Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Cosmological Contingency and Logical Necessity: G. Florovsky and T. Torrance

This lecture was delivered in April 2011 at the Orthodox Theology and the Sciences Conference held in Sofia, Bulgaria.

By Matthew Baker
Fordham University, New York, USA

After long neglect, Fr Georges Florovsky is now finally again being talked about. Over the past two years, conferences have been held in five countries, a society has been established at Princeton, and articles are appearing in various journals – all dealing with Florovsky's thought and influence.

Some of this talk is highly critical. Some argue that Florovsky's neo-patristic hermeneutic must be, not extended, but transcended, left behind, if Orthodoxy is to rise to the needed engagement with modern culture. Given the crucial place of the sciences in the birth of the “modern,” it is interesting, to say the least, how little engagement with scientific thought one finds among these critics.

In contrast to these critics, the work of Alexei Nesteruk has recently shown us how contemporary physics and Orthodox theology in a distinctly Florovskian vein may be brought into deep and fruitful interaction. But there is another figure upon whose crucial contributions Nesteruk explicitly builds, who has also not yet received the interest deserved from the Orthodox. Of all 20th century theologians, T.F. Torrance's offering to theology-science dialogue is the most estimable, and informed by a profound engagement with the Greek Fathers. In a certain sense, the two approaches of Torrance and Florovsky are joined in Nesteruk's attempted neo-patristic synthesis of theology and physics.

This exchange is not one Nesteruk inaugurated. After meeting, probably at the first WCC assembly in Amsterdam, 1948, Florovsky and Torrance corresponded occasionally into the 70's. Torrance's published works also contain positive remarks on aspects of Florovsky's thought.

In the context of theology-science dialogue, however, it is on the theme of the contingency of creation that Torrance most frequently repairs to Florovsky for insight. In what follows, then, we will consider Florovsky and Torrance's contributions to our understanding of created contingency in theology and science, and then conclude by asking what, if anything, the respective approaches of these two theologians have to offer to one another as well as to the wider enterprise of Church theology.


As Lewis Shaw observes, Florovsky “was not . . . like T. F. Torrance . . . interested in quantum mechanics, or a dialogue between theoretical physics and theology. He was concerned with the dynamic of creation, inasmuch as it pertained to the exercise of freedom in salvation history, the key to which is eschatology.”1 Nevertheless, during his undergraduate studies at Odessa, Florovsky was strongly influenced by the combination of experimental science, metaphysics and mathematics characteristic of the Marburg Neo-Kantians as well as by the mathematical philosophy of Georg Cantor. These influences are evident in his 1916 essay, “Contemporary Doctrines of Logical Inference.”2 By the early 20's, however, Florovsky shook off these tendencies, devoting special energy to attacking the attempt of Cantor and the Neo-Kantians to arrive at the ideal structures of the world on a calculus-based model, through logical deduction.

It is in this context – logic – that we find Florovsky first discussing the topic of contingency. In a 1923 essay, “Religious Experience and Philosophical Confession,”3 he observes how in neo-Kantian transcendental logic, “the gap between the 'eternal' and the 'transitory' is leveled”4 – God and the world become necessary to, and logically deducible from, one another. He objects:

The Absolute cannot be a principle of explanation and deductive reasoning. . . . Nothing, not even an infinite (in indefinitum) continued ascent, can lead one out of the creaturely limitation, and overcome the gap between the uncontingent and contingent. . . . Natural knowledge . . . reaches only the basis of the world, created and contingent in its very becoming, whose existing is not inevitable. And, therefore, cognition cannot reach the state of necessity . . . The whole axiomatic and a priori apparatus of thought is “accidental,” i.e. it reigns only by factual validity. The world appears to us in its definite features – that is a fact which does not undergo any consideration – but by no means is it “necessary.”5

Florovsky extends this perspective in his 1924 essay “On the Substantiation of Logical Relativism.”6 As he argues, all judgments function within a logical system dependent on axioms which cannot be proven within the terms of that system, and which “can neither be deduced a priori from the concept of 'thought in general' … nor transformed into an 'inherent idea' that is unrelated to experience.”7 Axioms therefore form a chosen interpretation of experience which, however, cannot be logically derived from that experience.8 Further, he says, inductive judgments are marked by a double relativity: dependence on a specific axiom-set and upon a limited sphere of experience. The truth of a physical theorem is conditioned by its scope and the success of its predictions; the postulation of “laws” indicates precisely such predictive success. Yet observational fields may broaden or be subject to unforeseen change, and other axioms might be found to better account for the facts.

Florovsky concludes that for any logical system to claim an absolute, unconditional foundation, “the necessity of a particular world-order would have had to be proven.”9 Yet such necessity is completely without demonstration – not only as regards the empirical world, but no less, the eidetic principles or logoi which form its basis. Without such demonstration, then, we must choose between two basic beliefs – necessity or freedom: either the world has to be, in which case everything in it is determined, or else the world is dependent on some free will outside itself for its existence.10

Andrew Parlee has compared Florovsky's method here to that of Gregory Palamas: “Palamas used a christocentric presuppositional method to relativize Aristotelian logic, hence Aristotle’s doctrine of the Unmoved Mover, natural knowledge in general and natural theology in particular. Centuries later Florovsky used the same presuppositional method in his 1924 essay 'On the Substantantion of Logical Relativism,' but did not acknowledge Palamas as a source.”11 Closer to our own time, Florovsky's case for logical relativism seems to anticipate Kurt Gödel’s 1931 “incompleteness theorem.”12

A related argument is found in Florovsky's 1925 essay “On the Metaphysics of Judgment.”13 Like the analytic philosopher Quine in his celebrated 1951 essay, “Two Dogmas of Empiricism,”14 Florovsky subjects Kant's analytic/synthetic distinction here to rigorous test. This distinction, he argues, pertains really not to two types of judgment, but rather two aspects of judgment: objective definition and subjective process. In one sense, all definitions are analytic once established. Yet in actual cognition there are no analytic judgments: “all judgments and all concepts suggest a certain systemic perspective around and behind themselves.” Only thus is it possible to create definitions in the first place: by comparison and differentiation of conceptual objects – that is, by synthetic judgment.

But, Florovsky concludes, synthetic or non-necessary objects of judgment are only possible if the world itself is also such an object: “The existence of non-essential predicates is possible only on the condition of the limitedness of the world – its limitedness by another, which deprives it of immanent, closed-off self-definition.” But this requires some power of free contingent causality outside the world:

It is possible to speak meaningfully of “possibilities” in relation to the entire world only on the condition that at a certain moment in the past there existed total and real indifference. … It is necessary to allow for a free will outside of the world, one which will establish some “arrangement” or other. … In the final analysis, the question of the objective structure of judgment may be reduced to the fundamental metaphysical a priori of necessity and freedom.15

As we have seen, Florovsky repeatedly drives the consideration of logical predication to the fundamental question of created contingence. Thought is event-constituted and contingent: there can be no logically certain foundation for logic, and, no system of metaphysics completely demonstrable by pure reason. The world, both phenomenally and in its noetic bases, is non-necessary, eventful, open-ended – contingent upon the free creative will of God. Starting with the 1928 essay “Tvar' i Tvarnost,” Florovsky will develop these early insights theologically, with extensive patristic documentation.

A crucial touchstone here is Athanasius and the Arian controversy.16 Florovsky writes: “In the perspective of the Arian controversy two tasks were closely related to each other: to demonstrate the mystery of the Divine Generation as an integral feature of the Divine Being itself, and to emphasize the contingency of the creaturely Cosmos, which contingency can also be seen in the order of existence.”17 Florovsky credits Athanasius for accomplishing both tasks, having broken open the cosmological necessity of Greek ontology with his simple distinction between the Son's generation according to essence (kata physin) and the creation of the world according to will (kata voulesin).

A second touchstone is Maximus the Confessor's doctrine of the logoi. The logoi are neither the divine essence, nor the essence or hypostasis of creatures, but “designs and calls,” “the truth of a thing, its trancendental entelechy,” as existing in the will of God. They are theletikai ennoiai, volitional thoughts which God “thinks up” regarding the world. In this sense, the contingency “is double: on the part of the Created, and on the part of the Creator Himself.”18 That is: both creation in its actual existence, and the “divine ideas,” the “exemplars” or “preordinations” of creation. And yet the first is by no means reducible to the second: although the world finds its prototypes in the logoi, it is created out of nothing in form and being, and so constitutes a radical ontological novelty even for God.19

This notion of radical novelty is crucial to the theology of history which is Florovsky's deepest concern. Creation, while having a beginning in time, has no end: its contingency is marked by both novelty and permanence. Whereas for Greek thought, “only that what was 'necessary' could claim a true and permanent existence . . . Now, the whole perspective has changed in the light of Revelation.”20 For at the heart of Revelation stands the historic Christ, whose “manifold actions were not simply particular cases or instances of general law, but… singular events,”21 “unique and ‘ultimate,’ that is, decisive, ‘critical,’ and crucial, wrought once forever, ephhapax.”22 Moreover, these events make possible other such events in the history of the Church:

The sacred history of salvation does not consist of mere happenings that pass away and are irrelevant as such but of events that stay for ever. The history of salvation is still going on, is still enacted in the redeemed community, in the Church of God. There are here not only happenings, but events too, that are to stay.23

It is this concept of historical contingency, of “events that stay forever,” that is surely at work in Florovsky's stated conviction that “the teaching of the Fathers is a permanent category of Christian existence, a constant and ultimate measure and criterion.”24 From the start, his interest in contingency was pitched against the ancient Hellenistic and modern Enlightenment dualism between “necessary” truths of reason and “accidental” truths of history, a dualism which threatened faith in the historical Incarnation and historical Church. For Florovsky, in contrast, the rationality of theology is a contingent rationality, an a posteriori reasoning after the empirical datum of salvation history,25 informed always by the “theoretical” component of faith in Christ the Word of God.


T. F. Torrance refers repeatedly to Florovsky's essays “Creation and Creaturehood” (1928), “The Idea of Creation in Christian Philosophy” (1951), and “St. Athanasius' Concept of Creation” (1962). He confesses special indebtedness to the last,26 and follows Florovsky's interpretation of how “the idea held by Origen that God's relation to the universe is necessary to his own Being was comprehensively destroyed by Athanasius.”27 Torrance credits Florovsky for insight into contingency. He writes:

As the late Professor Georges Florovsky used to point out, this idea of the radical contingency of the universe and its inherent rational order was utterly alien to and indeed quite unintelligible to the Greek mind. For classical Greek thought the universe was necessary and self-explanatory, eternally co-existing with God. The rational forms immanent in the universe which gave it its beautiful geometrical order were held to be divine, so that to speak of the universe as created in form and being out of nothing was regarded as an act of impious atheism.28

Note here how Torrance also brings his own characteristic emphases to the discussion of contingence. Where Florovsky stressed indeterminacy and freedom, Torrance's highlights contingent order or rationality. In Torrance's definition, contingence means “that as created out of nothing the universe has no self-subsistence and no ultimate stability of its own, but that it is nevertheless endowed with an authentic reality and integrity of its own which must be respected. By contingent order is meant that the orderly universe is not self-sufficient or ultimately self-explaining but is given a rationality and reliability in its orderliness which depend on and reflect God's own eternal rationality and reliability.”29

Here too, however, Torrance is, like Florovsky, reliant on the Fathers. Torrance points out that it was Athanasius who employed the Aristotelian term for the contingent or “accidental,” ἐνδέχομενος, with a new significance, signifying neither chance or accident nor rational necessity, but a kind of dependent spatio-temporal rationality pointing beyond itself in an incomplete, open-ended way to God as its ultimate ground and reason.30 Torrance also calls attention to St. Basil's teaching that “the creative commands of God gave rise to orderly sequences and enduring structures in the world of time and space. . . . the voice of God gave rise to laws of nature.” This he interprets to mean that all the laws of nature, all its intelligible order, are to be regarded as dependent on the Word of God as their source and ground. Thus even physical law must be treated as a contingent form of order which is finally intelligible only in the Logos of God the Creator, for it is upon that ground that its constancy reposes.31

According to Torrance, the patristic teaching regarding the creation of both matter and form out of nothing challenged the Ptolemaic and Aristotelian dualism between phenomenal and noetic realms, introducing the notion of a contingent rationality distinct from divine reason. This development laid the groundwork for a new unitary conception of science, in which theoretical and empirical dimensions are held together and the rationality of the cosmos is to be sought not in universal geometrical forms abstracted from real time and space, but precisely in the actual spatio-temporal order with all its singularities. Torrance sees indications of this unitary conception in the thought of John Philoponos, who offered an account of space and time in terms of the movement of light which Torrance argues was a remarkable anticipation of general relativity theory. Philoponos stressed the finite contingency of created light in its difference from and dependence upon the uncreated light of God.

After this, however, Torrance argues that the concept of contingence had a rather stunted development. Beginning with Boethius, and under influence of Aristotelian philosophy and logic, contingence was equated with the “accidental” (συμβεβηκός), as opposed to the concept of “necessity” (ἀνάνκη), thus referring to irrational chance events and “as such was not regarded as subject to true scientific knowledge.” Torrance holds that it is only with Duns Scotus that a proper concept of contingency was recovered in the West; here Florovsky agrees.32 However, old problems remained, in that Aristotelian concepts of causality and of the Unmoved Mover were carried over into Newton's physics in the form of absolute mathematical space and time as an inertial framework formalized strictly within the necessitarian structure of Euclidian geometry and conceived in opposition to the “relative” space and time in which real events occur. Finally, this dualism between absolute or noumenal and relative or phenomenal space-time was mentally internalized in radically anthropocentric manner in Kant's forms of intuition.33 Contingence was again ruled out of rational order.

Torrance has elaborated the problems which these cultural developments entailed for theology, leading to Deistic conceptions of God, and to neo-Arian Christologies within Liberal Protestantism. The dualism between noumena and phenomena resulted in a reduction of the biblical account of God's saving action in space and time to a merely moral, poetic, symbolic or mythological meaning. The denial of man's ability to know any reality in its internal relations made any fully Trinitarian confession problematic, depriving theology of objective referent in God himself. The ditch announced by Lessing, between necessary truths of reason and accidental truths of history, disqualified the “scandal of particularity” found in the revelation to Israel and the historical Incarnation from any claim to real knowledge, reducing faith to a mere feeling of dependence, as in Schleiermacher, or to a motivating belief in universal moral ideals, as in Harnack. The same dualism in the form of Wilhelm Hermann's distinction between Historie and Geschichte introduced a separation of the “Jesus of history” from the “Christ of faith,” leading to Bultmann's demythologizing, in which the kerygma of salvation no longer entails the confession of a real bodily resurrection – impossible anyway in a closed space-time continuum – but only the disciples' inward experience of faith and existential hope.34

In view of these developments, the rediscovery of contingency by physics is in Torrance's view of enormous interest to theology. Here the crucial figures are James Clerk Maxwell and Albert Einstein. Clerk Maxwell's formulation of the mathematical properties of light in differential equations, says Torrance, “formed the pattern for a new type of law,”35 one in which “contingent events cannot be treated like random or chance events,” for they have a distinctive rational order of their own. Further, Maxwell's insight into the finite speed of light and electromagnetic waves “carried with it an understanding of the universe as finite . . . and thus not as self-sufficient or self-explanatory but as pointing beyond itself altogether. . . . the notion of contingence, smothered in classical physics and mechanics, broke out once more into the open in a decisive way demanding scientific recognition.”36

Einstein drew general conclusions from these insights, recognizing in light a universal cosmological constant. The fact that this constant was finite led him to ask a question which science had set aside since the Enlightenment: the question of why nature acts as it does. According to Torrance, Einstein “realized that far from being self-explanatory, the laws of nature are finally open-structured and are contingent upon an ultimate ground of order beyond themselves.”37 In this questioning, Torrance discerns the beginnings of a re-entry of ontology into theoretical science.

Further, following the rise of four-dimensional geometries of space and time, Einstein realized that Euclidean geometry, with its necessary relations conceived independently of real time and space, was a distorting lens. As Torrance interprets it, the insight that geometry must be “lodged in the heart of physics” and “pursued . . . in indissoluble unity with physics” meant that theoretical and material dimensions of scientific inquiry must be always integrated: geometry, the theoretical component, “is not a conceptual system complete in itself, and is consistent as geometry only as it is completed beyond itself in the material content of physics.”

This transformation of epistemological framework is paralleled in mathematics by Kurt Gödel's 1931 “incompleteness theorum,” demonstrating “the inherent limitation of the axiomatic method in which all arithmetical truths are logically derived from a determinate set of axioms. The consistency of such a formal system, if it is consistent, cannot be demonstrated by a proof within it. If it is inconsistent it is incomplete. . . . Thus undecidable propositions presented in formal systems become decidable through coordination with higher types . . . This demonstrates that in the last analysis we operate in formal systems with basic concepts and axioms which cannot be completely defined . . . their truth and meaning lie ultimately beyond themselves.”38

Logic and mathematics operate with open-textured, incomplete symbols and informal thought-structures which can never be fully articulated,39 although they do come to be known as we rely on them in developing formal structures. Thus, it is impossible to state completely how statements relate to being, without resolving everything in mere statements. Torrance correlates this insight with Alan Truring's discovery of inherently “incomputable statements.”40 If mathematics reflects anything in the real structure of the universe, then the cosmos itself has something about which is essentially incomputable, open-ended. Contingence is a constitutive in the rational structure of all created order.

How is all this significant for theology? First, theology is able now to offer a more unitary rational account of God's saving action towards us within the conditions of our space-time universe. In the modern period, the doctrine of creation was often traded for a formalized natural theology framed in terms of necessary universal truths, known independently of the contingent, historical truths of Jesus Christ, Israel and the Church. The rediscovery of contingent rationality transforms this framework. Just as with the discovery of four-dimensional geometries, geometry is understood as a sub-set of natural science, not to be treated as an axiomatic deductive science in isolation from the material content of physics, so too natural theology cannot be properly conceived apart from, or prior to, the body of positive historical revelation in Jesus Christ, but only in indissoluble unity with it. Natural and revealed theology, like geometry and physics, remain formally distinguishable from one another; yet the former still remains an intrinsic sub-set of the latter.41 Theology which would be truly scientific and cosmic in scope must return again to begin, not with natural knowledge, the supposed truths of general human experience, but with “the scandal of particularity” – the material contingencies of revelation in Christ – and only from within that standpoint begin to speak of creation and of human nature.

Second, the rediscovery of contingent rationality enables a more open-ended account of creation and, thus, a more integrated account of creation and redemption. In that the universe cannot be other than as God wills or allows, one may speak of a certain “contingent 'necessity'” in created order, but never of an a priori logical necessity. Created laws are not “immanent divine necessities but empirical sequences and regularities, invariant relations, which God has imparted to nature amidst all the changes and varieties of its contingent processes.”42 Physical axioms thus must be understood as fluid, a posteriori, post hoc formulations, open to the freedom, variety and spontaneity at work in creation at diverse levels.43 But this means that God's redeeming action should not be thought of as a suspension of the space-time structures which we think of as natural laws, “far less . . . the abrogation of the God-given order in nature they express, but rather as the re-creating and deepening of that order in the face of all that threatens to break it down.” God “overcomes our disorder by bringing his own creative being redemptively to bear upon our existence from within it, and deepens its ordering by correlating it on its own contingent levels in a new way with the power of his own transcendent life and rationality, where its ultimate and sufficient reason is lodged.”44 The entropy and decay inherent in contingent order which are turned to evil on account of man's apostasy and sin are taken up and healed in the redeeming work of the Incarnate Logos. As Torrance writes: “The only contingence we know is a disordered contingence, so that the work of the incarnation within it is . . . a creative re-ordering of our existence in which the passion and resurrection of Jesus Christ play an absolutely essential and climactic part.”45


In a letter to Florovsky in October 1973, during preparation for the Florovsky Festschrift to which Torrance contributed his essay “The Relation of the Incarnation to Space in Nicene Theology," Torrance describes his “method” of inter-relating patristic theology and science succinctly. He writes:

I am greatly encouraged by your reaction to my piece in the Festschrift in your honor. . . . to have this agreement and support from you above all others pleases and encourages me greatly. The Greek Fathers remain my main love and I repair to them all the time, and learn from them more than from any other period or set of theologians in Church history. I have been reinforced by reading the works of Sambursky of Jerusalem on the physical world of the Greeks and Stoics and Late Antiquity in my interpreting of people like Origen and Athanasius: to see them against that scientific background throws into considerable light much of their thinking which we fail to grasp adequately if we read them over against the background simply of Platonic and Aristotelian thought.46

Torrance's mention of Florovsky's positive response should lead us to ask the question: What is Torrance's offering to the neo-patristic approach sketched by Florovsky? Both Florovsky and Torrance were interested in the patristic transformation of Hellenistic culture. What Torrance brings uniquely to the study of this transformation, is his setting of the Fathers against the backdrop of scientific culture of their day, and his inter-relation of this same patristic theology with insights from contemporary science.

Torrance like Florovsky stressed the fact that the repentance which is the doorway to the Gospel means precisely μετάνοια – change of mind. However, Torrance also underlined the fact that for people to be converted requires also a fundamental transformation of the cultural framework in which they think and act.47 The influence of scientific ideas is a factor no theologian can safely ignore. All the more in that certain definite beliefs about created order are central to the Christian faith and creed. As Florovsky put it, “An adequate idea of Creation is the distinctive test of the integrity of Christian mind and faith. An inadequate conception of Creation, on the contrary, is inevitably subversive of the whole fabic of Christian beliefs.”48 Torrance elaborates:

The theologian is concerned with God as he reveals himself to us within space and time through historical Israel and in the incarnation of his Word in Jesus Christ, so that we cannot divorce what God reveals to humankind from the medium of spatio-temporal structures which he uses in addressing his Word to human beings. Empirical correlates therefore have an ineradicable place in theology, as in natural science – hence theological truths and concepts may not be resolved away or 'demythologized' without losing their essential content or import. . . . Since both the scientist and the theologian pursue their inquiries within the same structures of space and time, there is inevitably an overlap in their inquiries. In that case there must be some basic connection between the concepts of natural science, which are spatio-temporal, and the concepts of theological science, which for all their difference have spatio-temporal ingredients.49

While Florovsky's stress fell more into history than cosmos, he as much as Torrance opposed the pietistic religion of “inward experience” and its modern existentialist radicalization: his concern is to underscore the truth that salvation and the knowledge of God occur as real objective events within the history of the cosmos. Torrance explores and bears witness to the same truth, extending the neo-patristic approach with that of theological-scientific interrelation. Precisely for this reason, Orthodox theologians and pastors who have learned from Florovsky can only profit further from Torrance's robust thought, finding their confidence in the epistemic strength of the Gospel and the tradition of the Fathers empowered and renewed therein.


1. Lewis Shaw, “Georges Florovsky's Model of Orthodox Ecclesiology,” Window Quarterly, Vol. 2, No. 3, 1991.

2. Lewis Shaw, “The Philosophical Evolution of Georges Florovsky: Philosophical Psychology and the Philosophy of History,” Saint Vladimir's Theological Quarterly, p. 239-40.

3. Published in Czech as “Náboženská zkušenost a filiofické vyznání,” Ruch filosoficky, Vol. 3, No. 3, Nos. 9-10, 1923, 298-306. Although a Serbian version was published in 1924, no English translation has been published, and the essay was never reprinted. My discussion of this article relies upon a rough English translation manuscript done in Florovsky's own hand, found in the Florovsky archives at the Princeton University Firestone library.

4. “Religious Experience and Philosophical Confession,” Princeton archive manuscript.

5. Ibid.

6. “On the Substantiation of Logical Relativism,” in Florovsky, Philosophy, pp. 143-169.

7. Ibid., p. 168.

8. Ibid., p. 160.

9. Ibid., p. 167

10. Ibid., p. 169

11. Andrew Parlee. The Epistemology of Georges Florovsky, unpublished dissertation, Westminster Theological Seminary, 2006, p. 252; cf pp. 253-255.

12.Kurt Gödel, “Über formal unentscheidbare Sätze der Principia Mathematica und verwandter Systeme” [“On Formally Undecidable Propositions of Principia Mathematica and Related Systems”], Monatshefte für Mathematik und Physik 38, 1931, pp.173-98.

13. Florovsky, “On the Metaphysics of Judgment,” in Philosophy, pp. 66-73,

14. W.V.O. Quine, "Two Dogmas of Empiricism," The Philosophical Review 60, 1951, pp. 20-43.

15. Florovsky, Philosophy, p. 73.

16. See “Creation and Creaturehood,” p. 52-54; also, Eastern Fathers of the Fourth Century, chapt. 1 and 2; “St. Athanasius' Concept of Creation,” in Aspects of Church History, pp. 39-62.

17. Florovsky, “St. Athanasius' Concept of Creation,” p. 59.

18. Florovsky, “The Idea of Creation in Christian Philosophy,” p. 55.

19. See Florovsky, “The Idea of Creation in Christian Philosophy,” Eastern Churches Quarterly, 8.2 (1949), 53-77, at pp. 73-74, 64-65.

20. See “The Idea of Creation in Christian Philosophy,” 56.

21. “Predicament of the Christian Historian,” 59.

22. Ibid., 58.

23. Florovsky, “The Eastern Orthodox Church and the Ecumenical Movement,” Theology Today, vol. 7, no. 1, April 1950, 68-79, at 76.

24. “St Gregory Palamas and the Tradition of the Fathers,” 107.

25. Florovsky, Christianity and Culture, 32-33

26. Torrance, The Trinitarian Faith, p. 86.

27. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, p. 4. See also Divine Meaning, pp. 181-, 184-85, for references to the same. Also, Torrance, The Christian Frame of Mind: Reason, Order and Openness in Theology and Natural Science, p. 2: “It was above all to Athanasius that a clear Christian understanding of the creation of the world, including its space and time, was indebted. He achieved that argument against Origen's notions of the eternal co-existence of the world with God and the preexistence of rational souls, and in establishing against Arian heretics the fundamental principle that there is no community in being or likeness between the creature and God, for God is beyond all being.”

28. Torrance, The Christian Frame of Mind: Reason, Order and Openness in Theology and Natural Science, p. 2.

29. Torrance, Divine and Contingent Order, pp. vii-viii. My italics.

30. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, p. 6.

31. Torrance, The Christian Frame of Mind, p. 4.

32. Ibid., p. 38.

33. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, p. 66.

34. See chapter two of Torrance, The Ground and Grammar of Theology, “Emerging from the Cultural Split,” for more discussion.

35. Theological and Natural Science, p. 68, for this and the above summary.

36. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, p. 69.

37. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, 70.

37. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, p. 69.

38. Torrance, Theological and Natural Science, p. 74.

39. Torrance, Transformation and Convergence in the Frame of Knowledge, 136-145, 149, 156f.

40. See Torrance, Reality and Evangelical Theology: The Realism of Christian Revelation, 73-74.

41. See “Natural Theology in the Thought of Karl Barth,” in Transformation and Convergence in the Frame of Knowledge, 285-302.

42. Divine and Contingent Order, p. 38.

43. Divine and Contingent Order, p. 23. See Florovsky, “The Predicament of the Christian Historian”: “In retrospect, we seem to perceive the logic of the events which unfold themselves with an alleged inner necessity. So that we get the impression that it really could not have happened otherwise.”

44. Divine and Contingent Order, p. 24.

45. Divine and Contingent Order, p. 135.

46. Florovsky papers, Princeton University Firestone Library Rare Books and Archives.

47. See Torrance, Preaching Jesus Christ Today.

48. Florovsky, “Idea of Creation in Christian Philosophy,” p. 54.

49. “Incarnation and Atonement in the Light of Modern Scientific Rejection of Dualism,” in Thomas F. Torrance, Preaching Jesus Christ Today: The Gospel and Scientific Thinking, pp. 48-49.