Sunday, March 21, 2010

Clay IV.6

If we assert God's omnipotence, then we might suppose that God's full and present power was withdrawn from our territory as a result of God's own will, and that this withdrawal came upon the act of creating the man of free will. This withdrawal, in some respect, would then be simultaneous with the coming into being of the man of free will.

In other words, God's omnipotence is limited by his own will: it is an omnipotence that doesn't assert itself as the absolute director of events in the world.

This is one old solution to the problem, admittedly not a very satisfactory one. Another is to suppose that God is not omnipotent, but that the world is truly a battlefield between God and some other force or forces. A third solution is that offered by the Gnostics: namely, that the world was created not by the true God, but by a deficient being such as Yaldabaoth. A fourth solution, perhaps the most sophisticated, is offered by process theology.

In any event, the assertion that "the Lord works in mysterious ways"--meant to imply that the horrors of history are all somehow part of a loving God's plan--this is unacceptable if only because it refuses to pose the question.

No comments: