Good Book

And you can get it for free in various formats here. Basil Willey writes very nicely and with penetration about thought, poetry, philosophy and theology in the 17th Century. Older work, of course, but with the benefit of being extremely enjoyable reading.

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2 thoughts on “Good Book

  1. In working on the background to Finney, I have found Willey’s _The Eighteenth Century Background_ quite helpful. “The Nature of Things” is an ever-present but elusive concept in the theories of moral government propounded by Nathaniel Taylor and Charles Finney. In the theodicies of these two, it is something like a universe in which God exists along with all other moral beings. Its function is to ensure that God is accountable. Taylor and Finney assume rather than articulate its existence and function. Willey provides useful perspective on it, for folk like myself who have not engaged this aspect of the conversation previously. It’s a twisted ball of yarn in some ways. Willey notes on page two, for instance, that c. 1940 someone had ascertained sixty different senses in which the term “nature” might be used. Argh! Modernity.

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