David R. Coward

Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Robert K. Johnston, Ronald H. Nash

Degree Program

Department of Philosophy & Religion

Degree Type

Master of Arts


Donald G. Bloesch, an American theologian and seminary professor, is a leading spokesman for contemporary Protestant evangelicalism, a theological position that lies somewhere between fundamentalism and neo-orthodoxy. Heavily influenced by the German theologian, Karl Barth, Bloesch employs a methodology in which theology is based on revelation alone, unsupported by philosophy or the arguments of human reason. For Blosech, revelation is basically alien to human culture and human thought-forms. Because of this, revelation cannot be comprehended by reason, but only by faith. Bloesch’s view leads to a dichotomy between faith and reason, a dichotomy that ultimately lessons the impact of his theological system in at least three ways. First of all, Bloesch is unable to utilize the insights of secular culture for the benefit of theology. Secondly, Bloesch’s distaste for philosophy results in his inadequate handling of the hermeneutical problem. Finally, Bloesch’s understanding of the alienation between revelation and culture can lead only to the increasing irrelevance of theology in the modern world.


Christianity | Religion | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion