What is it?
Craig’s Presentation on
Molinism in Four Views
on Divine Providence
• Named after:
16th Century Jesuit
Theologian Luis de Molina
• What might have happened had things gone
• Called counterfactuals as often the situations
considered are contrary to what has actually
– If John Howard had won the 2007 election then the
2013 Budget would be in surplus.
– If I were rich I would buy a Mercedes.
– If you were to ask her, she would say yes
– If I pull out into traffic now I won’t make it
Possible Worlds
• The full range of options that worlds could be
– e.g. God could have only created 27 people in one
• These are only the way things might have been
had God made things differently.
• They don’t all exist at once, or keep branching off
Natural Knowledge
• God knows what are logically possible worlds
and what are logically possible choices of
persons in those worlds
– Square Triangle worlds are impossible
– No logical impossibility in everyone accepting God
– No logical impossibility in everyone rejecting God
Middle Knowledge
• Persons can freely choose in a given situation
and hence place limits of feasibility on the
worlds the God can create.
• God however can look at all possible worlds and
create the one that he chooses.
Natural, Middle & Free Knowledge
• Natural: God’s knowledge of all logically possible
• Middle : God’s knowledge of what free agents
will do in any situation
• Free : God’s knowledge of what will happen in
the world that he as chosen to create.
Human Freedom
• It affords God a means of choosing which world
of free creatures to create
– People freely choose given certain points of decision
in a world.
– God chooses what world is created and hence what
circumstances are present at each decision point.
Uses of Molinism
Christian Particularism
Perseverance of the saints
Biblical inspiration
The fall and natural evil
Evolutionary theory
Providence is different to Soteriology
• Calvinism and Total Depravity (TD)
– Given TD there are no possible circumstances where
people will freely accept salvation.
– So middle knowledge worlds contain no persons who
freely accept the give of salvation
– Hence God can’t actualise our particular world where
people are saved.