Dale Tuggy

Dale Tuggy is Professor of Philosophy at the State University of New York at Fredonia, where he teaches courses in analytic theology, philosophy of religion, religious studies, and the history of philosophy.


  1. Wulf
    June 22, 2017 @ 9:38 pm

    I guess I’d be surprised that you’d waste your time on McLatchie if it wasn’t so entertaining to see his arguments blown to dust. I suppose his arrogance called for this more than his cv.

  2. Bálint
    June 11, 2017 @ 6:40 pm

    Thanks, Dale,

    Well, I’ve been trying to reflect on this, but premise 4 still seems plausible to me. If you collect all the different types of fulfillment-like phenomena in the NT where Jesus is linked to Yahweh in that way — this agent concept has to bear immense weight to prevent all of the inferences to Jesus’ divinity.

    • Bálint
      June 11, 2017 @ 6:40 pm

      Sorry, this should have been a reply to my previous comment.

  3. John Thomas
    June 10, 2017 @ 4:10 pm

    Well, if Christian God is a tripersonal being, does that mean that Father, Son and Holy Spirit are each 1 distinct person and 1/3 being?

  4. Bálint
    June 10, 2017 @ 1:32 pm

    I think the fulfillment argument McLatchie is getting at looks something like the following:

    1. In Joel 2 Yahweh (truly) promises to pour our his spirit on all flesh.
    2. In Acts 2 Peter (truly) states that this promise has been fulfilled by Jesus pouring out God’s spirit.
    3. Therefore, the relationship between Yahweh and Jesus is such that in some cases Jesus performing an act can be (rightly) claimed to fulfill a promise of Yahweh performing that act.
    4. If Jesus were not Yahweh, (3.) would be false.
    5. Therefore, Jesus is Yahweh.

    I intentionally left premise (4.) a bit ambiguous, due to the unclarity of McLatchie’s conclusion. It is clear, though, that what you disagree on is this premise.

    • Dale
      June 10, 2017 @ 10:42 pm

      Hi Balint,

      Well done – your argument is valid. Unfortunately, premise 4 in your analysis seems false, so the argument seems unsound. A messiah is kind of like a prophet, but greater. So of course the Messiah can act and speak on behalf of God; God can act and communicate through this man. This is a major theme of the gospels. But then, it seems that the man can fulfill predictions about what God will do (when God is doing these things through him).

      Perhaps this sort of idea doesn’t easily admit of a deductive argument. Perhaps it would be better to argue like this.

      1. In Joel 2 Yahweh (truly) promises to pour our his spirit on all flesh.
      2. In Acts 2 Peter (truly) states that this promise has been fulfilled by Jesus pouring out God’s spirit.
      And *the best explanation of* 1 and 2 is that Jesus is Yahweh (or “fully divine”).

      But that’ll be hard to show!

  5. Matías
    June 9, 2017 @ 11:43 pm

    Interesting posts Dale. I’m currently pursuing a degree in theology and have never seen someone interacting with the doctrine of the Trinity as you do. I’m a trinitarian, but that doesn’t stop me from recognizing that what you do has a lot of merit. I was wondering if you could suggest me some readings (books and articles) in which your perspectives on God and Jesus are defended both from a philosophical and exegetical point of view.

    • Dale
      June 10, 2017 @ 10:34 pm

      Hi Matias – thanks for your comment. I am currently working on what will be the first book on the subject from a philosophical angle, which will critique various approaches and then argue for my view. I *might* have it out by the end of this year. Also stay tuned for an upcoming podcast episode called “The unfinished business of the Reformation,” which previews some arguments of my central chapter. As to exegesis, the main place is in any serious exegete / textual scholar, who is not trying to support various Trinity speculations. These are many, past and present. But as for books by biblical unitarians, two books that I’ve found particularly helpful are these two. http://www.lulu.com/shop/john-wilson/scripture-proofs-and-scriptural-illustrations-of-unitarianism/paperback/product-1019201.html http://astore.amazon.com/trinities-20/detail/0962897140 Both are fairly comprehensive, and I think that particularly the latter is a good starting place. As to exegetical information online, two good sources are christianmonotheism.com and http://21stcr.org/.