Walter J. Schultz | University of Northwestern, St. Paul
UNW Covid-19 Information

Walter J. Schultz, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Philosophy

Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Minnesota

M.A., Philosophy, University of Minnesota

B.A., Philosophy, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Contact Information

Nazareth Hall, N3063
3003 Snelling Ave. N
St Paul, MN 55113


I have been teaching philosophy courses at University of Northwestern since 2004, having taught at three different colleges before coming here. My favorite course is the Seminar on Jonathan Edwards. We concentrate on his philosophical argument for a particular view of God's purpose in creating the world. We situate his work in its 18th century philosophical and religious setting. I am nearly finished with a book on the topic.

Edwards has influenced me deeply and I deliberately attempt to conceptually connect my research to biblical theology, especially the fundamental idea that what gives the world and the Bible its unity is that God is acting progressively according to His plan for His purposes.

I am currently working on a new kind of formal semantics for systems of logic in addition to projects that relate fundamental concepts in science (such as causation and laws of nature) to divine action. All of these are conceptually related to the basic idea of God's acting for His purposes in Christ.

I thoroughly enjoy teaching and discussing things with my students. As I introduce them to this way of thinking in my courses by involving them in what interests me, I find their level of interest and learning increases significantly.

I am also interested in issues related to economic efficiency and justice. I emphasize these in my course in ethics.

Specialty Areas

  • Logic & Metaphysics
  • Jonathan Edwards' End of Creation

Professional Accomplishments

Select Publications

  • Jonathan Edwards’ Concerning The End for Which God Created the World: Exposition, Analysis, and Philosophical Implications. Göttingen, Germany: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2020. Read Chapter 12: "Divine Action and the Persistence of Physical Objects."
  • James C. McGlothlin, review of Jonathan Edwards’ Concerning The End for Which God Created the World: Exposition, Analysis, and Philosophical Implications. By Walter J. Schultz. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht Verlage, 2020. Philosophia Christi 22. 2 (2020), 353-357.
  • “Is Jonathan Edwards a Neo-Platonist? The Concept ofEmanation in End of Creation.” Jonathan Edwards Studies 8.1 (2018), 17–36.
  • “Divine Action, Ontological Dependence, and Truthmaking” Mereologies, Ontologies and Facets: The Categorial Structure of Reality. Paul M. W. Hackett, PhD (editor), (Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (2018), 201–233.
  • “The Incoherence of Divine Possibility Constructivism.” International Journal for the Philosophy of Religion (2018).
  • “A Counterexample Deity Theory.” Philosophia Christi 19.1 (2017), 1-21.
  • “Divine Compositionalism as Occasionalism.” Co-author: Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow, Occasionalism Revisited: New Essays from the Islamic and Western Philosophical Traditions. Nazif Muhtaroglu (ed), (Abu Dhabi, UAE: Kalam Research & Media, 2017), 219-236.
  • “Causation, Dispositions, and Physical Occasionalism.” Co-author: Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow, Zygon, The Journal of Science and Religion 52.4 (2017), 962-983.
  • “The Solubility of Salt: A Divine Action Account.” Co-author: Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow, Theology and Science 16.1 (2018), 1-19.
  • "The Metaphysics of Jonathan Edwards’ End of Creation." Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 56.2 (2016), 339”“59.
  • "Truth and Truth-makers." Philosophia Christi 17.1 (2015), 7-30.
  • "The Actual World From Platonism to Plans." Philosophia Christi 16.1 (2014), 81-100.
  • "Jonathan Edwards’ Philosophical Argument for God’s End in Creation." Jonathan Edwards Studies 4.3 (2014), 297-326.
  • "Jonathan Edwards’ Argument That God’s End in Creation Must Manifest His Supreme Self-regard." Jonathan Edwards Studies 4.1 (2014), 81-103.
  • Divine Compositionalism: A Form of Occasionalism or a Preferable Alternative View of Divine Action? Co-author: Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow Theology and Science 12.3 (2014), 216-235.
  • "Jonathan Edwards' Concept of an Original Ultimate End," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 56/1 (2013): 107-22.
  • "Jonathan Edwards' End of Creation and Spinoza's Conundrum," Jonathan Edwards Studies 2.2 (2012), 28-55.
  • The Moral Conditions of Economic Efficiency. (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Law, Cambridge University Press, 2001).
  • "What is the Relationship of Worldviews to Truth?" chapter in Christian Contours: How a Biblical Worldview Shapes the Mind and Heart. Douglas S. Huffman, ed., (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 2012).
  • "Toward a Realist Modal Structuralism: A Christian Philosophy of Mathematics," Philosophia Christi 12.1 (2010), 139-154.
  • "Dispositions, Capacities and Powers: A Christian Analysis," Philosophia Christi 11.2 (2009), 21-38.
  • "'No-Risk' Libertarian Freedom: A Refutation of the Free-will Defense," Philosophia Christi 10.1 (2008),183-199.
  • "Jonathan Edwards' End of Creation: An Exposition and Defense." Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 49.2 (2006), 247-271.
  • "Wittgenstein and Postmodern Epistemology." Wittgenstein's Philosophy of Mathematics. (Vienna: Verlag Hölder-Pichler-Temsky, 1993).


  • “Divine Aseity, Ontological Momentum, and the Persistence of Physical Objects.” Northwestern Scholarship Symposium, May 2018
  • "No Other Foundation.” Twin Cities Undergraduate Theology Conference, May 2018
  • Divine Action, Ontological Dependence, and Truthmaking.” Science and Theology Symposium, October 2017
  • “Jonathan Edwards = Idealism in End of Creation.Evangelical Theological Society, Providence, RU, November, 2017
  • “Divine Action, Ontological Dependence, and Truthmaking.” Metaphysics of Entanglement Project, University of Oxford, May 2017
  • “Divine Action, Ontological Dependence, and Truthmaking.” Northwestern Scholarship Symposium, May 2017
  • “The Concept of Emantion in Jonathan Edwards’ End of Creation.” Evangelical Theological Society, San Antonio, November 2016.
  • “The Incoherence of Possibility Constructivism.” 4th Biennial Philosophy of Religion Conference University of Glasgow, Scotland, May 2016.
  • “Causation, Dispositions, and Divine Action.” Co-presenter: Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow University of St. Thomas, St Paul, April, 2016.
  • "No Other Foundation." Loving God With Your Mind, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, February, 2016.
  • “The Metaphysics of Jonathan Edwards’ End of Creation.” Evangelical Theological Society, Atlanta, November 2015.
  • Metaphysics of Entanglement Project, University of Oxford, July 9, 2015.

Become a Student


Visit us on Campus

Schedule a Visit

Ask Questions & Connect

Contact Us