Warren Christian Apologetics Center
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Articles - Miscellanea

Posts in Mac Deaver
A Few Thoughts On Probability

When I was training gospel preachers, I would at times tell them the following: The affirmation of a probability is the admission of the possibility of the contradictory. What does that precisely mean? It means that when a person asserts that something is only probable, he is already saying at the same time what is being asserted may not be correct at all. In other words, if I say that I will probably attend a ball game tonight, it is also the case that I may not attend that ball game. The contradictory (I may not attend) is possible just as the affirmation (I will probably attend) is possible and stated as a probability. The chances of the occurrence of my attending or not attending do not cancel this truth: When I say that something is probably the case, I am also saying that it is possible that it may not be the case at all.

A second fundamental point needs to be stated just here: Nothing ever probably occurs in the real world external to the human mind. Probability is not a characteristic or an attribute of the world in which we live. I am afraid that in the discussion of probability this truth is sometimes not realized.

Whatever happens—happens. Whatever does not happen—does not happen. When it happens or does not happen, probability is nowhere to be found in the event.

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