July 24, 2012
This post gives a few more that try to prove the same point. Unlike the previous examples though, these describe cases of missing some instance of divine communication that DGT proponents would likely acknowledge occur, and yet would agree pose no threat to omnipotence.
Let's call these "the accepted examples."
- One can read some portion of the Bible, or hear some biblical passage, and yet fail to recognize or believe that it's divine communication.
- One can read or hear some passage of the Bible, but wrongly interpret it, and thus, fail to understand what God intends to communicate or teach through that passage. Indeed, reliably understanding these features of a passage usually doesn't happen without someone or other doing the hard work of hermeneutics and exegesis.
- During Jesus' earthly ministry, his hearers frequently misunderstood his claims.
- For most of his time on earth, Jesus concealed his divine attributes, and as a result, many failed to recognize him as God. Those who did so thus failed to recognize his speech as divine communication.
- In at least one instance (Luke 24:13-35), Jesus concealed from others not only his identity as the second person of the Trinity, but even the fact that he was Jesus of Nazareth, and thus, prevented them from recognizing altogether who they were talking to. (These last two examples are akin to those from the previous post.)
The accepted examples are instructive for two reasons. First, they make explicit that most of us already agree that missing it is compatible with omnipotence. And second, they show that the DGT objection, were it sound, would exact too high a cost, namely, by implying that certain widely accepted truths are no more compatible with omnipotence than HG supposedly is.
To be sure, the modes of divine communication in the accepted examples differ in various ways from the HG-type examples. However, there seems to be no way of distinguishing the two--short of being ad hoc--such that the former, but not the latter, are compatible with omnipotence. If the HG-type examples are incompatible with omnipotence, then the accepted examples are, too; that's too costly. Or if the accepted examples are compatible with omnipotence, then so is HG, and therefore, again, DGT is an unsound objection to HG.