Tuesday, July 03, 2018

Common Objection #35- "Why Didn't God Create a World in Which Everyone Freely Chooses Him?"

Several weeks ago, at the Mentionables Conference in Greensboro, NC1, the team and I had the pleasure of participating in a discussion panel with Ben Watkins of Real Atheology2. Watkins was a delight to interact with and I greatly enjoyed our time together.

During one of the panel discussions, Ben asked a question that I have found myself thinking about as well: "If God exists, why didn't He create a world in which everyone would freely choose Him?"

One certainly can understand why Ben and others would ask the question. After all, if God is all-loving, it seems to follow that He would want everyone to choose Him. Moreover, if God is all-powerful, it would seem to follow that He could create a world like the one Ben imagines. However, I believe that it is important to remember that being all-powerful does not mean God has the ability to do the logically impossible. In other words, God cannot make a squared-circle or a married bachelor.3 Keeping that in mind, it seems reasonable to argue that it is not feasible for God to actualize a world in which everyone freely chooses Him for the same reason it is not feasible for God to create squared-circles- it is logically impossible.

In other words, it is logically impossible to make someone freely do something. As philosopher William Lane Craig explains, "...there's no guarantee that a possible world in which everyone hears the gospel and is freely saved is feasible for God to create...For all we know, in any world of free people that God could create, some people would freely reject His grace and be lost."4

Therefore, it seems reasonable to conclude that it is not necessarily true that God is able to create a world in which everyone chooses Him.

So, in conclusion, while it would seem ideal for God to create a universe in which everyone chooses Him, it seems plausible that it is not possible for Him to do so.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad


Footnotes:

1. For more about the conference, see here.
2. You can learn more about Real Atheology here.
3. For a fully explanation of why this is the case, see here.
4. William Lane Craig, 
On Guard, p. 277-278.

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