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Thread: For Lighthouse: When did God become Omniscient

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    For Lighthouse: When did God become Omniscient

    When did 1 John 3:20 become true? When did God begin to "know all things?"

    Lighthouse, who has closed the thread he started to discuss this issue after only 8 posts (hmmm, I wonder why....), has said that he thinks that 1 John 3:20 isn't true prior to Genesis 18. He thinks that the narrative passage where God comes down to judge Sodom and Gomorrah disproves that God can knew all things during that timeframe. You can see the whole discussion here.

    My questions are fourfold.

    1. Is this a common belief of the Open Theists on this board?
    2. If it is, then when did God become omniscient? When does 1 John 3:20 become true of God?
    3. Does scripture record the event where God became omniscient? If so, were in scripture do we find this?
    4. Isn't this really more in line with process theology than it is open theism?
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    Does Whatever A Light-House Can Lighthouse's Avatar
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    I'm not playing your game.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
    I'm not playing your game.
    You see, that may be one of the most profound differences between you and I. I don't think God's word is a "game" and I don't think that playing fast and loose with God's word should be taken lightly.

    If you are going to make novel claims, like the one you made when you asserted that 1 John 3:20 becomes true of God sometime after Genesis 18, then you are going to be asked to back those claims up.

    This isn't kindergarten and the bible isn't Candy-Land.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dialogos View Post
    When did 1 John 3:20 become true? When did God begin to "know all things?"

    Lighthouse, who has closed the thread he started to discuss this issue after only 8 posts (hmmm, I wonder why....), has said that he thinks that 1 John 3:20 isn't true prior to Genesis 18. He thinks that the narrative passage where God comes down to judge Sodom and Gomorrah disproves that God can knew all things during that timeframe. You can see the whole discussion here.

    My questions are fourfold.

    1. Is this a common belief of the Open Theists on this board?
    2. If it is, then when did God become omniscient? When does 1 John 3:20 become true of God?
    3. Does scripture record the event where God became omniscient? If so, were in scripture do we find this?
    4. Isn't this really more in line with process theology than it is open theism?
    I have studied Open Theism for over 30 years. I have never heard of LH theory until now and can assure you most or all Open Theists, especially academic, credible ones, would not state his view. Many would not agree with his view of Gen. 18 and also not agree with his unique caveat that God knows what He wants to know when He wants to (vs God knows all that is knowable).

    1. This board has non-academic Open Theists influenced by Enyart, etc. They also hold to MAD, a dispensational view most would reject. They are generically right about Open Theism, but have views on details that are probably limited to their personal opinion vs published OT literature. They are wrong about MAD (IMHO).

    2. God is eternal and has always been omniscient. When He created free moral agents, He voluntarily limited the possible objects of certain knowledge, since contingent choices may or may not obtain/happen. God is not ignorant of anything and knows all that is knowable. The future is inherently not settled, known as possible, probable vs actual/certain in advance (except what God unilaterally settles in His mind that He brings to pass by His ability vs crystal ball).

    The context of I Jn. proof text is that God knows our hearts. This is present/past knowledge (fully knowable in Open Theism), not future foreknowledge. It is not a proof text for exhaustive definite foreknowledge which is logically/biblically not possible with libertarian free will (EDF/LFW). It is similar to the phrase about nothing being impossible for God. It is impossible for God to cease to exist. It is impossible for God to create square circles or married bachelors (logical absurdities). The context is about salvation, not doing the undoable. Omniscience does not mean that God knows the unknowable (where Alice in Wonderland is, etc.).

    3. God has always been omniscient. LH is speculating in a nonsensical way that denies omniscience, even by Open Theism standards (that does limit God's knowledge to reality, not absurdity).

    4. Process Thought is more extreme and indefensible than OT. Some OT (Thomas Jay Oord, for e.g.) do lean to Process friendly ideas.

    I would not consider LH the authority on standard Open Theism. He gets much of it right, but is muddled on some of the details (not helping our uphill cause).
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    Does Whatever A Light-House Can Lighthouse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by godrulz View Post
    I have studied Open Theism for over 30 years. I have never heard of LH theory until now and can assure you most or all Open Theists, especially academic, credible ones, would not state his view. Many would not agree with his view of Gen. 18 and also not agree with his unique caveat that God knows what He wants to know when He wants to (vs God knows all that is knowable).

    1. This board has non-academic Open Theists influenced by Enyart, etc. They also hold to MAD, a dispensational view most would reject. They are generically right about Open Theism, but have views on details that are probably limited to their personal opinion vs published OT literature. They are wrong about MAD (IMHO).

    2. God is eternal and has always been omniscient. When He created free moral agents, He voluntarily limited the possible objects of certain knowledge, since contingent choices may or may not obtain/happen. God is not ignorant of anything and knows all that is knowable. The future is inherently not settled, known as possible, probable vs actual/certain in advance (except what God unilaterally settles in His mind that He brings to pass by His ability vs crystal ball).

    The context of I Jn. proof text is that God knows our hearts. This is present/past knowledge (fully knowable in Open Theism), not future foreknowledge. It is not a proof text for exhaustive definite foreknowledge which is logically/biblically not possible with libertarian free will (EDF/LFW). It is similar to the phrase about nothing being impossible for God. It is impossible for God to cease to exist. It is impossible for God to create square circles or married bachelors (logical absurdities). The context is about salvation, not doing the undoable. Omniscience does not mean that God knows the unknowable (where Alice in Wonderland is, etc.).

    3. God has always been omniscient. LH is speculating in a nonsensical way that denies omniscience, even by Open Theism standards (that does limit God's knowledge to reality, not absurdity).

    4. Process Thought is more extreme and indefensible than OT. Some OT (Thomas Jay Oord, for e.g.) do lean to Process friendly ideas.

    I would not consider LH the authority on standard Open Theism. He gets much of it right, but is muddled on some of the details (not helping our uphill cause).
    Shame on you for falling for Dialogos straw men accusations.

    Though I can't say I'm surprised, you were always a gullible git.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
    Shame on you for falling for Dialogos straw men accusations.
    I don't think you understand what a "straw man" argument is. A straw man argument, by definition, is a misrepresentation of another's position, argument or opinion that can easily be pushed down.

    Your position is easily pushed down, but it isn't a misrepresentation of what you believe.

    I asked:
    Quote Originally Posted by Lil ol' me
    Either (A) 1 John 3:20 is somehow historically bound in that God somehow started knowing the hearts of all men after Genesis 18 or (B) 1 John 3:20 is simply wrong and Genesis 18 proves it or (C) 1 John 3:20 is true, it has always been true since creation and God's coming down to "see" the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah is not a sign that God is ignorant of the hearts of the Sodomites (which would have accused them of their sin according to Romans 2:15), it is a sign that God has come down to personally execute judgment, which He has shown He is willing to do to demonstrate the gravity of sin (see Gen 11:7).

    I choose option C.

    Which do you choose?
    Your answer was:

    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse
    A. And I've already explained why.
    By your own admission you believe that 1 John 3:20 wasn't true of God before Genesis 18. My representation of your view accords fully with the answer you gave in the thread you created for your's truly and then closed prematurely (presumably because you didn't like the points being made or the questions being asked).

    Have you changed your mind?

    Were you just speaking hastily?

    Help us out here Lighthouse. My representation of what you believe comes straight out of the answer you gave to my question in the other thread. Just because your answer was foolish doesn't make my representation of it a "straw man."

    If however, you'd like to explain your view you are more than welcome to do so.

    When did God start knowing all of the hearts of men, and can you show us this event in scripture?

    I asked the other questions three questions in the opening post in order to see if your understanding of God's sovereignty was representative of the open view in general or representative of the TOL view in general or whether it is your own invention.

    I did so because, in reality, your view of God's omniscience puts you more in line with process theology than it does with the OV.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
    Shame on you for falling for Dialogos straw men accusations.

    Though I can't say I'm surprised, you were always a gullible git.
    If he has legit concerns, they should be answered. It is clarifying, not gullible, to state that your personal views on the details are not representative, normative Open Theism. On points that you are right on or that reflect majority Open Theism views, I will defend and support you. On points that are your opinion that most disagree with, I will point that out, even if you are right.
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    I Jn. 3:20 does not prove exhaustive definite foreknowledge. The context is that God knows our heart=present or past certain knowledge vs potential, future possibilities.
    Know God and make Him known! (YWAM)

    They said: "Where is the God of Elijah?"
    I say: "Where are the Elijahs of God?" (Ravenhill "Why Revival Tarries")

    Rev. 1:17, 18; Jer. 9:23, 24

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    The Pledge: He died for me; I'll live for Him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by godrulz View Post
    I Jn. 3:20 does not prove exhaustive definite foreknowledge.
    I believe it does.


    The context is that God knows our heart=present or past certain knowledge vs potential, future possibilities.
    The context is God knows hypocritical hearts from anointed (I John 2:20) hearts.

    God is not mocked.
    "The immutable God never learned anything and never changed his mind. He knew everything from eternity."

    " The difference between faith and saving faith are the propositions believed."
    Gordon H. Clark

    "If a man be lost, God must not have the blame for it; but if a man be saved, God must have the glory of it."
    Charles Spurgeon

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    God knowing hearts is past/present knowledge, not exhaustive foreknowledge. It is sheer eisegesis to say that this verse proves that God has known all future free will contingencies from eternity past. It does not state nor imply that, so we must look at all relevant verses and godly philosophy to determine if the Bible teaches EDF/LFW.
    Know God and make Him known! (YWAM)

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    I say: "Where are the Elijahs of God?" (Ravenhill "Why Revival Tarries")

    Rev. 1:17, 18; Jer. 9:23, 24

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    Silver Member Nang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by godrulz View Post
    God knowing hearts is past/present knowledge, not exhaustive foreknowledge. It is sheer eisegesis to say that this verse proves that God has known all future free will contingencies from eternity past. It does not state nor imply that, so we must look at all relevant verses and godly philosophy to determine if the Bible teaches EDF/LFW.
    I John 3:20 reveals a holy attribute of God, which OT's and unbelievers try to dilute . . . if not outrightly deny.

    No matter what or how you argue against divine omniscience, God knows all and determines all, despite (and NEVER because of) all the free will contingencies and action of His sinful creatures.
    "The immutable God never learned anything and never changed his mind. He knew everything from eternity."

    " The difference between faith and saving faith are the propositions believed."
    Gordon H. Clark

    "If a man be lost, God must not have the blame for it; but if a man be saved, God must have the glory of it."
    Charles Spurgeon

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nang View Post
    I John 3:20 reveals a holy attribute of God, which OT's and unbelievers try to dilute . . . if not outrightly deny.

    No matter what or how you argue against divine omniscience, God knows all and determines all, despite (and NEVER because of) all the free will contingencies and action of His sinful creatures.
    The Bible does not teach pan-causality, determinism, decretalism.

    It does teach omniscience, something Open Theists fully affirm. We disagree on the nature of the future, not on whether or not God is omniscient (He is).

    We do not argue against omniscience, but understand it biblically vs your wrong tradition/philosophy.

    If God determines all, you have a major theodicy problem and must cut out verses to retain the view.
    Know God and make Him known! (YWAM)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dialogos View Post
    When did 1 John 3:20 become true? When did God begin to "know all things?"

    Lighthouse, who has closed the thread he started to discuss this issue after only 8 posts (hmmm, I wonder why....), has said that he thinks that 1 John 3:20 isn't true prior to Genesis 18. He thinks that the narrative passage where God comes down to judge Sodom and Gomorrah disproves that God can knew all things during that timeframe. You can see the whole discussion here.

    My questions are fourfold.

    1. Is this a common belief of the Open Theists on this board?
    2. If it is, then when did God become omniscient? When does 1 John 3:20 become true of God?
    3. Does scripture record the event where God became omniscient? If so, were in scripture do we find this?
    4. Isn't this really more in line with process theology than it is open theism?
    God always was and always will be - God has been omniscient always. God was not created and His omniscience did not begin

    this is laced throughout the entire Bible, it's not a matter of open theism, IMO.


    TRS -
    1 Corinthians 15:1-2 KJV - 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 KJV -


    Colossians 1:13-14 KJV - Colossians 1:15-16 KJV - Colossians 1:17-18 KJV -

    Colossians 1:19-20 KJV - Colossians 1:21-22 KJV - Colossians 1:23 KJV -

    Colossians 1:25-26 KJV 27, 28, 29 - Ephesians 1:7 KJV - Ephesians 1:12-13, 14 -



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    Quote Originally Posted by Nang View Post
    I John 3:20 reveals a holy attribute of God, which OT's and unbelievers try to dilute . . . if not outrightly deny.
    Of course the LORD knows all things and what John Wesley says here explains how He knows all:

    "The sum of all is this: the almighty, all-wise God sees and knows, from everlasting to everlasting, all that is, that was, and that is to come, through one eternal now. With him nothing is either past or future, but all things equally present. He has, therefore, if we speak according to the truth of things, no foreknowledge, no afterknowledge. This would be ill consistent with the Apostle's words, 'With him is no variableness or shadow of turning;' and with the account he gives of himself by the Prophet, 'I the Lord change not'...Not that God has any need of counsel, of purpose, or of planning his work beforehand. Far be it from us to impute these to the Most High; to measure him by ourselves! It is merely in compassion to us that he speaks thus of himself, as foreknowing the things in heaven or earth, and as predestinating or fore-ordaining them. But can we possibly imagine that these expressions are to be taken literally?" [emphasis mine] (John Wesley, Sermons on Several Occasions, 1771, Second Series, "On Predestination," Sermon #58; Christian Classics Ethereal Library).

    William Ames (1576-1655), often known as "the Learned Doctor Ames" because of his great intellectual stature among Puritans, said the following:

    "There is properly only one act of the will in God because in Him all things are simultaneous and there is nothing before or after. So there is only decree about the end and means, but for the manner of understanding we say that, so far as intention is concerned, God wills the end before the means" [emphasis mine](William Ames, The Marrow of Theology, translation and introduction by John, Dystra, Eudsen, [Boston: The Pilgrim Press, 1968], 153-154).

    Loraine Boettner wrote the following:

    "Much of the difficulty in regard to the doctrine of Predestination is due to the finite character of our mind, which can grasp only a few details at a time, and which understands only a part of the relations between these. We are creatures of time, and often fail to take into consideration the fact that God is not limited as we are. That which appears to us as 'past,' 'present,' and 'future,' is all 'present' to His mind. It is an eternal 'now'...Just as He sees at one glance a road leading from New York to San Francisco, while we see only a small portion of it as we pass over it, so He sees all events in history, past, present, and future at one glance" (Loraine Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination [Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1932]).

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    Over 1500 post club Arsenios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dialogos View Post
    WHEN did 1 John 3:20 become true?
    WHEN did God begin to "know all things?"
    Too easy -

    The WHEN-dids are before, during, and after ALL WHENS...

    But you-knew-that!

    NEXT!

    A.
    Arsenios

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