Skeptical Theism [Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]

I like this description, and it might describe my own theological views.

Skeptical theism is the view that God exists but that we should be skeptical of our ability to discern God’s reasons for acting or refraining from acting in any particular instance.  In particular, says the skeptical theist, we should not grant that our inability to think of a good reason for doing or allowing something is indicative of whether or not God might have a good reason for doing or allowing something.

But I’m not as enamored of this:

If skeptical theism is true, it appears to undercut the primary argument for atheism, namely the argument from evil.

I’d think the “primary argument for atheism” would be the lack of empirical evidence that God exists. We take God’s existence on faith. Efforts to prove God’s existence have failed, as Three Minute Philosophy points out so well.

That said, skeptical theism provides an answer to angry atheists who ask, “How can you possibly believe that?” Which is good enough for me, but not quite good enough to tell atheists that they’re wrong.

Skeptical Theism [Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]


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