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Could God Know What I Would Freely Do? Molinism and The Grounding Objection

Author(s): Richard H. Corrigan

Journal: Philosophical Frontiers : A Journal of Emerging Thought
ISSN 1758-1532

Volume: 3;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 43;
Date: 2008;
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Keywords: Molinism | Foreknowledge | Possible Worlds | Grounding Objection

This paper is a refutation of the Molinist contention that God hasMiddle Knowledge of subjunctive conditional propositions that state what an agent would freely do, if instantiated in particular possible states of affairs. The Molinist holds that his account of God’s prevolitional knowledge of these counterfactuals is sufficient to ensure that there is no conflict between divine providence and human free will. In this paper, I contend that the Molinist thesis is deficient because it can provide no adequate account of how God could have knowledge of this kind. I argue against Saurez and Kvanvig’s proposal that divine knowledge of the possibleagent’s creaturely essence is sufficient for perfect foreknowledge of what that agent would in any specific circumstance. I then proceed to refute Flint’s suggestion that Lewis’s possible world semantics can be used to show that these counterfactuals aregrounded in the nearest possible world.
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