Philosophy Compass 5 (7):611-623 (2010)
AbstractMost a posteriori arguments against the existence of God take the following form: (1) If God exists, the world would not be like this (where 'this' picks out some feature of the world like the existence of evil, etc.) (2) But the world is like this . (3) Therefore, God does not exist. Skeptical theists are theists who are skeptical of our ability to make judgments of the sort expressed by premise (1). According to skeptical theism, if there were a God, it is likely that he would have reasons for acting that are beyond our ken, and thus we are not justified in making all-things-considered judgments about what the world would be like if there were a God. In particular, the fact that we don't see a good reason for X does not justify the conclusion that there is no good reason for X. 1 Thus, skeptical theism purports to undercut most a posteriori arguments against the existence of God. What follows is an account of the nature of skeptical theism, an application of skeptical theism to both the argument from evil and the argument from divine hiddenness, and a review of the cases for and against skeptical theism.
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Citations of this work
If We Can’t Tell What Theism Predicts, We Can’t Tell Whether God Exists: Skeptical Theism and Bayesian Arguments from Evil.Nevin Climenhaga - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion.
Scepticism about the argument from divine hiddenness.Justin P. Mcbrayer & Philip Swenson - 2012 - Religious Studies 48 (2):129 - 150.
On Preferring God's Non-Existence.Klaas J. Kraay & Chris Dragos - 2013 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 43 (2):157-178.
The moral skepticism objection to skeptical theism.Stephen Maitzen - 2013 - In Justin McBrayer & Daniel Howard-Snyder (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to the Problem of Evil. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 444--457.
References found in this work
The Problem of Evil and Some Varieties of Atheism.William L. Rowe - 1979 - American Philosophical Quarterly 16 (4):335 - 341.
The Humean obstacle to evidential arguments from suffering: On avoiding the evils of “appearance”.Stephen Wykstra - 1984 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 16 (2):73 - 93.