Monday, May 31, 2010

Arminius on the Compound and Divided Sense

Certainty properly is not an affection of an existing thing or of one about to happen, but of the mind certainly knowing or foreknowing that the thing exists or is about to exist: whence a transference is made to the event, -for it is the same that a thing will happen, and that it will certainly happen, -but that it may be signified to another that there is no reason to doubt of the event coming to pass. But necessity is an affection of the being, and adds a mode to the event, by which it is said that a thing will happen necessarily, and is opposed to the mode which is called "contingency". Therefore the same idea is not expressed, when it is said that a thing will happen certainly and necessarily; for the one word is only about futurition, the other about the mode also of futurition. This necessity is that of the consequent, by which a thing exists from its antecedent beginning and cause, so that it cannot not-exist from it: to which is opposed the contingency of the consequent: so that in no respect can these words be used about the same thing. But there is a necessity called by philosophers "the necessity of the consequence," which does not belong to a simple, but to a complex entity, according to syllogistic reasoning; from which cause it is also called syllogistic necessity: and this necessity exists in the whole legitimate arrangement of the syllogism, not i this or that part, whether premise or conclusion; unless it have also what they call the necessity of the matter, which falls in with the necessity of the consequent. The necessity of hypothesis, according to the nature of the hypothesis, will fall in with this or that. If the hypothesis be the antecedent principle and cause of the thing, it will be the same as the necessity of the consequent: but if it be the antecedent principle and cause of the conclusion only, it will be the necessity of the consequence.

But now, if our author wished to denote, from the immutability of the Divine purpose, and the supposition of the destined end, that the salvation or damnation is conlcluded of him who has been predestined to the one or the other, and indeed that they are concluded by a fair consequence; whence certainty may exist in his mind who accounts both premises true, nay, and does exist on account of the premises laid down; I have nothing to say against it. For they for whom salvation has been destined by the immutable purpose of God, will obtain salvation; nor shall it come to pass that they will not obtain salvation. Yet it does not follow from hence that they are necessarily saved: nor shall it come to pass that they will not obtain salvation. Yet it does not follow from hence that they are necessarily saved: for the word "necessarily" cannot be added to the conclusion by the necessity of the consequent. For example: "Whatever God has foretold will come to pass: God has foretold that Christ will die: Therefore Christ will die." The conclusion cannot be drawn, "Therefore Christ will die necessarily", unless the word had been added to the major in this manor "Whatever God has foretold will come to pass necessarily." But now the major will be denied: for it is sufficient to establish the truth of a prediction if that happens which God foretold would happen, even if it does not happen necessarily: nay, since the word "necessarily" adds a mode to the event, the event will not answer to the prediction, unless the necessity be either added in both places, or omitted in both.

But if- as the passage itself seems to require, and the forms of speech familiar to this author and others who concur with him appear to indicate- this be the sense of the author, -that from the presupposition of the immutability of God's purpose and of the destined end the salvation and death of the elect and reprobate necessarily exist, as from the antecedent principle and cause of the matter, which is the necessity of the consequent, that I shall altogether deny: for the predestination of those who are to be saved and damned remains unmoved, with the contingency of the consequent; that is, even if they be contingently saved and damned. Nay if by the Divine decree, no the necessary mode of salvation or damnation, but only salvation and damnation was decreed, then the execution does not answer to the decree, if the predestined are necessarily saved or damned. But, according to the confession of this author, that mode has not been settled beforehand: for, if it had been settled beforehand, the necessity would not now arise from the presupposition of the immutability of the purpose and destined end, but directly form the purpose and decree itself.

In order to make this plain, here are these syllogisms for you to look at: Whatever God had decreed to come to pass, that will come to pass: But God has decreed that this man be saved, that man damned: Therefore this man will be saved, that man damned. Here there is no necessity, except that of the consequence. But let it be in this form: "Whatever God has decreed to come to pass, that will necessarily come to pass: But God has decreed that this man be saved, that man damned: Therefore this man will necessarily be saved, and that one necessarily be damned. Thus is not a necessity of the consequence, but of the consequent; a necessity concluded not from the syllogistic form, but from the necessity of the matter; and that depends not upon any presupposition of the immutability of the decree, and of the destined end, but on the decree itself immediately. But the mayor in that syllogism is false; therefore there is no conclusion. But if anyone wishes to make the major true by this addition, -Whatever God has decreed to take place necessarily, this will take place necessarily, -then the minor will be false: But God has decreed that this man be necessarily saved, that one necessarily damned. Wherefore the conclusion will not follow, -Therefore this man will necessarily be saved, and that one necessarily be damned. The falsity of the minor will appear from my previous remarks, because then God will not save an damn freely. You will say that it does not follow for that God can freely produce an effect, which yet will arise necessarily, God willing to produce the effect by His irresistible omnipotence. I answer, that there is a contradiction in the adjunct, -that God produces an effect freely, and that it arises necessarily.

(James Arminius. Works of James Arminius. 1875 London Edition. Examination of Gomarus on Predestination. Volume 3. p 547-549)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Suarez on the Compound and Divided Sense

However, the action itself must not be counted among the things that are necessary for acting. This is evident per se, since otherwise one would not be asserting anything special about the causes under discussion; instead, one wold be making a claim that to all things - not only to all agents but to all entities as well- namely, that if they have a form whereby they are constituted with such and such an esse or under such an such a notion, then the consequent that they are of that sort follows necessarily. For just as if someone has whiteness, then he is necessarily white, so too if someone exercises an action, then he necessarily effects something-where this is merely the necessity of the consequence (as they say): that is, a conditioned necessity, and not the necessity of the consequent-that is, an absolute necessity. The former kind of necessity is irrelevant in the present context, since causes cannot be distinguished with respect to it.1 Therefore, in order for the discussion to be dealing with true and proper necessity, the action itself must not be included when a cause is said to act necessarily once all the required things are present.

From this it follows, a fortiori, that whatever is posterior to the action or consequent upon it must not be included either. This is obvious per se. Indeed, properly speaking, nothing of the sort can be said to be necessary for the action; rather, it is said to be necessary given the action. (Fransisco Suarez. On Efficeint Causality. p 271. Translated by Freddoso.)

1 It is trivially and universally true that necessarily, if a given agent acts, then it acts. In the present context, by contrast, we are interested in the conditions under which it is true that a given agent acts necessarily, where the necessity attaches to that action itself absolutely.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

William Lane Craig on the Compound and Divided Sense

“When addressing the question of whether it is within one’s power to prevent some future event, it is important to keep clear that the distinction between the sensus divisus and the sensus composites. In sensu composito I cannot prevent a future event, for this is self-contradictory. But in sensu diviso I can prevent some future event, for I have contra-causal power to bring about future events. Similarly it is not within one’s power to postvent a past event in sensu composito because this is self-contaditory. Since backward causation is metaphysically impossible, we do not generally have it within our power to affect the past even is sensu division, thus generating our intuitions of the unalterability of the past as over against the future. But where what is past is conditioned by what is future (for example, future contingent propositions’ being antecedently true), I have the power to act in such a way that the past would have been different than it in fact was. (Craig. Divine Foreknowledge and Human Freedom. p 159)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Molina on the Compound and Divided Sense

“The second error has to do with the composed sense, namely, we should not claim that because the divine foreknowledge already exists beforehand, Peter is in reality not able not to sin, as if because of the preesisting divine knowledge he has lost something of his freedom and power not to sin in reality, should he so will. For I would not hesitate to call this sort of interpretation an error from the point of view of the faith.

Indeed, even though that knowledge did exist beforehand, it was just as truly within his power not to sin as it would have been had that knowledge not existed, and he was just as truly able to refrain from the act in light of which he was foreknown to be a future sinner as he would have been had that knowledge not existed, as has been explained; thus this interpretation is not the one that the theologians have in mind.

Rather, they are claiming, absolutely correctly, that given the divine foreknowledge, Peter is not able in the composed sense not to sin, because these two things, namely, Peter’s being such that he is not going to sin, and God’s knowing that he is going to sin, cannot both obtain together. But if, as is now truly possible, he were not going to sin, then that knowledge would not have existed in God, and so that knowledge, which would not have existed if, as is possible, Peter were not going to sin, does not in any way prevent Peter’s now being able in the divided sense not to sin, in just the way he would have been able not to sin had such knowledge not existed beforehand. (Concorida. Disputation 52. P186. Translated by Fredosso.)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Bonaventure on the Compound and Divided Sense

Moreover, for an understanding of the objections it must be noted, that there is a twofold necessity, namely, the absolute, and the respective. An absolute necessity, which is opposed to contingency, is said (to be) the necessity of the consequent. A respective necessity is said (to be) the necessity of the consequence, and this is not opposed to the contingent. For something contingent necessarily follows, so that if one walks, it necessarily follows, that he moves.

It must be said, therefore, that in the foreknown there is no absolute necessity, but only (a necessity) of consequence, because there necessarily follows: ‘God foreknows this, therefore this will be’....

4. To that which is objected per impossibile, that if it could be otherwise, It could fail; it must be said, that1 falsehood [falsitas] comes from the discord of an intellect regarding the cognized, similarly the potency to fail [potential fallendi] from the potency to be discordant [potential discordandi]. Therefore, I say, that since (it is) necessarily foreknown: it follows after the Foreknowledge, for that reason they cannot be discordant: and for that reason It never fails, nor can It fail.

5. What, therefore, is objected, whether it can be otherwise; it must be said, that it can be otherwise, because God could have foreknown (it) otherwise; and when it is posited, that it is otherwise, it is posited, that He foreknows (it) otherwise. Therefore when it is inferred: ‘it can be otherwise, than it is; and God thus foreknew (it): therefore (this can be) otherwise, than God foreknows (it)’, the conclusion must be distinguished: because it can be understood separately [divisim], and thus it is true: and the sense is: ‘God foreknows that this comes forth’, and ‘it is possible, that it does not come forth’; but if conjunctively, (it is) false; and the sense is: ‘it is possible, that God foreknows (it) in one manner, and it turns out in another’. And there is a fallacy of composition in that (manner of) proceeding, just as here: ‘the one running can not move: therefore it is possible, that someone runs and does not move’; (which) does not follow....

I. Each opinion which either denies the liberty of the creature, to save the Divine Foreknowledge, or takes away the Foreknowledge, to save the liberty, it is established by the Catholic Faith, that it must be rejected as impious....

It is entirely established, that that causality, by which God influences [influit in] second causes and cooperates with the free acts of intellectual creatures, is congruent with the nature of (free) agents and does not take away (their) liberty, but rather posits (it); yet concerning the manner, in which this concursus comes to be and in which liberty is saved, there is a debate among Catholic theologians. — However, the first difficulty is evidently solved here together with the common sentence, by employing that distinction between the necessity of a consequent and of a consequence, which the Catholic Schools received from (St. Severinus) Boethius under various names.

The words of (St.) Boethius (On the Consolation of Philosophy, Bk. V, pros. 6) are these: « There are two necessities: one simple, as that it is necessary, that all men are mortal; the other of a condition, such as whether you know that someone is walking, when it is necessary that he is walking. For it is not possible, that anyone knew, that it was other than it was known. But this condition draws with it that simple (necessity) least of all. For its own nature does not cause the latter necessity, but the adjunction of a condition (does). For no necessity compels that one walking voluntarily go forward, though it is necessary, however, that when he walks, he goes forward ». Then the same author employs this distinction to demonstrate, that the Divine Providence does not injure created liberty.

II. The solutions to nn. 2 and 3 are founded on the distinction of a thing exiting in act [rei actu existentis] and of a thing going to be [rei futurae]. In regard to the existing thing the sentence of Aristotle is true, that everything which is, when it is, it is necessary that it is, by a necessity, namely, which is consequent from the supposition, that the subject now exists (whence it is called by the Seraphic Doctor « the necessity as now »), because existence excludes non-existence; but it is not true of that, which is not yet, but is going to be, because in virtue of the now nothing is posited in the thing about the subject. — In the 5th opposed argument there is supposed, that something has been foreknown by God, and yet is not going to be. To elude the sophism of the objections, the Seraphic Doctor uses the celebrated distinction of the composed and the divided, as is clear from the text. St. Thomas (here in a. 5, in reply to n. 5) solves the same objection, by employing the distinction, « that (the proposition) can concern the saying, and/or the thing; and if it concerns the saying, it is true (that is, that it is necessary, that everything known by God, be), and if it concerns the thing, it is false. (Bonaventure. Sentance Commentary. Distinction 38.)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Molinism and Possible Worlds

In Steve Hays' response to William Lane Craig (here), he raised some arguments against Molinism, which I have been attempting to address. This post is a continuation of our exchange.

So the Molinist God instantiates a sinful world even though he hates sin, and sin is unnecessary. Doesn’t sound very coherent to me. Much less a promising theodicy.

It’s no contradiction or incoherence to permit something you hate, so long as you have good reason to do so. I suppose one could read a contradiction into this by understanding 'instantiates' in some way that denies or undermines LFW.

Yes, God is willing to permit sin to obtain the greater good.

What’s the theodicean value of the adjective (“ultimately”) in relation to the noun (“sin”)? How does the adjective magically exculpate God on Molinist grounds?

On Molinist grounds, ultimate responsibility is essential to moral culpability. Sometimes people are responsible for the downstream consequences of what they do when they are ultimately responsible, and sometimes they are not. But UR is and must always be a factor (even if an upstream one).

If that’s your argument, then sin is a necessary means to a second-order good. Felix culpa. Very supralapsarian of you.

The order of the decrees has more to do with the arrangement of events in a specific world rather than the selection on one whole world over another.

God does have an ultimate goal; His glory. He had multiple ways of achieving His goal; His wisdom and power ensured He would reach His end regardless of the many paths He could have taken or multiple possible worlds He could have created. In some of those worlds, freedom to sin, but not sin itself, was a necessary means to obtaining God's ultimate goal.

Supralapsarianism seems to require, as a brute fact, the election/reprobation of specific individuals to glorify God. Supralapsarianism hardly seems consistent with the idea of possible worlds. If God decrees the outcome first, what other outcome could there be? If the outcome requires certain specific means, what other means could there be?

Well, when I defined choice as a mental resolution (quoting Kane), you took exception.

Perhaps you are confusing me with Robert. I don’t have a problem with Kane’s definition for what Kane uses it for. I just don’t think it should be used for exegesis of scripture.

The libertarian choices of Judas have real world consequences for the existence and choices of other libertarian agents. So do his libertarian choices actualize other agents in the transaction? Do his choices instantiate the network of consequences, including all of the other parties to the same transaction?

What is “causally” possible for merely possible Judas? Does Judas cause things to happen in a possible world? In what sense?

Aren’t possible worlds timeless objects? So there is no actual cause/effect sequence in play.

I consider possible worlds as God's knowledge of what He can do and enable us to do. Thus God’s power to make Judas and make Judas such that Judas can do A or B, underwrites possible worlds with Judas doing A and Judas doing B.God's knowledge relates to truth and His power provides the basis of truth. Each possible world is a fully described set of facts (undergirded by God's power to do and enable us to do the things supporting those facts). Possible worlds include not only events, but relations between events; if two events are related determinately God knows it as a determinate relationship, if two events are related indeterminately, God knows the relationship as such.

God's knowledge is atemporal but He knows things that can have temporal and causal relationships. So it's wrong to deny time and causal relationships are 'in play' in possible worlds.

Do you simply mean “cause” in the sense that one fictional character causes something to happen in the narrative?

Not really.

So possible Judas didn’t consciously choose to be instantiated in a world where he betrays Christ. If so, then in what sense is his choice a “real” choice? Do merely possible, unconscious agents make “real” choices?

Possible conscious agents do not make real choices, they make possible choices.

ME: “It’s as if God created multiple actual worlds in multiple dimensions and sees how things turn out, except, God doesn’t actually have create those worlds and yet His knowledge corresponds to what they would have been if He had.”

STEVE: i) And how is the Molinist God in a position to see how things turn out?

What God knows He knows immediately; His epistemology is unique to Him so we cannot explain it.

Is he just a spectator who watches what nonexistent agents would do in any given situation?

Well, the hypothetical situation includes hypothetical creation and concurrence, but the truth that “Bob would do X” is logically prior to God’s middle knowledge of the same.

Why is there anything at all, much less anything in particular, that a nonexistent agent would do?

The alternative seems to be believing that if God created Bob in such and such circumstances, Bob would do nothing. But that’s implausible. The fact that you responded to my last post leads me to believe it was true that you would respond to my last post.

The question, rather, is whether the Molinist God ran a battery of hypothetical scenarios past hypothetical Judas so that Judas had a say as to which possible world God would instantiate. Unless hypothetical Judas was shown the options, how was he in any position to give informed consent?

But, of course, you’re forced to admit that this isn’t tenable, for a merely possible agent is not a conscious agent. Therefore, Judas didn’t get to vote on which real world he’d find himself in. It was the luck of the draw (as Arminian critics of Calvinism are wont to say), and he had the ill-fortune to wind up on a world where he betrays Christ and presumably goes to hell. Not his lucky day.

Explain how that’s an improvement over what Arminians and Molinists find so odious in Calvinism.

On the one hand, it's wrong to say that since Judas didn't choose every aspect in the universe, he didn't make any choices at all. On the other hand, some forms of Molinism are not necessarily opposed to Calvinistic unconditional election.

The issue you raise could be avoided by either appealing to trans-world damnation of all that will actually be damned, or by saying God's decree of who to create precedes middle knowledge. In such cases, the objections to Calvinism still hold good.

Or the issue could be embraced as an asset rather than a liability, by those who deny the possibility of trans-world damnation and place election prior to the decree to create this or that world. In such cases, such objections to Calvinism must be dropped.

Finally, a mediating position says God choose which possible world to create, which entails election. This last position falls outside of Calvinism as defined by Dort, yet still contains a different type of unconditional election. In such cases, only certain aspects of the objections to Calvinism may be maintained. Specifically, ultimate responsibility and supra-lapsarian reprobation remain significant differences between Molinism and Supra-lapsarian Calvinism.

ii) Even if Molinism were coherent, why should we believe it? Molinism is not a revealed truth. At most, the Bible reveals that God has counterfactual knowledge, not middle knowledge.

So what evidence do you have that Molinism is true? It’s not a truth of reason. It’s not entailed by a truth of reason. It’s not an empirical fact.

Molinism reconciles God's providence with man's responsibility in a way that permits the natural reading of scriptural passages. To me, this is a very valuable use of philosophy, if not it's most valuable use.

i) How do you define a “cause”? What’s your theory of causation?

The source of action. I like Suarez's expansion of Aristole's views on causation. But that level of detail seems unneeded for our present purposes. The simple necessary/sufficient cause distinction will work.

ii) Even if your metaphysical distinction were tenable, how is that morally germane? How does your metaphysical distinction between sufficient conditionality and sufficient causality ipso facto exonerate the Molinist God?


iii) How does that stand in contrast to Calvinism? What theory of causation do you attribute to Calvinism?

Calvinists seem to believe our actions have sufficient causes.

iv) Apropos (iii), why is Molinism able to distinguish between sufficient conditionality and sufficient causality, but Calvinism is not?

Logic, logical relationships, and logical deductions are not the source of action. So just because we can deduct what man will do, given God's foreknowledge, that does not mean we that action is causally determined. In Molinism, people have contra-causal powers, but God knows how people would and will use their ability. In causal determinism; people have no such ability.

Peter Lombard on the Compound and Divided Sense

But regarding that, which has been said above, namely that God’s Foreknowledge cannot fail, it was customarily opposed by certain (authors) in this manner: God foreknew this one (was) going to read, and/or something of this kind; but it can be, that he does not read: therefore it can be otherwise than God foreknew, therefore God’s foreknowledge can fail. — Which is entirely false. Of course it can (be) that something does not come to be, and yet that it has been foreknown to come to be; yet for this reason God’s Foreknowledge cannot fail, because if that were not to come to be, neither would it have been foreknown by God to come to be.

But they still urge the question saying: either it can come to be [fieri] otherwise, than God has foreknown, or not otherwise; if not otherwise: therefore necessarily all shall turn out (as God foreknows it) [cuncta eveniunt]; if, however, otherwise: therefore God’s Foreknowledge can fail and/or be changed. But it can come to be otherwise, because it can come to be otherwise, than it comes to be; but thus does it come to be, as it has been foreknown: therefore it can come to be otherwise, than it has been foreknown.

To which we say, that that expression, namely: “it can come to be otherwise, than God foreknew”, and (those) of this kind, can cause a multiple understanding, to (signify): “what God foreknew cannot be”, and “it is impossible, that what God has foreknow not be”, and “it is impossible, that all the foreknown which come to be, not be”, and (expressions) of this kind. For these can be understood conjointly [coniunctum], so that there is an implicit condition, and disjointly. For if you understand: “it cannot come to be otherwise, than God has foreknown”, that is, so that each cannot be together, namely that ‘God thus will have foreknown it to come to be, and it comes to be otherwise’, you understand (it) truly. However, if you understand (it) through a disjunction, as to say, that ‘this cannot turn out otherwise, than it did turn out and1 in that manner God foreknew (that it was) going to be’, it is false. For it can turn out otherwise, than it did turn out, and yet God foreknew that (it was) going to be in this manner.

Similarly also the other determination, namely, ‘it is impossible, that that not turn out, which God foreknew, and/or though He foreknew (it)’; if you understand (it) conjointly, you speak the truth; if disjointly, a falsehood. Thus also even this: ‘it is impossible, that everything which comes to be not have been foreknown’, that is, that each cannot be together, namely, ‘that it come to be’, and ‘(that) it not have been foreknown’, this is the true sense. However if you say, that ‘God could not foreknow everything which comes to be’, it is false. For He could have caused it not to come to be, and thus it would not have been foreknown. (Lombard. Sentances. Distinction 38 part 2.)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Four Flavors of Causal Determinism

As an Arminian and Molinist, I specifically oppose all forms of causal determinism. If there’s one aspect of Calvinism I object to, it’s causal determinism. Yet some Calvinists are hesitant to say they are causal determinists. This post is to lay out the various forms of causal determinism; Naturalism, Occationalism, Concurrence and Mainline Calvinist Causal Determinism; all of which I oppose.

Based on knowledge derived from the physical and social sciences, the world view that is naturalism holds that human beings are fully included in nature. Science tells us that we are connected and united, in each and every aspect of our being, to the natural world. There is, under naturalism, nothing supernatural about us which places us above or beyond nature, but this is something to be celebrated, not feared. Practically speaking, naturalism holds that an individual’s development and behavior are entirely the result of prior and surrounding conditions, both genetic and environmental. Naturalism, therefore, denies that persons have contra-causal free will - that something within them is capable of acting as a first cause. But this isn't a problem, it's just how things are. (link)

Naturalism is form of causal determinism, but its not an option for Calvinists. The Westimister Confession states “God has endued the will of man with that natural liberty, that is neither forced, nor, by any absolute necessity of nature, determined good, or evil.” (link) Likewise the WCF states “The bodies of men, after death, return to dust, and see corruption: but their souls, which neither die nor sleep, having an immortal subsistence, immediately return to God who gave them” So the WCF rules out natural determinism and asserts that man has an immortal soul, which in turn rules out naturalism. (link)

Occasionalism is a philosophical theory about causation which says that created substances cannot be efficient causes of events. Instead, all events are taken to be caused directly by God himself. (A related theory, which has been called 'occasional causation', also denies a link of efficient causation between mundane events, but may differ as to the identity of the true cause that replaces them). (link)

Occationally, Calvinists are occasionalists, but this view has not gained widespread support among Calvinists.

Concurrence is similar to occationalism but rather than denying the efficiency of secondary causes, Molinia’s Catholic opponents (the Dominicans) said God's concurrence with secondary causes determines the effects.

Suarez describes concurrence as: the concurrence is a certain entity that emanates from the First Cause and is received in the secondary cause, bringing the secondary cause to final completion [as an agent] and determining it to produce a given effect. The reason why this concurrence is said to be something "in the manner of principle" is that it is the secondary cause's power to act or, at least, it formally brings that power to completion.

The First Cause's concurrence is something in the manner of a principle and infused power ...... The concurrence begins, as it were, with the conferral of this power and yet does not consist in this conferral [alone], but rather proceeds further right to the creature's very own action, with the result that what influences the action immediately is not only the power communicated to the secondary cause but also the divine and uncreated power itself. (link)

Very few Calvinists today hold to this opinion, but it is a form of causal determinism.

Mainline Calvinistic Causal Determinism
Francis Turretin, Jonathan Edwards and Charles Hodge articulated the view that man’s actions are determined by his motives, reasoning, state of mind, emotions and feelings. Unlike naturalism, man has an immaterial soul, which includes man’s intellect and will. Man does has some agency and efficiency; man does act, but he doesn’t have contra-causal powers (the ability to do otherwise than he does). Edwards states that the will is determined by "the strongest motive" and states that "the will always is, as the greatest apparent good is" and that "the will follows the last dictate of understanding".

Turretin, Edwards and Hodge relied on Luther and Calvin’s groundwork by developed the system somewhat. While they disagreed with each other on semantics (for example Edwards used the terms ‘metaphisical, philosophical or moral necessity, Hodge preferred the term certain of things and avoided using the world ‘necessity’ so as to avoid confusion with naturalism), they agreed with each other on the major substantive issues. Today there view is popularized by authors like RC Sproul using the catch phrase that “we choose according to our strongest desire”.
Turretinfan also seems to fall into this general category, although he provides further explanation. He says “that reason demonstrates that the laws of cause and effect apply not only to the physical world but also to the spiritual world.” (link) He seems to allow not only for man to have an immaterial soul, but also, there can be spiritual (verses physical) causation. In a world were some people underarticulate their views out of fear of criticism, I admire Turretinfan’s courage, even thought I disagree with his views.

Beyond these four views, many Calvinists simply reject libertarian free will, which seems to imply causal determinism without specifying how our acts are determined. Still others seem to hold to libertarian free will in antinomy with their other views. Finally, some people have attempted to reconcile the 5 points of Calvinism with libertarian free will via a special type of Molinism.