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Inter-Varsity Press The Openness of God

That Greek philosophy at least partially influenced Christianity is generally accepted, since it formed the foundation of the culture the first Christians lived in. Many of the early church fathers even appropriated Greek philosophy in their attempts to evangelize the pagan world they found themselves in. But was the Greek influence good or bad? The question is not new; Tertullian asked, in the second century AD, "What indeed has Athens to do with Jerusalem? What has the Academy to do with the Church?"

This book is an attempt to show that the Greek influence was, as Tertullian felt, dangerous. Why dangerous? Because, according to the authors, the Greek concepts of what God was like and how he interacted with humans were fatally flawed, and have resulted in a Christian theology which has pagan notions of perfection at its core. These concepts include immutability, impassibility, and omniscience (particularly in terms of foreknowledge of all future events).

The authors begin with the contention that God has granted humans a significant degree of freedom, and that He chooses to enter into a genuine relationship with them. They defend this position biblically, historically, theologically and philosophically, offering a well-balanced, comprehensive look at several familiar issues from a different, and they claim, more biblical viewpoint.

The unique interplay of the five authors in this book makes it a fascinating read. Richard Rice makes a compelling biblical case for open theism, while John Sanders takes a look at just how Greek our Christian theology is, and why contemporary theologians are generally unwilling to accept the validity of open theism. Clark Pinnock offers what can be termed a systematic theology of God's openness and William Hasker offers a cogent philosophical defense of open theism. David Basinger then offers some practical implications of open theism, and compares them to the implications of both traditional classical theism and process theology.

You may not agree with the authors of this volume, but the discussion itself about these major issues is vitally important. Learn why each of these five authors came to believe in open theism, and what it means in their lives.
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