This book traces the historical lineages of Alvin Plantinga's religious epistemology from Plato through Augustine and Calvin. It focuses upon this epistemology as a philosophical interpretation of what is generally taken to be a narrow theological doctrine. The author provides a textually based and closely reasoned introduction to the epistemological ideas of Plato, Augustine, Calvin, Plantinga, and several other writers and shows the continuity of a certain approach to the knowledge of God; it may be called the Platonic—Augustinian—Reformed (or Calvinist) approach.
Dewey J. Hoitenga, Jr. is Professor of Philosophy at Grand Valley State University, Allendale, Michigan.
"The author succeeds in showing the roots of Plantinga's 'Reformed Epistemology,' and in the process presents one of the clearest expositions available of this particular tradition's view of the relation of faith to reason. Particularly important is his discussion of this topic in Augustine.
"Hoitenga writes from within the tradition he writes about; hence he avoids many of the errors made by those who have written about Plantinga from outside the tradition. The strength of the book lies in his disclosing the historical antecedents of this current dominant theory in American philosophy of religion. This 'placing' of Plantinga and the Reformed tradition is a helpful and worthwhile contribution." — Bruce R. Reichenbach
"It's carefully considered scholarship, rooting Reformed epistemology in the history of philosophy and showing its relation to age-long philosophic disputes. It is not a survey, but an argument for a well-developed point of view akin to but not identical with those of others under discussion. It is at the cutting edge of contemporary epistemology and philosophy of religion." — Arthur F. Holmes, Wheaton College
"I know of no book which goes into the historical depth that Hoitenga's does." — Jay M. Van Hook, Northwestern College