chapter  21
Michael J. Murray Coercion and the Hiddenness of God
Pages 13

The sentiments expressed by Job in theabove epigram are ones that have been expressed by the sophisticated atheist as well as the typical church-goer. Most of us, in fact, have wondered at one time or another why it is that God does not reveal Himself in some dramatic fashion if He actually exists. Yet, while this question is widely entertained, it has received surprisingly little attention in the philosophical literature. In addition to puzzling many theists, the fact of divine hiddenness has prompted some non-theists to challenge the theist to provide some explanation for God’s apparent silence. The problem they have raised can be roughly stated as follows: If, as most theists claim, belief in God is essential to ultimate human fulfillment, one would expect that God would provide us with unambiguous evidence for His existence. However, such evidence is not forthcoming. Therefore, it is unlikely that the theist’s God exists.