René Descartes (1596-1650) is probably best known for his Latin philosophical statement, “Cogito ergo sum.” This phrase is best translated into English as “I think, therefore I am.” This proposition provides a strong foundation for one to build further knowledge upon instead of resorting to extreme skepticism about everything. Descartes believed “the very act of doubting one’s own existence served—at minimum—as … Continue reading “I Think, Therefore I Am” — not according to determinists!
An Unfortunate Evaluation of Compatibilism: A Response to CARM.org’s “What is Compatibilism and is it Biblical?”
Abstract: Philosophers and theologians alike are very interested in the view called compatibilism. Recently an article written by Matt Slick of carm.org released an article on this view, but it was unfortunately replete with mistakes. This article is a direct response to his and seeks to clarify what the view is, whether it is biblical, … Continue reading An Unfortunate Evaluation of Compatibilism: A Response to CARM.org’s “What is Compatibilism and is it Biblical?”
Abstract: This is a critical examination of CARM.org’s article “What is Libertarian Free Will and is it Biblical?,” which purports to define libertarian free will and demonstrate that it is not biblical. I conclude that Slick’s own definition is idiosyncratic and based on faulty research. It therefore fails to accurately represent the concept as currently … Continue reading A Biblical Bungle: A Response to CARM.org’s “What is Libertarian Free Will and is it Biblical?”
One thing that has always surprised me is how some Calvinists align themselves with atheists to argue against a common foe: Molinism! That is to say, many Calvinists affirm that God exhaustively causally determines all things. This is not some straw man I am inventing. In his recent essay, notable Calvinist, Matthew J. Hart affirms this … Continue reading A Revised Free Thinking Argument: Two Birds with One Stone
As I reflect on the last twenty years of my life, I’m struck by how much my theological outlook has changed. This is especially the case regarding my view of Divine providence. For sixteen years, I was a theological determinist; that is to say, I believed that God causally determined everything that came to pass, … Continue reading Can We Sensibly Believe in Determinism and Deliberate?
Abstract: Paul Helm, a Calvinist theologian, has contributed an article to Ligonier.org in which he presents two noteworthy objections to Molinism. First, Helm presents an internal critique of Molinism purporting to show that Libertarian Free Will (LFW) undermines God’s providential control over the world. Second, Helm argues that Molinism is incompatible with the doctrine of … Continue reading Paul Helm Misses The Mark on Molinism: A Response to Ligonier.org’s “Molinism 101”
Every time I turn around I find someone else denying that humans have free will. From scientists to philosophers to theologians, it’s the cool new trend. We aren’t actually making free choices. We have been programmed either by God or our DNA to act in a certain way and have no choice but to follow … Continue reading The Price of Denying Free Will
Abstract: In my essay “Does 1 Peter 1:3 Refute Libertarian Free Will?” I defend the thesis that the relevant verse is underdeterminative with respect to whether it teaches Libertarian Free Will (LFW) or Divine Causal Determinism (DCD). One attempt that has been made to resolve this epistemic standoff has been through the employment of Ockham’s … Continue reading Does Ockham’s Razor Preclude Libertarian Interpretations of 1 Peter 1:3?
Calvinism has been one of the most popular theological traditions within the church for half a millennia. This reformed view is the tradition in which I was raised. In fact, I believed it, bought it, and taught it as a minister for over a decade. I was not alone in my pursuit to spread the teachings of … Continue reading Death of a Gunslinger
Recently a friend of mine — a philosophy professor who believes humans possess libertarian free will — posted a question on social media directed to Christians. He asked: “If you had to choose between the two, would you rather be a Calvinist (compatibilist version) or an open theist?” I quickly responded with the following: “The ironic thing … Continue reading Yoda & K-2: Semi-Compatibilism & Responsibility