Is there anything wrong with religious exclusivism? Dr. Alvin Plantinga, considered by many to be the world’s leading philosopher of religion, doesn’t necessarily think so.
|Dr. Alvin Plantinga, considered by many to be the world’s leading philosopher of religion, speaks at PBA during the President's Distinguished Scholar Lecture.|
Speaking at Palm Beach Atlantic University during the morning chapel hour on Oct. 17, Dr. Plantinga, formerly the John A. O'Brien Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame, explained his beliefs in a message titled, "Pluralism: A Defense of Religious Exclusivism."
Dr. Plantinga also spoke with students later in the day on "The Need for Christian Scholarship," and at 7:30 p.m. he delivered this year’s President's Distinguished Scholar Lecture on "Religion and Science: Where the Conflict Really Lies." About 250 people attended the lecture, which was open to the public.
During the talk, Dr. Plantinga made the case that the conflict is not between religion and science but between naturalism and science. This lecture previewed his newest book, Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion, and Naturalism, scheduled to be released in November. He took questions from the audience afterward.
Senior philosophy major Luke Barry was among those in attendance for the evening lecture. Though the speaker spent most of his time acquainting his listeners with the subject matter, Barry said, "Dr. Plantinga spoke cogently on a subject with which all Christians should be concerned and about which most Christians are generally ignorant."
Dr. Plantinga is the author of a number of books, including God and Other Minds (1967), The Nature of Necessity (1974), and Warranted Christian Belief (2000). He has delivered the prestigious Gifford Lectures three times and was described by Time magazine in 1980 as "America's leading orthodox Protestant philosopher of God."
On Oct. 18, Dr. Plantinga again spoke to students in chapel on "Divine Action in the World," during which he addressed the topics of God, science and miracles.
"The influence Alvin Plantinga has had over the last 40 years and the respect his work commands in the academy should remind us all that Christians can use their minds to the glory of God," said PBA Professor and Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics Dr. Paul Copan.
"Ideas have consequences. C.S. Lewis said that good philosophy must exist, if for no other reason, that bad philosophy must be answered. Alvin Plantinga ably illustrates how the good news of the gospel is not just spiritually satisfying, but intellectually as well."