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Old 02-16-2001, 03:38 PM   #1
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Post Where did "free will" come from?

I'm sure the free will debate has been covered in this MB.

My question is: Where did Christians come up with the idea of God granting "free will"? All I see in the bible is "freewill offerings".

Is there Biblical justification for the free will defense?

If not, where did the idea come from? Were theologians just puzzled why "God" could "allow" so much suffering and were sick of saying "God works in mysterious ways"?
Old 02-19-2001, 05:54 PM   #2
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Let's see, since Christains claim that I have free will, I'm now going to command my heart to stop beating...

...damn, I'm still here. Perhaps we have "somewhat free will"?

Old 02-22-2001, 07:25 PM   #3
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"Free-will" is a term used to describe the choice God gave man.

Genesis 1:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die."

The choice is basically, you do what I say or you're going to die. Not much of a choice, but it is a choice rather than just being programmed to do what God said.

Old 02-22-2001, 11:36 PM   #4
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Do we have free will?

Or do we have freedom to choose?

The human mind is an individual's personal system of desires, fears and priorities.

Desire = Wanting a person/thing/event.
[NOTE: Evidence of a desire = Approach Behavior.]

Fear = Not-wanting a person/thing/event.
[NOTE: Evidence of a fear = Avoidance Behavior.]

Desires and fears are interrelated by being opposites. The opposite of the desire to live is the fear of dying (or of being dead).

Priority = The importance of each desire/fear compared to all other desires/fears.

The concept of free will may be misleading.

If we are comprised of atoms/molecules/etc. which have limitations we might not have free will but instead have predetermination. If we are predetermined, we become predictable. If you know my desires/fears/priorities, my current state of mind/body, and my environmental and mental options/choices/alternatives, then you might stand an excellent chance of predicting what I will do in the next few minutes.

What might be a better phrase to use/consider than free will is freedom to make a choice/freedom to choose.

If we have our limitations we may not have free will but nevertheless could have freedom to choose.

That freedom to choose means not having someone/something else dictate what my choices should be/have to be/must be/ought to be/etc.

If I have the following food priorities -

1. New England Style Fried Clams—fried in the stuff that will kill you, not the vegetable oil that kills the taste.
2. Lobster.
3. Steak.
4. Cheeseburgers.

— and I am hungry, then I may not have the free will I think I have when I choose fried clams, but what IS important is that I have the freedom to make the choice/freedom to chose and can therefore choose the fried clams.

The essence herein is the establishment of priorities. Once I have priorities I am limited in what I will choose. Priorities determine decisions. I cannot make decisions unless either I have priorities or I can find priorities among the choices I may have for alternative solutions to a problem. Once I have/find priorities among alternative solutions, I can make decisions, but the decisions are somewhat predetermined by the priorities. Who among us would intentionally choose a lesser priority alternative solution to a problem?

To a great extent, at least, we are our desires/fears/priorities, and once we have established our desires/fears/priorities, we become predictable, as if we have less free will, but, even with less free will we could still have the freedom to choose.

Bob K.

[This message has been edited by Bob K (edited February 23, 2001).]

[This message has been edited by Bob K (edited February 23, 2001).]

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