Religious people say we have free will in that god has the knowledge of whatever will happen but he doesn't cause our actions, we have a choice. I did an act of sin out of my own choice; god was only aware of the choice I will make. I think that totally makes god not really the ultimate creator. Here's why. When I make the choice of committing a sin,I am creating my own will, I am creating something god didn't create. My act of choice was my own creation, not god's creation. Then it follows that there exists atleast one thing in the universe which is not gods creation. If that is the case, god ceases to be the creator of everything. He ceases to be "the God". On the other hand, if God is the creator of everything, including my choice, then I don't really have a choice. It is an illusion. God has engineered me in such a way that I would inevitably end up making I choice that I was destined for.

  • 1
    Since it is God who gave the free will he originated what comes out of it. But this is not a site for debating semantics of "create" and "originate".
    – Conifold
    Commented May 7 at 5:13
  • Does this answer your question? Does the notion of an all-powerful God conflict with the idea of free will?
    – ac15
    Commented May 7 at 15:53
  • Since different religions impute different characteristics to God, this will probably get better answers if you pick one and ask on its relevant SE page.
    – g s
    Commented May 7 at 19:52

6 Answers 6


One of the classic example of gods in various religions is as parents mother or father or both. And if you stay in that picture, a child actually is the creation of it's parents. It's a direct copy of their genes and in many ways very similar to them, yet despite all of that the child nonetheless makes their own experiences and develops in it's own way not predetermined by it's parents.

So in that sense creation would be a the starting point, not the continuous modeling of everything everywhere all at once. And again staying in the picture of parents, they might continue to influence their creation after birth, but their influence is much more limited and relying on the consensus of the child, which itself grows in size, wisdom and power.


The phenomenon of dichotomy in nature is ever integral to any philosopical .notion/idea/framework, In whatever way eyed, there is never a time this phenomenon is inconspicuous to common sense.However , it comes into effect, by the potential of what is known as desire. ensuing desire to be the root cause of this mundane life .so for the good and evil to manifest through Free will , a choice of man with desire to attain something, unattained for God has nothing to attain anything unattained .. If man is a creature of mere instinct then all laws are irrelevant, That being so , any religion would not call for the man to choose good by conscious effort. If Incase God is a dictator,effecting all evil is impossible/improbable, then freewill is at stake.However if God is institutionalised to be the supreme beyond dichotomy of nature, the supreme creator could synchronally offer freewill to man


“Free will” is independent of the environment. A person in jail can have the free will to want to leave, yet not be able to leave. So it is absolutely possible to have free will where your free will has no effect.


The argument made depends on an unstated assumption: "If X makes a choice, Y must not have made that choice." If you make a choice, then God cannot have made that choice.

For some definitions of these words, this is a reasonable assumption. For other definitions, it may be a poor assumption.

As a purely mathematical example, just because 2 is "even" does not mean 2 is not an "integer". Just because it's one thing does not mean it must be another.

What the argument does conclude is that there is a definition of free-will that one person can take which is incompatible with the definition of God that another person can take.

  • What are some other definitions where it is a poor assumption? You said "......just because 2 is "even" does not mean 2 is not an "integer".....". A more accurate way to say it is only if 2 is a number can it be even, if its not a number, there is no point in identifying it evenness or oddness... in the case of free will, in certain religions like Islam and Calvinism, imagining God as the creator of everything is an article of faith.. if that is the case, then free will is a sham in those religions, since God must by definition create your sins as well Commented May 11 at 16:44
  • @SaqlainSyed IT sounds an aweful lot to me like you have picked a definition of free will which is not compatable with some religions. Akin to your comments about my example where if 2 is not a number, it is meaningless to talk about its evenness, you may have picked a defintioin which is not compatible with your concept of God and there is no way to answer your question. Which is totally fine, as long as you remember others may not think the way you do, and may not define things the way you do. I have noticed that some people really struggle with God and free will, while others simply don't.
    – Cort Ammon
    Commented May 11 at 17:36
  • Personally, when I deal with others making ontological claims, like a religious person insisting we have freewill and yet god created everything, I like to approach it from a model-theoretic approach, which is what I did in the answer. Why? I find it fun and interesting. If I assume their statements are consistent, I ask how might I define things within the model such that their statements are consistent. My own opinions of what the 8 letters "free will" means may have to be sat aside for a bit while doing so. I'll bring them in later.
    – Cort Ammon
    Commented May 11 at 17:42
  • And, if I look at the linked answer in ac15's comment on your question, it looks like their answer is similar: the meaning of "free will" to one person may not be the same meaning of "free will" you are seeking to use.
    – Cort Ammon
    Commented May 11 at 17:44

By simplifying things, one could say that "free will" in general, is the ability one has to take part in the creation process, by acting. But, what will come out of these interventions, is not up to him/her, because God Is the Creator.


Whatever ways anyone can work using his/her freewill is already determined by God. Just imagine it as a computer program, whatever ways a person can act is defined by a number of IF cases. In which If condition it has to go is determined by free will of the person. The subsequent choices before him is again number of choices inside that IF condition. So a person cannot create a new condition, it is already created for him and inside each IF there is again number of sub IFs. So based on person's free will he is just deciding on which IF conditions and sub IF conditions he has to go.

And you cannot intend (to do anything) unless it is so willed by Allah, the Lord of all the worlds. Quran 81:29

And shown him the two highways? Quran 90:10

So broadly there are two highways, that is IF conditions, there are number of sub roads in each highways.

We showed him the Way: whether he be grateful or ungrateful (rests on his will). Quran 76:3

So the main IF will be deciding whether to be grateful or ungrateful to God.

  • If it is already determined by god, then the person is trivially not free.
    – Marriott
    Commented May 7 at 12:47
  • If a religious framework is built where god doesn't cause me to do evil and where I can will my own act of evil, then doesn't it necessarily follow that I have created something independently of "god"? In that case, the "god" of that religion precludes the attribute of being the creator of everything. In that sense, the person willing the act of evil has become a mini god. What do you say about that? Commented May 7 at 18:42

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .