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Free Will - God's test that all mankind flunks

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by 3 Resurrections, Aug 23, 2021.

  1. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If God works in someone to will of His good pleasure, doesn't that make them more than prone?
     
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  2. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The same method that universalists use to claim God wouldn't really condemn man to eternal punishment. —As if any human can know all about what Love really is, and does, and does not.
     
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  3. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    bling said:
    Are you saying man does not have an objective for spending time here on earth and it is really just God's objective for some?

    Mark Quayle said:
    No

    Man always naturally sets himself an objective, even if it is just momentary pleasure or idleness or self-justification.

    Man's fallen objective is self-important, as far as his motivations go. The regenerated elect's objective is self-interested, of course, but better it is also intent on God's desires. At least, it should be, and eventually always returns to that.

    But my point is in the fact that man's motivations are not what reign sovereign. They only fulfill God's sovereign plan. Both God's command and his sovereign plan for his elect are where their motivations take them, sooner or later —the plan always, the obedience usually.

    In the ideal, the objective of the redeemed —however ignorantly so— is God's glory, and the expectation/ pursuit of knowing God as he is/ being with God. (By "ignorant", I mean that we don't really even know the meaning or quality of it, or maybe it's simply that it doesn't fit into human words, but our hearts have some apprehension to it, since our hearts are inhabited by the very Spirit of God.)

    Pretty much all my thinking includes the notion that we are nothing of any worth or ability/integrity apart from Christ. (This is a separate (though related) notion from the doctrine of Total Depravity.) We redeemed should understand that our objective is only Christ's in the end, but being Christ's objective, it is ours. Christ's first, then ours as a result. Cause and effect. This is not mere cooperation, as though we had something to add to the effort that God has not done on his own.

    Objective: just today I found myself nearly weeping in thanks to the Lord for another temptation put behind me. I chose, yes, yet not I, but Christ in me. It is not Christ who owes anyone thanks for turning from sin and following him. Our objective is Christ.
     
  4. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    It seems to me that any thinking human knows that incinerating another living human is not love. Even if you were brainwashed from the earliest age to believe it is love. But here we are... Go ahead and blame the victims. That would be the obvious reply, right?
     
  5. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    The Bible does not teach the ability of unregenerate man to always choose the good (John 8:35), it teaches only the ability of unregenerate man to choose voluntarily (Exodus 25:2; Ezra 7:13), and it teaches that when man voluntarily chooses to do what pleases God (keeping in mind that anything done by God's enemy; i.e., those apart from faith in Jesus Christ, has no ability to please God), it is only because the power of God works it in him (Ezra 1:5; John 6:65; 1 Corinthians 2:14, 15:10; Philippians 2:13; Hebrews 13:21).

    See post #71 for more complete presentation.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2021
  6. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What about a dead human?
     
  7. FaithWillDo

    FaithWillDo Active Member

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    Dear 3 Resurrections,
    You said:
    This is not true. God does not originate evil. We know that God can utilize evil once it materializes, as in "making the wrath of men to praise him", but in Him there is "no darkness at all".

    Why to you believe that God can't create "evil"? There is "no darkness" in God but that does not mean that He does not know about evil and will not use it for His good and righteous purposes.

    Scripture clearly says that God created the evil of this world and He even uses it to accomplish His "will" to produce new children.

    Look at these verses:

    2 Rom 9:21 Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor?

    Rom 11:32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.

    These verses above are examples of how God uses evil to satisfy His own good and righteous purposes.

    2 Sam 24:1 And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.

    So how did God "move" David? He sent Satan.

    1 Chron 21:1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.

    God also uses evil spirits to accomplish His "will".

    Judg 9:23 Then God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem; and the men of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech:

    1 Sam 16:14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.

    More examples:
    Job 2:10 But he said to her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. We have also received good from God, and should we not receive evil? In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

    Job 2:10 But he said to her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. We have also received good from God, and should we not receive evil? In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

    Job 42:11 Then came there unto him all his brethren, and all his sisters, and all they that had been of his acquaintance before, and did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, and comforted him over all the evil that the LORD had brought upon him:

    Prov 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

    Ecc 7:13 Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he hath made crooked?

    Isa 19:14 The LORD hath mingled a perverse spirit in the midst thereof: and they have caused Egypt to err in every work thereof, as a drunken man staggereth in his vomit.

    Isa 45:5-7 I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

    Lam 3:38 Out of the mouth of the Most High doth not there proceed evil and good?

    Ezek 14:9 And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the LORD have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.

    Amos 3:6 Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it?

    You said:
    Even in the case of the cherub in Eden in Ezekiel 28:15 who fell (the anointed cherub who became Satan), this being was originally created "perfect in his ways UNTIL iniquity was found in him". This was a CHANGE that took place in that anointed cherub from his originally-righteous state. Just as a CHANGE happened to the originally-righteous Adam and Eve. They did NOT have any knowledge of evil when they were created, or the act of taking from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil would not have caused a change in their nature and fellowship with the perfect God.

    Adam & Eve and Satan were righteous ONLY because they had not sinned yet. God made them spiritually imperfect so that they would sin.

    Scripture specifically says that God created Satan "to destroy":

    Isa 54:16 Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy.

    Until Adam and Eve sinned, there was no evil in the world. But that understanding does not mean that they were created perfect. Like Satan, they were perfect in their ways UNTIL they were not perfect in their ways (when they sinned).

    By creating spiritually imperfect creatures is how God created evil. He planned for evil to come into the world and He took the responsibility for it by sending His Son to die on the cross to bring an end to the evil.

    Dan 9:24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.

    When Christ finishes His work within each person who has ever lived, the transgression will come to an end and everlasting righteousness will reign from within mankind.

    You said:
    Didn't the apostle Paul tell his readers that he wanted them "wise concerning good, and simple concerning evil"? (Romans 16:19). It is NOT a desirable thing to have the knowledge of evil. This was true in the beginning in the Garden of Eden, and Paul wanted his readers to reflect that same simplicity about evil as much as possible while still in this world.

    Here is a better translation:
    Rom 16:19 Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.

    Paul was not saying to be ignorant about evil. Paul is teaching about "obedience" to doing good. At this point, mankind already has a knowledge of evil. Paul is teaching them to come out from that way of thinking and to be wise to "good".

    It is a "desirable thing" to have a knowledge of evil. If mankind doesn't understand evil, how can we understand the goodness of God? God even gave us the Law so that sin (evil) would increase. He did this so that we could learn from it and be lead to Christ (goodness).

    You said:
    I believe that the spirit of each human sent from God to the womb is originally righteous as it comes from Him. But the very moment that originally righteous spirit is united with the human elements in the second of conception, it becomes corrupted by association, resulting in a child who will inevitably grow to give evidence of having that sin nature. It will only be a matter of time before the first sinful act is performed out of the fallen nature that child possesses. For those who will be the children of God, He chooses the moment at which He sends His Spirit to regenerate that spirit into life again.

    We are only righteous when we are without sin. When we are in the womb, we have not yet sinned. But the spirit within mankind is "marred" and subject to vanity. After birth, we quickly become carnally minded and sin.

    Look at it this way. Christ was created spiritually perfect and even though He was born into a physical body, He NEVER sinned. This happened only because of His spiritual perfection. That "perfection" is what mankind is lacking. And because we are lacking, Christ will destroy our marred spirit and replace it with the Holy Spirit. That is the only way we can be made perfect. God does not "regenerate that spirit into life again". God destroys that spirit and gives us a new spirit, the Holy Spirit. Our old spirit is destroyed by Christ's judgment and is replaced by the Holy Spirit. This is conversion. It is much more than just repairing our old spirit.

    You said:
    It can happen even in the womb, as we have evidence in the case of John the Baptist. It can happen with our dying breath, as in the case of the repentant Zealot thief hanging beside Christ.

    John the Baptist was not "regenerated" in the womb. In fact, John the Baptist was not even saved and nor was the thief on the cross. Both have been "justified" by their faith which God gave them, but being justified alone is not salvation. They must still be baptized by the Spirit, be judged and have their spiritual blindness healed so that they can understand the truth of God. And after all that happens, they must be tested while in the flesh as Christ was tested by Satan in the wilderness. For those reasons, Paul said this about the Old Testament fathers:

    Heb 11:40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they, without us, should not be made perfect.

    The First-Fruits (the Elect) of this age will be involved in the work which Christ must still perform within the Old Testament faithful so that they can be made perfect. This work will occur in the Lake of Fire age. None of the Old Testament faithful will be in the Lamb's Book of Life. That book is reserved only for the First-Fruits, the Heirs to the promise.

    John the Baptist is said to be the "greatest born of women" and even he did not make it to the Kingdom of Heaven where the Elect dwell.

    Mat 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

    John the Baptist, near the end of his life, wasn't even sure who Jesus was. John remained spiritually blind without the baptism of the Holy Spirit, just as all mankind is from birth.

    Mat 11:2-3 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples, And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?

    John, like all the OT fathers, did not have the Baptism of the Holy Spirit (Latter Rain of the Spirit). When a believer receives the Latter Rain, Christ heals their spiritual blindness and gives them eyes that can "see".

    The FIRST of mankind to receive to the Latter Rain were those in the upper room on the Day of Pentecost.

    John 7:39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

    When a chosen believer receives the Latter Rain, they are born again but they are still not yet made "perfect". At that point, they begin traveling the Narrow path that leads to "life" (perfection). All mankind must follow this same pathway to salvation that Christ has laid down. God is not a respecter of persons so everyone must follow the path. In this age, Christ is only causing the Elect to complete the path. They are the First-Fruits of Christ's harvest of mankind. All others must travel and complete the pathway in the final age and then they too, will be made perfect. Then Daniel's Seventy weeks prophecy will be testified to be true.

    Joe
     
  8. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Agreed: ignorant of evil, innocent of evil, does not mean spiritually perfect. It only means spiritually clean, lacking sin.
    Be careful. God is not the author of sin. Caused sin, yes. Be specific what you mean, when you say he created. Some of the quotes you give concerning the matter, specially the ones directly saying he created evil, are archaic phraseology, and the word 'evil' in them means such a concept as 'disaster', not 'sin'.
     
  9. 3 Resurrections

    3 Resurrections That's 666 YEARS, folks

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    This used to be my view, but not after doing considerable re-examination of those pertinent passages such as the "narrow gate" text, etc.. Jesus's parable example of the "harvest" at the close of the ages was going to include both wheat and tares . But nobody called it predominantly a "tares harvest". It's predominantly a "WHEAT harvest", with some tares growing among the wheat. God determined to "bring MANY sons unto glory" - not a few. That's a UNNUMBERED throng of resurrected saints present in heaven in Revelation. And that was only the AD 70 resurrection presented there - it didn't even include the additional throng of those who will be present and accounted for at the next, last resurrection in our future.

    The "narrow gate" with "few" entering it applied to Christ's own generation of fellow-Jews, with only a comparatively small remnant of that specific time period and nation acknowledging Him as their prophesied Messiah ("he came unto His own, and His own received Him not...").

    Paul in Romans 9:27 recognized the fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy in his days, that "though the number of the children of ISRAEL be as the sand of the sea, a REMNANT shall be saved:" (Isaiah 10:22). That's NOT speaking of a tiny remnant of all of humanity sum total who would ultimately be saved. Paul spoke of his own people and generation, saying, "Even so then AT THIS *PRESENT TIME* ALSO THERE IS A REMNANT according to the election of grace." That "remnant" of Paul's nation at that time being elected by grace was not a minority limit put upon ALL of human history.

    God has MUCH better stats than that.
     
  10. 3 Resurrections

    3 Resurrections That's 666 YEARS, folks

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    YES to this.
     
  11. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    Biblical Free Will; Sovereignty of God

    The Bible does not teach the" free will" of unregenerate man. Free will is a philosophical notion (Aristotle, Cicero) asserted by Pelagius, a British monk around 400 AD, on the assumption that the moral responsibility of man requires that man have a free will. Biblically, this is not so.

    The Bible teaches that man is a slave to sin (John 8:34; Galatians 3:22; Romans 11:32),
    that it is only those whom the Son makes free that are free (John 8:36; cf John 8:32, Romans 6:18, 22, 8:12; Galatians 5:1).
    Free will (self-power) was lost in the fall when man's nature became corrupted, enslaving him to sin so that he cannot do the good (Romans 7:18-19, 8:7). Free will (self-power) means the freedom (power) to do the good; i.e., obey God (Mark 12:29-31), to be sinless. Unregenerate man no longer has that power (Romans 5:6, 7:18, 8:7-8; John 15:5), which is the meaning of the depravity of man.

    What unregenerate man has is" free agency," the freedom to do what he wishes or desires, to act voluntarily according to his disposition. But with his unregenerate (fallen) nature, his disposition is toward evil; i.e., self-interest in preference to God (Mark 12:29-30; Romans 1:21, 3:10-12, 23). The difference between free will and free agency is not just semantics, it's the difference between being able to obey God and not being able to obey God (Romans 8:7-8). The regenerate man can obey God, not because of self-power (free will), but because of the power of the Holy Spirit who transforms his disposition (Romans 8:9).

    The conclusion to this is: there is no conflict in Scripture between the absolute sovereignty of God (Daniel 4:35; Acts 2:23, 4:28, 13:48; Luke 22:22; Romans 8:29-30, 9:14-29, 11:25-34; Ephesians 1:4-12; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Peter 1:2) and the free will of man, because the Bible does not teach that man has free will (Romans 3:9-12, 23, 6:6, 17-22, 7:14, 24-25, 8:7).
    Man is only a free agent, choosing voluntarily accordng to his disposition, which is corrupt and evil (Genesis 6:5, 8:21; Jeremiah 17:9; Matthew 7:11; John 1:5, 3:19). God exercises his sovereignty over man, not by compelling their acts or wills contrary to their preferences or dispositions (which would be an overriding of their free agency), but by operating through their dispositions (Genesis 20:6; Exodus 3:21; Deuteronomy 2:25, 30; Joshua 11:20; 1 Samuel 10:9; Ezra 1:1, 5, 7:27; Nehemiah 2:12, 7:5; Psalms 105:25, 106:46; Proverbs 21:1; Ezekiel 36:27; Daniel 1:9; 2 Corinthians 8:16; Revelation 17:17), to which their wills freely respond. So that there is no conflict between the sovereignty of God and the free agency of man, because man stll acts voluntarily according to his wishes and desires, he still voluntarily chooses to do what he prefers, which is the meaning of free agency (and what many think is the meaning of "free will;" i.e. the power to make all moral choices).

    So the Bible does not teach the ability of unregenerate man to always choose the good (John 8:35), it teaches only the ability of unregenerate man to choose voluntarily (Exodus 25:2; Ezra 7:13), and it teaches that when man voluntarily chooses to do what pleases God (keeping in mind that anything done by God's enemy; i.e., those apart from faith in Jesus Christ, has no ability to please God), it is only because the power of God works it in him (Ezra 1:5; John 6:65; 1 Corinthians 2:14, 15:10; Philippians 2:13; Hebrews 13:21).

    philosophical free will -- the Biblie denies such (John 6:65, 8:34)

    philosohical free agency = Biblical free will (Exodus 25:2; Ezra 7:13)
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2021
  12. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    And your definition of God's perfect love and of unselfishness is totally assumptive human reasoning and without Biblical support.
     
  13. FaithWillDo

    FaithWillDo Active Member

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    Dear Mark,
    I have heard your reasoning before about "ra" not being translated as "evil" but as "calamity". However, all things come from God and are created by God. Everything in existence comes from God. He causes evil to come into existence, therefore it is proper to say He created evil as Isa 45:7 says. Plus, isn't "calamity" evil anyway?

    Also, as I presented, it is completely supportable by scripture that God uses evil to accomplish good.

    If God didn't create "evil", who did? Mankind cannot create anything.

    Also, you said "God is not the author of sin". What verse says that?

    Here is the closest I can find:

    1Cor 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.

    Joe
     
  14. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Think what you must.
     
  15. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    Why do you say Adam was prone to sin?
     
  16. 3 Resurrections

    3 Resurrections That's 666 YEARS, folks

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    Hmmm, we are told that spiritually, mankind is not just "marred" in spirit but "DEAD in trespasses and sins". Our spirits by nature are already dead from conception forward. They don't need God to destroy them - they need the Spirit of God to RESURRECT them to a living state in order for us to be enabled to respond in faith. "And you hath He QUICKENED, who were dead in trespasses and sins." Once God chooses to start that process, He will never fail to bring the entire salvation process to completion in our final glorified, eternal state.
     
  17. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    He wanted to sin when given a law. = prone to sin because he wanted to.
     
  18. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    "It seems to me" is never the method of arriving at divine truth (Isaiah 55:8-9).
     
  19. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    Or was it that he didn't want to be without Eve and alone, knowing that her transgression would separate them?

    That he loved the creature more than the Creator?
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2021
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  20. 3 Resurrections

    3 Resurrections That's 666 YEARS, folks

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    Yep, most likely.

    Unfortunately, my own father thought that this was actually praiseworthy of Adam to knowingly sacrifice His relationship with God for his relationship with Eve. The church he once attended taught this same thing. ??!!!!!! Amazing, that he would think plunging the entire race of humanity into a fallen state was a laudable demonstration of supreme, unselfish affection for his wife. My father apparently did not read Jesus's teaching about the ranking of familial relationships; that "he that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me" (Matt. 10:37). That goes for son or daughter - or husband or wife also.
     
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