There are 3 apparently conflicting theodical (I think it is a word!) views and how they relate to God’s omnipotence. They perhaps can be related to a parent’s response to the pending tragedy of a child crossing a road. Why didn’t the parent rescue the child? Three possible answers: (1)They would not, (2)could but did not or (3) simply could not do anything. Applied to God:
1.Omnipotent God: boy walks into road – placed there by parent deliberately the car ordained by God for this particular event.
2. Self limiting God: Boy walks into road. Parent can do something but does nothing. God chooses to do nothing.
3. Process God: Boy walks into road. Parent can do nothing. God cannot do anything to prevent this event.
Let’s draw a curve – a ‘u’ shape representing the trajectory of God through Jesus Christ from time beginning (alpha) top left with creation ending (omega) top right with the completion of all things.
Let the top left represent creation – 1 fits perfectly fine here.
Let the top right be the end of all things – 1 fits perfectly well here too.
Let the cusp of the U be the lowest kenotic point = the cross. Here God can do nothing (although it is a pivotal point in history) 3 perfectly fits well here.
Leading up to the cusp we have the incarnation – self limitation of God 2 fits perfectly well here.
After the cusp we have the resurrection and ascension and Pentecost – a foretaste of 1.
Each theodicy is correct when related to the correct God event. That is omnipotent God > self limiting God> Process God > … > omnipotent God.
God is beyond all things and each theodicy is only adequate in so far as it describes not the actuality of God but the revelation of God in each major event.
Process on its own does not sufficiently describe God any more than other forms of neo classical theism or classical theism but all are accurate within a given divine event context.
Arthur young also depicts the evolution of creation from the big bang to singular cells and onto complexity and greater movement and back to what may be termed de Chardin’s omega point. He also traces the same u curve to illustrate his point – see his ‘reflexive universe’. Maybe a similarity can be traced here.
But let’s go back to the Theodic curve and refine it. Down at the cusp we have the crucifixion. This should be shown rather as a point rather than a flowing curve rather similar to the bezier drawing converting a curve to an angle for the truth is that the cross was punctiliar – aorist rather than the perfect tense. It was the moment of Christ’s death that we are looking at here – the cry of ‘it is finished’ as a singular momentous act not part of a gradual flow but a cutting in – a de cision. This converts the u into a v but not with straight lines.
Let us also realise that when we stand outside time we can join the beginning with the end- the alpha with the omega – united in omnipotence – we have now a