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1. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Paul Weithman Does Liberal Egalitarianism Depend on a Theology?
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John Rawls’s argument for egalitarianism famously depends on his rejection of desert. In The Theology of Liberalism, Eric Nelson contends that Rawls’s treatment of desert depends on anti-Pelagian commitments he first endorsed in his undergraduate thesis and tacitly continued to hold. He also contends that a broad range of liberal arguments for economic egalitarianism fail because they rest on an incoherent conception of human agency. The failure becomes evident, Nelson says, when we see that proponents of those arguments unknow­ingly assume the anti-Pelagianism on which Rawls relied. Nelson concludes that egalitarianism must be given a different political and theoretic basis than Rawls and his followers have provided. I argue that Nelson misreads Rawls and that egalitarians can avoid inconsistency without staking a theological claim they want to avoid.
2. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Fabio Lampert, John William Waldrop Grim Variations
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Patrick Grim advances arguments meant to show that the doctrine of divine omniscience—the classical doctrine according to which God knows all truths—is false. We here focus on two such arguments: the set theoretic argument and the semantic argument. These arguments due to Grim run parallel to, respectively, familiar paradoxes in set theory and naive truth theory. It is beyond the purview of this article to adjudicate whether or not these are successful arguments against the classical doctrine of omniscience. What we are here interested in is a way in which these arguments can be generalized. In particular, we show how generalizations of these arguments can target, explicitly, alternatives to the classical doctrine of omniscience, including what we here call restricted omniscience and open future open theism. As a corollary, considerations of Grim-style arguments do not support these alternatives to the classical doctrine of omniscience over the classical doctrine. We conclude that what is paradoxical is not the classical doctrine of omniscience just as such; rather, what is paradoxical is a core commitment shared by the classical doctrine and its more modest alternatives, namely, the thesis that God is a perfectly logical reasoner.
3. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Mohammad Saleh Zarepour On the Varieties of Finitism
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Defenders of the Kalām Cosmological Argument appeal to the so-called Hilbert’s Hotel Argument to establish the finitude of the past based on the impossibility of actual infinites. Some of their opponents argue that this proves too much because if the universe cannot be beginningless due to the impossibility of actual infinites, then, for the same reason, it cannot be endless either. Discussing four different senses of the existence of an actual infinite, I criticize both sides of the debate by showing, on the one hand, that the Hilbert’s Hotel Argument is not powerful enough to rule out the possibility of the infinitude of the past and, on the other hand, that the soundness of the argument for the finitude of the past from the impossibility of actual infinites does not establish the soundness of the parallel argument for the finitude of the future.
4. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
P. Roger Turner, Jordan Wessling W. Matthews Grant on Human Free Will, and Divine Universal Causation
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In recent work, W. Matthews Grant challenges the common assumption that if humans have libertarian free will, and the moral responsibility it affords, then it is impossible for God to cause what humans freely do. He does this by offering a “non-competitivist” model that he calls the “Dual Sources” account of divine and human causation. Although we find Grant’s Dual Sources model to be the most compelling of models on offer for non-competitivism, we argue that it fails to circumvent a theological version of Peter van Inwagen’s direct argument for incompatibilism. In the paper, we motivate and deploy a theological take on the direct argument, and we contend that this theological rendition of the direct argument effectively dismantles Grant’s Dual Sources account of non-competitivism.
5. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Dustin Crummett Wrongful Procreation, Factory Farming, and the Afterlife
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Sometimes, I can affect whether an individual is created, but not how their life goes if they’re created. If their life will be bad enough, I apparently wrong them by allowing their creation. But sometimes, popular religious views imply that the created individual is guaranteed to have an infinitely good existence on balance. Since, I argue, I don’t wrong someone by allowing their creation when it’s infinitely good for them on balance, these views apparently have unacceptable implications for procreation ethics. After surveying various responses, I tentatively suggest that the best solution may involve adopting an unusual metaphysics of procreation.
6. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Noël Blas Saenz Still Against Divine Truthmaker Simplicity
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In a 2014 paper in this journal, I put forward two objections to a version of divine simplicity I call “Divine Truthmaker Simplicity.” James Beebe and Timothy Pawl have come to Divine Truthmaker Simplicity’s defense. In this paper, I respond to Beebe and Pawl, consider an overlooked way of defending Divine Truthmaker Simplicity, and conclude by outlining an alternative account of God’s simplicity.
book reviews
7. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Sarah Coakley Nicholas Wolterstorff: Acting Liturgically: Philosophical Reflections On Religious Practice
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8. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
David P. Hunt Heath White: Fate And Free Will: A Defense Of Theological Determinism
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9. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Cheryl Kayahara-Bass Kenneth W. Kemp: The War That Never Was: Evolution And Christian Theology
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10. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
J. Aaron Simmons David Newheiser: Hope In A Secular Age: Deconstruction, Negative Theology, And The Future Of Faith
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11. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Christina Van Dyke Edward Howells and Mark A. McIntosh, ed.: The Oxford Handbook Of Mystical Theology
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12. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 3
Christopher Woznicki William Lane Craig: Atonement And The Death Of Christ: An Exegetical, Historical, And Philosophical Exploration
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articles
13. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Lucy Sheaf Leibniz on Divine Love
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This paper considers two objections which can be levelled against Leibniz’s account of divine love. The first is that he cannot allow that divine love is gracious because he is committed to the view that love is properly proportioned to the perfection perceived in the beloved; the second is that God is cruel to those who are damned and so cannot be said to love all. I argue that Leibniz has the resources to rebut—or at least blunt—each of these objections.
14. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Kenneth L. Pearce God’s Impossible Options
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According to Michael Almeida, reflections on free will and possibility can be used to show that the existence of an Anselmian God is compatible with the existence of evil. These arguments depend on the assumption that an agent can be free with respect to an action only if it is possible that that agent performs that action. Although this principle enjoys some intuitive support, I argue that Anselmianism undermines these intuitions by introducing impossible options. If Anselmianism is true, I argue, then both God and creatures may be free to do the impossible.
15. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Brian Scott Ballard Christianity and the Life Story
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Should we understand our lives as stories? Narrativism answers Yes, a view that has recently been the subject of vigorous debate. But what should Christian philosophers make of narrativism? In this essay, I argue that, in fact, narrativism is a commitment of Christian teaching. I argue that there are practices which Christians have decisive reasons to engage in, which require us to see our lives as narratives, practices such as confession and thanksgiving.
16. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Bruce Langtry Evaluating a New Logical Argument From Evil
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J. L. Schellenberg, in “A New Logical Problem of Evil,” argues that (if God exists) God has, of necessity, a disappreciation of evil, operating at a metalevel in such a way as to give God a non-defeasible reason to rule out actualizing a world containing evil. He also argues that since God’s motive in creating the world is to share with finite beings the good that God experiences prior to creation, which is good without evil, it follows that God will create a world that contains no evil. I investigate in detail the foregoing lines of argument and provide grounds for rejecting them.
17. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Mark Boespflug Thomistic Faith Naturalized? The Epistemic Significance of Aquinas’s Appeal to Doxastic Instinct
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Aquinas’s conception of faith has been taken to involve believing in a way that is expressly out of keeping with the evidence. Rather than being produced by evidence, the confidence involved in faith is a product of the will’s decision. This causes Aquinas’s conception of faith to look flagrantly irrational. Herein, I offer an interpretation of Aquinas’s position on faith that has not been previously proposed. I point out that Aquinas responds to the threat of faith’s irrationality by explicitly maintaining that one may reasonably believe by faith because of an instinct to believe. I go on to point out other instances in which instincts amount to legitimate epistemic grounds for Aquinas. Given that this dimension of Aquinas’s thought is not well developed, I close by introducing some extensions of it in the work of John Henry Newman as well as points of contrast.
book reviews
18. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Brian Leftow Perfect Being Attacked! Jeff Speaks’s The Greatest Possible Being
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Jeff Speaks’s The Greatest Possible Being criticizes several sorts of perfect being theology. I show that his main discussions target what are really idealizations of actual perfect-being projects. I then focus on whether Speaks’s idealizations match up with the real historical article. I argue that, in one key respect, they do not and that it would be uncharitable to think that one of them does. If the idealizations do not represent what perfect being thinkers have actually been doing, a question arises about how much Speaks’s critique should worry those pursuing projects modelled on real historical perfect being theology.
19. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
J.L.A. Donohue Barbara H. Fried: Facing Up to Scarcity: The Logic and Limits of Nonconsequentialist Thought
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20. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 38 > Issue: 2
Johannes Grössl Wm. Curtis Holtzen: The God Who Trusts: A Relational Theology of Divine Faith, Hope, and Love
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