Apologetics: February 2005 Archives

This is my second post in dialogue with Back of the Envelope's two posts on slavery and Christianity. The first argued that slavery is a matter of degree from absolute autonomy to being under someone's complete control. No one is ever at either extreme, though some have been closer to the extreme on the higher-slavery end of the spectrum. We're all slaves to one degree or another, to our employers and our government if to no one else. This post is now going to consider what the Bible says about slavery. [update: I've continued in this series enough to collect the links to each post all in one post]

Universalism and I Peter

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In a comment on my treatment of universalism and Romans 10, Dave said the following:

Also, what about the spirits that Christ preached to who were disobedient in the time of Noah? They were to be judged according to the flesh, but live according to the spirit.(I Peter 3:18-20a and 4:6).

I don't think either I Peter passage teaches universalism. As I started to explain why in a comment, I decided I might as well make it a post, so here it is.

This is part IV in a series on meta-ethics begun here. See that post for more details. So far I've looked at a simplistic version of subjectivism, one that thinks ethical statements are about our own attitudes but are still the sort of statement that can be true or false. That view is hard to square with how we use moral language. A more sophisticated subjectivist view simply denies that our moral statements are the sort of thing that can be true or false. They don't have any cognitive content. The view is thus called non-cognitivism.

The most basic version of non-cognitivism is emotivism. As with any form of non-cognitivism, it says moral statements aren't really statements at all. There aren't really moral truths, but moral statements aren't false either. They're not the sort of thing that can be true or false in the same way that it isn't true or false that chocolate ice cream is better than black raspberry. Some people prefer one or the other and thus have different attitudes, but there's no truth or falsity of either one.

This is my seventh post for Joe Carter's collaborative project Jesus the Logician (which would better be described as Jesus' Reasoning).

During the week Jesus spent in Jerusalem before his crucifixion, he spent much of his time in the temple disputing with various groups of religious leaders. Much of what we have recorded in the gospels from those discussions is with the Pharisees and scribes. We have only one recorded discussion with the Sadducees, though it appears in all three of the synoptic gospels (Mark 12:18-27, Matthew 22:23-34, and Luke 20:27-40).

Jesus the Logician Deadline

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Today is the tentative deadline Joe Carter gave for submissions for his collaborative project Jesus the Logician, which would better be described as (Jesus' Reasoning). I have no idea if Joe intends to stick with this as a deadline, but it might be a good idea to finish up any submissions you want to do if you still want to contribute to this (or if you want to contribute any more posts; I have at least one more I'm working on right now on Jesus' interactions with the Sadducees as recorded in Mark 12:18-27, Matthew 22:23-33, and Luke 20:27-40, and I hope to do yet another beyond that if I have time). The list of current entries so far is here.

Update: Joe's tentativeness of the deadline apparently was completely serious. He isn't closing it off just yet. He wants some more entries first, so let's get cracking. Now I have to figure out what I'm going to do for my eighth.



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