Chapter

Timelessness and Foreknowledge

Paul Helm

in Eternal God

Second edition

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780199590391
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595516 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199590391.003.0006
Timelessness and Foreknowledge

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The alleged incompatibility between divine foreknowledge and human freedom is discussed. Since for a timeless God foreknowledge is not strictly before, does timelessness solve the problem of foreknowledge and freedom as Boethius argued? It does not. The prima facie incompatibility remains. Foreknowledge is explored further. It is argued that, properly understood, a timeless God may be said to foreknow events. The sense of the claim that God timelessly knows what is happening now is discussed. Different senses of the necessity of God's knowledge, including the necessity of pastness, are clarified. Even though it makes sense to suppose that a timeless God has foreknowledge, such timeless knowledge does not provide a way for reconciling divine foreknowledge and human freedom.

Keywords: divine foreknowledge; Boethius; timelessness; foreknowledge; necessity; freedom

Chapter.  5021 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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