
  • WESTERN CHURCH
  • Concern over Person of Christ
  • Man guilty before God
  • Emphasis on Legal (forensic)
  • Law and Grace
  • Rational
  • Roots in Scripture PAUL focused on the Economy
    of Redemption, Justification, Union with Christ
  •  EASTERN CHURCH
  • Concern with being/Trinity
  • Concern with relation of Man to God
  • Interested in nature of Sin
  • defined in terms of God Holy and Just
  • participation in corruption /salvation is
    participation in deity)
  • Ontology- Being/Non-being
  • Mystical
  • Roots in Scripture JOHN focused on the Person of
    Christ, the Ontology of Redemption

8
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
Old Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox
Roman Catholic
Mystical
Forensic
Reformed
Heavily Forensic Mystical Purged
9
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • Origen
  • Wrote De Principiis,
  • On First Principles
  • Regarded by some as the first Systematic Theology
    text
  • John of Damascus
  • Finalized the Eastern doctrine of Trinity
  • The most influential of the Greek theologians

10
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • Augustine
  • Enchiridion ad Laurentium, Handbook for Lawrence
  • Based on a 3-fold division of faith, hope, love
    doctrine, Lords Prayer, ethics
  • Division often reflected in many Protestant
    catechisms
  • Influenced early in life by Manichaeism and
    Neo-Platonism
  • Developed theology of original sin- against
    Pelagianism
  • Developed theology of church/sacrament- against
    Donatus
  • Known for his work in Trinitarian theology and
    his development of double predestination.

11
OLD CATHOLIC THEOLOGY
  • Methodological Considerations
  • Little awareness of covenant
  • First principles inconsistently applied
  • Priority of Scripture for some
  • Priority of pagan philosophical concepts for
    others
  • Cultural influences determined trajectory of
    developing theologies (Eastern/Western)
  • Trinitarian/Christological controversies led to
    significant creedal development

12
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • The Period, A.D. 1050-1517
  • This chronology is based on Gordon Clark, Thales
    to Dewey, 249
  • See also the chronology in William Cunningham,
    Historical Theology, 1, 414
  • Three smaller periods
  • Early Scholasticism, A.D. 1050-1200
  • Lanfranc- Albertus Magnus
  • High Scholasticism, A.D. 1200-1340
  • Albertus Magnus, Aquinas, Bonaventura, Duns
    Scotus
  • Late Scholasticism, A.D. 1340-1517

13
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Libri Quatuor Sententiarum
  • Peter Lombard, Four Books of Sentences written,
    1150-1160
  •  Sic et Non
  • Peter Abelard, Yes and No, lived 1097-1142
  •  Corpus Juris Canonici
  • Gratian, Body of Canon Law, ca .1150

14
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Anselm, A.D. 1033-1109
  • Methodology summarized in slogan, Credo Ut
    Intelligam, I believe in order that I may
    understand
  • For Anselm, Faith is prior to Reason
  • Reacted against the mystical tendencies of
    medieval theology
  • Cur Deus Homo, (Why the God Man?)
  • Introduced satisfaction theory of atonement based
    on Gods majesty being offended
  • Proslogion and Monologion,
  • Developed Ontological argument for existence of
    God

15
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Abelard, A.D. 1079-1142
  • Wrote Sic et Non (Yes and No)
  • Was enthusiastic about dialectical thinking (this
    is the style of Sic et Non)
  • Used dialectics to attempt to explain the
    mysteries of the faith and contradictions found
    in the church fathers.
  • Methodology is summarized in the slogan, I
    believe that which I may understand.

16
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Peter Lombard, A.D. 1095-1159
  • Lombard was a pupil of Abelard
  • His Sentences became the most useful and popular
    text on theology in the middle ages
  • Taught 7 sacraments
  • Based on Sic et Non
  • Was dialectical in style
  • God, Angels and Men, Christ, Church and
    Sacraments
  • Much of medieval theology a mere commentary on
    the Sentences

17
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Thomas Aquinas, A.D. 1225-1274
  • Wrote Summa Theologiae, (Compendium or Totality
    of Theology)
  • Most important theology text to come from the
    Scholastic period.
  • He employed a Nature/Grace scheme
  • Grace complements and completes Nature
  • Synthesized Aristotle and Scripture
  • Begin with Reason
  • Revelation complements and completes Reason

18
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • For Aquinas, the value of natural theology
  • Its provision of a foundation of truth accessible
    to all
  • Other truths about God (i.e., his Tri-unity) are
    not available through natural theology
  • These must be accepted on the authority of the
    Church
  • The Summa consists of three parts
  • God as he is in himself
  • God as mans end (and the way back to God)
  • Christ as mans way to God

19
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY
  • Trends in Scholasticism
  • see Tillich, History of Christian Thought, 140
  • Dialectics (Yes and No Nature and Grace Reason
    and Revelation)
  • Augustinianism and Aristotelianism
  • For Augustinians- priority of faith
  • For Aristotelians- priority of reason
  • Thomism and Scotism
  • Thomists intellect, preeminent characteristic of
    God
  • Scotists will, preeminent characteristic of God
  • Nominalism and Realism

20
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY Defects
  • Methodologically No clear authority governing
    how one does theology
  • No principium theologiae, first principle,
  • How does that differ from today!?
  • The Word of God was greatly neglected
  • Many could not read the biblical languages and
    worked only with the Latin Vulgate
  • Instead, there were several substitutes for the
    authority of the Word
  • Tradition
  • Philosophy
  • Mysticism

21
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY Defects
  • The results of Scholasticism may be described as
    ambiguous
  • Much discussion about useless/unprofitable
    questions
  • Much mental activity and the development of
    elaborate systems with endless distinctions and
    differences
  • Failure to distinguish between what was
    legitimate investigation and what was not
  • Little awareness of significance of covenant
  • Priority of Reason over Revelation

22
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY Benefits
  • Scholasticism is the immediate antecedent of the
    Reformation
  • William Cunningham, HT, 1418
  • Provides the background for Reformation,
    especially late medieval nominalism
  • See H. Oberman, The Harvest of Medieval Theology
  • Scholasticism provided much useful theological
    vocabulary
  • E.g., the term satisfactio, in relation to the
    atonement of Christ

23
Introduction to Systematic Theology
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