Vincent Cheung #fundie

Freedom is almost always falsely defined, even undefined. We must at least answer the question, "Free from what?" Since we are referring to divine determinism, the "determiner" is God. So the only relevant thing to be free from is God, and whether we are free from any other thing is irrelevant. Thus the question becomes, "Is man free from God in any sense?" Once you declare that man is free from God in some sense, you have lost the God of the Bible.

The Christian faith teaches something different. Absolute divine determinism is true; therefore, man has no freedom relative to God – he is not free from God in any sense. However, he is still morally responsible and accountable because God holds him responsible and accountable. There is no logical reason to introduce the issue of freedom. The premise, "responsibility presupposes freedom," is arbitrary, unbiblical, and impossible to prove. Rather, Scripture teaches that responsibility presupposes divine judgment, and divine judgment presupposes God's decision to make this judgment. Therefore, human responsibility presupposes divine sovereignty, not human freedom. We are morally responsible because God is sovereign and we are not free.

The question then becomes one of justice, for to many people it seems unjust to hold someone accountable who is not free. However, this is just the same question rephrased. The issue of justice appears relevant only because one has brought freedom into the discussion by force. The answer is that this is just because it is what God has decided, and he is the sole and ultimate standard of justice; therefore, this is just by definition. People might not like this because it contradicts their intuition of freedom, responsibility, and justice; however, theirs is a sinful intuition. They appeal to their intuition, even making it the basis on which all other considerations must turn, but they have ignored the noetic effects of sin.

Scripture teaches that every person has an innate knowledge of God in the sense that he knows about God, even some of his attributes and commands, by instinct, or by intuition, apart from observation and experience. This knowledge resides in man's mind because God has directly imparted it to him as a creature made in the divine image. Biblical apologists sometimes mention this; however, this is different from appealing to intuition as a basis for argument.

Our innate knowledge of God is not established by intuition itself, but by revelation. We do not say, "We have an intuitive knowledge of God; therefore, we indeed have this knowledge, and this knowledge is true." Instead, we say, "God's revelation tells me that I have an intuitive knowledge of God; therefore, I indeed have an intuitive knowledge of God." And we say, "God's revelation tells me that my intuitive knowledge of God is true; therefore, my intuitive knowledge of God is true."

We also add, "God's revelation tells me that our intuitive knowledge of God has been suppressed and distorted by sin; therefore, although it is true that I have an intuitive knowledge of God, and although this intuitive knowledge of God is true, this intuition cannot function as a source of my theology or as justification for my premises in reasoning, because I cannot accurately perceive and represent the information contained in this intuition. Rather, I need God's revelation to tell me what this intuitive knowledge contains and what to do with it."


When we refer to what we know by intuition, we do not make a direct appeal to intuition, but we appeal to what God tells us that we know by intuition. In the context of theology and apologetics, we mention this as one of the reasons that sinners cannot excuse themselves. They know God by instinct, but they refuse to acknowledge him or worship him, to believe the gospel and to obey his commandments. We do not begin by saying that everyone knows God by intuition, so that there is no excuse for unbelief; rather, we begin by revelation, and then on the basis of revelation say that everyone knows God by intuition, and therefore there is no excuse for unbelief.



So were we! You can find all of this, and more, on Fundies Say the Darndest Things!

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