Who knew there were so many Mormon compatibilists?

March 23, 2006    By: Geoff J @ 10:13 am   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

It never ceases to amaze me how many Mormons will, when push comes to shove, choose to believe in a fixed future and a fated existence instead of an open future and a robust version of free will. What gives? (more…)

A Life at the Improv

October 3, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 1:57 pm   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

Bryce’s recent post has reignited a small discussion about God’s foreknowledge. I thought I would make a few comments that tie some of my former posts together on the subject. (more…)

The Natural Man = Causally Determined Man?

March 26, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 11:49 pm   Category: Determinism vs. free will,Foreknowledge,Theology

My recent post asserting that exhaustive foreknowledge is a faith crippling and pernicious doctrine spurred a teensy, tiny debate… The exchange has been a very interesting one. I’d summarize that debate, but that wouldn’t do it justice so you’ll have to check it out yourself. One of the challenges posed to me and those of like mind was: “Ok, if God doesn’t see the exact future just how does he pull off prophecy, let alone have assurance things will go his way?” If I wasn’t such a sucker for a challenge I would just say “God is just that smart. It may seem difficult, but at least it is not a paradox like trying to reconcile free agency and a fixed future”. But of course I am a sucker for a challenge so here is a model of how he might pull this off. This is a continuation of my earlier post called “How God could figure out the future without foreknowledge.(more…)

The Faith-Crippling Doctrine of Absolute Foreknowledge

March 21, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 6:14 pm   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

I have already discussed the idea of how absolute foreknowledge would actually be quite useless to God here, here, and here. Steve Hancock brought up the subject again recently over at Splendid Sun. Some people believe absolute foreknowledge and free agency are compatible but I don’t. In fact, I have become increasingly convinced that believing in a fixed future (which is required if God has absolute foreknowledge) is a pernicious and faith-crippling doctrine. (more…)

Twisting God’s arm?

March 2, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 12:51 pm   Category: Foreknowledge,Personal Revelation,Theology

In Sunday school this week I used the term “twisting God’s arm” as a way of describing the process of petitioning the Lord with enough fervency and faith (and sometimes through enough people) to get a mighty miracle. It was a tongue-in-cheek reference and I qualified this term by mentioning God wants his arm twisted in this way by his children. But I have decided that twisting his arm is not the proper analogy for this process. (more…)

Has God decided when the Second Coming will be yet?

February 19, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 10:55 am   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

Before I make those predictions on the timing of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ I promised you earlier, I thought I’d stir things up further by suggesting God probably has not even decided yet when the Second Coming will be. He is probably waiting to see when the time is right. But wait, you say, doesn’t God have perfect foreknowledge? As I have written before — not necessarily. I have been reading Blake Ostler’s marvelous book Exploring Mormon Thought: The Attributes of God and in it he makes very compelling arguments that actual perfect foreknowledge requires a fixed future and a fixed future means we aren’t really freely choosing (even if we think we are). The good news is that, as has been discussed elsewhere in the Bloggernacle, perfect foreknowledge is pretty useless anyway. (more…)

How God could figure out the future without foreknowledge

January 26, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 5:11 am   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

It turns out I missed the point in my last post… While the idea the God might be bound by our time is objectionable to many, the idea that God does not have an exact foreknowledge is the real hot button. So here is how I think God does it! (more…)

Don’t hate me because I’m time-bound

January 25, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 9:17 am   Category: Foreknowledge,Theology

Spurred by discussion threads like this these here, here, and here, I have spent plenty of time contemplating the subjects of God’s foreknowledge and his relationship to time. The big question I have now is what is so awful about a God who resides in our time? (more…)

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