Monday, March 05, 2012

A Theologian Discovers His Eternal Error

Theologian William Hamilton has assumed room temperature. At least in this life.

As you'll see in this Assist News Service story, Hamilton died at his Portland, Oregon, apartment at the age of 87. He was famous for declaring God "dead," I suppose in some metaphorical fashion. Here is a brlef clip from the ASSIST story:

Overwhelmed by the problem of evil and human suffering in the 20th Century - especially the Holocaust -- Hamilton ceased to believe that God remained active and engaged in world affairs.
In a 2007 profile in The Oregonian newspaper, he recalled his journey away from orthodoxy, "I wrote out my two choices: 'God is not behind such radical evil, therefore he cannot be what we have traditionally meant by God' or 'God is behind everything, including the death camps -- and therefore he is a killer.'"

More notably, Hamilton wanted to "redefine" Christianity to make God unnecessary. To say his journey was a journey away from orthodoxy is putting it mildly. Other former atheists/agnostics in history—some of whom had quite high candlepower when it came to intellect—wrestled with the things Hamilton did and came to a quite different conclusion. C.S. Lewis was one of them.

I take no joy that Hamilton is dead. He no doubt now realizes the error of his ways, and will eventually hear from the One Whom he declared dead . . . "Depart from Me. I never knew you."

It's a double tragedy. Not just for Hamilton and his family, but also for the many who were misled through Hamilton's teachings. He will be held accountable for that as well.

A tragedy indeed.

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