Hey everyone. I am debating a person on another website and they are saying that free will contradicts God’s omnipotence. How do I answer this? Here is what they said:
I get that this is how it is understood… I wasn’t so much questioning whether free will exists or not, but rather just saying that IF free will exists, God must not be omnipotent, omnisentient and omnipresent (in short, not all powerful)… such an all-powerful god could not limit itself to give free will. I argue this by saying that, by definition, in order to be “all powerful”, there is no limit to your being… everything is within your control, and in essence you the entirety of everything, all of it’s past, present and future. The only way for “free will” to exist is for such a being to limit its power somehow… which means that IF free will exists, then God must not be all-powerful.
In other words, I think the concept of “free will” gives us a small bit of insight into the nature of God. We cannot be both separate from God, and have God be all-powerful at the same time. We are either separate from a God that has limited power, or we are part of a God that is all-powerful. So I guess you can say I can agree with you about free will, but I was just taking things to the next step and seeing if we can understand something more about God because of this… just little philosophical debates that I like to bounce around in my mind. I like to believe the latter, actually, that God is all-powerful, and that we are all parts of him… manifestations of an eternal fight between “good” and “evil”, “Order” and “Chaos”, “Harmony” and “Discord”, “Construction” and “Deconstruction”, “Moral” and “Immoral”… all of which are synonymous in some way. Since the dawn of Religion, virtually all of them have grappled with these basic concepts, and I personally believe that they are all speaking to the same God, the same basic principles and the same basic ways of being. I believe that there is more than one path to the top of the mountain, and I also don’t believe that we have just one shot at life and it’s over (although we need may need believe that). I beleive as the Mormons once taught me, that the only way to go to “hell” is to know God and reject him, not just by making mistakes in life. Life is a lesson, not a trial in my mind. You are learning a lesson, and many… most even will fail that lesson, and THAT is not what sends you to hell. It is the rejection of the lesson and the principles that does that.
Anyway, I guess that’s just a big incoherent mess of my beliefs. I don’t really trouble myself with such concerns, though, since I don’t think I have to, it’s not my purpose at this time. My purpose is to learn a lesson, I can worry about the grander scheme in the after life.