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Theology and Modern Science

Among the multitude of issues addressed by authors in the burgeoning field of science and theology the most fundamental is that of divine action in the world. How might believers best understand God as truly acting in the realms studied by the natural sciences? Several specific questions arise in this context: What implications do contemporary theories about the origins of the universe have for the doctrine of God as "Creator of heaven and earth"? When cosmologists and biologists talk about the evolution not only of galaxies and solar systems but also of various forms of life on earth, what does this say about the doctrine of divine providence? If human beings evolved from earlier organisms, as the vast majority of scientists believe, what changes might this portend for the way we talk about the "human soul" and the way we either affirm or deny a spiritual element in other living beings? If scientists are correct in predicting the eventual demise of the solar system, how might these predictions affect the way we understand the traditional Judeo-Christian hope for "a new heaven and a new earth"? These are some of the questions that this book sets out to answer. Though many of the issues are rooted in Christian theology, the book addresses them in a broadly ecumenical way that aims to be both informative and thought provoking for anyone interested in the lively contemporary debate between theology and the natural sciences.
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Table of Contents

1. Historical Background 2. Cosmology and the Doctrine of Creation 3. Evolution and the Doctrine of Divine Providence 4. Evolution and the Doctrine of the Human Soul 5. Cosmology and the Doctrine of Eschatology 6. The Casual Continuum of Space-Time Events and Divine Action 7. Essaying Coherence

About the Author

James A. Wiseman, O.S.B., is an associate professor of theology at The Catholic University of America and has twice been a visiting professor in the department of religious studies at Yale University. He has edited or co-edited four previous books, including The Gethsemani Encounter. Father Wiseman is a member of the monastic community of St. Anselm's Abbey in Washington, D.C.


" a skillfully crafted interpretation of the contemporary science-theology dialogue " -Trinity Seminary Review "In Theology and Modern Science James Wiseman provides an informed and skillfully crafted theological interpretation of natural science. He does this in a modest and pedagogically appealing manner that will make his work accessible to students as well as scholars. This compact, clearly written and well-organized volume is the fruit of careful scholarly reflection and passionate involvement in the major issues in natural science and theology today." John F. Haught, author of God After Darwin "This is an excellent introduction to the field of science and theology. James Wiseman tackles some of the really tough issues with intelligence and honesty. He writes in a clear and accessible way. On each issue he presents a range of scholarly opinions before offering his own. This is a really useful text for courses in colleges, seminaries, and universities as well as for the general reader." Denis Edwards, author of The God of Evolution "Wiseman takes us on an urbane tour of the now lively and even crowded territory known as 'science and religion.'...Particularly useful is his summary and respectful judgment of the opinions of others, including those with whom he disagrees." Paul Giurlanda, Interpretation, April 2003 [excellent] "!!!!! Must Read" Public News Service, June 24, 2002 [excellent] "!!!!! Must Read"--Public News Service, June 24, 2002

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