New PDF release: "Creatio ex nihilo" and the Theology of St. Augustine: The

By N. Joseph Torchia

This research proceeds from an research of the importance of the Christian doctrine of creatio ex nihilo in a number of the key parts of St. Augustine's prolonged anti-Manichaean polemic. To an outstanding volume, his devastating critique of the Manichaeans' international view, their notion of evil, and their so much basic theological presuppositions relied seriously upon the confirmation that God finally created every little thing that exists from not anything. In broader phrases, the learn demonstrates how the doctrine of creatio ex nihilo supplied Augustine with an efficient technique of defining the nature of created being as finite and mutable, and drawing a very important ontological contrast among the Divine Nature and that which God creates. Such teachings have been operative in a few of the key topics of Augustine's theology.

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Additional resources for "Creatio ex nihilo" and the Theology of St. Augustine: The Anti-Manichaean Polemic and Beyond

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In this respect, he is representative of a general movement toward the emancipation of Christian creation accounts from the limitations of the ideas and imagery of the Timaeus. In general, all of the second century Greek Apologists we have considered directed their arguments against mainstream pagan thinkers. But implicit in their critique of classical philosophical theories of cosmological origins was a refutation of teachings rooted in Gnosticism. "Gnosticism" refers to a wide range of philosophico-religious teachings which emerged in late antiquity.

79 Basil's second argument is a variation of the first: if God acted upon an inferior substrate, then the product would be unequal to the power and dignity of its Creator. In that case, God must create a defective product, by virtue of the baseness of the material upon which He would be constrained to act. 80 By virtue of his affirmation that God creates all things, Basil denies that God and the world are coeternal, and rejects any attempt to assign the same nature to God and to material reality.

In the patristic tradition, we find the most explicit condemnation of Gnosticism in the writings of Ireneaus and Tertullian. 3. lrenaeus and Tertullian In actuality, Irenaeus and Tertullian provide little in the way of original contributions to the development of the doctrine of creatio ex nihilo. 55 Their impact upon the Christian tradition proceeds more from their skills as polemicists rather than their gifts as speculative thinkers in their own right. But since their deliberations on creation emerge in connection with refutations of a major controversy in the history of early Christianity, they merit at least passing consideration in this survey.

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