Divine Omniscience and Human Evil

Philosophy and Theology 17 (1-2):107-120 (2005)
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Abstract

The ‘middle knowledge’ doctrine salvages free will and divine omniscience by contending that God knows what agents will freely choose under any possible circumstances. I argue, however, that the Leibnizian problem of divine knowledge of human evil is best resolved by applying a Theodicy II distinction between determined, foreseen, and resolved action. This move eliminates deference to middle knowledge. Contingent action is indeed free, but not all action is contingent, and so not all action is free. For Leibniz, then, God’s knowledge extends to the sum pattern of determinates for an act, rather than to contingent events.

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Jill Hernandez
Texas Tech University

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