Religious Studies 13 (4):477-483 (1977)

In a recent paper Anthony Flew gives an argument which can be outlined as follows: 1. Any attempt to give a ‘free will defence’ must be based either on a compatibilist notion of free will or a libertarian, incompatibilist, notion of free will. 2. A free will defence based on a compatibilist notion of free will must fail, for on a compatibilist view of free will, God could make creatures who were free but never chose evil. 3. A free will defence based on a libertarian notion of free will might have other difficulties, but on a libertarian view of free will God could not both leave men free and bring it about that they never chose evil. 4. But a free will defence based on an incompatibilist, libertarian notion of free will can be rejected, since: It is not clear that the ordinary use of such key terms as ‘action’ and ‘choice’ carry any implications of libertarian free will. If such terms did carry the implication of libertarian free will it becomes hard to see how anyone could be in a position to know that a choice had been made or an action performed. The possession of libertarian free will by created beings seems to be incompatible with the essential theistic doctrine that all created beings are always utterly dependent on God as their sustaining cause. 5. Therefore the free will defence fails
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DOI 10.1017/S0034412500010362
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On Flew’s Compatibilism and His Objections to Theistic Libertarianism.Hakan Gundogdu - 2015 - Kaygı Uludağ University Faculty of Arts and Sciences Journal of Philosophy 25:115-142.

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