The free will of Adam and Eve

I took this quote from the polygamy thread

Then I pose this question. Since you believe that God has all power and knowledge, could God have created a being that by their own free will obeyed him? Or did God have the knowledge to know that Adam was, with his free will going to disobey? Or when Adam disobeyed and his intent was to have obedient creations, then why did God allow mankind to continue? Surely a God who is all powerful and knowing and whose influence is felt everywhere could create the world of his intent?

Sure. That would be Mary, the Mother of God.

So you are saying that Mary was perfect? So there were two beings on earth that had reach perfection? Could you provide some reference to this?

It depends upon what you mean by “perfect”. She was all-holy, sinless, and the masterwork of creation.

She was, of course, the kecharitomene–full of grace. (See Luke 1)

Why are you asking this and not what the impossibility of it is for there to have been a literal Adam and Eve?

Go ahead though.

Actually, there are millions of beings on earth who are sinless, Fatboys.

After baptism, we are all sinless, “perfect”…until we sin. So that includes the millions of babies over the course of human existence, until they reached the age of reason.

Oh, and Adam and Eve were sinless, and “perfect”…until they sinned, as well.

Of course, but we can see in the world around us, and in ourselves, that God does not force us to love Him.

Or did God have the knowledge to know that Adam was, with his free will going to disobey?

Certainly.

Or when Adam disobeyed and his intent was to have obedient creations, then why did God allow mankind to continue?

Maybe it would help you to understand why God created us. Which is out of love, and God in return desires our love. Love cannot be forced, which is what forced obedience would be. A love that is forced is not love at all.

God gave us the gift of free will in order to love Him freely. Disobeying God is an abuse of the free will that we are gifted with.

The answer to the second part of your questions, why does God allow us to continue on? God is Love, and from God’s love flows His Mercy.

Surely a God who is all powerful and knowing and whose influence is felt everywhere could create the world of his intent?

Which, God did, and does. We are called to cooperate with God’s will, out of love for God. God does not force our love.

I agree. But if God is perfect and everything he creates is perfect, then why did Adam and Eve fall? Were they not perfect. God certainly cannot create imperection, or would he be still God.

Maybe it would help you to understand why God created us. Which is out of love, and God in return desires our love. Love cannot be forced, which is what forced obedience would be. A love that is forced is not love at all.

I’m not sure, but many mainstream Chrisitians believe that God’s intent was for this world to be perfect and that it was to be a wonderful place for his creations to live on. Also if this was his intent, did he know that Adam and Eve were going to partake of the fruit? If he did, either God knew that he could not create a perfect Adam and Eve that would use their free will to always obey him, or it was his plan all along that Adam and Eve fall? When Adam and Eve were created, why not destroy them and start over? I mean before there were any others that would have to go through mortality and fall. If God did that then there would not have been a need for a Messiah. Why is it that God loves us, but because we sin we shall be utter waste to God if we do not repent. At least there are mainstreams Christians that believe this. If we do not follow the Christ, why would a loving God condemn those to Hell forever and ever, when all he had to do was start over again. Does this make sense?

God gave us the gift of free will in order to love Him freely. Disobeying God is an abuse of the free will that we are gifted with.

I agree and thank goodness Jesus paid for those transgressions we make.

The answer to the second part of your questions, why does God allow us to continue on? God is Love, and from God’s love flows His Mercy.

Since you believe that our existance begin at conception, how do you feel God can truely love us when he does not even know us? Or are you saying it in general to the whole of mankind?

Which, God did, and does. We are called to cooperate with God’s will, out of love for God. God does not force our love.

I agree with that

You seem to not understand free will. Even if we were created perfect, we still had the potential to fall, and we did, because of temptation. Had there not been that temptation, I’m sure we’d all still be in the garden.

Again, you don’t seem to understand what free will is and how it works. You also seem to place God in a box as if he lives on Earth, which isn’t so far fetched regarding your beliefs on God. But if you look at God from our point of view, being all knowing, yes He knew Adam and Eve would fall, and in the same moment (if you could call it that), because He is outside of time, knew He would send Jesus for our salvation. God experiences all of time in a way we never will. He can experience all of time in an instant, or he can make a second last forever.

God does love us, even though we sin, but the sin is of our own doing. It is our choosing to disobey him. God will not force His love on us, nor will He force us to love him. God didn’t destroy Adam and Eve and all of creation and start over because He loves his creation. We need to repent because we are the ones at fault in our relationship, so we are the ones who need to mend it.

Again, you’re putting God into a box as if He is limited by time and space. The Bible even says that God knows us before we were “formed in the womb”, before conception. God knows us because He is not limited by time. For Him, a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like a day.

The following teachings are from the Catechism:

**302 Creation has its own goodness and proper perfection, but it did not spring forth complete from the hands of the Creator. The universe was created “in a state of journeying” (in statu viae) toward an ultimate perfection yet to be attained, to which God has destined it. We call “divine providence” the dispositions by which God guides his creation toward this perfection:
By his providence God protects and governs all things which he has made, “reaching mightily from one end of the earth to the other, and ordering all things well”. For “all are open and laid bare to his eyes”, even those things which are yet to come into existence through the free action of creatures.

310 But why did God not create a world so perfect that no evil could exist in it? With infinite power God could always create something better. But with infinite wisdom and goodness God freely willed to create a world “in a state of journeying” towards its ultimate perfection. In God’s plan this process of becoming involves the appearance of certain beings and the disappearance of others, the existence of the more perfect alongside the less perfect, both constructive and destructive forces of nature. With physical good there exists also physical evil as long as creation has not reached perfection.

412 But why did God not prevent the first man from sinning? St. Leo the Great responds, "Christ’s inexpressible grace gave us blessings better than those the demon’s envy had taken away."307 And St. Thomas Aquinas wrote, "There is nothing to prevent human nature’s being raised up to something greater, even after sin; God permits evil in order to draw forth some greater good. Thus St. Paul says, ‘Where sin increased, grace abounded all the more’; and the Exsultet sings, ‘O happy fault,. . . which gained for us so great a Redeemer!’"308

**

Everything God created was good. Not perfect.

From our Catechism.

But why did God not create a world so perfect that no evil could exist in it? With infinite power God could always create something better.But with infinite wisdom and goodness God freely willed to create a world “in a state of journeying” towards its ultimate perfection. In God’s plan this process of becoming involves the appearance of certain beings and the disappearance of others, the existence of the more perfect alongside the less perfect, both constructive and destructive forces of nature. With physical good there exists also physical evil as long as creation has not reached perfection. CCC310

Even if you were right, the mythic narrative of Scripture relies on the literal, literary structure of the text to make theological claims.

You seem to be using the word “perfect” in two different ways. Firstly, you use the term to refer to ontological perfection, that is, the perfection of the Perfect (for lack of a better term, God). Secondly, you use the word “perfect” to refer to the perfection of things according to their nature, that is, that they are they are the ideal examples of their thing-hood. In other words, perfection ascribed to God is of a different order than the type of perfection we ascribe to created things. Only God is perfect in the ultimate sense. People can only be “perfect” if they are fully human and unblemished in that. God is unlimited; created things are defined according to whatever category they are.

Yes. Genesis is a poem, not a science book.

I’m not in disagreement, but the discussion of whether Adam and Eve are historical misses the majority of why Christians read Genesis, hence why I tried to point out the folly of falling into the either historical or a-historical argument.

Just a general comment. I have had this conversation more times than I care to have and it is like playing a recording over and over again. The Mormon problem with the question of free will originates in the notion of pre-mortal existence. The Mormons do not receive the gift of free will from God, they possess it of their own accord because they too are eternal beings, existing apart from God. Thererfore God is not responsible for the evil one commits. That is their reasoning as I understand it (but I am open to correction here).

They cannot seem to grasp that we also believe God is not responsible for the evil one comitts, but for a different reason: We are created beings with a rational mind and the ability to make our own choices for which we alone are culpable. No matter how many times this is repeated, the same charge always leveled; it was God who screwed up in creating such evil beings to begin with. It is their belief that if ex nihlo creation is true then God is responsible for the evil in the world.

I’ll be very interested to see if this thread goes anywhere beyond this argument.

Really God can’t know and love people before they’re conceived?

They also frequently conflate free will with choice. Was it Parkerd who insisted one can’t really have free will unless one has lots of choices and that was why we find so many religious choices.

Not a Mormon god. The words omnipotent and omniscient are either absent from Mormon thought or are re-defined. They do not believe God can act outside of the laws of physical creation but rather that he is subject to them.

You are correct.

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