•  526
    Traditional Christian Theism and Truthmaker Maximalism
    European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 4 (1): 197-218. 2012.
    I argue that Traditional Christian Theism is inconsistent with Truthmaker Maximalism, the thesis that all truths have truthmakers. Though this original formulation requires extensive revision, the gist of the argument is as follows. Suppose for reductio Traditional Christian Theism and the sort of Truthmaker Theory that embraces Truthmaker Maximalism are both true. By Traditional Christian Theism, there is a world in which God, and only God, exists. There are no animals in such a world. Thus…Read more
  •  463
    Temporary Intrinsics and Christological Predication
    In Jon Kvanvig (ed.), Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion, VII, Oxford University Press. pp. 157-189. 2016.
    In this paper I show that the problem of temporary intrinsics and a fundamental philosophical problem concerning the doctrine of the incarnation are isomorphic. To do so, I present the problem of temporary intrinsics, along with five responses to the problem. I then present the fundamental problem for Christology, which I call the problem of natural intrinsics. I present six responses to that problem, all but the last analogous to a response to the problem of temporary intrinsics. My goal is not…Read more
  •  400
    A Solution to the Fundamental Philosophical Problem of Christology
    Journal of Analytic Theology 2 61-85. 2014.
    I consider the fundamental philosophical problem for Christology: how can one and the same person, the Second Person of the Trinity, be both God and man. For being God implies having certain attributes, perhaps immutability, or impassibility, whereas being human implies having apparently inconsistent attributes. This problem is especially vexing for the proponent of Conciliar Christology – the Christology taught in the Ecumenical Councils – since those councils affirm that Christ is both mutable…Read more
  •  376
    Conciliar Christology and the Problem of Incompatible Predications
    Scientia et Fides 3 (2): 85-106. 2015.
    In this article I canvas the options available to a proponent of the traditional doctrine of the incarnation against a charge of incoherence. In particular, I consider the charge of incoherence due to incompatible predications both being true of the same one person, the God-man Jesus Christ. For instance, one might think that any- thing divine has to have certain attributes – perhaps omnipotence, or impassibility. But, the charge continues, nothing human can be omnipotent or impassible. And so n…Read more
  •  342
    Thomistic Multiple Incarnations
    Heythrop Journal (6): 359-370. 2014.
    In this article I present St. Thomas Aquinas’s views on the possibility of multiple incarnations. First I disambiguate four things one might mean when saying that multiple incarnations are possible. Then I provide and justify what I take to be Aquinas’s answers to these questions, showing the intricacies of his argumentation and concluding that he holds an extremely robust view of the possibility of multiple incarnations. According to Aquinas, I argue, there could be three simultaneously exis…Read more
  •  254
    [paragraph 3 of the article] The goal of this article is to flesh out that initial understanding of incarnational immutability. The method I employ to attain this goal is to consider cases of predications from the texts of conciliar Christology. I show potential ontological truth conditions for those predications being true that do not require the truth conditions I propose for immutability to be unsatisfied. Put otherwise, I show ontological truth conditions for predications that imply Christ’s…Read more
  •  114
    Aquinas on Blameworthiness and the Virtue of Faith
    Journal of Postgraduates in Wuhan University 21 (4): 21-26. 2005.
    Many Christians seem to have difficulty in their worldview insofar as they affirm: (1) If a person cannot do something, then that person is not blameworthy for not doing that action, (2) No one has it within his or her power to acquire faith, and (3) Some individuals who do not have the virtue of faith are nevertheless blameworthy for not having faith. These propositions together appear to entail a contradiction. In this paper I show how the Christian philosopher, St. Thomas Aquinas, affirms th…Read more
  •  107
    This is a review of _God Without Parts: Divine Simplicity and the Metaphysics of God's Absoluteness_, by James E. Dolezal.
  •  100
    Transubstantiation, Tropes, and Truthmakers
    American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 86 (1): 71-96. 2012.
    This article addresses a difficult case at the intersection of philosophical theology and truthmaker theory. I show that three views, together, lead to difficultiesin providing truthmakers for truths of contingent predication, such as that the bread is white. These three views are: the Catholic dogma of transubstantiation, astandard truthmaker theory, and a trope view of properties. I present and explain each of these three views, at each step noting their connections to the thought of St. Thoma…Read more
  •  94
    Change, Difference, and Orthodox Truthmaker Theory
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (3): 539-550. 2014.
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Ahead of Print
  •  93
    The Five Ways
    In Brian Davies & Eleonore Stump (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Aquinas, Oxford University Press. pp. 115-131. 2011.
    I present and evaluate the 5 Ways of St. Thomas Aquinas. I discuss the contentious premises and inferences of the arguments.
  •  90
    The Possibility Principle and the Truthmakers for Modal Truths
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3): 417-428. 2010.
    A necessary part of David Armstrong's account of truthmakers for modal truths is his Possibility principle: any truthmaker for a contingent truth is also a truthmaker for the possibility of the complement of that contingent truth (if T makes _p_ true and _p_ is contingent, then T makes ⋄∼_p_ true). I criticize Armstrong's Possibility principle for two reasons. First, his argument for the Possibility principle both relies on an unwarranted generalization and vitiates his desire for relevant truth…Read more
  •  83
  •  65
    Divine Immutability
    The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2009.
    Divine immutability, the claim that God is immutable, is a central part of traditional Christianity, though it has come under sustained attack in the last two hundred years. This article first catalogues the historical precedent for and against this claim, then discusses different answers to the question, “What is it to be immutable?” Two definitions of divine immutability receive careful attention. The first is that for God to be immutable is for God to have a constant character and to be f…Read more
  •  59
    Aquinas' five ways
    In Michael Bruce & Steven Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy, Wiley-blackwell. pp. 7--17. 2011.
    In this article I present Aquinas's 5 ways in their logical structure and provide some discussion of the contentious premises or inferences.
  •  56
    In Defense of Divine Truthmaker Simplicity
    Res Philosophica 96 (1): 63-75. 2019.
    In his recent article “Against Divine Truthmaker Simplicity,” Noël Saenz has provided two careful arguments for the falsity of a theory of divine simplicity which he dubs “Divine Truthmaker Simplicity.” In this brief response, I criticize his two arguments, arguing that neither is sound.
  •  54
    Brian Hebblethwaite's arguments against multiple incarnations
    Religious Studies 52 (1): 117-130. 2016.
    In this article I present two arguments from Brian Hebblethwaite for the conclusion that multiple incarnations are impossible, as well as the analyses of those arguments provided by three other thinkers: Oliver Crisp, Peter Kevern, and Robin Le Poidevin. I argue that both of Hebblethwaite's arguments are unsound.
  •  53
    Christologically Inspired, Empirically Motivated Hylomorphism
    Res Philosophica 93 (1): 137-160. 2016.
    In this paper we present the standard Thomistic view concerning substances and their parts. We then note some objections to that view. Afterwards, we present Aquinas’s Christology, then draw an analogy between the relation that holds between the Second Person and the assumed human nature, on the one hand, and the relation that holds between a substance whole and its substance parts, on the other. We then show how the analogy, which St. Thomas himself drew at points, is useful for providing a the…Read more
  •  53
    Aquinas’s Ontology of the Material World: Change, Hylomorphism, and Material Objects. By Jeffrey E. Brower (review)
    American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 89 (4): 723-727. 2015.
    I review Jeffrey Brower's book, "Aquinas's Ontology of the Material World"
  •  44
    The Freedom of Christ and Explanatory Priority
    Religious Studies 50 (2): 157-173. 2014.
    Call the claim, common to many in the Christian intellectual tradition, that Christ, in virtue of his created human intellect, had certain, infallible, exhaustive foreknowledge the Foreknowledge Thesis. Now consider what I will call the Conditional: if the Foreknowledge Thesis is true, then Christ's created human will was not free. In so far as many, perhaps all, of the people who affirm the Foreknowledge Thesis also wish to affirm the freedom of Christ's human will, the truth of the Conditional…Read more
  •  38
    Truthmaking and Christian Theology
    Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association 89 181-194. 2015.
    This paper analyzes Catholic philosophy by investigating the parameters that Catholic dogmatic claims set for theories of truthmaking. First I argue that two well-known truthmaker views—the view that properties alone are the truthmakers for contingent predications, and the view that all truths need truthmakers—are precluded by Catholic dogma. In particular, the doctrine of transubstantiation precludes the first, and the doctrines of divine causality and divine freedom together preclude the secon…Read more
  •  36
    The freedom of Christ and the problem of deliberation
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 75 (3): 233-247. 2014.
    Call the claim, common to many in the Christian intellectual tradition, that Christ, in virtue of his created human intellect, had certain, infallible exhaustive foreknowledge the Foreknowledge Thesis. Now consider what I will call the Conditional: If the Foreknowledge Thesis is true, then Christ’s created human will lacked an important sort of freedom that we mere humans have. Insofar as many, perhaps all, of the people who affirm the Foreknowledge Thesis also wish to affirm the robust freedom …Read more
  •  35
    Stone's Evidential Atheism: A Critique
    Faith and Philosophy 30 (3): 317-329. 2013.
    In a pair of recent articles, Jim Stone presents a new version of the Evidential Argument from Evil. I provide two arguments against Stone’s Evidential Problem of Evil, one from the dialectical standpoint of a theist, the second from a dialectical standpoint that is neutral between theism and atheism. In neither case, I argue, should an interlocutor accept all the premises of the argument.
  •  31
    This work presents a historically informed, systematic exposition of the Christology of the first seven Ecumenical Councils of undivided Christendom, from the First Council of Nicaea in 325 AD to the Second Council of Nicaea in 787 AD. Assuming the truth of Conciliar Christology for the sake of argument, Timothy Pawl considers whether there are good philosophical arguments that show a contradiction or incoherence in that doctrine. He presents the definitions of important terms in the debate and …Read more
  •  29
    A Thomistic Truthmaker Principle
    Acta Philosophica 25 (1): 45-64. 2016.
    In this article I provide a Thomistic truthmaker principle. Although Aquinas himself never provides a truthmaker principle, he does say things that show he thought many truths require truthmakers, or, in other terms, that truths have an ontological grounding. That truths are somehow grounded or explained by reality is an important aspect of Thomistic thought. The principle I provide could be affirmed by someone with Thomistic tendencies: it is consistent with Aquinas’ thought and makes sense of …Read more
  •  20
    Complete Symposium on Jc Beall's Christ – A Contradiction: A Defense of Contradictory Christology
    with Jc Beall, Thomas McCall, A. J. Cotnoir, and Sara L. Uckelman
    Journal of Analytic Theology 7 (1): 400-577. 2019.
    The fundamental problem of Christology is the apparent contradiction of Christ as recorded at Chalcedon. Christ is human and Christ is divine. Being divine entails being immutable. Being human entails being mutable. Were Christ two different persons there’d be no apparent contradiction. But Chalcedon rules as much out. Were Christ only partly human or only partly divine there’d be no apparent contradiction. But Chalcedon rules as much out. Were the very meaning of ‘mutable’ and/or ‘immutable’ ot…Read more
  •  11
    Explosive Theology: A Reply to Jc Beall’s “Christ – A Contradiction”
    Journal of Analytic Theology 7 (1): 440-451. 2019.
  •  10
    This study considers the philosophical arguments against that Extended Conciliar Christology and argues that none of them succeed in showing the doctrine to be false, or incoherent, or inconsistent.