Believing in Inevitability is the Result of Ex Post Facto Thinking

Many events in history have an air of inevitability about them. This is because we have the luxury of ex post facto (from after the action) thinking. Step A led to Step B which led to Step C, etc. The most famous case of this kind of thinking is the historical event of the crucifixion of Jesus. As the story goes, it was foreordained that Judas would betray Jesus and that Pilate would not rule in favor of releasing Jesus and consequently Jesus would die on the cross.

But events do not always seem so inevitable when we’re in the midst of living them. Yes, Jesus did predict that Judas would betray him. But did you ever consider that Jesus, probably the most perceptive human being who ever lived, knew what was in Judas’ heart, and by calling him out, was giving him the chance to change his mind? Wasn’t Jesus all about forgiveness and second chances? Did Jesus see human beings as mere pawns in God’s master plan? Doesn’t it make more sense that Jesus seeing Judas on the verge of an act that would eventually lead him to commit suicide, would reach out to Judas and attempt to steer him away from the disastrous course he was on? After all, Judas had been hand-picked by Jesus to be a disciple, so he must have possessed some desirable human qualities.

As we know, Jesus was a mortal human being and was therefore subject to death. In that sense his death was inevitable. But to say that everything that happened to Jesus, or to us for matter, was or is inevitable, is to reduce intelligent life to a mere computer program. (SMN)