Free Will Quiz


The paradox of human free will and God's infinite knowledge and power has troubled Jewish thinkers at every point in Jewish history. How much do you know about this debate?

Question 1 of :

Qustion 1. True or false: In antiquity, the different sects in Israel (Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes) all agreed about fate and determinism.

True False

Qustion 2. What does the Apocryphal writer Ben Sira believe about predetermination?

That God has predetermined human character from birth That humanity is divided into two antithetical groups, the godly and the sinners That human beings are free to choose their individual life paths and must not blame God for their transgressions All of these None of these

Qustion 3. Which Christian thinker's view on free will parallels Maimonides' view?

Thomas Aquinas Robert Audi Immanuel Kant Søren Kierkegaard

Qustion 4. Which modern thinker believed that the goal of a human's development is freedom and independence?

Martin Buber Abraham Joshua Heschel Rachel Adler Erich Fromm

Qustion 5. What does Abraham Joshua Heschel believe about free will?

The self does not belong to the physical world, and it possesses and controls the will The laws of Judaism reflect a conviction that the human power to choose is weaker than is generally supposed Humans have come to look at life as completely predetermined, and they need to free themselves from this view, whether or not it is true All of these None of these

Qustion 6. According to Maimonides, God’s "special providence" is limited to

Tzaddikim Human beings Jews Torah scholars

Qustion 7. Many kabbalists believe that God's providence does not extend to which of the following?

Animals Tzaddikim Hasidic Jews People who do not study Kabbalah

Qustion 8. Which of the following thinkers posited that having free choice is not as good a state as doing right automatically?

Nahmanides Hasdai Crescas Kierkegaard Ibn Ezra

Qustion 9. Which of these modern scientific advances challenge the Jewish idea of free will?

Sigmund Freud's suggestion that our behaviors are guided by unconscious drives Genetic science about the extent to which our lives and inclinations are programmed into our biological constitution Discoveries about organic aspects of our personalities A & B only All of the above

Qustion 10. Which Jewish philosopher suggested that God knows the options from which we will choose, but doesn’t know the specific choice we will make?

Philo Saadiah Gaon Gersonides Moses Mendelsohn
View Printer Friendly Quiz » Return to Web Version