There is no “God in the machine”

03 Jul
Cosmos as clock

Cosmos as clock

Because there is no machine.

Yes, you will not understand what I mean until I explain myself.  By this I am not talking about the plot device lampooned by Greek philosophers I am taking aim at Descartes, who talked about the human body as being machine-like, as distinct from the soul. That particular machine analogy was easily extended to the world at large (see here for more).

Rather, I assert that there is no God, or soul, in either of those “machines” because there are no biological or cosmological machines.

I will explain myself more in an upcoming post.  For now, I assert this: analogies are critical.

The creation we know is not God’s machine or technology, but His art – not so much like a painting, as C.S. Lewis said, but His living art – the distinct, unequal and beautiful (but diseased!  Sin…) partner with whom He dances, always animating and upholding her* .

More later in a couple days…


*Yes, and particularly His treasured bride, the Church.

Image credit: 


Posted by on July 3, 2014 in Uncategorized


2 responses to “There is no “God in the machine”

  1. Rev. Karl Hess

    July 5, 2014 at 6:38 pm

    This is interesting, because I started reading Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan, and he begins the book by describing man as a machine, and I instantly took exception to that. But then I wonder whether that analogy is any worse than any other, so long as it is recognized to be an analogy and not mistaken for the reality.

  2. infanttheology

    July 7, 2014 at 9:21 pm

    Pastor Hess,

    Great comment. Right on. I hope you like the new post going into detail.

    Certainly an analogy to be downplayed…



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