Monday, 14 May 2007

God's Free Will

In this small chapter the question is pose "Does God have free will?" and a paradox with omnipotence is stated:

"..You’re going to say that if he sees his own future, then his choices are predetermined. Or, if he can’t see the future, then he’s not omnipotent." (page 17)

Unlike some females I know, before I set out to the shops I already know what I set out to buy. Today I went and had lunch but before I left my office I already knew that I was going to get the $4.50 pasta of the day. Granted that I didn't know what the pasta of the day was, but I did know that it was $4.50 (I also know that I can be pretty tight with my money sometimes). But my point is, that I knew what I was going to do before it happened.

I'm not proposing that God's foreknowledge of himself works this way, I am just saying that knowing something in the future doesn't negate your freedom. If I really wanted to I could of gotten a burger or had some chicken or pork tempura. I am still free to change my food selection, but I had a plan and so I kept with it. And God (which I am assuming to be perfect, as a lesser being wouldn't be God), would achieve what he sets out to do, at least from our perspective as we see time in a series of events, where as what God sets out to achieve is also already achieved cause he is outside of time.

The problem I see in this chapter is for God to have foreknowledge of himself. Since he is outside time, knowing the past, present and future is a moot point. To foreknow something means it hasn't happened yet, which means there is a constraint of time. But removing that constraint, God doesn't have foreknowledge of his future actions as he is already in the future. Also he doesn't need to reminisce on past events as he is also there as well. Everything is Now for him.


  1. Your first sentence led me to postulate whether or not free will came from a pharmacy with a prescription.

    Perhaps once i've taken some medication I will get round to posting an intelligent reply.

    (The wordplay is on the word meant to be does. Dose is entirely different)

  2. I have fixed the typo... I am sure there are more and that there will be many more to come.