Robert Jenson's revisionary metaphysics and the correspondence of truth

  • Jonathan Mark Olson

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis (MPhil)

Abstract

The following examines the relationship between reason and faith through the lens of Robert Jenson’s metaphysics. It explores Jenson’s concerns around ‘classical metaphysics’ but critically engages on the question of the correspondence of truth. It is the opinion of the present author that the loss of objective truth is a serious failing among postliberal theologians. Jenson’s brand of revisionary metaphysics, being committed to revision in light of the gospel, presents a unique take on this issue in light of his narrative, historical focus. Jenson was committed to a solution that avoided contemporary subjectivism and nihilism, which he considered incompatible with the gospel. He was likewise opposed to an abstract, ‘timeless’ notion of eternity, which shaped the possibility of the correspondence of truth. Namely, it must be found within time. I explore this by asking how it is that knowledge arising from faith may be objective for Jenson. I do so under two primary headings, redemption and creation. The first concerns the perspective of the believing community, following through to Jenson’s highly original anthropology. The second heading is Jenson’s alternative to natural theology and explores what knowledge of God creation may bring and how this relates to the knowledge of faith. Jenson’s metaphysics is not without its challenges under both headings – redemption and creation – these being partly related to his collapsing of the distinction between the two. Despite that, Jenson does indeed articulate a version of the truth which is more than subjective. The key conceptual move is that, for Jenson, the truth must correspond to God, not to human reason apart from God.
Date of Award16 Jun 2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of St Andrews
SupervisorKing-Ho Leung (Supervisor)

Keywords

  • Robert Jenson
  • Revisionary metaphysics
  • Correspondence of truth
  • Relativism

Access Status

  • Full text open

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