Day 117: Love and Programming

John 13:21 – When Jesus had said this, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, “Most certainly I tell you that one of you will betray me.”

This verse may be showing us one of the big reasons why we aren’t allowed to know some parts of the future. You can probably think back and remember a time that if you would have known what was going to happen, you might have avoided doing something good. I often want to know the future, but sometimes a little knowledge of the future can be a bad thing without really knowing the whole picture from the perspective that God wants us to know it. God has given us a knowledge of many things in the future. It would be good for us to pay close attention to those things in the way in which He presents them. This is another reason why the Bible is so important to us.

Jesus, being God, could see the entire future clearly. He spoke the future into existence. But God is a person who is perfect in His ability to see the end goal. He could see beyond the pain and enjoy the love He would surround Himself with in the future. This is a small window into what predestination is like for God. The creation of those who would be evil, does not change the goodness of God. It does create suffering for Him as we read here. Jesus saw this suffering as a part of the path to joy that comes at the end.

Hebrews 12:2 – looking to Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising its shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

It is very important to remember, when talking about predestination, that those that God creates that will do evil, really want to do it. He doesn’t make them do what they don’t want to do. God, although He creates beings that will be evil, demonstrates that evil is is entirely against His character. This suffering is evidence that His character remains unchanged and suffering is the only path. God believes this suffering will be worth it in the end. We should follow in faith that God knows what He is doing. I say this to myself because I must confess that I have done far too much complaining about the suffering and have fallen in my faith that God has a plan and that the future is going to be very good. It is sometimes hard for us to come to conclude that God has the right to do what He thinks is best and that we don’t have the ability to completely understand Him. We definitely don’t have the right to accuse God of anything. He has clearly demonstrated His love to us, and we know that we have a choice.

Software Engineering: Software teaches us about predestination. Software demonstrates that not all destiny is in a “strait line.” It does this by showing us that an organism can hold its own decision making power that was planned by the programmer. As a programmer, I can program a “complex destiny”. I do this by relating the destiny to outside influence and by creating complex internal decision making. I can create such complex internal decisions that I don’t even know what the end result will be because I can’t keep track of all the decisions in my finite mind! On top of that, I can connect the program to an outside influence that I don’t understand or control (like human users). This is not what it is like for God who is all knowing. There is no code that God made that doesn’t work exactly as He knew it would. Being the programmer of all things, God has nothing to learn about like we do, and this is where many misunderstand power and knowledge of God. He sees all things from the beginning just to the end. He is predestinating by creating the program and allowing it to run. We see here He is capable of involving Himself with the program in a way that expresses His character, even if He must suffer to do it.