1. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 17:195 edits
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this is a totally illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts else, by definition of “all-knowing” he is not “all-knowing"; -right?

    3, A “test” is, by definition, a deliberate action done to find out something that is not known before that action itself is carried out else it would not be a “test”; -right?

    4, But, we know from 2, that “God” must already know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts which therefore, from 3, means that any such so-called “test” by “God” is not a test by definition; -right? so "God" cannot "test" us?
    -unless it really is a “test” in which case “God” would be ignorant of the outcome of such a test in which case he is NOT all-knowing? ( which contradicts 1, )

    If anyone disagrees then I would like to know at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
  2. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:0211 edits
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this an illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts; -right?

    3, A “test” is, by definition, a deliberate action done to find know at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
    ==============================
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this an illogical claim for the following reasons:
    =============================


    I find that some skeptics exaggerate how "often" they supposedly heard something said.

    1.) How many times did you hear people say "God is testing us" ?

    2.) Who do you suppose they meant by "us" ?

    ===============================
    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts; -right?
    ================================


    I think a "test" could be not for the sake of One who is all-knowing. It is possible that the "test" could be for the one being tested to know.

    For example, a professor may know good and well that some self assured student really is not qualified to pass an examination. The "test" being given to that student may be for the the student's more realistic enlightenemt of the level of his preparedness.

    The purpose was to let the student see where he was, being previosly self assured in a foolish way. Of course the same could be true in a positive sense. That is to test the student who lacks confidence to realize that he actually can deliver.

    It is possible that a test of an all knowing God is designed not to enlighten God but to enlighten people.

    ====================================
    3, A “test” is, by definition, a deliberate action done to find out something that is not known before that action itself is carried out; -right?
    ======================================


    1. I don't know if that definition is right or not.

    2.) I don't know if the English word "test" is the best word translation, if and when such a concept was employed by God in the Bible.

    It would take some further research. I think I recall the word "try" or "trial" being used.


    ==========================================
    4, But, we know from 2, that “God” must already know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts which therefore, from 3, means that any such so-called “test” by “God” is not a test by definition; -right?
    =======================================


    Would it follow that a "test" given by a professor who knows pretty well the outcome of a student's preparedness is also not really a "test" ?

    =======================================
    -unless it really is a “test” in which case “God” would be ignorant of the outcome of such a test in which case he is NOT all knowing?
    ======================================


    Philosophers and theologians have discussed for hundreds of years "omniscience".

    In spite of the volumes that have discussed and debated the matter, I don't think it has been resolved. Not all theistic theological thinkers would insist that omniscience has to be an attribute of God.

    And whether or not "omniscience" of God is "predestination" has also not been conclusively resolved. But it has been argued much either way much.

    For all practical purposes if God knows the outcome of our choice, but we do not, is that really predestination ? I am not sure.

    At any rate, most of the time we mortals do not have a clue of the outcome even if God does. From our sense we have no feeling of being coerced.

    Think about it Mr. Hamilton. Do you feel anyone is coercing you to arrange careful arguments on the invalidity of theism ? I suspect you do not feel coerced or predestined at all. I suspect that your sensation is that you have pure freedom of will to think as you wish.

    I would like to ask former Atheist Anthony Flew. Does he feel predestinated and coerced to believe in a God now or did he feel coerced and predestinated to be an Athiest earlier?

    And if he should change and revert back to atheism, would he feel predestined or coerced to do so like some puppet whose strings are controlled by another.

    Anyway, if God is truly omsicient and knows what will take place throughout all eternity, I find it difficult to find ground for blaming Him for having this attribute.

    On what bases can I condemn an all knowing God with "Shame on You. You should not know everything !" ?

    And if God DOES know everything but you know that that is wrong that God should, what higher umpire or disciplinarian are you going to complain to that God should be disciplined? In that case that higher and more powerful and capable umpire must be God.

    What transcendent authority and power to God are you going to invoke to make God stop knowing everything ? Would it be a committee of muscular atheists ?

    I think a more reasonable approach to the problem is to have confidence that an ultimate Governor possesses ultimate goodness along with ultimate knowledge.

    It doesn't make sense to me that the creation of such a Being would be superior morally then that Being. How could God endow with that which is not in Himself to give ?

    To argue against God would be to argue against the One who gave you the ability to argue at all.

    Then maybe you take the approach that there is NO God. Then if you know that you could not scientifically demostrate it and violate your own complaint. For in your own words, what "test" could be designed in which the designer of the test knows the outcome?

    To be consistent to your own philosophy, you could not propose any "testable" approach to demonstrating the non-existence of God. Then scientific method would be of no use to you in verifying your atheism.

    We would just have to take your word on .... "faith", or something like it.

    So you can't know there is no God and design a "test" to prove it, by your own philosophy. So where does that leave us?

    I suppose you could propose a test and NOT know the outcome. In that case by your definition, your "test" is legitimate. However, in the process you would have to change your stance from an Atheist to an Agnostic.

    Are you willing to make that concession ?

    See what an enfluence you have been on me Mr. Hamilton? Now wouldn't you much rather prefer that I go back to mere bible thumping ?

    How's classes going, by the way?
  3. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:34
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this is a totally illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts else, by definition of “all-knowing” he is not “all-knowing"; -rig ...[text shortened]... now at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
    I'm curious as to why you think God tests us? I can't seem to remember any scriptures that ever says that he does that to humans other then Adam & Eve who were perfect...
  4. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    10 Aug '10 18:35
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this is a totally illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts else, by definition of “all-knowing” he is not “all-knowing"; -rig ...[text shortened]... now at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
    Interesting thread topic, Andrew. One dimension of the vertical reconciliation of mankind

    (an individual at a time) to ponder is His respect for positive and negative human volition.



    ............................................................................
  5. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:36
    Originally posted by galveston75
    I'm curious as to why you think God tests us? I can't seem to remember any scriptures that ever says that he does that to humans other then Adam & Eve who were perfect...
    probably Job would be the best place in Scripture to see if the concept of God testing someone is there.
  6. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:40
    Originally posted by galveston75
    I'm curious as to why you think God tests us? I can't seem to remember any scriptures that ever says that he does that to humans other then Adam & Eve who were perfect...
    Adam and Ever were not perfect. And that god knew. They failed the test, remember? All according to the legend...
  7. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:421 edit
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this is a totally illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts else, by definition of “all-knowing” he is not “all-knowing"; -rig now at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
    When you take a test who is the benefactor? Is it the teacher? After all, the teacher knows all the answers. In addtion, they probably have a good idea as to whether or not you know the answers based upon previous conversations. The question is, how can we show you what you really know or do not know?
  8. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:431 edit
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    “God is testing us”

    I have often heard people say the above but I think this is a totally illogical claim for the following reasons:

    1, “God” is supposed to be all-knowing; -right?

    2, if “God” is all-knowing then he must know the outcome of any “test” before the test starts else, by definition of “all-knowing” he is not “all-knowing"; -rig now at what point ( 1, or 2, or 3, or 4, ) you disagree and what is your counter argument.
    I'm not so sure this is such a big problem for a theist who, say, holds to a libertarian account of human freedom. A theist could hold that God is all-knowing in the sense that He knows all that can be known. But at the same time, they could hold that, say, not all propositions regarding future human actions have determinate truth values or are knowable. (Thus they might deny your premise 2.) And if you think about it, this would seem to tie in okay with a libertarian construal of human freedom because under such a construal it seems that no set of antecedents is sufficient to elicit a "free" choice. In that case, perhaps there is no accounting for supposedly "free" willings before the fact. In that case, the outcomes of tests regarding human performance may be in certain cases unkowable before the fact. In my opinion, this response carries some major problems, as does libertarianism itself; but my point is that this is how I might expect such a theist to respond.

    I think this also ties in intuitively to the sort of "Leibniz's Lapse" idea regarding limits on God's influence of future affairs. The idea is that there are possible worlds that even an omnipotent god cannot just bring about. For instance, if libertarian freedom holds, then the outcome of putatively free actions are not something withing God's direct control. The most He could do, perhaps, in certain cases is provide for a person's being free; but not directly provide for the actual content of the person's free willings. You could imagine a similar argument or intuition for the case of knowledge regarding testing outcomes. God can provide for the test, but if libertarian freedom holds, then there may be no direct accounting for the outcome before the fact for tests regarding human action.

    For disclosure, I think libertarianism is nonsense, and I think some form of compatibilism instead holds. Under a compatibilist framework, your argument probably carries more force. But under a libertarian framework, I do not yet see how it would be very forceful.
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    10 Aug '10 18:44
    Originally posted by FabianFnas
    Adam and Ever were not perfect. And that god knew. They failed the test, remember? All according to the legend...
    They were perfect in the sense that they knew no sin. They were imperfect in that they did not know everything. This is why faith is so vital. It is the necessary relationship between an infinite God and finite man.
  10. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:491 edit
    erased
  11. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:50
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    I'm not so sure this is such a big problem for a theist who, say, holds to a libertarian account of human freedom. A theist could hold that God is all-knowing in the sense that He knows all that can be known. But at the same time, they could hold that, say, not all propositions regarding future human actions have determinate truth values or are knowable ...[text shortened]... But under a libertarian framework, I do not yet see how it would be very forceful.
    If God is all knowing and all powerful, can he choose at some point not to know an outcome? For example, could God begin creation without wanting to know the end details only to then see them once it had been sprung into existence?
  12. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:531 edit
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    I'm not so sure this is such a big problem for a theist who, say, holds to a libertarian account of human freedom. A theist could hold that God is all-knowing in the sense that He knows all that can be known. But at the same time, they could hold that, say, not all propositions regarding future human actions have determinate truth values or are knowable But under a libertarian framework, I do not yet see how it would be very forceful.
    I don't know much about theological "libertarianism".

    I never heard of it. At first glance, politically at least, a libertarian is a conservative who wants to get away from the label "conservative".

    Like a progressive is a liberal who wants to get away from the stigma of being labelled "liberal".
  13. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 18:552 edits
    Originally posted by whodey
    They were perfect in the sense that they knew no sin. They were imperfect in that they did not know everything. This is why faith is so vital. It is the necessary relationship between an infinite God and finite man.
    But they failed the test, didn't they?
    There was a reason, of course, but on the test god set up for them, they failed.
    And god knew this in advance.
    ...all according to the legend.
  14. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 19:05
    Originally posted by FabianFnas
    Adam and Ever were not perfect. And that god knew. They failed the test, remember? All according to the legend...
    Adam and Eve were:

    1.) Neutral between God's way and any other way. That is until their choice was made in which they moved out of the neutral stage and took sides.

    2.) Not capable of knowing good and evil by themselves. Such knowledge had to be derived directly from God. That is until they aquired that ability to know good and evil.

    3.) Innocent - God did not create them sinful.
  15. Joined
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    10 Aug '10 19:17
    Originally posted by whodey
    If God is all knowing and all powerful, can he choose at some point not to know an outcome? For example, could God begin creation without wanting to know the end details only to then see them once it had been sprung into existence?
    If God were to not know a knowable outcome, you could not say that God is all-knowing in the sense of knowing all there is to know. But presumably you could still say He is "all-knowing" in the sense that He has the capacity for knowing all there is to know, even if this capacity is for whatever reason not being fully exercised (in this case, I guess, by choice). So, if you're okay with this concession, then yes I think this another way you could respond.
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