Robert Jenson on philosophy

Robert Jenson on philosophy

“We usually refer to the work of Greece’s theologians with their own name for it, ‘philosophy.’ We have thereupon been led to think this must be a different kind of intellectual activity than theology, to which theology perhaps may appeal for foundational purposes or against which theology must perhaps defend itself. But this is a historical illusion; Greek philosophy was simply the theology of the historically particular Olympian-Parmenidean religion, later shared with the wider Mediterranean cultic world. […]

“The secular mood by which some forms of ‘philosophy’ contrast with Christian theology and that tempts us to take them for a different kind of thinking is simply a character of Olympian religion itself, which pursued a divinity purged of mystery. Insofar as Western philosophy is not now reduced to the pure study of logic, it is still in fact theology, Christian or Olympian-Parmenidean. Theologians must indeed converse with the philosophers, but only because and insofar as both are engaged in the same sort of enterprise.”

from Systematic Theology: The Triune God, Vol. 1, (OUP, 1997), 9-10.

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