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By Whose Authority: A Political Argument for God's Existence

Tyler McNabb, Jeremy Neill

Abstract

In The Problem of Political Authority, Michael Huemer argues that the contractarian and consequentialist groundings of political authority are unsuccessful, and, in fact, that there are no adequate contemporary accounts of political authority. As such, the modern state is illegitimate and we have reasons to affirm political anarchism. We disagree with Huemer’s conclusion. But we consider Huemer’s critiques of contractarianism and consequentialism to be compelling. Here we will juxtapose, alongside Huemer’s critiques, a theistic account of political authority from Nicholas Wolterstorff’s book The Mighty and the Almighty. We think that Wolterstorff’s model does better than contractarianism and consequentialism at answering Huemer’s critiques. We also think that an abductive basis for God’s existence emerges from the inadequate authority accounts that Huemer surveys.

Keywords

Huemer, Calvin, Problem of Authority, Social Contract

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