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Two Irreconcilable Views of Freedom - Essay Example

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The paper "Two Irreconcilable Views of Freedom" describes that both Pelagius and Augustine were able to show discrepancies in each other’s view, but neither of these men attempted to deal with the problems associated with free will that arose ever before their arguments could be of value…
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Two Irreconcilable Views of Freedom
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Download file to see previous pages Augustine’s views would be adopted by the church, while Pelagius’ view would be called heretical. Of course, Pelagius obviously would have viewed himself in a different light: “There can be no doubt that Pelagius saw himself as a defender of the faith” (Evans 236). Of course, the exact same thing can be said of Augustine. As history shows, though, these two men were intrinsically opposed to the viewpoints of each other, which is interesting considering that they both held more or less the exact same goal. Of course, by examining the two views of these writers, we can see exactly how incompatible these two views are with each other. Further examination of some of the basic assumptions held by both can also reveal much about both of these men and the very possibility of free will in a universe created by an omnipotent, omniscient God.
The view held by Pelagius follows along the lines of absolutely free will. According to Pelagius, people have the ability to choose to obey God. Since people are free to make this decision, then they held the ability to earn salvation without divine aid. Any modern Christian hearing this argument for the first time would be taken aback; this is in fact very contrary to what has been taught by Christians for centuries. However, it should be noted that this is because of the doctrine of original sin that was adopted by the church. In other words, it wasn’t always necessarily believed that the only way to receive salvation was through the acceptance of Jesus Christ.
This view has some very serious philosophical repercussions. It also levels charges at the accepted doctrine of original sin and free will that does seem to be difficult to explain. In the Pelagian view of original sin, Adam merely set a bad example for people to follow; he did not instil sin into mankind so that humans were necessarily a sinful creature: ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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