This argument is valid:
Is "perfect" a predicative adjective? Maybe someone is a perfect speller, or a perfect shoe-tier, or some calculator is perfect at arithmetic for numbers less than 100000.
Two possible interpretations:A. x is perfect iff x is perfect at being the thing that x essentially isB. x is perfect iff x is absolutely perfectWhich premise of the argument is plausible or not depends on the interpretation.
Given A, then, is there any reason to believe that the angel Gabriel is not perfect at being essentially Gabriel?
Is your second premise supposed to be something like "If God had parts, then they would each be perfect"? If not, then premise 3 and the conclusion contradict premise 2.On the other hand, it seems to me that the very thing which makes your premise 2 "seem obviously true" casts doubt on the overall argument and might not cohere well with premise 3. Our intuition is that, if God is the only perfect being, and He has parts, then those parts are perfect by virtue of being parts of the perfect being. So, why think they have to each BE God, rather than just being perfect by being parts of God?Another way to put it would be this: If God is really a composite being, then we are attributing perfection to the composite, and therefore to each of the parts (unless we are imagining that they cumulatively achieve perfection BY COMPOSITION, which we clearly are NOT imagining, given the "obviousness" of something like your premise 2).
Matthew:Yeah, A makes the argument less plausible. Possibly, each photon is perfect at photonicity.Option B is better. The difficulty then is with the premise that the parts are perfect.Michael:It's standard to say that every object is an improper part of itself. So it's trivially true that God has a part. The question is whether God has proper parts.The other questions you raise are good ones.
1. Ought implies can2. We ought to be perfect, "even as [our] father in heaven is perfect"(Matt 5:48)3. Therefore, we can be perfect as our father in heaven is perfect4. Therefore, there is at least one possible world in which we are perfect as God is perfectPerhaps God has no proper parts because there is nothing else that is perfect (I know I, at least, am not perfect), but he does not essentially have no proper parts. Or, maybe moral perfection, even in a glorified body, is not absolute perfection- in the sense that there could only be one unique maximally great being.
Thanks: The citation of Mt 5:48 is conclusive that there is a kind of perfection that is possible for us.
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