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Free Will as a Reason For God Allowing Evil?

(95 Posts)
headinhands Sun 22-Sep-13 09:00:13

I used to be a Christian but I can't remember how the free will argument actually works. As a human, if I could stop someone doing something awful to a child, I would. Furthermore, if I knew someone had witnessed a rape they could have stopped I wouldn't think that person had acted morally. I fully expect people to intervene where they can to prevent bad things happening. If they said 'I don't want to affect their free will' I would find that deeply offensive. How come Christians find this logic acceptable?

SadBadMadFat Sun 29-Sep-13 18:23:29

Op, I understand what you mean, I think the same way.

I believe in the Creator God, I believe in Jesus, the cross and resurrection, I am a Christian.
But a loving, just, Gracious God?

....I just don't get how so much crap is allowed to happen.

When I became born-again many moons ago, I was led to believe God was like Gandalf/Santa/Genie of the lamp and all my problems in childhood would go away and Id live happily ever after. I havent. Things got worse. Not by my free will either, by trying my best to live an honest Christian life.

I dont get why children have to suffer for the 'sins of their fathers' or whatever, I dont un derstand why God knew (just one example) the terrorists got on that plane and drove it into a building, a plane full of innocent families,a buil;ding full of workers). why didnt He strike the terrorists down or do a 'Damascus' on them?

and its okay to question all these things, after all God gave us a brain and an inquisitive mind.

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 14:29:28

Generally speaking I'm fascinated with the how and why of human's supernatural beliefs. I like to think that people who find robust examination of such won't be posting. I think this board is the perfect place to find such discussion as it's entirely up to the poster if they want to post. There are many threads in this section I wouldn't post in so I can distinguish between where it is and isn't proper for me to post. But on debate threads, yeah, I think that's pretty much what they're for.

ancientelm Sun 29-Sep-13 14:28:13

Didn't say it was wrong. Just curious as to whether the questioning has provided you with clarity, concerning your own beliefs / world view.

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 14:20:56

So the validity of my questions depend on my personal emotions? As I said at the start of the thread I seem to have forgotten the way I made Christianity work logically so find it interesting discussing it. No one has to engage, I wouldn't want anyone to join in unless they wanted to so don't see that I am doing anything dubious?

Is there something wrong with asking forthright questions? I find the notion that direct questioning is somehow wrong very interesting. Can you think why it might not be okay to ask questions and challenge the validity of the religious statements made on this thread?

ancientelm Sun 29-Sep-13 12:40:55

Are you happy headinhands?

I have seen a few threads where you tenaciously question Christians before. What are you hoping to find out?

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 12:18:37

Sorry, the one thing in common was that the person put effort into changing something. There's no evidence that those who made changes without the impetus of a religion somehow found it harder. You should take the credit for the good you have brought about in your life.

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 12:04:38

But lots of people say lots of different things help. The one thing they all have in common being that *

purpleink Sun 29-Sep-13 10:53:50

Never said non-Christians could not overcome personal problems. I have found being a Christian centres me, however. It has given me clarity. It helps me and a lot of others say it helps them too.

It is a choice.

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 10:36:22

Nobody is perfect that's for sure. Even Christians make mistakes though so there's nothing to suggest that being a Christian makes people any more perfect than anyone else. I've messed up but I try to learn from my mistakes so I don't make them again. I try not to hurt people because it makes me feel unhappy to see others unhappy. Overcoming personal problems isn't something only Christians do.

purpleink Sun 29-Sep-13 09:06:08

Chemical Addiction was just one analogy. I'm talking about being a 'Slave to sin'. Like, for example, in the play "Billy Liar" he couldn't stop lying. As for not needing Him I don't see many sinless people walking about...

headinhands Sun 29-Sep-13 08:51:48

What about the people who don't need him? Or the people who have him and still live with, and die with addiction? There are millions of people living their lives without Jesus and don't feel any need for him. I just don't see the out working of the claims you make about Jesus. Many people overcome addiction without Christianity.

purpleink Sat 28-Sep-13 21:04:22

Erm not's a process. You grow in knowledge and faith. You always need Him, that is the whole point.

headinhands Sat 28-Sep-13 21:01:20

So sometimes christ doesn't set you free even when you know him. And sometimes you don't even need him.

purpleink Sat 28-Sep-13 20:59:00

If you truly believe on Jesus you are Redeemed. Even if you are battling addictions.

headinhands Sat 28-Sep-13 20:57:00

So what about those who are Christians who have addictions? And those who aren't who have none? They're off to heaven anyway?

purpleink Sat 28-Sep-13 20:49:36

Because we choose it. We have Free Will. And also you can ask to be guided by the Holy Spirit and you can have Faith that you will be....

headinhands Sat 28-Sep-13 20:46:28

That'd be believable if there was a clear distinction between Christians and non-Christians but as far as I've known there isn't.

Why would a loving god (who wants us to be set free) allow us to be punished for being deceived?

purpleink Sat 28-Sep-13 19:16:02

I think you have to redefine freedom.

Christ sets you free.

Or you can be deceived by Satan and be 'slave to sin' which ultimately is a person's downfall, death.

The best analogy for being a slave to sin is addiction, which alters the mind and body so you are physically, virtually dependent to the addiction and trapped. But not quite because it can be overcome.

Christ offers freedom because you see the Truth, are not deceived and are not a 'slave to sin.

Two choices, that is all. 'Choose life'....

niminypiminy Mon 23-Sep-13 22:01:32

Thanks smile

Good night then niminy - hope you'll be finished with the work soon and can get some rest smile

niminypiminy Mon 23-Sep-13 21:50:29

Didn't mean to be dismissive -- am very weary and still working. But I don't think I have much to add when the debate gets to the level of 'all religions are made up to oppress the people'.

Didn't seem so to me niminy, but possibly it had run it's course.
Slightly surprised that's all.

niminypiminy Mon 23-Sep-13 21:35:29

Or perhaps not interested in the facile turn the discussion had taken?

No more takers ?
All out for 6 ?!

Yougotbale Mon 23-Sep-13 19:33:21

Jug - yes it's important to understand history, music, art, etc. so there is a place for religion and choice.
It's interesting to watch documentaries on tribes in the amazon (for example), that have had little or no contact with the outside world. They have not been exposed to any mainstream religions. They manufacture their own spirits and gods. Partly out of fear and partly out of wanting control within the tribe. It makes it clear how these stories can be made and believed.

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