Personal notes – Reading Flatland by Edwin Abbott

Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Currently Reading
Flatland : A Romance of Many Dimensions (Dover Thrift Editions)
By Edwin A. Abbott
see related

Mintel2007  (Link not working with Xanga closed – 6/22/13 asked an intriguing question. I am going to give what I think about it, but am opening this up to your opinions and beliefs too. I think we can all be enriched.

As we become students of the Bible, our faith will be challenged, inspired, and developed. I have been studying the Bible in a manner that I’ve never done before in my life. Praise to the Most High, my refuge! Now, I have a question for you regarding something that has been popping out at me in the Bible. I will find an argument for it, and then a few passages later I will find something to counter it. What is it that the Lord has shown YOU about predestination?

Regarding the question of predestination I know that God has said a few things that add to the picture. Psalm 139, a Psalm that at times is comforting to me and other times infuriating because God talks about how He formed our inward parts and covered us in our mother’s womb(verse 13) and verse 16 that he fashioned our days. Given my past, I often bristled at that passage for I thought what kind of love is it that gave me a past of abuse. Yet, I also see that God will replace ashes for beauty as time goes by.

From the moment the World was spoken into existence by the Word of God, he had plans. I suspect He knew that Adam and Eve would disobey and He had Jesus there to redeem the earth. Genesis 3:17 was a plan. All we need to do is read Revelation to see that God can use all to accomplish his good purpose for Him. For example the Kings of the Earth will get it in their hearts to go against Babylon. Revelation 17:17, “For God has put it into their hearts to fulfill His purpose, to be of one mind, and to give their kingdom to the best, until the words of God are fulfilled.”

Yes, God is sovereign, in control and knows what will happen, but that does not negate free will. God wants us to be able to choose, for if we do not choose to love Him, but are compelled to love Him by His strong will it isn’t love, it would be a rape of our spirits. God gave us the liberty to choose Him or not choose Him. I pray people choose Him.

We see the world in a limited perspective. We are subject to time and space, and do not see the whole picture. No matter how much we know, there is still an infinite amount of things that we do not know or perceive. God falls into that category. We have a God that is far bigger than our biggest imaginings of Him, and that is a good thing. I wouldn’t want a God that I could completely predict and understand, what good would that be. Often we won’t see the incredible workings of God until in retrospect.

God loves to surprise His people and do things in ways that seem impossible. He had Gideon greatly reduce His army so that the odds were impossible, and by breaking a pottery lamp and shouting the enemy was confused and defeated. Joshua marched around Jericho and shouted and the walls tumbled. Jesus was born of a virgin, and did not act the role of great warrior king that the Israelites assumed would be coming. God created water from a rock, manna in the wilderness, parted the Red Sea. He asks Job very pointed questions about the creation of the earth and the sustaining of the creatures.

I was able to see that even though during my pagan days I used to walk around saying, “Thou are god” and believing that I was in control of my universe, that really I was in control of NOTHING. I can’t keep my heart pumping 24/7/365. I can’t control my breathing, my thoughts can run rampant, I can’t create new life from nothing. Any control I have is an illusion.

God can provide free will and at the same time know what is going on. Our pastor once had someone stand up on the altar, and had people walking around the aisles, with others being roadblocks in the middle of certain aisles. Only God from his elevated perspective could see the entire “road”, the people walking would not know where the roadblocks were. God is not a control freak, but if we want to walk smoothly through life, he wants us in constant communication with Him. When Adam and Eve ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they thought they were gaining an independence and being more like God, instead they put themselves under bondage. Before the fruit, they knew only good and walked closely with God. After the fruit they hid, had to cover themselves and gained a knowledge of evil. God wants the best for us, so it comes down to trusting God.

There is an incredible book called FLATLAND (I put up the link to the book). It talks about two-dimensional creatures, circle, line, triangle and one of the creatures talks about the 3rd dimension. His fellow creatures think he is insane for there is no third dimension in their world, and if the third dimension intersects their world it is only at a few points.

When God intersects our world it often goes unnoticed. But that does not mean that He isn’t there.

We are not big enough to conceive of all that God can conceive. His thoughts are greater than our thoughts. I think we just have to trust. We can have free will and predestination simultaneously, and God can do it.

Hope that helps.



About Heather Marsten

Welcome to Heather's Blog. I'm looking forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. I just moved about nine years of material over from another blog site, Xanga, who may close down mid-July. At first I was disappointed to make the move because I had a lifetime membership at Xanga and had to spend weeks transferring posts. But now I'm thrilled. Already I've met new bloggers and read many new websites. Blogging is a wonderful way to expand my horizons and garner new ideas. I'm a happily married mom of three young adults. My husband and I are proud to watch our children grow and venture out into the world. My daughter is still in college but my two sons have graduated. One has a job and the other just graduated and is in the process of finding a job in his field, physics. Anyone know of any jobs out there? I'm proud of our children and love watching them grow and mature. They've become fine, compassionate, and loving people. Empty nest? Nah, I'm too busy to let an empty nest bother me. Not enough hours in the day. My husband and I enjoy quiet time together and I have many interests to pursue - one of which is blogging :D I am a born-again believer and love God. As you read this blog, you will discover that Bible studies thrill me. There is so much wisdom contained between the covers of the Bible and I am fortunate to sit under the teachings of a remarkable pastor, Pastor Don Moore. Members of our church (Living Word Chapel in West Hurley, New York) are encouraged to teach and there are visiting pastors who stop by our church, I also study the Bible on my own and love sharing what I learn. One other passion is writing. My current work in process is a memoir. A scene from my memoir was published in a book called: Heavenly Company: Entertaining Angels Unaware - an anthology of angelic encounters compiled by Cecil Murphy. I'm hoping my memoir will encourage other survivors of abuse. I grew up in a home filled with abuse, including incest. For most of my life I was searching for something that would fill the void of not being loved by my parents. I tried many ways to find that love -- therapy, relationships, occult studies, and keeping my life so filled I had no way to think about my past. It was only when I discovered God that I was able to put the pieces of my life back together and walk forward in a joyous life. My nickname - wondering has changed from wondering where the heck God was in my life, to wondering what incredible adventure is going to happen next. I hope you enjoy my site. Please say hi, share some thoughts, and ask questions. I look forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. Have a blessed day. Heather
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