The Elusive God: Reorienting Religious Epistemology

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Overview

Three questions motivate this book’s account of evidence for the existence of God. First, if God’s existence is hidden, why suppose He exists at all? Second, if God exists, why is He hidden, particularly if God seeks to communicate with people? Third, what are the implications of divine hiddenness for philosophy, theology, and religion’s supposed knowledge of God? This book answers these questions on the basis of a new account of evidence and knowledge of divine reality that challenges skepticism about God’s existence. The central thesis is that we should expect evidence of divine reality to be purposively available to humans, that is, available only in a manner suitable to divine purposes in self-revelation. This lesson generates a seismic shift in our understanding of evidence and knowledge of divine reality. The result is a needed reorienting of religious epistemology to accommodate the character and purposes of an authoritative, perfectly loving God.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
‘I found The Elusive God to be the most profound and interesting work I have read in the past twenty years at the intersection of philosophy and theology. Instead of beginning with a demand for evidence of the existence of a divine being, the author argues that we should expect any intrusion into our lives of the sort that would convince us that God exists to be authoritative evidence that calls us not only to a cognitive viewpoint but also to a surrendering of our wills. The result of such an investigation is a re-conceptualization of the epistemological landscape relevant to the possibility of the knowledge of God.’ --Jonathan Kvanvig, Baylor University

"*The Elusive God* ... is clearly a profound and illuminating treatment on as big an issue as issues get." --Nicholas Rescher, University of Pittsburgh

"This is an exciting thesis that merits further study and analysis." --Choice

"...important and challenging book." --John Bishop, of The University oF Auckland

"...remarkable, noteworthy volume. ...Truly, Moser has done philosophy--and natural theology in particular--an immense service by pointing us in a new, exciting direction. Indeed, his book is a must-read for every philosopher and theologian!" --Review Metaphysics

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521120081
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 10/31/2009
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 308
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul K. Moser is Professor and Chair of Philosophy at Loyola University, Chicago. He is editor of Jesus and Philosophy (Cambridge University Press, 2008), and co-editor of Divine Hiddenness (Cambridge University Press, 2002) and The Rationality of Theism (Routledge, 2003). He is also Editor of the journal American Philosophical Quarterly. His latest book is The Evidence for God, (Cambridge University Press, 2010), aimed at a non-scholarly audience.
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Table of Contents


Preface     ix
Introduction     1
Questions     1
Plans     9
God Undercover     18
Doubting Skeptics     29
Skepticism     30
Divine Evidence     32
Judgment     39
Under Authority     46
Volitional Knowing     55
Skeptical Tests     60
Trust and Distrust     71
Voice Lessons     77
Knowing as Attunement     83
Rationality and Explanation     83
Robust Theism     92
Filial Knowledge     95
Cognitive Idolatry     101
Divine Hiding     105
Attunement     113
Love's Evidence     123
Revelation for Change     126
Dying to Know     144
Spirit     144
Acquaintance with Power     153
Jerusalem and Athens     158
Good News     162
Forgiveness unto Reconciliation     171
Dying and Rising     180
Dancing on Graves     186
Philosophy Revamped     201
Beginning Again     201
PursuingQuestions     203
Going for Broke     210
Two Modes     222
Yielding     228
Aftermath     242
Evidence without Coercion     243
Death's Gain and Loss     247
Outside Help     253
Dying to Live     257
Skepticism Undone     265
Epistemic Circles     266
Epistemic Burdens     272
Conclusion     278
References     279
Index     287
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