2008 EPS Papers (Pendergraft)

November 20, 2008
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Garrett Pendergraft

Divine Deliberation (or Lack Thereof)

Abstract: When considering truths which do not seem knowable by God, we are urged to go one of two ways: limit the concept of omniscience and so preserve one of God’s traditional attributes; or maintain a robust concept of omniscience, deny that anyone fulfills the criteria, and maintain that God is nevertheless praiseworthy in virtue of possessing knowledge in some maximal sense. I will examine one particular restriction that has been posed by those who favor the former approach. More specifically, I will argue that those who restrict the concept of omniscience out of a concern for maintaining God’s deliberative powers do so unnecessarily. In so arguing, I will show that there are two plausible ways to conceive of divine deliberation (or lack thereof), neither of which requires a limitation on the concept of omniscience or on the application of that concept to God.