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Do angels have free will?


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#1 Jeremy

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 08:45 PM

I remember hearing from a Greek priest, whose name I cannot recall, in Redondo Beach, California, say that angels do not have free will. If angels do not have free will, how could Lucifer and the angels break from God's will as recounted in Revelations?

As an OCA Catechumen, I know such questions are unimportant to spiritual Christian development, merely satisfying a curious mind and not purifying a sinful heart.

#2 Mediterranean

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 08:58 PM

Do angels have free will?



Yes.....angels have free will.

#3 Father David Moser

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Posted 22 September 2009 - 01:32 AM

Yes.....angels have free will.


Agreed, the angelic host do have free will for without free will Lucifer could not have rebelled. However, the nature of that free will is different from the nature of the free will of human beings in that angels are bodiless and we have a changeable body. See St John of Damascus "The Orthodox Faith" for a further discussion of this.

Fr David Moser

#4 Mediterranean

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 09:10 PM

Ok, we agreed about free will but did fallen angels have feel repentance?

#5 Father David Moser

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 09:22 PM

Ok, we agreed about free will but did fallen angels have feel repentance?


According to St John, no, once they had fallen, the angels were not capable of repentance because repentance implies changeableness and, again according to St John, changeableness is linked to the body (and angels are "bodiless" in that sense).

Fr David Moser

#6 Mediterranean

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Posted 25 September 2009 - 10:21 AM

But all what God create He didn't create for death......I think tahat everything have a chanse becouse Christ has indeed been raised from the dead.

#7 Paul Cowan

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 09:45 PM

God told us to choose Life. If we or the angels choose something other than Life, then that was / is our / their choice. He did not foreordain either of us to rebel against Him. Since we have, we also have make a decision to return. If we are given over to a reprobate mind which God will honor, then our fate is sealed.

Paul

#8 Michael 'Anthony' Cornett

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 11:35 PM

Perhaps I learned incorrectly, but what was told to me by my priest was that Angels DID have freewill before the fall (rebellion of Lucifer, etc). After the fall, this was taken away or restricted. Is this off? I will look up the quoted sources now that I have better access to this than when I first heard this. Thanks!

#9 Michael 'Anthony' Cornett

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 11:52 PM

So if I understand Fr. David's recounting of St. John correctly, angels continue to have freewill, but cannot repent of the prior action of a select number of them (Lucifer's revolt), because that would require change (which is limited to beings with bodies)...

Please clarify the following (out of my ignorance, I can't seem to fathom):

• Why would angels who didn't take part in the action of revolt need to repent for the actions of others?
• Is not the mere action of freewill 'change' itself? To choose to do something that you are not already doing would require change, no?

Thank you!

#10 Fr Raphael Vereshack

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 01:37 PM

According to St John, no, once they had fallen, the angels were not capable of repentance because repentance implies changeableness and, again according to St John, changeableness is linked to the body (and angels are "bodiless" in that sense).

Fr David Moser


Something very similar is in St Augustine's City of God where he carries on a discussion about the state of the angels almost through the entire book. The good angels basically make up the first ranks of the City of God while the bad angels (demons) make up the first rank of the Earthly City.

In Christ- Fr Raphael




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