Advantage and Superiority of Open Theism over Closed Theism

‘Suppose that God is in time and is observing events occur as they occur and His foreknowledge of the future consists of possibilities that may or may not be.  And God is watching you drive at a certain speed down a road that He knows has a blind turn. And He sees another driving on the same road come the opposite direction at a certain speed. And God knows this man’s driving abilities and practices from the past and knows that he always passes over the dividing line on turns. So God is able to foreknow that you are going to get into a car accident with that man based upon His present knowledge that you are both on the same road heading opposite directions, driving at a certain speed each so that you will both take the turn at the same time, and His knowledge of this man’s driving abilities given His observation of His past practices.

Given all of the present circumstances, God can foreknow with certainty that you are going to get into a car accident. However, this certain foreknown future event is contingent upon the current circumstances. If the circumstances change, the future outcome would change. God knows that the event will only be certain if the current circumstances remain the same. The event is really only a possibility or a contingency, not an actuality or a certainty, as God is able to intervene and change the circumstances to prevent what He foresees coming.

So before the accident occurs, God intervenes and gives the other man a flat tire. The man pulls over before taking the blind turn. You take the turn and see the man on the side of the road with a flat tire and think nothing of it, not knowing that God just intervened to save you from death – thus changing the future.

Or, as God governs free moral beings through motives, God could prevent the accident by giving the man thoughts of food, appealing to his hungry stomach, so that the man pulls over at a gas station or a restaurant before the blind turn. Thus God again changes the future from what He foresaw it to be, since what He foresaw was a contingency or a possibility, or only a certainty given the current circumstances, so that God was free to intervene and prevent it.

On the other hand, suppose God simply foreknew from eternity that you were going to get into a car accident with that man on the blind turn. God’s foreknowledge of the event is eternal and certain, so it cannot be otherwise. God’s eternal foreknowledge cannot be wrong. God knows that it will happen. Not even God can prevent it as God cannot change the future to be other than what He has eternally and certainly foreknown it to be.

That is why a foreknowledge of possibilities is what liberates God to make plans, change plans, determine the future, and change the future. (…)’

source: Jesse Morrell, “Is Open Theism Heretical or Biblical? What is Foreknowledge? Can God Change the Future?” (biblicaltruthresources).


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