God, heaven, angels


The notion that God is eternal, can be interpreted as meaning that God is everlasting within time, or that he is timeless, i.e. exists outside time (and created time as part of, or as well as, creating the universe).

I only want to follow up on the idea that he is everlasting, because I don’t understand the concept of timelessness.  For example, surely any action must require a time component.  E.g., just the thought, “I will create something”, must occur within time.

So, starting from the assumption that God is everlasting, God existed infinitely far into the past.  So he was alone for an infinitely long time before he created the angels.  For starters this makes no sense.   The time that the angels have been around, no matter how long, is thus less than the blink of an eye.  Similarly, humans have been around for infinitely less time than the blink of an eye.  Why would an infinitely long-lived being create something whose lifetime in comparison is infinitely short?   The whole lifetime of the universe from big bang to some possible end is still infinitely short compared with God’s lifetime.  He must have been infinitely bored before he came up with the idea of creating other life.  But if he had foreknowledge, he must have always known he was going to do that anyway.  If so, why didn’t he do it infinitely long ago.  Maybe he did.  Maybe we’re one repetition of an endless number of universes God created to keep himself amused, with an infinite number of “Falls” and an infinite number of crucifixions of Jesus.

But never mind that problem.  He created the angels with the foreknowledge that a certain proportion, let’s say one third, would get sick of their status in heaven as less than equal to God.  Their punishment for acting out of dissatisfaction with their lot in life, was to be condemned to everlasting punishment.  But given that God created that group of angels with the foreknowledge that he would condemn them to this fate, he created them with no other purpose.  Their sole purpose was to satisfy his thirst for revenge and to inflict the worst possible suffering for disobedience.

Can you have free will if you have foreknowledge?  With foreknowlege, you know what you are going to do, and what the consequences of that will be, so that if you choose to do something else instead, you knew you were going to do that too.  In effect you can’t actually change your mind because if you do you know that that was what was ultimately in your mind anyway.   This implies that humans and angels, not having foreknowledge of their actions, can have free will (if God chooses not to control their actions) but it means that God, having foreknowledge of all his own actions, is the only being that cannot have free will.

If the group of rebellious angels, having been given free will, used it to struggle against God, there is no reason to think that at any other time in the past (not disclosed to us) or at any time in the future, any other group of angels might feel similar dissatisfaction and struggle against God in similar or totally different ways.  They might attempt open rebellion, civil disobedience, just try to find a quiet place away from it all, stop praising God, get depressed, who knows what, because they are clearly not robots; they have free will.

Analogously, the vast majority of people, used to a life of swimming, hunting, fishing, playing, working, here on earth, but who in a moment of weakness asked Jesus to save them and give them eternal life, might very well regret their decision long before their first billion trillion years of eternal life have gone by, and just wish they had some other options like being by themselves just with green trees surrounding them, a lake beside them, watching the fish jumping, the animals hunting for food, trying to get birds to feed out of their hands, just reading books, lying in the sun, sleeping in a warm bed, passing on what they know to their children, etc.  i.e. just being human again, and doing any of the things that are human nature.  How depressing when you start thinking about the purpose of being in heaven.  Heaven would be anything but a wonderful place to humans!  Christians’ only hope, and what a desperate hope it must be, is that their minds are changed miraculously by God, so that they only enjoy the things God expects them to enjoy, and never have any wish for any of the things which made them human.  This in turn means they could be nothing but a supernatural version of Stepford Wives.  Hard to say then, whether being a lobotomised version of themselves in heaven, or potentially retain their faculties in hell would be the better of the two options.


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