Natural Theology

Cover Natural Theology
Genres: Nonfiction

Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER II. PROOFS FOR THE EXISTENCE OF AN INTELLIGENT FIRST CAUSE OR PERSONAL GOD. Section i.?Method of Proof. 23. The object of the three following chapters is to prove not only that there is a First Cause of all things else that exist, but also that this First Cause has the attributes which are associated with the conception of a First Cause in the minds of mono- theists, especially of Christians. This is most necessary if we are to make our ground sure. In a certain sense materialists and pantheists maintain the existence of a First Cause. What else are the eternal atoms out of whose combinations and movements the materialist believes the cosmos to be composed ? What else is the Absolute of the pantheists, alleged to be eternally evolving itself under manifold aspects and conditions, and thereby creati


ng the world out of its own substance ? In truth, what is denied, particularly in these days, is not so much self-existence, as personal self- existence. We have to prove the existence of a Personal First Cause, that is to say, of an intelligent self-existing Being who is distinct from the cosmos of which He is the ultimate cause. 24. The proof of this position is three-fold. We have the argument of the First Cause, the argument from Design, and the so-called Moral argument. The argument of the First Cause draws from the simple fact that some things exist the conclusion that there must be a First Cause, and then from the fact that intelligent beings, namely, men, exist, the further conclusion that this First Cause must be intelligent. It can thence proceed to the ultimate conclusion that such a First Cause must be One and Infinite in all respects. The argument from Design starts with the order observable in the world, and infers the existence of a supra-mundane int...

Natural Theology
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