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One on One: AMR and JCWR on the Temporality of God - December 21st, 2008, 04:22 PM

Just wanted to get this thread activated. AMR and I have agreed that I will make the first post on the topic.

My post will appear in a few hours.

I hope everyone enjoys the debate!

Will there be a discussion thread for this debate, Knight?

JCWR





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December 21st, 2008, 05:18 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCWR View Post
Just wanted to get this thread activated. AMR and I have agreed that I will make the first post on the topic.

My post will appear in a few hours.

I hope everyone enjoys the debate!

Will there be a discussion thread for this debate, Knight?

JCWR
Sure.





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December 21st, 2008, 05:22 PM

Feel free to discuss this One on One thread here.





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December 21st, 2008, 08:53 PM

Greetings everyone, I am Paul (JCWR) and will be debating the B-theory of time with AMR. I want thank AMR for agreeing to this one on one debate. I know he is a busy man and that he is not usually willing to debate just anyone. I guess I will consider myself lucky….for now that is!

In this post, I will only introduce myself and briefly state my opening position, and goals for this debate.

A little about myself for anyone who may be interested: I was raised in a home where my Father spoke Hebrew and my Mother Greek. I am a native Greek speaker and have a fair understanding of Hebrew. I am a master’s level seminary graduate and live in Knightsbridge, England. This means my posts will probably come at very odd hours compared to the U.S. time zones. I apologize in advance for any inconvenience this may be for others. My written English is much better than my spoken English. I may mangle some of the mother tongue; again I apologize in advance for this.

Doctrinally, I am not a Calvinist. Nor am I an open theist, but I am studying it to learn more. I am probably what Calvinists call humorously, a confused Arminian. I believe that this debate is important to open theist, because I believe that if God is not temporal then its views on free will and the future are in trouble. I am sure that AMR will be making all these points, too, given his public position on Arminianism and open theism. But, it is my intent to show that God is in fact temporal and that the future is not possible for God to know. I will also show that there is much consensus supporting the A-theory, the Bible presents God as a temporal being, a timeless God is an incoherent idea, and that atemporality is a Greek philosophical idea no longer worthy of consideration.

So what exactly is the A-theory of time?

The A-theory of time is a view is that time is tensed, it is a definition of time that is dynamic. A-theorists believe that time can be viewed as past, present, and future. A-theorists also believe that past and future only mean something when related to the present and that the past and future are not accessible.

I believe our common experience lends itself to the A-theory approach. I have not found the bible to make an explicit statement on whether God is temporal (my position) or atemporal (AMR’s position). We find in the Bible that God is presented as genuinely interacting with persons in a relational and temporal manner. As we will see later in our debate, there is no just reason to anthropomorphize many passages from the Bible that support the A-theory when these passages are read in a straight forward manner.

It is very early in the morning here now, so this will conclude my opening post.


EDIT: Sorry, it was nearly 4AM here when I posted this and I had confused my A and B theories. I made the corrections above. Be merciful, AMR!





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godrulz lacks credibility: he merely asserts, never defends, remaining entrenched in another gospel.

Last edited by JCWR; December 21st, 2008 at 10:02 PM.. Reason: I had my A-theory and B-theory confused
   
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December 21st, 2008, 11:20 PM

Not to worry, JCWR. In our PMs I let your confusion go without pointing them out and just figured I would hold them up to ridicule here. While I am disappointed you robbed me of the chance to do so, I am happy to see you saw the error and corrected it. Would have been a very short debate otherwise, no?

Besides, anyone with a wonderful sig like yours gets some special consideration in my book. But you have now used up your allotment.

So to be clear, I (AMR) am representing the view that God is atemporal, wherein the concept of time is tenseless. By tense here I mean as in the English when we say "past", "present", and "future", which I will argue is meaningless to an eternal God, and that time is more properly categorized as earlier than, simultaneous, or later than.

My full post will appear in a few hours. Watch this space.





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December 22nd, 2008, 02:13 AM

JCWR writes:

Quote:
it is my intent to show that God is in fact temporal and that the future is not possible for God to know. I will also show that there is much consensus supporting the A-theory, the Bible presents God as a temporal being, a timeless God is an incoherent idea, and that atemporality is a Greek philosophical idea no longer worthy of consideration.
I am looking forward to your making a case for these claims and hope you will begin to do so in your next post. As things stand, I am wondering if you have a full grasp of the topic we are discussing, for it is a vital one, especially as relates to open theism—a topic you seem interested in and open to considering.

JCWR-1: Which of the following describes your view of God’s temporality?

1. Sempitemporality (sempiternality) – everlasting God, experiencing succession just as creation does, with time as uncreated

2. Pantemporality – God not controlled or ruled by time, but experiences time. Process theology assumes this view, where time is some extension of the being of God


A great deal of process theology has been appropriated by open theism, or free will theism. The openist will claim they are very different from process theism, but anyone who looks closely will see plenty of similarities, and thus be suspicious of these claims. The prevailing attitude of tolerance for just about any sort of belief system has allowed these claims to go unchallenged, resulting in a great deal of confusion about the attributes of God. God’s attributes have been declared redundant in some cases or even misleading. In this debate I am going to look at one of God’s attributes, His eternality (timelessness). We will examine whether or not we should reaffirm this attribute, or as JCWR seeks to do, redefine it. Clearly I seek to show that God’s timelessness must be reaffirmed and thus belief systems such as open theism are outside the bounds of orthodoxy.

I am a classical theist, in that I believe in some key core attributes of God: impassibility, simplicity, timelessness, immutability, necessity, pure actuality, omniscience, and omnipotence. Process theology and open theism make no bones about wanting to alter the concepts of timelessness, omniscience, and immutability. As a classical theist, I hold that all of God’s essential attributes are interdependent logically and that a denial of even one attribute is a denial of the existence of God Himself. For me, God’s timelessness is an essential truth, intuitively known to man, and is independent of any special revelation from God. General revelation is sufficient for man to know that God exists. Further I hold that God is identical with His attributes, and each attribute entails every other attribute. (See a more complete discussion of the attributes of God in my 1:1 debate with Bob Enyart here:
http://www.theologyonline.com/forums...12&postcount=5)

Therefore, if we forfeit any of the divine perfections, we logically erase God. There are no contingent attributes of God, such as timeless eternity. For God to have temporal duration, He would not be God. The openist would have us believe that God’s knowledge is limited to the present and the past, thus hoping to redefine the very word omniscience. The openist would also have us believe that God’s power is limited, since He cannot know the future and has no accessibility to the past (JCWR’s self-described A-theory of time).

This openist idea of God’s limited knowledge has been stated by Pinnock: God experiences temporal passage, learns new facts when they occur and changes plans in response to what humans do.

To this I would only observe, that knowledge without power is weak, and power without knowledge is dangerous.

But rather than argue with the open theist’s conceptualizations of God’s omniscience, immutability, and impassibility so that the openist can deal with God’s timelessness, I am going to surprise everyone by granting them for the purposes of this debate! In other words I will assume the openist view on these attributes is correct, but will demonstrate how that view cannot possibly stand. I am going to demonstrate that the eternality of God can be entailed with no appeal being made to my classical theist views of these attributes (omniscience, immutability, impassibility). By so doing, then, it necessarily must follow that open theism fails in all its conceptualizations of the nature of God.

JCWR-2: Do you agree that if I am able to demonstrate without appeal to the attributes of omniscience, immutability, and impassibility that God is eternally timeless, then open theism has failed in all formulations of God?





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December 22nd, 2008, 03:01 AM

AMR,

I am off to work now and will respond more fully later this evening. Here are the answers to your two questions however.

Quote:
JCWR-1: Which of the following describes your view of God’s temporality?1. Sempitemporality (sempiternality) – everlasting God, experiencing success just as creation does, with time as uncreated 2. Pantemporality – God not controlled or ruled by time, but experiences time. Process theology assumes this view, where time is some extension of the being of God
From your descriptions I would have to say that I am a sempiternalitist.

Quote:
JCWR-2: Do you agree that if I am able to demonstrate without appeal to the attributes of omniscience, immutability, and impassibility that God is eternally timeless, then open theism has failed in all formulations of God?
Yes, I believe that if you can make your case without appeal to these attributes, then you have made the case that open theism has incorrectly formulated its views of God.





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December 22nd, 2008, 10:47 PM

AMR,

Thanks for waiting for my complete post before continuing the discussion.

Now for some of my arguments. I believe a straightforward reading of numerous passages of the Bible presents a view of God as temporal.

For example, in Genesis 1:1 and John 1:1 we read about the beginning of creation. These texts speak about the beginning, which clearly implies a start of something. For something to start, or begin, implies that time as we understand it includes God’s acting within it, within its temporality.

We also read in John 8:58, Jesus claims, “I AM”. If Jesus is God and man, then God exists in the time (He is) that Jesus existed in while he was alive.

Revelation 13:8 reinforces the above claim I make above using John 8:58, for the world exists in time.

I believe there is a wide consensus today that God exists in time. Nearly all philosophers of religion affirm the temporality of God. The theologian John Feinberg agrees that God is fully temporal. I will omit naming the open theist theologians, as I assume you would agree to their position a priori.

I believe that the notion of an atemporal God is evidence of Greek influence on Christian theology.The idea of an unmoved God has its origins in Aristotlean thinking and Neo-Platonism. Do you agree with this statement, AMR?

I believe the concepts of a timeless God are incoherent. A timeless God cannot be omniscient. If God is timeless, God cannot know common things that His creatures know. God could not know what time it is! If God is timeless He cannot interact with people existing in time, or even respond to them. As Feinberg has argued, if God is atemporal, every moment is simultaneously present to him, and therefore, every moment in time is simultaneous with every other moment in time. This is an absurdity.

If God is atemporal, how can He do the things we expect a person to do? After all the personhood of God is not in question, so how does an atemporal God think, remember things, respond to others, or even deliberate?





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December 22nd, 2008, 10:53 PM

JCWR,

Just wanted to acknowledge your most recent two posts. I will respond to them shortly. I have to say that I expected more substantive content to support your "I believe" statements above. You have left yourself vulnerable. It appears that you have laid out all of your opening statement goals.

AMR





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December 22nd, 2008, 10:55 PM

AMR,

I think I have adequately made my case and unless you are able to refute my arguments, then it looks like I have won this debate with you.

JCWR





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December 22nd, 2008, 10:59 PM

Sigh.:squint:

Given that you have agreed to my earlier question, JCWR-2, the next post or two from me (so I can break up some their lengths) should compel a concession, that is, unless you intend to go back on your assent to the question as I posed it.

AMR





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December 22nd, 2008, 11:03 PM

I have no intentions on retracting my agreement to your question. I just don't think you can make your case. If you do, sir, I will gladly give you kudos. Good luck with that!

I have to go to work now, so I will read your responses later this evening (my time).

JCWR





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December 24th, 2008, 12:54 AM

JCWR writes:
Quote:
I believe a straightforward reading of numerous passages of the Bible presents a view of God as temporal.
As a classical theist, I agree with the long standing position of the church and the Reformers that God is outside of time, and is timeless. This does not mean that God is excluded from time, only that He is unaffected and unrestricted by time. Time came into existence at the beginning of creation. Moreover, God has equal access to all time, just as God has access to all space. Only from this view of time is God’s transcendence magnified.

For the classical theist, all categories of time (earlier than, simultaneous, and later than) are ontologically privileged, and therefore accessible to atemporal God. What we call the present is simply a recognition of the chronological reality we refer to as time.

Your sempitemporal view, JCWR, reduces God from a strongly infinite being to one only moderately infinite. Your view throws open the door to the open theist for a God with has no knowledge of the future. Your view is at odds with two thousand years of church tradition, aligns with libertarian free will (the liberty of indifference), and requires strainings and awkward handling of many reflective passages of Scripture. For more discussion on the issue of libertarian free will see here.

You have argued that plain readings of Scripture support your position. You further argue that these plain readings should not be anthropomorphized without just cause. Yet you offer nothing to support what exactly just cause means, apparently preferring to leave that burden on the interpreter’s abilities.

The more responsible standard is for one to be honestly open as to how these texts are accepted. The guidelines for interpretation are different for each genre used in Scripture. A proper hermeneutic rejects any principles of interpretation that privilege the meaning of any passage of Scripture indiscriminately. Scripture was written for man to understand and, thus, must be viewed as an accommodation to man’s weakness. God’s revealing of His will must be an accommodation of Himself to man’s spatiotemporal existence through the use of figurative, anthropomorphic, sensory language about Himself, and in particular by the use of the language of change. It is a logically necessary condition of God’s dialogue with his creatures that the divine dialogue partner must recognize that such creatures must act and react in time. At this point then, you may ask, How can God talk like He is in time while all the while being outside of time? The answer is that God can talk like He is in time as long as the person with whom God is dialoging is fully aware that he is talking to God.

Let’s examine the passages you quote a bit more carefully.

Genesis 1:1 very clearly implies a starting point to all created things. Time begins at Genesis 1:1. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth is the absolute beginning, that when combined with And there was evening and there was morning, one day indicating the first day, teaches that the beginning was not merely the beginning of the physical world but the beginning of time itself, and that, consequently God may be thought of as timeless. To reject the idea that time has a beginning forces one to explain an actual infinity. That is, if God existed for an infinite number of moments prior to actual creation, then, in fact, creation has not yet occurred.

I think you have missed some of the meanings of John 8:58 and Revelation 13:8.

In John 8:58, one would normally expect Jesus to say, Before Abraham was, I was. But instead, he says, Before Abraham was, I am. The Jews wanted to know how Jesus could claim to know Abraham personally. They were asking about Jesus’ age. The answer Jesus gave indisputably places him in a different relationship to time than that of the audience. The meaning was clearly understood by the audience, in that they recognized Jesus’ claim to deity, but not because of some sacred words, but because the claim He was making only God could make: that He is outside of time. In this passage we find Jesus Christ deliberately picking up the present and putting it back before Abraham, yet still referring to that distant time period in the present tense. For Christ, it was now, though it was centuries ago. Because Jesus is God and with God there is no passage of time, all is present equally vividly.

In Revelation 13:8 the lamb slain from the foundation of the world is another case (as in John 8:58) of temporal inversion.

This phrase, from the foundation of the world occurs ten times in the New Testament. In these apo is used seven times and prov three times. Both are generally considered to be synonymous and given that the prepositions have wide semantic range, it seems that the more dominant idea is from versus before creation. This would support a timeless perspective since there was no before (a temporal term) before creation.

If I were to adopt your straightforward method, the timing of the execution here was simultaneous with creation. Yet, the text is virtually universally understood to mean that Christ’s crucifixion was planned, but not executed from the foundation of the world. I doubt you would disagree with this statement. Yet, any temporalist who agrees with this is doing exactly what they object to in narrative Scripture passages, in that they are understanding the text of Rev. 13:8 analogously!

JCWR, you have ignored other Scriptures related to God’s timelessness.

In 2 Peter 3:8 and Psalm 90:4, the literal meaning of these passages is clear: time is of no significance to God. The But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day of 2 Peter 3:8 cannot mean time is passing slower or faster, since either extreme is avowed. Instead, the truth generally underlying both is that measures of time are relative to man, yet to atemporal God, omnipresent in time as in space, all times are equally near. The For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it passes by, Or as a watch in the night. of Psalm 90:4 is even clearer on this point, as exemplified by Fruchtenbaum’s exposition:
“In verse four, Moses again focuses on God’s timelessness. His point is that time has no meaning with God. To illustrate that point rather graphically, he says, For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past. What is a thousand years in God’s sight? Moses uses two phrases to describe what a thousand years is in God’s sight. The first phrase is, but as yesterday when it is past. In other words, a thousand years with God is like only a night in the life of man. It is not even a full 24-hour day, only a 12-hour night. The first comparison he makes, then, is that a thousand years—a very long period from man’s perspective—is to God merely about 12 hours. Moses then points out that 12 hours is even a bit too long, and the second phrase he uses to make his point is, as a watch in the night. In Moses’ time, the night was divided into three watches; in comparison to God’s eternity, man’s life is only one watch out of three, only a part of the night. Thus, the Psalmist reduces the thousand years of God to only four hours of human life. What is a thousand years with God? Merely four hours of human life! However, Moses goes further, emphasizing that this is not four hours of the day, but four hours of the night. It is four hours of the night of which the sleeper takes no reckoning, four hours that have vanished upon the sleeper’s awakening. This is the time that people sleep, and people do not reckon time while they are sleeping. While we are fast asleep, there is, in fact, no awareness of the passing of minutes and hours.” Source: Arnold Fruchtenbaum, “Psalm 90: An Exposition,” Chafer Theological Seminary Journal 4 (1998):3-4
I also point you to Jude 25; Titus 1:2; 2 Timothy 1:9. The passage from Jude reads, to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. Now if there was a before all time and if we all agree that God is without beginning, then God must have existed prior to time—therefore God must be outside of time. In Titus 1:2 we read in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago and in 2 Tim 1:9 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity—both of which make similar statements.

In Ecclesiastes 3:14-15, we read: I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him. That which is has been already and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by.

It should be obvious from the passage that God has a very different relationship to time than do His creatures. The passage has to do with God’s plans and purposes. God here is portrayed as not only the creator of the universe but also the creator (the author) of history itself. These verses clearly claim that in the past the future already existed for God.

In my next post I will discuss your second claim related to the consensus today of God and time.





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December 24th, 2008, 01:17 AM

JCWR writes:
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I believe there is a wide consensus today that God exists in time.
I will grant you that this does seem to be the position by the majority of modern philosophers of religion. But your argument weakens considerably when taken in a broader context. There is two thousand years of church history among systematic theologians that has taken the atemporal position of God. From the orthodox church view, temporality is an anomaly, not a consensus! For example, Grudem, Ryrie, Erickson, Chafer, are all atemporalists. You mentioned John Feinberg, who seems to be the only non-open theist systematic theologian today who is a temporalist. I will discuss his perspective in a later post.

It stands to reason that the philosopher of religion would support temporality given that these individuals to a man, are libertarian free will proponents. Consider their discipline—philosophy—and it should be clear that they would be predisposed to autonomous human reason. In fact, if these philosophers and other proponents of libertarianism were to deny its existence, then all their considerations favor atemporality.

I think this is important to point out given your assertion, which I will discuss in my next post, to discredit atemporality by associating it with Greek philosophy.





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December 24th, 2008, 02:03 AM

JCWR writes:
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I believe that the notion of an atemporal God is evidence of Greek influence on Christian theology.
Open theists and others supporting libertarian free will frequently like to use historical arguments in attempts to undermine classical theism, arguing that classical theism depends upon Greek philosophical traditions that have somehow undermined what only the openist thinks about the doctrine of God they have crafted.

This is what is so ironic about Open Theism, in that openism decries the supposed influence of the Greeks, yet builds its theology atop the same philosophies, such as the assumed, but never proven, OT philosophical assumption that determination erases relationship.

Openist Pinnock states that Augustine allowed neo-Platonic ideas to influence his interpretation that put God in “a kind of box” (see Pinnock’s Most Moved Mover). Boyd writes that classical theism became misguided “under the influence of Hellenic philosophy” (see Boyd’s The God of the Possible). Finally, Sanders writes that “Greek thought” and “neo-Platonic metaphysics” were a significant influence on the classical doctrine of God (see Sanders’ The Openness of God). Sanders even lumps Luther and Calvin into the camp of neo-Platonic influence that continues to “dominate conservative theology”.


Thus, with a few swipes at the Greeks and the reformers, the doctrines of God’s immutability, impassibility, and timelessness are declared paganism by the openist trinity of Pinnock, Boyd, and Sanders (PBS). Unfortunately, a good deal of those outside of any serious theological forum making these same claims have not spent any significant time studying theological history or philosophy. Instead they merely parrot what they have seen elsewhere (in the texts of PBS) as if saying something more shrilly and loudly will make it so.

Yet, in the next breath openist Sanders writes that, “Philosophical theology can lend clarity to concepts about the divine nature of providence that can be useful to biblical scholars” (See Sanders’ The God Who Risks). In fact, the Greeks, Epicurus, and his follower, Lucretius, spent lots of time dealing with the kind of freedom openists would like to claim--libertarian free will. This tells me openists clearly don’t appreciate the Aristotelian influence on the limited divine foreknowledge open theism claims. Aristotle’s views on the truth-value of future-tense statements is the philosophical basis for the openist’s views of God’s omniscience (see De Interpretatione, Ch. 9).

But, what of these claims? A closer look reveals something very different.


No one will dispute that the early Church theologians read the Greek philosopher’s and even used Greek terms to communicate biblical truths efficiently to their generation. What is significantly overlooked by openists is that these early church theologians transformed the meanings and contents of the terms they used so as to be faithful to the truths of Scripture. I’ll say more about this below, but for those seeking to truly learn about the doctrines of God and Greek thought, see John Piper’s Beyond the Bounds, Gerald Bray’s The Personal God, and Millard Erickson’s God the Father Almighty: A Contemporary Exploration of the Divine Attributes. Moreover, rabbinic authorities confirm that the attributes of God in Judaism have been developed from the bible and not Greek thought. See D.G. Montefiore’s A Rabbinic Anthology.

Orthodox Christian doctrine history also denies the notion of openists that classical theism is a pagan mixture. Even Boyd writes that the history of orthodox Christian doctrine has always been on the side of classical theism, concluding “I must concede that the open view has been relatively rare in church history” (see The God of the Possible, pg. 115). Such a perspective is in keeping with the Church fathers, Luther, Calvin, Melancthon, the Puritans, as well as Spurgeon, Edwards, and Hodge, all of whom confirmed the classical doctrine as God’s deposited truth.

As noted above, some openists will trot out their barbs about Augustine’s or Aquinas’ influence by the Greeks in the development of theology. That is about the extent of what they can say, since very few have studied these theologians or Greek philosophers carefully and formally. There is no disputing that Augustine owed much to Platonic thinking. In fact, it was his studies of Plato and Plotinus that led Augustine to his conversion to Christianity. The more Augustine read these thinkers the more Augustine realized that the whole of Greek thought had to be recast within the light of the Scriptures.


Likewise, Aquinas spent much of his free time in 1268 and the next five years writing commentaries about Aristotle. These were not the tasks of a Dominican theologian, which he was at the time and they were not written to twist the texts of Aristotle into a Christian purpose. It was afterwards, when Aquinas had more fully developed understandings of the Greeks, that he began composing his “errors of Aristotle”. Few persons who have not formally studied Aquinas realize that in all his thinking, Aquinas held to the intellectual policy that a genuine conflict between what the human mind can know and the truths of the Christian faith can never arise. There are many seeming conflicts, as Aquinas’ “errors of Aristotle” plainly showed.

The fact is that the openist’s charges against classical theism are not new. In fact they are a repetition of liberal theology. Openists are parroting the liberal theologians of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These claims are German originated during the nineteenth century, and were connected to Ferdinand Christian Baur (1869) and August Neander (1850). They were picked up later by Albrecht Ritschl (1889). The exposition of these claims that resurrected them all over again came from Alfred (Adolph) von Harnack (1930) published as “What is Christianity?” Walter Bauer (1960) further developed Harnack’s thesis.

For example, openists will frequently mock the classical theist’s doctrine of the immutability of God as being wholly derived from the Greeks. But what is the real truth of the matter? In Greek thought immutability of “god” meant not only unchangeability but also the ability to be affected by anything in any way, i.e., the unmoved mover. The Greek word for this primary characteristic of “god” was apatheia, from which we get our word “apathy”. Apathy means indifference, but the Greek term goes far beyond that idea. It means the inability to feel any emotion whatsoever. The Greeks believed “god” possessed this quality because we would otherwise have power over him to the degree that we could move him to anger or joy or grief. He would cease to be absolute and sovereign. Thus the “god” of the philosophers was lonely, isolated, and compassionless. This all makes for good, logical, philosophy, but it is not what God reveals about Himself in the Scriptures and classical theists categorically reject it.


To sustain the charge that Greek influence was detrimental to the formation of the atemporality of God, those making the charge need to demonstrate two things. The first is to show that influence of Greek thought in the systematic formulation of atemporality is inherently detrimental to constructing proper theology.

The second is that these accusers must demonstrate that they can present formulations for divine temporality that are not themselves based upon man’s philosophy and simply an intrusion of personal biases into what is likely sound doctrine. The majority of evangelicals do not support the strong libertarianism the temporalist open theist is promoting. For open theism and its cling to libertarianism to survive, its proponents must somehow overthrow atemporality. Yet among classical theists there is no such compelling philosophical agenda requiring them to defend the timelessness of God. So who really has the ulterior motive when the charge of Greek influence is laid? The answer is clear—those who have the most to lose—the open theists.






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