Argument from the impossibility of perfect knowledge of the future and free will

by Matt Slick

Argument from the impossibility of perfect knowledge of the future and free will

  1. God has perfect knowledge of everything that he is going to do in the future.
  2. God cannot be wrong about his knowledge.
  3. God infallibly knows he will perform a certain act at a particular time.
  4. When that particular time arrives, God cannot choose to act differently.
  5. Therefore, God does not have free will.
  6. Therefore, the God of the Bible does not exist.

Refutation

  1. God has perfect knowledge of everything that he is going to do in the future.
  2. God cannot be wrong about his knowledge of the future.
  3. God infallibly knows he will perform a certain act at a particular time in the future.
  4. When that particular time arrives, God cannot choose to act differently.
    1. If God knows that he will perform a particular action, it is because he has freely chosen to perform that action based on his perfect knowledge. This necessarily means he has free will, which violates premise 5.
    2. When it is time to perform what has freely chosen to do, he will necessarily do it because that is what he has freely decided to do based on his perfect knowledge--which means he will not choose to do something different.
    3. If he had wanted to choose to do something different later on, he would have decided to do that in the first place; otherwise, he would not have perfect knowledge.
    4. So, the argument fails because it states that God has perfect knowledge (decides to do something) and also denies that God has perfect knowledge (decides to do something different later). Therefore, the argument is self-refuting.
  5. Therefore, God does not have free will.
  6. Therefore, the God of the Bible does not exist.

 

 

 

 
 
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