1. Miracles: Definitions

  • Created by: Alasdair
  • Created on: 17-06-17 21:08
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  • 1. Miracles: Definitions
    • Hume
      • "a transgression of a law of nature by a particular volition of the Deity, or by...some invisible entity"
      • This makes miracles easy to identify
      • But it restricts God's actions to the laws of nature, and it does not focus on God's interaction with the world
    • Holland
      • "A remarkable and beneficial coincidence hat is interpreted in a religious fashion"
      • The onus is clearly on the interpretation of the individual
      • Most likely there is no hand in God intervening
      • What is seen to be a miracle is open to interpretation
        • This could mean that miracles become meaningless
      • With this definition, God can intervene without breaking the laws of nature
    • Swinburne
      • Is there a God?
      • Miracles must hold a deeper meaning or significance
      • e.g. God making a feathher land in a particular place has no "deep ultimate purpose"; "these events would not naturally be described as miracles"
      • "If he (God) has reason to interact with us, he has reason very occasionally to intervene and suspend those natural laws by which our life is controlled"
    • Ramsey
      • Miracles are disclosure situations
        • A usual complex of incidents with which a new insight into truth is wrapped
      • Not all miracles are disclosure situations, and not all disclosure situations are miracles
    • C. S. Lewis
      • Miracles are a type of revelation
      • This incarnation of Christ is central to Christian belief.
        • All other miracles are related to this event
    • Durkheim
      • Miracle stories are attributed to a 'holy person'.
        • These events bear testimony to that person's status
      • Personal experiences of miracles have a spiritual values, as a 'free gift' from God


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