A Little Book for New Philosophers Paperback

Why and How to Study Philosophy

by Paul Copan;

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A Little Book for New Philosophers

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What's the point of studying philosophy when we have theology? Is philosophy anything more than a preparation for apologetics?

Often called "theology's handmaid," philosophy has sometimes suffered from an inferiority complex in the church. Many Christians see little point in it at all. But as Paul Copan contends, it is possible to affirm theology's preeminence without diminishing the value and contribution of philosophy.

In A Little Book for New Philosophers, Copan offers a concise introduction to the study of philosophy. Aimed at newcomers, this brief overview is both a survey of philosophy's basic aims and categories and an apology for its proper function in the life of the Christian. "By God's grace," Copan writes, "philosophy can enhance our understanding and worship of God . . . and assist us in defending the coherence of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ."

A Little Book for New Philosophers by Paul Copan was published by InterVarsity Press in November 2016. The ISBN for A Little Book for New Philosophers is 9780830851478.

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Review by Alan Mordue

This tiny little book by Paul Copan is one of the best introductions to philosophy for a Christian I have ever read and I've read a lot large and small. He goes through the history of philosophy and shows the enormous debt to theology from the ancient Greeks and his approach reminded me of Plato's famous comment that atheism is a kind of disease/sickness. It is also really useful to have someone who is comfortable defending natural theology in the sense that if something is true it's true whether it's said by scripture or even someone like Voltaire.

There is a healthy respect for Socrates via Plato and huge respect for Aristotle - so he might! But he also says that we need to be wary of some of the assumptions which are deeply theistic but ?not truly biblical, fair enough. He is saying is the God of Plato actually the same God as the God of Abraham - a profound question that people will argue over forever I think.

He challenges Christians who disregard philosophy or mistrust it, saying there is no theology without philosophy and no philosophy without theology. Similarly to Tom Wright he says that Paul is both a great Christian theologian and philosopher. Is Paul directly influenced by the Greeks as much as by rabbinical and scriptural models?

The book explores all the current trends, especially the growing acceptance of theistic based models in philosophy today. Does the atheist have to prove God doesn't exist or is it the faith based person who has to prove he does?

The scholarship in in what is essentially an essay is awe-inspiring and I strongly recommend this book.


Details for A Little Book for New Philosophers

Author / Artist
Book FormatPaperback / softback
PublisherInterVarsity Press (November 2016)
Number of Pages128
Thickness8 mm
Height175 mm
Width107 mm
Product Code4490523
Page last updated 23rd June 2018
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