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Defending GodBiblical Responses to the Problem of Evil$
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James L. Crenshaw

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195140026

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195140028.001.0001

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Mystery

Mystery

Appealing to Human Ignorance

Chapter:
(p.165) 10 Mystery
Source:
Defending God
Author(s):

James L. Crenshaw

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195140028.003.0011

Although the Bible frequently depicts God as eminently knowable, it also zealously protects divine secrecy. The deus revelatus is at the same time deus absconditus. Recognition that all knowledge of God is partial derives from this intrinsic nature of deity: the more God discloses the more the divine essence hides. The author of Ecclesiastes exposes a view of an unknown creator, one who doles out favors without rhyme or reason and condemns humans to abysmal ignorance. The apocalypses of Fourth Esdras and Second Baruch reveal the agony generated by a mysterious God whose ways are beyond understanding.

Keywords:   knowable, secrecy, Ecclesiastes, creator, ignorance, apocalypse, mysterious, Esdras, Baruch

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