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Discussion thread: One on One: AMR and JCWR on the Temporality of God

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  • jasonwill
    replied
    I am new in this forum great .....................

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  • godrulz
    replied
    I think AMR would understand and define it differently. AMR? (I actually though it was originally a supra/infra Calvinistic issue that has become a determinism vs free will issue?).

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  • Knight
    replied
    Originally posted by tetelestai View Post
    It’s called Compatabilism.

    Compatabilsim is the belief that man’s free will and God’s foreknowledge exist together.

    In other words, I believe we have free will, that God answers our prayers, that God intervenes in our lives, and at the same time God knows exactly what will happen in the future.
    Compatabilism, is just a word. You may as well use the word "snardblat". It's as if you are saying... "see, my theology isn't illogical because of snarblat". Well gee... that's convenient. I need a word like that! It would make debating so much easier!

    Now... the real challenge for you will be showing to us how your two positions are in fact compatible.

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  • godrulz
    replied
    Originally posted by tetelestai View Post
    It’s called Compatabilism.

    Compatabilsim is the belief that man’s free will and God’s foreknowledge exist together.

    In other words, I believe we have free will, that God answers our prayers, that God intervenes in our lives, and at the same time God knows exactly what will happen in the future.

    Moreover, I do not believe God is the author of sin. Satan committed the first sin, and man followed with Adam committing a sin. Because God is a respecter of free volition, sin exists.

    I believe election follows belief. I am pro OSAS.

    So, yes Delmer God answers prayers, but God knew a billion years ago what your prayer was, and yet at the same time you are 100% free to pray for whatever you want, whenever you want, about whatever you want. That is what compatibilism is.
    Compatibilism is a form of determinism. It compromises libertarian free will (redundant). It is not defensible, but a loophole. Determinists do not believe we can influence God. The Bible portrays a different picture. God is dynamic, not static. Prayer is not just for our sake (Calv.), but actually interacts in a reciprocal way with a relational, personal God (not just the Unmoved Mover of philosophy).

    I think you like the middle ground and want to have your cake and eat it too. I tried this once, but failed. You will eventually have to pick one side or the other since mutually exclusive, diametrically opposed views cannot be mediated (I suggest that compatibilism is refutable and problematic).

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  • godrulz
    replied
    Originally posted by Delmar View Post
    Yes, I believe so. Believing that the future is not entirely settled in advance, is the open view.
    When the topic is... "is the future completely settled in advance?"
    ...these are side issues.
    Two main points are endless time vs timelessness and free will vs determinism (ideas are linked). There are many practical implications to doctrine and practice, depending which side we embrace and which is actually true. It is a worthy debate.

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  • godrulz
    replied
    Originally posted by Delmar View Post
    It is the "and that the future is not possible for God to know" part of the quote that is grabbing my attention.
    The issue is the nature of creation and the future, not whether God is omniscient or ignorant. If the future was knowable as a certainty, God would know it. If an Open Theist denied that God knows the knowable, we would be wrong.

    If the future is inherently unknowable because God voluntarily allowed free will, contingencies, uncertainties, then it is not a deficiency in omniscience to not know the unknowable.

    The future is anticipatory, not actual, even for God. He does know by anticipation what He chooses to settle in advance. He knows as possible/probable other uncertainties because they are not possible objects of certain knowledge.

    This is clear to me, but I appreciate those who don't get it because they are committed to retaining a classical/traditional view of God that they feel cannot be 'compromised'.

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  • Knight
    replied
    Guys this is an interesting thread but it's getting lost because it's tacked unto the discussion thread for the One on One that flopped.

    So I started a new thread here so we can carry on in a more relevant way.

    Leave a comment:


  • tetelestai
    replied
    Originally posted by Delmar View Post
    I have to admit my own bias. From my earliest study of the Bible I became convinced that God is actually willing to respond to the prayer of one earnest man.... Ex. 32:10-14; Num. 11:1-2, 14:12-20, 16:16:20-35; Deut. 9:13-14, 9:18-20, 9:25; 2 Sam. 24:17-25; 1 Kin. 21:27-29; 2 Kin. 20:6; 2 Chron. 12:5-8; Jer. 26:19; Isa. 38:5

    ... as opposed to having his mind entirely made up in advance.
    It’s called Compatabilism.

    Compatabilsim is the belief that man’s free will and God’s foreknowledge exist together.

    In other words, I believe we have free will, that God answers our prayers, that God intervenes in our lives, and at the same time God knows exactly what will happen in the future.

    Moreover, I do not believe God is the author of sin. Satan committed the first sin, and man followed with Adam committing a sin. Because God is a respecter of free volition, sin exists.

    I believe election follows belief. I am pro OSAS.

    So, yes Delmer God answers prayers, but God knew a billion years ago what your prayer was, and yet at the same time you are 100% free to pray for whatever you want, whenever you want, about whatever you want. That is what compatibilism is.

    Leave a comment:


  • Delmar
    replied
    Originally posted by tetelestai View Post
    Because if you remember the BR X - A Calvinist's Response (Ask Mr. Religion vs. Enyart) it didn’t matter what AMR said, everyone who was pro-Enyart said Enyart won the debate, and everyone who was pro-AMR said AMR won the debate.

    It was like a sporting event. Let me try to explain. I have been to many Pittsburgh Steelers games over the last 35 years. However, when the Steelers play the Cleveland Browns, the games are just a little more fun and intense. There are a lot of people from Cleveland who come to the games, and vice versa with the games in Cleveland (the two cities are less than 2 hours apart)

    No matter who wins the game, when the game is over, and people are walking to their cars, if some Steelers fans see people wearing Cleveland jerseys, they yell “Cleveland sucks” even if the Browns just won the game. Likewise, after games the Steelers have won, Cleveland fans yell “Pittsburgh Sucks”

    Unfortunately that is how I saw the BRX thread with AMR and Enyart. It didn’t matter what either guy said, each side was loyal, and pretty much said the other side “sucked”, but in different words.

    That’s not the way it is supposed to be, but for some reason that’s the way it always ends up 99.9% of the time. Today however was different, and it was nice to see the difference.

    Remember Knight, you and Enyart and all the other open theists could be 100% correct, and all of us settled theists wrong. I am open to that possibility. That is why I don’t wear “Settled Theist” authentic jerseys, not even the cheap fake ones.
    I have to admit my own bias. From my earliest study of the Bible I became convinced that God is actually willing to respond to the prayer of one earnest man.... Ex. 32:10-14; Num. 11:1-2, 14:12-20, 16:16:20-35; Deut. 9:13-14, 9:18-20, 9:25; 2 Sam. 24:17-25; 1 Kin. 21:27-29; 2 Kin. 20:6; 2 Chron. 12:5-8; Jer. 26:19; Isa. 38:5

    ... as opposed to having his mind entirely made up in advance.

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  • Delmar
    replied
    Originally posted by Ask Mr. Religion View Post
    Is this the sole litmus test for open theism? What are the universally accepted essentials of a person being able to lay claim to the label?
    Yes, I believe so. Believing that the future is not entirely settled in advance, is the open view.
    Nature of the Trinity?

    Omniscience as defined by the church divines?

    Omnipotence as defined by the church divines?

    Temorality?

    OSAS? POTS?

    Lots more work needed here.

    AMR
    When the topic is... "is the future completely settled in advance?"
    ...these are side issues.

    Leave a comment:


  • Delmar
    replied
    Originally posted by godrulz View Post
    Ware rejects timelessness and is an enemy of OVT and a strong Calvinist. Eternal now is the most common view of non-OVT, but not the only one. God as temporal fits OVT and free will theism, but is only one of several things that define it. I think Ware is inconsistent and should become an OVT, but at least he has this one thing right (but does not follow through properly).
    It is the "and that the future is not possible for God to know" part of the quote that is grabbing my attention.

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  • Stripe
    replied
    I think it's best to approach this discussion from a simple viewpoint. The bible shows God acting within time and all His foreknowledge is perfectly reasonable given His wisdom without the need for Him being "outside of time". This should be the default position. AMR claims that the bible uses anthropomorphic language so that we can comprehend an incomprehensible God. My question would be:

    How is it that AMR understands incomprehensible God when every dealing with Him in the bible is based on comprehensible terms?

    There seems to be no benefit to insisting that God exists "outside" of time. It only serves to make what is simple in a story into something complicated.

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  • Ask Mr. Religion
    replied
    Originally posted by godrulz View Post
    If JCWR would have posted like AMR did and vice versa, we would think JCWR's view was right.

    The same seems to apply to those who speak forcefully, eloquently, persuasively compared to an insecure, weak, feeble speaker. Uninformed people will believe the authoritative sounding first speaker, though wrong, and dismiss the weak speaker, though right.

    AMR is to be commended for his effort, but that does not mean everything he dogmatically says is actually right.

    Of course, he would be right to tell us to put up or shut up and refute him.
    So the rule of thumb is that anyone who does the heavy lifting to substantiate their position is to be discounted since, after all, that person disagrees with the presupposition that open theism is correct?

    You seem to discount the fact that my opponent was genuinely persuaded by my arguments. A real person who had a change of heart based on the debate seems meaningless to you. Instead you infer that my opponent was unable to deal with the force of my arguments, lacking the intellectual capacity. Instead could it just be that my opponent possessed the intellectual capacity to recognize his own misunderstandings and was open to correction?

    It is telling that in a fair debate, when one side yields, those on the sidelines cry foul because their pet views were on the losing side. You prefer to claim any victory that disagress with your presuppositional views is hollow, one borne from overwhelming an opponent, versus one genuinely earned by force of argument.

    Perhaps if you invested more time in substantive argumentation, you would value the effort and appreciate the result.

    AMR

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  • godrulz
    replied
    Originally posted by Ask Mr. Religion View Post


    When you are ready, please feel free to discuss in detail, using direct quotations from the chapter, how you differ from Helm's response in Paul Helm, “Response to Nicholas Wolterstorff,” in Four Views: God and Time 215.


    Would make for a lively discussion.

    AMR

    Why would I do this when it is a better academic discipline for the TOL readers to read both chapters in context. You still do not get it that TOL is not a doctorate level classroom or a forum to publish our long papers for fellow scholars to consider. I do not like Helm's views because they are Calvinistic and wrong. You like them because they are Calvinistic and you feel they are right.

    I did not agree with everything Wolterstorff said and think he compromised at times. To start dissecting this book would not be as good as others actually reading it and deciding for themselves based on the contents that I do not want to regurgitate or get bogged down with in light of the 1269 other threads I monitor.

    You don't like me and you don't like it when I don't play ivory tower with you. I suspect it would be futile and counterproductive and am not convinced you are more interested in light than heat, helping vs winning an argument to puff yourself up as the mighty AMR.

    Since I have less formal education, I would expect you to excel where I would not. This still does not mean you are right and I am wrong.

    If you gave me a sentence or paragraph from Helm, why not give us Wolterstorff's response if he gave one (you can read and seem to have more time than I do)? I will tell you if I agree or if I have an opinion on that specific issue. We really should dissect Bible verses, not just other author's who are fallible.

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  • godrulz
    replied
    Originally posted by Ask Mr. Religion View Post
    Is this the sole litmus test for open theism? What are the universally accepted essentials of a person being able to lay claim to the label?

    Nature of the Trinity?

    Omniscience as defined by the church divines?

    Omnipotence as defined by the church divines?

    Temorality?

    OSAS? POTS?

    Lots more work needed here.

    AMR

    I think Sanders has an objective grasp on these issues and is able to dialogue peacefully and positively with Calvinists and critics.

    The doctrine of God book I mentioned has some theological groundwork from Sanders (this is after he talks about the biblical evidence):

    1) Divine timelessness is incompatible with the core beliefs of free will theism.

    2) Exhaustive definite foreknowledge is incompatible with the core beliefs of free will theism.

    3) The supposition that God intends evil is incompatible with free will theism.

    So, the issues are determinism vs free will theism, endless time vs timelessness, the nature of sovereignty and omniscience, the nature of creation (including the future as settled or not), etc. These distinctives would keep us busy.

    There are a variety of views within Calvinism and Arminianism. Don't let AMR demand that Open Theists must agree on every doctrine, every verse, every argument, every aspect of theology. I am a Pentecostal Open Theist while others are MAD Open Theists. We agree on basic OVT ideas, but that does not mean we have to agree on every idea or every area of truth (double standard since Calvinists certainly don't either; Ware shares ideas with Helm and Sanders, but is a Calvinist, not an OVT).

    Sanders and Boyd have sites that will give one a good feel for OVT from prominent proponents:

    http://www.gregboyd.org/

    http://www.opentheism.info/

    (intro: what is openness?)

    I have read some of the critics (not many whole books) of OVT. They are basically attacking Arminians as much as OVTs (a more biblical, coherent free will theism vs determinism), or are simply assuming Calvinism dogmatically and dismissing any non-Calvinistic view. I do not find it hard to counter their arguments which include too many straw men and misunderstandings of the view (makes me cringe).

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