Monday, November 29, 2010

Ten Minutes and the Infinite Choice

For as long as theology has existed as a discipline (and probably longer), it seems that man has pondered about God and what he knows. God’s foreknowledge, providence, and sovereignty are unfathomable in entirety by finite beings such as you and I. How can the limited truly understand the illimitable? How can beings who cannot guarantee even one more moment of life uncover the eternal mysteries of God? The answers to these two questions cause us to tread forward humbly always accepting the impossibility of ever completely understanding God’s immanent work through metaphysical means on this side of the eschaton, while realizing the limits of our logic.

With this being said, let us begin discussing this quandary about the future. Let us assume that by “future” I am talking about one specific point ten minutes from now. What does God know about that point? More specifically, is there more than one point in that specific point in time? More simply, do multiple futures exist?

In each moment in time, I could make an almost infinite number of decisions. I could choose to look this way or that way or move in one specific direction or another. From this infinite number of decisions, I will make a certain number of decisions that lead up to that one specific point in time ten minutes from now. At that point in time, I will again be able to make a number of decisions. In the end, I will make one of the infinite decisions available to me at that moment.

Now, from God’s point of view at each point in time are an infinite number of decisions possible? After I have made a series of decisions over the period of ten minutes leading up to that point in the future how many decisions does God know to be available to me? Our first mistake is assuming that God experiences time as we know it. The truth is that God exists outside of time. As a result of this, God knows all choices past, present, and future, as if they have already occurred and are still occurring.

From our point of view, we have an infinite number of possible choices in each moment of time and yet in each moment of time the God outside of time has knowledge of only one of those choices. In every single moment of time, our infinite number of choices exists perfectly with God’s knowledge of the one certain choice. While the infinite number of choices really do exist as possible futures for us, only one of those choices exist as the certain future for God. Therefore, in every moment each of us makes the infinite choice: the one single choice among the infinite others that was certain before the foundations of the world!

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