Theology Club: Does Open Theism Question/dispute the Omniscience of God

Derf

Well-known member
Since you raised a question of whether the translation was proper, do you know of any English translation that does not say "Now I know" at this place?

12 and He saith, 'Put not forth thine hand unto the youth, nor do anything to him, for now I have known that thou art fearing God, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only one, from Me.' [Gen 22:12 YLT]

Not sure what difference the present perfect "have known" makes, but the Young's Literal Translation is not afraid to express it without reforming it to fit our grammatical expectations.
 

Derf

Well-known member
Or was it anthropomorphic in conveyance to Abraham? The idea that God doesn't know what is going on in His universe, contrasted with 1 John 3:20 Colossians 1:17, John 15:5 Psalm 139:4, Romans 9:18-21 and James 4:13-16 When we wrestle with scriptures, dare we, His finite and limited creatures 'guess' or surmise that He has less? Logic is fine, but it cannot be used to 'over-ride' scriptures, just grasp them. There are times when "I don't know" is the appropriate answer.
You're saying it is ok to ignore God's revelation as long as we know it's not true?


This is an Open Theist comment and summation. It isn't God who had to know. It was Abraham. In a nutshell, that is the difference, when it comes to knowledge, between me and an Open Theist. As with the scriptures above, I believe implicitly there is never, ever, ever, ever something God learns. To me, scripturally as well as logistically, it makes God the product 'of' the universe rather than being the Creator and Maker with 'nothing else beside Him.' 1) I believe those scriptures have no wiggle room and are pedantic. There is no 'interpretive' power going on. 2) That as intelligent as I may be, there are times this applies to me Psalm 46:10 For me, entertaining a thought against a pedantic scripture given, is not taking Him seriously and second-guessing Him. "I am God and I do not change, lest you perish!" is about as pedantic and instructively clear as can be stated.
But don't we determine what that means from what He says about Himself? And if what He says about Himself allows for some kinds of change, then we can gain understanding of God from both types of statements, the one where He says He doesn't change and the one where He says He does.

To me? A blatant contradiction. 1 John 3:20 Let me ask: Doesn't 'your' theory contradict God very God? To me, it inescapably does and so my mind is bewildered that 1 John 3:20 'cannot' mean what it clearly says. This is the Apostle trying to tell us something VERY SPECIFIC about God. Again, in my mind and confusion, how could God not know what was in Abraham's heart and intentions? Psalm 19:12
What is the definition of "God very God"? If God tells us what He is like, then we need to use that to define the terms that aren't so clear. "God very God" can certainly mean that He is able to execute His plan, in spite of all defiance, but doesn't require that He has to arrange only the "right" defiance so He can overcome it.

What about "things"? What does "all things" mean? do we use our understanding of God, apart from scripture, to determine what that means? Or do we see the portions of scripture that says God changed how He dealt with a person or nation based on their prayers of repentance or sneers of rebellion? The latter makes more sense, and can help us to define "things" as what is and what was, and what God plans to do (the latter of which doesn't need to be included, since the passage is talking about what our heart is condemning us of).

I think it is a little disingenuous to say "all" here means everything we can think of, but "all" in other places is limited.

These are serious matters, but I'm not intending any of this to be confrontational so if this isn't working for a meeting of minds and hearts, let me know.
No, I agree this is serious, but iron should be sharpening iron here, with soft hearts toward each other and with unity in mind.

It isn't an instruction, however. It isn't telling you something to believe or telling you how to worship (show God's worth and giving respect) Him according to His self description. In addition, "now I know" is one small Hebrew word and often gets interpreted by the translator's word, rather than the context originally given. "Henceforth it shall be known" works very well in conveying the meaning. "Now I know" isn't necessary for this translation to be accurate. It is just yawd atah "henceforth known by [such and such actions]. We have a few Hebrew scholars on TOL who can confirm this.
I think I'll let [MENTION=18255]Rosenritter[/MENTION]'s reply suffice here.


:nono: It says exactly the opposite: BECAUSE God doesn't changed, you will not perish because of your sins. It means their sins warranted immediate judgment. It was the 'unchanging' character of God: His love mercy and grace, that they were not consumed.
Absolutely! the character of God is unchanging, but not His predetermined actions. But once you allow for God to change a predetermined action, you've just jumped into the open camp. Welcome aboard!


No, not a reaction. God is NOT going to suddenly become 'more' loving. That is a changing God and is not consistent. If I've learned anything in being a parent these past 30 years, it is that consistency is one of the most loving attributes of any parent.

It is NOT that I'm "More" loving to my kids when they do something wrong, to return grace. That isn't it. What is rather the factor is that my kids are relational to 'my' grace and love. Interacting isn't a 'change' in the stronger person BECAUSE it shows forth during a weakness in the other. To suggest otherwise is to suggest a weakness in my parenting ability. No problem with me (untrue, but not a problem). Huge problem with saying it about God. He IS the perfect parent. He just cannot do it better. He is already the quintessential definition of perfection. He does NOT have 'more' mercy because that suggests a deficiency in His character, a flaw. Why? Because the logistic pattern points to something God was not already perfectly full of when you or I came to Him with the problem. More? It is only when I become like my heavenly Father in parenting, that I do it right. God and godliness IS the mark expected of me. I can't get higher OR ELSE God isn't the mark. Some 'ideal' would take His place. That just isn't possible and it is VERY problematic to suggest it.
Again, I quite agree! His characteristic of lovingness (if you'll pardon my coinage) is not changing. But how He applies that characteristic will, based on what His children do. Just like our children. We love our children differently depending on how they behave. We never lose our characteristic of being their father, but if they need it, we chastise or even curse, in some degree. And if they repent, we bless.


:nono: orthodox means 'accepted.' "Correct" should coincide with that, but that isn't what the word means. It means simply "what the majority of us have argued and have come to agree upon as truth."
Etymology: from early French orthodoxe or Latin orthodoxus, both meaning "orthodox," from Greek orthodoxos (same meaning), from orthodoxein "to have the right or true opinion," derived from orthos "right, true" and doxa "opinion". Thus, the opposite of "orthodox" would be "wrong opinion". And even though that's not in the dictionary, it is what is thought of when the word is used, including church sects (like "Orthodox Presbyterian Church"). They didn't pick that name because they thought they might be wrong, but because they thought the others WERE wrong.

You aren't quite grasping the difference between pedantic and 'teaching' in general. "Socratic" is also 'teaching' but it is not pedantic teaching. Rather, what theologians are telling you, at that point, is that God does take time, in His bible to clearly and precisely tell you something that you must know and at other times, will be teaching something else. Because of the nature of 'something else' it may be related to your subject interest but it is best said "not about your particular interest.' That is, the context is about something different, it just happens to touch upon another truth, as all truth does. The point is, take home what a passage actually IS trying to tell you about a specific truth. Next? If you have been told something absolute about God such as "God is [ ]." Make sure you do not disbelieve or start questioning that clear teaching.
Let me think about this some more.


This is one of the key features of disagreement between an Open Theist and the rest of Christendom that disagrees. The example given is not in contention, but the point it is made for (God's lack of character or knowledge) certainly is.
I'm starting to lean toward what is God able to do versus what is He unable to do. Can God change the past? why or why not? Is the future of the same substance as the past? Why or why not? Then, based on those answers, can God change the future?

I think reformed faith says, "No" to that last question. With the reason being that God doesn't need to, but also with the reason that it is all determined by God. Arminianism says, "Yes", but illogically. Open Theism says, "Yes", with restrictions from His character (can't lie), and from His plan/purposes.

I may be offline through the weekend, but look forward to reading replies afterward.
Derf
 

Lon

Active member
Since you raised a question of whether the translation was proper, do you know of any English translation that does not say "Now I know" at this place?
English? No. Hebrew, yes "I have made known" or 'With this I have shown."

Lon, can you anticipate how one of us might reply to this particular statement above? Because it sure seems that Matt Slick thinks this is unanswerable...

It is unanswerable: according to even the verse in question, "now I know" is still a misnomer under Open Theism. God still couldn't have known, only surmised in an Open theology. If such was God's genuine need 'to know' simply allowing the knife to fall and then reviving the child would have been a better Open presupposition outcome. :think:
 

Lon

Active member
You're saying it is ok to ignore God's revelation as long as we know it's not true?
No. As I suggested, 'Socratic' teaching would leave you and I to discovery learning where we postulate and try to come to a deduced understanding of a truth BUT, if we are told something clearly, and through 'deduction' come to a contradiction, it is simply wisest to 1) not do so often, let alone for about every one of your theological tenents (story is more the road truth travels on, where as the truth is given pedantically usually not obscured or in question by story).


But don't we determine what that means from what He says about Himself? And if what He says about Himself allows for some kinds of change, then we can gain understanding of God from both types of statements, the one where He says He doesn't change and the one where He says He does.
It is actually opposite, in Malachi, God says He doesn't change, in Samuel, Samuel says God 'sighed' (translators say 'changed mind.' God doesn't "change His mind" btw and never says He does. It is a colloquial phrase.
doesn't require that He has to arrange only the "right" defiance so He can overcome it.
I'm not certain what you are meaning, nor if defiance is needed for God to accomplish something. Let me go back to my example of my dog: I see in his eye he is going to run across the street. I either stop him with a command or catch his collar. Either way, he is stopped from running in the road, and that (obviously I'd hope) for his own good. Can this example at all help with what you are meaning?

What about "things"? What does "all things" mean? do we use our understanding of God, apart from scripture, to determine what that means? Or do we see the portions of scripture that says God changed how He dealt with a person or nation based on their prayers of repentance or sneers of rebellion? The latter makes more sense, and can help us to define "things" as what is and what was, and what God plans to do (the latter of which doesn't need to be included, since the passage is talking about what our heart is condemning us of).

I think it is a little disingenuous to say "all" here means everything we can think of, but "all" in other places is limited.
"dis" ingenuous always leaves awkwardness. Genuine mean the real deal. Ingenuous means the same OR ingenuine not genuine :mmph: ungenuine also means not genuine. Then disingenuous... "All" of something may be "all" I have in my wallet rather than 'all' the money in the world. My interest is the scripture 1 John 3:20 says clearly what 'all' means "God is GREATER than our hearts" meaning, He knows them implicitly. I can see no other way to understand that text, nor can I believe God or John disingenuous --> Nothing is said, God KNOWS our hearts, and as David surmised in his psalm, better in fact that we know ourselves. Jeremiah 17:9 Whatever we say of the scriptures, we must honor them of first import. "God very God" btw, is a term akin to "he, himself." It is a statement that implores us to have only the God who is, as God of our lives.

No, I agree this is serious, but iron should be sharpening iron here, with soft hearts toward each other and with unity in mind.

I think I'll let @Rosenritter's reply suffice here.


Absolutely! the character of God is unchanging, but not His predetermined actions. But once you allow for God to change a predetermined action, you've just jumped into the open camp. Welcome aboard!
The difference rather is what is available in resource as I think of it John 15:5 Colossians 1:17. We ever only interact with God on resources that are His alone. We've no meeting ground but Christ. As I suggested earlier, it isn't my 'changing' nature that my children bank on. It is my 'unchanging consistent' nature they hope for, because it is that which is closest to Christ's (unchanging and consistent nature). Iow, it is when I am like our consistent, loving, and dependable Christ, that we show love best, and not the other way around. It isn't so much that God 'caters' to us, but that we are changed into His image, that we are best grasping love, and grasped in love. For me, it is the 'closed' nature of God that does not and cannot change, that I find stability and love. God has no need to change his perfection to 'suit' my need. my 'need' is to be conformed to His unchanging ever-the-same beautiful image. 1 John 3:2
Again, I quite agree! His characteristic of lovingness (if you'll pardon my coinage) is not changing. But how He applies that characteristic will, based on what His children do. Just like our children. We love our children differently depending on how they behave. We never lose our characteristic of being their father, but if they need it, we chastise or even curse, in some degree. And if they repent, we bless.
I think, rather, that we exert what love we are, already, to meet those specific needs of our children. Example: My oldest wants more black and white, my second, guidance. Same love, it isn't the love that is changing. It is their specific 'need' AND as it conforms them to His steadfast image.



Etymology: from early French orthodoxe or Latin orthodoxus, both meaning "orthodox," from Greek orthodoxos (same meaning), from orthodoxein "to have the right or true opinion," derived from orthos "right, true" and doxa "opinion". Thus, the opposite of "orthodox" would be "wrong opinion". And even though that's not in the dictionary, it is what is thought of when the word is used, including church sects (like "Orthodox Presbyterian Church"). They didn't pick that name because they thought they might be wrong, but because they thought the others WERE wrong.


Let me think about this some more.


I'm starting to lean toward what is God able to do versus what is He unable to do. Can God change the past? why or why not? Is the future of the same substance as the past? Why or why not? Then, based on those answers, can God change the future?
It can hurt the head, but awesome questions. For me, the answer is that "it is all the same for God." Point? When God acts, it is already the perfect response, thus the past, present, and future are all connected in His perfection. He interacts to bring about redemption.

I think reformed faith says, "No" to that last question. With the reason being that God doesn't need to, but also with the reason that it is all determined by God. Arminianism says, "Yes", but illogically. Open Theism says, "Yes", with restrictions from His character (can't lie), and from His plan/purposes.

I may be offline through the weekend, but look forward to reading replies afterward.
Derf
I think your grasp is correct or very close to...here. :e4e: Enjoy this Labor Day Weekend. In Him -Lon
 

Rosenritter

New member
It is unanswerable: according to even the verse in question, "now I know" is still a misnomer under Open Theism. God still couldn't have known, only surmised in an Open theology. If such was God's genuine need 'to know' simply allowing the knife to fall and then reviving the child would have been a better Open presupposition outcome. :think:

"Now I know" is hardly a misnomer (and I'm not sure how you have that idea, since Matt didn't make much sense to me.) There's a point in our hearts (our minds) where we commit ourselves to a decision, and we decide for do program ourselves as evidenced through our physical decisions.

Even a purely physical standpoint, God knows when we have given the command from our spirit and can intercept that before it travels the nueron-to-muscle pathway. There are a myriad other possible options such as stopping the arm with the strength of an angel or rendering Isaac knife-proof.

The important part is that if we first believe the scripture as God has chosen to present himself to us rather than interpreting it through a philosophical lens, it will tell us:

1) God did not know with perfect certainty what Abraham would choose until that moment
2) God did know with perfect certainty what Abraham would choose after that moment

We don't need to know the metaphysical mechanics of how God knows the heart, and how he determines when it is changeable and when it is set. We can theorize, but it should stay within the boundaries of God's revelation, such as given in the passage of Genesis 22 above.
 

Rosenritter

New member
It is actually opposite, in Malachi, God says He doesn't change, in Samuel, Samuel says God 'sighed' (translators say 'changed mind.' God doesn't "change His mind" btw and never says He does. It is a colloquial phrase.

I suspect that you may be taking a statement outside of its intended context. I think Derf has touched on this point before.

Part of God's (unchangeable?) nature is that he has the right and ability to change his mind: in fact, this is an essential element of the gospel of Jesus Christ, touching repentance and grace. The scripture also tells us that in times past God has changed his mind (the book of Jonah, for example?) God being the same yesterday, to day, and forever does not mean that he no longer has the power to act.
 

Lon

Active member
"Now I know" is hardly a misnomer (and I'm not sure how you have that idea, since Matt didn't make much sense to me.) There's a point in our hearts (our minds) where we commit ourselves to a decision, and we decide for do program ourselves as evidenced through our physical decisions.
Again, the action never happened. I thoroughly believe (and scripturally) that God knows our thoughts, hears, and intentions. There is no 'discovered now' with God.

Even a purely physical standpoint, God knows when we have given the command from our spirit and can intercept that before it travels the nueron-to-muscle pathway. There are a myriad other possible options such as stopping the arm with the strength of an angel or rendering Isaac knife-proof.
Speculative, but it is still better than other Open Theists I've talked to. You at least have God knowing the intention, thinking, and heart of man (Abraham) :up:


The important part is that if we first believe the scripture as God has chosen to present himself to us rather than interpreting it through a philosophical lens, it will tell us:

1) God did not know with perfect certainty what Abraham would choose until that moment
2) God did know with perfect certainty what Abraham would choose after that moment
Absolutely disagree. We know from other scriptures that God is 'greater than our hearts' and further, knows them implicitly. Even Peter, talking of Jesus asking "Do you love me?" says implicitly: "Lord you know!" Sorry, I just don't see your reasoning as logically holding up against such scriptural truths. It either looks to me as if you are ignorant of them or not logical in which you will adhere to. Of course this is always the Open/Traditional playing field. It just has to happen that assertion is the playing field action, because we will not look at what each of us believes is untenable, scripturally. The only thing I can hope for, is that scripture cannot return void without accomplishing God's purpose, but that's pretty Calvinistic. I'm also very convinced that Only God's intent and desires matter anyway. It makes me fairly staunch in my disagreement here, hence 1) God knew perfectly even before it ever occurred by scriptural necessity and 2) No change after because God doesn't 'learn' anything. He is God. He knows implicitly. It 'looks' like a man-made, finite, limited statement from Open Theism to me. I realize we get the same as Calvinists, but scripture is more important than what I or you 'think.' It matters more what God does, who He is, and what He thinks. I can sit with John the Baptist decreasing while He increases. Its not my time, its His.


We don't need to know the metaphysical mechanics of how God knows the heart, and how he determines when it is changeable and when it is set. We can theorize, but it should stay within the boundaries of God's revelation, such as given in the passage of Genesis 22 above.
I have had philosophy classes BUT I didn't get these thoughts from there or from Augustine or Plato or Aristotle. I got them from scriptures. That said, metaphysical thinking only happens with one out of ten people. In the same way God's truths with mathematics are true, whether one has the capacity to apprehend higher math, God's metaphysical truths are just as true. You cannot dismiss them. Need to know them? Only, imho, if you are trying to teach His higher truths. Then? Absolutely. You may be an awesome general math kinda guy or gal, but something is missing if by the same token such a one is ignorant of higher math principles. In this case, knowing God's character is very important to this story of Abraham and his son: So much so, that Hebrew scholars have recognized the need to give caution to translation work. Ancient Hebrew is not an exacting language. It often conveyed broad thoughts and translation had to use context for meanings. In this case, in my studied opinion, 'now I know' is a supposition by the translators. "Henceforth shall it be made known" is part and parcel to Moses writing it down, thus makes the better sense "It shall be made known" fits.
 

Lon

Active member
I suspect that you may be taking a statement outside of its intended context. I think Derf has touched on this point before.

Part of God's (unchangeable?) nature is that he has the right and ability to change his mind: in fact, this is an essential element of the gospel of Jesus Christ, touching repentance and grace.
I disagree. It isn't that God needs to reach into 'our' world, but that He NEEDS to bring us to His. THAT was what was lost at the Fall: A necessary relationship with God. John 15:5 Why did Adam die? The 'time' factor wasn't important. Adam did not instantly drop dead. Rather, He was cut off from the Only Life. John 15:5 isn't a simile, it is 100% exact, as far as I understand the scriptures. It isn't just 'being' with Jesus, it is Abiding (Living/staying) in and with Him. There is no life without Him. Dead branches. Cut-off. Thrown away. That's what was lost at the Fall.

The scripture also tells us that in times past God has changed his mind (the book of Jonah, for example?) God being the same yesterday, to day, and forever does not mean that he no longer has the power to act.
Nobody, not even you, has ever changed his/her mind. You have the same mind as always you did. It is VERY problematic to suggest God changes His, if you and I, finite humans, in need of change, never do. Literally, it required an act of God (your salvation/new createdness), to 'change' your mind. You couldn't do it. Nobody 'can' change their mind. God never does because He has nothing to change. How could His perfect, loving will change? For the better? :nono: For the worse? :nono: Logically, God has NEVER changed His mind. He cannot love you any more, can He? He cannot 'do better' than He already does, can He?
 

Stripe

Teenage Adaptive Ninja Turtle
LIFETIME MEMBER
Hall of Fame
God knew perfectly even before it ever occurred by scriptural necessity and no change after because God doesn't 'learn' anything. He is God. He knows implicitly. It 'looks' like a man-made, finite, limited statement from Open Theism to me. I realize we get the same as Calvinists, but scripture is more important than what I or you 'think.' It matters more what God does, who He is, and what He thinks.

The sums up the problem I have with the Calvinist approach: They read a story like Abraham and Issac and assert that it cannot mean what it says because of "who God is."

Doesn't this story contribute to the picture of who God is?
 

Delmar

Patron Saint of SMACK
LIFETIME MEMBER
Hall of Fame
The sums up the problem I have with the Calvinist approach: They read a story like Abraham and Issac and assert that it cannot mean what it says because of "who God is."

Doesn't this story contribute to the picture of who God is?

BOOM!
 

Ask Mr. Religion

☞☞☞☞Presbyterian (PCA) &#9
Gold Subscriber
LIFETIME MEMBER
Hall of Fame
Archetypal and Ectypal Theological Distinctions

Archetypal and Ectypal Theological Distinctions

The sums up the problem I have with the Calvinist approach: They read a story like Abraham and Issac and assert that it cannot mean what it says because of "who God is."

Doesn't this story contribute to the picture of who God is?

Sure it contributes to our understanding of God, as do all historical accounts in Scripture. That said, when we go off formulating doctrine based upon historical matters, all the while ignoring or reading into the didactic passages in Scripture related to the topic at hand, we have wandered into the weeds of proper interpretation of Scripture. If we rely upon historical accounts, giving them preference over the full counsel of Scripture, we have ignored the archetypal and ectypal aspects of Scripture. See the attached for a basic introduction of these aspects.


View attachment 26641
 

Ask Mr. Religion

☞☞☞☞Presbyterian (PCA) &#9
Gold Subscriber
LIFETIME MEMBER
Hall of Fame
"now I know" passages

"now I know" passages

How? It says God wanted to find out what kind of man Abraham was, but your sources say we can't take that at face value.
Appealing to selective evidence to make a claim that God does not know something is where this leads. For example, does the claim it was because Abraham did what he did that the Lord now knew Abraham was a faithful covenant partner (Gen 22:12) really withstand the evidence in Scripture's plain teachings about the knowledge of God?

To make such a bold claim is to ignore the related texts to this passage, especially Hebrews 11:19, which says, "He (Abraham) considered that God is able to raise men (Isaac) even from the dead; from which he also received him back as a type." If we exposit the passage, it demonstrates without any doubt that Abraham had a God-fearing heart leading up to his sacrifice of Isaac. Since God knows this—all openists acknowledge God has perfect knowledge of the past and present—it is absolutely error to interpret Gen 22:12 as saying that when Abraham lifted the knife did God 'learn' that Abraham feared God. It is easy to make the Bible say what we want it to say when we only appeal to certain texts and certain parts of certain texts.

It is not as though God was ignorant before how things would issue; for God knew from all eternity what Abraham would be, and what he would do, having determined to bestow that grace upon him, and work it in him, which would influence and enable him to act the part he did. God knew full well beforehand what would be the consequence of such a trial of Abraham.

In the passage in question, God speaks thus with us, not according to His own infinite wisdom, but according to our infirmity as finite creatures.

This "now I know" is spoken here, as in many other places, of God after the manner of men—who know things with certainty when they come to pass—Who is then said to know a thing, when it is notorious and evident to a man's self and others by some remarkable effect. Thus David prayed that God would search and know his heart, and his thoughts, Psalm 139:23, though David had before professed twenty-one verses earlier that God understood his thought afar off, Psalm 139:2.

God by trying Abraham made it manifest to others, to all the world, to all that should hear of or read this account of things, that Abraham was a man that feared God, loved him, believed in him, and obeyed him.

Accordingly, now I have what I designed and willed; now I have made you and others to know is the proper understanding of such passages.

AMR
 

Lon

Active member

Yep, "Who God IS." Not whom He will become. Not whom He was differently than yesterday. :up:

Sure it contributes to our understanding of God, as do all historical accounts in Scripture. That said, when we go off formulating doctrine based upon historical matters, all the while ignoring or reading into the didactic passages in Scripture related to the topic at hand, we have wandered into the weeds of proper interpretation of Scripture. If we rely upon historical accounts, giving them preference over the full counsel of Scripture, we have ignored the archetypal and ectypal aspects of Scripture. See the attached for a basic introduction of these aspects.
▲▲▲ This ▲▲▲
 

Rosenritter

New member
Again, the action never happened. I thoroughly believe (and scripturally) that God knows our thoughts, hears, and intentions. There is no 'discovered now' with God.

Speculative, but it is still better than other Open Theists I've talked to. You at least have God knowing the intention, thinking, and heart of man (Abraham) :up:

If we accept what Jesus said that one can commit adultery by lusting in their heart, I think it should not need further proof that Abraham could have committed to sacrificing Isaac without the action being physically completed. As such, again I would point to the text which literally says that there is indeed a "discovered now" with God. I can first believe the text, and let our understanding of "how" fall into line on that foundation.

Absolutely disagree. We know from other scriptures that God is 'greater than our hearts' and further, knows them implicitly.

God knows what can be known. If our hearts are undecided or not yet settled, then he also knows that. It seems that you object to the concept that God would know when our hearts are not yet settled.

Even Peter, talking of Jesus asking "Do you love me?" says implicitly: "Lord you know!" Sorry, I just don't see your reasoning as logically holding up against such scriptural truths. It either looks to me as if you are ignorant of them or not logical in which you will adhere to.

Again, Jesus would know of Peter's heart what could be known, including his degree of love and/or commitment, or to what degree Peter needed to be further tested so as to sift Peter's heart to where it would be decided. This again seems to go to the concept that I believe that God knows when our hearts cannot yet be known (are not yet decided) but this is a disagreeable concept for a presupposition that does not allow for God's creation to have free will.

So can you present some examples that are on your mind? I've only come across a small set of instances that seemed hard to understand, none of which that did not resolve into understanding.

Of course this is always the Open/Traditional playing field. It just has to happen that assertion is the playing field action, because we will not look at what each of us believes is untenable, scripturally. The only thing I can hope for, is that scripture cannot return void without accomplishing God's purpose, but that's pretty Calvinistic. I'm also very convinced that Only God's intent and desires matter anyway.


Yet God does seem to be very concerned about our intents and desires, even so much as to clarify that sin is more than a physical act, but the desire and intention of our hearts.
It makes me fairly staunch in my disagreement here, hence 1) God knew perfectly even before it ever occurred by scriptural necessity and 2) No change after because God doesn't 'learn' anything. He is God. He knows implicitly. It 'looks' like a man-made, finite, limited statement from Open Theism to me. I realize we get the same as Calvinists, but scripture is more important than what I or you 'think.' It matters more what God does, who He is, and what He thinks. I can sit with John the Baptist decreasing while He increases. Its not my time, its His.

I lost you here. It sounds like you are thinking of a specific example here but I don't know what that example is. I'd also point out that the Open Theist also sees the Calvinist stance as imposing its thoughts on the scripture, rather than simply accepting that the scripture is more important that what you or I think. Haven't we already heard that Open is faulted for being "too literal" in its reading of various passages?

Spoiler
I have had philosophy classes BUT I didn't get these thoughts from there or from Augustine or Plato or Aristotle. I got them from scriptures. That said, metaphysical thinking only happens with one out of ten people. In the same way God's truths with mathematics are true, whether one has the capacity to apprehend higher math, God's metaphysical truths are just as true. You cannot dismiss them. Need to know them? Only, imho, if you are trying to teach His higher truths. Then? Absolutely. You may be an awesome general math kinda guy or gal, but something is missing if by the same token such a one is ignorant of higher math principles. In this case, knowing God's character is very important to this story of Abraham and his son: So much so, that Hebrew scholars have recognized the need to give caution to translation work. Ancient Hebrew is not an exacting language. It often conveyed broad thoughts and translation had to use context for meanings. In this case, in my studied opinion, 'now I know' is a supposition by the translators. "
Henceforth shall it be made known" is part and parcel to Moses writing it down, thus makes the better sense "It shall be made known" fits.

Just saying that I would probably be receiving criticism if I was saying that the passage needed to be translated differently from (almost) every other English translation to fit my understanding. I know that I criticize Gregory and Fine Linen for this concerning Universalist claims.
 

Rosenritter

New member
Again, the action never happened. I thoroughly believe (and scripturally) that God knows our thoughts, hears, and intentions. There is no 'discovered now' with God.

Speculative, but it is still better than other Open Theists I've talked to. You at least have God knowing the intention, thinking, and heart of man (Abraham) :up:

If we accept what Jesus said that one can commit adultery by lusting in their heart, I think it should not need further proof that Abraham could have committed to sacrificing Isaac without the action being physically completed. As such, again I would point to the text which literally says that there is indeed a "discovered now" with God. I can first believe the text, and let our understanding of "how" fall into line on that foundation.

Absolutely disagree. We know from other scriptures that God is 'greater than our hearts' and further, knows them implicitly.

God knows what can be known. If our hearts are undecided or not yet settled, then he also knows that. It seems that you object to the concept that God would know when our hearts are not yet settled.

Even Peter, talking of Jesus asking "Do you love me?" says implicitly: "Lord you know!" Sorry, I just don't see your reasoning as logically holding up against such scriptural truths. It either looks to me as if you are ignorant of them or not logical in which you will adhere to.

Again, Jesus would know of Peter's heart what could be known, including his degree of love and/or commitment, or to what degree Peter needed to be further tested so as to sift Peter's heart to where it would be decided. This again seems to go to the concept that I believe that God knows when our hearts cannot yet be known (are not yet decided) but this is a disagreeable concept for a presupposition that does not allow for God's creation to have free will.

So can you present some examples that are on your mind? I've only come across a small set of instances that seemed hard to understand, none of which that did not resolve into understanding.

Of course this is always the Open/Traditional playing field. It just has to happen that assertion is the playing field action, because we will not look at what each of us believes is untenable, scripturally. The only thing I can hope for, is that scripture cannot return void without accomplishing God's purpose, but that's pretty Calvinistic. I'm also very convinced that Only God's intent and desires matter anyway.
Yet God does seem to be very concerned about our intents and desires, even so much as to clarify that sin is more than a physical act, but the desire and intention of our hearts.
It makes me fairly staunch in my disagreement here, hence 1) God knew perfectly even before it ever occurred by scriptural necessity and 2) No change after because God doesn't 'learn' anything. He is God. He knows implicitly. It 'looks' like a man-made, finite, limited statement from Open Theism to me. I realize we get the same as Calvinists, but scripture is more important than what I or you 'think.' It matters more what God does, who He is, and what He thinks. I can sit with John the Baptist decreasing while He increases. Its not my time, its His.

I lost you here. It sounds like you are thinking of a specific example here but I don't know what that example is. I'd also point out that the Open Theist also sees the Calvinist stance as imposing its thoughts on the scripture, rather than simply accepting that the scripture is more important that what you or I think. Haven't we already heard that Open is faulted for being "too literal" in its reading of various passages?

Spoiler
I have had philosophy classes BUT I didn't get these thoughts from there or from Augustine or Plato or Aristotle. I got them from scriptures. That said, metaphysical thinking only happens with one out of ten people. In the same way God's truths with mathematics are true, whether one has the capacity to apprehend higher math, God's metaphysical truths are just as true. You cannot dismiss them. Need to know them? Only, imho, if you are trying to teach His higher truths. Then? Absolutely. You may be an awesome general math kinda guy or gal, but something is missing if by the same token such a one is ignorant of higher math principles. In this case, knowing God's character is very important to this story of Abraham and his son: So much so, that Hebrew scholars have recognized the need to give caution to translation work. Ancient Hebrew is not an exacting language. It often conveyed broad thoughts and translation had to use context for meanings. In this case, in my studied opinion, 'now I know' is a supposition by the translators. "
Henceforth shall it be made known" is part and parcel to Moses writing it down, thus makes the better sense "It shall be made known" fits.

Just saying that I would probably be receiving criticism if I was saying that the passage needed to be translated differently from (almost) every other English translation to fit my understanding. I know that I criticize Gregory and Fine Linen for this concerning Universalist claims.
 

Rosenritter

New member
I disagree. It isn't that God needs to reach into 'our' world, but that He NEEDS to bring us to His. THAT was what was lost at the Fall: A necessary relationship with God. John 15:5 Why did Adam die? The 'time' factor wasn't important. Adam did not instantly drop dead. Rather, He was cut off from the Only Life. John 15:5 isn't a simile, it is 100% exact, as far as I understand the scriptures. It isn't just 'being' with Jesus, it is Abiding (Living/staying) in and with Him. There is no life without Him. Dead branches. Cut-off. Thrown away. That's what was lost at the Fall.

If John 15:5 "isn't a simile but 100% exact" then we are literally branches and Jesus is literally a vine, a green piece of plant matter that is food for the beast of the field. I think that you may be using the word "exact" in a metaphorical sense.

Nobody, not even you, has ever changed his/her mind. You have the same mind as always you did. It is VERY problematic to suggest God changes His, if you and I, finite humans, in need of change, never do. Literally, it required an act of God (your salvation/new createdness), to 'change' your mind. You couldn't do it. Nobody 'can' change their mind. God never does because He has nothing to change. How could His perfect, loving will change? For the better? :nono: For the worse? :nono: Logically, God has NEVER changed His mind. He cannot love you any more, can He? He cannot 'do better' than He already does, can He?

I was going to say something witty here... but I changed my mind.

Habakkuk 1:11 KJV
(11) Then shall his mind change, and he shall pass over, and offend, imputing this his power unto his god.
 

Rosenritter

New member
Sure it contributes to our understanding of God, as do all historical accounts in Scripture. That said, when we go off formulating doctrine based upon historical matters, all the while ignoring or reading into the didactic passages in Scripture related to the topic at hand, we have wandered into the weeds of proper interpretation of Scripture. If we rely upon historical accounts, giving them preference over the full counsel of Scripture, we have ignored the archetypal and ectypal aspects of Scripture. See the attached for a basic introduction of these aspects.
View attachment 26641

Can someone translate that into the vernacular of the common folk?
 

Rosenritter

New member
Appealing to selective evidence to make a claim that God does not know something is where this leads. For example, does the claim it was because Abraham did what he did that the Lord now knew Abraham was a faithful covenant partner (Gen 22:12) really withstand the evidence in Scripture's plain teachings about the knowledge of God?

Genesis 22 does not count as scripture that teaches the knowledge of God? Seeing that Genesis was written before any of these theories of "Closed Time" and knowledge of things unknowable, between these two shouldn't we choose Genesis as our choice of foundation?

To make such a bold claim is to ignore the related texts to this passage, especially Hebrews 11:19, which says, "He (Abraham) considered that God is able to raise men (Isaac) even from the dead; from which he also received him back as a type." If we exposit the passage, it demonstrates without any doubt that Abraham had a God-fearing heart leading up to his sacrifice of Isaac. Since God knows this—all openists acknowledge God has perfect knowledge of the past and present—it is absolutely error to interpret Gen 22:12 as saying that when Abraham lifted the knife did God 'learn' that Abraham feared God. It is easy to make the Bible say what we want it to say when we only appeal to certain texts and certain parts of certain texts.

There is quite a bit of variance with simply knowing and fearing before one could say it constitutes a fully formed faith. Some people say they believe in God, and does not James say that even the devils believe in God, and tremble? The young man wanted to follow Christ, yet his faith was not so determined that he was willing to sell all that he had. God knew the heart of Abraham to know that he was ready for this trial of his faith.

It is not as though God was ignorant before how things would issue; for God knew from all eternity what Abraham would be, and what he would do, having determined to bestow that grace upon him, and work it in him, which would influence and enable him to act the part he did. God knew full well beforehand what would be the consequence of such a trial of Abraham.

That there. Above. In bold. Is an example of placing one's own presuppositions on top of the text. Right there.

And the point of this is that the text itself (which we must assume is a true and inspired accounting of the Holy Ghost) says that God did not know beforehand the exact results of this test.
 
Top