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Old 12-24-2009, 08:25 PM
 
Location: East Coast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV View Post
What did you believe once, if you don't mind me asking?

Personally, I think most of our 'disbelief' is based on the emotions more than convictions. Some people walk away from the faith, based on some difficulties in their life, we may become disappointed with God when we want Him to do something and He does not.
It's funny that you should say that because if i was given a dollar for everytime i heard that christians believe in God because of some difficulty in their lives i would be a rich man.
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Old 12-24-2009, 09:35 PM
 
17,928 posts, read 13,608,733 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard1965 View Post
You do not seem to understand the Sovreignty of God...
So, the first phase of God's plan was for man to fall?
You have a very dim understanding of scripture...
Why does He want a relationship with us?
Mans point of contact with God is not the sovereignty of God. Mans point of contact with God is the justice of God. If mans point of contact with God was His sovereignty then there would be no free will. God would just call all the shots without any regard for mans free will. God does not want mindless robots that have no choice but to to do what God makes them do. God wants a relationship with those who of their own free will choose to obey God out of love.

God did not cause man to fall, He allowed the fall to happen. In eternity past before He created the universe, God in His omnscience knew that man would fall. It was God's plan and desire to create man with free will, just as He had created the angels with free will.

God created and placed Adam in the garden and included a test for man's free will. God put one tree off limits to Adam and imposed a penalty for disobedience to God's warning. (Genesis 2:17) ''for in the day that thou eatest thereof, dying(spiritually) thou shall die(physically). [Literal translation]. When Adam used his free will to disobey God he immediately died spiritually. And as a result, he died physically some 930 years later(Gen. 5:5).

Knowing that Adam would fall, and that he would impose Adams sin on all of mankind so that He could bring all of mankind under the unbrella of grace, God provided a plan for the restoration of man to fellowship with Him. That plan culminated at the Cross with Christ. Christ paid the penalty for all sin in the human race past, present, and future. That opened the door of salvation to Whosoever would reach out and accept the offer of salvation through faith in Christ.

Calvinists don't understand that by God's sovereign will, man's volition or free will co-exists with His sovereignty.

Here is how man's free will is contrasted with God's sovereignty.

1 Timothy 2:3-4 ''God our Savior who desires all men to be saved...''

It is not God's desire to save some men and to leave in condemnation other men. It is God's desire to save ALL men. And yet, the Bible makes it clear that most people will not be saved.

Matthew 7:13 ''Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. 14) For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.

Matthew 10:28 ''And do not fear those who kill the body, but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 25:41 ''Then He will also say to those on His left, ''Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; 46 ) ''And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.''

Revelation 20:15 And if anyones name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

So, on the one hand, you have God's desire that all men be saved, and on the other hand you have a great multitude of unsaved humanity going into the eternal lake of fire.

This means that God allows man to choose. To use his God given free will to either accept God's offer of salvation or to reject it.

More scripture? OKAY!

John 8:24 ''I said therefore to you,that you shall die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you shall die in your sins.''

John 3:16 ''For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that Whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.

John 3:16 says plainly that there are going to be some who perish and some who have eternal life. But 1 Tim. 2:3-4 said that God desires ALL men to be saved.

This is enough to get the point across that God does not impose His sovereignty on mans free will in choosing to accept or reject God's offer of salvation. It is man's choice. Man has free will. This in no way contradicts the fact that God draws all men. That refers to the fact that God calls man through the Gospel and it refers to the fact that the Holy Spirit convicts man of sin at the point of Gospel understanding. There is another aspect to that. God has placed in the heart of all men an emptyness that only God can fill. However, some may seek God, and some will not.

Jeremiah 29:13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Man's free will co-exists with God's sovereignty by God's own will.
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Old 12-24-2009, 09:48 PM
 
17,928 posts, read 13,608,733 times
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Originally Posted by Richard1965 View Post
No, it is totally taken out of the hands of men, how else could God have written the names in the book of life before the foundations of the world...God says no one seeks Him, no one...I sought you, you did not seek Me, I chose you, you did not choose me...in a sense we do choose, but, who is in reality behind that choice?
See post #122.
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Old 12-24-2009, 09:54 PM
 
17,928 posts, read 13,608,733 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard1965 View Post
What causes a man dead in sin to want to seek God?
We are all born spiritually dead but God has placed in man's heart an emptiness that can only be filled by God. Some men will try to find the way to fill this emptiness by seeking God. And God will get the Gospel to them so that they can find God.

Jeremiah 29:13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
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Old 12-24-2009, 09:54 PM
 
8,989 posts, read 11,810,836 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard1965 View Post
But, who is behind that choice? i do rightly divide the word...parts of scripture are from man's perspective and parts of scripture are from God's perspective...God clearly says that we did not choose Him, but He chose us, we did not seek Him, but He sought us...Christ also says that no one comes to the Father except thru Him, and no one comes to Him except the Father draws Him...and those that the father gives me, i will not lose...no one can pluck them from my hand...Romans is a good letter to understand what is meant by predestination and it is also alluded to in other epistles...
I know that's what scripture says and I agree but scripture also says, we do have a choice. I don't understand it nor can I harmonize it and frankly that is not for me to but it is there.
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Old 12-24-2009, 10:13 PM
 
17,928 posts, read 13,608,733 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard1965 View Post
But, who is behind that choice? i do rightly divide the word...parts of scripture are from man's perspective and parts of scripture are from God's perspective...God clearly says that we did not choose Him, but He chose us, we did not seek Him, but He sought us...Christ also says that no one comes to the Father except thru Him, and no one comes to Him except the Father draws Him...and those that the father gives me, i will not lose...no one can pluck them from my hand...Romans is a good letter to understand what is meant by predestination and it is also alluded to in other epistles...
John 15:16 ''You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit...

Jesus was spealing to the disciples that he had chosen to be his Apostles. This verse has nothing to do with salvation. Jesus had chosen those 12 men to be his apostles to carry on his work.

Compare John 15:16 with Luke 6:13 and Mark 3:13-19 and Matthew 10:2-4,

and especally John 6:70 and John 13:18.

John 6:70 Jesus answered them, ''Did I Myself not chose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?''

John 13:18 ''I do not speak of all of you. I know the ones I have chosen, but it is that the Scripture may be fulfilled, ''He who eats my bread has lifted up his heel against Me.

So again, many people try to use John 15:16 as a salvation verse but it isn't. It is simply a reference to the twelve apostles having been chosen by Christ to be his apostles.

I realize that you didn't actually use this verse, but I thought I would bring it up.
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Old 12-24-2009, 11:02 PM
 
17,928 posts, read 13,608,733 times
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This thread isn't really about the sovereignty of God versus the free will of man though. It's about the Gospel. You might want to start a different thread on the subject.

I would have hoped that more people would have something nice to say about the Gospel instead of the people who are hostile and antagonistic or just arent interested in Christ. How on earth can anyone not be interested in Christ? Well, it is the devils world so...
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Old 12-25-2009, 03:11 AM
 
Location: Florida
478 posts, read 600,187 times
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With all due respect, Mike555, the subject of your thread seems to be of a proselytizing nature, and I don't really understand why you would think it worthy of your time posting it here in a christian forum. ??? Is that really "news" to most christians? Not that I begrudge you for feeling so happy and joyous about your love for Jesus that you want to spread the word- by no means do I want to rain on your parade. It just seems a little superfluous is all. But I do find it interesting that so many people responded- as well as debated what you had to say- especially those of the christian faith. Eh, just my opinion- carry on, peace and love to you and everyone else today/Xmas.
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Old 12-25-2009, 07:58 AM
 
Location: US
22,644 posts, read 11,453,089 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV View Post
You did, thanks. But I wanted to ask you further, since this is something I'm working on.

Matt 4:17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near."

I think it's clear that Jesus was calling for a repentance from sin, as evident by the following:

Matt: 12:41 The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now one greater than Jonah is here.

Obviously, Nineveh changed their wicked behavior and by using them as an example, Jesus is telling the Jews of his day to also repent from sins, otherwise, why would He be mentioning Nineveh?

2nd issue with simple trust being salvific, is that we see that some promises of God tend to be conditioned on performance (even though God does not say anything about performance at first). Take Saul as an example:

1 Sam. 2:30 "Therefore the LORD God of Israel declares, 'I did indeed say that your house and the house of your father should walk before Me forever'; but now the LORD declares, 'Far be it from Me--for those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me will be lightly esteemed.

Also, check out Ezekiel:

Ezekiel 33:13"When I say to the righteous he will surely live, and he so trusts in his righteousness that he commits iniquity, none of his righteous deeds will be remembered; but in that same iniquity of his which he has committed he will die.

Now, I can see with Ezekiel that temporal judgment is in view and not eternity. Same with Saul.

But, the difficulty, for me, is that there appears to be a precedent where God can take something away even though a 'forever' promise has been made without apparent condition.

A common eternal security passage is Heb. 13:5

However, the original shows that the promise is not unconditional:

Deut. 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."

yet, just a few verses down, you find the following:

Deut. 31:15 Then the LORD appeared at the Tent in a pillar of cloud, and the cloud stood over the entrance to the Tent. 16 And the LORD said to Moses: "You are going to rest with your fathers, and these people will soon prostitute themselves to the foreign gods of the land they are entering. They will forsake me and break the covenant I made with them. 17 On that day I will become angry with them and forsake them; I will hide my face from them, and they will be destroyed. Many disasters and difficulties will come upon them, and on that day they will ask, 'Have not these disasters come upon us because our God is not with us?' 18 And I will certainly hide my face on that day because of all their wickedness in turning to other gods.

So, in light of these verses, some 'faith alone' preachers of today interpret saving faith not as a simple conviction or acceptance of some truths, but as an ongoing commitment to Christ.

I like your conviction (you sound Free Grace on the few posts of yours that I've read), and I hold to the same view (for now) but am also wrestling with the above questions. Your feedback and input are appreciated.

Merry Christmas to you and yours. In Christ,
BigV
You are the first person on these post that i see understands the difference between Temporal and Eternal...it is interesting that He told Moses that this was going to happen...i believe it is not because He looked down the corridor of time and saw it, but because He ordained it for His purposes, because if we believe that God is Omniscient, but yet has to look down the coridor of time to learn what His people will do tells me that He is not Omniscient...IOW for me to learn everything in the Universe would not make me omniscient it would make me merely more learned than others...God is Omniscient because He has ordained all to come to pass, because if nothing happens without God ordaining it, nothing exists without His making it exist, everything is created through Him...then that means nothing...time is a concept created for us we experience the march of time...in Gods reality time has no meaning He is the Alpha and the Omega the Beginning and the End, IOW He looks at the beginning and the end as His now, we cannot put our infinite God into our finite timeline, it is not going to work...people often argue that what i say does not portray a fair God...but are we to attribute our idea of fairness to God or take on God's attribute of fairness...is fair to God to hold Adams sin against us so that we are born into sin from the moment of conception?...is it fair that God chose to only reveal Himself to Abram and not to the whole world and then thru Abram create a chosen people, the Jews?...is it fair that God chose Jacob over Esau before they were born and had done anything good or bad?...is it fair that in Romans God says "I will have mercy on whom I will mercy and I will harden whom I will harden", which brought on the question "then why does He still hold our sins against us, for who has resisted His will?" Paul's reply is that man has not right to ask God this for "does the thing formed say to He who formed it, why did you make me this way?"...So, if the thing formed could ask God why did you create me as an object of wrath and then turn around and punish me for it?...this is what Paul is pointing out here...is it fair for God to have raised Pharoah up for the very purpose of hardening his heart as He said to moses he will not believe you for i will harden his heart and everytime Moses spoke God hardened Pharoah's heart, he did not have a chance because he was created for such a purpose...now, in our modern day society we would find that to be very unfair...Is God unfair?..No, by no means is He unfair everthing He does is purpoefull...i'd say the farther the world gets from God, the more they see the bible full of evils as one woman on the evilbible.com website sees the bible as filled with an evil God...
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Old 12-25-2009, 05:43 PM
 
Location: Bellingham, WA
9,751 posts, read 12,537,388 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV View Post
What did you believe once, if you don't mind me asking?

Personally, I think most of our 'disbelief' is based on the emotions more than convictions. Some people walk away from the faith, based on some difficulties in their life, we may become disappointed with God when we want Him to do something and He does not.
I was a pretty standard issue far right, conservative southern protestant. But I can assure you there was little to no emotion involved in my de-conversion. No difficulties, but there was, at times, some disappointment with my beliefs. But by the time I realized I was an atheist, I had become pretty indifferent to my religion, so it honestly didn't seem like a big deal by then.
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