Religion and Theology Essay custom essay

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Essays should be 4-6 paragraphs long, answering the question in an introductory paragraph and developing that answer through subsequent paragraphs and a conclusion.
– While there will be no need to memorize specific quotations from the texts, grounding your essay with references to McGrath and to the Bible readings is essential to a successful answer.
– Note that essays are a different kind of writing than journal entries; while in journal entries I have been asking more questions about your feelings and emotional reactions to the text, here you should answer the question, and support that answer with arguments.

1. Define and distinguish the terms ‘religion,’ ‘theology,’ and ‘religious studies’. Discuss how one would study the Christian bible from a theological perspective, and how one would study it from a religious studies perspective. Which approach do you think is stronger?

2. Discuss the idea of God in the story of Abraham as told in Genesis. What are some of the major characteristics of the Jewish understanding of God according to this text? What are some specific details of the story that complicate these major characteristics?

3. Compare and contrast the approaches of Thomas Aquinas and Blaise Pascal in answering the question of God?s existence. Explain one of Thomas Aquinas’s major ways of demonstrating God’s existence logically; what are Pascal?s critiques of this approach? Despite these differences, where are they in agreement?

4. What is faith? Draw upon the ideas of Thomas Aquinas and Martin Luther in outlining two major ways of understanding the idea of ‘faith’ as ‘belief that’ and ‘belief in’. Are these approaches complementary or contradictory? Why?

5. Why is it difficult to talk about God? How does the use of analogies help theologians in talking about God? Discuss the analogies of God as ‘shepherd’ and as ‘father’ in your answer.

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