•  195
    Necessity, control, and the divine command theory
    Sophia 44 (1): 53-75. 2005.
    The simplest Divine Command Theory is one which identifies rightness with being commanded or willed by God. Two clear and appealing arguments for this theory turn on the idea that laws require a lawgiver, and the idea that God is sovereign or omnipotent. Critical examination of these arguments reveals some fundamental principles at odds with the Divine Command Theory, and yields some more penetrating versions of traditional objections to that theory.
  •  115
    Three roads to open theism
    Faith and Philosophy 24 (1): 28-51. 2007.
    Open theists agree that God lacks what is normally called “comprehensive” foreknowledge, but why believe this? Open theists answer in three ways, which I call the narrow road, the wide road, and the shortcut to open theism. Here I argue that (1) the narrow road faces a difficulty concerning the doctrine of divine omniscience which doesn’t arise for the wide road, (2) the wide road is well-motivated and appealing, given certain philosophical commitments, (3) the shortcut is too simple to work, an…Read more
  •  70
    Constitution Trinitarianism: An Appraisal
    Philosophy and Theology 25 (1): 129-162. 2013.
    In recent work, philosophical theologians Michael Rea and Jeffrey Brower have formulated a precise way of understanding the doctrine of the Trinity along the lines of a contemporary constitution theory of material objects. Here I explain the theological and philosophical thinking behind their proposal, and give seven objections to it. Stepping back to consider methodology, I distinguish several goals a Trinity theory may aim at, and argue that the theory at hand achieves some but not others. Mos…Read more
  •  69
    Divine deception, identity, and Social Trinitarianism
    Religious Studies 40 (3): 269-287. 2004.
    After laying out the claims and motivations of Social Trinitarianism, I develop three new arguments against it. According to the first two, if Social Trinitarianism were true, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit would have engaged in wrongful deception via both Old and New Testament revelation. I briefly consider the strength of the arguments and some possible replies to them, concluding that they constitute good reasons to deny that version of Trinitarian doctrine. According to the final argument,…Read more
  •  55
    On positive mysterianism
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 69 (3): 205-226. 2011.
    Religious believers react in one of four ways to apparent contradictions among their beliefs: Redirection, Resistance, Restraint, or Resolution. This paper evaluates positive mysterian Resistance, the view that believers may rationally believe and know apparently contradictory religious doctrines. After locating this theory by comparing and contrasting it with others, I explore the best developed version of it, that of James Anderson’s Paradox in Christian Theology. I argue that it faces steep e…Read more
  •  55
    The unfinished business of trinitarian theorizing
    Religious Studies 39 (2): 165-183. 2003.
    In recent years, many resourceful thinkers have brought a new clarity to the issues surrounding the doctrine of the Trinity. Two incompatible families of Trinitarian doctrine have been clearly distinguished: Social Trinitarianism and Latin Trinitarianism. I argue here that no theory in either camp has yet evaded the triune pitfalls of inconsistency, unintelligibility, and poor fit with the Bible. These two main approaches appear to be hopeless, and I argue that appeals to ‘mystery’ are no way to…Read more
  •  50
    Tertullian the Unitarian
    European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 8 (3): 179. 2016.
    Tertullian is often celebrated as an early trinitarian, or at least a near- trinitarian, proto-trinitarian, or trinitarian with unfortunate ”subordinationist’ tendencies. In this paper I shall show that Tertullian was a unitarian, and not at all a trinitarian.
  •  46
    Divine deception and monotheism: a reply to Hasker
    Religious Studies 47 (1): 109-115. 2011.
    In two recent pieces William Hasker argues that my arguments against Social Trinitarianism fail. I argue here that he hasn't successfully refuted or rebutted them, and that his response to the quaternity problem sacrifices monotheism.
  •  32
    Religious Diversity, Theories of
    Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2015.
    Theories of Religious Diversity Religious diversity is the fact that there are significant differences in religious belief and practice. It has always been recognized by people outside the smallest and most isolated communities. But since early modern times, increasing information from travel, publishing, and emigration have forced thoughtful people to reflect more deeply on religious … Continue reading Religious Diversity, Theories of →.
  •  29
    Jesus as an exemplar of faith in the New Testament
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 81 (1-2): 171-191. 2017.
    Roman Catholic theologians long denied that Jesus had faith in God, and Jesus having faith in God seems in conflict with traditional claims that Jesus is fully divine. What the New Testament means by “faith” is explored, and in light of this we consider arguments from orthodox Incarnation theory to the conclusion that Jesus did not have and could not have had faith in God. Relevantly, the New Testament clearly asserts in five ways that Jesus had faith in God. This exposes problems for traditiona…Read more
  •  23
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2010.
  •  21
    Hasker's Quests for a Viable Social Theory
    Faith and Philosophy 30 (2): 171-187. 2013.
    In a series of papers, William Hasker, in conversation with important recent work in philosophical theology, has carefully articulated and argued for a version of “social” trinitarianism. I argue that this theory should be rejected because it is not consistently monotheistic.
  •  20
    12 Reid's Philosophy of Religion
    In Terence Cuneo Rene van Woudenberg (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Thomas Reid, Cambridge University Press. pp. 289. 2004.
  •  11
    Divine deception and monotheism: A reply to Hasker: Dale Tuggy
    Religious Studies 47 (1): 109-115. 2011.
    In two recent pieces William Hasker argues that my arguments against Social Trinitarianism fail. I argue here that he hasn't successfully refuted or rebutted them, and that his response to the quaternity problem sacrifices monotheism
  •  8
    Some Objections to Ward’s Trinitarian Theology
    Philosophia Christi 18 (2): 363-373. 2016.
  •  8
    Dormant Dispositions, Agent Value, and the Trinity
    Journal of Analytic Theology 7 (1): 142-155. 2019.
    In this paper we argue that the moral value of an agent is determined solely by their dispositions to act intentionally and freely. We then put this conclusion to work. It resolves a putative moral paradox first posed by Saul Smilansky, and it undermines a prominent line of argument for a variety of Trinitarian theology. Finally, we derive our conclusion about the moral worth of agents not only from our initial series of thought experiments, but also from Abrahamic theism itself. This means that…Read more
  •  6
    No Title available: Book reviews (review)
    Religious Studies 45 (2): 232-237. 2009.
  •  5
    On Counting Gods
    TheoLogica: An International Journal for Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology 1 (1): 188-213. 2017.
  • Agent Causation
    Dissertation, Brown University. 2000.
    After laying out five criteria for a successful libertarian account of free will in chapter 1, in chapter 2 I examine the four best recent alternatives to traditional agent causation theories, by Carl Ginet, Stewart Goetz, Randolph Clarke, and Robert Kane. I find that each of these proposals clearly fails on its own terms. In addition, I highlight other problems they face. First, all are theories of free action done for a reason, and not free action simpliciter. It seems best to account for the …Read more
  • I summarize and criticize Edward Wierenga’s "Trinity and Polytheism". The account suffers from both methodological and substantial problems. It shares the former with much recent work--unprincipled choice of orthodox constraints, theoretical defeatism, lack of positive aims, infidelity to its chosen historical source, and being constrained by a nonauthoritative creed. Substantial problems include poor fit with the Bible, a crucial ambiguity concerning God, and a problematic distinction between ’…Read more
  • Thomas Reid on causation
    Reid Studies 3 3-27. 2000.