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The 'Argument from Miracle': An Example of Ramified Natural Theology

by Robert A. Larmer

In this paper I argue that the ‘argument from miracle’ can best be understood as a powerful instance of what is coming to be known as ramified natural theology.

Traditionally, it has been assumed that natural theology must eschew consideration of special revelation from God and consider only data that is available to unaided reason. This, however, is to ignore the fact that a purported revelation may include content that is empirically verifiable and thus within the purview of natural theology.

Miracles are publicly observable events that cry out for an explanation. One need not come to such events already accepting the interpretation placed on them by religious believers - the Bible can be read as historical evidence rather than authoritative Scripture - but neither is one prohibited from considering whether that interpretation does indeed provide the best understanding of the events. This opens up the possibility that someone who initially does not accept theism might at once accept both the claim of God’s existence and the claim of God’s self-disclosure.

The full-text of this contribution is available for FREE by clicking here.

For more on Larmer's recent work on this topic, see his book, The Legitimacy of Miracle (Lexington Books, 2013).

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