Do We Have Free Will or Is Everything Pre-Determined in Life?
Quick but difficult question, I think … Do we have a choice (free will) in this life or is everything determined by God ahead of time?
My friend, if I had a dollar for every time I had to hash through this in my mind or for someone else, I would be a millionaire. It’s a fantastic question, but one that is not easy to answer. I will answer it in my shortest possible way…
First of all, the Bible is not clear on the parameters of what God determines and what He allows us to sort through. So, everyone is merely guessing. They may use educated guesses, but God’s ways are higher than ours. From what I see, it’s a mixed bag.
There are some things that God determines (i.e. He wins over Satan; He will have a bride in the end, which is the church; Justice will happen), and some things that God allows mankind to alter and adjust (i.e. actions of sin, regular activity like moving our bodies, playing games, etc.).
It appears in the Bible that in the middle are places where God INFLUENCES. Influence is different than controlling or determining. Influence allows for free will but also helps to steer outcomes. I feel that much is in this category.
Is that all the answers? Nope. But it will get you started.
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