No one created himself or herself. “Just as you had…
No one created himself or herself.
“Just as you had nothing to do with your first birth, your physical birth, you will have nothing to do with your spiritual birth. It is a divine work of God.”
– John MacArthur
We were created by a Creator for a purpose.
16 So it is God who decides to show mercy. We can neither choose it nor work for it.
17 For the Scriptures say that God told Pharaoh, “I have appointed you for the very purpose of displaying my power in you and to spread my fame throughout the earth.” 18 So you see, God chooses to show mercy to some, and he chooses to harden the hearts of others so they refuse to listen.
19 Well then, you might say, “Why does God blame people for not responding? Haven’t they simply done what he makes them do?”
20 No, don’t say that. Who are you, a mere human being, to argue with God? Should the thing that was created say to the one who created it, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 When a potter makes jars out of clay, doesn’t he have a right to use the same lump of clay to make one jar for decoration and another to throw garbage into? 22 In the same way, even though God has the right to show his anger and his power, he is very patient with those on whom his anger falls, who are destined for destruction. 23 He does this to make the riches of his glory shine even brighter on those to whom he shows mercy, who were prepared in advance for glory. 24 And we are among those whom he selected, both from the Jews and from the Gentiles.
– Romans 9:16-24 New Living Translation (NLT)
The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.
– Matthew 26:24 King James Version (KJV)
Did Judas have a choice, or was his fate set and unchangeable?
But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
– John 6:64 King James Version (KJV)
New International Version
While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.
New Living Translation
During my time here, I protected them by the power of the name you gave me. I guarded them so that not one was lost, except the one headed for destruction, as the Scriptures foretold.
English Standard Version
While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
King James Bible
While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
Contemporary English Version
While I was with them, I kept them safe by the power you have given me. I guarded them, and not one of them was lost, except the one who had to be lost. This happened so that what the Scriptures say would come true.
Good News Translation
While I was with them, I kept them safe by the power of your name, the name you gave me. I protected them, and not one of them was lost, except the man who was bound to be lost–so that the scripture might come true.
When I was with them I kept them safe and watched over them in your name that you have given me. Not one of them was lost except the one destined for destruction, so that the scripture could be fulfilled.
27 In fact, this has happened here in this very city! For Herod Antipas, Pontius Pilate the governor, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel were all united against Jesus, your holy servant, whom you anointed. 28 But EVERYTHING THEY DID WAS DETERMINED BEFOREHAND ACCORDING TO YOUR WILL.
– Acts 4:27-28
Which of us created ourselves and infused our lives with the factors that determine who and what we are, as well as what we do as a result of who and what we are?
Consider these words…
“Psychologists need to comprehend that the logic of the physical universe – indeed, any possible universe – rules out free choice, and irrespective of the indeterminism of quantum theory. Why? Well, because who a person happens to be from a moral point of view cannot possibly be under his or her control. To be responsible for how they act they would have to be responsible for how they are, and to be responsible for how they are they would have had to have created themselves, and no one can be the causa sui, the ultimate ‘cause of oneself’, because in order to do so, he or she would have to be in every sense his or her own parent, his or her own author. If you try to argue that a person has created himself or herself then you have to posit an earlier self that creates the later self, but then you note that the earlier self could not have created itself but must have been created by an earlier self, and you end up with an infinite regress of selves needed (Strawson, 1994). Yet, ultimately for libertarian free will you need an initial creator self, a ‘prime mover’ self, which is impossible to get to because how would it have come into existence?”
– Excerpt from an essay on free will
“Present-day libertarians tend to pin their hopes for free will on quantum mechanics, but the random chance of quantum theory has no connection whatsoever to the concept of ethical freedom; the freedom to choose, the freedom to will. Doing something because (hypothetically) a subatomic particle randomly moves inside your skull offers no more freedom than doing something because genes or culture dictate it. The quantum event may be uncaused, but your (hypothetical) resulting action would itself be caused by the quantum event. The action is therefore not uncaused, and it is most certainly not chosen or willed. Indeterminism cannot save free will for humankind, because if the mind is, at least in part, undetermined, then some things ‘just happen’ in it outside the laws of causation for which, by definition, nobody and nothing is responsible. An individual is not responsible if their actions are caused, because those actions were ultimately set in motion before they were even born. But an individual is also not responsible if some of their actions are uncaused, because those actions just came out of nowhere. To be freely choosing an individual would have to be free from both deterministic effects and indeterministic effects. Free from both A and not-A, as a logician would put it. To be freely choosing you cannot have A, but you cannot have not-A either; free choice requires something that cannot logically exist in this or any possible universe.”
– Excerpt from an essay on free will
No choice or decision is ever made in a vacuum “free” of all internal and external factors that influence and determine that choice or decision. And sovereign over all those factors is God’s rule. By command or permission every factor is always where, when, and how God wills it to be.
The true definition of “free” will is that you can make choices and decisions free of any internal and external influencing factors. That is not possible. Only if you existed in a vacuum free from all such factors could you really make a free choice or decision. But if you did exist in such a state you would not exist at all.