Throughout the history of Christian theological thought, a key tenet of orthodox belief has been that of divine omniscience–that God knows (infinitely) all that can be known. Notwithstanding the various caveats that need to be assigned in order to properly qualify such a statement, there are several logical and theological challenges that must be balanced in order to properly maintain not only the internal coherence of such a assertion, but also the meaningfulness of it to theological belief.

One of the challenges is related to the necessary distinction that must be maintained between the eternal nature and being of God and the ontology of that which God has created. After all, if a “strong” theory of omniscience is established that concomitantly breaks down this necessary distinction, the preservation of the doctrine of omniscience leads to, IMO, a much worse end than would otherwise be had.

So let’s start with an apparently simple statement:

“God knows that X will happen in the future.”

From a “strong” doctrine of omniscience, the answer to such a statement is an easy yes. After all, since the future is assumed to be “something” that can be known (especially in re: prophecy, et al), God must “know” the future in More >