Gordon Graham

in The Oxford Handbook of Systematic Theology

Published in print September 2007 | ISBN: 9780199245765
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology


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The history of the relationship between theology and philosophy in the Western tradition is one of convergence, divergence, reconvergence, and finally, a more prolonged separation. The origins of philosophy are to be found in the Presocratic thinkers of ancient Greece, but the surviving fragments of their writings do not distinguish questions that we would now classify as philosophical from those now regarded as theological or scientific. Despite this eventual separation, any adequate survey of the issues with which both theology and philosophy continue to deal reveal that there must remain substantial common ground in at least three important areas: metaphysics, moral philosophy, and epistemology. This may explain the re-emergence of a measure of intellectual conversation between the two in the late twentieth century. This article discusses metaphysics, moral philosophy, epistemology, contemporary philosophical theology, and contemporary theology and philosophy.

Keywords: metaphysics; moral philosophy; Socrates; contemporary theology; epistemology; philosophical theology

Article.  7322 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Philosophy of Religion

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