foreknown – proginosko

Rom 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

In Romans 8, Calvinists like to point to the word “foreknow” as if it was a prediction from before time began. They even source etymology (word meaning or origins) to do so. They say the Greek word uses “pro” meaning “before” and “gnosis” meaning “to know”. They say “to know beforehand”, and then think they have won the debate.

But like all theological words used by the Calvinists, the word is being ripped from the original meaning. Take this instance of the same word “foreknow”. This is Paul speaking:

Act 26:4 My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first among mine own nation at Jerusalem, God knows;
Act 26:5 Foreknown of me from the beginning, if he would testify, that after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.

From these verses, does it appear God knew Paul from the beginning of time? After all: “God foreknew from the beginning.” If the Calvinist answers yes, he has a huge problem: I changed the words in these verses. Every reference to “the Jews” I changed to “God”. The real verses are as follows:

Act 26:4 My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first among mine own nation at Jerusalem, know all the Jews;
Act 26:5 Which knew me from the beginning, if they would testify, that after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.

This foreknowledge is not from the beginning of time. “Foreknew” just means that that someone started to know something sometime in the past. Even foreknowing something “from the beginning” is limited to the context. Beginning refers not to the beginning of history, but from Paul’s childhood (not even his birth). With this in mind does “foreknown” in Romans 8:29-30 prove the Calvinist’s point? The answer is a resounding “no”.

About christopher fisher

The blog is meant for educational/entertainment purposes. All material can be used and reproduced in any length for any purpose as long as I am cited as the source.
This entry was posted in Bible, Calvinism, God, Omniscience, Open Theism, Textual Criticism, Theology. Bookmark the permalink.

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