Author Topic: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity  (Read 417 times)

Offline james03

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #15 on: November 10, 2018, 10:32:18 AM »
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My future is already locked
From the perspective of God?  Yes.
From the perspective inside of time? No.  You have free will, by which we mean you are not compelled by God.  You are not a puppet.

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I find it disgusting that you're so full of yourself that you think you're worth the brutal torture of millions of people. That's narcissism and insensitivity at its worst. I would trade my being born for the Holocaust not occurring.
  I don't think that I am worth the brutal torture of millions of people.  God does.  Me and billions of others.  If that didn't happen, I could never exist.  There is no way around it.

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No alternate possibilities = No libertarian free will. So are you a compatibilist now?
  In a way, yes, if you go by my inside/outside of time dichotomy.  I have not studied this philosophy, so I can't answer beyond that.

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No external coercion, but he still only had access to one future.
  Again, depends upon the perspective.  ULTIMATELY he only has one future.  God is already there.

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I thought the whole point of free will is being able to choose to accept or reject God. On your version of free will, it's inevitable what I choose. It's in line with what I desire (so "free" in one sense), but my desires aren't up to me in an ultimate sense.
  It's a lack of compulsion vs. the Calvinist belief.  Also, people sometime oversimplify.  It is a process over time with perhaps millions of choices.  Sometimes you choose the Good,  sometimes you choose an inordinate good.  God sends Graces to help, but in the perspective of man, we ultimately decide whether to cooperate with Grace or not.  This is for actual Graces. 
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #16 on: November 10, 2018, 05:34:11 PM »
J.L. Stated:
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    On a practical level, how this works (seeing as there are relatively few souls who rebel so consciously against God like the devil), is that at some point before a person dies, God speaks to a man's soul (in a more or less obscure way) and asks them to accept some suffering or humiliation which they've experienced in return for eternal bliss and fellowship with Him. The damned souls basically say, "no, I can't forgive you for letting me go through that; I'd rather hate you forever, even if it means I'll be miserable" (mortal sin, the sin against the Holy Ghost / final impenitence). With those who are saved God speaks in the same way and they accept the suffering and humiliation as part of God's plan, and hope for fellowship with Him in the next world.
To which sedmohradsko queried:
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If this is true, then wouldn't that mean Christ is not necessary to attain salvation?
No, the graces that all men receive, come through the merits of the Passion and death of Our Lord. If what J.L. Stated is true, then this grace of final salvation or rejection would be a grace from Our Lord's Passion and death; and certainly one obtained through the hands and intercession of Our Blessed Mother. There is a dispute among Catholic theologians on whether or not "explicit" faith in The Blessed Trinity and Our Lord Jesus Christ are necessary for salvation; or whether "implicit" faith in these mysteries is sufficient. If the latter theologians are right, then there is no impediment to positing the above scenario as possible.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP
 

Offline Davis Blank - EG

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #17 on: November 10, 2018, 10:00:05 PM »
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The only meaningful definition of love would be to will the permanent happiness of the other. Otherwise, a parent could be loving even if they only make their child happy for 1 second before torturing them in the basement for hours. After all, the child received a good?

Thomists are out of their mind.

In a reasoned discourse in which both sides aim to seek the truth there is a charitable meeting of the minds.  If one argument is to be refuted the best practice is not to tear it down, but to make its case even stronger, and then refute it.  And if an argument is misunderstood, questions are asked in earnest, not for purposes of persuasion.

But when a man is out to prosleytize he might go the low road and use whatever rhetoric is in his arsenal.  In this case, you make the straw man and then knock him down.

What is your purpose?  The former or the latter?
 

Offline Michael

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #18 on: November 10, 2018, 10:21:28 PM »
When it comes to Christian determinism, I have no respect whatsoever. A god who wants children to be raped and to torture people forever... If one thinks that is just, they deserve ridicule. Same thing to anyone who defines "love" as merely willing your own happiness with no regard for the creative's well-being.
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #19 on: November 10, 2018, 10:29:36 PM »
God's plan was for everyone to be happy in this life and in eternity; it didn't work out, not because of God, but because of men and specifically because of sin. On determinism: Determinism doesn't work, because rewards or punishments are given by God in accordance to our good or evil deeds, as Christ explains in His description of the final judgement: "You gave me to eat, when I was hungry, etc. You did not feed me when I was hungry, etc."  Rewards or punishments only make sense if they are distributed to those who truly earn them; in order to truly earn them, one must be free to do or not to do them.
The horrors that now occur in our world are the result of sin; but God is able to draw good out of even these horrible things that men do, that are contrary to His will and commands.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP
 

Offline Michael

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #20 on: November 10, 2018, 10:59:29 PM »
How can a timeless being have an "original" plan and an altered one? That would mean God changed His will.

Babies prove that free will is not needed to go to heaven. If God loved us, He would skip the trial and put us in Heaven from the start. Not to mention, God never had to pass a trial and yet He gets eternal bliss, so it's only fair He'd do the same for His creation.
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #21 on: November 10, 2018, 11:17:32 PM »
There was plan "A" which involved Adam's obedience to God and his passing on to his descendants the preternatural gifts of immortality etc. And the plan "B": Adam disobeys, then the redemption becomes necessary. Babies go to Heaven, because of the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ. So somebody, Our Lord, did pay their price.
True, God never had to pass a trial; but God is eternal, and He has always possessed happiness. He is a unique case.  But God in His goodness planned to share this eternal happiness with intelligent creatures, that He would admit into His intimate friendship, through the Beatific vision. That creatures would not be admitted without proving their worthiness; is a result of God's justice, which deemed that such a great gift required such a proof. God does love us, but He does all things in the correct order and manner.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP
 

Offline Michael

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #22 on: November 10, 2018, 11:33:35 PM »
Is this plan A mentioned in scripture or in theological writings?

If you reject determinism, why are you not an open theist? On open theism, I can do A or B without proving that God was wrong.
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: The Fundamental Problem of Christianity
« Reply #23 on: November 11, 2018, 10:36:24 AM »
Is this plan A mentioned in scripture or in theological writings?

If you reject determinism, why are you not an open theist? On open theism, I can do A or B without proving that God was wrong.
Yes, most Catechisms mention this when they speak of the creation of both the Angels and of Men. The endowment of our first parents with not only supernatural gifts of Sanctifying Grace and the virtues but also the preternatural gifts of immortality and impassibility etc. Shows that God did not intend men to either suffer or die; but to live happily in this life, and then to pass peacefully from this life into eternity.
Re. "Open Theism": I've never heard of this term before but I found this definition:
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Open Theism is the thesis that, because God loves us and desires that we freely choose to reciprocate His love, He has made His knowledge of, and plans for, the future conditional upon our actions. Though omniscient, God does not know what we will freely do in the future.
The problem that I see with the definition, is that it holds that God is both omniscient and at the same time ignorant. It would be a contradiction to hold both opinions. On the contrary, the part up to where it states that God is omniscient, would be a Catholic definition. God does not force an intelligent creature to love Him, but He does offer that creature the invitation to love Him. But God also knows what decision the creature will choose, before that decision is made.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP