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Peter Kreeft: God as Author

I seem to be getting a lot of good stuff sent to me recently. Another friend sent me an interview (excerpt below) with Catholic philosopher Peter Kreeft. When I began my book on divine determinism nearly thirty years ago, no one seemed to be thinking of God as the author of reality and of created reality as a narrative that God is creating. It seems that a growing number of people are recognizing that this is the best way to understand the biblical perspective. And, indeed, as I argued in my recent seminar on the problem of evil at Gutenberg’s 2012 Summer Institute and in a series of talks at Reformation Fellowship, it provides the only really compelling answer to the problem of evil. Interestingly, Kreeft answers the relevant questions in the interview below exactly as I would.

I have not included the full interview even though Kreeft has some very interesting things to say. Here’s the interview’s teaser: “Our culture, says surfer/philosopher Peter Kreeft, has created women with terribly low expectations and new Victorians who will make moral judgments about everything except sex.” The interview by Marvin Olasky (July 17, 2010), can be found on the World Magazine website.

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Peter Kreeft still has more years (73) than published books (59), but the prolific Catholic professor is closing the gap. He teaches philosophy at both Boston College and The King’s College, New York City, and when he has spare time plays chess and goes surfing. The next book out of the chute is his first novel, An Ocean Full of Angels.

How is writing a novel different from writing nonfiction? Do you feel a little bit like God? It’s a great analogy: the novel that God writes and the novel that we write. It shows how there can be predestination and free will at the same time. And it also shows how the Incarnation is not illogical, because it shows how a novelist can put himself in his own novel as one of his own characters—and then he has two natures.

So in our hobbies of novel writing, we are studying theology. Well, the Bible is more like a novel than like theology, actually. This is the one thing that postmodernism has shown us, that Enlightenment rationalism doesn’t fit the fundamentally religious foundation of narrative.

Do you think you were predestined to become a philosopher? Yes, of course. Predestination is in the Bible. A good author gives his characters freedom, so we’re free precisely because we were predestined to be free. There’s no contradiction between predestination and free will.

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