How must "freewill" work at the final judgement?


Since God has one, eternal, infinite, always in the present tense thought, He is eternally giving freewill to the angels and us. He can not take it away or force us to believe something or do something that violates our freewill; that is not what an infinitely good God does. God is infinitely powerful enough to have made freewill such that when the truly infinite graces needed for “us to be like Him because we see Him as He is” are given at the final judgement; our freewills will truly choose and it is still a freewill choice? Since all flesh shall see Jesus as He is at the last judgement and seeing the one whom they crucified their hearts shall be converted, CCC 1432, there are only three possibilities:

First: God took away their freewill---- which is not an acceptable choice because God is eternally giving us freewil.

Second: God violated their freewill------which is also not an acceptable choice because an infinitely good God does not violate anyone’s freewill

third: God created our freewills (and those of the angels because we both have the same ability to choose) such that when given truly infinite graces; our freewills still freely choose, **only there is no merit for our choosing as there is for us until the moment of death. **Should it be that big a deal to admit that God could create our freewills such? How else can God be in Christ reconciling all things be true and accomplished by God and still have the devils in hell after time ends other than they will be reconciled to Him and suffer for all eternity in a Christlike way; with peace, love, joy and thankfulness to go along with unimaginable sorrow for each and every sin ever committed?

It seems to me that those people who say “those in hell for ever and ever, will not be reconciled” have implicitly (maybe not intentionally) tried to get us to accept a God who either;
1 is not All-Loving-- because He never willed to make them Holy and therefore they could not will to be Holy and therefore He is not an infinitely good God. or
2 is not All-powerful because He willed to make them Holy, but He failed, He did not accomplish everything He set out to do.

What is wrong with saying "freewill is truly freewill at the final judgement, just there is no merit for us at that point"?


Hi Doug,

What is wrong with saying “freewill is truly freewill at the final judgement, just there is no merit for us at that point”?

I have read your post three times, and I am still not sure what you mean. You are right in saying that God cannot take away free will. But when we die, the free choices we ended up with are fixed once and for all. Not because we have lost our free will. But because the object of the will remains evil, the will cannot choose anything but evil. There is a finality in death that makes you you keep going in the direction you were headed, just like in space a missile will go for ever in the same direction. Here from St. Thomas Aquinas :

An obstinate will can never be inclined except to evil. Now men who are damned will be obstinate even as the demons [Cf. I, 64, 2]. Further, as the will of the damned is in relation to evil, so is the will of the blessed in regard to good. But the blessed never have an evil will. Neither therefore have the damned any good will.

Summa Theologica > Supplement > Question 98

Doug, all these discussions about free will are very difficult, including the relationship between free will and grace. Many good minds have concluded that we shall never really understand these problems fully in this lifetime. But we must retain that God HAS given us free will and that he cannot take it back, because free will is a prerogative of an intelligent being. This is also treated by St. Thomas



I apologize for not being clear in my post. When I read 2Cor. 5:19 “God was in Christ reconciling the world, (all things)”, I take it to be true and to show what God was intending to do, or what God was doing. Also, “God loves all that exists”, (Wis. 11:24) is also always and everywhere true. What is God’s Love? I am told it is God’s willing good for everyone, willing them to be good, willing them to be holy and doing everything possible to help them be good, to be holy. If God did not will someone to be Holy, He would not be an infinitely good God. Isaiah 53:11 " My word shall not return to me unfulfilled. It shall accomplish all that I intended." and CCC 275 “God can not be thwarted” are also both always and everywhere true.
So therefore I believe that God wills all to be Holy and intends to help them be holy. CCC 579, “Jesus Christ died for all sinners” to help them be Holy. Therefore He died for the sinners that will end up in Hell forever and ever. CCC 2637 " Indeed, in the work of salvation, Christ sets creation free from sin and death to consecrate it anew and make it return to the Father, for His glory." Since the devils are part of creation and also sinners; Does it not follow that Jesus wills them to be holy and they are part of the world that God is reconciling in Jesus? This is a work that God is doing, least we take any real pride in it. And if God is reconciling them to Himself, are you implying that God will not succeed?
As to your quote of St. Thomas: Do you agree with me that St. Thomas would be adament in quoting Jeremiah 17:5, “Cursed is the man who places their trust in human beings” and would He not agree that if anything he wrote lead someone to believe sacred scripture was in error, then their understanding, or what he wrote, was in error?
My opinion is, “If God intends to make all creation Holy, to renew all things; then that is what He is going to accomplish”. Do you agree? If your understanding of what the Church teaches leads you to conclude that God does not love the devils, or God will not succede in reconciling all things to Himself, is it possible your understanding is in error ?
CCC 393 can be understood inlight of Ez. 36:22, 25-27,32,37. “For them it is not given to repent” can also be seen to mean “for their sake” or “for their benefit” or "for their gain"
Do you believe God loves all that exists and wills all to be holy and God will accomplish all that He intends and therefore He willreconcile all things to Himself so that He will be all in all, everything to everyone 1Cor. 15:28?


Hi Doug, does Scripture say the devil and his angels will by cast into hell forever along with the cursed?
Then he shall say to them also that shall be on his left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels.


Absolutely!!! The devils will be cast into hell forever and ever and ever and ever. But Scripture makes no comment there as to whether or not the devils will be given the graces to repent, made holy. If all the teachings of the Church are correct and true when understood with the mind of God, our assignment is to try to understand them the way God wants us to, not the way the devil or the world does,and as I see all the evidense as cited above and so much more, we have to accept as true and accomplished 2Cor. 5:19, “God is in Christ reconciling all things” and therefore their “wailing and gnashing of teeth” must mean something along the lines of "their eternal suffering and blaming themselves, and only themselves, for the loss of the beatific vision and the infinite pain they are bearing in a Christlike way (the way Jesus did on the cross, really knowing every detail of everyone’s pain and suffering throughout all time and space), by God’s grace, inspite of themselves, praising God for His goodness. How else can it be true that God Loves all that exists and wills all to be Holy and Isaiah 55:11 "My word shall not return to me void. But shall do My will, achieving the end for which I sent it?

     If our understanding of Scripture and the teachings of the Catholic Church is such that God is not All-Loving or He fails to accomplish what He set out to do,(reconcile all things), then our understanding must be in error. Do you disagree?  

If you want, I have a long and more detailed attempt at understanding this in a copy of a letter in regards to the appointment of our next Bishop in Syracuse, New York, on my blogsite at;


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