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The Existence of God$
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Richard Swinburne

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199271672

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199271672.001.0001

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The Explanatory Power of Theism: General Considerations

The Explanatory Power of Theism: General Considerations

Chapter:
(p.110) 6 The Explanatory Power of Theism: General Considerations
Source:
The Existence of God
Author(s):

Richard Swinburne (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199271672.003.0007

Evidence e renders a hypothesis h more probable in so far as both the prior probability of h is high and so is its explanatory power (that is it predictive power which is the probability of the evidence given the hypothesis, divided by the prior probability of the evidence). There cannot be a best of all possible worlds; but in virtue of his perfect goodness, God will bring about a very good world. A world containing ‘humanly free persons’, such as humans, with a free choice to bring about limited good or evil would contain a kind of goodness not possessed by any other world, and so it is quite probable that God would bring about such a world. Persons of this kind need to be embodied.

Keywords:   evidence, hypothesis, free choice, good, evil, embodiment, predictive power

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