Freewill, a word we hear a lot of, some Christians believe it and others do not. We as Catholics must, it is part of our basic faith, it is the foundation of the faith.
So what is freewill?
It is our ability, as human beings, creates in the likeness of God, to FREELY CHOOSE our path, to say yes or no to any given situation. God created us not to be bound to follow his command, the lack of freewill, but rather to free choose to follow his command, the presence of freewill. Use this link to go to the Catholic Encyclopedia for more information (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06259a.htm).
If we take the life of Christ as an example, Jesus was totally human, so he must have had freewill, yes I know he was also totally divine, and was God, but he was also totally human. So Jesus must have been tempted, as we know he was, and he must have chosen not to sin, not to take the temptation. In truth what good would it have been if Jesus had not freewill, if he could not have chosen to sin or not. Without freewill Jesus was just God, not human, so it would not have been any great thing for Him not to have sinned. It is because of the fact that he could chose to sin or not sin that makes his sinlessness so much more. The same can be said for his crucifixion, if Jesus had no freewill, what kind of free offering was he making, none! He was only doing what he was told to do. Jesus chose to allow it to happen to him, freely, out of love for us and for God.
Freewill and Christianity must go together; you cannot have one without the other. Freewill is Gods greatest gift to us, it is how God shows us that he trusts us, and loves us. There is no love in forced respect or forced obedience, there is only a controlling nature. God does not control his creations, out of respect and love he allows us to live our lives. He gently invites us in to his loving arms, but he never holds us so tight that we cannot escape. Freewill allows us to express our love for God, allows us to experience his love.
Without freewill we would not feel Gods love, but rather we would feel Gods constraints. The ability to choose to love allows us the ability to feel love. If we did not have freewill, we would not love God; we would only be obeying God, big difference.
God would rather have us freely love him and disobey him, that to force us to obey him, and to freely choose to love him.
As for me, I will take a freewill offering of love over a forced love any day of the week…