Foreknowledge of God

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by freeatlast, Aug 8, 2004.

  1. freeatlast

    freeatlast
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    The following is an aticle I wrote because of a discussion with another baptist. I would like others imput on it good or bad.
    By the way I will include a link to anothers view in somewhat agreement. He gets into some deeper calvinism, but I am not interested in getting into that. I am only interested in the Foreknowledge of God.

    God’s foreknowledge;

    God is all knowing. However that does not mean He knows every event in all history before it happens. He clearly did not know that men would become as evil as they have, based on certain scriptures of regret that He shows when it does come to light and I will list some in the following article. If He knew ahead of time that men would be like they are and then declare that He is repented that He ever made man it makes no sense since it is inevitable to happen. That is not to say that he did not know the possibilities, but the actual happenings were un-known until they took place. Also such a belief that God knows all history before it happens makes God subject to that history since it cannot be changed. It requires God to work according to that history and not according to Devine Sovereign power that he alone has vested to Himself.

    God is Sovereign and he works within that attribute without knowing every event before it happens. Nothing can overcome Him since He alone holds all power and authority for all eternity. This is not to suggest that God is learning new things. He is not. God has no more knowledge today then He did in eternity past. He alone posses’ all knowledge, but that knowledge is knowledge that can be known based on His Holy nature, not on some crystal ball type system of future events. Every prophesy in the bible of future events is not Him looking ahead and telling us what will be. Those who hold that view have a much too small god in power and ability since that would mean that He does not control history, but watches to see how it will work. All prophesy is God deciding what will be and declaring it (predestining) then telling forth His knowledge of it to us so we can see the mighty hand of God in action throughout time.
    God has ordained the beginning and the end and certain events in-between which we have scripture on. The cross is one event he has done this with. There are many others however. The rest of History will play into the plan as He has set it in motion and nothing can change that. God has not need to know future events outside His predestined will since all will come to closure as He has ordained it to be and foreknows it though faith by predestination of His sovereign choosing. We are told that all that the father gives the Son will come to Him. This is Sovereign choice and predestined will of God or foreknowledge as is translated in scripture.
    I personally believe that to teach that foreknowledge is God knowing what will happen in history before it happens apart from predestination is to deny the absolute sovereignty of God since it makes God subject to things to come rather then things to come subject to God’s predestination (foreknowledge).

    GEN. 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

    There is no need for being sorry for making man if He knew ahead of time all that men would do.

    EX. 32:14 And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.
    Again, this would be an empty threat if he knew that He was going to not do it any way.

    What about verses that claim that God has foreknowledge;

    Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:

    First let’s look at the words (determinate). The Greek word that translates this is; horizon which means; 1) to define
    a) to mark out the boundaries or limits (of any place or thing)
    1b to determine, appoint
    1) that which has been determined, acc. to appointment, decree
    2) to ordain, determine, appoint

    In other words God ordain that Christ would be killed. Man only followed through with Gods determination.

    Counsel: the Greek word is boule {boo-lay'} and means; 1) counsel, purpose. In other words it was God’s purpose and appointment that Christ dies for men and that men kill Him on a cross. God ordained will of God took place. By this we now can better understand the word (foreknowledge). God foreknew because He foreordained. The greek word for foreknowledge is; prognosis {prog'-no-sis} . It means; 1) foreknowledge
    2) forethought, pre-arrangement
    His knowledge was perfect because He declared what was to take place. Now with that in mind as with any exegetes what the term means in one place it has to carry the same meaning in other places unless there is clear evidence that the word has a different meaning. The conclusion is that when God claims foreknowledge he is claiming to know because He ordains what is being spoken of. In other words nothing can overcome the word of God and what he ordains so he knows what he says will happen like He says it.

    In 1Peter 1:2 we read;
    Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

    The passage is saying that those who come to God are his elect through the sanctification of the Spirit unto obedience and the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ and this is all by His foreknowledge. That means that God in eternity past ordained salvation by the stated process. It is Not that He necessarily knew who would be saved or who would not. It is the foreknowledge that we the elect would be His elect by the stated manner of salvation.

    In Romans 11:2 we have the same issue;
    God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,

    The word foreknew is the same Greek word proginosko {prog-in-oce'-ko} which again means 1) to have knowledge before hand
    2) to foreknow
    a) of those whom God elected to salvation
    3) to predestinate
    So He knows because he ordains it. Not because He knows by looking down through History to see what will happen. The same Greek word is translated foreknow 2, foreordain 1, know 1, know before, throughout scripture, but is not to be confused with knowing because of looking down through history. It always means to know because of ordaining it. To ordain means to decide that it will happen. So God knows what will happen when He ordains it to happen. Throughout scripture He ordains certain things to take place and by that He knows (determines) the end from the beginning. Foreknowledge. Praise God for His foreknowledge.

    The following is an article by ARTHUR W. PINK
    http://www.pbministries.org/books/pink/Attributes/attrib_04.htm
     
  2. GODzThunder

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    I am of the belief that God does not predict the future, he makes it! Nothing exists or happens without his consent (no this is not calvinism, I do believe in the freewill of the believer).

    I believe that God exists outside of time itself in eternity and knows all and makes happen what he will. I imagine that God stands looking at the beginning present (our present) and ending already as if it all happened.
     
  3. Artimaeus

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    God is omniscient. He knows everything. If there is something He doesn't know then His knowledge is imperfect and He isn't God.

    Psa 139:4 Even before there is a word on my tongue,
    Behold, O Lord, You know it all.

    Psa 147:5 Great is our Lord, and mighty in power; His understanding is infinite.

    Isa 46:9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me; 10 declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done; saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure;

    Job 36:4 For truly my words are not false: One that is perfect in knowledge is with thee.

    Rom 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out!
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    Cannot disagree more vehemently. It is demeaning to an omniscient God to say "He clearly did not know".

    He is the Sovereign of the Universe and nothing is a "surprise" to Him. Or if not, He is not God.
     
  5. Watchman

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    Cannot disagree more vehemently. It is demeaning to an omniscient God to say "He clearly did not know".

    He is the Sovereign of the Universe and nothing is a "surprise" to Him. Or if not, He is not God.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Good point Doc; the original poster lost me at that point as well. God's absolute omniscience; past, present and future is clearly one of His attributes.
     
  6. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    This is the very core of Open Theism. It is purely and simply wrong. To me, if God is not omniscient He is not God. NOTHING surprises God - full stop.

    Is this man's feeble attempt to try and explain great tragedies like 9/11? "Why did God let this happen?" one might ask. An Open Theist can answer - "God did not know it was going to happen."

    I prefer the Isaiah 55v8,9 response.
     
  7. Marcia

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    Freeatlast, it sounds almost like you are advocating Open Theism, or at an aspect of it.

    Good refutations of God not knowing the future are Bruce Ware's "God's Lesser Glory" and "The Battle for God" by Norman Geisler.

    Also, go to this site and scroll down to see a list of articles and links refuting Open Theism.
    http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/topic/foreknowledge.html
     
  8. freeatlast

    freeatlast
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    Cannot disagree more vehemently. It is demeaning to an omniscient God to say "He clearly did not know".

    He is the Sovereign of the Universe and nothing is a "surprise" to Him. Or if not, He is not God.
    </font>[/QUOTE]No Bob it is not demeaning to God. it may be to your belief system which you cannot even began to show proof from scripture, but it is not demeaning to God. If you read scripture he is surprised from time to time. That is why we see it say that it repentance Him that he ever created man. If he knew all that we would do and nothing cvould change it then say i repent that i made you when we do it there is a big problem.
     
  9. freeatlast

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    The Paslm 139 passaage shows that god knows our thoughts, not all history before it happens.

    Psalm 147 is true, but it would not include all of time. Even Jesus who was God did nto know everything according to His own words.

    Isa 46 says He declairs the beginning from the end. In other words God has started all we see and will end it in His own way as he has said. However much of the inbetween is playing along and not known by Him until it happens.

    Job 36 gives no evidence of prior knowledge of all history.

    Romans 11 do not show a knowledge of all history. They are true in what they apply to but they do not suggest that he holds the knowledge of all eternal history.
     
  10. freeatlast

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    This is the very core of Open Theism. It is purely and simply wrong. To me, if God is not omniscient He is not God. NOTHING surprises God - full stop.

    Is this man's feeble attempt to try and explain great tragedies like 9/11? "Why did God let this happen?" one might ask. An Open Theist can answer - "God did not know it was going to happen."

    I prefer the Isaiah 55v8,9 response.
    </font>[/QUOTE]No the feeble attemp is from you. God knew about 911 since He knows the plans of men. However there is no reason that 1000 years ago or even 100 he knew about 911.
     
  11. freeatlast

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    Marcia,
    thank you for the link. No I am not an open theist. I do not agree with much of whta they say. I am always amased that whern anyone holds to even a small part of some belkief system that is considered false they are accreaded to holding to that system. many are called calvinists because they hold to a small part of what calvin taught. or another is called a despinsationalist because they hold to a small part of what they believe. In my case I never met calvin or have read any of his works. I have read some history on him and I do not like him. he was a murderer in my opinion. As to being a dispensationalist I am not nor am I an open theist. However if you listen to those who want to put labels on others they usually decide what the labeld person believes even if they never make the statement that they believe it.
    I am waiting for clear scripture evidence that supports that God knows all eternal history before it happens. What i am saying is that he decides history in many instances and in that he knows. By the way there is no such thing as total free will since the time after the fall. Men may think that they decide their fate,but God dterminds their steps.
     
  12. freeatlast

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    Cannot disagree more vehemently. It is demeaning to an omniscient God to say "He clearly did not know".

    He is the Sovereign of the Universe and nothing is a "surprise" to Him. Or if not, He is not God.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Good point Doc; the original poster lost me at that point as well. God's absolute omniscience; past, present and future is clearly one of His attributes.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Watchman
    then you should have no problem proving it clearly by scripture or is it thta many have added to his word by this false doctrine of Him knowing all eternity before it happens.
     
  13. freeatlast

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    There is no biblical reasoning to believe that God knows all history. However lets for the sake of argument say That He does. Then that means that there was a point in which He did not know and had to search it out to know. Also it means that all history is set in time and cannot be changed since He already knows it. If it can be changed then He cannot know the change and it is not set. Also it means that if He knows it He is subject to what will happen and has to work around history rather then be in control of it. Finally it means that history is an entity in itself and greater then God. I reject all that for the belief that God does not know every event in all eternity before it happens but does control all eternity and I base that on scripture references.
     
  14. Craigbythesea

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    God is obligated to know everything whether He wants to know it or not. :D :D :D :eek: ;) [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Watchman

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    freeatlast
    Once in a while someone on this board expresses some very frightening views, but your views expressed here go to the very heart of who God is.
    That makes me very fearfull for you. There are many passages that clearly show that God knows the end from the beginning, that He knows all that is within us and what we will do and that He knows, exactly, what will happen the next day, year or century. But I feel you do not want to hear those passages. Folks with your mindset, just as the Mormons, JW's, etc., have their mindset, and don't want to be bothered with the (scriptual) facts.
    Marcia is quite correct, the teaching you are advocating is Open Theism, regardless of rather you like the label or not. Marcia gives a link there to a websight that refutes this teaching, but I feel that you will not go there, or dismiss all of what is said there; as I alluded to before, you probably do not want to be bothered with the facts.
    If nothing else, discuss your views with your Pastor. I cannot believe that any Pastor, worth his salt, would hold to this view. I hope that maybe he can show you the right way, because, if you are one of His sheep, you have wandered away from the truth. I don't mean to lecture, I plead with you, this is for your sake. You are going against essential doctrine.
    Best Wishes
     
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    I agree folks - FAL is advocating a theology of a god who is not God. If God does not know all He is not God.

    The passages supplied are sufficient - FAL is looking for us to come up with a verse that says something like, "I am the LORD, I know every little thing that will ever happen throughout all of history from the beginning to the end of time." Nope, I can't find that verse.

    He is the Alpah and Omega, the beginning and the end. Being that, how can one claim He does not know what will happen from beginning to end?

    My God knows everything, the scriptures given above attest the that. I can rest in absoulte assurance that He knows all and that He is always in control. Nothing has ever surprised God.
     
  17. freeatlast

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    Prove that with scripture.
     
  18. freeatlast

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    Knowing bthe end from the begining is not the same as knowing all history before hand. Give the scriptures that teah that He knows every event before they happen and knows them in eternity past.
     
  19. Marcia

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    Posted by Freeatlast:
    What makes you think that God does not know what will happen? You are the one advocating a deviant view of God but you have not supported it. The totality of scripture supports a God who knows everything past, present and future. So where is the scriptural support for your view?

    Also, I do not understand the statement above. Why was there a point "in which He did not know and had to search it out to know?"
     
  20. Craigbythesea

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    Am I to understand that you believe that you have the authority to decide for our sovereign God that He is obligated to know the future whether He may chose to or not to in a given situation or set of situations? Your theology reduces our Sovereign Lord to a servant of your will. That is the very antithesis of who and what God is! Either God is sovereign, or He is not. If He is sovereign, He is under no obligation to bow down to you and know everything that YOU believe he should know. The Bible DOES NOT teach that God knows everything! The Bible does teach that God has been surprised by, and disappointed by, the decisions that some people have made. How dare you criticize a man for disagreeing with your petty, shallow theology? :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:
     

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