Why God would not send his sons to Oxford: parenting and the problem of evil

Imagine a London merchant deliberating whether to send his ten sons to Oxford or to Cambridge. Leafing through the flyers, he learns that, if he sends the boys to Cambridge, they will make
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Imagine a London merchant deliberating whether to send his ten sons to Oxford or to Cambridge. Leafing through the flyers, he learns that, if he sends the boys to Cambridge, they will make “considerable progress in the sciences as well as in virtue, so that their merit will elevate them to honourable occupations for the rest of their lives” — on the other hand, if he sends them to Oxford, “they will become depraved, they will become rascals, and they will pass from  mischief to mischief until the law will have to set them in order, and condemn them to various punishments.” Never doubting the truth of these predictions, he still decides to send the lads to Oxford, and not to Cambridge. “Is it not clear, according to our common notions, that 1) this merchant wants his sons to be wicked and miserable; and 2) that, consequently, he is acting in a way that is contrary to goodness and to the love of virtue?” This is not an excerpt from a Cambridge undergraduate prospectus. It is a version. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Philosophy

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