How reformed is reformed epistemology? Alvin Plantinga and Calvin's ‘sensus divinitatis’

Religious Studies 33 (4):419-431 (1997)
Abstract
In his recent two volumes on epistemology, Alvin Plantinga surveys contemporary theories of knowledge thoroughly, and carefully defends an externalist epistemology. He promises that in a third volume, Warranted Christian Belief, he will present John Calvin's sensus divinitatis as an epistemic module akin to sense perception, a priori knowledge, induction, testimony and other epistemic modules. Plantinga defines the sensus divinitatis as a ‘many sided disposition to accept belief in God (or propositions that immediately and obviously entail the existence of God) in a variety of circumstances’. Like other epistemic modules, it produces beliefs in an appropriate cognitive environment, aims at the production of true beliefs, and generates beliefs which have a high statistical probability of being true.
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