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Animal Theology by David Clough

Updated: Sep 22, 2022

Video from Timeline Theological Videos

"The producer of these videos’ Dr Timothy Hull has also written Faith & modern thought. The modern philosophers for understanding modern theology A jargon -busting , myth -busting introduction. Cascade books WIPE and STOCK Publishers from video introduction.

How we relate to and treat the rest of God's creation matters. Therefore we should have a theology of animals.

Christian Theology and Animal Rights - Andrew Linzey

The Negative Tradition

‘It is not a sin to beat a dog or leave it to starve to Death.’ These are the reported words of the Archbishop of Udine in eastern Italy from a Christmas sermon in 1988. ‘A clog is not a person, it belongs to man’, argued the Archbishop who went on to regret that ‘the law sends to prison a man who kills a pigeon while the murder of an unborn child in its mother’s womb goes unpunished.¹ If, even today, few Christians appear to regard animals and their treatment as an important moral issue, the answer has to be sought in the history and development of doctrine. Christian theology has provided some of the best arguments for not taking animal rights seriously. There are four key arguments.

l. Animals have no mind or reason. It was St Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologiae, inspired in turn by Aristotelian philosophy, who first fully systematised the view that animals were devoid of mental powers : Dumb animals and plants are devoid of the life of reason whereby to set themselves in motion ; they are moved, as it were by another, by a kind of natural impulse, a sign of which is that they are naturally enslaved and accommodated to the uses of others.² This idea that animals have no mental powers, do not act by conscious will, but by ‘nature’ and ‘instinct’, has been persuasive throughout centuries of Christian theology, Men, according to St Thomas, are uniquely rational, an inherent part of being made in the ‘image of God.... from the article: Christian Theology and Animal Rights - Andrew Linzey

The Slaughter of Terrified Beasts: A Biblical Basis for the Humane Treatment of Animals by J.R. Hyland (link) This is an excellent book on animal theology and only 86 pages long.

The Slaughter of Terrified Beasts


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