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On Free Choice of the Will by Saint Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Williams - Book Report/Review Example

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As the paper outlines, from Augustine’s view on the free choice of will, he believes that free will does exist and that it is upon the human beings to choose whether to be good or bad. He also argues that the saved people are in a way kind of programmed by God to be saved even before they were born…
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On Free Choice of the Will by Saint Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Williams
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Augustine persists that wrongdoing is a substance of free will at its cause, where he sounds sensible and is the least uncertain. He further stresses this by detaching wrongdoing from God’s cause. All that is God-made is good according to Augustine, and for that reason, he says God cannot be the cause of evil. He argues that evil is committed in the act of free will of humanity, and adds that it can also be in the free will of angles, but not God. On the other hand, his persistence about God's actions of goodwill being by God’s grace seems to disagree with his own affirmation on the choice of free will. While God should not be the one to blame for wrongdoing, God is given all the praise and glory for good, despite the bad deeds committed by those who have done things according to the goodwill. Therefore, people should be blamed for the bad things they do and cause, but do not deserve any recognition for whatever good they do.
According to Augustine, people’s capability to operate according to their own free will has been seriously weakened by the obsession and desires. They lack the strength to control their needs, so they are controlled and driven by lust. Augustine believes that lust is one of the biggest sins of all and that it troubles very many people, who end up giving in to it readily and gladly. This is proof of the weakness of free will. Where Augustine makes outstanding points on the way flesh desires directly disagreeing with the spirit, the way he argues that we behave in a good manner by God’s grace is in direct disagreement with his persistence that evil is a deed of free will. If we are made good by God, then why cannot the devil be the cause of sin, when we act badly? As Augustine insists that we as human beings have free will, it means we are responsible for the bad and good actions that we do, as we are the ones making the choices and decisions. Therefore, our own actions have nothing to do with God’s pre-determined salvation.
Finally, Augustine appears to be arguing that, the presence of evil in the world is required. The reason is to avoid a greater evil, which could come without them. The up short appears to mean that, the evil we get is approved by God because the options are far worse. In other words, we can say, “the-evils-are-required-to-prevent-greater-evil” solution. He gives examples of a hangman who should be considered most cruel and yet, he holds an obligatory post in the law midst. He also gives an example of the prostitutes. They can be termed as the most disgusting and dirty. If you removed them from human affairs, everything will be unsettled due to lust. Read More
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