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Eleonore Stump

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198813866

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198813866.001.0001

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Methodology, Problems, and Desiderata

Methodology, Problems, and Desiderata

(p.3) 1 Methodology, Problems, and Desiderata

Eleonore Stump

Oxford University Press

The doctrine that Christ has saved human beings from their sins, with all that that salvation entails, is the distinctive doctrine of Christianity. This book is an examination of that doctrine. The first chapter begins with a consideration of the nature of the project of this book. It is an exercise in philosophical theology, whose nature is briefly summarized. The data of Christian theology that this exercise in philosophical theology presupposes are then set out and discussed. Next, the chapter outlines the elements of the problem that the atonement is meant to solve, namely, the problems of guilt and shame and of the human liability to moral wrongdoing. Then the chapter sketches the main kinds of interpretation of the doctrine of the atonement that can be found in the Christian tradition and briefly summarizes their strengths and weaknesses. The chapter finishes with a short presentation of the desiderata for any acceptable interpretation of the doctrine of the atonement.

Keywords:   philosophical theology, atonement, incarnation, Chalcedonian formula, divine attributes, guilt, shame, sin, Anselm, Aquinas

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