God, Causality, and Petitionary Prayer

Faith and Philosophy 31 (1):24-45 (2014)
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Abstract

Many maintain that petitionary prayer is pointless. I argue that the theist can defend petitionary prayer by giving a general account of how divine and creaturely causation can be compatible and complementary, based on the claim that the goodness of something depends on its cause. I use Thomas Aquinas’s metaphysical framework to give an account that explains why a world with creaturely causation better reflects God’s goodness than a world in which God brought all things about immediately. In such a world, prayer could allow us to cause good things in a distinctive way: by asking God for them.

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Author's Profile

Caleb Cohoe
Metropolitan State University of Denver

References found in this work

Petitionary Prayer.Eleonore Stump - 1979 - American Philosophical Quarterly 16 (2):81-91.
Forgiveness.Paul M. Hughes - 1975 - Analysis.
Petitionary prayer.Eleonore Stump - 1984 - In J. Houston (ed.), American Philosophical Quarterly. Handsel Press. pp. 81 - 91.
Petitionary prayer.Scott A. Davison - 2008 - In Thomas P. Flint & Michael Rea (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophical Theology. Oxford University Press.
Forgiveness.Martin Hughes - 1975 - Analysis 35 (4):113-117.

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