Flash Forward and Predestination

With the new season for television comes new shows to watch.  As if I don’t have enough to do, I started watching Flash Forward.  This show is awesome.  If you haven’t seen it, be warned spoilers follow.  The basic premise is everyone on the planet blacks out at the same time and for the same duration of time.  During the blackout, everyone has a vision of their future, six months away.  Some people’s lives are changed by the flash forward, as the visions are called.  Other people’s lives start to fall apart.  Still others did not see anything in their flash forward.  Why?  Several theories abound in the show: either they are asleep or dead.  As we find out in episode 2, the latter theory is valid as a sheriff is killed after she reveals she did not have a vision.

This got me thinking about predestination.  Some Christians think that our lives are plotted out, from beginning to end, by God.  That would definitely fit with God’s omnipotence, but it has a hard time reconciling with free will.  This is not the Lutheran understanding of predestination.  Lutherans don’t see God as some puppetmaster-in-the-sky.  Lutherans believe in what is called “single predestination” as opposed to “double predestination”.  Single predestination holds that the elect are predestined to salvation which comes from Christ’s death and resurrection.  No one is predestined to hell (double predestination).  Rather, damnation is a result of sin and rejection of God’s gift of grace and salvation.  In other words, salvation is a free gift, it is not earned, but we are capable of rejecting that free gift.

Back to Flash Forward.  Will people be able to escape their future?  Will they be able to change it somehow?  I don’t have the answers to that, but so far, I’m enjoying the show.


2 thoughts on “Flash Forward and Predestination

  1. Love it! you are wrestling with the same questions as I am in my blog (www.jennyrain.wordpress.com)… keep me posted as you further your theology on the show & if you post anymore about it – I’m a baptist – so we embrace the whole dynamic tension of free will/predestination co-existing with the other… haven’t quite figured out how yet 🙂

    Thanks for sharing your blog – I’ll definitely visit it more often!


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