Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Brennon's Thoughts: Questions for Anti-Molinist Inerrantists

Brennon has asked some great questions on his blog that he believes Molinism answers, but God's decrees does not. My comments are in red.

How do you explain how God knew the two divergent paths that God foresaw if Zedekiah either chose to surrender to the king of Babylon or not (Jeremiah 38:17-18)? Assuming this was a free choice, God told Jeremiah to tell Zedekiah that if he chose to submit to Babylon, he, his city, and his family would all live. But God also foresaw the other possibility; what would happen if Zedekiah did not surrender, namely his death and his city's destruction. God obviously knew what would happen, and which choice Zedekiah would make. But God also knew what would happen if Zedekiah made the other choice.

I agree God knows each and every possibility and probability. God knew what Zedekiah would not surrender. I don't really see how that supports Molinism.  I  mean in order for everything that plays out the way that it did, the Babylonians had to destroy Jerusalem. Don't forget the fall of Jerusalem was prophesied many times before this point. I'm not saying that Zedekiah did not do what he himself wanted to do, but what I am saying that it's not a surprise because God already called this one centuries before through several prophets.  Check out Habakkuk 1 which some scholars date to the late 7th century BC and considering that Zedekiah made this decision around 586 BC - about 100 years later. Should not be a shock or a surprise.

How did Jesus know what Sodom would have done IF His miracles had been performed there in Matthew 11:23?

Jesus knew because Jesus is God and God knows everything.  Again I don't see how that supports Molinism.  I think a more important question that if God knew Sodom would have repented if  Jesus had performed his miracles, then why didn't God do that and prevent destroying them? The answer is that it was part of the overall plan God has. Where all things works together for them that love God and are called according to God's purpose (Romans 8:28-29) . God's will and purpose and ours. 

How did Jesus know what would happen if the disciples cast their net to the opposite side of their boat (John 21:6)?

Again Jesus knows everything. The question this begs is. Were the fish on the opposite side of the Boat because they just happened to be there or were they there because God told them to be there?  I don't know. In such a situation, maybe it doesn't matter.  I'd go the rout of decree because of all the little things that had to line up for those fish to be there. The weather, the currents, the time of day, the tides (gravitational forces on the water from the moon, sun, and other heavenly bodies), the life interactions and histories of each and every fish and their parents going back to the days of creation - had to line up just right for those fish to be on the side of the boat Jesus told them to throw their nets to. Not to mention all the factors I left out.  Why would we not serve a God like that?

Oh, and those of you who reject Molinism because of James White's weak polemic, you really need to repudiate that ridiculous picture he has floating around the web with Craig and the Pope. That's a pretty blatant genetic fallacy if I ever saw one.

I know when I saw that graphic Brennon mentioned I re-posted it myself. I didn't really stop to think that it might offend some people. If it did, I'm sorry. However, i think it illustrates some key points.

1. In his debate with Christopher Hitchens, William Lane Craig said Calvinism was a false Christianity.  I don't think that is true at all. No more than calling Jacob Arminius a heretic and claiming anyone who agree with him as bing hell-bound.

2. Molina came up with Molinism because he wanted to give an answer against the Reformers who began preaching that God was in complete control of everything regardless of what our free will says. Molina was a Roman Catholic clergyman and that was his job - come up with a counter answer. From what I can tell only Dr. William Lane Craig reaslly expounds on his ideas today and it's not popular in Roman Catholicism..
3. Picturing Craig with the Pope is not a genetic fallacy given that that Molinism is Roman Catholic invention and Craig has embraced the approach of magnifying the commonalities among Christians and downplaying the things we disagree on - y'know like the sinlessness of Mary and her being a Co-Redeemer with Christ.  Not all Roman Catholics hold these ideas, but the Pope does. Give the turns that WLC have made (not neccessarily sinful or bad) I see every reason to make the tie with the Roman Catholic Church.

Brennon's Thoughts: Questions for Anti-Molinist Inerrantists
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