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articles
1. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Daniel M. Johnson How Puzzles of Petitionary Prayer Solve Themselves: Divine Omnirationality, Interest-Relative Explanation, and Answered Prayer
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Some have seen in the divine attribute of omnirationality, identified by Alexander R. Pruss, the promise of a dissolution of the usual puzzles of peti­tionary prayer. Scott Davison has challenged this line of thought with a series of example cases. I will argue that Davison is only partially correct, and that the reasons for this reveal an important new way to approach the puzzles of petitionary prayer. Because explanations are typically interest-relative, there is not one correct account of “answered prayer” but many, corresponding to a variety of reasons to care whether God might answer our prayers. It follows from this that the omnirationality solution can be vindicated and that puz­zles of petitionary prayer that are not dissolved thereby will typically contain within themselves the seeds of their own solutions.
2. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Kenneth L. Pearce Are We Free to Break the Laws of Providence?
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Can I be free to perform an action if God has decided to ensure that I do not choose that action? I show that Molinists and simple foreknowledge theo­rists are committed to answering in the affirmative. This is problematic for their status as theological incompatibilists. I suggest that strategies for pre­serving their theological incompatibilism in light of this result should be based on sourcehood. However, the path is not easy here either, since Leibniz has shown how theological determinists can offer an extremely robust form of sourcehood. Proponents of these views must identify a valuable form of sourcehood their theories allow that Leibniz’s theory doesn’t.
3. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Andrew M. Bailey Magical Thinking
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According to theists, God is an immaterial thinking being. The main question of this article is whether theism supports the view that we too are immaterial thinking beings. I shall argue in the negative. Along the way, I will also explore some implications in the philosophy of mind following from the observation that, on theism, God’s mentality is in a certain respect magical.
4. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Caleb Cohoe Accounting for the Whole: Why Pantheism is on a Metaphysical Par with Complex Theism
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Pantheists are often accused of lacking a sufficient account of the unity of the cosmos and its supposed priority over its many parts. I argue that complex the­ists, those who think that God has ontologically distinct parts or attributes, face the same problems. Current proposals for the metaphysics of complex theism do not offer any greater unity or ontological independence than pantheism, since they are modeled on priority monism. I then discuss whether the for­mal distinction of John Duns Scotus offers a way forward for complex theists. I show that only those classical theists who affirm divine simplicity are better off with respect to aseity and unity than pantheists. Only proponents of divine simplicity can fairly claim to have found a fully independent ultimate being.
5. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Justin Mooney How God Knows Counterfactuals of Freedom
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One problem for Molinism that critics of the view have pressed, and which Molinists have so far done little to address, is that even if there are true coun­terfactuals of freedom, it is puzzling how God could possibly know them. I defuse this worry by sketching a plausible model of the mechanics of middle knowledge which draws on William Alston’s direct acquaintance account of divine knowledge.
6. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Martin Jakobsen Determining the Need for Explanation
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Several theistic arguments are formulated as arguments for the best explana­tion. This article discusses how one can determine that some phenomenon actually needs an explanation. One way to demonstrate that an explanation is needed is by providing one. The proposed explanation ought to either make the occurrence of the phenomenon in question more probable than it occur­ring by chance, or it has to sufficiently increase our understanding of the phe­nomenon. A second way to demonstrate that an explanation is needed is to show that the phenomenon in question both violates our expectations and is particularly noticeable.
book reviews
7. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Michael Bergmann Nathan Ballantyne, Knowing Our Limits
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8. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Andrew W. Arlig Blake Hereth and Kevin Timpe, eds., The Lost Sheep in Philosophy of Religion: New Perspectives on Disability, Gender, Race, and Animals
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9. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Sameer Yadav John H. McClendon III, Black Christology and the Quest for Authenticity: A Philosophical Appraisal
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10. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
John A. Keller Elliot Sober, The Design Argument
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11. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 2
Catherine Nolan Dietrich von Hildebrand with Alice von Hildebrand, Morality and Situation Ethics
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articles
12. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Christopher Hauser On Being Human and Divine: The Coherence of the Incarnation
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According to the doctrine of the Incarnation, one person, Christ, has both the attributes proper to a human being and the attributes proper to God. This claim has given rise to the coherence objection, i.e., the objection that it is impossible for one individual to have both sets of attributes. Several authors have offered responses which rely on the idea that Christ has the relevant human properties in virtue of having a concrete human nature which has those properties. I show why such responses should be rejected and, in light of that, propose an alternative response to the coherence objection.
13. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Chris Tucker Divine Satisficing and the Ethics of the Problem of Evil
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This paper accomplishes three goals. First, it reveals that God’s ethics has a radical satisficing structure: God can choose a good enough suboptimal option even if there is a best option and no countervailing considerations. Second, it resolves the long-standing worry that there is no account of the good enough that is both principled and demanding enough to be good enough. Third, it vindicates the key ethical assumption in the problem of evil without relying on the contested assumption that God’s ethics is our ethics (on steroids).
14. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Micah Lott Moral Duties and Divine Commands: Is Kantian Religion Coherent?
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Kant argues that morality leads to religion, and that religion consists in regarding our moral duties as divine commands. This paper explores a foundational question for Kantian religion: When you think of your duties as divine commands, what exactly are you thinking, and how is that thought consistent with Kant’s own account of the ways that morality is independent from God? I argue that if we assume the Kantian religious person acts out of obedience to God, then her overall outlook will be inconsistent. I then develop an account of regarding duties as divine commands that does not involve acting out of obedience to God. This account, however, faces an objection—that without obedience, one cannot actually be thinking of duties as divine commands. In the final section, I consider this objection and suggest a response.
15. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Bruce Langtry God, Horrors, and Our Deepest Good
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J.L. Schellenberg argues that since God, if God exists, possesses both full knowledge by acquaintance of horrific suffering and also infinite compassion, the occurrence of horrific suffering is metaphysically incompatible with the existence of God. In this paper I begin by raising doubts about Schellenberg’s assumptions about divine knowledge by acquaintance and infinite compassion. I then focus on Schellenberg’s claim that necessarily, if God exists and the deepest good of finite persons is unsurpassably great and can be achieved without horrific suffering, then no instances of horrific suffering bring about an improvement great enough to outweigh their great disvalue. I argue that there is no good reason, all things considered, to believe this claim. Thus Schellenberg’s argument from horrors fails.
16. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Scott M. Williams In Defense of a Latin Social Trinity: A Response to William Hasker
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In “Unity of Action in a Latin Social Model of the Trinity,” I objected to William Hasker’s Social Model of the Trinity (among others) on the grounds that it does not secure the necessary agreement between the divine persons. Further, I developed a Latin Social model of the Trinity. Hasker has responded by defending his Social Model and by raising seven objections against my Latin Social Model. Here I raise a new objection against Hasker on the grounds that it is inconsistent with Conciliar Trinitarianism, and I respond to the seven objections and in so doing further develop the Latin Social Model.
book reviews
17. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Kevin Timpe The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Childhood and Children, edited by Anca Gheaus
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18. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Mary Beth Willard God, Existence, and Fictional Objects: The Case for Meinongian Theism, by John-Mark L. Miravalle
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19. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 37 > Issue: 1
Jc Beall In Defense of Extended Conciliar Christology: A Philosophical Essay, by Timothy Pawl
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articles
20. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 36 > Issue: 4
Joseph Stenberg The All-Happy God
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Is God happy? In the tradition of classical theism, the answer has long been “Yes.” And, just as God is not merely powerful, but all-powerful, so too God is not merely happy, but all-happy or infinitely happy. Far from being empty praise, God’s happiness does important work, in particular, in explaining both human existence and human destiny. This essay is an attempt to give divine happiness the serious philosophical treatment it deserves. It turns out that, as with many divine traits, ascribing all-happiness to God is not without potential problems. I raise and attempt to address what I take to be the most serious problem, which I call “The Subjective Problem of Evil.”