By William J. Abraham
In his day, John Wesley provided very important insights on the right way to receive wisdom of God that bears fruit in our personal instances. As most advantageous Wesleyan student William Abraham indicates, Wesley's most famed religious adventure is rife with philosophical value and implications. all through, Abraham brings Wesley's paintings into fruitful dialog with essentially the most vital paintings in modern epistemology. Lyrically and succinctly he explores the simultaneous epistemological quest and religious pilgrimage that have been crucial to Wesley and the Evangelical Revival of the eighteenth century. In so doing, he presents a discovered and eye-opening meditation upon the connection among cause and religion.
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Extra resources for Aldersgate and Athens: John Wesley and the Foundations of Christian Belief
There is the evidence from the fulfillment of divine promises, the evidence from personal experience of God, and the evidence from the power of God. In this chapter I want to explore the second of these moves, that is, the appeal to personal experience of God. In this case Wesley provides much more than an implicit argument that needs to be made explicit; he actually seeks to unpack the underlying argument; and he does so on numerous occasions with enthusiasm. As we proceed, we shall see that in terms of the contemporary discussion there are in fact at least three ways of fleshing out his proposals.
Jeremiah 29:13-14; cf. ”26 And above all, both think that filial knowledge of God is of the highest authority in the epistemology of theology. The proof of God is, finally, in morally serious testing. Seek aright, then, and you will find incomparable knowledge 38 Aldersgate and Athens and new life as well. What’s more, the joyous firstfruits of the eventual redemption (where God will wipe away every tear and death and suffering shall be no more) are already apparent in our sadly broken world—if only we have eyes to see and ears to hear.
The phenomenon of healing is best explained by seeing it as caused by the Holy Spirit. Middleton challenged this initially by positing a natural explanation, that is, by attributing the healing to the natural efficacy of the oil itself. Wesley was unconvinced. ”11 Middleton then tried another explanation: the whole matter 48 Aldersgate and Athens was a cheat from the beginning to end. Wesley found the arguments deployed in defense of this option equally unconvincing. Whatever else we may say, the witnesses in the first three centuries were not cheats; there were too many of good standing to dismiss in this cavalier fashion.
Aldersgate and Athens: John Wesley and the Foundations of Christian Belief by William J. Abraham