If God knows everything that we do past present and future and he knows the destiny of all things, then how exactly do we humans have free will?
Foreknowledge is not predestination. There's no conflict, really. Your hypothetical guy-in-the-sky may be prescient and know what we're going to do but that doesn't mean that we are compelled to do such things. It would still be our own choice.
That's a good and perplexing question. I'm anxious to see some of the answers that you get.
THAT, my friend, is one of greatest paradox's to the concept of an "All Knowing" (Omniscient) and "All Powerful" (Omnipotent) God concept where "Free Will" is supposed to be part of the scenario.
A God that is Perfect, can only be Righteous, and Just based on His COMPLETE knowledge of past, present and future events. Giving Man the notion that it is their decision to accept or reject Him, only allows for a complete break down of ALL of those things which make up God's nature. The best question to ask any Christian is "Can you kill a man that God has plans for here on earth?" If you answer "Yes, you have free will you are not a robot.", then you immediately change a Perfect God to a Reactionary God, eliminating Perfection, Righteousness, Omniscience, Omnipotence and being Just. "If you say "No, you cannot go against the will or plan of God." then you are freely admitting that Free Will is a façade. Your actions are either free (and you reap rewards or punishment) or they are predestined (you have no fate other then what God has declared for your role).
IF we consider one to be Predestined, then ALL indoctrination of any kind, be it raising of children or evangelizing, is not only NOT needed, but wholly unwarranted.
Easy. You are the god you seek.
To fit into such a scheme God would have to create each individual in such a way that it would automatically do just what he had predestined for it to do. Yes we as humans were created with free will. Do you realize what a precious gift that is? God has made countless animals, and these are driven largely by instinct. (Proverbs 30:24) Man has made some robots that can be programmed to follow every command. Would we be happy if God had made us like that? No, we are glad to have the freedom to make choices about what kind of person to become, what course of life to pursue, what friendships to form, and so on. We love to have a measure of freedom, and that is what God wants us to enjoy. Therefore it we did not possess free will, but instead our course were fixed for us, we would not have the power of molding our minds according to our wishes, according to the things we chose to take into the brain.
For Catholics, when God "establishes his eternal plan of ‘predestination,’ he includes in it each person’s free response to his grace." Thus, anyone who is finally saved will have been predestined by God because it was God’s predestined plan and God’s grace that went before him and enabled him to be saved.
However, this does not mean that God has predestined anyone for hell. Indeed, the Bible cannot be any plainer than to say God is, "not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance" (2 Pt 3:9). God wills all to be saved. To be damned, a person must willfully reject God’s "predestined plan" for his salvation (cf. CCC 2037): Simple enough.
I'll take a shot :)
We are always in Gods presence because we are part of it, but blinded by ideas like time, and what is deemed reality ie things we can only see or experience with our limited senses ie the flesh, we believe we are separate from it and each other, we have become convinced in all types of things and ideas. The more we are taught about how to experience this world the further away from the supreme being we become.
Being with the God we experience no separateness, no fear, no violence, fleeting desires are crushed, we are fulfilled.
We were given choice to be independent. The more violence we carry out the less we remember who we really are. When a baby leaves the womb it is a violent onslaught to the senses, coldness, pain, hunger etc. Hence we become acquainted with fulfilling the senses but never the spirit.
So the free will lies in a choice to experience separateness, the omniscient lies in the fact that God knows in reality we are not apart from it.
Right that's enough hot chocolate for me, methinks, time for bed :)
That's a hard question to answer.
God does give people the opportunity to choose what they do with their life. (Deuteronomy 30:19,20) While He has the ability to know things in advance, He does not always chose to use it.
If god knew my past I would have done burned in hell three times over but I became a good boy and sobered up and no more sins.
It is true that God has the ability to look into the future if he so chooses. Our having free will means we can choose our own path in life to worship or not worship him., and like a good Father he has revealed the out come for the path we choose. Proverbs 16:25,"There is a way that seems right to a man, But in the end it leads to death." John 17:3 " This means everlasting life,their coming to know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ." We have free will to choose which path to take no one is forced it is up to the individual person.
I don't think it matters. He may or may not know the destiny of all things but I sure as hell don't know my own destiny or his plan. Whether or not I have free will doesn't change the fact that I or you don't know what tomorrow will bring. So unless him or somebody that works for him tells me what he has planned I'm going to go ahead and think that I have some say in how I run my life.