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The Evidence for God: Religious Knowledge Reexamined [Kindle Edition]

Paul K. Moser
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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  • Print ISBN-10: 0521516560
  • Print ISBN-13: 978-0521516563
  • Edition: Updated
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Book Description

If God exists, where can we find adequate evidence for God's existence? In this book, Paul Moser offers a new perspective on the evidence for God that centers on a morally robust version of theism that is cognitively resilient. The resulting evidence for God is not speculative, abstract, or casual. Rather, it is morally and existentially challenging to humans, as they themselves responsively and willingly become evidence of God's reality in receiving and reflecting God's moral character for others. Moser calls this 'personifying evidence of God,' because it requires the evidence to be personified in an intentional agent – such as a human – and thereby to be inherent evidence of an intentional agent. Contrasting this approach with skepticism, scientific naturalism, fideism, and natural theology, Moser also grapples with the potential problems of divine hiddenness, religious diversity, and vast evil.

Editorial Reviews


"There is much in this readable and pointed book that will interest and challenge both philosophers and theologians, and the epistemological reorientation Moser develops has the potential to significantly alter debates in current philosophy of religion, and for the better. --Review of Metaphysics

"This is a powerful and highly thought-provoking book, always meticulously argued, but also written with the kind of overt emotional commitment that is rare in contemporary philosophy of religion, particularly that dealing with epistemological questions." --TLS

Book Description

Paul Moser offers a new perspective on the evidence for God that centers on a morally robust version of theism that is cognitively resilient. The resulting evidence for God is morally and existentially challenging to humans, as they themselves responsively and willingly become evidence of God's reality in receiving and reflecting God's moral character for others.

Product Details

  • File Size: 853 KB
  • Print Length: 291 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0521516560
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 4 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; Updated edition (November 30, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #951,624 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
3.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the content is a gem December 28, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I ordered this book on a whim and am surprised that no one has reviewed it yet. I will do a more detailed review later, but have some review points for an interested reader:

1. The main point of the book, that God does reveal himself to the world, but not on our terms, is salient. Sounds God-worthy. God exhibits His existence in a life submitted to him. We, morally committed to Christ's purposes, are the evidence to the world (and to ourselves)of God's existence. He builds on this point and gives the core idea a lot of substance. Well worth reading.

2. Why four stars and not five? Frankly, Moser is an academian and writes like one. His sentence structures are too long and complex. I sometimes find myself re-reading a sentence many times to figure out what he's saying. The only reason I am working thru this book (about 2/3rds done) is because the content is rewarding and may in the final analysis be correct!

3. This book creates a path that seems viable. The naturalists want the Christian world to confront them on their terms. When Christians debate atheists to provide objective truth for God's existence, they always get smeared. It's embarrasssing to watch the gyrations that Christians go through to prove God from a worldly aspect. This book provides an alternative viewpoint that respects God, respects our responsibility toward God, and works out faith in a realistic fashion.

I'd like to hear the take of others on Moser's work. I find it a relief from the worn out apologetics found in popular Christian books. Ken
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing September 11, 2010
By Reader
In the `The Evidence for God' Paul Moser argues in favour of a position that he refers to as volitional theism. Roughly stated volitional theism is a variant of religious experience wherein the onus for divine disclosure is on God rather than man. That is, God reaches out in the appropriate way and at the appropriate time to call receptive agents into a transforming relationship with him. The resultant transformed agents then provide evidence for the existence of God.

Moser's correctly notes that standard philosophical debates over the existence of God are often framed in a detached arms-length manner, a manner which presupposes that the answer to the question is causalLY ineffective with regard to the inquirer. Moser contends, rightfully I believe, that this human-centric approach is misguided. If there is an all-powerful all good God why would he not set the conditions for his disclosure and why would not an aspect of that disclosure entail responsiveness.

I bought this book after reading a similar essay by Moser in `God is good God is Great'. Despite being generally sympathetic to Moser's thesis I was disappointed with the text. While Moser may well be an interesting and informed thinker he is limited by his byzantine writing style - verbose, rambling and repetitive. Despite having an interest, and a background, in this area I found it is difficult and frustrating read. I am hard pressed to envision an audience for this book. The laymen will likely be lost in Moser's overly qualified language and vacuous prose, while the subject matter expert will be frustrated by his pedantic style.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Evidence for Christian Theism May 3, 2010
Paul K. Moser (Professor & Chairperson Dept. of Philosophy: Loyola University, Chicago) relates epistemic issues to the evidence for the existence of God with masterly skill in "The Evidence for God: Religious Knowledge Reexamined." Moser, author of "The Elusive God," paints a far more textured picture of epistemology's crucial role in determining genuine evidence for the existence of the Christian God than the majority of contemporary apologists.

Along the way Professor Moser attempts to deflate various arguments for theism that play down the ontic majesty of the true and living God. Additionally he cogently refutes naturalism with precision and care (pp. 46-84). His persuasive and inexpugnable contestations refuting sundry schools of naturalism alone make this volume worth purchasing. Professor Moser also convincingly discredits fideism as he provides the reader with a thoughtful case against blind faith.

The book "develops volitional theism against the background that includes critical assessment of prominent competing positions" (Naturalism, Fideism, Traditional Proofs, Plantinga's epistemology - p. 45).

The book's claims are launched with an erudite quote from H.H. Farmer: "Many questions are answered wrongly, not because the evidence is contradictory or inadequate, but because the mind through its fundamental dispositions and presuppositions is out of focus with the only kind of evidence which is really available" (p. 1).

Moser controverts numerous forms of Naturalism including:

- Quine's (p. 68-70)
- Ontological Naturalism
a. Eliminative ontological naturalism
b. Noneliminative reductive ontological naturalism
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More About the Author

Paul K. Moser is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University Chicago and the past Editor of the American Philosophical Quarterly. His latest book is The Severity of God: Religion & Philosophy Reconceived (Cambridge University Press, 2013). He is also the author of The Evidence for God (Cambridge University Press, 2010). This book is a sequel to his book, The Elusive God (Cambridge University Press, 2008), which won the 2011 Alpha Sigma Nu Book Award for Philosophy. His co-edited collection The Wisdom of the Christian Faith was published by Cambridge University Press in 2012, and his edited collection Jesus and Philosophy was published by Cambridge University Press in 2009. He is also Co-Editor of the new Cambridge University Press book series, Cambridge Studies in Religion, Philosophy, and Society. His current book in progress is The Presence of God: Power and Experience in Religion.

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