On the omniscience of God

Lon

Well-known member
If God is omniscient which He is,
The proposition is sound, but an Open Theist would need the above proved. If however you meant "Let's say that nobody debated that God was omniscient..."
why do men believe in Open Theism
"...then would men be able to be Open Theists?" ...could be meaningfully answered. The answer would be 'no.' I believe from a physics standpoint (all created things) that we can show that " God knows all things knowable" (Open Theist paradigm given as true), necessarily applies to all created things, if Einstein's theory is consistently true (E=mc2). If we could/can show Peter meant "everything" literally when he said "all things," John 21:17 (perhaps quoting Psalm 139:1-6) we could prove omniscience from scripture (among other scripture considerations).

I do believe there is an onus, upon me, to show why I believe they do teach exactly that. A few scriptures do come to mind (listed in thread now). Foreknowledge is another: the 'literal' meaning is "knows" (not implication - 'knows' implicitly) "beforehand." It is at least strong evidence for the proposition. The immediate verse following John 21:18 is a revelation of foreknowledge regarding Peter's end of life. If there were any qualification we could infer, we'd truly want to see it in scripture: some incredibly pedantic expiation of 'all things that "I" can actually know.' The only thing we have that would even call us to question, would be "Adam where are you?" as if God didn't know.
While one and the other (Omniscience vs. limited) have implications that can assault our theology understanding, I've reckoned that the Open paradigm does more damage to what I expect to be Biblically true as well as doesn't ring true with all of scripture. While it may seem "Adam, where are you?" is damaged by omniscience, it is ever my understanding that God uses scriptures instructionally for 'my' (all men) understanding, thus does anthropomorphize language to us. He didn't ever need to 'come down.' If you follow: God could have sent an angel. It is always, rather, because the men (Adam, Lot) needed God's interaction. It necessitates that we realize God came not to 'find out' but 'to interact.' I do see dilemma, in that "If not I will know" implies His reason (not clearly stated) for 'coming down,' but that is rather an implication. Reading the rest of Genesis 18, we get the sense that both Abraham and God knew how many were righteous. Sodom and Gomorrah were not spared.
 

ttruscott

Active member
God knows all things knowable
the pagans like to add: from eternity past to eternity future, a good bit of logic if you don't know GOD which the Church accepted even though it conflicts directly with HIS other attributes of lovinging, righteous justice.

IF this definition of omniscience is true, all HE had to do to keep hell empty, as HE has told us was HIS desire and pleasure, was to not create those who HE knew would end in hell. The fact HE did create them is all the proof I need to see that we must redo the definition of HIS omniscience because a loving righteous and just Being would never knowing create those to eternal damnation for no good reason.
 
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Lon

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the pagans like to add: from eternity past to eternity future, a good bit of logic if you don't know GOD which the Church accepted even though it conflicts directly with HIS other attributes of lovinging, righteous justice.
Problem: It is a surmised assumption based on the line of reasoning that also assumes a truth. It isn't really engaging truth (of scripture) but sidestepping it to embrace an assumption. In this case "pagan" enters as a pejorative (much like "Greeks"). It next assumes that logic and love for God are in conflict. Even Clete would step in here against that blanketed assertion: it needs work. Finally, It doesn't, as far as 'my' apprehension, conflict at all with loving righteousness or justice.
IF this definition of omniscience is true, all HE had to do to keep hell empty, as HE has told us was HIS desire and pleasure, was to not create those who HE knew would end in hell. The fact HE did create them is all the proof I need to see that we must redo the definition of HIS omniscience because a loving righteous and just Being would never knowing create those to eternal damnation for no good reason.
My perspective: the parable of the wheat and tares rings true and accurate for my grasp:

Matthew 13:24b-29 “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; 25 but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way. 26 But when the grain had sprouted and produced a crop, then the tares also appeared. 27 So the servants of the owner came and said to him, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?’ 28 He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, ‘Do you want us then to go and gather them up?’ 29 But he said, ‘No, lest while you gather up the tares you also uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.” ’ ”

While it may not seem 'loving' the parable is very loving. The reason given to answer your posit, from the parable is love and concern that no wheat is harmed. It explains why we go through what we go through in life through difficulty. If I may, the parable speaks both to traditional and Open Theism concerns well. It also works both for omniscience or what 'all things knowable.'

I've stated in the past that 'all things knowable' would also mean where Adam and Eve were. Such was wholly knowable without having to 'come down' because David reminds us nothing can flee from His presence "Omnipresence," Psalms 139: 7–8 "You are already there, wherever I go" and it is wholly 'knowable.' It means even many Open Theists deny that God didn't know where Adam was. It was why Sanders asked Enyart: It is one story that challenges Open paradigms.
 

Lon

Well-known member


Will Duffy (I believe this one was at an earlier date Dec 1, 2017) makes mistakes and when he argues for one thing and 'assumes' the second part of a truth. Open Theism most often misrepresents views it doesn't grasp and often assumes its own preference like "Change."
It goes back to a clock analogy as before: Will would argue a clock changes and yet I'd argue that if that is the kind of 'change' he is advocating, it is more than Calvinistic, it is fatalism where the clock is 'fated' to change 1) with no say and 2) with no ability but to 'change' and 'choose' from a very limited repertoire. Such a definition scope of 'change' isn't meaningful for these discussions. There needs to be a LOT more defining of terms and agreement upon them. I noticed again, in this debate, part of it could have proceeded a bit better upon definitions agreement.

Will is correct that prayer doesn't 'change.' It 'makes.' Matt did a good job of explaining his position about the future (almost agreeing with Open Theists that the future is somewhat open).

I'm more aligned with AMR's position on this one, that the future if fully known with our prayers already ordained as well. For me, prayer doesn't 'change' but 'makes' something happen. Whenever we interact, like here in thread, we aren't so much 'change' agents as people who influence one another. I'd not say your future was 'changed' because I exist and have influence, but that I've simply made it with you and you with me.

Yes, Will believes with Open Theists, that the future will 'change' but he incorrectly assumes 'change' is necessary for God or that 'new' is necessary. They are loaded words where I believe better words fit. If we aren't exacting in our theology, then the inaccuracies will play a role in misinforming our theologies respectively.

The being of God is 1) Already eternal, thus anything 'new' is ALREADY eternal. In that sense, no, just as Lamentations declares "There is nothing new under the sun." If something is 'already' it already doesn't fit the definition of 'new.' 2) Such things WILL be new to us, if we have never seen or heard them before, BECAUSE we are finite-growing-toward-the-infinite. We sometimes confuse the two and it does hurt our theology.



Most of Duffy's proofs are from a desired premise, like 'new' thus circular. It assumes one to prove the other.

Hezekiah: God was telling the truth. IN FACT, 'telling Hezekiah' MADE Hezekiah live longer o_O

No Will. God is not constrained by His own Unchangeable will. You are missing, again, that 'without Him, NOTHING comes into being, that comes into being' (Colossians 1).

Let us see if Will Duffy is correct:

Will: There are no verses (in the Bible)that say God is outside of time.

First of all, clarification: We do not say God is wholly outside of time. We say He is relational to, yet unconstrained by it. Further, we say time is created.

John 17:5 '...before the cosmos existed...'Will Duffy shows no grasp of Einstein's theory of relativity nor E=Mc2. Both are proven true in all kinds of experiments and consistently reveal that time is 'relative' not a constant. No physicist to date has been able to assail the theory, just the opposite: That the theory is proven accurate for all predictions about time and the universe: that it is relative and not a constant.

Finally then: 2 Timothy 1:9 Literally before time began 0.o

Will: Never an eternal now.
"...same Yesterday, Today, and Forever..."
"...before...was...<ahem> --> "Am"

Sorry Will.

Will: No verse that says God created time.
I'll give this one but if you understand 2 Timothy 1:9, where then did 'time begin?' 🤔

Will: No verse that says God knew us before we were conceived.

Er, no. First of all David says literally "You knit me in my mother's womb." Nobody starts a sweater before they just begin 'knitting' willynilly. This doesn't even make sense, Will.

Will: There are no scriptures showing God 'can' change the past.
Non sequitur: You'd have to admit that He can. Changing the past is literally an act. Changing records, wiping memories, altering all ensuing consequences would make it literally like it didn't happen. This is just a logically consistent position. It is a bit moot for any discussion, it is simply an arguing point that even Will cannot defend to any successful degree. He nor I likely know of a scripture that says God can or cannot. Mark 14:16 is as close as I remember scripture coming to the idea: "It'd be better if that man were never born."

In another sense, both the Open Theist and the rest of Christendom wouldn't be caught up in Him changing history. 1) we literally wouldn't know it and 2) it affects our theology outcome similarly so isn't a prime point of discussion. The rest of Christianity believe He works 'all things to the good' such that a redo isn't something necessary. I simply believe, we who have a logic, follow that God could, as Romans 9 says, do whatever He wants with His own creation, and 'redos' while unecessary are certainly possibly/plausible.

Part of this Open conundrum is due to how we as finite beings conceive of the 'past.' We see it as indelible but in every sense that it is tied to our physical existence, it is but an aspect. It may be difficult to wrap the mind around, but Einstein's theory made past/present/and future more akin to 'eternal now' (not even so much Greeks at this point as modern physical science, so Will Duffy was wrong on this point, for blaming Greeks as well). If one doesn't grasp that past/present/and future are more fluid, they will continue to think of God in terms of His being a product at worst, coeternal at best, with the universe. It is not His maker, He rather its. It is a huge flip in the mind that must be grasped else one will continue to think like an Open Theist. Important? No, at least for me, it is better than other kinds of alternatives out there. I'd much rather see men and women wrestling with God at this level, than ignoring their scriptures or grasping scriptures on a superstitious level as many denominations have done/still do. I do believe I can reason with Open Theists.

Will: No verse that says God knows everything that will ever happen.

In those exact words? I agree, I don't recall them. In something that means exactly that? Nope. David was asking God if Saul would find Him if he and his men went one way. God said 'yep.' Prophecy is ability to either 'see or make' (or both) something in the future happen.

Even by Open standards, TOL member Godrulz and Knight have said "God is a master chess player, He knows every move." If that's the case, then it is the definition of foreknowledge. The Bible says God literally 'knows' "beforehand." It may not lead to knowing 'everything' but it certainly pinpoints a genuine ability to know beforehand. Peter told Jesus "Lord you know all things." Did he miss 'about me'? Was that the part of scripture left out? 🤔

Will Duffy: God doesn't decree everything to happen. It is not found in scripture but theology and philosophy.

Acts 4:27–28 "according to Your predestined plan"
It isn't proof again of 'everything' but how did the Apostles know? James 4 specifically (SPECIFICALLY mind you) says: James 4:13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.

Proverbs 3:5,6 and 16:9 are prohibitions against thinking God doesn't decree.

While I might give Will some space for what he believes is not 'emphatic' in scripture, I have to call his complete scripture knowledge into question, because scripture talks much about God's decrees. Every little thing? From James, Job and other passages, it'd seem so and/or at the very least, that we should live as if we assume so, not assume not, so much so that James calls the other 'sin' and 'not good.' Whatever we Christians believe, we don't want it to ever fall into the camp of 'evil,boastful,' and 'not good.'

Will: There are dozens of verses that say "God changed His mind." Literally none. There isn't one verse in the whole of the Bible that uses that very modern colloquial term. Literally none. "Changing one's mind" is literally not possible. Brain transplants? Nope. Literally think a different way than your own personality already dictates? Nope. Worse: Does God EVER do wrong? (no) There are indeed scriptures that say "God repented." The word is more akin to 'relented' than the idea most attributed to it by Open Theists "changed His mind." In fact, in most of the passages Will addresses, there has already been 'options' to influence behavior and outcomes.

Finally, Will talks of Jesus 'growing' and 'learning obedience' as well as God 'becoming' Creator.

For the most part, these are arguments 'inside' and 'experiencing' time from man's perspective. Again, if one grasps Einstein's theory of relativity, the greater something is 'in' the universe (let alone out of it), then 'learned' is about that thing/being (Jesus) going through the thing 'in' time, not experiencing it as the whole.

Illustration: When I put my hand in the fish tank, I'm partially wet, but I'm mostly dry. In the same sense, God is relational to us. He is 'partially' in time thus partially experiencing while with us, our constraints. It is what is meant in Philippians 2:5-10 and John 1:1-18

And and explanation: When I made my fishtank, I had all the materials, the dirt, the grasses, the rocks, the filters, the lights, and the water. While I am not a fish, I would in a sense 'experience' all the things I already know, if I could shrink down and become a fish. God already knows what man is. Colossians 1:15ff says nothing that exists that exists without Him and all things came from Him. In Genesis, God spoke and all became. All of finite man's thoughts are tied to this physical universe. We have no concept of speaking anything literally into existence from a being that has no mouth. We are caught in anthropomorphic understandings.

Back to Einstein, the greater one is in the universe, the less time affects the observer. As the observer of the whole of the universe, nothing would appear to move, but simultaneously and this is the theory proven by Einstein's relativity.

Whatever part of God 'emptied Himself' in Philippians is the part that experiences like you and I while God is still outside of the physical parameters (and inside) of the universe, thus we necessarily have to say God is both relational to (in) and apart (out) of the universe at the same time. It 'seems' contradictory at face value, but I believe this part of the discussion proves out that any one can follow and grasp the point.

Will's closing remarks at the 29 minute mark then, are shown inaccurate.

Matt Slick: Open Theism is akin to Mormonism

I had posted on CARM a few times, but the heavy-handed authoritarianism that comes from Matt in debate here, is also present on the CARM website. After one warning, I realized, not being 'my' website, that I wasn't going to take that, having a fair share of scripture myself.

In Matt's defense, Will is a bit like that too, so I understood some of Matt's frustration during the debate.

Psalm 139:16 Job 14:45 His days are determined.
God can declare.

Matt is correct, but these do not show exhaustively.

Foreknowledge isn't a force (can be).

Matt seems to desire to not restrict 'freewill.'

I'm not committed to a necessity to defend freewill at all, because for me, it is the mark of our fallen nature. I was more free before sin. My will was more free. Now instead I agree with Paul in Romans 6 and 7 "the good I want to do" ('free'will?) I don't do and that which I do not want to do (a will that is truly 'free?') I do.

Matt talks about immutable characteristics which most Open Theists I've come across also believe. In the infancy of debate with Open Theists, I think this had to be hammered out but Open Theists don't deny God's immutable character, just believe He interacts.

Matt does a good job of addressing "it did not enter my mind" from Open Theism by showing that it 'had crossed His mind" in Deuteronomy.

Will asks: Is God 'free.'

Not exactly: "Free" simply means without constraints and God's own character dictates actions. That is why the 'Greeks' had a hard time, logically with the question, but Scriptures do too: "Stand silent, and know 'I' am God." "Be Holy as I'm Holy."

Will: Could God have added another grain of sand to the universe?

Yes, but it answers the question of 'power' not about 'freedom.'

Will: Do you agree that God is not 'free?'

Me: doesn't apply. It is like asking if God could make a rock He cannot pick up.

I'm a bit with Matt on this: "Free" is 'without' restraint so 'defining the term' is important.

Will: Can God write a new song? Can God make a new butterfly?

No: "New" is a finite perspective. For us? Yes. It'd be new to us.

So can God 'decree' something 'new?' For us? Yes. For Him, who knows all things? No. It'd not be new for Him.

Will: God 'cannot' write a new song or create something 'new.' Not exactly: "New" to us. It is part of the relational yet apart.

Will: Do you agree that God cannot do something that He did not decree.

Me: another way of asking if God can do something 'new.'
New for us, not to Him.

Will: Did Jesus have to 'ability' to call angels?
Did God not have the ability to deliver Jesus?

He had ability but the 'decree' was to save man through Jesus.

I'm not sure if Will is trying to fight for 'what ifs' and ability to 'do other.' I can say to my brother, 'put your fists down, I can fight for myself.' It doesn't mean I have to fight. There is no lie in saying "I can fight if I want to do so."

Matt, I believe is correct that Will conflates ability and decree.

Will: God hopes

Romans 15:13 "God of Hope" Read Romans 15:12, not the God 'Who hopes' but God as the object of hope of "the Gentiles."


Will Duffy: It did not enter God's mind that Hinnom would offer women to Molech.

Me: No, It did not enter His mind 'to command them' to do this. We have to pay attention to actual phrases in the Bible. Matt Slick showed previously God knew it was happening. We must therefore read Jeremiah 32:35 as it never entering God's mind, not that they did it but that they should think God would command such a thing. Literally "It isn't something I'd ever ask of anybody, ever!"

In Jeremiah 32:35, it isn't that He didn't have knowledge, but not such a wicked command.

Will Duffy: What about Isaiah 5 where God expected Israel to turn to Him?

1) Then Christ would have never been prophesied.
2) Isaiah said "let ME sing a song 'for' God (my Beloved)." It needs to be read as Isaiah's song with poetic liberty that puts onus upon men for their unfaithfulness. Did God 'expect' good grapes?

Open Theist tend to have God working 'on the fly.'
Isaiah 5:7 gives a clearer picture of this 'expectation.' It isn't a God caught unaware (the prophets had already told them what would happen 'if' so it'd be wrong to think of 'expectation' as bewilderment as such an idea does damage to the rest of scripture), but that God demands responsibility. That we are responsible is His expectation. It doesn't mean surprised.

Will got lost in the story: God didn't literally build a winepress.


Will: What does it mean that God regretted?

It doesn't mean a second-guess of His own actions, but the actions that took place.

Will: Then didn't God know they were going to be bad?

Me: Yes, but it simply shows God's thoughts while going through that part with men. He is both relational and apart from His creation.

It is also very important to know the difference between 'translation' and actual. Nacham doesn't mean "change mind" as previously discussed (very modern colloquialism that is very inaccurate and problematic for Hebrew translation). It means literally 'to sigh deeply.'

Will said God knew where Adam and Eve were. Kudos Will. Exactly right.

I disagree with Matt: God in no way 'changes His mind.' It never happens.

Will: "Every time God 'repents' means He regrets something."
Incorrect. It is a Hebrew word that means 'to sigh heavily.' From that are all kinds of ideas that often fly wild (let alone wide) of the mark. It is problematic and greatly affects one's theology to use a colloquialism from the 20th century that isn't even possible. Literally nobody can change their mind. Yes, we grasp a bit of the meaning when I say "I'm doing something different" but only because I'm not omniscient. I'm human. I STILL never change my mind. It is way more accurate to say: we ran out of time so will do C instead of B. It is a change in action, not mind. My mind is still back there wanting B. I literally did not change my mind. It is much more problematic as an idiom when trying to attribute something so inaccurate to the mind and actions of God.



Jeremiah 18 if that nation repents, I'll no longer do what I was going to do.
Not a change of mind: again simply an action. This consequence follows this action, this other consequence follow this other action: Like driving through a stop light. If Green, good consequence. If red, poor consequence. The light literally doesn't change its mind nor did the driver. No change of mind was going on. If I 'control' the light (a sensor could have judged Nineveh). Whether God is actively controlling the light or whether there was a 'switch' already in place, it requires no 'change of mind.' It really is a poor concept for understanding actions and consequences.

Will Duffy: Does God test people?

Yes, for them.

Will might have asked: Did "Now I know that you have not witheld your son" mean God didn't know, but now He does? Does He learn something from the test?
Me: No. "Now I know" is a translation.

Will: Do you believe in God's impeccability?
Me: Yes. Jesus could not have sinned.

Will: Was God the Son more perfect with one nature or two?

Me: Yes! Perfection is perfection.

Matt: Does God's Divine Holy Trinitarian nature change? He is immutable?

Will: Yes

Matt: When Jesus became a man, there was no change
WIll: Mark 13:32 "Only the Father knows the hour."
Matt: Revelation 19:12 Jesus' Name that only He knows.

Matt: Are the laws of logic unchangeable?

Will: No

Me: Yes. Logic is simply the disciplined study of meaning and is wholly an apprehension of man.

"Truth" rather, is the absolute unchanging reality of God. We use 'logic' (we study and find meaning) by observing the unchanging reality of God.

Jesus didn't say "true worshippers must worship Him in Logic and Spirit" but "Spirit and Truth."

Matt: The laws of logic are the emmination of the character of God.

Me: Disagree. "Logic" and "Truth" are not synonymous terms.

When God says Come let us reason "logic" can be be interchanged here. When we come to God we bring 'our' apprehension and ability (form of logic) to His (not just logic but all that is true).

Matt: Does God know all of Himself
Will: No.

Will: God cannot have love without 'risk.'
Me: Not true else Adam and Eve didn't love Him.

Will: God can choose not to be Holy. God can choose to sin.

Matt: Did God fore'know' He was going to make the earth?
Will: in a nutshell, didn't 'know' but had more akin to 'forethought'

Me: One thing from the debate: Both sides did a good job of exposing chinks/holes in the other's theological armor. Questions that get us to think more deeply about our own theological position are very worthy of our time.


Matt: Do you believe in God's Aseity (self-sufficiency).
Will: Yes

Matt: Is your will coerced or independent?
Will: coerced
Matt: How do you know you have an uncoerced will?
Will: I have autonomous freewill, God has autonomous freewill

Matt: Do you pray?
Will: Yes but why do Calvinists if everyone is already predestined?
Matt: Why would an Open Theist pray for anyone who has a completely autonomous freewill (when its not possible)?


Me: Oddly, I've not heard most Open Theists talk about an autonomous freewill. Most I've talked to believe 'free' is not completely autonomous. For instance: I cannot spring feathers and fly. Meaning? I don't even have the 'power' to be completely free.

Matt: 2 Timothy 1:29 Why does God grant us repentance.
John 6:65 Cannot come to me, unless it has been granted.
Philippians 1:29

John 1:13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Matt: Proverbs 16:4 God makes all things, even the wicked for the day of evil.

Will: I don't believe that.

Matt: Freewill is the ability to make uncoerced decisions.

Matt: is the ability of man to make a choice, caused?
Will: No, autonomous.

Matt: Can God lie?
Will: Yes, to the wicked.

Matt: Can God sin?
Will: Yes.

Matt: God does not have the ability to sin.
Will: Confusing ability with desire
Matt: A God who can lie is from
From Plato, Greeks, Islam, Socinians

Matt: Ontological nature of God prevents Him lying or sin.

Will: Matt had a difficult time answering whether or not God could have done differently with the universe or 'new' things.

Will: God is not bound by anything

Will: The incarnation shows God exists in sequence and has a past, and went from one nature to two. Will: perfection doesn't mean changeless. A perfect baby grows to be a man....

Me: Not the definition of perfection. Matthew 5:48

"best"

Will: In Jonah, Nineveh wasn't destroyed.

Me: Used for everyone to show their theological perspective. Again: it is problematic to say God 'repents' as something in His mind. It is an action verb that simply means 'do something different' not 'change one's mind.'

Will: God takes risks is negative I've been told.

Me: True. It is playing a dice game with lives.

Will: Freewill is necessary for love to exist

Me: Not true.


Matt: Will failed to recognize that foreknowledge is descriptive, not causative.

(reason why some are double-pred Calvinists and why most Open Theists press the problem to all Calvinists).

Matt, even with a bit of authoritarian heavy-handedness, does a fairly good job of handling Calvinist discussion.

Matt: Yes, I believe God experiences sequence.

Me: Me too, but it is a partiality.

Matt: Incarnation isn't ontology change (His nature doesn't and didn't change).

Me: Relativity helps: The whole does not experience on the level of a part BUT Jesus entered the world (part).

Matt: Num 23:19 God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?

Titus 1:2 2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began

Hebrews 6:18 That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us.

Matt: Ephesians 1:5
I'm just quoting scripture.
Presupposition will have you rejecting the word of God.

Me: True.

Matt: A rejection of God 'granting' salvation is an elevation of autonomous freewill

Me: also keeps us from coming to God in thankfulness for many aspects of my own salvation. An autonomous(absolute) free-will strips me of gratitude for things He has done that I would otherwise take credit for.

It'd be like: "Thank you Jesus for saving me!"
Lord Jesus Christ: "You did a lot of it yourself. You chose this."

Bob Enyart: What does it mean that God is outside of Time?

Matt: What did you mean? https://carm.org/about-god/is-god-outside-of-time/

Question: What translations can we trust?
Matt: All of them, just know when an expression has been used, don't get stuck on translation for theology.

Me: We have to use resources to look further into meanings.

Question: Doesn't Psalm 139 just say God knows us at our conception?
Will: Psalm 139:13-16
God can look at our DNA and know a lot about us.

Me: James 4, as discussed tells us not to be presumptuous but instead say 'as the Lord wills.'

We aren't just given an idea that God knitted us in Psalm 139 but that God formed us AND saw our UNFORMED being.

Matt does a good job saying what most Calvinists believe over those of the small extreme group or what Calvinists most get characterized as.

Was my wife destined for me?

Me: Yep, much like Matt.
 

marke

Well-known member


Will Duffy (I believe this one was at an earlier date Dec 1, 2017) makes mistakes and when he argues for one thing and 'assumes' the second part of a truth. Open Theism most often misrepresents views it doesn't grasp and often assumes its own preference like "Change."
It goes back to a clock analogy as before: Will would argue a clock changes and yet I'd argue that if that is the kind of 'change' he is advocating, it is more than Calvinistic, it is fatalism where the clock is 'fated' to change 1) with no say and 2) with no ability but to 'change' and 'choose' from a very limited repertoire. Such a definition scope of 'change' isn't meaningful for these discussions. There needs to be a LOT more defining of terms and agreement upon them. I noticed again, in this debate, part of it could have proceeded a bit better upon definitions agreement.
Because God is as present and at the same 'time' in the end as He is in the beginning He cannot help but know the end from the beginning. He does not mandate and control events and people so things will turn out the way He 'planned.' He knows how things will turn out because he dwells in eternity which is not bound by time.
 
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Lon

Well-known member
Because God is as present and at the same 'time' in the end as He is in the beginning He cannot help but know the end from the beginning. He does not mandate and control events and people so things will turn out the way He 'planned.' He knows how things will turn out because he dwells in eternity which is not bound by time.
It makes sense if explained this way, but I really do appreciate that Open Theists make me think, pray, and study. -Lon
 

oatmeal

Well-known member
Been watching a lot of Soteriology101 videos recently, in which Dr. Leighton Flowers consistently shows the errors of Calvinism, and promotes "Provisionism," which teaches that God has provided a way of salvation for mankind. (I definitely recommend listening to his shows on YT.)

But he pokes at the Open Theist camp (in love, of course) saying that he rejects our (as I am an Open Theist, too) view of God's omniscience, which is that God can know all things knowable, but also that God does not know the future. He obviously (because his show isn't really about Open Theism so much as it is Provisionism and attacking Calvinism,

I figured I'd start this thread to discuss what it means for God to be omniscient.
Omniscient meaning all knowing, I presume that is your defininition.

For me, that begs many questions. If we look at two Greek words for "to know" we have oida, meaning to mentally perceive, and ginosko, meaning to know by experience. I can understand God knowing, oida, but not ginosko, for to experience something is far different than simply being aware of something. God is good always because God is love and God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. Does God know evil because He has done evil? No, God does not do evil, although He does permit it to happen because He gave His intelligent beings, ie, man and angels, free will. Not all angels chose to obey God, thus Lucifer, the dragon was cast down from heaven. Man, obviously, does not obey God all the time, with the notable exception of His only begotten son, Jesus Christ, who always did the Father's will.

Thus we need to define "to know"
 
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