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Freedom of the Will Hardcover – November 1, 2007
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"The Freedom of the Will" is a challenging read and might be too hard for people new to the debate between Calvinists and Arminians. It would take too long to outline the entire argument Edwards makes or recap every point he touches on, but what follows are some examples of the ideas and questions raised by Edwards in this book.
1) It is alleged by Arminian belief that a person or action cannot be morally good (or bad) if the agent performing the action is incapable of doing otherwise. But can God be evil? The Bible teaches that He is not only holy, just, and perfect, but that He knows everything that has happened and everything that is to come. So can He do or be evil, or is His will and nature necessarily determined to be perfectly good? If God is capable of doing evil, and not necessarily good, then how can He assure us that He will be perfect for all eternity (if one day, He might choose not to be)? And if He is necessarily determined to be perfectly good forever and cannot be otherwise, does this make God any less holy, perfect, and morally virtuous? As a corollary to this, if He is no less praise-worthy by being necessarily holy, are we, as fallen human beings born into sinfulness, any less blame-worthy if we are necessarily inclined to evil, incapable of willing what is truly good?
2) Another area Edwards focuses on is discussing the Arminian contention that the will actually is free.Read more ›
This particular edition has a lot of typos. Something about "Cod's majestic glory" made me chuckle. Another problem is that there is no explanation by the publisher. Footnotes go on for pages and then are signed by "-W" Is this Edwards? Is this somebody else?
Great book. I don't know if it would convince a die hard Arminian, but the book makes me meditate on the nature of God and his relationship with creation and his creatures. Is God the author of evil? How can we be held responsible for moral choices when we are morally deficient to make good choices? What is human will?
I definitely need to go through the book again.
"For that which is possessed of no will, cannot have any paver [power]or opportunity of doing according to its mill, [will] nor be necessitated to act contrary to its will . . ." Near the end of the same paragraph is the this:
". . . but not that the bird's power of flying has a power arid [and] Liberty of flying."
Then in the next paragraph we find this: "But that which has no will, cannot be subject of these things, -- I need say the less on this bead [head], Mr. Locke having set the same thing forth . . ."
When one is seeking to gain a knowledge of Mr. Edwards' thoughts it is disturbing to have to try to figure out what the original text actually says. As a publisher of numerous books via lulu.com , most of which I market via my own website and which includes two books [Luther on Human Will, and The Bondage of the Will] for which the text was meticulously copied from, or abridged from, other texts, I think I have a duty to report this kind of poor workmanship.
I also found typos on pages 9, 14, 17, 18, 19, 23 and 24.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Jonathan Edwards excellent puritan writer a solid account on this subject.Published 13 days ago by Kay Harlan
Astonishing presentation of the implications of the fall and the reality of the sinful nature of man.
Excellent book to better understand that were either serving God or another and that our will is never free.Published 5 months ago by Charles Bennett