Mike Leake on Do Angels Have Free Will Like Humans Do?

“How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?” Though no evidence is found that this was an actual question asked during the medieval period, it has become a hallmark question to mock the scholasticism present in the Middle Ages. The idea is that while Constantinople was burning to the ground the Byzantine monks were consumed by this irrelevant question. There is, then, some level of danger associated with answering an inquiry in which the Bible seems to be unconcerned.

Yet, there can be some value in attempting to answer such questions. Do angels have free will? The exercise of answering that question could be helpful in understanding the very nature of free will as well as understanding a little more about the function and purpose of angelic beings. But we must acknowledge that we are on slippery ground. While some might proceed like a sumo-wrestler river-dancing on thin ice, I find it far better to be cautious in our approach.

The first place to begin is to consider the nature of free will itself. Before we can answer the question “do angels have free will,” we need to determine what is even meant by freedom of the will.

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SOURCE: Crosswalk, Mike Leake