Why do some people receive the gift of faith and not others?
(12-21-2011, 12:08 PM)Martinus Wrote:
(12-20-2011, 09:15 PM)Doce Me Wrote:
(12-20-2011, 06:38 PM)Martinus Wrote: The first could work. But I still don't really see how the antecedent wish would become a subsequent choice to the contrary of that wish. It almost seems to denote a change in God?

The difference between "permission" and  "choice" is important.  There is no change in God if He antecedently chooses good but consequently permits evil.  The thing chosen (antecedently) CAN be not done if  God exerts His Divine power of permission.  The choice in this case is absolutely desired but not absolutely carried out.
Note that "antecedent" and "consequent" are in time for us, but all at once for God.  "Permission" isn't a after the fact concession to reality.

Okay, that makes sense to me. And certainly there's no contradiction between wishing good and permitting evil.

If, however, God wishes the salvation of all but doesn't accomplish it in some (even though he could have), I think there must be a reason for that beyond just his good pleasure (otherwise I fail to see how his good pleasure wouldn't correspond to his wish that all be saved). That's why the Molinist idea of foreseen merits and demerits makes sense to me. I know there are problems with that, too. But there are always problems and a level of mystery in this, it seems.

If God doesn't accomplish salvation in some the positive reason is their own foreseen sin, not His good pleasure.  The mystery is why He (according to His good pleasure) permits some to die in their sin, and brings others to conversion.  There is nothing unjust there; the thought that  "it just isn't fair" doesn't really make sense.  There is still a mystery, but can't we leave that to God, who works all things to good?

You're right, you can't get rid of the mystery, even if you are the greatest theologian.  The temptation is to deny one half of the mystery in order to more clearly support the other - e.g. free will and the absolute sovereignty of God.  I am no theologian (obviously) but from what little I know I think Thomism is most satisfactory in accepting both sides of the mystery. The Molinist idea (as far as I understand) makes God's power arrange things to conform to man's will (as foreseen) - man takes the lead instead of God.
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Re: Why do some people receive the gift of faith and not others? - by Doce Me - 12-21-2011, 05:32 PM



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