Nature of God

Mind Map by DanielleJ97, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by DanielleJ97 over 5 years ago


A Level RE (Nature of God) Mind Map on Nature of God, created by DanielleJ97 on 10/23/2014.

Resource summary

Nature of God
1 Plato
1.1 Analogy of the cave
1.1.1 Prisoners incapacitated at the bottom of a cave, all they see is shadows cast by things behind them, one prisoner is then forced to leave and climb out of the cave, once out he saw the light which was painful and dazzling, he wants to return and tell the others but is dragged out, over time he grows used to the light and is able to look at the sun itself. This represents a theologian or a philosopher who wants to become more aware of the world and teach his findings.
1.2 Wondered how we knew beauty and perfection
1.2.1 Form of the good In Christianity the form of the good becomes God as it is the source of all things, immutable, eternal, perfect, and invisible. It gives everything else value and purpose It is the form of all other forms Beauty Justice Chairs Tables
1.3 Aristotle
1.3.1 Took Plato's ideas of the world of forms to develop the ide of the four causes. Material What something is made from Efficient The activity that makes something happen Formal The form or shape something takes Final Reason or purpose for something
1.3.2 World is in a continual state, everything changes or moves Thought there must be a final cause/ explanation for all of this movement and it itself must be unmoved, uncaused and unaffected whilst changing other things Unmoved mover, uncaused cause. Exists necessarily Is perfectly good and eternal
2 God as a Creator
2.1 Ex Nihilo
2.1.1 God created everything out of nothing "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" Genesis 1:1
2.1.2 God didn't work on pre-existing matter and is not an agent among other agents He is the absolute origin of all that exists - all matter, energy and organisation God as the origin of everything is used to explain the notion of God's absolute mastery over all existence Because He created everything, He has authority over it all.
2.2 Ex Mareria
2.2.1 Less common in Christianity, but it has its roots in the philosophy of Aristotle The universe had always existed independently from God, but in the creation God imposed order and form upon it Bible has some references that suggests to some philosophers that God worked on pre existent matter "Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?" Job 38:5
2.3 Ex Deo
2.3.1 Out of the very substance of God God created the world from himself rather than from nothing or pre-existing matter "Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made" John 1:1-5
2.3.2 God and our material reality are not wholly different God quite literally shares in our existence through our experiences of it As we grow and develop, so does God
3 Eternal
3.1 Timeless
3.1.1 Aquinas Cosmological argument God is the creator of the universe and all life He exists always
3.1.2 Boethius His life is not only endless but it is not like physical life as it doesn't involve change All of time is present to God at the same time/simultaneously/all in one glance He is simple and doesn't learn new things so time mustn't pass for Him
3.1.3 God is outside of time
3.1.4 Life isn't a series of events
3.1.5 He possesses the whole of his life without end Since time consists of parts and the notion of time involves beginnings and ends he must exist outside of time
3.2 Everlasting
3.2.1 God has no begining and no end but time does pass for God
3.2.2 Swinburne Refuses to accept God as timeless The idea of events occuring at the simultaneously to God cannot be made sense of Belief of an everlasting God fits more satisfactorily with God as revealed in the Bible Reactive and responsive God
3.2.3 Wolterstorff The only way to understand some of God's actions as indicated in the Bible is to underdstand them as free actions in response to human behaviour The 10 Plagues Suggests that time passes for God as it does for us If God exists timelessly then we cannot have a relationship with him which goes against religious beliefs
4 Omni Characteristics
4.1 Omnibenevolent
4.1.1 God is perfect Essentially perfect Impossible for him to do or will evil Goodness comes from God Without God moral standards don't exist
4.1.2 God desires perfection God is still capable of doing evil Makes his failure to do evil more praise worthy Moral choice Morality doesn't come from God but from an external source that God also abides by Not widely accepted by Christians as it would then mean he wasn't perfect because he would be lacking something
4.2 Omniscient
4.2.1 Limited Gods knowledge is limited to what is logically possible to know Fits with everlasting God chooses to limit himself to let us remain free.
4.2.2 Unlimited God has unlimited knowledge; past, present and future Fits with timeless
4.3 Omnipotent
4.3.1 God can do anything including the logically impossible Descartes God can change the fundamental laws of Physics It is logically impossible for God to perform miracles However, imagine God as a game designer, the designer can change the rules of the game because the rules don't apply to him. This is the same for God and the universe
4.3.2 God can do what is logically possible for a perfect God to do Aquinas Gods power is infinate as he is not limited Relies on the idea that God is eternal and therefore not bound by the limitation of physical It is a contradiction to say that God is limited because God is perfect
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