• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

If God knows everything there is no such thing as free will. Discuss

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

'If God knows everything there is no such thing as free will' Discuss The word omniscience means all-knowing, Judaism, Christianity and Islam all teach that God is omniscient; however there is often dispute as to exactly how much he does know and if he really does know everything does this diminish our freedom to act as we please? God's knowledge of the future may have great implications for the idea of human free will, if God knows that something will happen tomorrow then it is impossible for us to do anything else, similarly if we decide to change our mind at the last minute God even knows this. ...read more.

Middle

Instead of defining it was 'I could have done otherwise' maybe we should say that we are free if we were not under any external constraint and were amongst the causes of our actions. This is known as soft determinism; in other words this is an attempt to combine the opposing theories of libertarianism (total freedom) and hard determinism (no freedom), this theory teaches that freedom to act is doing what we want to, without any external interference and completely voluntary but that our own values, desires and general psyche determine how we will act in certain situations. ...read more.

Conclusion

Some thinkers concede that free will is not possible. They argue that God is omniscience and free will is only apparent. These views fall in line with predestination (the belief that God chooses some to be saved) One final solution to God's omniscience overpowering our free will is the idea of timelessness. Richard Swinburne believes that God is everlasting and progresses through time. He defines omniscience in a similar way to omnipotence. Basically it is not to know everything, but knowledge of everything that is logically possible to know. Hod's knowledge may include all future events that are predictable by physical laws but leaves aside free will choice. He also suggests that omniscience may even leave room for God's free choices, for example responding to people's prayers ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Philosophy section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Philosophy essays

  1. Our freedom to make ethical choices is an illusion Discuss

    However Honderich rejects the claims of quantum physics, saying that they only apply at the subatomic level. The principle of causality is taken for granted when considering freedom as the opposite of causality is randomness. Random events are no freely chosen than behaviour determined by the laws of physics so rejects free will.

  2. 'God is omniscient so therefore we cannot have free will(TM) Discuss.

    in certain situations we may be manipulated to choose a certain action. This is known as behaviourism. Psychologists Ivan Pavlov conditioned dogs to salivate at the sound of a bell. Skinner used Pavlov's experiment to develop his theory of Operant Conditioning.

  1. Conscience is the voice of God - discuss

    Singer rejected the latter idea of conscience without reason. Instead, he would consider that St. Thomas Aquinas' definition, 'the mind of man making moral decisions', comes closest to the truth. Aquinas rejected Augustine's theory of innate moral knowledge and instead favoured the Aristotelian idea of still using 'right reason' (recta

  2. Sartre is a very strong proponent of strong determinism, that is, he does not ...

    I think this is where the first problem with indeterminism arises. By stating that all of our actions are caused by these random occurrences, free will does not actually seem to enter the equation. Instead of being slaves to rules and order as with determinism, we now find ourselves slaves to chance.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work