A while ago I received a forward from one of my Christian friends that talked about cause and effect. It was centered upon the writings of Edward Lorenze, a noted mathematician/meteorologist, that proposed; “Where a small change at one place in a deterministic system can result in large differences in a later state.
It was proposed that the flapping of a butterfly’s wings could produce a hurricane at another place at some distant time.” Or, more understandably; “That a ball placed upon the crest of a hill may run into one of several valleys, depending, among other things; slight differences in initial position.”
I am a lousy mathematician, and I have real trouble with the first option… the second seems reasonable.
The word “determinism” is used suggesting that everything, including every human act, is caused by something, and there is no free will. If it means that the butterfly had no control over the flapping of it’s wings, it hardly attests to the idea that God has given everyone (thing) the choice of it’s course of action.
Can we alternatively believe that our actions, however small can have a profound effects down line? It presents the real question; ” Is there a possibility that the most innocent move on our part can cause a catastrophic result ?”
Contrast this with the tale of Hans Brinker, the little boy who spies a small hole that developed in the town dyke, and he stuck his finger into it. His vision was that the whole town would be washed away if he did not take action. A town was saved that was to become a victim. Some things just don’t work themselves out on their own.
We know that “Cardinal Sins” ( Galations: 5 :19-21: Wrath, greed, sloth, pride lust, envy and gluttony seem to reflect some kind of causal rating system that God would employ in His assessment of seriousness. He judges not just the act itself, but the potential impact on others. He judges our acts of omission on the same scale.
Could it be that He despises inaction as well. We see “holes in dykes” all around us.
Back to the butterfly and the hurricane….Does he not have a better plan for butterflies?
Thank you for staying with me on this one……My head hurts……Yours?