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Featured If Calvinism is correct

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by ByTheSpirit, Jul 12, 2017.

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  1. sdowney717

    sdowney717 Newbie

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    Paul teaches that the calling of God is a certain salvation.
    'But to those who are called', means by
    necessity or your twisting the meaning, some are not called.
    And that God has chosen to call only some to actually obtain salvation.


    1 Corinthians 1:23-29New King James Version (NKJV)

    23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

    Glory Only in the Lord
    26 For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. 27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; 28 and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, 29 that no flesh should glory in His presence.
     
  2. Si_monfaith

    Si_monfaith Let God alone answer through us

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    The reaction is gratitude over God's infinite love in His Son Jesus for having elected me.
     
  3. Bible2+

    Bible2+ Matthew 4:4

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    A Christian's answer to that question might be affected if he realized the doctrine of double predestination isn't from Calvinism, but from the Bible itself.

    That is, the Bible itself shows God doesn't love everyone, for He hates the nonelect (Romans 9:11-22). During their lifetime, God hardens the nonelect in their sinfulness instead of showing them His mercy (Romans 9:18) because He created them to be vessels of His wrath (Romans 9:20-22, Proverbs 16:4). They were of old ordained to condemnation (Jude 1:4). They were appointed to disobedience (1 Peter 2:8, Acts 2:23). But God never forces them or anyone else to commit sin. He never even tempts anyone to commit sin (James 1:13-15). All people will justly be held accountable for their deeds (Romans 2:6-8), for neither election nor nonelection takes away the free will of people.

    God created nonelect people to be vessels of His wrath instead of vessels of His mercy so He might eternally make known His wrath and power (Romans 9:21-22, Proverbs 16:4, Revelation 14:10-11). And God created elect people to be vessels of His mercy so He might eternally make known His mercy, glory and wisdom (Romans 9:23, Ephesians 3:10, Ephesians 1:8,11).

    God wants these aspects of His character to be known both to humans and angels (Ephesians 3:10), neither of which group yet knows experientially the full extent of God's qualities and abilities (1 Corinthians 2:9; 1 Peter 1:12b). For example, the full extent of God's wrath won't be known to humans and angels until Satan and his fallen angels and all non-Christians of all times are cast into the eternal suffering of the lake of fire and brimstone (Matthew 25:41,46, Revelation 20:10,15, Revelation 14:10-11), and Christians and holy angels go forth from the city of New Jerusalem on the New Earth to witness the suffering of non-Christians in the lake of fire (Isaiah 66:24), the eternal hell (Mark 9:45-46), and realize by seeing it, not only the extent of God's wrath, but by it, by way of contrast, the extent of God's mercy toward them (Lamentations 3:22-23). Just as "up" can't be eternally known for what it is without the eternal coexistence of "down", so God's mercy can't be eternally known for what it is without the eternal coexistence of His wrath.
     
  4. Bible2+

    Bible2+ Matthew 4:4

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    Hopefully, it wouldn't affect any Christian's view of God in a negative way. For as mere humans we must be careful not to condemn the way God Himself has chosen to reveal all He is (Romans 9:20-24): both a loving being (1 John 4:8, John 15:13, Matthew 26:28) and a vengeful being (Hebrews 12:29, Luke 12:49; 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9). We mustn't say it's evil for God not to elect and save everyone, and to send the nonelect and unsaved into eternal suffering (Matthew 25:41,46, Revelation 14:10-11). For by saying this we would be making humans more important than God and His wishes. And this is something which Satan causes people to do, just as Jesus Christ at one point "said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men" (Matthew 16:23).

    No matter how it may irk the Satanic pride of us humans, wanting to be important like God (Isaiah 14:12-14), so important that God would never even think of not saving all of us, and casting some of us into hell forever (Isaiah 14:15, Revelation 20:10,15), we must always remember it's God's right to do whatever He wants with His creatures (Romans 9:21-23), and that even all of humanity together is infinitesimal and worth less than nothing compared with God (Isaiah 40:17-18, Daniel 4:35). We must resist our Satanic, human pride (which we can unconsciously disguise with good-sounding words about God's love for us), and completely humble ourselves before God (James 4:7-10; 1 Peter 5:6-8), pleading He might have mercy on us sinners (Luke 18:13-14).

    Satan would love nothing more than to get us humans in our sinful pride to wrongly reject YHWH God of the Bible as evil, so we will end up in the lake of fire forever with Satan and his fallen angels (Matthew 25:41,46, Revelation 20:10,15, Revelation 14:10-11, Mark 9:43-44). The future Antichrist, who will be empowered by Satan (2 Thessalonians 2:9, Revelation 13:4), will utterly revile YHWH (Revelation 13:6, Daniel 11:36). And no doubt one of his chief blasphemies against YHWH will be that YHWH is an evil god. (This is one of the ancient blasphemies of Gnosticism, another being the antichrist lie that Christ isn't in the flesh: 2 John 1:7.) During the future Antichrist's literal 3.5-year worldwide reign, the world will be deceived into rejecting YHWH and worshipping Lucifer (Satan, the dragon) and the Antichrist (the individual-man aspect of Revelation's "beast") instead (Revelation 13:4-18, Revelation 12:9).

    It's the ultimate proof of the humility of Christians (James 4:10, Acts 20:19a, Matthew 23:12) for them to accept the facts of double predestination (Romans 9:11-24) and an eternal hell (Matthew 25:41,46) without rejecting YHWH as being evil for these things. For it means Christians have humbly accepted the fact the wholly-good YHWH God (Deuteronomy 32:4; 1 John 1:5) is infinitely more important than even all of humanity together (Isaiah 40:17, Daniel 4:35).
     
  5. Bible2+

    Bible2+ Matthew 4:4

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    Note that the Bible shows the elect are those individuals, whether Jews or Gentiles, who were chosen (elected) and predestinated by God before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-11; 2 Thessalonians 2:13), before they were born (Romans 9:11-24), to become initially saved by faith in Jesus Christ and His Gospel at some point during their lifetime (Acts 13:48b; 2 Timothy 2:10; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4). This initial salvation is possible only because of Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross for our sins (Romans 3:25-26), which was also foreordained by God before the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8; 1 Peter 1:19-20).

    Everyone on his own is wholly corrupt (Romans 3:9-12). So it's impossible for people on their own to ever believe in Jesus Christ and His Gospel and be initially saved (1 Corinthians 15:1-4, John 20:31; 1 John 5:13) through their own will (Romans 9:16, John 1:13, John 6:65) or their own intellect (1 Corinthians 1:18 to 2:16). Unsaved people can't understand the Gospel (1 Corinthians 2:14; 1 Corinthians 1:18) because only initially saved people, who have received the miraculous gift of some measure of God's own Spirit, can understand it (1 Corinthians 2:11-16).

    The nonelect can't ever believe in Jesus Christ and His Gospel and be initially saved, even when they're shown the truth (John 8:42-47, John 10:26, Matthew 13:38-42). For the ability to believe in Jesus and His Gospel comes only to the elect (Acts 13:48b) wholly by God's grace as a miraculous gift from God (Ephesians 2:8, John 6:65; 1 Corinthians 3:5b, Romans 12:3b, Hebrews 12:2) as the elect read (or hear) God's Word the Holy Bible (Romans 10:17, Acts 13:48, Acts 26:22-23), just as the ability to repent comes only as a miraculous gift from God (2 Timothy 2:25, Acts 11:18). Satan blinds the minds of non-Christians so on their own they can't repent and acknowledge the truth of God's Word (2 Corinthians 4:4; 2 Timothy 2:25-26).
     
  6. RadiantGrace

    RadiantGrace Member

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    I would know such a thing is not a god and is not worthy of worship. In fact, I think Calvin's representation of God is far more horrifying, evil, and demonic, then all of images created before him to represent the devil. In other words, Calvin's concept of God is far worse than anything said about the devil.

    The idea that a God would create people that have no choice but to be sinners, and then punish them eternally for being sinners is irrational. I think some people feel very small and like to believe they were especially chosen by God for salvation, even if it means the God they worship punishes people who have no choice but to do the thing for which they will be punished.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2017
  7. Bible2+

    Bible2+ Matthew 4:4

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    It would be irrational if double predestination took away free will. But it doesn't. For God never forces anyone to commit sin. He never even tempts anyone to commit sin (James 1:13-15).

    But because God is omniscient, before He created Adam, He knew that Adam and all his descendants (except Jesus Christ) would become sinners.

    Someone might then ask: "But doesn't omniscience negate free will, so either God isn't omniscient or there's no free will?"

    The answer would be God is definitely omniscient, for in Him is found all knowledge (Colossians 2:2b-3; 1 John 3:20b). He's able to declare the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10), and His foreknowledge is determinate (Acts 2:23, Revelation 1:1). But His omniscience coexists with His giving people free will. He still lets people choose for themselves what they're going to do (Joshua 24:15, Deuteronomy 30:19, Isaiah 1:19-20, Philemon 1:14).

    An analogy for how people can have a meaningful free will and yet God can already know what they're going to choose to do, would be a symphony conductor who wanted to make a film of a "Free Will Symphony" which sounded good enough to show off to the world. So he told his symphony musicians his plan, set up a movie camera in front of them, and said each of them could start playing whatever he or she wanted for an hour. But when they all started playing, it sounded awful for the entire hour. It was utter cacophony. So the conductor sent them home and told them to come back the next day and try again. The next day sounded worse than the first. And the day after that was also bad. This went on day after day for months, until one day the most amazing sound arose from the symphony, a congeries of all the different melodies and rhythms which was unlike anything anyone had heard before. So the conductor kept the movie of that day, and showed it off to the world.

    But when the symphony musicians began watching the movie at its world premiere, with all the most-famous musicians of the world seated around them in the theater, some of the symphony musicians began to squirm in their seats. For example, one of the bass players had happened to choose that day (the day the movie was made) just to stand there and not play anything. The movie showed him eating Twix, and just staring off into space for the whole hour. And one of the violin players had just happened to choose that day not to play anything either, but to file her nails and flip through a magazine.

    After the movie was over, those two musicians, as well as some others who had been publicly mortified, filed a civil suit against the conductor for defamation of character. At the trial, they testified before the judge: "Before the movie was shown, we all had good reputations as fine musicians. Now we are the laughingstocks of the musical world. Our careers might never recover from this. The conductor knew before he showed the movie to the world that it would result in our ruin, and yet he showed it anyway. Clearly, his intent was malicious, and we seek damages".

    But then the conductor testified: "Your honor, I honestly had no malice toward these musicians. The procedure of making the film was quite random. We made scores of different films, and in many of them, these musicians played brilliantly. But the sound of the symphony as a whole on those days was unbearable to listen to, so those films had to be rejected. It was just by chance that the one day which sounded wonderful, they happened to have made fools of themselves by their own free will. They themselves chose to act that way that day. I didn't make them do anything".

    The judge agreed and dismissed the case. He told the musicians: "I'm sorry, but you don't really have a legal leg to stand on. For you knew the conductor was making a film of that day, and the plan was to show it off to the world if it sounded good. It's your own fault you chose to act the way you did that day" (cf. James 1:13-15).

    Similar to this analogy, before God created the world, He could have reviewed an infinite number of different threads (as it were) of all the possible free-willed sequences of events which could occur in the world, based on all the possible choices each individual could make during his or her lifetime. For example, in one thread, right after God created Adam, Adam could have chosen first to walk around the south side of the Garden of Eden, while in another thread, Adam chose first to walk around the north side, and in another he chose first just to sit on the grass and look at the trees, and so on through all the different possibilities for his first choice, and then through all the different possibilities for all his subsequent choices, and then through all the possible choices made by everyone else from the beginning of the world to the end of it. After reviewing the infinite number of threads of all the possible sequences of free-willed choices, God could have chosen to create, to bring into actual existence, that one thread which would give Him the best opportunity to eternally show both His mercy and His holy wrath (Romans 9:22-23).

    Also similar to the movie analogy is the scientific idea of the "block universe", meaning that time, from the viewpoint of physics in itself (that is, outside of how humans happen to experience time) there's no arrow of time: The past, present and future of all space in the universe exist as one block of a four-dimensional space-time. So the past still exists, and the future already exists. This is similar to how all the frames of a film, all its moments of time, exist at the same time in one reel of film, and yet we humans happen to experience a film only one frame at a time, and in one direction. Also, with regard to the "block universe", quantum-level experiments have shown the future determines the past as much as the past determines the future. So from the viewpoint of Christians, this means they can pray for God's will to be done in the past, just as they can pray for it to be done in the future. For example, if they remember a close call in their past when they just barely escaped having a car accident, they can presently pray God would keep them from having that accident, and this could help them to avoid it. That is, they could have avoided it because years later they prayed to avoid it.
     
  8. Bible2+

    Bible2+ Matthew 4:4

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    Note that even all of humanity together should feel very small, compared with God Himself. For:

    Isaiah 40:17 All nations before him are as nothing; and they are counted to him less than nothing, and vanity.
    18 ┬ÂTo whom then will ye liken God? or what likeness will ye compare unto him?

    --

    God and His wishes are infinitely more important than even all of humanity together (Isaiah 40:17). Because of this, there's no perfect analogy to express how great God is compared with humanity (Isaiah 40:18).

    The closest analogy involving living things would be how great a man is compared with bacteria. Imagine a microbiologist wanted it to be known how advanced he was in his field. So first he created a new strain of bacteria from scratch via genetic engineering. Then he grew a batch of the bacteria until he had billions of bacteria growing as a colony on a substrate spread across a large glass plate. Then he created some super-bacteria food which could make them live forever, perfectly healthy without any stress at all (but also without ever dividing and multiplying). And then he created some bacteria poison which when added to the food wouldn't kill them, but stress them just enough to make them shrivel up in a stressed state indefinitely.

    Then the microbiologist regularly placed the food without any poison (what he called "the good food") into just 1/10 of the colony, and the food mixed with the poison (what he called "the bad food") in the other 9/10 of the colony. Then he published a scientific paper announcing what he'd done. A few years later, he published another paper showing how none of the bacteria had died over the years, but had remained alive all that time, the ones with the good food remaining perfectly healthy without any stress at all, and the ones with the bad food remaining shriveled up in a stressed state.

    When word got out of what he'd done, no one complained about it. There was no uproar from any group called: "People for the Ethical Treatment of Bacteria". Nor did anyone picket outside his lab with signs reading: "Are you loving to leave 9/10 of the bacteria in a stressed state forever?", or: "A loving person would give the good food to all the bacteria!". Instead, everyone applauded the microbiologist for his skill in creating a new strain of bacteria and showing he could keep total control over it and do with it whatever he wanted.

    Someone might say this analogy fails because bacteria don't have feelings. But how do we know bacteria don't have feelings? Don't they move away from things harmful to them and move toward things beneficial to them? How could they do this without experiencing some sensation? Does a man then have to love all bacteria and never do them any harm simply because they experience some level of sensation, no matter how infinitesimal it may be compared with humans'? And if a man doesn't have to do that, because of how much greater human sensation is than that of bacteria, then why would anyone think God has to love all humans and never do them any harm, simply because they experience some level of sensation, no matter how infinitesimal it may be compared to His own, infinite consciousness?

    God's consciousness is so infinitely greater than humans' that, in another analogy, they're like mere pots of clay compared to Him as the potter, and:

    Romans 9:21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?
    22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:
    23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory . . .
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
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