Additional knowledge from other fields, such as philosophy, psychology, and sociology, seem to further count against Calvinism’s understanding of our salvation. These are external conceptual problems for the Calvinist hypothesis, and therefore, further reasons to embrace the alternative hypothesis–Arminianism.
One of the best ways to learn something is listening to others with different backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences. We often gain insights in our quest for truth only after their “outside” input. This is because we need one another to fill out our understanding and correct our errors. This is certainly the case as we wrestle with the question of predestination or free will.
The question of predestination or free will is a very hard one – which is why there has been so much debate about it. It involves an understanding of how God works, which is always tricky. His ways are above our ways, and “for now we only see in a mirror dimly” (I Cor. 13:12).
In my final post in this series I’ll discuss the last three objections that are often raised against Essentialism. If successful, they give us reason to think Libertarianism is correct, and therefore, the LGBTQ+ conversation is on track. If these objections are unsuccessful, we have good reason to believe the LGBTQ+ conversation has gotten off track, and true progress is made only by retracing our steps to see where we went wrong.
I have made the case that people flourish when living according to an Essentialist view of what we are. If I’m right, much of the narrative in Western culture should change, including our response to the LGBTQ+ debate. But if I’m wrong, we have the right narrative, which means we are on the right path to human flourishing and the common good.
In my last post I concluded, “[I]n order to help one another flourish, we must determine whether Libertarianism or Essentialism is the correct way to understand what we are. Understanding this clarifies the questions we should be asking and discussing. It determines how the data of experience should be interpreted. And it highlights the wrong questions both sides have been focusing upon.”
We cannot say we have fairly considered the issues surrounding the LGBTQ+ conversation without understanding and having good reasons why we embrace either the Libertarian or Essentialist views. Last week I discussed the Libertarian position. This week I’ll do the same for the Essentialist point of view.
Some believe God exists, but he can’t do anything about pain and suffering. He is just not powerful enough. Others believe God exists, but he doesn’t want to do anything about pain and suffering. He is just not good enough. Both attempts to explain the existence of God given the reality of Evil are common. I also think they are both wrong.
It remains to apply the reasoning of the morality of abortion to three other reproductive technologies: embryonic stem cell research, genetic testing, and human cloning. Are there ever morally appropriate uses of these technologies? I believe so in one case, and not in the other two cases. Let me explain why.