David Fergusson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)


The doctrine of creation has undergone a resurgence of interest in recent years. Relatively neglected during mid-twentieth century theological debates, it has attracted wide attention in the last generation. There are several factors contributing to this renewed interest. The ecological crisis has brought about study of the theology of the natural environment, while also recalling the problematic legacy of earlier church teaching and practice in this field. Physicists have reinvigorated the case for older cosmological and design arguments for the existence of God as creator. Attention to the finely-tuned structure of the cosmos in the first moments of its existence has led to strong claims for a divine intention superintending the birth of the universe. At the same time, biblical scholars have rediscovered how pervasive is the theme of creation throughout Scripture. Salvation history has a cosmic context that cannot be ignored. Recognition of this Biblical integration of creation with other significant themes has in turn promoted a sense of its significance for other articles of faith. This applies particularly with respect to the doctrines of the Trinity, anthropology and redemption. In the field of comparative theology, study of the doctrine of creation has been undertaken with
reference not only to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam but also to the eastern religions. Some discussion of each of areas will be offered, following an initial account of the doctrine of creation in Scripture and the history of the church.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOxford Handbook of Systematic Theology
EditorsJohn Webster, Iain Torrance, Kathryn Tanner
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)978-0199569649
Publication statusPublished - 10 Nov 2009


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