Creatio ex Nihilo: The Grammar of Agency

Eclectic Orthodoxy

Until we grasp the radical transcendence of the eternal Creator, we cannot think rightly either his providential action in the world or of the peculiar freedom that we, as creatures, enjoy in him. Like the ancient Greeks we conceive of God as a being within the order of the cosmos—a supreme, perfect, noncorporeal being but a being nonetheless. And given our present scientific understanding of the universe, it’s difficult for us to envision how such a being can be providentially involved in world and cosmic history. Maybe he got things started at the Big Bang (or maybe not), but since then the cosmos has been rolling along quite nicely without him, thank you very much. God does not appear in the cosmological equations of the physicists. He is an unnecessary hypothesis. Divine transcendence is thus inevitably interpreted as distance and noninvolvement, a functional deism. If God is present in the…

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