Hell and Vagueness

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Brian Weatherson has probably the best philosophy blog out there. He recently posted some thoughts about Ted Sider's paper "Hell and Vagueness" in Faith and Philosophy (2003). Ted basically argues that the distinction in goodness between the worst people in heaven and the best people in hell can't be very large, since everyone's goodness is on a continuum. God must have arbitrarily drawn a line. In response to those who complain about this as works-based salvation, he then retools the argument in terms of how much faith people have rather than how good their deeds are. I think this all misses the point, and I told him so when I read his first draft.

These issues have come up in the flurry of responses to Brian's more Catholic-friendly (but probably seriously heretical) recommendations to the theist, but Reformed views have been somewhat underrepresented and perhaps even misrepresented, even among those discussing specifically Protestant views, so I've included my thoughts. I'm arguing that we aren't in a position to say the Reformed view of God's treatment of elect and unelect is unjust, as people have been asserting. I think Brian's blog entry and all the responses are worth reading, but if you want to skip to my thoughts, go down to Dec 10. That's the first one of mine.


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