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Thread: Interaction with perfect foreknowledge?

  1. #31
    Over 1000 post club logos_x's Avatar
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    By foreknowledge, for God, IMHO, it simply means being able to reasonably and with a high degree of certainty percieve what is going to occur at any given moment, unless you (as God) do something to change the outcome.

    Perfect exhaustive foreknowledge would mean that everything is foreknown, with no ability to change. All time becomes immutible, predetermined, and static.

  2. #32
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    If this is the sort of knowledge you are speaking of when you say God knows the future then there is no disagreement. But this is not what Arminians and Calvinists say at all because in fact you do not know what Knight will or will not do, you only have really good reason to believe what he will do and are completely convinced that you are right about what he will not change his mind. But having good reason to believe is not the same as knoweldge.

    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    Uh . . . ditto!

    I was just starting to type a response when I saw yours which is perfect.
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  3. #33
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by logos_x
    By foreknowledge, for God, IMHO, it simply means being able to reasonably and with a high degree of certainty percieve what is going to occur at any given moment, unless you (as God) do something to change the outcome.

    Perfect axhaustive foreknowledge would mean that everything is foreknown, with no ability to change. All time becomes immutible, predetermined, and static.
    Excellent!

    A very clean, concise description.
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  4. #34
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    Foreknowledge and divine interaction . . . . a mechanism to influence freewill.

    OK, so lets again focus in on how foreknowledge and divine interaction is used to affect our will. I would like to illustrate how foreknowledge and divine interaction are meaningless unless the future is unsettled and we have the real ability to make choices that are not predetermined.

    Imagine we are driving down a hot desert highway and there is nothing but miles and miles of emptiness. No towns, no gas stations, no rest stops . . . nothing!

    Then we see a billboard.



    The billboard says . . .

    "Joe's Diner 1 mile ahead

    Last chance to stop for 200 miles!"

    This billboard interacts with us in a form of foreknowledge. Prior to seeing the billboard we really had no idea what the future held for us, but now we do have an idea what the future holds for us, there will be a Diner in a mile or so and there won't be another place to stop for 200 miles! So why did the creators of the billboard construct the billboard and place it on the side of the road?

    The creators of the billboard did this to influence our freewill and future decisions. They desire that we stop and eat at their restaurant. And they also inform us that if we don't stop there we will not have another chance to stop for food for 200 more miles, that's about another 4 hours of driving time!

    Because of this billboard we are now presented with a choice. Should we stop at Joe's diner or wait another four hours? Our freewill is now being influenced by the billboard. The creators of the billboard don't know what we will choose to do - but certainly they want to influence our choice which is the ONLY reason they took the time to interact with us

    God's billboard to Adam.


    God created Adam and Eve in the garden. Adam and Eve had it good! No rules, awesome surroundings, great company, communion with God, etc. Now God, wanting to have UNcoerced love with His creation didn't want to lock Adam and Eve in a box forcing them to love Him with no other option. So God introduced a rule. A single rule for Adam to follow (or not follow). Don't eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Yet by introducing this rule it introduced the ability for Adam and Eve to do other than God's will for them. It introduced the ability for Adam and Eve to use their own will contrary to God's will for them. You might say that this instruction or rule was the birth of man's freewill.

    This instruction was like a billboard on the side of the road.



    The instruction was an interaction between God and Adam in which God gave Adam some foreknowledge... "for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."

    This foreknowledge that God dispensed to Adam had the TWO FOLD purpose that I outlined in my post number 13 of this thread.

    Purpose One: Attempt to influence Adam's will so that he doesn't eat from the tree and die spiritually.

    Purpose two: If Adam DOES eat from the tree and dies spiritually Adam will have renewed faith that God is who He says He is.

    If . . . (on the other hand) all of Adam's choices are already known by God (a millennia beforehand) and all of this history has already been seen by God, what appears to be an interaction between Adam and God becomes merely an interaction in appearance and nothing else. The entire point of God interacting with Adam is an attempt by God to influence Adam's will. If Adam's will can be influenced, there must be different courses of history possible - i.e., the future cannot be settled - even if only settled in the mind of God.

    Interaction between man and God is a lever or mechanism to effect and conform the will of man to the will of God.
    Last edited by Knight; March 27th, 2006 at 11:33 PM.
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  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    If this is the sort of knowledge you are speaking of when you say God knows the future then there is no disagreement. But this is not what Arminians and Calvinists say at all because in fact you do not know what Knight will or will not do, you only have really good reason to believe what he will do and are completely convinced that you are right about what he will not change his mind. But having good reason to believe is not the same as knoweldge.
    But I already addressed this. Of course my foreknowledge is flawed. But if I were God, it would be infinitely better.

    It might be boring for God if he already knows the future, but I don't see how we can say it's a logical fallacy. We might infer that there is a purpose to his intervention, but that doesn't mean he isn't just going through the motions, so that he can say "I told you so!" (purpose #2 of Knight's second post). He might also very well know that if he didn't intervene, we would do something different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Knight
    The creators of the billboard don't know what we will choose to do - but certainly they want to influence our choice which is the ONLY reason they took the time to interact with us
    I thought there were 2 purposes for intervention. What happened to the second one?

  7. #37
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptech
    I thought there were 2 purposes for intervention. What happened to the second one?
    Purpose One: Influence us to stop at their diner.

    Purpose Two: If we don't stop, we might regret our decision that we didn't stop when we are starving like dogs three hours later. Which in turn will make us that much more likely to stop at their diner if we ever drive down that road again.
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  8. #38
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptech
    But I already addressed this. Of course my foreknowledge is flawed. But if I were God, it would be infinitely better.
    What does infinitely better mean? As much better as it could be given the limitations of reality or absolute exhaustive foreknowledge? There's a difference.

    It might be boring for God if he already knows the future, but I don't see how we can say it's a logical fallacy.
    By itself it is not a logical fallacy. What is a logical fallacy is when you try to have both free will AND exhaustive foreknowledge. It's falacious from about a dozen different directions which have been and are being explored on other threads.

    We might infer that there is a purpose to his intervention, but that doesn't mean he isn't just going through the motions, so that he can say "I told you so!" (purpose #2 of Knight's second post).
    If this were so it would pretty much prove Knight's point wouldn't it?

    He might also very well know that if he didn't intervene, we would do something different.
    So what? How does this impact the argument being made?

    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    "The [open view] is an attempt to provide a more Biblically faithful, rationally coherent, and practically satisfying account of God and the divine-human relationship..." - Dr. John Sanders

  9. #39
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  10. #40
    Over 1000 post club logos_x's Avatar
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    Post #34 Knight

  11. #41
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    Thanks Shimei and logos, to be honest, there is a ton more that can be said on this topic and I can't wait to dig into it even more! I think there is something incredibly important about this topic of God's personal interaction with man. More to follow!
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  12. #42
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    I love the argument, Knight.

    And let me throw in another element. If God has exhaustive foreknowledge, when He decided to intervene in our affairs, did that change His foreknowledge, or did it stay the same?

    In other words, did God decide to send His Son in the flesh to save us before He knew we would need Him? Or did He instead see the outcome of everyone going to hell because of our sin, and then decide to send a savior? Either way, it seems like His exhaustive foreknowledge would have had to change. Either He had already known that we would need a savior from eternity past, or He had to know that we were all going to hell from eternity past.

    Both options seem ridiculous. The OV option (in conjunction with Knight's theory) would state a more logical supposition. That God knew we might sin, hoped we wouldn't and tried to warn us against it, but planned ahead in case we did anyway.
    Last edited by Turbo; June 28th, 2005 at 06:53 AM.
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  13. #43
    ...then I woke up. Knight's Avatar
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    This thread had gone off topic. I split it and created a new thread called The orthodoxy of open theism.
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  14. #44
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    Knight,
    A millennia ago did God's perfect exhaustive foreknowledge contain His interaction with us? And of course the answer must be a resounding YES otherwise the foreknowledge isn't perfect yet lacking (lacking the interaction).
    Did God perfectly foreknow His interactions with man infinitely into the past? And if so, doesn't that defeat the purpose of the interaction?
    You ask...
    "Did God perfectly foreknow His interactions with man infinitely into the past? And if so, doesn't that defeat the purpose of the interaction?"

    My answer to the 2nd question is no; it would not defeat the purpose of the interaction. Why would it's purpose be defeated? The interaction is for us so it is not purposeless. God has the foreknowledge, but He still interacts.

    The most common "unfulfilled" prophecy that I hear is the story of Jonah and Nineveh because Jonah says the city will be destroyed in 40 days and then it isn't destroyed because the people repend. I do not see this as an unfulfilled prophecy. I also believe that God's foreknowledge fits in with this story. God could know the people on Ninenveh would repent, but God still needed to interact with Jonah because without Jonah going the people would not have repented. You might say that if God knew the people would repent when Jonah went to them than why would God not simply tell Jonah the people WOULD repent instead of leaving that information out. God did this because it was a lesson for Jonah. If Jonah KNEW the people would repent it would not have taught him anything. He would have not increased his faith and trust in God.

    Honestly I'm not sure what other unfulfilled prophecies Open Theists use, but my guess is you could apply God's foreknowledge to them in the same way I just did with Jonah.

    Kevin

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    Sorry Knight, I didn't realize you started a new thread.

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