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Faith and Philosophy

Volume 38, Issue 1, January 2021

Robert J. HartmanOrcid-ID
Pages 45-64

Heavenly Freedom and Two Models of Character Perfection

Human persons can act with libertarian freedom in heaven according to one prominent view, because they have freely acquired perfect virtue in their pre-heavenly lives such that acting rightly in heaven is volitionally necessary. But since the character of human persons is not perfect at death, how is their character perfected? On the unilateral model, God alone completes the perfec­tion of their character, and, on the cooperative model, God continues to work with them in purgatory to perfect their own character. I argue that although both models can make sense of all human persons enjoying free will in heaven on var­ious assumptions, the cooperative model allows all human persons in heaven to enjoy a greater degree of freedom. This consideration about the degree of heav­enly freedom provides a reason for God to implement the cooperative model.

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