Divine Simplicity Again

Here is what David Bentley Hart has to say about Divine Simplicity, the ever so crucial doctrine to our faith.

If God is to be understood as the unconditioned source of all things, rather than merely some very powerful but still ontologically dependent being, then any denial of divine simplicity is equivalent to a denial of God’s reality. This is obvious if one remembers what the argument from creature contingency to divine necessity implies. To be the first cause of the whole universal chain of per se causality, God must be wholly unconditioned in every sense. He cannot be composed of and so dependent upon several constituents, physical or metaphysical, as then he would himself be conditional.

This is quite a bold claim. I know several prominent theologians who deny divine simplicity i.e. James Torrance. It seems clear to me that the denial of Divine Simplicity creates many problems, but these other guys don’t see it as a problem. I’m still trying to figure out how they make their way around these potholes….


Published by cwoznicki

Chris Woznicki is an Assistant Adjunct Professor of Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary. He works as the regional training associate for the Los Angeles region of Young Life.

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