I would like to get a better understanding of the term "permissive will". I have read a couple threads on this forum related to this topic, but neither has given me a satisfactory understanding. I desire to know whether there are any Christian philosophers (e.g. Augustine or Aquinas) who discuss this subject, or, on a similar note, which theologians first introduced the term into discussion. At the moment, I contrast this term with two others, God's sovereign will and his declared will, per a conversation with a pastor.

  • Are you/the pastor able to articulate any differences between the permissive will and the declared will? Often those two, not necessarily by those names, are grouped together. If not that's fine, just curious. – Nathaniel is protesting Jan 16 '18 at 13:22
  • @Nathaniel Yes! His declared (or prescribed will) is recorded in Scripture and tells us what should happen. But not everyone follows God, and some people make evil choices. Thus God also has a permissive will, which allows those things that defy his declared will. – ktm5124 Jan 16 '18 at 21:06
  • @Nathaniel It makes a lot of sense to me to separate these two aspects of God's will. The two great commandments (love God and love your neighbor as yourself) are examples of his declared will, whereas the Fall from Paradise would be an example of his permissive will (although I am no theologian so correct me if I am wrong). – ktm5124 Jan 16 '18 at 21:11
  • @Nathaniel It's nice to receive a welcome from you on this forum. Salve! – ktm5124 Jan 16 '18 at 21:14
  • :) Good to see you here! Okay, I see the distinction being made. Do you happen to know what denomination this pastor belongs to? Catholic/Anglican/Presbyterian/etc.? – Nathaniel is protesting Jan 16 '18 at 21:50

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