From: Don Winterstein (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sun Feb 16 2003 - 05:15:54 EST
Don Perrett wrote:
God is omnipotent and exists outside of space and time, all seeing and knowing, he knows the future, present and past.
I acknowledge that these are widely held views, but being the nonconformist I am, I acknowledge them only as philosophy that's taken root in theology, and to me such views don't mean much. Scriptural support for some of these concepts, as I recall, comes mostly from expressions of worship and adoration that were never intended to serve as bases for theological principles. As I comprehend God, he lives in space-time like me. I believe he existed before space-time, so to that degree you can say he was also outside space-time.
Wait a minute. God seems to me to live in space-time like me, but he does not occupy any particular set of loci. Maybe that's what it means to be outside space-time. My body occupies a particular set of loci, but my spirit does not. So spiritual beings perhaps live outside space-time by virtue of their spirituality.
Anyway, God is a person to be known, not a philosophical principle to be fit into some system. The kinds of comments about God's nature and abilities that I respect are those that come from personal knowledge of him. From the Bible and personal experience I see God continually upholding the world but on occasion intervening in ways decidedly outside the range of what we'd call normal. Such "abnormal" interventions are what I mean by God's "special input."
Can't God just pre-plan any and all events needed to reach his desired goal? All of which would have been done and set into motion prior to creation and the events we see as God's intervention is in fact God's pre-planned periods/events of change.
I see this as an acceptable way of intellectually harmonizing the scientific view of the world with an acceptable Christian view. Unfortunately, the picture of God's personality that emerges from such concepts doesn't fit well with God as I know him. I kind of like the biblical view, which has God changing his mind from time to time. If these descriptions of mind-changing are mere anthropomorphisms, so be it; but a rigid, mechanical, supercomputer-type God I do not find appealing or, to my mind, realistic. God to me is a very personal kind of person.
What would make our WEAK minds believe that God would need to come in and make a change after things go wrong. Wouldn't that make him imperfect and incapable of controlling his own creation?
What is perfect, and who says God is, i.e., who besides philosopher-theologians? My new paradigm kind of implies that God gives the whole creation lots of opportunity to go wrong, and when it inevitably does, he puts it back on track. So God controls his creation to a degree consistent with his objectives; but one of his objectives is to keep the creation as independent as possible. His greatness shows not in absolute, universal, rigid, microscopic control but in his willingness to let the world drift freely within the boundaries of his overall objectives. Everyone knows, don't they, that control freaks are much smaller people than those who allow their subordinates some latitude.
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