TeacherDr. T. Miller
SemesterFallDuration8 Weeks
FrequencyEvery three years
Credits5 ECTSWorkload125-150 Hours
Module formatIntensive
ApplicabilityThis Module is essential to theological courses which engage in reasoning about God, his existence, and his sovereignty. The philosophical reflection on faith and reason, theodicy, and related topics will be of benefit in all other theological courses.
Course structureSee module and courses
Contact time35-45 HoursSelf-Study105-125 Hours
Participation requirementSee access to the program
Phase 15020%
Readings & Journal
Phase 24030%
Participation & Discussions
Phase 36050%
Research Paper
Content of the ModuleThis course undertakes a critical analysis and evaluation of reasoning about God. Topics covered include the concept of God, arguments for and against God’s existence, the relation between faith and reason, the problem of evil, religious pluralism, and other related topics.
This course introduces a contemporary philosophical reflection on the concept of God, arguments for and against God’s existence, the problem of evil, the relation between faith and reason, and related topics in the philosophy of religion. 
Assigned readings and class discussions will focus on selected basic questions, such as: 
a) What is religion 
b) What is classical theism and is it coherent? 
c) What rational arguments or grounds are there for theism and for atheism/agnosticism? 
d) What is the nature of faith? Is it rational? Does it have to be? 
e) Could a perfectly good God permit evil or the sort of evil that occurs? 
f) If God exists, what difference might this make to human existence and to one’s own life? 
g) What are some of the major obstacles to religious faith in our postmodern world?
Learning Objectives

A. General Learning Objectives
This course seeks to:

  1. Introduce students to philosophical reflection on classical theism.
  2. Provide a detailed analysis of the main arguments for and against God’s existence.
  3. Relate philosophical reflection on the nature of God to other central philosophical issues such as the nature of freedom, the problem of evil, and the origin of morality.
  4. Relate philosophical reflection on arguments for and against God’s existence to other important philosophical topics such as the relation of faith and reason, the nature and availability of knowledge, and the justification of religious belief.
  5. Introduce students to a wide range of philosophers of religion and their views on such topics as miracles, life after death, the problem of evil, and religious pluralism.
  6. Introduce students to social and scientific perspectives on religion.

B. Specific Behavioral Objectives
As a result of the study and activities of this course, the student should be able to:

  1. Thoughtfully and carefully discuss the concept of God and related philosophical debates about the nature of freedom, the problem of evil, and the origin and objectivity of morality
  2. Explain and assess the main arguments for and against God’s existence in the history of western thought
  3. Demonstrate a basic grasp of issues related to the problem of faith’s relation to reason and the justification of religious belief
  4. Explain and assess the positions of leading philosophers of religion
  5. Explain and critically analyze the coherence of classical theism
  6. Show the ability to discuss social and scientific perspectives on religion
Outline1. What is Philosophy of Religion?
2. The Relation between Faith and Reason
3. The Idea of God and God’s Existence
4. Modern/Postmodern World Views and Theistic Issues
5. The Problem of Evil
6. Life After Death
7. Miracles
8. Science and Religion
9. Religious Pluralism
ExaminationSee Evaluation
Core Literature

Rowe, William L. Philosophy of Religion: An Introduction. 4th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Co., 2007.
Pojman, Louis P. and Rea, Michael. Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology. 5th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Co., 2008.

Reading List:
Ervin, Howard M. “Hermeneutics: A Pentecostal Option,” Pneuma: Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies 3:2 [fall 1981]: 11-25.
Evans, C. Stephan. Philosophy of Religion: Thinking about Faith. Downers Grove, Ill: InterVarsity Press, 1985
Land, Steven J. Pentecostal Spirituality: A Passion for the Kingdom. Sheffield, England: Sheffield Academic Press, 1993.
Penner, Myron B., ed. Christianity and the Postmodern Turn. Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2005.
Smith, James K.A. Thinking in Tongues. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010.
________. Desiring the Kingdom. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2009.
Yong, Amos. Spirit-Word-Community. Aldershot: Ashgate Pub., 2002.

Other information