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Thread: Summit Clock Experiment 2.0: Time is Absolute

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    pssst .. Johnny ... ignore, remember?
    Where is the evidence for a global flood?
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    TOL Subscriber Lon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    This is the typical understanding in modern times because primarily of Reformed theology but it is irrational as it commits a stolen concept fallacy.

    A stolen concept fallacy (a.k.a question begging and/or circular reasoning depending on the exact nature of the argument) has to do with the fact that most concepts are not islands unto themselves but rather are built upon other more foundation concepts. The concept of 'red', for example, is "genetically" related to the concept of 'color'. If you were to somehow deny the concept of 'color' while engaging the concept of 'red', whether you did so on purpose or not, you will have committed a stolen concept fallacy.

    The statement "God exists outside of time." commits the stolen concept because it engages the concept of existence while denying the concept of duration (i.e. time). Thus God cannot exist outside of time because to do so would mean He doesn't exist at all. The statement exhibits an internal contradiction and therefore must be false.

    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    Keeping with that question I'd say you were right but for two ensuing questions after:

    1) is time a container or is time rather a mathematical understanding (or both)?
    And considering: 2Pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    (Have an Augustinian question also regarding philosophy and theology, that came to mind here but I'll ask it after some more of this initial discussion).
    2) Is God's time the same as man's time? This verse (among others) suggests transcendence to me. In the same way we lose understanding of God's existence outside of time, we also lose him outside of gravity and space if I remember the discussions about this. Having an eternal God without beginning is already a time connundrum to His existence. Eternity past is already a challenge to our logical ability to grasp and ascertain. We are constrained to think and experience in linear time, but consider for a moment Apocalyptic literature. Certainly it is imagery, but John does see a preplay of future events. If you see a vision of the future doesn't this mean God translated John there? If God is constrained by time as it's suggested, how would this be possible?

  3. #63
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lonster
    Keeping with that question I'd say you were right but for two ensuing questions after:

    1) is time a container or is time rather a mathematical understanding (or both)?
    Time is duration and/or sequence. In other words, anything that is experiencing either duration of existence or a sequence of events can be said to be experiencing time.

    And considering: 2Pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    (Have an Augustinian question also regarding philosophy and theology, that came to mind here but I'll ask it after some more of this initial discussion).
    2 Peter 3:8 communicates that God is not limited by time the way we are. We are always running here and there attempting to get this and that done before we "run out of time". God has no such problems. God is patient enough to get a days work done in a thousand years if need be and powerful enough to get a thousand year worth of work done in a single day if He decides it is prudent to do so.

    And even if you find that interpretation debatable, the point is that there is no Biblical reason that one must interpret it in some way that is demonstrably irrational

    2) Is God's time the same as man's time?
    This question assumes that time is an independent thing rather than an idea. As such you could be asking about three dozen different questions.

    This verse (among others) suggests transcendence to me.
    But you would agree, would you not, that such an interpretation is not logically necessary, right? You'd pretty much have too because you already conceded that transcendence of time is a fallacious idea.

    In the same way we lose understanding of God's existence outside of time, we also lose him outside of gravity and space if I remember the discussions about this.
    On the contrary. If God is not physical then there is no reason to think that He would be subject to physical consideration such as space and gravity. There is no inherent internal contradiction in the idea that a super-natural creator transcends nature.

    Having an eternal God without beginning is already a time connundrum to His existence. Eternity past is already a challenge to our logical ability to grasp and ascertain.
    Indeed! This is a genuine rational paradox but that's just the point, it is RATIONAL and thus does not serve to falsify the position but only to demonstrate a lack of understand about some important aspect of it.

    I don't know whether you've ever heard of Zeno's paradox before but just to use it as an example of what I'm driving at here, the paradox seemed to show that motion was impossible and the logic used was absolutely flawless. It was a true rational paradox which went unsolved for well over a thousand years until someone finally applied Calculus to the problem and cracked it.

    I trust you see the point. A genuine paradox does not serve to falsify truth claims. No one who was sane, ever suggested that Zeno really had proven that all motion was an illusion. The infinite regression paradox does not prove that God is outside of time for the same resaon that Zeno had not proven that nothing could ever happen.

    We are constrained to think and experience in linear time, but consider for a moment Apocalyptic literature. Certainly it is imagery, but John does see a preplay of future events. If you see a vision of the future doesn't this mean God translated John there? If God is constrained by time as it's suggested, how would this be possible?
    Are you really unable to postulate any other possible way that God could have had John "see" such things other than transporting him through time?

    Further, the prophecies of the Bible that have to do with peoples and nations are subject to Jeremiah 18 and therefore may not ever come to pass. If Biblical prophecy was nothing more than prewritten history, Jeremiah 18 is a lie.

    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

  4. #64
    TOL Subscriber Lon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Time is duration and/or sequence. In other words, anything that is experiencing either duration of existence or a sequence of events can be said to be experiencing time.
    concur
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    2 Peter 3:8 communicates that God is not limited by time the way we are. We are always running here and there attempting to get this and that done before we "run out of time". God has no such problems. God is patient enough to get a days work done in a thousand years if need be and powerful enough to get a thousand year worth of work done in a single day if He decides it is prudent to do so.

    And even if you find that interpretation debatable, the point is that there is no Biblical reason that one must interpret it in some way that is demonstrably irrational.
    Define or elaborate "demonstrably irrational" please (don't want to assume here). It's gonna get good, I can feel it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    This question assumes that time is an independent thing rather than an idea. As such you could be asking about three dozen different questions.
    Rather it assumes one thing about the verse and asks from that perspective, but yes. It was way too open because I wanted to be able to discern and address after your post. I believe the former question will allow us to remove some of the discussion as we move along.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    But you would agree, would you not, that such an interpretation is not logically necessary, right? You'd pretty much have too because you already conceded that transcendence of time is a fallacious idea. .
    Unfortunately with a few qualifiers. "What is good for the goose isn't always good for the gander"
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    On the contrary. If God is not physical then there is no reason to think that He would be subject to physical consideration such as space and gravity. There is no inherent internal contradiction in the idea that a super-natural creator transcends nature..
    There are some who have a difficulty grasping this concept in a similar fashion however so it's a good point to consider as it relates to time. A correlation idea merely.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Indeed! This is a genuine rational paradox but that's just the point, it is RATIONAL and thus does not serve to falsify the position but only to demonstrate a lack of understand about some important aspect of it.
    True, but I think this kind of rationality can be applied to the time consideration overall in a similar fashion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    I don't know whether you've ever heard of Zeno's paradox before but just to use it as an example of what I'm driving at here, the paradox seemed to show that motion was impossible and the logic used was absolutely flawless. It was a true rational paradox which went unsolved for well over a thousand years until someone finally applied Calculus to the problem and cracked it.

    I trust you see the point. A genuine paradox does not serve to falsify truth claims. No one who was sane, ever suggested that Zeno really had proven that all motion was an illusion. The infinite regression paradox does not prove that God is outside of time for the same resaon that Zeno had not proven that nothing could ever happen.
    In passing only, when it gets to science I'm an amatuer, but I can grasp the gist here.
    My discussion would be that my view of God is closed moreso than open, but that leads away from this discussion. However it does color my perception and must be admitted freely. The truth here for me is that I believe He is both relative and transcendent to time.
    There are science theories that suggest transcendence is a possible concept (if I am understanding them correctly).
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Are you really unable to postulate any other possible way that God could have had John "see" such things other than transporting him through time?
    Certainly there are other scenarios that could take this into account, but initial inclination is to take this at face value.
    Similarly:"before Abraham was I Am.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Further, the prophecies of the Bible that have to do with peoples and nations are subject to Jeremiah 18 and therefore may not ever come to pass. If Biblical prophecy was nothing more than prewritten history, Jeremiah 18 is a lie.
    But didn't they come to pass? or are you looking to something else?
    In Him

  5. #65
    TOL Subscriber Lon's Avatar
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    Incidentally, this link as well as others that run from it and any that you could think of would be a big help and actually help us discuss this more expeditiously.

    http://www.apostolic.net/biblicalstu...etranscend.htm

    This one is a bit older:
    http://www.findarticles.com/p/articl...10/ai_n8826325

    This one is very long but is a collegiate discussion (It does remove some steam however on imperical notions)http://www.iep.utm.edu/t/time.htm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lonster
    Define or elaborate "demonstrably irrational" please (don't want to assume here). It's gonna get good, I can feel it.
    Well like I did earlier with the Stolen Concept Fallacy. If the idea that existence outside of time is irrational, as I have demonstrated it to be, then it cannot be Biblical. The Bible does not teach irrational doctrines, wouldn't you agree?

    There are some who have a difficulty grasping this concept in a similar fashion however so it's a good point to consider as it relates to time. A correlation idea merely.
    There is no corollary because time is not a natural consideration but a rational one. That is to say, it is an idea, not a created thing like the Earth or matter or electricity.

    True, but I think this kind of rationality can be applied to the time consideration overall in a similar fashion.
    Not without committing the stolen concept fallacy it can't.

    In passing only, when it gets to science I'm an amatuer, but I can grasp the gist here.
    My discussion would be that my view of God is closed moreso than open, but that leads away from this discussion. However it does color my perception and must be admitted freely. The truth here for me is that I believe He is both relative and transcendent to time.
    There are science theories that suggest transcendence is a possible concept (if I am understanding them correctly).
    As I have already pointed out, the truth cannot be irrational. In order for any such theory to be rationally viable one would have to explain how one might exist without duration. A difficult task to say the least.

    Certainly there are other scenarios that could take this into account, but initial inclination is to take this at face value.
    Face value? Where in the text does it say that John was transported through time? It talks a lot about John seeing visions but nowhere does it suggest on its face that John ever left his living room sofa.

    Similarly:"before Abraham was I Am.
    "I Am" is God's name, which Jesus was taking for Himself. This comment was Jesus' way of directly claiming to be God and claiming to have been God since before Abraham existed (i.e. the implication is that He is and always has been God).. He is not saying that He currently exists in the past. Such a comment would be self-contradictory.

    But didn't they come to pass? or are you looking to something else?
    In Him
    There are several Biblical prophecies which did not come to pass as stated. The book of Jonah is all about one of them, Jesus' prophecy in Matthew 16:28 is another and there are several more. All of them have to do with a nation either repenting, as in the case of Nineveh, or being evil as in the case of Israel, and thereby causing God to change His mind concerning that which He said He would do in relation to that nation per the principle described in detail in Jeremiah 18 (Jeremiah 18 is one of the most important chapters in the whole Bible, by the way.)

    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

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    TOL Subscriber Lon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Well like I did earlier with the Stolen Concept Fallacy. If the idea that existence outside of time is irrational, as I have demonstrated it to be, then it cannot be Biblical. The Bible does not teach irrational doctrines, wouldn't you agree?
    Not entirely, and I'm glad you have a philosophy background for this because it will delve into irrational territory. I'm an irrational rationalist, which is going to probably exasperate you, but it seems best to me to consider from this perspective. I'll try to be brief here but it does need explanation: 1) I believe our sensibilities are finite, that is to say that there are questions that we cannot answer or even set up a proposition for understanding. There are many reasons for this but a few scriptures point to this: 1cor13 we see, but through a dim glass. 1John3 When we see Him (not now) we 'then' will know.
    He has chosen the foolish things to confound. It is not for you to know.......
    2) I believe our intellect is not intact. Specifically: All of creation groans. My mind is a created item, I cannot perceive that it wouldn't be subject to problematic consideration. I'm a reasonably intelligent person or so the tests would indicate, but I don't take alot of comfort in or stock in all of my perceptions. I have doubts (intellectual misgivings, as I hope I share in common with the entire human race), incorrect ideologies (here might be a case in point) and memory limitations. I also have reasoning limitations so I don't tend to get worked up over rationality contradictions. I do try to solve them with the capacity I've been given, but in the end I rationally realize there are going to be irreconcilable dilemmas that I will not, cannot explain. In considering time, a topic that is to the best of my knowlege, propositioning still in hot debate with much room left for irrationality, if not irreconcilable differences of opinion from just about every corner, but certainly philosophy, theology, and science.



    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    There is no corollary because time is not a natural consideration but a rational one. That is to say, it is an idea, not a created thing like the Earth or matter or electricity.
    [QUOTE=Clete]
    This works for me as I cannot remember the exact discussion of this correlated view nor the argument.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Not without committing the stolen concept fallacy it can't.As I have already pointed out, the truth cannot be irrational. In order for any such theory to be rationally viable one would have to explain how one might exist without duration. A difficult task to say the least.
    I either understand this or don't at all (I might have a misconception here so if it exasperates don't hesitate to say so).
    With the idea of color and red, the two ideas are part of the same discussion of category.
    If I say that I am red with anger however, you'd understand something completely different. The color of emotion is really not talking about a physical color at all. I'm so blue (even though I'm not really 'so' blue at all and it has nothing to do with color spectrum). Rather than pointing to a stolen concept, it points to a different misconception that is lost in the previous logic that color must be associated with red.

    In regards to time specifically, I rather understand the perception of time and am constrained to incremental steps with physical properties that demand I remain in incremental sequence (this is a physical property of space but I can only perceive time). I am not certain that 1) our understanding of time is inerrant 2) that what I understand to be rational must necessarily apply to God even if it becomes irrational to do so because my rational mind can rationalize irrationality. We may be sincere, be we can all be sincerely wrong. I want to be rational and right, but at the same time (again my theological stance) I feel constrained by the fact that I am only able to see through a dark glass. I have to believe God must necessarily have intervened with His thoughts or we'd be intellectually lost and rationally lost because we are not rational beings without Him.
    I pray this does not become exasperating, but rationality is not my pinacle. Rather glorifying God is my imperative. I certainly believe rational thought is very important, but it is not the pinacle of importance for me if my mind is truly subject to the fall. How much I am able to rationalize is the important question. Regardless I have to believe God has interjected Himself into our rationality and logical capacity, that He acts in a way that most often can be seen rationally, and that He desires for us to know Him if even with limited capacity. That said, He's a little too big for my rationality to often encapsulate.


    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    Face value? Where in the text does it say that John was transported through time? It talks a lot about John seeing visions but nowhere does it suggest on its face that John ever left his living room sofa.


    "I Am" is God's name, which Jesus was taking for Himself. This comment was Jesus' way of directly claiming to be God and claiming to have been God since before Abraham existed (i.e. the implication is that He is and always has been God).. He is not saying that He currently exists in the past. Such a comment would be self-contradictory.
    Thanks for this. It helps me to see that we both approach this from a similar perspective with differing conclusion. It doesn't matter at all if it was a physical transportation or a mental one. I do recognize the OV/PM view here but our bases are different. I see this as a view of future events as if they had already happened, you, I believe, see them as a possibilty scenario if I am understanding that view.

    I always ask the second question. "I know what I think this means, but does it mean what 'I' think it means?" If I didn't ask this second question at least (which leads to many others) I wouldn't even be in this discussion because a reformed theological perspective already negates it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete
    There are several Biblical prophecies which did not come to pass as stated. The book of Jonah is all about one of them, Jesus' prophecy in Matthew 16:28 is another and there are several more. All of them have to do with a nation either repenting, as in the case of Nineveh, or being evil as in the case of Israel, and thereby causing God to change His mind concerning that which He said He would do in relation to that nation per the principle described in detail in Jeremiah 18 (Jeremiah 18 is one of the most important chapters in the whole Bible, by the way.)

    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    Not bad thinking from one angle but theology is not silent on this issue.
    A discussion on this topic would necessarily rabbit trail off the main. I don't believe there is a philosophical dilemma as it is answered in theology. For this thread however, it would be difficult for me to address on philosophy merits alone.
    Also resting in Him
    Lon
    Last edited by Lon; January 24th, 2007 at 10:32 PM.

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    Teenage Adaptive Ninja Turtle Stripe's Avatar
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    It sounds like you want to believe you have an excuse for your inability to understand.
    Where is the evidence for a global flood?
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    TOL Subscriber Lon's Avatar
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    Are we 'too' academic

    Quote Originally Posted by stipe
    It sounds like you want to believe you have an excuse for your inability to understand.
    That's fair. Let me ask another question then. Premise: It is proven that a large percentage of people cannot even think or conceive on a metaphysical level. I believe the OV stance here to not be plain and must require a philosophical understanding. Here then, you will have a large portion of your congregations that will ascend to the truth without perception.

    Question: If close to half of the body is left out of this discussion and understanding, how will you reach this half with truth?

    Bob E. is right when he says he has an educated audience. Leaving that idea behind, the question rephrased: are we ignoring a large portion of our congregation or asking them to accept on faith 'without' rationalization?
    I cannot believe that God has made this as complicated as all that.

    Your statement is fair, but......
    Last edited by Lon; January 25th, 2007 at 06:14 AM. Reason: Clarity, spelling, a better graciousness,title

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    Your premise is incorrect. Everyone is offered the same chance, accept Christ or spend an eternity in hell. Metaphysics do not enter into calculations.
    Where is the evidence for a global flood?
    E≈mc2
    When the world is a monster
    Bad to swallow you whole
    Kick the clay that holds the teeth in
    Throw your trolls out the door

    "The waters under the 'expanse' were under the crust."
    -Bob B.


  11. #71
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lonster
    Not entirely, and I'm glad you have a philosophy background for this because it will delve into irrational territory. I'm an irrational rationalist, which is going to probably exasperate you, but it seems best to me to consider from this perspective. I'll try to be brief here but it does need explanation: 1) I believe our sensibilities are finite, that is to say that there are questions that we cannot answer or even set up a proposition for understanding. There are many reasons for this but a few scriptures point to this: 1cor13 we see, but through a dim glass. 1John3 When we see Him (not now) we 'then' will know.
    He has chosen the foolish things to confound. It is not for you to know.......
    2) I believe our intellect is not intact. Specifically: All of creation groans. My mind is a created item, I cannot perceive that it wouldn't be subject to problematic consideration. I'm a reasonably intelligent person or so the tests would indicate, but I don't take alot of comfort in or stock in all of my perceptions. I have doubts (intellectual misgivings, as I hope I share in common with the entire human race), incorrect ideologies (here might be a case in point) and memory limitations. I also have reasoning limitations so I don't tend to get worked up over rationality contradictions. I do try to solve them with the capacity I've been given, but in the end I rationally realize there are going to be irreconcilable dilemmas that I will not, cannot explain. In considering time, a topic that is to the best of my knowlege, propositioning still in hot debate with much room left for irrationality, if not irreconcilable differences of opinion from just about every corner, but certainly philosophy, theology, and science.
    Lonster, look, I understand that you are simply communicating what you believe in the most honest way you can but what is there to say in response to this? How could I or anyone every falsify anything you say if this is how you allow yourself to think?
    If you permit antinomy to exist within your theology then nothing you believe can ever be falsified because counter examples and logical arguments or even Biblical arguments against what you believe don't constitute proof that you're wrong, only that someone hasn't the ability to understand how your are right!

    This attitude toward rationality is almost pandemic among Reformed believers (i.e. Calvinists), which, if you ask me, doesn't make any sense given Martin Luther's attitude toward what he called "plain reason". He refused to recant his beliefs UNLESS shown by "Scripture AND plain reason". And the two MUST come together or else there is just no way that anyone could ever tell which of the hundreds of Christian sects are wacko and which are closer to the truth.

    Now as for our being sinful and imperfect creatures, yes, of course we are sinful and yes it most certainly cannot be denied that we are not as smart as we would be had Adam not eaten of that Tree in the Garden of Eden but that only makes sound reason all the more important! It is the only tool, I say again, it is THE ONLY TOOL that we have to separate our sinful passions and our fleshly pride from a pursuit of the truth. Not even the Bible can be rightly understood or applied without the use of sound reason.

    Further, did you realize that the Bible teaches us that God is Logic? In the same sense that God is Love, God is also Logic. The Bible comes right out and says it as plain as day but out English Bible's obscures the passage to the point that most people would think you were nuts if you uttered the phrase "Logic is God" but that is precisely what the Bible says in the first chapter of John. Notice how the following passage is talks about how the universe was made in a logical fashion and without logic there is no understanding or comprehension...

    John 1:1 In the beginning was Logic (Logos), and Logic was with God, and Logic was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

    14 And Logic became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

    To reject logic is to reject the very light of the world; it is to reject the Son of God Himself.

    With the idea of color and red, the two ideas are part of the same discussion of category.
    If I say that I am red with anger however, you'd understand something completely different. The color of emotion is really not talking about a physical color at all. I'm so blue (even though I'm not really 'so' blue at all and it has nothing to do with color spectrum). Rather than pointing to a stolen concept, it points to a different misconception that is lost in the previous logic that color must be associated with red.
    The law of contradiction states, in the words of Aristotle, that "one cannot say of something that it is and that it is not in the same respect and at the same time"

    So you are correct, if you are using the words "red" or "blue" or "yellow" or whatever in some other context than the actual color that one sees with the eyes then there is probably not any sort of contradiction. But be that as it may, there can be no such thing as yellow darkness or existence without duration (i.e. time).

    In regards to time specifically, I rather understand the perception of time and am constrained to incremental steps with physical properties that demand I remain in incremental sequence (this is a physical property of space but I can only perceive time). I am not certain that 1) our understanding of time is inerrant 2) that what I understand to be rational must necessarily apply to God even if it becomes irrational to do so because my rational mind can rationalize irrationality. We may be sincere, be we can all be sincerely wrong. I want to be rational and right, but at the same time (again my theological stance) I feel constrained by the fact that I am only able to see through a dark glass. I have to believe God must necessarily have intervened with His thoughts or we'd be intellectually lost and rationally lost because we are not rational beings without Him.
    "We are not rational being without Him." - What a great summary of John chapter 1!
    Let me put it too you in the form of a question...

    If I cannot persuade you on rational grounds then how can I persuade you at all?

    I pray this does not become exasperating, but rationality is not my pinacle. Rather glorifying God is my imperative.
    In my view, since God the Son is Logic, you cannot do the latter without the former.

    I certainly believe rational thought is very important, but it is not the pinacle of importance for me if my mind is truly subject to the fall. How much I am able to rationalize is the important question. Regardless I have to believe God has interjected Himself into our rationality and logical capacity, that He acts in a way that most often can be seen rationally, and that He desires for us to know Him if even with limited capacity. That said, He's a little too big for my rationality to often encapsulate.
    God is rationality Lonster! God NEVER acts in an irrational manner because He cannot deny Himself or act contrary to His nature. If this were not so, God would be arbitrary and utterly unknowable. Indeed, it is the very fact that rationality flows from the person of God that we are able to know that logic works in the first place. If God is "super-logical" (i.e. above logic) then we are lost in a world of complete ignorance.

    Thanks for this. It helps me to see that we both approach this from a similar perspective with differing conclusion. It doesn't matter at all if it was a physical transportation or a mental one. I do recognize the OV/PM view here but our bases are different.
    Okay, call me stupid if you like (not really) but I just can't figure out what the "PM" part of OV/PM is referring too. I know the OV means Open View but can you clue me in on what PM means?

    I see this as a view of future events as if they had already happened, you, I believe, see them as a possibility scenario if I am understanding that view.
    Yes, possible and even probable but not pre-written history.

    I always ask the second question. "I know what I think this means, but does it mean what 'I' think it means?" If I didn't ask this second question at least (which leads to many others) I wouldn't even be in this discussion because a reformed theological perspective already negates it.
    Wow! An intellectually honest Calvinist! I don't mean to insult your fellow Calvinists but around here such a beast as yourself is a rare sight indeed!

    If you stick around TOL for very long, might I be so bold as to say that if you keep that up you won't be a Calvinist for very much longer.

    Not bad thinking from one angle but theology is not silent on this issue.
    A discussion on this topic would necessarily rabbit trail off the main. I don't believe there is a philosophical dilemma as it is answered in theology. For this thread however, it would be difficult for me to address on philosophy merits alone.
    I'm curious to know what you mean when you say "theology is not silent on this issue".
    Do you mean that the Bible is not silent or are you actually talking about the intellectual discipline of interpreting the Bible called "theology"?

    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

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lonster
    That's fair. Let me ask another question then. Premise: It is proven that a large percentage of people cannot even think or conceive on a metaphysical level. I believe the OV stance here to not be plain and must require a philosophical understanding. Here then, you will have a large portion of your congregations that will ascend to the truth without perception.

    Question: If close to half of the body is left out of this discussion and understanding, how will you reach this half with truth?

    Bob E. is right when he says he has an educated audience. Leaving that idea behind, the question rephrased: are we ignoring a large portion of our congregation or asking them to accept on faith 'without' rationalization?
    I cannot believe that God has made this as complicated as all that.

    Your statement is fair, but......
    I do not concede your premise about the Open View being such a lofty and philosophically complex position. I would agree that it constitutes a paradigm shift but the theology is simple enough for my six year old to understand. It isn't philosophy that one needs to get it, it's just the removal of the Reformed tinted classes.

    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

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    Well, you have to recognize the shock value for what it is I hope. When you come to Reformed theology there are watershed truthes that are taken for truth and certainly Augustine influences those.

    I hope that you see that I said "irrational rationalist" rather than rational irrationalist, which places more emphasis on not being able to know anything (PM Post Modernism).

    Rather what I was setting up here is that I often get into a logical corner that becomes difficult to conceptualize.

    Let's take the rock analogy for a moment. It was in philosophy that I first heard the question: "Can God make a rock He cannot pick up." My philosoophy teacher was an atheist and loved challenging our beliefs at every opportunity. It was grueling and I hated it because the logic was hard to deny. As I considered the quesion, my first inclination was "God can do anything, so "Yep." The professor then said, "Could he then pick it up?" I said "????" At that point I simply said, I cannot rationalize this answer, and while it is troubling I don't care, I'd rather be irrational at this point and give God glory regardless of whether it disturbs my logical mind or not irrational rationalism: "I don't know and cannot conceive the answer, but God is going to stay God here regardless of what I understand."

    Later I realized through discussion that the question was illogical itself. The question was wrong. That being said, I still like my first answer because it was honest and it demanded a great trust and faith until God could reveal it to me.

    Growing up, my parents did not tell me everything. The answer sometimes was merely "Because I said so, or "when you are older." Frustrating. Sometimes with God, "Because I said so" is going to be good enough for me regardless if I understand this or not.

    I love logic and believe that God is definitely rational, but sometimes He appears irrational just as my parents sometimes seemed unreasonable or rational to me. What I've learned through experience is that sometimes my parents actually were irrational, but that God never is, He just appears that way because of inability to understand or perceive. Now when I get to a perplexing dilemma, if I cannot understand it, I'm okay wth the irrationality of it. And here is the crux, and I hope it all makes sense after this: It isn't that I believe God is irrational, I just don't have the ability at the time to see it rationally and I'm able to say" This is irrational to me, but I believe God will take care of this, if not now, soon." There are some questions I have to believe that are just not going to be answered specifically because Paul's verse says we cannot help but see through a dark glass on the things God has not made known. 1John tells us we will one day know Him as we are fully known. This to me says quite plainly there are unknowable truths that one day will be revealed. On this particular issue at hand, I have to reconcile a lot of scripture ideas and truths. I am not saying I will suddenly believe that an OV is the only way because I've held my Reformed view for a very long time and every precious truth of God has come to me through this lense. It would be very very difficult for me to ascent that God is constrained to time. It would be very very difficult for me to ascend to a view that God does not know the future 100%. Therefore if you are able to rationally convince me that this is somehow even impossible, I'd still have a lifetime of devotions in scripture to consider. I'm asking the second question here, but I just wanted you both to understand what my position here is.

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    Reformed theology

    I'm curious to know what you mean when you say "theology is not silent on this issue".
    Do you mean that the Bible is not silent or are you actually talking about the intellectual discipline of interpreting the Bible called "theology"?
    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    I KNEW it had rabbit trailing potential!
    "Reformed Theology" I was saying that Reformed Theology answers these questions in a way that allows them to remain without malignancy, or better said, that they are sufficiently explained to bring truth and glorify Him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stipe
    Your premise is incorrect. Everyone is offered the same chance, accept Christ or spend an eternity in hell. Metaphysics do not enter into calculations.
    Maybe Clete could explain my view better, but I don't think you are understanding my point. If I were to accept that God is constrained to time, because He cannot exist outside of it, I'm saying that it is a concept that is proved on a metaphysical plane. My mind is already asking if it could be an incorrect perception of time that leads to this dichotomy. In other words, is it possible that this too could be the 'illogical question?'

    In honesty, I see the truth of the irrationality of God not being constrained to time, just as I did when I first saw the one that was truly an illogical question. My professor then was so dishonest as to not even tell us it was an illogical question (he never did). He rather delighted in mistruth for the sake of troubling the believer. It was sick. At that time I HAD to stay irrational (because I could not rationalize anything. We were bombarded) and what this did for me, was made me realize that regarding my IQ, I wasn't as brilliant as I believed I was. I spent a great deal of money on Francis Schaffer and CS Lewis and other books just to get some kind of perspective on the troubling philosophical questions from a believer but didn't find that they actually spoke to the "Impossible Question." For a year+ I found great comfort in Paul and John's words. I found great comfort that Paul and John didn't know everything either. I found great comfort in the idea that God could make a rock that He couldn't pick up, and then He could pick it up regardless of what I thought. I found great comfort that eternity past was inconceivable because it made my God so much bigger for it. I had to learn to live with irrationality which I hated desperately at first,because before this I would have said I was rational and intelligent. Not being able to explain truth was horrible, especially where a rational God is concerned. The one thing I did become comfortable with, without perception, was that God was true, rational, and right regardless. I took comfort in the fact that God knows that answer to this dliemma even if I don't. Faith became the issue. Am I willing to trust God no matter what?

    I am open to God's truth, but if I am able to be convinced that it is logically impossible for God to exist outside of time, I'm going to ask a ton of questions and I wouldn't want you to be exasperated that you'd probably be in discussion for the long haul. In other words, this has all been a purposeful discussion to reveal to you that even acknowledging a antithetical truth woud/must overcome tremendous hurdles in my logical structures of belief from a reformed perspective. You have the likes of John Piper, Millard Erickson, and J.I. Packer who have greatly influenced Reformed theology, scripture references and Biblical understandings, early church writings, and tradition, that all place hurdles in this discussion.

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