University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Department of Philosophy
PhD, 1974
Rochester, New York, United States of America
Areas of Specialization
Philosophy of Religion
Areas of Interest
  •  535
    The Fall and Hypertime, by Hud Hudson (review)
    Faith and Philosophy 34 (3): 370-377. 2017.
  •  417
    I propose some arguments suggested by Descartes' text for the conclusion that we are not identical to our bodies. I suggest that a natural extension of those arguments leads to Plantinga's Replacement Argument. I conclude that even if such an argument is plausible, its conclusion does not establish the further claim that we can exist without a body.
  •  307
  •  280
    The Ontological Argument and Objects of Thought
    Philosophic Exchange 42 (1): 82-103. 2011.
    Is there anything new to be said about Anselm's ontological argument? Recent work by Lynne Baker and Gareth Matthews raises some interesting and important questions about the argument. First, Anselm's argument is set in the context of a prayer to God, whose existence Anselm seeks to prove. Is that peculiar or paradoxical? Does it imply that Anselm's prayer is insincere? Baker and Matthews have offered a novel interpretation of Anselm's argument, designed to solve a crucial problem with it. Does …Read more
  •  210
    Prophecy, freedom, and the necessity of the past
    Philosophical Perspectives 5 425-445. 1991.
    One of the strongest arguments for the incompatibility of divine foreknowledge and human free action appeals to the apparent fixity or necessity of the past. Two leading responses to the argument—Ockhamism, which denies a premiss of the argument, and the so-called “eternity solution”, which holds that strictly speaking God does not have foreknowledge—have both come under attack on similar grounds. Neither response, it is alleged, is adequate to the case of divine prophecy. In this paper I sha…Read more
  •  170
    Trinity and Polytheism
    Faith and Philosophy 21 (3): 281-294. 2004.
    This paper develops an interpretation of the doctrine of the Trinity, drawn from Augustine and the Athanasian Creed. Such a doctrine includes divinity claims (the persons are divine), diversity claims (the persons are distinct), and a uniqueness claim (there is only one God). I propose and defend an interpretation of these theses according to which they are neither logically incompatible nor do they do entail that there are three (or four) gods
  •  131
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2019.
  •  129
    Augustinian perfect being theology and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 69 (2): 139-151. 2011.
    All of the ingredients for what has become known as Anselmian perfect being theology were present already in the thought of St. Augustine. This paper develops that thesis by calling attention to various claims Augustine makes. It then asks whether there are principled reasons for determining which properties the greatest possible being has and whether an account of what contributes to greatness can settle the question whether the greatest possible being is the same as the God of Abraham, Isaac, …Read more
  •  129
    Several debates in contemporary metaphysics provoke us to ask what an event is. One theory, Pioneered by chisholm, Develops the analogy between the occurrence of events and the truth of corresponding propositions. I call these propositional analyses. It is unclear whether their adherents wish to jettison our event-Concepts, And replace them with concepts from another category, Such as semantics. The other theory of what events are that I scrutinize, Namely kim's and goldman's property-Exemplific…Read more
  •  110
    Omnipotence defined
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 43 (3): 363-375. 1983.
  •  108
    The Nature of God explores a perennial problem in the philosophy of religion.
  •  106
  •  96
    Perfect goodness and divine freedom
    Philosophical Books 48 (3): 207-216. 2007.
  •  94
    In Thomas P. Flint & Michael C. Rea (eds.), The Oxford handbook of philosophical theology, Oxford University Press. 2008.
    Omniscience is the divine attribute of possessing complete or unlimited knowledge. This article examines motivations for taking such a property to be a divine attribute, attempts to define or analyse omniscience, possible limitations on the extent of divine knowledge, and, finally, objections either to the coherence of the concept or to its compatibility with other divine attributes or with widely accepted claims.
  •  93
    Anselm on Omnipresence
    New Scholasticism 62 (1): 30-41. 1988.
  •  92
    The Freedom of God
    Faith and Philosophy 19 (4): 425-436. 2002.
  •  64
    Book reviews (review)
    with Edward L. Schoen, William Hasker, Alan R. Drengson, Frank B. Dilley, Frank J. Hoffman, and John Elrod
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 34 (2): 115-129. 1993.
  •  59
    Identity Conditions and Events
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 11 (1). 1981.
    According to Myles Brand, ‘[t]he key to advocating a particularist account of events -or any account of events - is to provide adequate identity conditions’. He thinks that the function of an identity condition is ‘to specify the nature of’ events.To state an identity condition for events is to provide a way to complete the formula: The mere fact that a proposed completion of is true does not imply that it is an informative identity condition for events or that it plays any role in specifying th…Read more
  •  59
    Intrinsic Maxima and Omnibenevolence
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 10 (1). 1979.
  •  50
    The Openness of God (review)
    Faith and Philosophy 14 (2): 248-252. 1997.
  •  48
    Confrontations with the Reaper (review)
    Teaching Philosophy 17 (1): 78-81. 1994.
  •  46
    Alvin Plantinga (review)
    Faith and Philosophy 5 (2): 214-219. 1988.
  •  46
    Logic and the Nature of God (review)
    Faith and Philosophy 3 (1): 88-91. 1986.
  •  42
    The Skepticism of Skeptical Theism
    Journal of Philosophical Theological Research 21 (3): 27-42. 2019.
    Skeptical theism is a type of reply to arguments from evil against God’s existence. The skeptical theist declines to accept a premiss of some such argument, professing ignorance, for example, about whether God is justified in permitting certain evils or about the conditional probability that the world contains as much evil as it does, or evils of a particular sort, on the hypothesis that God exists. Skeptical theists are thus not supposed to be skeptical about theism; rather, they are theists wh…Read more
  •  40
    Denotation and Eliminative Materialism
    with Rew A. Godow
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 36 (3). 1976.
  •  39
    The Nature of God explores a perennial problem in the philosophy of religion. Drawing upon developments in philosophy, most notably those in philosophical logic, Edward R. Wierenga examines the traditional divine attributes of omnipotence, omniscience, eternity, timelessness, immutability, and goodness. His philosophically defensible formulations of the nature of God are in accord with the views of classical theists. The author provides an account of each of the divine attributes by stating in c…Read more
  •  37
    Proxy consent and counterfactual wishes
    Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 8 (4): 405-416. 1983.
    I discuss conditions for the validity of proxy consent to treatment on behalf of an incompetent person. I distinguish those incompetents who, when previously competent, expressed an opinion on the treatment in question from those who were never competent or who, though previously competent, never expressed an opinion on the proposed treatment. In the former case valid proxy consent usually requires respecting the stated wishes of the patient. The latter case is more difficult. I consider a widel…Read more
  •  35
    Taking someone's word for it
    Philosophical Studies 34 (2). 1978.