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Featured Does God have a free will?

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Dave L, Dec 20, 2019.

  1. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you interpret the OT by the NT, it suggests it. Otherwise how did God repent from creating the human race? He destroyed it.
     
  2. Ohj1n37

    Ohj1n37 Member

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    I am not quite sure what you are talking about. I would ask kindly that you please clarify.

    I would also ask if you could give a specific verse showing that God was simplifying something too complex for the people of that time to comprehend.

    So far you have shared you're interpretation and suggestions of what you are getting from the Bible. I would caution this is not good evidence for making claims about the nature of God.
     
  3. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I learned most of what I know from Presbyterians. So your comment baffles me.
     
  4. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The NT contradicts the OT unless you go by the NT and count the humanized portrayal of God in the OT as an anthropomorphism.
     
  5. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member

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    Even if we and God have a nature we can't avoid and influences us greatly, a person can meditate on something and choose between things, so, even in the case we are not going to do something outside our nature, we can decide between things that are not in conlfict with that, so yes God and us have free will, because we are autonomous persons, and can decide between things as we please, not having free will, is like someone forcing their will on you.
     
  6. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    Yes, it is indeed true that God commands the Israelites to "choose life", But when read in the context of the whole chapter, Moses reveals that the power to obey this command comes from regenerating grace:

    "And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live." (Deut 30:6)

    In other words, God commands people to obey, but he also supplies all the grace needed to do so. The command to believe does not itself contain the power to do so. God commanding obedience (what we ought to do) does not mean a person can do this apart from grace. God must set them free from innate love of sin and natural hostility to God, if they have any hope of moving toward Him. Left to ourselves we are too proud to let go of our self-complacency and self-righteousness and so we will never rightly understand our woeful, guilty, and lost condition, unless God grants it.

    So why did not all Israel believe? Because not all were children of promise. Some God left to their own boasted alleged free will, letting them do what they wanted. In Romans 9: 6-8 it says of Israel:

    "For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring."

    This means that spiritual circumcision was not given to all physical descendants of Abraham but to the children of promise in their midst. The rest were commanded but were spiritually unable to obey. Some get mercy but the rest get justice. (Romans 9:22)

    In 2 Chronicles 30:6-12 we also are given a glimpse of what takes place behind the scenes of how it is that some people believe the gospel while others do not:

    So couriers went throughout all Israel and Judah with letters from the king and his princes, as the king had commanded, saying, “O people of Israel, return to the Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, that he may turn again to the remnant of you who have escaped from the hand of the kings of Assyria. 7 Do not be like your fathers and your brothers, who were faithless to the Lord God of their fathers, so that he made them a desolation, as you see. 8 Do not now be stiff-necked as your fathers were, but yield yourselves to the Lord and come to his sanctuary, which he has consecrated forever, and serve the Lord your God, that his fierce anger may turn away from you. 9 For if you return to the Lord, your brothers and your children will find compassion with their captors and return to this land. For the Lord your God is gracious and merciful and will not turn away his face from you, if you return to him.”
    10 So the couriers went from city to city through the country of Ephraim and Manasseh, and as far as Zebulun, but they laughed them to scorn and mocked them. 11 However, some men of Asher, of Manasseh, and of Zebulun humbled themselves and came to Jerusalem. 12 The hand of God was also on Judah to give them one heart to do what the king and the princes commanded by the word of the Lord.

    Why did some believe? According to this passage, it is because God had mercy on them and gave them a heart to follow God's command to repent. Notice that the rest scorned and mocked God's word.

    There is something I would like to add to the points I made above...

    In the Divine economy men are responsible to believe the gospel, but are morally impotent to do so (when drawing from their own native resources). This inability (due to our intimate solidarity with Adam's sin) is something we are culpable for, much like owing a debt we cannot repay. So God has every right to call us all to account to 'repay our debt', so to speak, even though fallen man does not have the resources to do so. The Church has a privilege and an obligation to call all men to repent and believe the gospel (an imperative) but, left to themselves, no one believes. But God, in his great mercy, still has mercy on many, opening their hearts to the gospel that that might believe.

    To this sometimes a synergist often quotes "whosoever will may come" to which we reply that this quote does not teach an indicative of what we are able to do, but rather, teaches what we 'ought' to do. As Martin Luther said, "Does it follow from: 'turn ye' that therefore you can turn? Does it follow from "'Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart' (Deut 6.5) that therefore you can love with all your heart? What do arguments of this kind prove, but the 'free-will' does not need the grace of God, but can do all things by its own power...But it does not follow from this that man is converted by his own power, nor do the words say so; they simply say: "if thou wilt turn, telling man what he should do. When he knows it, and sees that he cannot do it, he will ask whence he may find ability to do it..." Luther BW,164

    Reformation Theology: "Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live?"
     
  7. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    The lost cannot please God nor can they understand spiritual things. (Romans 8:7-8; 1 Cor. 2:14) ... Sorry.
     
  8. Charlie24

    Charlie24 Newbie Supporter

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    So when the gospel is heard and the Holy Spirit reaches in the heart to convict of sin, He can't make you understand what you just heard and felt?
     
  9. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    Yes that is what He does and when he does do that you've been regenerated. The spiritual ears and eyes have to be opened, the enmity must be destroyed, the heart of stone must be removed and replaced with a receptive heart of flesh that can love God. Remember, Jesus was very clear when he told Nicodemus that you cant SEE the kingdom of God unless you've been born again. You have to have spiritual eyes to see the kingdom of God and when he grants you that ability You will Never Reject Christ.
     
  10. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    You might want to explain what it means that God repented from creating the human race. Some will take that to mean that God isn't perfect and had to repent of sin.
     
  11. Lonnie Owens

    Lonnie Owens New Member

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    but you said we have no free will.. or is this not the same person who said James disproved free will?
     
  12. Lonnie Owens

    Lonnie Owens New Member

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    according to you no one can be a believer if they still sin because to sin means that you do not fully believe.. means you have doubts... So according to you other posts no one is going to heaven to be with God..
     
  13. Lonnie Owens

    Lonnie Owens New Member

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    everyone Dave L can't even defend the thread he posted about James disproving free will so he starts another one to see how long it will take before people start calling him out... not being mean just stating fact....

    God gave a part of himself so that man could live and if man has free will then God has the same free will.. He could snap his fingers and the world would exist no more he chooses to let us live out of the Glory of his good grace...
     
  14. visionary

    visionary Your God is my God... Ruth said, so say I. Supporter

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    He did use His brain ..
     
  15. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    His nature determines his will. No brain no nature.
     
  16. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Sinners are enslaved to sin. A saved will is enslaved to Christ but not perfect until the resurrection.
     
  17. Ohj1n37

    Ohj1n37 Member

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    In what way does the New Testament contradict the Old Testament? To my understanding they go hand in hand. Could you give an example?

    Yet the new testament is literally God becoming Human to go through what we have to go through. Do you not remember he was tempted by Satan just as we are if not worse?

    And the fact that he was tempted shows that he had the capability to choose. When he was on the cross he could have chose as he said, to make the very rocks rise up to protect him, but he didn't. He choose to suffer, to show us that he loves us. There is no greater love than one who dies for their friends.
     
  18. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The OT believers expected a millennial kingdom on earth. This contradicted Jesus' teaching of a spiritual kingdom only.
     
  19. zoidar

    zoidar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Sorry guys, this discussion was just too funny not to! ^_^

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Ohj1n37

    Ohj1n37 Member

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    You still have not given a reference to a specific scripture, but now other's interpretations. The New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old as is shown repeatedly in the New Testament. Jesus fulfilled hundreds of prophesies that predated his life on Earth by at least several hundred years. Some people in the past incorrectly interpreted what the prophesies meant, but this does not mean the Old and New Testaments are contradictory. It means as you have replied, their interpretation is contradictory.

    So I ask you again can you give specific verses where the Old and New Testaments are contradictory?
     
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