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Tertium Quid

January 30, 2013


A paradox: Predestination and the Freedom of the Will. Must we choose between Twainish
determinism and the human autonomy of Open Theism? Or is there a tertium quid? May we refuse the distinction between freedom and necessity altogether and, instead, approach our lives with a live-in-the-paradox mentality that understands the two to be the same thing? Where man’s freedom is a necessary outworking of God’s providence?

C. S. Lewis thinks so:

The thing was going to be done. There was going to arrive, in the course of time, a moment at which he would have done it. The future act stood there, fixed and unaltered as if he had already performed it. It was a mere irrelevant detail that it happened to occupy the position we call future instead of that which we call past . . . Predestination and freedom were apparently identical. He could no longer see any meaning in the many arguments he had heard on this subject.

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