Re: God and nature; miracles

From: Keith Miller (
Date: Fri May 16 2003 - 23:01:42 EDT

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    > If, as these people hold, that the only way an infinite and omnipotent
    > being can be omniscient is to be the cause of every event, then the
    > deity is the immediate source of every evil and sin. Since this would
    > make him more like the evil counterpart of Manicheism, etc., they deny
    > his omniscience and omnicompetence, and place God in time (or some
    > temporality connected to, but not identical with, time in the
    > universe). A deity which cannot know the future but is involved in its
    > ongoing causation is subject to surprise. Deterministic chaos
    > (science) or complexity theory (mathematics) then requires the
    > possibility (essentially necessity in infinite time) of catastrophe,
    > with no assurance that there is a way to rescue anything from the
    > resulting mess.

    I have read very little on this, but some that I have read in Pinnock
    et als. book "The Openness of God" would suggest that God need not be
    powerless in the face of the future even if that future is open and not
    preknown in its details. The idea as I understand it is that God is
    omnipotent in the sense that the ultimate fulfillment of God will for
    the Creation is assured. When God states unconditionally that a
    particular outcome will occur, God has the power to assure that
    outcome. It is just that God has chosen to give His creatures real
    choices that are not predetermined or preknown. We can truely grieve
    God and oppose his will, but we cannot thwart God's ultimate purposes.
    The authors argue this much better than I can.


    Keith B. Miller
    Research Assistant Professor
    Dept of Geology, Kansas State University
    Manhattan, KS 66506-3201

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