All theology is natural theology: The hermeneutic necessity of natural theology?

Ernst M. Conradie

Abstract


This article first offers a brief overview of the history of what is understood under
“natural theology”. The contrast between the Barthian critique against natural
theology and the dangers of repudiating natural theology as stressed within the
context of contemporary discourse on science and theology is highlighted. In
response, the author offers a constructive proposal in which the hermeneutic
necessity of natural theology is affirmed. This follows from a notion of that which
is “natural” which includes human constructs (also ideas). In this sense all theology
is by definition natural theology. However, the Barthian critique against natural
theology may still be appropriate as a selection of those signs that can express the
inexpressible with relative adequacy.

Keywords


Hermeneutics;Natural theology;Nature;Theology of nature;Hermeneutiek;Natuur;Natuurlike teologie;Teologie van die natuur

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5952/52-1-6

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ISSN 2226-2385 (online); ISSN 0028-2006 (print)

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