•  1615
    Free will and the problem of evil
    Religious Studies 40 (4): 437-456. 2004.
    According to the free-will defence, the exercise of free will by creatures is of such value that God is willing to allow the existence of evil which comes from the misuse of free will. A well-known objection holds that the exercise of free will is compatible with determinism and thus, if God exists, God could have predetermined exactly how the will would be exercised; God could even have predetermined that free will would be exercised sinlessly. Thus, it is held, the free-will defence cannot be …Read more
  •  807
    Infinite utility
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 73 (3). 1995.
    Suppose we wish to decide which of a pair of actions has better consequences in a case in which both actions result in infinite utility. Peter Vallentyne and others have proposed that one action has better consequences than a second if there is a time after which the cumulative utility of the first action always outstrips the cumulative utility of the second. I argue against this principle, in particular I show how cases may arise in which up to any point of time action a1 produces more utility …Read more
  •  726
    A Frankfurt Example to End All Frankfurt Examples
    Philosophia 42 (1): 83-93. 2014.
    Frankfurt examples are frequently used in arguments designed to show that agents lacking alternatives, or lacking ‘regulative control’ over their actions, can be morally responsible for what they do. I will maintain that Frankfurt examples can be constructed that undermine those very arguments when applied to actions for which the agent bears fundamental responsibility
  •  653
    Frankfurt Style Examples
    Southwest Philosophy Review 19 (1): 221-229. 2003.
    Frankfurt style examples (FSEs) have played an important role in the development of metaphysical accounts of moral agency. The legitimacy of this approach often requires that FSEs be metaphysically possible. I argue that, given our current knowledge of the nature of decision-making, we have no grounds to accept the metaphysical possibility of many standard FSEs involving a device that can be triggered to bring about a predetermined decision.
  •  563
    On the problem of hell
    Religious Studies 38 (3): 355-362. 2002.
    There is a conception of hell that holds that God punishes some people in a way that brings about endless suffering and unhappiness. An objection to this view holds that such punishment could not be just since it punishes finite sins with infinite suffering. In answer to this objection, it is shown that endless suffering, even intense suffering, is consistent with the suffering being finite. Another objection holds that such punishment is contrary to God's love. A possible response to this objec…Read more
  •  549
    On the weak Kleene scheme in Kripke's theory of truth
    Journal of Symbolic Logic 56 (4): 1452-1468. 1991.
    It is well known that the following features hold of AR + T under the strong Kleene scheme, regardless of the way the language is Gödel numbered: 1. There exist sentences that are neither paradoxical nor grounded. 2. There are 2ℵ0 fixed points. 3. In the minimal fixed point the weakly definable sets (i.e., sets definable as {n∣ A(n) is true in the minimal fixed point where A(x) is a formula of AR + T) are precisely the Π1 1 sets. 4. In the minimal fixed point the totally defined sets (sets weakl…Read more
  •  380
    The Kane-Widerker Objection to Frankfurt Examples
    Philosophia 42 (4): 949-957. 2014.
    I will argue that the Kane-Widerker objection to Frankfurt examples is much weaker than is generally recognized. The Kane-Widerker objection holds that proponents of Frankfurt examples beg the question against incompatibilist accounts of free and responsible action by constructing examples that tacitly assume a compatibilist account of moral responsibility; that is, they assume that one can have non-derivative responsibility for choices that were not undetermined prior to their occurrence. The n…Read more
  •  305
    Trinity and Consistency
    Faith and Philosophy 23 (1): 45-54. 2006.
    P. T. Geach has argued that it is impossible to demonstrate that the doctrine of the Trinity is consistent. I try to show why -- on a common understanding of the notion of consistency -- his reasoning is flawed and why, on Geach’s own principles, one should expect that if the doctrine of the Trinity is true then it will be possible to prove that the doctrine is consistent, and it will be possible to do this in a way that makes no appeal to the truth of any religious doctrine
  •  207
    On the Geachian Theory of the Trinity And Incarnation
    Faith and Philosophy 33 (4): 474-486. 2016.
    Contemporary accounts of the Trinity and Incarnation sometimes employ aspects of Peter Geach's theory of relative identity. Geach's theory provides an account not merely of identity predicates, but also proper names and restricted quantification. In a previous work I developed an account of the doctrines of the Trinity and Incarnation incorporating these three aspects of Geach's theory and tried to show how each might contribute to our understanding of the doctrines. Joseph Jedwab has recently a…Read more
  •  197
    Arithmetic with Satisfaction
    Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 36 (2): 299-303. 1995.
    A language in which we can express arithmetic and which contains its own satisfaction predicate (in the style of Kripke's theory of truth) can be formulated using just two nonlogical primitives: (the successor function) and Sat (a satisfaction predicate)
  •  146
    The Theory of Computability Developed in Terms of Satisfaction
    Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 40 (4): 515-532. 1999.
    The notion of computability is developed through the study of the behavior of a set of languages interpreted over the natural numbers which contain their own fully defined satisfaction predicate and whose only other vocabulary is limited to "0", individual variables, the successor function, the identity relation and operators for disjunction, conjunction, and existential quantification.