In this interview, apologist and Word on Fire Institute Fellow Matt Nelson sits down with Dr. Travis Dumsday, Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Concordia University of Edmonton, Canada. They discuss the problem of divine hiddenness as presented by atheists for proof of God’s nonexistence and how Christians might respond with clarity and logic to such a compelling objection to God.
Matt Nelson: What is the problem of divine hiddenness, and why has it gained so much attention in recent years?
Dr. Travis Dumsday: Going back to the patristic era, Christian thinkers have wondered why it is that God permits a state of affairs in which a great many people fail to believe in his existence, whether pagans or atheists or agnostics. Why doesn’t God just make his reality obvious to everyone, such that no one could rationally doubt or deny the truth of theism? That sort of question sparked a lot of reflection concerning the ways of providence and why God structured revelation in the way he did. Various Church Fathers talk about this issue, including Origen, Gregory Nazianzus, John Chrysostom, and Maximus the Confessor.