TED Conversations

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

If God is omniscient is free will an illusion?

I'm agnostic but interested in the truth so I do a lot of thinking and research on philosophy and religious issues in order to keep an open mind. It occurred to me when I was thinking one day that if God exists and he already knows everything I'm ever going to do then every decision I'm ever going to make has effectively already been made. This would mean that there is no such thing as free will. Since free will is a necessary ingredient for sin to be meaningful this has some pretty astounding implications. Thoughts?

Topics: religion
0
Share:

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Feb 1 2013: I believe I can choose to eat a sandwich for lunch. I don't think God made me choose it, but He knew I would. Analogies are the best we can do when we talk about the temporal in terms of the spiritual or the spriritual in terms of the temporal. So, free will becomes a human construct to explain an unexplainable thing. In daily life, I have free will. In the eternity of God, I don't.
    • Feb 1 2013: I don't think that you are necessarily facing the question if you must invoke a spiritual reality in order to side step it. If we are to have a consistent temporal reality then it must stand on its own. Maybe if you explained in more detail. Thanks for the comment though.
      • thumb
        Feb 4 2013: Perception, to a certain extent, is about choice. Religion tangles up my perception in this case. I like to think free will exists as an aspect of being human. If God is omniscient, though, then He knows everything I will ever think, say, or do, which makes me think there is no free will, at least on God's scale of existence. Free will becomes a matter of my perception and, therefore, choice rather an absolute truth or falsity.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.