Q to Ponder. Does the future exist right now?

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Ben Elohim, Feb 23, 2005.

  1. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    Does the future exist right now? Does tomorrow exist right now? Or is the term "the future" a way of describing a reality that we hope, or expect, to come into existence? If so, then can we conclude that the future, and tomorrow, presently do not exist? Is not "nothing" the word we use to describe something which does not exist?

    If tomorrow and the future do not yet exist then is it now nothing? Is not the word "nothing" the word we use to describe something that does not exist? Indeed, is there anything to know about nothing?

    So does anyone need to know something about nothing to know everything? What is there to know about nothing?
     
  2. lilrabbi

    lilrabbi
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    God knows all that is and will be, He planned them. They are as sure as HE IS. I'm just concerned about obeying what He's told me to do right now...not worrying too much about what's in the future.

    I wouldn't spend too much time pondering those thoughts. I'm not sure anything good can come out of it:p
     
  3. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    So what you are saying is that God knows about everything that does exist and about everything that does not exist. Is that right?
     
  4. lilrabbi

    lilrabbi
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    God's knowledge is inexhaustible. There is no possibility or potentiality that His mind has "overlooked." That said, I don't think God messes with potentialities and possibilities too much. Like I said, God knows all that is and all that will be, because He planned them.
     
  5. Andre

    Andre
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    Interesting question. If God holds a correct knowledge of the future "in his mind", then certainly the future exists in some sense. More interesting to me are the logical implications of this vis a vis free will - and no doubt such issues been discussed elsewhere. For example, if from the foundations of the world, God already knows what movie I will see on Friday February 25, 2005, how do I really have free choice in movie selection? In order for God's knowledge to prove correct, I must be constrained to follow a path that inexorably leads me to see the movie in question. I am aware of the "God exists outside of time" argument. While I see its appeal, I do not think it ultimately resolves the paradox.

    In any event, one might also assert that the future exists in relation to the predictability of physical processes. If someone whacks me in the kneecap right now, others may be pretty darn confident that my future holds pain (albeit only a few milliseconds in the future).

    In response to lilrabbi: I might agree that thinking about these things may have no practical consequences. OTOH, grappling with intellectually challenging problems sharpens the mind and this has general benefit.
     
  6. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    What is there to "overlook" conerning that which does not exist?
     
  7. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    So then, tomorrow does exist?
     
  8. Andre

    Andre
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Ben Elohim (and others):

    I would indeed say that it does. The information that lives in God's mind about the future is as "real" as the nose on my face. Less tangible maybe, but still real. I think we need to understand that "existence" is not just a property of "things". Ideas exist, knowledge exists, laws of physics exist, etc.

    Having said this, I am aware of at least one seeming paradox (already described in an earlier post) that arises from believing that tomorrow exists in God's mind.
     
  9. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    So then you claim to know the mind of God?

    So is today and everything that exists in today and everything that happens today simply something in the mind of God? Or is it also something that also exists outside the mind of God?

    Does a yet uncreated painting in your mind actually exist? Or does only the possibility of the painting exist in your mind?

    Yesterday I decided that I would get out of bed today. I got out of bed today. Did I know the future or make the future?
     
  10. lilrabbi

    lilrabbi
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    Is there any point to your wonderings and mental wanderings?
     
  11. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    The point is plainly evident. The idea that God requires knowledge of "the" future to be omniscient is based on misguided preconceived notion that "the" future is an existent dimension, realm or reality out there somewhere to be known something like "the world" is a spatial existent reality and realm to be known. It isn't. It does not exist. Tomorrow does not exist. There is no realm called tomorrow existing out there somewhere. Since it does not exist it is nothing and there is nothing to know about nothing.
     
  12. johnp.

    johnp.
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2004
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    0
    Your a busy chap Ben. Does the future exist right now?

    No.
    The future is yet to be. As a Christian I have no doubt that the future will come into existence as a present now. The future is secure. Time will continue forever.
    It exists in God's mind. A thing to be actualised. They do not exist as a fact now.
    Not nothing. Since 'it' is in God's mind to bring about what He will bring about then 'it' will be.
    I have met few people who can try to conceptualise 'nothing'. Those who I have spoken to invariably think of space or a space. Space is not nothing. But 'nothing' is not the right word for time is it? Friday afternoon is a time not a thing. :cool:
    The only way of truly understanding all about nothing is never to speak of it. That is a good way of descibing it. At least a singularity has some wriggle room but I find it impossible to visualise that popping out of existence. If it could then we would be left with
    How do we know what we don't know. I already have the feeling that I've learnt something about nothing as some on this board might agree with. But it is not nothing when it is called something is it?
    Another track is that it is a very powerful force. It is stronger than God because even God admits that nothing can snatch me away! :cool: Nothing is hidden so God has a job to locate nothing which is well because nothing is stronger than Him. :cool:

    johnp.
     
  13. Andre

    Andre
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Ben Elohim:

    You asked:So then you claim to know the mind of God?

    I have never claimed to know the mind of God. I merely claimed that God knows about the future.

    You asked: So is today and everything that exists in today and everything that happens today simply something in the mind of God? Or is it also something that also exists outside the mind of God?

    This question is quite interesting and challenging for a number of reasons. My immediate response is that "the things that happen today" do indeed exist outside the mind of God. If I build a snowman, it exists outside the mind of God.

    You asked: Does a yet uncreated painting in your mind actually exist? Or does only the possibility of the painting exist in your mind?

    Yes the painting does exist to a degree. The idea underlying the painting has "reality". You cannot touch it but it is real nonetheless. Of course, the "reality" of the painting is accessible to other people only when it has been painted.

    You asked: Yesterday I decided that I would get out of bed today. I got out of bed today. Did I know the future or make the future?

    I am not sure this question is posed in a way I can respond. However, I will say that you did not know the future - you could have been hit be an asteroid as you slept (fortunately this did not happen). To a certain extent you "made" the future by your committment to get out of bed.
     
  14. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    Your last comment there is not relevant to knowledge and omniscience question but to power and an omnipotence question.

    Where is your evidence that tomorrow and all that is tomorrow exists in God's mind such that all that will happen and come to exist tomorrow is already existent in the mind of God?

    Will you also claim that God knew Ninevah would repent before he sent Jonah to proclaim their destruction?
     
  15. johnp.

    johnp.
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2004
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Andre. Nice to meet you.


    Ben.

    But you know that about nothing so you must be wrong. There is much ado about it anyway! :cool:

    johnp.
     
  16. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    But you know that about nothing so you must be wrong. There is much ado about it anyway! :cool:

    johnp.
    </font>[/QUOTE]So then, will you insist that there is something to know about nothing besides it being nothing?
     
  17. Andre

    Andre
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    About God Knowing the Future

    Ps 139:2 "Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising; Thou understandest my thought afar off. 3 Thou searchest out my path and my lying down, And art acquainted with all my ways. 4 For there is not a word in my tongue, But, lo, O Jehovah, thou knowest it altogether. 5 Thou hast beset me behind and before, And laid thy hand upon me. 6 [Such] knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain unto it. … 16 Thine eyes did see mine unformed substance; And in thy book they were all written, [Even] the days that were ordained [for me], When as yet there was none of them."

    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; 11 calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man of my counsel from a far country; yea, I have spoken, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed, I will also do it"

    Now I should tell you, Ben Elohim, that I am aware of the pitfalls of grabbing snippets of Scripture without a careful analysis of the context - one can support almost any position this way. And you should also know that I am in no way "married to" a belief that God knows the future. If you want to make the case that He does not, pray, proceed. You did make a previous post where you stated your position. Do you have something more substantial?
     
  18. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    So God decided how many days he would live? What does that have to do with "knowing the future?" I decided how long to be on this board yesterday. It came to pass. I didn't "know the future." I saw a drawing too before I made it. It does not mean I "knew the future." It means I made it.

    Same thing. God making things happen is not "knowing the future."

    And what would fulfill your personal criteria of substantial?

    And still wondering if God deceived the Ninevites knowing all along they would repent anyway.
     
  19. Andre

    Andre
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Ben Elohim:

    I understand the conceptual distinction between knowing the future and making the future. However, if one believes in an omnipotent God, this distinction disappears. When you or I see a drawing in our mind's eye, you are correct in pointing out that we "make the future" in respect to the drawing - we do not know it. For all we know, we will be struck dead before our plans are realized.

    For God, however, the situation is different. If he decides that you will live to 80, this is how it will turn out. Unlike us, his intentions are always fulfilled. So for all intents and purposes, for God to ordain or make the future necessarily involves him knowing the future.

    Once more, such concepts as God's omnipotence and omniscience can be debated. But if you buy into God's omnipotence and the idea that he ordains the future (with the additional and admittedly debatable caveat that he does not change his mind), it seems that when He ordains the future, he cannot help but know it as well.
     
  20. lilrabbi

    lilrabbi
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    "Chasing endless geneologies..." this is the most fruitless discussion I've ever read or been a part of. Andre hit it on the head. He took the long way to say, "this is a waste of time and cyberspace."

    BTW - I didn't know there were this many canadians in the world!
     

Share This Page

Loading...