Encouragement from Philo

I have now listened to the first 80 podcasts of The History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps by Peter Adamson, which can be downloaded at historyofphilosophy.net.  For the past year, have been slowly working through these podcasts and through Thales to Dewey by Gordon Clark while trying to read a lot of the primary source material to which they make reference.

Peter Adamson
Peter Adamson

Last week, I really enjoyed Dr. Adamson’s podcast on Philo of Alexandria.  Philo was a Jewish Platonist who, to my knowledge, was the first in the Judeo-Christian tradition to have a doctrine of The Logos.  Philo also identified similarities between the Platonic Forms and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  Philo also is one of the earliest theologians to apply a Greek allegorization hermeneutic to the Old Testament.  In order to explain where the Greek poetical writings (like Homer and Hesiod) give embarrassing accounts of gods doing immoral and irrational things, some Greek theologians would find deeper meanings in the text which went beyond a strict literal interpretation of historical accounts.  My pastor thinks that Christian Amillenialists take their cue from Philo and Origen.  🙂

Ronald Nash
Ronald Nash

As you probably know, the Apostle John had a Logos doctrine.  Dr. Ronald Nash has a lecture titled Hellenistic Philosophy in his RTS podcast series History of Philosophy and Christian Thought that also gives an interesting account of the Logos doctrine and its relation to the Gospel of John.  In addition to being a great introduction to Gordon Clark’s thought, the small book The Johannine Logos, which is now combined with What is Saving Faith, gives a more in depth account of the development of the Logos doctrine through Greek philosophy and eventually through the Gospel of John.  Gordon Clark believes that John was aware of some of the philosophical discussions around The Logos and wrote the prologue of his gospel to provide the true Logos doctrine; revealed by the Logos Himself.

 

This is a pretty exciting study, and I certainly recommend these 3 resources for anyone who is looking to get a deeper understanding of the philosophy of Philo, the apostle John, or Gordon Clark.

The Johannine Logos by Gordon Clark
The Johannine Logos by Gordon Clark

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  • Max

    Well, in my opinion Philo went too far sometimes, like, in his treatise “The Eternity of the World” he rejects the idea that time was created by God. He is interesting, though.