- Many (most?) people get part of the way to clearing up the discrepancy and simply quit. This site that I really respect just isn't trying when it says:
Scripture is clear that God knows the future (Matthew 6:8; Psalm 139:1-4) and has total sovereign control over all things (Colossians 1:16-17; Daniel 4:35). The Bible also says that we must choose God or be eternally separated from Him. We are held responsible for our actions (Romans 3:19; 6:23; 9:19-21).How these facts work together is impossible for a finite mind to comprehend (Romans 11:33-36)It's no wonder they can't figure it with that attitude. Just because a task is impossibly big doesn't mean we shouldn't try at all. It just means that we have to be careful since the guard rails are off.
- There exists in the sinful mind a dichotomy between the two ideas, that because there can be only one sovereign, the two people or ideas must be in opposition. The Arminian says "Free will is given by God and He doesn't tamper with it. I have no scripture to back this up but otherwise men are robots." The HyperCalvinist says "Well God is sovereign therefore there is no such thing moral agency. He directly causes all things, even men to sin." and the moderate Calvinist says "God establishes moral agency by his sovereignty but beyond that no man can know." In all cases there is a preconception that the two ideas are not similar but different in a fundamental way. Parallel lines that meet only somewhere in heaven. I reject this dichotomy too. Now that I have said that you probably see the answer I'm driving toward.
- There is the seeds of this idea/proposition already in place, and in orthodox soil. The Westminster Confessions says this in chapter 3
"God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so as thereby neither is God the author of sin; nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established."
There could not be a more perfect analogy for the problem of God's sovereignty and human responsibility. The problem resolves, or should I say vanishes, when viewed properly, and yet becomes formidable when viewed improperly.