The Grandeur of Reason

Dave Belcher has put together a panel for the above-named conference in Rome, featuring Jodi L. A. Belcher, Peter M. Candler, Jr., Joshua B. Davis, Craig Keen, and John Milbank, with Dave as moderator. His summary of the panel is as follows:

I propose a panel discussion that will explore themes of Scripture and Reason, specifically as these appear in Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians. The discussion is indebted to and will attempt to explore further the following literature: Stanislas Breton’s essay, The Word and the Cross, but also Michel de Certeau’s The Mystic Fable, and various writings of St. John of the Cross on foolishness. Paul in 1 Corinthians 1-3 offers a potent message on the intersection of the wisdom of this world and the wisdom of God — the latter of which wisdom, he says, God chose to reveal through the foolishness of the cross to shame the wisdom of the rulers of this age; this is the very power of the proclamation of the Word. Throughout, Paul is disparaging the divisions spurring up within the church (which are grounded in the wisdom of the world). All of those divisions are broken by the foolishness of the cross, and thus the unity of the body has its sole foundation in Christ and him crucified. Paul lays this foundation, plants this seed, even while Apollos waters the seed. A panel discussion on Paul’s reflections is proposed, in order to explore the following themes: the relation between the wisdom of this world and the wisdom of God; the wisdom of God as the folly of the cross; the relation between Paul and Apollos on wisdom (or reason); the wisdom of this world as the stronghold of the “powers” of the world — and concomitantly how the foolishness of the cross breaks that wisdom and those powers; and faith and reason in Paul.

I think this should be a great panel, and especially important amid the general atmosphere of “rehellenizing Christianity,” etc. There is one small problem, however: putting together the money to get him, Jodi, and Josh to Rome. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation (seriously — the Church of the Nazarene is helping to finance it, and you can donate through them), instructions can be found at Dave’s post.

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6 Responses to “The Grandeur of Reason”

  1. Dave Belcher Says:

    Thanks, Adam.

  2. Alex Says:

    This sounds great. We should almost certainly put together a “An und für sich Timetable” detailing the times of panels and papers of people associated with this site. I’m in an office with the timetable organiser, so I’ll knock one together and send to you Adam if you like.

    I’m giving a paper, as is Anthony, Mike and most of the Nottingham crew are also.

  3. Adam Says:

    Alex, That might be a good idea for the AAR, but for this conference, it seems unnecessary — wouldn’t everyone who’s interested basically be among the presenters?

  4. Adam Says:

    Honestly, I don’t think the word “grandeur” is used enough.


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