History of Philosophy and Christian Thought

This course is a basic introduction to the history of philosophy and Christian thought.

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About this Class

These lectures were given at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida during the fall semester of 2001.


Lecture 21

Hedonism emphasized pleasure as the greatest good. "Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we might be dead."

Lecture 22

Philo's philosophy was based on a synthesis of Stoicism and Platonism.

Lecture 23

Implicit "Logos" Christianity is an underlying theme in the book of Hebrews.

Lecture 24

Plotinus lived in the third century AD and is considered the founder of Neoplatonism.

Lecture 25

Augustine is a Latin church father, is considered by many to be one of the most important figures in the development of Western Christianity.

Lecture 26

Augustine wrote Confessions as an autobiographical work to record his experience as a sinful youth and his experience becoming a follower of Christ.

Lecture 27

Augustine wrote to refute some heresies of the day by focusing on the concepts of faith and reason.

Lecture 28

Augustine writes about the problem of evil and describes evil as the absence of good.

Lecture 29

Augustine writes to refute Pelagianism by focusing on the biblical teaching about sin.

Lecture 30

Augustine writes to refute Donatism.

Lecture 31

The fundamental idea of skepticism is that no one can know anything. Augustine this statement contradicts itself because the skeptic is claiming that you can know that you can't know anything.

Lecture 32

When Augustine wrote "The City of God," he had a linear view of history.

Lecture 33

In Augustine's theory of knowledge, he says that eternal reason and human reason are two different levels of reason.

Lecture 34

Augustine was personally convinced of the importance of divine illumination.

Lecture 35

The intellectual background of Thomas Aquinas was influenced by the discovery of ancient manuscripts, the rise of universities, the rise of religious brotherhoods and the rise of Muslim philosophy.

Lecture 36

Aquinas describes faith as whatever a human can know through special revelation, and reason as whatever a human can know outside of special revelation.

Lecture 37

Aquinas attempts to prove God's existence.

Lecture 38

Aquinas describes four kinds of law as eternal, divine, natural and positive.

Lecture 39

The rationalists and empiricists set the stage for Kant and other philosophers of the modern era.

Lecture 40

Kant argued that moral requirements are based on a standard of rationality he dubbed the “Categorical Imperative."


Frequently Asked Questions

Who are the programs intended for?

The Foundations program is intended for everyone, regardless of biblical knowledge. The Academy program is intended for those who would like more advanced studies. And the Institute program is intended for those who want to study seminary-level classes.

Do I need to take the classes in a specific order?

In the Foundations and Academy programs, we recommend taking the classes in the order presented, as each subsequent class will build on material from previous classes. In the Institute program, the first 11 classes are foundational. Beginning with Psalms, the classes are on specific books of the Bible or various topics.

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At this time, we offer certificates only for the classes on the Certificates page. While we do not offer transfer credit for completing a certificate program, you will be better equipped to study the Bible and apply its teachings to your life.

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