Sigler Price: $9.00
Paper - 184 pp
Trinity Press International
In terms of Christian history, the seventeenth century in Europe is
often seen as one of religious wars and of the development of the
great systems of post-Reformation Protestant orthodoxy.
However, as Professor Scholder shows in this brilliant book, it is
even more significant that it was the period of the birth of modern
critical theology: the time when the traditional Christian view of
the world began to fall apart under the impact of science and
How that happened is the story told in this book.
The key element in Christian claims to truth was, of course, the
Bible, and Professor Scholder begins by showing how a challenge to
that claim was already being mounted in the previous century by the
Socinians, with their discussion of the relationship between reason,
scripture and dogma. Then came controversies over specific
issues, which are illustrated in detail. The findings of
Copernicus and Galileo questioned the credibility of the biblical
view of the place of the earth within the universe on the basis of
astronomy; in the wake of the voyages of discovery, other equally important
if lesser known figures questioned the biblical view of history on
the basis of new geographical evidence which had come to light.
Now there seemed to be not one truth, but two: the truths of the
Bible and the truth ascertained by modern investigations - and there
were still the challenges of Descartes and Spinoza to come.
The consequences of the seventeenth-century intellectual
revolution are still with us, and there is no better guide to an
understanding than this most-gifted historian of our age.