Faith and Philosophy 25 (3):322-328 (2008)

Ted Poston
University of Alabama
Ted Sider’s paper “Hell and Vagueness” challenges a certain conception of Hell by arguing that it is inconsistent with God’s justice. Sider’s inconsistencyargument works only when supplemented by additional premises. Key to Sider’s case is a premise that the properties upon which eternal destinies superveneare “a smear,” i.e., they are distributed continuously among individuals in the world. We question this premise and provide reasons to doubt it. The doubts come from two sources. The first is based on evidential considerations borrowed from skeptical theism. A related but separate consideration is that supposing it would be an insurmountable problem for God to make just (and therefore non-arbitrary) distinctions in morally smeared world, God thereby has sufficient motivation not to actualize such worlds. Yet God also clearly has motivation only to actualize some member of the subset of non-smeared worlds which don’t appear non-smeared. For if it was obvious who was morally fit for Heaven and who wasn’t, a new arena of great injustice is opened up. The result is that if there is a God, then he has the motivation and the ability to actualize from just that set of worlds which are not smeared but which are indiscernible from smeared worlds
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy and Religion
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 0739-7046
DOI 10.5840/faithphil200825331
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,636
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Eschatological Cutoffs.Joseph Corabi - 2011 - Faith and Philosophy 28 (4):385-396.
What’s Personhood Got to Do with It?Hrishikesh Joshi - 2020 - Philosophia 48 (2):557-571.
How Problematic is an Unpopulated Hell?Alex R. Gillham - 2020 - Forum Philosophicum: International Journal for Philosophy 25 (1):107-121.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Eschatological Cutoffs.Joseph Corabi - 2011 - Faith and Philosophy 28 (4):385-396.
Hell and Vagueness.Theodore Sider - 2002 - Faith and Philosophy 19 (1):58--68.
A Craigian Theodicy of Hell.Charles Seymour - 2000 - Faith and Philosophy 17 (1):103-115.
Why God Lied to Me: Salvationist Theism and Justice.Lee Basham - 2002 - Journal of Religious Ethics 30 (2):231 - 249.
Hell and the Goodness of God.Wilko van Holten - 1999 - Religious Studies 35 (1):37 - 55.
On Choosing Hell.Charles Seymour - 1997 - Religious Studies 33 (3):249-266.


Added to PP index

Total views
149 ( #73,925 of 2,462,269 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #223,271 of 2,462,269 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes