Define Natural & Supernatural Theology According to the Puritans

For the Puritans, natural theology was linked to the creation of Adam in the image of God, and because of this, he was blessed in a natural theology (theolgia naturalis), or knowledge of God both innate and acquired from the handiwork of God around him. Some Puritans theologians debated among themselves whether all knowledge of God before the fall was natural or supernatural. Supernatural theology entails special revelation by God outside of his general revelation of nature. The Puritans agreed on the fact that Adam possessed a natural theology.  There were some Puritans that disagreed whether or not Adam possessed a supernatural theology before the fall, Puritans such as John Owen limited supernatural theology not until after the fall because he maintains that originally revelation was partly supernatural and that this part was intended to increase daily. Thomas Goodwin believed that Adam’s end would have been continual life in the Garden of Eden, because only through Christ could he have acquired eternal life.  John Owen seemed to suggest that both supernatural and natural theology coexisted before the fall, whereas Thomas Goodwin rejected this idea.


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