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Featured How Free Will Destroys the Gospel

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Dave L, Nov 20, 2018.

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  1. BCsenior

    BCsenior Still an evangelist

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    Through my personal spiritual experiences,
    God has proved to me that His word is always True.
    I.E. ALL of my many experiences totally line up
    with what is written in the word of the Lord.
    E.G. Laying hands on people and praying for healing
    "in the name of Jesus", and experiencing signs,
    wonders, and miracles.

    Re: the Lord's many SWMs ...
    Satan would NOT be found dead confirming the Truth
    of our many incredible gospel tracts, NTs, Bibles,
    and the world-famous anointed "Jesus" film!
     
  2. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Maybe you can explain how the gospel is turned into law?

    Separately when God gave the Israelites the Law of Moses don't you think that He gave it by mercy/grace? Don't you think that was a merciful and gracious act on God's part?
     
  3. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    God has the "power" and Love to save them, but many mature adults do not like Godly type Love (Charity) and will not humble themselves to the point of accepting pure charity. God is not going to force His Love on them, since that would not be Loving on God's part and they would not be receiving Godly type Love and thus have Godly type love to return that type Love to God.
     
  4. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    Refutes what exactly? You left out verse 16:

    16“You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.
     
  5. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Somehow I don't think the story of the Prodigal Son agrees with your view. Neither does this scripture.
    Mat 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
    The scripture tell us their reasoning....
    Joh 11:47 Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles.
    Joh 11:48 If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.

    Are men so different today when they refuse?


    They statement was rather prophetic, the Romans did come and take away their nation but not because the people believed on Him.
     
  6. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    I think what you may be getting at is the Bondage of the Will. Luther in his response to Erasmus coined this term. So for those playing at home this is not a Calvin deal but a Reformation deal and Luther was the main proponent.

    Luther when opposing Erasmus used Romans 6 to show we have our wills for sure, but it is either in bondage to sin and death or slaves to Christ and righteousness.

    Luther said to Erasmus,

    It is in the highest degree wholesome and necessary, for a Christian to know whether or not his will has anything to do in matters pertaining to salvation. Indeed let me tell you, that is the hinge on which our discussion turns. . . . For if I am ignorant of the nature, extent, and limits of what I can and must do with reference to God, I shall be equally ignorant and uncertain of the nature, extent, and limits of what God can and will do in me. . . . Now, if I am ignorant of God’s works and power, I am ignorant of God himself; and if I do not know God, I cannot worship, praise, give thanks, or serve Him, for I do not know how much I should attribute to myself and how much to Him. (quoted in Luther Selections, 179)

    More now of the pertinent info from a John Piper article:

    Luther knew that Erasmus, more than any other opponent, had put his finger on the deeper issue at stake beneath the justification controversy and the controversy over the mass and indulgences and Mary and purgatory. And that issue was whether human beings are so sinful that God’s sovereign grace must create and decisively fulfill every human inclination to believe and obey God.

    Erasmus did not believe this. Luther did — so did Calvin and Zwingli. Erasmus’s belief that the fallen human will contributed its own decisive self-determining power to the act of faith and the pursuit of holiness was, in Luther’s mind, a perilous underestimation of the desperate condition of man without Christ. In Gordon Rupp’s assessment of Luther’s debate with Erasmus, he commented, “At the end of the day, Luther could maintain the great Anselmian retort: ‘Thou hast not considered the gravity of sin’” (Luther and Erasmus, 12.).


    And I think the following may be what you are getting at with regards to the Gospel:

    And, Luther would add, the failure to see the gravity our sin and the depth of our corruption and the bondage of our will, if unchecked, will become an assault on the freedom and sovereignty and the glory of God’s grace in salvation, and therefore an assault on the very gospel itself. In 1528, Luther put it like this: “I condemn and reject as nothing but error all doctrines which exalt our ‘free will,’ as being directly opposed to [the] mediation and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ” (What Luther Says, Vol. 3, 1376–1377). By “free will,” I think he means decisive self-determination in acts of faith and obedience.

    In another place he said,

    This is my absolute opinion: he that will maintain that a man’s free-will is able to do or work anything in spiritual cases, be they never so small, denies Christ. This I have always maintained in my writings, especially in those against Erasmus. (The Tabletalk of Martin Luther, 206)

    He doesn’t mean that the will is inactive. He means that wherever it is active in faith and obedience, God is decisively active, creating and fulfilling the acts.


    Remainder of the piece well worth the read:


    The Bondage of the Will, the Sovereignty of Grace, and the Glory of God
     
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  7. JM

    JM pre·des·ti·nar·i·an Supporter

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    Well, we know the Son of Perdition was lost on purpose. ;)
     
  8. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    The Covenant is in Christ's Blood. We are justified by His shed Blood. As with the Abrahamic covenant of faith God walked through the divided animals while Abraham slept. God swore to that Covenant and Abraham believed the Promise.
     
  9. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    And the New Covenant is in Christ's Blood by God's Grace through faith.
     
  10. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    It is not puppetry. We truly do what our hearts desire or try to. If we are dead in our sins and trespasses that is what leads our desires. If we are slaves to Christ that is what leads our desires.

    St Paul explains this well in Romans 6.
     
  11. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    And I don't believe in a Deist God.
     
  12. Foxfyre

    Foxfyre Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have to disagree with this one Dave. I have had too much personal experience and have heard too many credible testimonies to believe God does not communicate with us in many different ways.

    Consider a man leaving work late and having the phrase 'stop and buy milk' in his head that he could not shake. He didn't get an answer when he tried to all his wife, but the thought was so persistent he stopped by the market and bought a gallon of milk. He then had the thought that he should turn down a certain street, one he never been on to the best of his knowledge. But at this point he was so flummoxed he turned. And obeyed the thoughts in his head telling him where to stop and deliver the milk at a tiny rundown house in a poor neighborhood. He was met at the door by a poorly dressed young Hispanic man. He stretched out his hands with the milk and said, 'this is for you' and the man grabbed the milk and ran to a back bedroom where an infant was crying. The man quickly returned and with his broken "Spanglish" communicated that it was two days before he would be paid, they had been robbed, they had no milk for the baby--the mother had had a double mastectomy--and they had been on their knees praying for help for their hungry child. The man teared up and pressed all the cash he had on him into the man's hands and left, praising God.

    I believe that story. I think things like that happen all the time despite all the instances we know when it seems prayer is not answered.

    I don't pretend to understand the ways of God or why/how he does things, but I know without doubt that he communicates with us in many ways.
     
  13. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think we need to be careful here in thinking these scriptures are referring to us. Surely today there are those who are chosen to preach the Gospel just as the Apostle were, but not everyone is and we don't believe that the Jews will be persecuting them as they did Jesus and the Apostles.

    Jesus was talking to his Apostles that had been with Him, the ones that He chose. He is telling them that they will suffer at the hands of the Jews just as He will.

    Joh 15:24 If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
    Joh 15:25 But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.

    Joh 15:27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.
     
  14. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    Some relevant themes in Holy Scriptures:

    With the distinction between free agency and free will defined, compatibilism then addresses the nature of the free agency of man in respect to the theological proposition known as determinism and/or the biblical truth of the omniscient nature of God. The foundational issue is how man can be held accountable for his actions if his actions were always going to occur (i.e., the future is not subject to change) and could not have been anything other than that which occurred. Although there are numerous passages of Scripture that address this issue, there are three primary passages to examine.

    The story of Joseph and his brothers
    The first is the story of Joseph and his brothers (Genesis 37). Joseph was hated by his brothers because their father, Jacob, loved Joseph more than any of his other sons (Genesis 37:3) and because of Joseph’s dreams and their interpretation (Genesis 37:5-11). At an opportune time, Joseph’s brothers sold him as a slave to traveling Midianite traders. Then they dipped his tunic in the blood of a slain goat in order to deceive their father into thinking Joseph had been mauled by a beast (Genesis 37:18-33). After many years, during which Joseph had been blessed by the Lord, Joseph’s brothers meet him in Egypt, and Joseph reveals himself to them (Genesis 45:3-4). It is Joseph’s discussion with his brothers that is most pertinent to the issue:

    “So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh, lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt” (Genesis 45:8).

    What makes this statement startling is that Joseph had previously said his brothers had, in fact, sold him into Egypt (Genesis 45:4-5). A few chapters later, the concept of compatibilism is presented:

    “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:20).

    The Genesis story tells us that it was, in fact, the brothers who sold Joseph into Egypt. However, Joseph makes it clear that God had done so. Those who reject the concept of compatibilism would say that this verse is simply stating that God “used” Joseph’s brothers’ actions for good. However, this is not what the text says. From Genesis 45-50, we are told that (1) Joseph’s brothers had sent Joseph to Egypt, (2) God had sent to Joseph to Egypt, (3) Joseph’s brothers had evil intentions in sending Joseph to Egypt, and (4) God had good intentions in sending Joseph to Egypt. So, the question is, who sent Joseph to Egypt? The bewildering answer is that both Joseph’s brothers and God did. It was one action being carried out by two entities, the brothers and God doing it simultaneously.

    The commission of Assyria
    The second passage that reveals compatibilism is found in Isaiah 10, a prophetic warning passage for God’s people. As divinely promised in Deuteronomy 28-29, God is sending a nation to punish His people for their sins. Isaiah 10:6 says that Assyria is the rod of God’s anger, “commissioned” against God’s people to “seize loot and snatch plunder, and to trample them down like mud in the streets.” Notice, however, what God says about Assyria:

    “Yet [Assyria] does not so intend, Nor does it plan so in its heart, But rather it is its purpose to destroy And to cut off many nations” (Isaiah 10:7, NASB).

    God’s intent in the Assyrian invasion is to inflict His righteous judgment against sin, and the intent of the Assyrians is to “destroy and cut off many nations.” Two different purposes, two different entities acting to bring about this purpose, in one, single action. As we read further, God reveals that, although this destruction is determined and decreed by Him (Isaiah 10:23), He will still punish the Assyrians because of the “arrogant heart of the king of Assyria and the pomp of his haughtiness” (Isaiah 10:12, cf. Isaiah 10:15). Even though God Himself had infallibly determined the judgment of a disobedient people, He holds those who brought the judgment accountable for their own actions.

    The crucifixion of Jesus Christ
    The third passage of Scripture that speaks of compatibilism is found in Acts 4:23-28. As revealed in Acts 2:23-25, Christ’s death on the cross was carried out by the “predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God.” Acts 4:27-28 further reveals that the actions of Herod, Pontius Pilate, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel had been determined and decreed by God Himself to occur as they “gathered together against” Jesus and did “what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen.” Although God had determined that Christ should die, those responsible for His death were still held accountable for their actions. Christ was put to death by wicked men, “yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer” (Isaiah 53:10). Once again, the answer to the question "who put Jesus to death?" is both God and the wicked people—two purposes carried out by two entities within a single action.

    There are other passages of Scripture that pertain to the concept of compatibilism, such as God hardening the hearts of individuals (e.g., Exodus 4:21; Joshua 11:20; Isaiah 63:17). While compatibilism seems bewildering to us (Job 9:10; Isaiah 55:8-11; Romans 11:33), this truth has been revealed by God Himself as the means by which His sovereign decree is reconciled with the will of man. God is sovereign over all things (Psalm 115:3, Daniel 4:35, Matthew 10:29-30), God knows all things (Job 37:16; Psalm 147:5; 1 John 3:19-20), and man is held accountable for what he does (Genesis 18:25; Acts 17:31; Jude 1:15). Truly, His ways are unfathomable (Job 9:10; Romans 11:33), and so we should trust in the Lord with all our hearts and lean not on our own understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6).


    What is compatibilism?
     
  15. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    If this is limited to the Apostles then verses 1-10 are as well. That is usually my point when I post verse 16. Meaning we can't have it both ways. I think the Vine discourse was Jesus' way of telling His 11 why Judas did not abide in Him and they did. It was encouragement and warning.
     
  16. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    I think there is a universalist thread or two on this. But there seems to be a distinction between not wanting any to perish and the Father giving Christ His sheep.

    John 10: NASB

    22At that time the Feast of the Dedication took place at Jerusalem; 23it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple in the portico of Solomon. 24The Jews then gathered around Him, and were saying to Him, “How long will You keep us in suspense? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me. 26“But you do not believe because you are not of My sheep. 27“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29“My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30“I and the Father are one.”

    Jesus makes a distinction here who are His and not His. Earlier in the chapter Jesus says:

    11“I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.

    Thus making another distinction that He lays down His life for the sheep which is an exclusive of the "all" or "the world" in other passages. Which those other passages need to be seen in the Light of the words of Christ in John 10.
     
  17. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Some people will call odd out of the blue thoughts like this intuition, we know it's God. :)
     
  18. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    Yes God does not want programmed worship or a puppet show. I think we need to consider what YHWH says of the covenant He would make with Israel and by extension all who are in Christ. This is the "I will" covenant and perhaps @Dave L is mentioning receiving a new heart before we act in any way goes back to this passage:

    Ezekiel 36: NASB

    22“Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act, but for My holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you went. 23I will vindicate the holiness of My great name which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD,” declares the Lord GOD, “when I prove Myself holy among you in their sight. 24“For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land. 25“Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27“I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. 28“You will live in the land that I gave to your forefathers; so you will be My people, and I will be your God. 29“Moreover, I will save you from all your uncleanness; and I will call for the grain and multiply it, and I will not bring a famine on you. 30“I will multiply the fruit of the tree and the produce of the field, so that you will not receive again the disgrace of famine among the nations. 31“Then you will remember your evil ways and your deeds that were not good, and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and your abominations. 32“I am not doing this for your sake,” declares the Lord GOD, “let it be known to you. Be ashamed and confounded for your ways, O house of Israel!”
     
  19. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    Not Calvinism nor any Reformed theology. I think the OP is doing a poor job of explaining how God changes the heart to receive the Gospel. Like the souls who were pricked to the heart in Acts 2. As we see in Ezekiel 36 as I posted up thread:

    Ezekiel 36: NASB

    22
    “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act, but for My holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you went. 23“I will vindicate the holiness of My great name which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD,” declares the Lord GOD, “when I prove Myself holy among you in their sight. 24“For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land. 25“Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27“I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. 28“You will live in the land that I gave to your forefathers; so you will be My people, and I will be your God. 29“Moreover, I will save you from all your uncleanness; and I will call for the grain and multiply it, and I will not bring a famine on you. 30“I will multiply the fruit of the tree and the produce of the field, so that you will not receive again the disgrace of famine among the nations. 31“Then you will remember your evil ways and your deeds that were not good, and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and your abominations. 32“I am not doing this for your sake,” declares the Lord GOD, “let it be known to you. Be ashamed and confounded for your ways, O house of Israel!”
     
  20. redleghunter

    redleghunter Thank You Jesus! Supporter

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    Are you a universalist?
     
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