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Mill rejects Christianity and traditional Christian doctrine concerning omnipotence. Mill’s deity is similar to the ‘Platonic Demiurge’ and this deity simply develops matter from preexisting chaos and therefore would not only be limited in power but also finite in nature. Mill supports a concept of a first cause as in a series of events but this leaves the nagging question and problem of what was the cause of the Demiurge? An infinite eternal God can be understood as the first cause not needing a cause. A finite deity, although admittedly logically possible, requires further explanation. If the being is not revealed through Scriptural revelation, it is a God of primarily philosophical speculation and requires further elaboration on the part of Mill in regard to, for instance, why humanity should believe in and follow this type of deity, assuming that there is not a greater, infinite, eternal first cause that would necessarily exist behind that being.
October 21, 2014
I take a Biblical, Reformed view that God causes and wills all things. It is demonstrated that God has sovereign control of creation from Genesis to Revelation as eternal God.
God, therefore would have complete omnipotence. God would be the first cause.
God would also have omniscience in regard to future events.
However, for balance, even if in reality somehow philosophically and theologically, God cannot be logically omniscient, as in the future cannot be known by an infinite, omnipotent being; God as first cause would cause the future along with secondary causes, and therefore the results would be the same.
Therefore, I hold that God does have omniscience, but even if God does not, God being infinite and omnipotent is still ‘virtually omniscient’ and still able to predict the future in Scripture and bring about eschatological events.
God certainly would be able to control the secondary causes, and each requires a primary cause.
A secondary cause having significant moral freedom as long as not forced or coerced to commit thoughts, acts, actions.
MILL, JOHN STUART (1789-1861)(2003) Utilitarianism and On Liberty, Mary Warnock (ed.), Blackwell Publishing, Oxford.
MILL, JOHN STUART (1825-1868)(1984) Essays on Equality, Law, and Education, John M. Robson (ed.), University of Toronto Press, Toronto, University of Toronto Press.
MILL, JOHN STUART (1833)(1985)(2009) Theism: John Stuart Mill, The Collected Works of John Stuart Mill, Volume X - Essays on Ethics, Religion, and Society, Toronto, University of Toronto Press.
MILL, JOHN STUART (1874)(2002) The Utility of Religion, London, Longman, Green, and Reader.
MILL, JOHN STUART (1874)(1885) Nature the Utility of Religion and Theism, London,
Longmans, Green and Co.