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Flashcards in Origins and Meanings Deck (67):

What are the catholic beliefs about creation?

1. Nothing existed before God created it
2. Only God creates, because he is omnipotent
3. Believe in creation ex nihilo
4. Belief can be found in the bible and writing of st Augustine


What is the st Augustine passage? (Creation)

“You, O Lord made something in the beginning, which is of yourself, in your wisdom, which is born of your own substance, and you created this thing out of nothing”


What is the fundamentalist approach to the creation story?

They believe that the creation story (as in the bible) it was happened literally - known as creationism, stems from the belief that the Bible is the inspired word of God


How do catholics read the stories of creation?

In a symbolic way, believing that they reveal some important things about nature of the world and humanity


What are the main Jewish beliefs about creation?

1. God is creator and source of all life
2. Each week Jews celebrate sabbath, recalling God made the world in six days and rested on seventh


How many stories of creation do Jews share with Christians?

Two — both in genesis which is also first book of the Torah


What are the different Jewish views on the creation accounts?

Orthodox believe they are real - revealed to Moses by God. Reform believe they’re stories that shouldn’t be taken as historical facts


What are the different Jewish beliefs about science?

Orthodox - difficulty accepting scientific ideas - reject evolution and Big Bang theory
Reform - God started universe through Big Bang and has guided creation of life through evolution


What is the Big Bang theory?

1. Current scientific belief about creation of the world
2. Claims all matter was originally concentrated into a tiny point which expanded (due to massive explosion 13.7bn years ago) into universe and is still expanding
3. Theory has led to people (e.g. Stephen Hawking) doubting existence of God completely
4. Powerful telescopes can detect background radiation left


What is the Catholic view on the Big Bang theory?

1. Happy to accept - theory supports God created universe out of nothing
2. Big Bang theory was put forward by catholic priest - Fr George’s Lemaître
3. Science explains how universe came about, genesis explains why universe began


Is there a conflict between science and religion?

No,only a problem if person interprets bible literally


What is evolution?

1. How life came about
2. Idea organisms gradually change and develop into new species by natural selection
3. Supported by fossil record
4. DNA research shows similarities between species


What does Richard Dawkins believe?

1. Modern supporter of evolution
2. Is an atheist, believes evolution disproves God and belief humans have souls
3. Body is survival machine for its genes - no other purpose
4. Humans are a genetic mutation and advanced animals


What is the Catholic view of evolution?

1. Some do not accept - attack on faith
2. Pope JP 2 said there is no conflict between evolution and Christian faith
3. Important to catholics that god created with purpose - don’t care how


What is the sanctity of life?

1. Life should be cared for
2. Creation of humans is unlike everything else because they were made in a unique way and in image of God - imago dei
3. Catholic Church teaches all life is sacred and everyone has a right to life which should be protected and valued at every stage


What important messages were in st Catherine of Siena’s writing?

1. Humans come from God - in the same way children come from their parents
2. Love - God creates out of love


What are the Jewish beliefs in the sanctity of life?

1. God is creator, he alone takes and gives life
2. Genesis teaches humans are created in image of God and life is precious
3. In Tenakh, there are references to a relationship with God before birth
4. Ten Commandments, given to Moses forbid taking of a life


What does the Catholic Church believe about abortion?

1. Against in all circumstances
2. Teaches life begins at conception
3. God who gives life at conception and is the start of human relationship with God
4. Seen as murder, against one of Ten Commandments - “do not murder”
5. Church would encourage adoption
6. Believe in principle/doctrine of double effect


What are other Christian views on abortion? (Different from mainstream)

1. If pregnancy is result of rape, abortion may be best of two evils
2. Should be allowed if pregnancy is dangerous to woman’s health
3. If child is likely to be severely disabled it may affect its quality of life, may be best option


What are the humanist views on abortion?

1. Not one single view - they view happiness above all
2. Look at situation and evidence
3. Generally would take a pro-choice stance to prevent illegal abortions - campaigned in the 1960s
4. Abortion is often most morally acceptable choice to make


Who is Peter Singer and what does he believe?

1. He is a humanist with controversial views on abortion and sanctity of life
2. Argues that all human life has value but not equal value e.g.embryos and newborn babies have limited quality
3. Morally acceptable to take the lives of ‘non-human persons’ if it brings less suffering and greater happiness
4. Also applies to euthanasia - acceptable to take the life of a brain dead person


What is the Catholic response to Peter Singer’s views?

1. Humans remain a person whether conscious or not, asleep, in a coma or haven’t been born


What happened on day 1 of creation?

God created light and separated it from the darkness. God named the light ‘day and the darkness ‘light’


What happened on day 2 of creation?

God created the sky. God used the sky to divide the water and cover the earth into two halves


What happened on day 3 of creation?

God created dry land. The water he called ‘seas’ and the ground ‘land’


What happens on day 4 of creation?

God created the sun, moon and stars to light up the sky, govern night and day and mark the passing of time


What happened on day 5 of creation?

God created all the species of animals that live on the earth


What happened on day 6 of creation?

God created the human beings and put them in charge of everything on the earth that had been created


What happened on day 7 of creation?

God rested, blessed the seventh day and made it holy. The universe was complete


What does the first account of creation tell us? (Days 1-7)

God is : omnipotent, transcendent and eternal


What happened in the second account of creation?

1. God created Adam out of dust and breathes life into him
2. God provides him everything he needs in the Garden of Eden, but told him not to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of food and evil
3. God creates all creatures - Adam names them, none suitable to be his partner
4. God puts Adam to sleep and creates Eve from his rib
5. Their lives were perfect until they disobeyed him, banished from Garden of Eden forever


What does the second account of creation tell us?

God is : omnibenevolent and immanent


What are the catholic beliefs about the nature of human beings and their relationship with creation?

1. Sanctity of life - God personally creates Adam and Eve - from dust and rib
2. Image of God - humans were created imago dei - “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them”
3. Stewards of God’s creation - God commands humans have authority over nature and a responsibility to take care of it


What is the importance of preserving the planet and caring the environment for Catholics?

1. Catholics are stewards - God put us in charge of the world so we must take care of it
2. Two greatest commandments are : love their neighbour and love God - this includes people who are affected by climate change


What are the humanist attitudes to creation and stewardship?

1. Agree we have to look after the planet
2. Need to be stewards of the world out of concern for human beings and animals, not because we were commanded


What types of writing does the Old Testament deal with?

1. The laws (Torah)
2. History
3. Wisdom
4. Prophets


What are the laws in the Old Testament?

The first five books of the Bible deal with how Jewish people became chosen race and how God taught them how to live.
The books tell : creation, lives of patriarchs (e.g. Abraham), also teach about Moses and laws given to people of Israel, including ten commandments


What is the history in the Old Testament?

Twelve historical books in Bible. Books show how God guided his people even though they weren’t always ready to listen


What is the wisdom in the Old Testament?

Psalms is prayer book of Jewish people. Also books of religious and moral teaching, e.g. book of proverbs


What are the prophets in the Old Testament?

From time to time, God sent inspired figures to challenge the Jews to remain faithful to God


What four types of writing is the New Testament divided into?

The gospels, the acts of the apostles, the letters and the book of revelation


What are the Gospels in the New Testament?

Matthew, Mark, Luke and John - most important books of Bible for all Christians as they tell Jesus’ story. Word gospel means good news


What are the acts of the apostles in the New Testament?

Sequel to Luke’s gospel. Tells the story of the early church, after Jesus’ resurrection


What are the letters in the New Testament?

Written mainly by Paul, also by Peter, James, John and Jude. They were Christian leaders giving advice how to put Jesus’ teaching into practice and explaining the meaning of being a Christian


What is the book of revelation in the New Testament?

Last book in the Bible, dealing with John’s vision of heaven and the defeat of evil


What rules must a book follow if it is accepted into the New Testament?

1. Has to be accepted by all Christians
2. Work had to go back to the apostles
3. Had to have an early date
4. Had to agree with other presentations of Christian beliefs


What are the different Christian views on Genesis?

Some believe the Bible is the literal word of God.


What is Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam?

In the Sistine chapel - Vatican, Rome, where the cardinals vote for a new pope, was painted by Michelangelo between 1508-1512.


What does Adam in Michelangelo’s creation of Adam symbolise?

1. Adam resembles God
2. Adam mirrors pose of God
3. Adam is perfect human
This means :
1. Humans were created by God
2. God created a perfect world
3. Humans made in image and likeness of God


What does God symbolise in Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam

1. God presented as dynamic, hard at work and reaches out to Adam
2. God older than Adam, yet strong and powerful
This means:
1. Belief God is eternal and all powerful
2. Difference in age signifies parent child relationship, God is father of all creation


What does the hand symbolise in Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam?

1. Adam and God reaching out to touch each other’s fingertips
This means:
1. Represents spark of life given to all humans - human life is sacred and a gift


What does the cloud symbolise in Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam?

1. God on cloud carried by angels, contrast to Adam on earth
2. Cloud in shape of brain - God is source of all knowledge and wisdom
3. Cloud represents womb because of red background, green cloth is umbilical chord
This means:
1. Shows greatness and transcendence of God
2. God is omniscient
3. God gives all life, same way womb gives life to a child


What is the tree of life?

A mosaic that can be found in the apse of the Church of San Clemente in Rome. It dates to the twelfth century


What does the cross and tree symbolise? (Tree of life)

1. Apostles appear as doves surrounding doves - doves are symbol of peace and sign of Holy Spirit filling earth on Pentecost
2. Base of cross is tree, considered to be tree of life
3. Cross as symbol of death of Christ to absolve humanity of their sins
4. Some may see cross as being tree of life - cross emerges out of tree and is wrapped with vines
5. Tree is reminder of tree of knowledge of good and evil - GofE


What is Chi-Rho? (Tree of life)

Symbol looks like letters X and P - first two letters of word Christ in Greek. Very early symbol of Christianity and can be viewed as first Christian cross


What is the alpha and omega? (Tree of life)

First and last letters of Greek alphabet. Reminds that God is beginning and end of all things. In book of revelation, God speaks of himself as the alpha and omega and from early Christian times it was also used to refer to Jesus. Reminded Jesus is eternal


What does the lamb symbolise? (Tree of life)

1. Symbol of sacrifice, in Passover lambs blood was on doors of Israelites
2. Jesus described as ‘lamb of God’, death on cross saved humanity
3. Twelve lambs are the apostles, they lived a sacrificial life


What are the four evangelists? (Tree of life)

1. Image for Matthew is a man, Matthew is gospel of Christ’s humanity, his humbleness and humility and highlighted
2. Image for Mark is winged lion, signifies leadership and royalty and seen as symbol for Christ as king
3. Image for Luke is winged ox, ox was used in sacrifice in temple. Reminder of priestly character of Jesus and sacrificial death
4. Image for John is flying eagle, eagle is of the sky, this book is unlike the three other gospels


What is the definition of creation ex nihilo?

Creation out of nothing. Before God created the universe, nothing existed. Only God can create out of nothing


What is the definition of evolution?

The process of mutation and natural selection which leads to changes in species over time to suit particular environments


What is the definition of imago dei?

In the image of God. The belief that human beings are uniquely a reflection of God’s personhood. Unlike the other animals, human beings are rational, free and moral


What is the definition of inspiration?

What is the definition of


What is the definition of inspiration?

‘God-breathed’ the belief that the spirit of God guides and individual to act or write what is good or true


What is the definition of omnipotence?

The belief that God is all powerful


What is the definition of revelation?

The word used to describe all of the ways in which God makes himself known to human beings? Christians believe that God does this finally and fully in the person of Jesus Christ


What is the definition of stewardship?

The duty to care for creation responsibly, as stewards rather than consumers, and to protect it for future generations


What is the definition of transcendence?

Existing outside of space and time. God exists in a way that makes him nothing like anything also that exists: above and beyond creation