Thursday, December 11, 2008

Does God Relent?

by Damian Romano

A few months back I did a series of posts where I reviewed and interacted with William Hasker's book The Triumph of God over Evil: Theodicy for a World of Suffering. Well since then I haven't done a whole lot of reading on the subject but then came across this quote from John Frame on the topic of God's alleged relenting. I found it good foder for contemplation and feel Dr. Frame does well in addressing the subject.

How then should we understand God’s “relenting?” For one thing, God states as a general policy in Jer. 18:5-10 that if he announces judgment and people repent, he will relent; similarly if he pronounces blessing and people do evil. In other words, relenting is part of God’s unchanging plan, not a change forced on him by his ignorance. Further, God is not only transcendent, but immanent. He has dwelled on earth in the tabernacle and temple, in Christ, and in his general omnipresence (Psm. 139:7-12). When God interacts with people in time, he does one thing, then another. He curses, then blesses. His actions are in temporal sequence and therefore, in one sense, changing. But these changes are the outworking of God’s eternal plan, which does not change.

It is important, then, to see God as working from both above and below, in eternity and time, not only in time as open theists propose.

John M. Frame, Does the Bible Affirm Open Theism?

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