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The doctrine of middle knowledge is a philosophical argument.

Yes, but isn't it telling that we need "philosophical arguments" to mutilate or invert the meaning of any plainly written verse that doesn't fit your preconceptions.

 

The philosophy comes into play because we have other verses that tell us we have free will also. Reasoning about scripture is fine in the eyes of God.

 

Isa 1:18

"Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, ...

But that's not the Christian God.

 

The Christian God is this:

 

"Come now, let me tell you what you need to do to avoid my wrath."

"If you want to engage in reasoning, make sure you reach the proper conclusion....or else."

Circumstances of choice do not remove a choice.

 

The Christian God is NOT the God of the Old Testament.

 

Act 3:13

"The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him.

 

The New Testament is a compilation of books that seek to establish their own authenticity and authority by claiming / asserting within themselves that they possess these things.

 

Circular argumentation is never valid, Clay. You should refrain from it.

 

BAA.

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I want to thank OrdianryClay for demonstrating why talking to Christians about religion is a complete waste of time. Never bother in real life. Christians always try to pull the same dishonest trick

This is exactly why conversations like this are pointless. One side uses historical and scientific fact, observation of the real world, and logic. The other accepts only information that conforms to w

I'm done making threads like this, I have no interest in having discussions with "christians" anymore. You all have your heads so far up your asses that it's literally a waste of my time.

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To Ordinary Clay, Living Life, Centauri, Bornagainathiest, and everyone else who's interested:

 

I submit that the argument for Molinism (yes, time travel back to our discussion of April) is vitiated by an equivocation fallacy.

 

First, to recap: Molinism holds both that God is First Cause and that humans make decisions by free will. (see previous parts of thread for fuller exposition of this). The question matters as part of our bigger discussion of the Problem of Evil. Molinists like William Lane Craig and Ordinary Clay claim to have solved the problem of evil by showing that evil is the result of freely willed choices by creatures AND showing that God remains omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent, and that God's grace does its job. “Freely” means “not determined by causes other than the agent’s will;" the agent is able to choose P or not-P.

 

So the issue matters for lots of us on here, whether we're believers or not.

 

Molinism makes a distinction among God's types of knowledge. To explain how decisions of creatures are free, Molinism posits that God foreknows by "middle knowledge" all possible worlds. Therefore He foreknows all the decisions that, say, Ruth will make in all possible worlds. Let's say He foreknows that Ruth will choose to believe in Christ in a world in which conditions x, y and z are actualized. God then creates a world in which x, y and z are actualized. The same holds in the case of all decisions of all free-willed creatures. The bundle gives us the actualized or "factual" world. If God had chosen to create one of the other worlds, in which different conditions would be actualized, then in some of these counterfactual worlds, Ruth would believe (i.e. x, y and z would be actualized in those worlds, too), and in others, she would not (in them at least x, y or z would not be actualized).

 

Here's why I think there is an equivocation on the term "Ruth" in this line of argument.

 

God's middle knowledge knows all the possible decisions of Ruth, including the one God likes, and God creates a world in which that one will be actualized. So by His middle knowledge He knows lots of counterfactual Ruths and the one actual Ruth whom He creates. By His free knowledge He knows the actual Ruth as actual. God knows by Middle Knowledge that she will choose P under conditions x, y and z. God wants Ruth to choose P. God therefore creates a world in which x, y and z are actualized, so that it’s guaranteed that Ruth will choose P.

 

But the actual Ruth is not identical to any of the counterfactual Ruths because not all that is true of the actual Ruth is true of them (and vice versa). So when the Molinist says, "God knows all the decisions Ruth would make in all possible worlds and chooses to create the world in which Ruth will make the choice he wants," the first "Ruth" in this sentence is not identical to the "Ruths" in the counterfactual worlds. There's an equivocation on "Ruth" lurking in here. The Molinist argument treats "Ruth", the inhabitant of the actual world, as a term that can be mutually substituted for "Ruth" the inhabitant of counterfactual worlds. One may grant Wm. Lane Craig that God can have knowledge of counterfactuals, but that’s not the issue. Not all that is true of Ruth the inhabitant of the actual world is true of Ruth the inhabitant of some counterfactual world. Therefore there is a vicious equivocation upon Ruth; the argument surreptitiously exploits a jump from the counterfactual Ruth to a conclusion about the factual Ruth. It is not legitimate to consider what "Ruth" would have decided in some counterfactual universe and compare that to what she decides in the actual universe, because there would be no "Ruth" in that universe, only someone else whose life narrative would make "her" a different person; there is no "she", identical in both parts of the argument, that supports inferences about one from conclusions that involve references to the other. Put another way, there is a missing middle term in the argument, and its absence is masked by the equivocation on "person" or "Ruth."

 

Afterthought: the Molinist might want to formulate the God's Middle Knowledge argument so as to avoid inferences about an actual person's decisions from premises that involve reference to the person's decisions in counterfactual worlds. But this won't work, because Molinism trades precisely on a distinction between the knowledge by which God knows all possible worlds, and thus, all a person's possible decisions, and the knowledge by which God knows the world He actually brings into existence. There is no Molinism anymore if you don't appeal to counterfactual "Ruths," but if you do, you equivocate when you draw conclusions about the actual Ruth.

 

You are engaging in an equivocation of the notion of identity. You use an undfined idea of being different people based on having made choices. You are not an actually different person just because you chose to make your post. You are the same person who happened to have made a choice. Following your reasoning we end up with absurdities involving responsibility. If we are different people after each choice then our justice system has no right prosecuting anyone because the person who committed the crime no longer "exists". Absurd.

 

I put this argument out here hoping to receive criticism, so thank you for yours. From what I've read in the literature so far, it's clear that there are a number of takes on Molinism even among its proponents, and the arguments are very slippery (I think partly because of floating variables like "omniscience," as I said a while back). So I have more thinking to do.

 

So far I see no equivocation on "identity" in what I wrote. Where do I use that term in a sense different from the sense that I impart to it in another part of my argument?

 

You do not seem to have read what I wrote carefully, OC - or of course I could just be missing things. Where did I say that the actual Ruth becomes a different person after an actual choice that she makes? Your forensic analogy imputes that position to me, and it is not mine.

 

My point focuses rather on the ontological constituents of worlds. Molinism trades on the notion that God by middle knowledge knows all possible worlds and knows all freely willed actions that someone will perform / choices that someone will make in each of those possible worlds. Then He actualizes one of those possible worlds. The standard notion of "person" entails a world in which that person is, as it were, embedded, or of which it is a constituent. The "Ruths" as inhabitants of possible worlds are not identical to each other because "Ruth" is under a different description in each possible world. A comparison might be made to the actual world vs. the worlds of historical fiction. Julius Caesar the actual personage is not identical to the Julius Caesar the literary character because one belonged to the "actual" universe and the other belongs to a fictional, i.e. possible, universe, and each "Caesar" is under a significantly different description. That analogy may help to explain my point that the actual Ruth is not identical to bundles of possibilities in other possible worlds. If "she" is so treated, one of two things must go on, as I see it. 1) the argument is moving from a context-free Ruth, who is a construct not a person but nevertheless wills freely, to a context-embedded Ruth, a complete person--thus equivocating. Or, 2) the difference between the actual world and counterfactual worlds disappears.

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Guest Valk0010

Ohh to be clearer(since I was exhausted last night). My only point about the molinism actually making the problem of evil worse is that if you apply molinism fully(as you would need to do to beat the omniscience leads to no free will arguement) you turn god into the creator of evil. You give advocates of the problem evil the field. You lead yourself into one part of the Epicurian problem of evil (the only one I personally use if you wanna know). The conclusion then would have to be, god is not omni benevolent. Of course you could probably potentially force yourself to believe in a non omnibenevolent christian god, but his moral proclamations mean nothing if he is evil. It turns the situation back into something akin to this, which I found on the wiki iron chariots site forever ago.

 

Kalam Cosmological Problem of Evil

  1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause.
     
  2. The Evil began to exist.
     
  3. Therefore, Evil must have a cause.

We know that evil is an abstraction, and for it to exist it must be cognized. Either God is the cause of this cognition (part of his nature is not good) or God is not the cause of this cognition (two opposing forces of good and evil exist -Zoroastrianism) In Christianity, God knows all things. By virtue of this fact God is the creator of evil and the source of immorality.

If premise 2 is wrong, then Evil must have existed from the beginning

  1. Everything that did not begin to exist has no cause
     
  2. The Evil did not begin to exist.
     
  3. Therefore, Evil does not have a cause.

Therefore if God exists either:

  1. He is the source of evil and therefore not omnibenevolent,
     
  2. He has an equally powerful rival power
     
  3. He is not omnipotent.

Given that God is supposedly flawless in every way, whatever amount of evil exists in the universe now, it is greater than the pre-creation amount of 0.00%. It is impossible to escape the fact that God's decision to create the universe increased the amount of evil in existence. Theists may fall back to the possibility that God did not know evil would be produced as a result of his creation, however this would mean he was not omniscient. In any case, the traditional "omnimax" god of Christianity has been disproven successfully.

http://wiki.ironchar...Problem_of_Evil

 

And if you must know why I am not a expert in middle knowledge. I actually think it works for the arguement that from what I understand it was originally designed or at least it most easily addresses. That in which, omniscience makes free will impossible. Molinism makes that argument moot.

 

And of course one could potentially say, molinism only exists for good outcomes, but that ain't what molinism is. I don't need to read craig to know that one.

 

Now the only way I can think of that one could use molinism as a way get god off the hook(and its the way that you seem to be trying to use it), is something that actually interestingly played with in the Saw horror movies. Now who was responsible in those movies? It was Jigsaw, not the people who he forced to do the tests. To follow the movie analogy, if jigsaw was god, and molinism actually worked in the way you wanted it, the people in that movie who would have been in the tests themselves would have been morally responsible for the suffering and evil caused not jigsaw. We of course, in earthly circumstances know that kind of conclusion is absurd. The puppetmaster is responsible in those kinds of suitations. Now how, does that make god any different then Jigsaw and the saw senario? He creates the suitation in which we will cause suffering to each other. Evil and suffering under your use of molinism to escape the problem of evil, force god to become jigsaw and us the people in the tests. And as we know, if it was a totally earthly suitation, we would blame jigsaw. But you want us to let god off the hook when he does the exact same thing?

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Hi Valk, my take so far is the opposite of yours, i.e. that Molinism tries to solve the POE by weakening God's omnipotence. It does that by making

creatures, not God, the ones who determine the truth of "counterfactuals of freedom". That's a Molinist term for propositions about what free agents would do in hypothetical circumstances, which are the objects of God’s middle knowledge. The extent to which God can actualize his will in Molinism is limited by creatures, and God's creative act in actualizing the world is not totally under God’s control, since He is constrained by human free choices. Only if God retains ultimate control over human freedom can the orthodox conception of His providence and sovereignty stand, in my opinion. That's why Centauri and I were trying to show OC that Molinism is not scriptural. This is a different problem from the question whether the argument for Molinism is valid.

 

On the other hand, I agree with you that God is still on the hook for "going along with" human free choices to the extend of actualizing a world in which He subjects some creatures to eternal torment as well as to temporal horrors.

 

Anyway we await OC's responses.

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Guest Valk0010

Hi Valk, my take so far is the opposite of yours, i.e. that Molinism tries to solve the POE by weakening God's omnipotence. It does that by making

creatures, not God, the ones who determine the truth of "counterfactuals of freedom". That's a Molinist term for propositions about what free agents would do in hypothetical circumstances, which are the objects of God’s middle knowledge. The extent to which God can actualize his will in Molinism is limited by creatures, and God's creative act in actualizing the world is not totally under God’s control, since He is constrained by human free choices. Only if God retains ultimate control over human freedom can the orthodox conception of His providence and sovereignty stand, in my opinion. That's why Centauri and I were trying to show OC that Molinism is not scriptural. This is a different problem from the question whether the argument for Molinism is valid.

 

 

I am trying to argue this, as okay, lets assume molinism is correct(I honestly don't feel I have to stake my bets either way). And from that, I say it doesn't do anything other then grant part of the conclusion of the problem of evil, that god can't be anything other then evil.

 

I say that because, A: There is no scriptual basis I am aware of, that says god had to create us at all(in fact it doesn't even work logically to say a perfect being needs something), and B: Sure potentially omnipotence can be limited.

 

I say B for the sake of arguement. Sure it may make god's omnipotence weaker, but that has no real relevance on his benevolence. If he is omnibenevolent or even just more benevolent then anybody else in the universe and is its not exactly omnipotent in the classical sense, he could have just simply not created us. If fact that seems like the most logical conclusion, if he wasn't all powerful. He just wouldn't have created us if he was omnibenevolent or at least the most benevolent thing in all the universe. In he is not perfect there is no reason to call him god, either(but that is a different arguement).

 

Here is where I was trying to go with the Saw analogy. He created us to be in a situation that we didn't have to be in, therefore he is responsible. A molinist analysis of the problem of evil, if I am correct, turns god into a maltheistic god and one that isn't christian. Its a really simple kind of idea. The creator of frankenstein is responsible for the actions of frankenstein if he is knowingly creating a evil frankenstein. If he doesn't know, he should invariable have a clue about what could happen and is responsible still due to taking the risk, which he didn't have to take.

 

And if god couldn't do anything but create that knowingly evil Frankenstein, then he is totally impotent and doesn't have the right do to anything.

 

And if he didn't know those bad things were going to happen, there is no reason to call him anything other then a retard that is a rotten human being.

 

ETA:I just fixed up some major errors in what I wrote to make it easier to understand.

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Furthermore, Lazarus and others were resurrected from the dead, so they died more than once, which contradicts Heb 9:27.

Show from the text of John that Lazarus faced God for his judgment before he was awakened by Jesus to live again in his body.

 

Heb 9:27 is telling us about our limitations not God's. We can not choose when to repent. It is not at our will to make a choice after death. God is sovereign and can choose to do as He pleases. He chose to raise Lazarus from the dead. In 1Co 15:51 these Saints will also not experience physical death at His discretion.

 

 

1Co 15:51

Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed,

 

Re: your comment above--

 

According to Molinism, God is not sovereign and cannot choose to do as He pleases, no? God's will acc. to Molinism does not extend to counterfactuals of free choice, although perhaps the Molinist can say that God is pleased with this limitation on His will.

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:sing:

 

I am a guy some love to hate.

And I love being hated by them.

 

I swear I will repent.

 

I am a guy some hate to love.

And I hate being loved by them.

 

I swear

Oh I swear I will repent.

 

And though I've been rejected

by heaven and by hell.

 

I swear I will repent.

 

mmmm hmmmmm

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Okay so god creates a world in such a way as to know what someone would choose before he/she chooses it. Its how god can be omniscient and people have free will correct? And evil is apart of free will and is done by free choice. Correct?

 

I don't see how that changes the problem of evil. There is nothing in the bible as far as I understand it that said god had no choice but to create us. If he had a choice in creating us, and had no choice but to create a world with suffering in it. Then by any logical standard, if he is omni benevolent, then he shouldn't have created us in the first place.

 

If anything this idea of god creating a world where he knows the future but we have free choice if anything makes the problem of evil more of a issue. If X is bad, but A, B, C are good, then he could create a world were we only freely choose between A,B, C. Its the only way one could have free will in heaven. He can put choices in our way to make us do what he wants anyway, that is omnipotence. Why not take away evil then? Just because you can't do something, doesn't mean your free will is violated, it just means there is something you can't do.

 

It sort of leads one to a suitation of did god create evil.

 

If one were to use the middle knowledge idea against the problem of evil, one would have to say god is the creator of evil, because he picked the details to make us choose things.

 

To use a hypothetical, let us image, that god is creating the world. He decided to create a guy named Ian. He decides okay out of the 1000 options that could happen in this given time. Ian is going to do X, which will lead to B, and C. But what if C is the rape of a child. Then god would be responsible because he made it so, Ian would do X which ultimately led to C, and god knew it because he had middle knowledge and knew what Ian would choose in any given suitation. It bucks things back to the famous quote from Epicurius about how god is either evil or impotent. Middle knowledge as I understand it, when applied to the problem of evil makes god both. It doesn't mean god had no choice in allowing evil towards his goals. It means he wanted it to happen that way. That means he is no different then say Stalin, knowing that what he wanted was going to cause suffering on a massive scale. Murder to cause a good thing is still a murder, if you want to look at it in another light.

 

The problem of evil has two forms. The logical and the probabilistic. Middle knowledge definitively demonstrates that there is no logical problem of evil, and provides a plausible way of solving the probabilistic problem of evil. God can not make a free willed creature do things. All He can do is create the circumstances in which we will act. The world we see can plausibly be argued to be the optimum world in which free willed creatures can exist. Optimum from the stand point of God's goal which we assume is to allow His creation to accept Him in a loving relationship. IOW, this world may be the world in which the maximum number of people accept Him given our free will.

 

Read my posts in this thread. Read Craig's writing on the subject. If you truly want to understand you would take the time to study what is written on the subject.

 

Can an omnipotent God who knows his future actions have the ability to change them? Your problem with free will is that ultimately your god would know of every action that would take place depending on how he created the universe in a certain way. your God has made the opportunity for evil which is no different than making the evil itsself. the garden of eden is an example of this, God knows man will eat of the fruit yet he places the tree there anyways with that knowledge, is this not the equivalent of evil? And if God has no ability to change his future action then he is not a personal God but a machine instead. Also statsitics say that there can be an infinite number of different universes posibilities, this idea that our universe is the one where the most people accept jesus is absolutely rediculus, God is all knowing, he would know what is the best optimal universe, in fact there are an infinite number of the same outcome universe possibilities. If this world is the most optimal then your god is sick, or his power is greatly over exaggerated.

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If God's great plan was to give us free will so we could do good and evil, then why does he meddle with it and get into the affairs of men and change the course? If our choice is what's the "great ideal" with this creation, then miracles would be counter productive and even destructive of that goal.

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Guest Valk0010

If God's great plan was to give us free will so we could do good and evil, then why does he meddle with it and get into the affairs of men and change the course? If our choice is what's the "great ideal" with this creation, then miracles would be counter productive and even destructive of that goal.

That goes to a thought I have for awhile. Did paul have the ability to say no, on Damascus? Or how about Mary when she was told she would concieve? Those are both instances where God more or less forces them to make a decision by brute force.
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Paul Helm, on the other hand, maintains that the Middle-Knowledge View (Molinism) of Bill Craig has the same problem:

On the question of the authoriship of evil, there's not a hairsbreadth bewteen the Augustinian-Calvinist perspective and Craig's Molinism. According to Craig's description of Molinism, "God decreed to create just those circumstances and just those people who would freely do what God willed to happen" (p. 134). While this description does not ential that God is the author of sin (any more than the A-C perspective does), it does entail that God decreed all sinful acts to happen and decreed them precisely as they have happened. If this is so, the God of Molina and Arminius seems to be as implicated in the fact of evil as much (or as little) as the God of the A-C perspective
(p. 159).

http://formerfundy.blogspot.com/2010/11/is-god-author-of-evil-molinism-has-no.html
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Some opponents of Molinism claim that God's foreknowledge and knowledge of counterfactuals are examples of what God is going to actively bring about. That is, when Christ describes the response of the Sodomites in the aforementioned example, God was going to actively bring it about that they would remain until today.[3] Molinists have responded to this objection by noting that scripture contains examples of God's foreknowledge of evil acts. For example, the Israelites forsaking God, or Peter's denial of Christ, are both examples of what one would call overt acts of sin. Yet, according to opponents of Molinism, God is actively bringing about these overt acts of sin. This is obviously fallacious according to the Molinist. In order for this account of prophecy to be valid all prophecies must be wholly good, and never contain evil acts; but this is not what opponents believe to be the case.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molinism

 

Here is a good example of what you can't use when you get back. The reason why this doesn't work is, that it doesn't change the claim I am making. God is causing both evil and letting us know its going to happen, and the same goes to for god. It still goes back to the Frankenstein problem I mentioned earlier. If you are the creator of the knowingly evil Frankenstein you are responsible for evil and therefore evil. You can't be responsible for evil and still be a good person. That is just simple nonsense. You would have to argue an absurd position like, the holocaust isn't evil or the evil puppet master is not responsible for the actions of his puppets. This is just simple ethical common sense. But molinism throws it out the window. How you could not see it that way is beyond me, unless you can pull a rabbit out of your theological hat.

 

I guess you could look at it as, hey they could just potentially act right(us in a molinist setting) and sense they have the potential that lets god off the hook. The potential to not do evil. However that could only work in a vacuum and without ever considering cause and effect or how circumstance effects desicon making. I would have probably never deconverted for example if it wasn't for one day on a whim I put atheism into the youtube search bar and discovered a Christopher Hitchens lecture. That started the end of my faith. The end of my faith is supposedly a bad thing. The causes are the internet and that lecture. God created the world knowing that people would be in the circumstances needed to create the internet. He also created Hitchens in such a way knowing what circumstances would make him an atheist. The final end to my faith was learning about religion from a anthropological perspective. Circumstances that would have been designed by God created in me a curious enough mind to learn about such a thing.

 

Limited omnipotence, limited omniscience, no omnipotence, no omniscience. God is still the author of the situation by the simple fact that he created the earth this way in the first place. Arguments about who he is, or why he did it are mute. The fact that he did it alone makes him responsible for evil no matter who or what he is. And lets say for hypothetical sake, god was forced to create the world. Then there is no reason to call him god. And if he has no idea what would happen, that is countradictory to molinism. Either he created the world or he didn't and if there was evil he created indirectly then he is still indirectly responsible for evil. Creating even a potentially evil world makes him responsible for anything that happens because of that universe. That is because he created the potential. Ohh and parent analogies don't count here, because god knows fully what can or could happen by him creating the world. He is after all omniscient. A parent has no way to know if there kid is going to be the next jeffery dalmer or what could happen to create one. God knows. There is also a difference between creating a process and working within a process. The parent is working within the world.

 

Ya got a rabbit to pull?

 

Oh and I am not in the case of absurd conclusions. If there is no god, sure things like cause and effect and circumstance playing into how evil occurs, but those are random more or less and the people who do the deeds are responsible only. In the christian universe either one of these are the conclusion and neither of them are pretty. God either shares responsibility in the evil or is solely responsible for the evil. And if that is the case he can't be omnibenevolent or perfect. He is evil or at least partially evil.

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According to the defenders of Molinism, God knows perfectly what you would be have been like if you would have lived in Africa, or had a car accident that paralyzed you at age 9. He knows how the world would have been changed had John F. Kennedy not been assassinated. More importantly, He knows who would choose to be saved and who would not. Accordingly, it is from this knowledge that God chooses to create. God has middle knowledge of all feasible worlds, and He chooses to create the world in which the most people would be saved.
http://www.gotquesti...g/molinism.html

 

That makes god vain, thought he was perfect? Heaven is perfect and where he wants us? Logically then if the god is christian then he should be creating us in heaven. If this is the optimum world, then heaven is a joke.

 

You got a rabbit to pull?

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Some opponents of Molinism claim that God's foreknowledge and knowledge of counterfactuals are examples of what God is going to actively bring about. That is, when Christ describes the response of the Sodomites in the aforementioned example, God was going to actively bring it about that they would remain until today.[3] Molinists have responded to this objection by noting that scripture contains examples of God's foreknowledge of evil acts. For example, the Israelites forsaking God, or Peter's denial of Christ, are both examples of what one would call overt acts of sin. Yet, according to opponents of Molinism, God is actively bringing about these overt acts of sin. This is obviously fallacious according to the Molinist. In order for this account of prophecy to be valid all prophecies must be wholly good, and never contain evil acts; but this is not what opponents believe to be the case.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molinism

 

On a side note, it's strange that God is supposedly acting now (in a present moment) based on future events, it's a bit like "pre-crime" in "minority report." How can someone be guilty of doing an act before they're doing the act and even be punished for it without ever have done it? And if that's possible (or allowable) to do, then why wasn't Hitler aborted before he was even born? Knowing the future and being able to change the future, a good God would change it for the better for everyone.

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Guest Valk0010
Some opponents of Molinism claim that God's foreknowledge and knowledge of counterfactuals are examples of what God is going to actively bring about. That is, when Christ describes the response of the Sodomites in the aforementioned example, God was going to actively bring it about that they would remain until today.[3] Molinists have responded to this objection by noting that scripture contains examples of God's foreknowledge of evil acts. For example, the Israelites forsaking God, or Peter's denial of Christ, are both examples of what one would call overt acts of sin. Yet, according to opponents of Molinism, God is actively bringing about these overt acts of sin. This is obviously fallacious according to the Molinist. In order for this account of prophecy to be valid all prophecies must be wholly good, and never contain evil acts; but this is not what opponents believe to be the case.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molinism

 

On a side note, it's strange that God is supposedly acting now (in a present moment) based on future events, it's a bit like "pre-crime" in "minority report." How can someone be guilty of doing an act before they're doing the act and even be punished for it without ever have done it? And if that's possible (or allowable) to do, then why wasn't Hitler aborted before he was even born? Knowing the future and being able to change the future, a good God would change it for the better for everyone.

Yep if god is omnibenevolent and of perfect ethics then molinism still doesn't answer the problem of evil because of reasons like that. Thanks hans.
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To Ordinary Clay, Living Life, Centauri, Bornagainathiest, and everyone else who's interested:

 

I submit that the argument for Molinism (yes, time travel back to our discussion of April) is vitiated by an equivocation fallacy.

 

 

Hey guys, having done some digging (I actually have Molina's treatise in Latin from the library and in translation, that's how carried away I got by this argument), I have the thought at this point that the problem of the identity of "you" across possible worlds, when the Molinist says "God knows what you will do in every possible world," is connected to the problem of "transworld identity" in modal logic. this in turn is bound up with whole theories of how modal logic plays out. Seeing that this topic will take a huge amount of time to master, and other tasks lie unfinished, I am not going to go further with this question unless someone wants to carry the ball. In that case I'll consider whatever is said. My suspicion at this point is that what I thought was an equivocation is in fact not one, but I can't say why.

 

Anyway, thanks for pushing my thinking further!

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Till someone can prove to me, how molinism doesn't make god if not fully responsible at least significantly responsible for evil, then I have nothing really more to say about the subject myself. As I said, god becomes(or still is depending on how you want to look at it) the evil puppet master. And if not that, impotent and not worthy of worship.

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God is a super-intelligent programmer who is not responsible for the bugs in his code... I don't think so.

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In his introduction to his translation of part of Molina's treatise, Alfred Freddoso says that the disputes between Molinists and other Catholic theologians who were more predestinarian became so heated that Spain and Portugal begged the Vatican to decide. After ten years of close study by various delegated theologians, Pope Paul V declared in 1607 that the heated arguments had to cool down and that the Holy See would rule on Molinism in due time. They've never done it! Holy Fuck, I've got other stuff to do in my life.

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If you truly want to understand you would take the time to study what is written on the subject.

 

Nice to see my thread is still kickin'. I wish we could all understand about this subject as much as you clay. Maybe if we did we'd all still be xtards. You should prove bible god exists first, (which you can't do). After that, then you would discuss these other things as if god actually existed, debating bibles gods morality and actions, etc.

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I think a lot of christians hold onto the idea that a person has to believe before the moment of death to actually achieve "salvation". But I'm not entirely sure where this comes from. Maybe they assume that a person instantly goes to one place or the other depending on how they lived. But, there is a bible verse that would contradict that:

 

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad" (II Corinthians 5:10).

 

This would suggest that even after death a person would have an opportunity to accept or decline the offer of "salvation". Wouldn't it seem kind of ridiculous to let someone accept it on their death bed after going through their whole life not accpeting it, but denying people immediately after they die? And what about people who've never heard the "message"? Does the death rule apply to them? Why or why not? And if it did why would it not apply to everyone?

 

How anyone still believes in this shit, fuckin' A.

 

Apostle Paul wrote this to the church so I was under the impression that this was intended for people that are saved. this is when they are given the "rewards". But they have already been given eternal life. THis is just gravy.....or at least this is what I was always taught. I think its called the judgement seat of christ?

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