Philosophia Christi: Hell, Annihilationism & Threshold Deontology

June 11, 2010
Posted by Administrator

The Summer 2010 issue of Philosophia Christi has some stimulating discussion at the intersection of philosophical theology and ethics.

Shawn Bawulski (St. Andrews University), “Annihilationism, Traditionalism and the Problem of Hell.”

Abstract: Logically consistent responses to the problem of hell are readily available. The Christian theologian should seek to go beyond these minimal criteria, providing a response that is also plausible and is harmonious with both Scripture and the tradition. In this paper I will ex­amine annihilationism and two forms of traditionalism, assessing each view’s success not only in defending against the logical problem of hell, but also success with these additional criteria. I will suggest that a refined version of the traditional view best succeeds.

Stephen Kershnar (SUNY Fredonia), “Hell, Threshold Deontology and Abortion.”

Abstract: In this paper, I argue that Threshold-Hell Christianity conflicts with the pro-life posi­tion on abortion. The specific type of Christianity is that which also accepts threshold deontol­ogy and the existence of hell. Threshold deontology is the view that ordinarily moral duties consist of nonconsequentialist side-constraints on the pursuit of the good but that in some cases these side-constraints are overridden. My strategy is to establish that a person who brings about an abortion guarantees that the aborted individual goes to heaven and that it is morally permis­sible to guarantee someone goes to heaven. It follows that if Threshold-Hell Christianity is true, then abortion is morally permissible.

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