A longstanding question at the intersection of science, philosophy, and theology concerns God’s governance of the universe. Almost all theists agree that God created and sustains the cosmos. And many theologians believe that if fundamental physics were deterministic, then any further divine action would require God to violate the laws of nature. This has motivated a search for indeterministic gaps through which God might act without such a violation. Many now believe that quantum mechanics provides the ontologically random events that serve such a role.
I take a contrarian position. My project starts with an examination of two ideas just mentioned: the laws of nature and determinism. Philosophers of science recognize a wide variety of views on laws. Divine action generates different problems depending on which interpretation one holds. As for determinism, physicists eschew a metaphysical sense of the term in favor of one that is less familiar but mathematically precise. When a philosophically-informed view of laws is coupled with a physics-informed understanding of determinism, a new model of divine action emerges, one that does not restrict God’s action to indeterministic gaps.