Volume 14, Issue 2, 2012
Symposium on Paul Moser's Religious Epistemology
Paul K. Moser
Volitional and Evidential
This article contends that a God worthy of worship would care about how a human fills in the following blank: “I inquire or believe regarding God’s existence because I want _____.” It asks what human motives we should expect God to want in human inquiry and belief regarding God. This approach is widely neglected among philosophers, theologians, and others, but it can illuminate some important issues in religious epistemology. The article identifies the volitional struggle of Gethsemane as crucial to receiving salient evidence of God, and it notes how this approach manifests serious shortcomings in the arguments of traditional natural theology. It indicates that such arguments fail to accommodate the motives that God, as worthy of worship, would want in human inquiry and belief regarding God. The article proposes that divine redemption would aim for the profound moral, Gethsemane transformation of humans independent of abstract philosophical arguments. It identifies the key issue, for religious epistemology, of whether we are willing to undergo such transformation.