A problem that occurs in the Eight Chapters is does God’s foreknowledge contradict man’s choice? In other words if God hardened the heart of Pharaoh, as we are told in the Bible, then does this not make His subsequent punishment of Pharaoh unfair? What happened to man’s free will of choice if God forced this mortal to behave in a certain way contrary to his own? One of the solutions to this apparent problem is addressed by Moses Maimonides. The core of his argument is that Pharaoh was not a blank page that God wrote on without his consent: he had already nearly covered the initially blank page of his life with the writing of cruelty and despotism. The Egyptian ruler had thereby become a man whose whole life was geared to evil. He was no longer a man whose actions were wrong or evil; he had actually transformed himself into a person whose first characteristic was evil, much in the same way that Hitler became.
According to Maimonides, when a person such as Pharaoh repeats evil actions so often that they become a part of their essence, then they are no longer just another person, they are an evil being. Such a person is suitable for God to use as an example to other people and nations; as a warning that such behavior is unacceptable to the righteous God, and as a guide to better actions. Maimonides devotes the whole of chapter 5 to the topic “freedom of choice.” He writes: “If you shall inquire ‘Is it not so that the Almighty knows all happenings even before they occur? Does He know that a certain individual is to be either righteous or wicked, or does He not know? If you say that He does know that this individual is to be righteous, it is then impossible for him not to be so. For if you say that it is possible for the individual not to be righteous but wicked, than God’s knowledge is impotent (instead of omnipotent) ‘.” I believe that Maimonides says that God’s knowledge is not a decree or cause for the actions of men: rather, He knows only as a result of the outcome of our choice. The knowledge is only an outcome of the cause, this being what the person chooses. It is as if He knows only after the choice has been made.
... gifts God gave as God made within God’s own image. By the choice of free-will, we are able to commit Moral evil; we ... inner and exterior. All of which refer to evil being separate from God and God’s creation. Yet, when tragedy strikes, when harm ... own hearts. Christians called it the battle between good and evil; God and the devil’s battle for souls. Muslims call it ...
It is quite clear that man is limited in time. For every mortal man there exists a past, a present and a future- before, now and after. Therefore we are right to ask how a fortune-teller, a mortal man living in the present, can see the future. He lives in the present and is limited by the present. Therefore he cannot be in the past or future, while living in, and being limited by, the present. In relation to God, however, this question is not applicable.
God created the limitations of time, and He Himself is not included within those limitations. He is infinite; He possesses no boundaries, limitations, or definitions. By God there is no past, present, or future. For if He could exist only in the present, than he would be limited by the present, the finite. However, He is infinite and therefore knows what will occur. For before Him, there is nothing which was in the past, or will be in the future; there is only that which is, and has always been.
He exists beyond the limitation. He therefore perceives all things in accordance with his own infinite existence. This is therefore parallel to the knowledge which comes only after the happening has already taken place: such knowledge definitely does not affect one’s choice since it is only a result of the choice that, as far as God is concerned, has already been exercised by His creatures. God’s knowledge of man’s future actions does not contradict our choice, because God’s knowledge even of future happenings is only an outcome of that which already is, and always was, in God’s eyes. It is not the foreseeing of something that will be, but rather of something that has always been. God knows all events constantly and therefore, no fresh knowledge is ever acquired by Him..
... I have this thirst for knowledge. At this time I don’t have any short-term future educational goals. I have always ... was made easier my employers offer to pay for it. Present The course work at the University of Phoenix has strengthened ... was excellent, because I could take a complex issue and present it in a way that nyone could understand it – I ...