Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Plantinga's Defense of Religious Exclusivism

Among the world religions is Christianity the true one? I just finished teaching the "comparative religions" section in my Philosophy of Religion course. One of the articles related to this section is Alvin Plantinga's essay "Pluralism: A Defense of Religious Exclusivism." (Found in Louis Pojman's Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology)

This is a very weighty and excellent piece that deals with the idea that one religious view (such as Christianity) could be believed to be true to the exclusion of other religious views, and that being such an exclusivist need not mean that one is thereby arbitrary, irrational, unjustified, egotistic, unwarranted, or even oppressive and imperialistic.

I consider Plantinga's work necessary reading for anyone who believes, as I do, that it is true that God exists, and that it is also true that salvation is found in the sacrificial death and resurrection of God's Son, Jesus. Plantinga's 82 minute lecture can be heard here. Download it, get a cup of coffee, and listen closely, stopping to take notes on the way.