Does God Have Foreknowledge?

The problem with claiming God has ‘foreknowledge’ is that it implies all future events are already determined. This would only be the case in a kind of clockwork universe where cause leads to effect and nothing can change the wheels that have been set in motion, presumably in the first moment of creation, as those who believe in a ‘big bang’ theory might suppose.

But does it make sense to suggest that God waved a magic wand, said ‘Go!’ and then reclined back on His cloud in heaven to observe the universe unfolding for all eternity? Of course not. God is not just the creator but the sustainer and animator of all things. He is working in this very moment to carry out His will, and the future, although it may be planned by God, is not certain until He brings it about. God is living and He is everywhere in this single eternal moment – He is all that there is and all of existence is contained within His being.

In any moment God can choose to unfold the next chapter of the story as He chooses and according to the infinite possibilities available to Him. To deny this would be to limit His power, and I believe He is omnipotent. Those who believe in a clockwork universe must either deny God altogether, or if they do believe in God, I would ask them to explain who or what God is, where He is, and what He is doing right now.

What is God doing right now? Feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts.

5 comments

  1. I gotta say that right now God is keeping me company at at 3.45am and helping me get through another hard night. He wants me to look at some of your work Steven and I want you to look at mine, on `theartistpgkimble.com` Thanks be to God brother.

    1. Hi Peter! Are you OK? How come you’re up so late and having a hard night? Perhaps you don’t want to give details in a comment (you are welcome to email me). If I can help through prayer or anything else, let me know.

      I clicked the link but I think it might be incorrect as it just took me to a page with a bunch of links to Google ads?

      God bless you!

      Steven

  2. Hi Steven!

    We hope you are well.

    I think God having foreknowledge does not require that everything has been predestined; it requires the ability to know what will happen. I think that God has not predestined all the events and I found the link below from the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy rather interesting, informative and helpful:

    http://www.iep.utm.edu/foreknow/

    Peace and love to all,

    Dinos and Demetra

    1. Hi Dinos!

      Thanks for your comment and the link to the article, which looks really interesting; I read the introduction and have saved the link so might revisit and read the whole thing later when I have more time.

      I think I see your point, and I think we can look at foreknowledge in two ways. Firstly, there is the idea that God knows what is going to happen because He plans and determines things as times passes along. All events are planned in the mind of God in much the same way as humans might plan a trip or a project, for instance. This makes sense to me, but if this is the case then surely there cannot be free will? Secondly, there is the determinist argument (the perspective I was questioning in the blog post); the ‘clockwork universe’ approach, which says God has foreknowledge because everything is unfolding in accordance with a set of laws He has set in motion. This perspective seems to position God as somehow outside of creation which is why I find it difficult to accept (as you know, I believe God is omnipresent).

      God bless you and Demetra,

      Steven

  3. Hi Steven!

    I’m inclined to agree with you on the issue of free will, although I’m not entirely certain. There appears to be a difference between people in third world countries, who have to work long hours just to survive, and those of us who live in relatively prosperous countries, who have leisure time, or at least non-work time, when they don’t have to sleep. You could just say that the quality of life is generally better for folk who live in prosperous countries, and the sense of freedom we think we have is illusionary.

    David MacRaney, in his book, “You are not so smart,” explains how deluded we are without mentioning God, so there we have another view that suggests we are not as “free” as we think. A link below refers –

    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11709037-you-are-not-so-smart

    If we do not have a degree of freedom, can you explain why God has allowed people from richer countries the luxury of illusionary freedom, while depriving those from severely poor countries such illusions, as well as wealth, and even basic living needs?

    The website I shared with you in my last post is excellent to learn from, and I found their study of knowledge, also pertinent to this topic. What and how can we know about God? Below is a link to their work on Epistemology –

    http://www.iep.utm.edu/epistemo/#H5

    We hope you are well,

    Dinos and Demetra

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