chapter  7
Foreknowledge and freedom
Pages 19

This chapter discusses interest in God's foreknowledge: logical determinism, including future singulars, predestination and reprobation, human and angelic free will, and the problem of evil. Future singulars are of continuing interest in philosophy, since they give rise to problems in ethics as well as in epistemology. "Predestination" and "reprobation" cannot, unlike Kant's "usurpatory concepts" of fate and fortune, simply be ignored since they have immediate and vital application: It is an important truth about humans that some are predestinate, others reprobate. God's foreknowledge gave rise for Thomas, to knotty problems concerning human free will. John Mackie makes the Leibnizian point that God could have chosen a world in which humans, like the good angels, freely managed to avoid making the wrong choices. The problem of evil is one that St. Thomas is aware of: It seems that God does not exist; because if one of two contraries be infinite, the other would be altogether destroyed.