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Divine goodness and the efficacy of petitionary prayer

  • JONATHAN REIBSAMEN (a1)

Abstract

Is divine goodness incompatible with efficacious petitionary prayer? Scott Davison has recently argued that prayer cannot make a difference in what God would do since a good God must always do what is best. I examine Davison's presentation of the divine goodness problem for petitionary prayer, and argue that the argument fails. I go on to argue that, since there are certain relational benefits uniquely made available through responding to petitionary prayer, divine goodness leads us to expect that God would at least sometimes respond to petitionary prayer – even prayers for third parties.

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