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The early nineteenth century

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Saved by Alicia Roth
on September 18, 2008 at 4:55:42 pm

Summary of Today's Topic



   Christianity is threatened by plurality or at least experiences tenisons wiht plurality.  There are some basic responses to this tension found by different people over the years.   One response is to deny pluralism and state that life exists only on Earth, a second response is the say that Christ redeems the universe, a third respons is that Christ goes from world to world redeeming them, a forth response is to say that sin occurs only on Earth and only Earth would need to be redeemed, and a final response is that this is an insoluble problem and we just don't know.  Theism on the other hand has experiences no threat from pluralism and even tends to support pluralism because it believes in a God that does not interact with the world.  Theism is however threatened by Darwinism.


     Thomas Chalmers was part of the evengelical movement of the 19th century and he wrote 7 discourses on plurality and Christianity.  In his discourses he is trying to show that Paine is making a false problem and that a person can believe in both Christianity and pluralism, with his overall goal of inspiring the listeners/readers to become more Christian.  Chalmers says that there are a couple of different possible answers- one that Christ redeems the universe, one that sine only occurs on Earth, and that he just doesn't know because it is an insoluble problem.  


     Thomas Dick was a teacher who retired early and became a prolific writer.  All of his books regarding astronomy also talked about plurality.  He had many theories about the moon saying that it was the most intresting besides the sun.  He believed that everything was inhabited, the moon was inhabited if only we developed a systematic way of observing the moon we would see signs of inhabitance, all planets were inhabited, the rings of Saturn were inhabited, the edges of the rings of Saturn were inhabited.  He made an estimated calculation of the population of the solar system based on the aforementioned places being inhabited with about the same amount of people as England.  He said the total population of the solar system was roughly 21 trillion inhabitants and that was probably an underestimate because England can probably hold about twice the number of people living there in his time, so the solar system could probably hold about twice as much as he estimated.




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