If God Knew Man Would Fall, Then Why…?


by Rob Lundberg

There are many questions that are a challenge to the Christian faith, but this one came up the other night in a group that our family fellowships with. The person asking it during our group meeting really put some thought into it, and it is one worth our posting a response to it.  Perhaps you have heard this one as well. Here is the question:

If God has infinite knowledge, WHY did He create beings that He foreknew would sin and then sacrifice His Son to redeem them?

As I reflect back to conversations with students and young adults in our student ministry, this sounds like a  question that there are many are asking. They either ask it in a group setting or within the recesses of their heart and mind.  In fact if you and I are thinking about the nerve of this question, I am sure that some of us have thought of this question or pondered it. 

So, how do we answer this question? Let me approach this from three perspectives.  I will present these perspectives in the form of three questions.

When you say God, what do you mean?

When you look at the options for determining what kind of God exists, we can look at it from three different angles: no God at all. God is all. and God made all. The first option corresponds to the worldview of atheism.  The second, “God is all” refers to the pantheistic religions like Hinduism and Buddhism.  Each of the pantheistic religions have major flaws that we will not address here.

The third option of “God” making all is the best option but then you have to address the three “great” monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. I will address this in a little bit. But if we look at the God of the monotheistic religions, we can see that the God we are speaking of is a Being who is spaceless, timeless, immaterial, powerful,  infinite, absolute, moral, personal, intelligent, the sustainer, Creator and First Uncaused Cause of the Universe.  All three of the monotheistic religions would concur that God is that Uncaused Cause.


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However as we look at the next question we will see that there are departures within the scope of understanding the nature of this God.  The question we need to address to answer this objection is what kind of creatures did God create?

What kind of creatures did God create?

When we look at the options for what we see around us with our understanding of a monotheistic worldview we see four options.

The first option is that God could have created nothing.  This would fit nicely under the banner of an atheistic worldview, but we have yet to see any scientific proof of a macro evolutionary model to even have a shot at accepting this option.

The second option is that God could have created creatures who could not sin. Under this option there is a compromise of there being a God who is not loving, but has created us as “moist robots” with no free will.  We are nothing more than cosmic chess pieces under this view.

This view fits the understanding of the Islamic view of God in the idea that there is no free will.  The only problem with understanding is that in order for one to say that there is no free will, they have to freely make the statement of having no free will.  It totally contradicts itself.

The third option is that God could have created creatures who could sin, and would sin, but He would overlook it and “wipe it under the rug.  There are several problems with this view.

One of those problems has to do with the fact that if God is holy and just, this option would nullify those two attributes of God. Wiping a moral transgression under the rug or overlooking it, shows an assault on God’s holiness.

The other problem is related to us. If God overlooks the moral transgression and that transgression is against us or a loved one, we would crying for justice.  But this view cancels out the just nature of God, and there then becomes not standard for our receiving justice.


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So what we have seen with the options that God could have taken fall short of the attributes of His love, His holiness and His justice.  Do these first three options answer our question,  If God has infinite knowledge, WHY did He create beings that He foreknew would sin and then sacrifice His Son to redeem them?  The answer to that question is “No” and opens us up for the fourth and best option, and the one that can easily be justified.

The fourth option is that God created creatures He knew sin but He would provide a way for their being reconciled back to Him.  As I mentioned a moment ago, we all want justice when we are the recipient of a moral transgression at the hands of one who has committed the action. This is what we call moral evil.

This option remedies that in which Jesus Christ came to save us from our sinful nature and the moral transgressions we commit against a Moral Lawgiver (God).  In this option, the attributes of love (John 3:16, Romans 5:8), justice (1 Peter 3:18; Romans 5:1-6); and holiness (1 Peter 1:15-16) are all intact, and not lost; for they are found in a cross. This is the best option of the four options but why?

What is the result of the best option?

Under these options there is only so much that we can understand before it fades off in the “black box” of becoming a mystery.  But the objection cries out for answer in search of hope, and our hope is not a blind hope despite the mystery.  It is because of the fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Unlike the other options for creating, we see that this hope reminds us with three things that I will close with.

The first is that the world which now is, is not the world that once was.  Man was created in the image and likeness of God, and put us in the mess, when the man and the woman fell into sin, which is the source for this objection.

Secondly, the world that now is, is not the world that must be.  We can live in the resurrection power of Christ, and be His ambassadors of reconciliation before God. This is not something that Islam or Judaism can provide, but it is something that everyone who embraces a faith outside of the Christian faith needs.

And finally, the world that now is, is not the world that will be in the future to come. We have a hope beyond the mystery of the question.  That is a new world where Christ reigns supreme. For now, we need to abide until He comes or calls us home.

So why did God create beings that He knew in advance would sin and then sacrifice His Son to redeem them? Simply stated, God made everything perfect, but we messed it up by misusing our God given freedom.  Christ came to fix it by providing the ultimate payment for our sin and transgressions against our Creator.  He did that so that you and I can be reconciled to Him and walk in a relationship with Him for His glory.
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robgoodgravatarRob is a blogger, writer and public speaker on a mission to equip the believer to think and articulate what they believe and to communicate the message of the gospel to a confused culture in a confused, chaotic, “brave new world.”

He is available to come and speak to your church, college club, or group. Find out what people are saying.  If you would like to support this ministry with a one time or monthly gift, you can do that by clicking here

If you would like to book Rob for a speaking event, you can do so by emailing him at realissueapologetics@yahoo.com    If you have other questions about apologetics or doing apologetics, or if you are looking for apologetics resources, contact our ministry by email.

 

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