Free Will and Evil

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Free Will and Evil

#1

Post by Forge » Sat Apr 21, 2007 2:50 pm

In a debate, I've been holding the position that evil is needed for free will.

No wait, let me reiterate: I say that the possibility to choose evil is a needed component of free will, whether this evil is actualized or not. I say that if there is no way to choose evil (Rather-poor-example: no tree in the Garden), there can be no free will.

Is this the correct position, or is free will independent of the ability to choose evil? Or is there Option Number 3?

EDIT: more matieral

the Other guy wrote:
Forge wrote:You view evil as something made by God, like lizards and kidneys and Forges. Christianally (), evil is regarded as a choice people make. There we go, God didn't create evil, since it's not a "creatable" thing/
This is going to take some digging on my part, since I can't even remember what book it's in...

"I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things." (Isaiah 45:7)

I grant you, the word used for evil, ra', can also mean woe, calamity, and disaster. It's contrasted to the word shalom, which can mean peace, prosperity, good...

"Out of the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil and good?" (Lamentations 3:38)

Not sure what Hebrew word is used for evil in the above, but I'm near to certain it's not ra'.

The problem with Old Hebrew is that it's basically a language of synonyms. Almost no word in it can be easily translated into another language without some serious debate as to whether or not it's a proper translation. I suspect it has something to do with its age and its isolationism (not its "isolation," mind. It was by no means isolated, but it was very isolationist. New words weren't introduced easily)

In any event, Lamentations and Issiah would seem to suggest that evil is in fact created by God, a stance that pre-Christ Jews would not have contested, since G vs E wasn't a priority for them (rather, the Hebrews had a very Us verses Them attitude, which is not necessarily the same thing)
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Re: Free Will and Evil

#2

Post by B. W. » Tue Apr 24, 2007 11:01 pm

Isaiah 45:7, "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things." KJV

The Hebrew tenses do pin point meanings of words. For times sake I'll post a better translation using the correct tenses of words to refine the meaning of this passage. It may help clarify your issue. Later if time permits — I will list the tenses [things like Qal form and such so you can check out my translation].

The problem with translating only by using the Strong's Concordance method by using the numbers to match word is that it does not refine the word meaning by usage of parts of speech the Hebrew uses. From this method the Old Hebrew becomes a language of synonyms nothing is easily translated without some serious debate as to whether or not it's a proper translation. However, the parts of speech and tense do define the correct word meanings and these can be correctly translated.

Here is a better translation:

Isaiah 45:7, "I fashion/shape/refine light, by initiating/using darkness: I fashion/shape/refine peace, by initiating/using - evil/calamity: I the LORD do all these things.”

Isaiah 45: 8 is usually ignored when reading verse 7 but these should be read together:

Isaiah 45:8, “Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it.” KJV

Note Bara — the word create -Used in Genesis 1:1 is used in the Qal Perfect which indicates the active voice denoting perfective action which action is to be viewed as the whole act of what word or word phrase mean in this tense. Thus in Genesis 1:1, “God created the heavens and the earth…” means simply that He created the heavens and earth perfectly and in harmony — basically God created the heavens and the earth out of nothing into a state of perfection. Note Genesis 1:31.

Now in Isaiah 45:7 the same word Bara is used note in the Qal Perfect but rather in the WAW Conjunctive / Qal Perfect Active. The WAW is usually translated and, for, by, and so forth as we use English Conjunctives. The Qal Perfect Active denotes a verbal adjective in the active voice indicating one simple action from a word's meaning. Basically these have 'ing' or 'ful' placed at the end of the word.

This refines the definition of 'create' used in Isaiah 45:7:

"I form/fashion the light, and/by creating darkness: I form/shape peace, and/by creating evil: I the LORD do all these things."

The word translated 'form' — yatzar', means to give “form” to previously existing matter, to devise, shape, fashion, frame, initiate, refine. Hence this word points to the correct definition of the word translated 'Create — Bara' as shaping something already there; hence, initiating, producing, using it for a purpose.

The word we translate as 'Create' holds an entire word meaning yet the Qal Perfect Active points to a single active meaning used in create — not its whole; thus, creating — producing, initiating, bringing it to bear and use.

As God forms light He uses darkness to refine and perfect the light. God forms, shapes, refines peace into perfection by usage of evil/calamity.

The Hebrew word translated Peace is the word shâlôm — meaning: perfect wholeness, health, security, peace, perfect completeness, perfect harmony. How?

Well read:

Isaiah 45:8, “Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it.” KJV

Did not Jesus drop down from Heaven so to speak and God fashioned this to be?

Isaiah 65:17-19, “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. 18 But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy. 19 And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying.” KJV

Hebrews12:27-28; 2Peter 3:13; Revelations 21:1

God uses darkness to perfect light — that is the message of Isaiah 45:7.
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Ebil and frre will

#3

Post by madscientist » Thu Apr 26, 2007 12:05 pm

Good questuon Forge... well i suppose if u define FW as the ability to choose from good/evil, it is. so yes, evil IS necessary. if you have nothing to choose from, theres no free will. however, i still kinda believe that in heaven, for example, well have free will - be able to do what we wish, but we will not be able to commit evil since this will be a thing we will not know of - as adam and eve did not know at first. but there was temptation but not real evil yet.
So i also hold the opinion that freee will comprises the choice of good/evil, even if evil is not carried out in practice.
Now another question: Does God have free will? Sure he does. But he wont do evil koz of his perfect nature. He is incapable of doing evil. the question really is if he would be able if he WANTED. looks to me he would since he is all powerful but he'd never make that choice. but does 'never making that choice' mean u got (no) free will? complictaed.
and free will is something philosophians and other ppl struggle with most i think because we're controlled by laws of physics etc and so this seems like an impossible thing, which no1 will be able to explain, i think.
"Love is only possible if a choice of either love or rejecting the love is given." One of the most true things id ever heard, not so long ago.

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Re: Ebil and frre will

#4

Post by B. W. » Fri Apr 27, 2007 5:43 pm

madscientist wrote:Now another question: Does God have free will? Sure he does. But he wont do evil koz of his perfect nature. He is incapable of doing evil. the question really is if he would be able if he WANTED. looks to me he would since he is all powerful but he'd never make that choice. but does 'never making that choice' mean u got (no) free will? complictaed. and free will is something philosophians and other ppl struggle with most i think because we're controlled by laws of physics etc and so this seems like an impossible thing, which no1 will be able to explain, i think.
Here is something to ponder and think about:

The hallmark of being all powerful is self control. Without self control one could not be all powerful.
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Free will can fade off.

#5

Post by Ashley » Fri Apr 27, 2007 11:02 pm

In summary of the above it quite depends on a few variables in considering free will:

(1) the sense of the chooser
(2) the availability of choices for the chooser to exercise his free will
(3) knowledge of such availability
(4) our freshly weakness

In (1), I mean the ability to choose. If the chooser is of unsound mind, a psyche or mentally retarded, he is indifferent no matter how many choices are available.

In (2), suppose the chooser is sensible and reasonable man, he still chooses nothing if there is no population of choices for him to choose. In other words, he knows that such population exists but the choices are not available. For example if our hands are handicapped, how can we steal? but we have free will to steal, because in our mind we direct our desire to steal or not to steal, (we never act it out; we are unable because our hands are handicapped)

In (3), suppose the chooser is sensible and reasonable man, he has free will, BUT population is not instilled into his knowledge; he does not know that such population of choices exist. Interestingly Adam and Eve, before being expelled from Eden, were living in this state of mind, I figure. If none of them ate the fruits of the forbidden trees, none ever knew "there is darkness" and "there is somewhere away from God". They might have remained ignorant forever.

In (4), it is most ethical one. Yes, we have free will because of (2) {there are choices} and because of (3), {we know the choices}, BUT, we can still lose our free will, because we are biased, or addicted to, one particular choice. If we gamble, we follow our own desire to continue to gamble, even though we know the gambling addiction is bad; as time goes by, the knowledge is fading away in our mind, and our addiction wipes off our knowledge of choices, reducing our free will to a sub-conscious one, and we are living as though we have lost our free will. Yes, we are living in scenario (2), choices are available for us to quit, and also in scenario (3), we know the choice; so what? we become blind about the choices as though we are expelled from both scenario (2) and (3). So it comes this scenario, - scenario (4)

In (4), it sounds like that the two laws struggle in Paul's soul in his letter to Roman. Some people give up right away all choices and no struggle takes place in their minds any longer after addiction. Their free will is dead.

Are there any other variables? A wild analysis is presented here.

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Re: Free will can fade off.

#6

Post by B. W. » Sat Apr 28, 2007 10:07 pm

Ashley wrote:In summary of the above it quite depends on a few variables in considering free will:

(1) the sense of the chooser
(2) the availability of choices for the chooser to exercise his free will
(3) knowledge of such availability
(4) our freshly weakness

In (1), I mean the ability to choose. If the chooser is of unsound mind, a psyche or mentally retarded, he is indifferent no matter how many choices are available.

In (2), suppose the chooser is sensible and reasonable man, he still chooses nothing if there is no population of choices for him to choose. In other words, he knows that such population exists but the choices are not available. For example if our hands are handicapped, how can we steal? but we have free will to steal, because in our mind we direct our desire to steal or not to steal, (we never act it out; we are unable because our hands are handicapped)

In (3), suppose the chooser is sensible and reasonable man, he has free will, BUT population is not instilled into his knowledge; he does not know that such population of choices exist. Interestingly Adam and Eve, before being expelled from Eden, were living in this state of mind, I figure. If none of them ate the fruits of the forbidden trees, none ever knew "there is darkness" and "there is somewhere away from God". They might have remained ignorant forever.

In (4), it is most ethical one. Yes, we have free will because of (2) {there are choices} and because of (3), {we know the choices}, BUT, we can still lose our free will, because we are biased, or addicted to, one particular choice. If we gamble, we follow our own desire to continue to gamble, even though we know the gambling addiction is bad; as time goes by, the knowledge is fading away in our mind, and our addiction wipes off our knowledge of choices, reducing our free will to a sub-conscious one, and we are living as though we have lost our free will. Yes, we are living in scenario (2), choices are available for us to quit, and also in scenario (3), we know the choice; so what? we become blind about the choices as though we are expelled from both scenario (2) and (3). So it comes this scenario, - scenario (4)

In (4), it sounds like that the two laws struggle in Paul's soul in his letter to Roman. Some people give up right away all choices and no struggle takes place in their minds any longer after addiction. Their free will is dead.

Are there any other variables? A wild analysis is presented here.

.
These are all great points to ponder!

Here are a few more --

What demonstrates being all powerful, all wise, all knowing, etc and etc — allowing the created to be independent or tied to strings as a puppet? If to strings — how could God truly be all powerful? - But to remain in control even when the created are independent would prove being all-powerful as reality as well as all powerfully afraid on nothing.

If independent, then, the created can respond to His word as God calls out to each. One hearing can either accept His Word or reject it entirely. Sin remains the created(s) own. God remains in control, afraid of nothing, knowing all things before anything ever was and guiding all things toward His final goal.
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Why and What.

#7

Post by Ashley » Sun Apr 29, 2007 12:51 am

B.W.

A groovy reply you post onto here. Yes it's not improbable it is God's will to let us have free will to see His glory and almighty overwhelming existence, above anything else.

I was trying to answer the question: what is free will? (It was what Forge was asking, wasn't it?) I tried to shape what it is. Not a serious effort and it is somewhat playful.

And I trust that, different from I, you were answering the question: why is there free will?

I can tell your answer to the question is more important to note, to know Him better.


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Re: Why and What.

#8

Post by B. W. » Sun Apr 29, 2007 7:18 am

Ashley wrote:B.W.

A groovy reply you post onto here. Yes it's not improbable it is God's will to let us have free will to see His glory and almighty overwhelming existence, above anything else. I was trying to answer the question: what is free will? (It was what Forge was asking, wasn't it?) I tried to shape what it is. Not a serious effort and it is somewhat playful. And I trust that, different from I, you were answering the question: why is there free will? I can tell your answer to the question is more important to note, to know Him better..
Yes, and my answer was written in a playful note too :)

And more to ponder:

Why God would create beings with free will would be best discovered by looking at who God is. Since God is who He is, how could He not create beings with free will?

Therefore what is “free will?”

Free Will: It is simply the ability to think and reason independently, the ability to be creative and inventive, the ability to take care and nurture, the ability to exercise governorship and dominion, the ability to 'name' and 'categorize' things, the ability to know when to plant and harvest various things both physical and mental, and the ability to reflect God's image and likeness to creation [which is a great mystery]. Note Genesis 1:26-31.

Basically it is the means used to aid in keeping life alive, fruitful and good; however, due to the fall of humanity, things twisted toward sin and humanity no longer governed according to the Lord's image and likeness but rather in humanities own. Think about it…
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Re: Why and What.

#9

Post by madscientist » Sat May 05, 2007 5:22 am

B. W. wrote:
Why God would create beings with free will would be best discovered by looking at who God is. Since God is who He is, how could He not create beings with free will?

Therefore what is “free will?”

Free Will: It is simply the ability to think and reason independently, the ability to be creative and inventive, the ability to take care and nurture, the ability to exercise governorship and dominion, the ability to ‘name’ and 'categorize' things, the ability to know when to plant and harvest various things both physical and mental, and the ability to reflect God’s image and likeness to creation [which is a great mystery]. Note Genesis 1:26-31.

Basically it is the means used to aid in keeping life alive, fruitful and good; however, due to the fall of humanity, things twisted toward sin and humanity no longer governed according to the Lord’s image and likeness but rather in humanities own. Think about it…
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Hmm nice definition of free will, BW! But apparently us, when in heaven, wont have free will. and free will was somethibg adam and eve had already in the beginning. SO will or will we not lose fw when in heaven?
For me, in my opinion, it means "the ability to freely [with some limitations, though, depending on environment, possibility, nature/nurture, laws of physics, previous experience, abilities, and maybe randomness (e.g. thoughts - random: I may get a crazy thought and do it)] choose from many possibilities, but mainly the decision whether to ACCEPT or REFUSE God". I see this earthly choice as "a sacrifice of this earthly life, e.g. overcoming temptations so that a greater glory will be in heaven, FOREVER" - a short-time vs. long-time fight. You either decide to fall into temptation, and have this 60-70 yr, or shorter or longer, life, for ypurself and with all the pleasures, and then suffer, or have struggling and working hard to overcome temptation - the sacrifice of this earthly life for a better ETERNAL life. Thats how i explain it - basically, you go for short-ter pleasure, or you sacrifice this life and gain a good one. Because overcoming temptation is something hard, and falling is ALWAYS the easier choice. God made it so - temptation is something that needed to be created, because, if not, wouldnt everyone end up in heaven? The thing is, that even if you know consciously that you are doing evil, you may stiill say "ya but at least i get some fun here..." and similar thoughts.... and not care about the eternal. But if it were easier to do good than evil, no1 would need to overcome temptation, because temptation is somehing we want but it rather impure or evil in nature. SO in my opinion, God had to make temptation and our instinct to go for it, but our FREE WILL to have the ability to say "No, i dont want to just follow my insticnts, but rather to overcome them". Because humans without free will are like animals, just following insticnts for pleasure and needs... :P

Does this analogy seem all right? (I kinda thought of it and this is what i came up with...) Koz this has always bothered me, and thats how i came to explain wht temptation exists and why we are all so much atracted to oit... 8)
"Love is only possible if a choice of either love or rejecting the love is given." One of the most true things id ever heard, not so long ago.

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Re: Why and What.

#10

Post by B. W. » Sat May 05, 2007 8:23 am

madscientist wrote:Hmm nice definition of free will, BW! But apparently us, when in heaven, wont have free will. and free will was somethibg adam and eve had already in the beginning. SO will or will we not lose fw when in heaven?For me, in my opinion, it means "the ability to freely [with some limitations, though, depending on environment, possibility, nature/nurture, laws of physics, previous experience, abilities, and maybe randomness (e.g. thoughts - random: I may get a crazy thought and do it)] choose from many possibilities, but mainly the decision whether to ACCEPT or REFUSE God". I see this earthly choice as "a sacrifice of this earthly life, e.g. overcoming temptations so that a greater glory will be in heaven, FOREVER" - a short-time vs. long-time fight. You either decide to fall into temptation, and have this 60-70 yr, or shorter or longer, life, for ypurself and with all the pleasures, and then suffer, or have struggling and working hard to overcome temptation - the sacrifice of this earthly life for a better ETERNAL life. Thats how i explain it - basically, you go for short-ter pleasure, or you sacrifice this life and gain a good one. Because overcoming temptation is something hard, and falling is ALWAYS the easier choice. God made it so - temptation is something that needed to be created, because, if not, wouldnt everyone end up in heaven? The thing is, that even if you know consciously that you are doing evil, you may stiill say "ya but at least i get some fun here..." and similar thoughts.... and not care about the eternal. But if it were easier to do good than evil, no1 would need to overcome temptation, because temptation is somehing we want but it rather impure or evil in nature. SO in my opinion, God had to make temptation and our instinct to go for it, but our FREE WILL to have the ability to say "No, i dont want to just follow my insticnts, but rather to overcome them". Because humans without free will are like animals, just following insticnts for pleasure and needs... :P

Does this analogy seem all right? (I kinda thought of it and this is what i came up with...) Koz this has always bothered me, and thats how i came to explain wht temptation exists and why we are all so much atracted to oit... 8)
Here is what James says about temptation…

James 1:2-26, "My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

9 Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, 10 but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away. 11 For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.

12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. 18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of His creatures.

19 So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; 20 for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.

21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does. 26 If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one's religion is useless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world
." NKJV

As for Free Will...

There will be free will of sorts in heaven; however, not of the kind you and I think of and relate to by the standards of our common mortal sojourn. This autonomy will be created in righteousness and true holiness and therefore never to rebel again, sealed by the blood of Christ. Look up the following scriptures and see what they speak to you on this matter.

Romans 8

2 Corinthians 5:17-21

Eph 4:24, “…and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” KJV

2 Co 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new…” KVJ

Col 3:10, “And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:” KJV
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temptation free wil etc

#11

Post by madscientist » Sat May 05, 2007 12:31 pm

That is, basically, that temptatuons are not from God, that we fall into them etc. But since God is the One who created us in his own image, and made things the way they are - our brains, e.g. that we are attracted to this and this, that we like these thigns and hate otehrs, and have free will etc - isnt this the same for everyone? Everyone, to an extent, has the same temptations - sins. it's always easier to be angry, kill, not care about anyine, do harm, rejoice at other's suffering, and once somebody decides to take this path of life, he has chosen very unwisely. but if some1 chooses the other way towatds roghetoisueness, then he's done good choice.
If temptation doesnt come from God (just like evil doesnt), but God is the One who made things as they are, isnt He the one who made the absolute "rule" of what is and what isnt temptation? It does not come from him - but he allows it, like evil.

And about the theory of temptation i had in my previos post... does it look okay to explain it? I mean, there are many unexplainavle things, and ppl just make stuff to explain soemthing, an analogy or soemthibg - an like 1 month ago i had this idea. So does it look OK as a way to explain why we are tempted, and what free will requires us to do and why we're difeerent from aninals?
"Love is only possible if a choice of either love or rejecting the love is given." One of the most true things id ever heard, not so long ago.

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Re: temptation free wil etc

#12

Post by B. W. » Sun May 06, 2007 11:31 pm

madscientist wrote: If temptation doesn't come from God (just like evil doesn't), but God is the One who made things as they are, isn't He the one who made the absolute "rule" of what is and what isn't temptation? It does not come from him - but he allows it, like evil.

And about the theory of temptation I had in my previous post... does it look okay to explain it? I mean, there are many unexplainable things, and ppl just make stuff to explain something, an analogy or something - an like 1 month ago I had this idea. So does it look OK as a way to explain why we are tempted, and what free will requires us to do and why we're different from animals?
If I am understanding you correctly from your prior post you stated -
madscientist wrote: God made it so - temptation is something that needed to be created, because, if not, wouldn't everyone end up in heaven? The thing is, that even if you know consciously that you are doing evil, you may still say "ya but at least i get some fun here..." and similar thoughts.... and not care about the eternal. But if it were easier to do good than evil, no1 would need to overcome temptation, because temptation is something we want but it rather impure or evil in nature. SO in my opinion, God had to make temptation and our instinct to go for it, but our FREE WILL to have the ability to say "No, i don't want to just follow my instincts, but rather to overcome them". Because humans without free will are like animals, just following instincts for pleasure and needs.
Then yes, what you are saying makes sense regarding God allowing and permitting temptation and evil, to exist within his created beings designed with reasoning intelligence. Note what Ezekiel 28:15 says:

Ezekiel 28:14-15, “Thou wast the far-covering cherub; and I set thee, so that thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of stones of fire. 15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till unrighteousness [iniquity] was found in thee.” JPS

Here are three different translations from Ecclesiastes 7:29 that helps uncover more on this subject:

Ecc 7:29, “I did learn one thing: We were completely honest when God created us, but now we have twisted minds.” CEV

Ecc 7:29, “This is all that I have learned: God made us plain and simple, but we have made ourselves very complicated.” GNB

Ecc 7:29, “Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.” KJV

Question as to why this design — why God made humanity and the angels in such a manner as to permit 'free will' as you so termed.

The answer is found in a clue from a verse found in Revelations 4:11. Here are two translations:

Revelations 4:11, "You are worthy, our Lord and God, the Holy [One], to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because _You_ created [all] the [things], and because of Your will they are [fig., exist] and were created!" ALT

Revelations 4:11, "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created." KJV

For God's pleasure, his will, is to receive glory and honor and power from what he created. In others words, God proves himself as having all power, all honor, all glory. To deny the exercise of free will would in essence be a denial of having him having all power and using it all knowingly, all wisely, all lovingly, all righteously, all perfectly, all justly, etc and etc.

All power means just that — all powerful. To control free minded beings by allowing and permitting choices proves God is all powerful and is more than able to control all things in such manner that displays a 'wisdom' and 'ethic' way beyond what our mortal minds can fully comprehend.

Never define how God controls things as how we would. When we think of control we define it according to our standards and definitions of control and transpose this unto God. You cannot do this with how God controls simply because God's ways are not our ways, Isaiah 55:8, as to do so leads to a great error about the Lord Almighty.

Now, for God to deny all things, including free will, is not being in reality all powerful is it? You see, God gets renown/Glory demonstrating that he is God, all knowing, all wise, all powerful, all loving, all righteous, all perfect, all just, etc and etc. Working through all things, all circumstances, because he can — He proves himself true first to himself and then to his entire creation — which is life giving .

God created all things to demonstrate who and what he is and is like. Here is how Albert Barnes explains it in his Notes on the Bible for this very verse regarding the phrase — and for thy pleasure:

And for thy pleasure they are - They exist by thy will - διὰ τὸ θέλημά dia to thelēma. The meaning is, that they owe their existence to the will of God, and therefore their creation lays the foundation for praise. He “spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.” He said, “Let there be light; and there was light.” There is no other reason why the universe exists at all than that such was the will of God; there is nothing else that is to be adduced as explaining the fact that anything has now a being. The putting forth of that will explains all; and, consequently, whatever wisdom, power, goodness, is manifested in the universe, is to be traced to God, and is the expression of what was in him from eternity. It is proper, then, to “look up through nature to nature's God,” and wherever we see greatness or goodness in the works of creation, to regard them as the faint expression of what exists essentially in the Creator.”

Hope this helps…

God Bless
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#13

Post by puritan lad » Mon May 07, 2007 5:42 am

madscientist,

Once we understand that all things exists for the Glory of God, everything falls into place, including evil.
"To suppose that whatever God requireth of us that we have power of ourselves to do, is to make the cross and grace of Jesus Christ of none effect." - JOHN OWEN

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Things for Glory

#14

Post by madscientist » Mon May 07, 2007 11:19 am

puritan lad wrote:madscientist,

Once we understand that all things exists for the Glory of God, everything falls into place, including evil.
Nicely said, PL!! That is probably what God wishes, and things are for his glory, indeed. But this thing about pleasure etc... - may be off topic, but... Pleasure and glory is not something God needs, right? It says somewhere in Bible that God diesnt need antything. Its for pleasure, sort of an extra stuff, like our lives - we live and aim for pleasure. But since God's life and time is absolute and non-changing, and He can experience all things in no-time - or, simply, indifferently to our time scale, does it make a difference whether these things are taking place right now, have already happened or will happen? And is God's Will soemthing absolute, meaning it simply is, and COULD NOT possibly have been different, had he wished? (Crazy question, I know!!)(And, why am i interested in such stuff? Koz God wanted me to, probably!!! :lol: :) !!) So does it make a difference whether the things are REAL or IMAGINARY or just in God's imagination, or have to be real and we ourselves have to experience them? And doesn't God's Will, feeling (like pleasure, suffering, happiness, joy, sadness) etc remain constant all the time? Because he already knows what we do, so he doesnt experience sadness when we sin, and joy when we do good... or does He??!! If anyone can answer that,... he's really filled with Spirit of God! :wink: :)
"Love is only possible if a choice of either love or rejecting the love is given." One of the most true things id ever heard, not so long ago.

-MMS-

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