Beginning with an exploration of how the Reformers conceived the relationship between natural and moral philosophy, that is, physics and ethics, the author then investigates the relationship between natural law and the order of nature in the thought of Philip Melanchthon.
These articles set the scene for a discussion of the role of theological arguments, and in particular understandings of Gods Providence, in the interpretation of astronomical phenomena in the late sixteenth century. A similar interaction between theological, astronomical and political arguments shaped Michael Maestlins objections to the Gregorian calendar reform. Johannes Keplers arguments for the authority of his astronomical theories show a tacit awareness that that novelty was to be equated with heresy also draw on theological motifs. The strong parallel between his use of the theory of accommodation and his understanding of hypothesis suggest that questions of theology and questions of proof were closely related in his mind.
A final chapter considers critically Sachiko Kusukawas thesis that Melanchthon established a Lutheran natural philosophy.
1. Natural order or order of nature? Natural and Moral Philosophy in the Thought of the Reformers.
2. Lex naturae and ordo naturae in the thought of Philip Melanchthon.
3. This comet or new star: theology and the interpretation of the nova of 1572.
4. Special providence and sixteenth-century astronomical observation: some preliminary reflections.
5. Time human or time divine: Theological aspects in opposing the Gregorian Calendar Reform.
6. From sola scriptura to astronomia nova: novelty, authority, and the reform of astronomy in the work of Johannes Kepler.
7. On the problem of defining Lutheran Natural Philosophy
Science and Theology in the Reformation by Charlotte Methuen was published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC in June 2008 and is our 46282nd best seller. The ISBN for Science and Theology in the Reformation is 9780567032713.