Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Abraham's DiceChance and Providence in the Monotheistic Traditions$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Karl W. Giberson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190277154

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190277154.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 18 October 2021

Random Numbers and God’s Nature

Random Numbers and God’s Nature

(p.59) 4 Random Numbers and God’s Nature
Abraham's Dice

James Bradley

Oxford University Press

“Randomness,” despite being a common term, does not unfortunately have a common definition. Disciplines have strongly varying intuitions about its meaning. Researchers in a branch of theoretical computer science known as “algorithmic information theory” have recently formalized what it means for a single number (not a process or event) to be random; they have also proven that in a certain technical sense almost all numbers are random. Mathematical classical realism, embraced by Augustine and many others, asserts that numbers are uncreated ideas in the mind of God, used in creating the world. It follows then that randomness, far from posing a challenge to divine providence, is an aspect of God’s nature. This remarkable idea has implications for how we understand randomness in the physical world.

Keywords:   Augustine, Christian Platonism, random numbers, mathematical realism, randomness, irreducibility, martingales

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .