(Unedited & Unfiltered)
Is God in control? What is it that He is exactly controlling? Is He meticulously micromanaging all the minutia of the universe? People have been arguing this for centuries.
How do you describe the tension between free will and the hard determinism of western theological tradition? Is there a coherent argument?
I was recently listening to John Lennox debate Richard Dawkins on the subject and he says, “no!”
If God is control, some would say He isn’t exercising His Power in a coherent way. If it’s true that He isn’t in control, then the omni-attributes of God are essentially false and this conversation is a waste of time.
How does one make sense of all this? I choose to live by faith. Faith transcends the limits of logic and hopes against all hope. Faith is epistemic certainty (that’s what I propose). I know I’ve reduced the subject to a crass level representation, so please show me grace.
Doubt can feed faith, if we serve it up that way. Perhaps this is what the mystics knew? So much of what the mystics knew by faith eludes the academics, because it doesn’t add up. Not that theology has ever been philosophically coherent itself (in my opinion), until Jesus put a new face on God.
Jesus is pure theology. His faith in the Father’s plan gives me strength to believe in desperate circumstances. God can do anything, which encourages me. I believe. I’m thankful God supplies the faith He demands.
I know that people say that God is in control to assuage their grief and comfort themselves during moments of emotional duress. I get that. But I prefer to think that God is with us in our pain. I believe He walks with us to the very borders of our pain, and then helps us to cross over into the land healing and hope. There is a big difference between what God causes what God allows.
God never lost control, but I don’t think He’s been micromanaging the cosmos either. I’m grateful that He loves us and takes interest in our lives. I don’t pretend to understand the nuances of pain, suffering, and salvation. But I do know His Love and grace. That’ll do it for me.
I just have a lot a lot of pain in my life right now.
Oxford Professor John Lennox famously said this, “He who has a ‘why’ to live can bear almost any ‘how.’” I live because I love. I support my loved ones because they live. My why isn’t contingent on the how. Faith isn’t what we know, it’s who we know. I know Jesus.
I choose to trust and rest my faith in Him.
Thank you for your prayers.
Pastor Jeremy E.