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Title: A truth best told through fiction : on developing the Catholic presentation of the doctrine of Satan as a mythic probe into the possible
Author: McGill, Alan
ISNI:       0000 0004 5372 0343
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2016
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The Catholic Church's stated teachings on the interpretation of scripture provide a mandate for exegetes to interpret the biblical text in light of the historical-critical method, including attention to its literary genres, so as to yield findings that can contribute to the development of doctrine. With particular reference to myth, Catholic exegetes have adopted an understanding of the genre as the symbolic expression of limitations and possibilities that characterize the human experience, rather than a reconstruction, even in figurative terms, of specific historical events involving particular personages. In view of these hermeneutical considerations, this thesis proposes that the Church's presentation of the doctrine of Satan should be emancipated from a historicized interpretation that appeals to mythical narratives as though they affirm the existence and historical misdeeds of Satan as a particular ontological being. The myths that give rise to the doctrine of Satan have long explored possibilities in the relationship between the Creator and free-willed creatures. As such, the doctrine can be developed so as to express the possibility that a person might irrevocably reject God's invitation to friendship, and hence experience the condition traditionally referred to as 'hell', yet still be sustained by God's unconditional commitment to being.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BT Doctrinal Theology ; BX Christian Denominations