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April 16, 2014 / compassioninpolitics

Anthony Flew’s Critique of Humes Theory of Miracles and Experience

“Philosopher Anthony Flew, a world authority on Hume and one-time much feted atheist, has now radically revised his assessment of Hume, saying that his (Flew’s) celebrated book needs to be re-written ‘in light of my new-found awareness that Hume was utterly wrong to maintain that we have no experience, and hence no genuine ideas, of making things happen and preventing things from happening, of physical necessity and physical impossibility. Generations of Humeans have in consequence been misled into offering anally of causation and of natural law that have been far too weak because they had no basis for accepting the existence of either cause and effect or natural laws. Hume’s skepticism about cause and effect and his agnosticism about the external world are of course jettisoned the moment he leaves the study. Quite so. Strange that authors like Christopher Hitchens think that Hume is the last word on the subject. But then Hitchens is not a scientists. Dawkins does not have the same excuse.”

(John Lennox, God’s Undertaker, p. 198)

“We conclude that there are two major reasons why Hume’s view of miracles is deeply flawed:
1) Since he denies that the uniformity of nature can be established, he cannot turn around and use it to disprove miracle.
2) Since he denies necessary causation, he cannot regard nature as described by laws embodying necessary relationships which would preclude miracle.”

(John Lennox, God’s Undertaker, p. 198)

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