Re: The Problem of Good

Date: Tue Sep 09 2003 - 13:32:02 EDT

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    In a message dated 9/9/03 12:36:19 PM Eastern Daylight Time, writes:

    > I'm afraid I don't follow this. Kenosis is a metaphor adopted by Paul in
    > Philippians, chapter 2, to address the human/divine paradox of Christ's two
    > natures. It has nothing to do with God's creative activity. What would be
    > the biblical grounds for extending this metaphor to God "emptying" himself
    > of his omnipotence in order to create? Further, how could a potential for
    > evil be a good thing, unless we deny the reality of evil, and say that evil
    > (including a potential for evil) is really good? Finally, the original
    > question remains: is God's choosing to create such a world a necessity
    > imposed on him, or is the existence of a potential for evil a contingent
    > fact which might have been otherwise?

    I've been watching this thread. It's a lot simpler than this really. Only man
    is self-conscious, a creature of learned behavior. The lower animals are
    much more instinctively based. Their instincts guide them so they are always
    doing the will of God. However, living by instinct they cannot "create." They
    cannot hasten their own evolution and cannot sin because they just follow God's
    Man hastens his own evolution by learning. A Jewish Kaddish prayer says, it
    is hoped that the deceased assisted God in creation. Now God, in making free
    will available to man willingly sacrificed his own hegemony, withdrew and
    provided man with the opportunity to live independently rather than a slave of
    instinct while at the same time warning man of the pitfalls of free will. But man,
    once he had eaten the apple (developed self consciousness) without the
    advantage and routine of instinct makes mistakes. He sins. God gave us the gift of
    walking but sometimes we fall. That is the nature of free will. To be on target
    is to do God's will consciously. To sin is to miss the mark. God is not evil.
    The lower animals are not evil. Only man, who can freely will to miss the mark
    is evil. But when man chooses the right behavior, he recreates the world,
    assisting God in creation as the kaddish prayer suggests and most importantly, he
    hastens his own evolution through learning.

    And since God willingly withdrew and sacrificed his omnipotence (which is not
    giving it up, but simply permitting independent control - an act of love), it
    is only proper that man also sacrifice his self and give the gift of his free
    will back to God. That's the even exchange. I give it. You return it or not
    as you choose.

    rich faussette

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