Asking "big questions" is fundamental to our humanity. What is the meaning and purpose of life? What is truth? How do we know what we claim to know? What is justice? What happens after death? Veteran teachers Steve Wilkens and Alan Padgett guide readers to wrestle with twelve of the most foundational, philosophical questions facing humanity, and they reflect on these big questions with a lens rooted in faith. Christians, according to Wilkens and Padgett, should embrace their ability to probe these questions that have occupied some of the most brilliant minds in history. Instead of avoiding hard questions, a Christian approach to philosophy begins with the conviction that God invested humanity with a restless mind. From an early age, we are riddled with curiosity about the world, our place in it, and how the whole of it fits together. As Wilkens and Padgett show, questions about the inner world of our being are tied to the outer world that includes the entire created cosmos and God. Like all good gifts, the gift of questions comes with a challenge—of responsibility and hard thinking. We have a spiritual duty to pursue life’s deepest queries with virtue, fairness, reason, and, above all, a sense of worship and gratitude. Introduction to Philosophy: Christianity and the Big Questions is a perfect primer for students of philosophy and anyone interested in a Christian perspective on the timeless and universal perplexities of human existence.
Wilkens and Padgett’s volume is engaging and informative. It clearly reflects the work of seasoned scholars and will be an excellent introduction to philosophy.~Paul Copan, Pledger Family Chair and Professor of Philosophy and Ethics, Palm Beach Atlantic University
This is an extraordinarily accessible and engaging introductory text for students who are encountering philosophy for the first time—and especially for students in Christian colleges who may be bringing with them some doubts about the value of this encounter. Wilkens and Padgett have a long-standing commitment to the project of philosophical education in Christian contexts and share pastoral sensibilities that allow them to anticipate objections and develop compelling motivations. In addition, they have selected an admirably wide set of topics to address that could be very usefully supported by any number of collections of primary sources. I recommend this text warmly and enthusiastically for philosophy instructors looking for a secondary resource that puts emphasis on Christian integration.~Daniel Speak, Professor of Philosophy, Loyola Marymount University
Wilkens and Padgett’s Introduction to Philosophy: Christianity and the Big Questions is superb. Historically informed and highly readable, it will be of great use to those wanting to think Christianly about philosophy’s central questions. I recommend it enthusiastically.~Thomas M. Crisp, Professor of Philosophy, Biola University