Mathematics declaring the glory of God
This article discussed the question ‘Does God speak through the language of mathematics?’ For centuries, mathematicians with different religious backgrounds would have answered this question in the affirmative. Due to changes in mathematics from the 19th century onwards, this question cannot be answ...
Published in:  Verbum et ecclesia 

Main Author:  
Format:  Electronic Article 
Language:  English 
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Published: 
Univ.
2022

In: 
Verbum et ecclesia
Year: 2022, Volume: 43, Issue: 1, Pages: 17 
Standardized Subjects / Keyword chains:  B
Mathematics
/ Word of God
/ Track
/ Truth
/ Community
/ Rationality
/ Infinity
/ Interdisciplinarity
/ Systematic philosophy
/ Systematic theology

IxTheo Classification:  CF Christianity and Science 
Further subjects:  B
Beauty
B Infinity B General Revelation B philosophy of mathematics B Truth B unreasonable effectiveness 
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Summary:  This article discussed the question ‘Does God speak through the language of mathematics?’ For centuries, mathematicians with different religious backgrounds would have answered this question in the affirmative. Due to changes in mathematics from the 19th century onwards, this question cannot be answered as easily as it used to be. If one regards mathematical concepts as creations of the human mind, it is difficult to argue that mathematical formulae exist in a divine mind. The article argued that there were traces of the divine in mathematics. Six kinds of traces were explained: (1) the existence of indisputable truth, (2) the existence of beauty, (3) the importance of community, (4) rational speaking about infinity, (5) the discovery that speaking about unseen and abstract objects is reasonable and (6) the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics. In practice, traces (1), (2) and (6) are probably the most convincing. Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: This article is very much interdisciplinary as it combines mathematics and theology, especially the philosophy of mathematics and systematic theology. 

ISSN:  20747705 
Contains:  Enthalten in: Verbum et ecclesia

Persistent identifiers:  DOI: 10.4102/ve.v43i1.2432 