David Cowles

Oct 12, 2021

The Creation Story in Genesis makes it clear that ‘Adam and Eve’, and by extension the entire cosmos, are entirely free; otherwise, the idea of ‘creation’ would be a sham. If the cosmos is just a figment of God’s imagination, subject to his absolute control, then it is not ‘created’ at all but just ‘dreamed’. Creation implies that a new entity comes into being that is no longer subject to the will or the whims of its creator.

The Creation Story in Genesis makes it clear that ‘Adam and Eve’, and by extension the entire cosmos, are entirely free; otherwise, the idea of ‘creation’ would be a sham. If the cosmos is just a figment of God’s imagination, subject to his absolute control, then it is not ‘created’ at all but just ‘dreamed’. Creation implies that a new entity comes into being that is no longer subject to the will or the whims of its creator.


Consider music (or art or literature). When we say that Beethoven ‘created’ his 9th Symphony, we understand that Beethoven retains no control over his ‘creation’. It now belongs to its conductors, musicians, audience and critics. Is God any less of a Creator than Beethoven?


However, unlike Beethoven, God may still be able to interact with his creation, not in his role as creator, but in his role as comrade-in-arms. In Marxist terms, God is the ultimate ‘fellow traveler’. According to 20th century philosopher, Alfred North Whitehead, every event impacts God’s ‘Consequent Nature’ while that same ‘Consequent Nature’ influences every event.


In Biblical Judaism, this is represented in the constant dialogue between God and the Patriarchs, Moses and the Prophets. In Christianity it is represented in the Incarnation and the Holy Spirit. In Hasidic Judaism, it is represented in the Shekinah (sparks of divinity resident in every actual entity, i.e. event or object).


In contract to Determinism and Deism, Judeo-Christian theology allows God to play an active role in the unfolding of history and the evolution of the cosmos without compromising in any way the ultimate freedom of that cosmos.

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