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Study questions

  • 1. Who was more reasonable in his attitude to Jesus and his miracles, Locke or Hume? Who was more rational?
  • 2. Do the miracles of Jesus make it reasonable to believe that the Gospels are divine revelation? Or would we have to believe the Gospels are true in advance of accepting their accounts of miracles?
  • 3. Can reason alone give an account of God as three Persons in one Being?
  • 4. Was it a good idea for eighteenth-century Christians to try to disprove Socinianism on rational grounds? If not, what should they have done instead?
  • 5. How did the conception of faith change in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries?
  • 6. Do the miracles in the Gospels make it more plausible or less plausible that they rest on eyewitness testimony?

Further reading

Dixon, Philip, ‘Nice and Hot Disputes’: The Doctrine of the Trinity in the Seventeenth Century (London: T&T Clark), 2003.

Hume, David, ‘Of Miracles’, Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, 3rd ed., ed. L. A. Selby-Bigge; rev. P. H. Nidditch (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975), pp. 109-131.

Redwood, John, Reason, Ridicule and Religion: The Age of Enlightenment in England 1660-1750 (London: Thames & Hudson, 1976).

Vickers, Jason E., Invocation and Assent: The Making and Remaking of Trinitarian Theology (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 2008).

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