Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Freewill and the Nature of God

When Adam and Eve were created in the garden, they were specially made by God. They alone are said to be formed by his action rather than his word, and alone were "in-spirited" by his breath. He got his hands dirty making man and preparing a place for them--for everything else mere words were sufficient. Only they were made in the image of God and became living souls. When God was finished creating them, his response elevated from the merely good to the very good.

It seems obvious to me, that God was creating companions for himself in Adam and Eve--folk who could relate to him on his level. Lest you think I'm wandering off into Mormonism, go to the source (Jesus) and see his actual vision for redeemed mankind. God may have built a park for us to live in, but he wasn't opening a zoo. He was building a pleasant place to fellowship with people.

So to understand the nature of man one must look to the nature of God. I think it impossible to view God as shackled, bound, conscripted in any way. He's nobody's puppet! He is the picture of freedom and freedom of will. This is the image in which he's built mankind. He called it good. God's desire as reflected in pristine creation, pronounced good by him who would know, is mankind not coerced, or oppressed, or forced to do, or to act, or to think in any certain way. God's not like that and he did not build man to be like that.

In the best condition that humans could be in God allowed them have free reign. It was what separated them from all else and made them true companions to God. They had to have such freedom, or they wouldn't be God-like, and could not fellowship with God at the level he wanted. However, being God, in all his perfections, they also could not hope to exert will in opposition to God. That is untenable, unsustainable and, well, just plain evil. Nonetheless, even at the best they would ever be, God did not coerce or make his will irresistable to them. Why would anyone expect him to change his mind now?