12.2 Life of created beings
One essential corollary of Postulate 7 concerns
the sort of things that God can create given his nature determined by this and previous
postulates. Theism says that all life originates from God. From this, we have the
Argument from Life Itself, which concludes that created beings cannot have entirely
their own life in themselves. God cannot make created beings to have life in themselves.
Suppose that it were possible that
We saw in Chapter 9 that God cannot create lovable beings that
are not distinct from himself. The logic here, again, is that he can certainly create
beings that live from themselves but there is no point in it apart from them as
tools, because they would not be loved by him since they would be an essential part
of himself. His love is unselfish and cannot love only itself.
- God did create something that lived from itself.
- That thing would have as one of its attributes life itself.
- That thing would have as one if its attributes God.
- God is One (by Postulate 2),
we should conclude:
- That thing would not be distinct from God.
Applying this logic to the Christian quotation of the footnote at the beginning
of this chapter, we would have to conclude that Jesus, since he has life in himself,
is therefore not distinct from God. That he is of the same substance as God is the
orthodox position in that religion.
This above reductio argument implies that created beings do not, and
cannot, have life in themselves. There is no elementary particle and no fundamental
energy that is its own source of capacities for change. From the previous chapters,
we conclude that finite objects do not have being in themselves nor do they have
love in themselves. In theism, these conclusions are not independent claims after
all, since Gods being is love, and that love is life itself.