Predestination, Part 1
A reader takes issue with my comment that God does not know all things and believes that scripture says otherwise.
I would challenge readers to give me even one scripture that tells us that God knows every detail that will happen in the future.
There is none.
Such a belief is founded upon the “tradition of the Fathers.”
Concerning your thoughts that there is no free will… I find that kind of a depressing belief, similar to a belief that there is no afterlife.
I threw out the challenge that there is nothing in the scriptures to indicate that God knows all things that will happen in the future. Of course, many of the higher lives understand the principle of cycles and have some knowledge of the Plan. They can therefore see through the eyes of God and see certain definite events that will unfold, but all the details in between the various stages are not seen nor does anyone even want to see them.
Why would God, a million years ago, even want to know which number it is I am now picking which is between one and a hundred? If for no other reason, God does not know every future event because it would bore him to death to discover all the useless data.
I read through the list of scriptures given and none of them indicate that God knows all future events. A reader points out that Jesus knew that Judas would betray him. That is only one thing, not billions of things. He also points out that God knew us before we were born. All of us have lived many incarnations and all of us knew quite a few things before our current birth, even some future things, but that does not mean we know all things.
In truth many things attributed to God originated from fear. Fear of what?
Fear of offending God.
If the choice is between stating that God knows all things that can ever be or he does not know the believer will play it safe and state that God knows all things. If one errors it’s better to error on the side of praise. This is the way subjects behave around a tyrant. If the choice comes between giving the one with power over life and death a positive attribute or not the subject will always tell the tyrant he is as great and good as possible just to play it safe.
Now lets us examine the subject using the Law of Correspondences. We are made in the image of God. In other words, we are reflections of God. Just as the physical body of God is the universe (“the elements are the tabernacle of God”) even so, is our physical body a universe that we preside over.
As a God over our universe do we know all things happening or that will happen in our body? Are we aware of what every single atom is doing?
Do we want to be?
Could we be if we desired?
Yes. If you wanted to single out one atom and discover it this could be done once the principle is mastered.
The point is that we tune into our body as a whole and use the body as a whole. The smaller parts of the body are taken care of by lesser Intelligences that circulate within it and build and renew form.
If it were possible that God were to know everything that will materialize through our decisions, or every decision that we will ever make, then that reduces us to no more than walking computers that are programmed to perform as expected. Why in the world would God give commandments to a computer program when he wrote the program? Why would he be angry that the computer program does not obey when he already knew this would happen? God should be happy at our disobedience if that was foreknown because all is going according to plan.
Why would God even want to continue to exist when there is nothing new to discover or to know?
Many are afraid to consider these thoughts because of the fear of offending God, but in truth the only way to get the attention of the Great Ones is to overcome the fear and question everything – even the orthodox attributes and descriptions of God.
I threw out a challenge to show me in the scriptures any evidence that God knows all things that will happen in the future.
This is an interesting challenge because almost every church of every religion teaches that God knows every possible thing. But if the doctrine is not in their scriptures the question arises – where did this philosophy come from? The answer is obvious. Some well meaning teacher conjured up the idea and it caught on and became a traditional belief – one of those many beliefs believers think is in the scriptures but is not.
A reader says these LDS scriptures contradict me.
D&C 93:24 And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come; D&C 93:28 He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light, until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things. D&C 93:26 The Spirit of truth is of God. I (Christ) am the Spirit of truth, and John bore record of me, saying: He received a fulness of truth, yea, even of all truth.
Notice the key scripture here in verse 28 refers to disciples and not God. Exactly what does it mean when it says that a disciple can know all things? Does this mean every little detail that will ever be? Does this mean that he will have an infallible knowledge of the future? Obviously not, for if it did then there should be some example for us and there is none. In fact there has not been one person on the earth who has been able to demonstrate the simple gift of prophesy of detail to the extent of predicting winning lottery numbers. Think of all the good a person could do with the money if one could see future lottery numbers, winning horse races or roulette wheel winning numbers. Or, if he doesn’t want to gamble he could pick winning stocks, make lots of money and give it to the poor or some other good cause.
Even better such a person could warn us of something like 911 or even smaller catastrophes such as the fire that killed a hundred people recently.
I submit that “knowing all things” refers to the principles behind knowledge rather than data itself.
A principle is true yesterday, today and forever, but knowledge (as data) changes by the hour (the temperature for example). The language of the Holy Spirit is composed of principles, not data. To know all things in the language of the spirit is to know all principles.
Reader comment: First, just because you, or I, or God may know for virtual certainty the outcome of an event, does NOT mean the person or persons involved do not have their agency (freedom to choose). Put another way, it does NOT mean they are “reduced to no more than walking computers.”
JJ: Let me rephrase that. “Just because you, or I, or God may correctly guess the outcome of an event, does NOT mean the person or persons involved do not have their agency (freedom to choose).”
If you are predicting an outcome where decision is involved then you are making a guess. There are many future events where the decision has already been made. For instance, there is no decision to be made as to whether or not I will get out of bed in the morning. It is predictable that I will arise because the decision to do so is programmed in me.
On the other hand, if I pick a number between one and 100 I have to make a decision as to which number I am going to pick. The number will be different each time and no one can predict it.
Reader Comment: Many a time have I known exactly the course some of my children would take, in certain situations. That knowledge (however obtained) did not keep them from making their own decisions.
JJ I would guess that in most cases you knew what they would do because their actions were founded on decisions already incorporated into their make-up. But how about something that is not dependent on past tendencies – like picking a number between one and 100? No matter how well you know your kid you will not be able to predict this much better than one time out of a hundred.
The only way a parent could know everything his kid will choose is to have all decisions programmed in him in advance like a computer program. If all decisions are pre-programmed then there could be no free will.
“But” says one. “If God or I did know everything you would do in advance – that would not take away your free will.”
If this were possible then you are correct, but such a knowing is not possible. In fact no one has even come close to demonstrating that it is possible.
Why is the predicting of future decision with 100% accuracy impossible?
Because of the nature of decision itself. In making a decision you have at least two choices before you and even you often do not know what the choice will be. If you already know what the choice will be then there is no decision to be made. A decision is only possible when there is an uncertainty. For instance, I do not have to make a decision about getting up in the morning because there is no uncertainly around the action. On the other hand, I do have to decide some of the things I will do tomorrow because at the present time I do not know all I will do.
If I, living in my own consciousness, do not know if I will decide to go to the movies tomorrow then how will you know? If I do not know which number between one and a hundred I will pick the next time I am called to do so then how will you or God know? If I do not have a clue as to how many steps I will walk tomorrow then how can anyone else know – or for that matter who would want to know? If God even wants to clutter his mind with some of these details he is a strange God indeed – a nerd God perhaps?
As long as we as humans have a sphere of decision making then there are always details that cannot be known in advance because of the principle of uncertainty which underlies all decision.
On the other hand, if you or God make a definite decision as to the materialization of a future creation, which is within your power, then that future thing can be predicted. But even here the details in between which is worked out by decision based on uncertainty is not predicable.
Feb 18, 2003
Copyright By J J Dewey
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