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Are omnipotence and necessary moral perfection compatible? Reply to Mawson



In response to an earlier paper of mine, T. J. Mawson has argued that omnipotence is logically incompatible with wrong-doing, ‘whilst accepting that there is “a genuine, active power knowingly to choose evil” and thus leaving room for a free-will defence to the problem of evil’. Here, I attempt to show that Mawson is mistaken on both counts – that his argument for the incompatibility of omnipotence and wrong-doing is defective, and that the free-will defence cannot be sustained on the ground marked out by him. Given Mawson's understanding of power and freedom, I argue that it would be possible for God to create persons who are both free and unable to make evil choices.



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