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Featured James Disproves Free Will

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Dave L, Dec 18, 2019.

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  1. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    James is saying believers cannot control the tongue. Why so many moderators on the forums?
     
  2. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    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, an indicative) does not mean a person can do this apart from grace. God must set us free from the innate love of sin and natural hostility toward God, if we are to 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.

    Looking at this chapter, we see that some believed while others didn't. Why did not all of 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 not able to obey. Some get mercy but the rest get justice.

    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 the heart to follow God's command to repent (Ezekiel 36:26, et al). 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 (free will proponent) 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?"

    .
     
  3. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    The problem I see with your #2 is that you seem to be conflating natural moral ability (aka; a human being able to bridle his own tongue via his own natural resources as a lost one) which is what Dave is referring to with what one can do through Christ. It appears to me, you just put the cart before the horse and applied a category error in the same process. What one can do in Christ is never the same as what one can do without him. That is the point I think you are missing here.

    Even as a believer you can curse like a drunken sailor, etc.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2019
  4. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    So my point is that legitimate, honest love is not what we are capable of without him. Sure, we have a kind of thing that may seem permanent to us, and seems like the same love, such as sympathy, or caring for someone's well-being, or the kind of self-sacrificing love as a person giving his life for someone else, or harder yet --to live for someone else, the love of a mother for her child, or a child for her father, and so on --yes, these are genuine, (yet they pale in comparison to what God has done for us, if by no other standard than permanence). When this is the kind of love one has for God, it still lacks legitimacy until God is the one in that person, one with that person, giving that person the kind of everlasting love God has for himself.

    With 'free will' he could still "make" us love Him... Try to understand, it is not a forced thing. It is a change of character.
     
  5. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    who's to say its not God-ordained for all the moderators to be on the forums?
     
  6. JacksBratt

    JacksBratt Searching for Truth

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    Very good.... well... OK.... but what has that got to do with free will?
     
  7. JacksBratt

    JacksBratt Searching for Truth

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    I think that this may be good for another thread.... what our capacity for love is.... Because, I believe that non believers and believers are both capable of the same depth of love... I think that it is this love, directed toward our savior, that God is looking for...
     
  8. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    It has everything to do with it. Someone who is spiritually dead cannot please God. So the claim to a free will choice unto salvation before one has been regenerated is not possible, biblically speaking. Remember, God's will is being done on earth as it has ALREADY been done in heaven.
     
  9. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    I disagree with the idea that "non believers and believers are both capable of the same depth of love".

    The lost cannot LOVE God with that desperately wicked heart of stone, but believers can because they have had that stoney heart removed and replaced with a receptive heart that Does Love God. That new heart is capable of loving God fully whereas the old heart cant love God at all.
     
  10. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The will is dead to spiritual discernment and cannot recognize the true Christ. It can only form an idol to worship of what it thinks Christ should be.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2019
  11. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It is, because nobody (me included) cannot control the tongue.
     
  12. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    Agreed, 100%!!
     
  13. Mark Quayle

    Mark Quayle Well-Known Member Supporter

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    So you think your "own" "genuine" feelings, thoughts and deeds are substantial to the same degree that they would be with God doing them in us? In my experience, I am so flippant, so emotional and fickle, so weak, so lacking in integrity, understanding and knowledge, not to mention wisdom, that "my" decision to "accept him" is entirely questionable; no, brother, only by the gift of God --the action of his Spirit within me, making me a new creation-- is my faith made genuine. It is HIS work, and though it consumes me to do it, it is HIM doing it.
     
  14. chilehed

    chilehed Veteran

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    As I've already said: God gives us the grace to be able to make a free act of the will to bind ourselves to him. That's what faith is: an act of the will in which one turns toward God and away from sin; in which we decide that we will cooperate, with our intellect and will, with the divine grace that God gives us to enable us to comply with the moral law; it is a free response of the human person to the initiative of God; it is a personal adherence of the whole man to the God who reveals himself.
     
  15. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    Sorry but your will is NEVER Free. Its either in bondage to the old nature or the new one. You will only choose according to the nature that your will is in bondage to. The claim that we cooperate IS BOGUS and unbiblical. God saves you according to the whole counsel of HIS will not his will and yours added to it.
     
  16. Clete

    Clete Member

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    Missed a post? I quoted your own opening post. How can you miss your own post?

    The argument you make in the open post of this thread implies that the word "tame" means to totally control. The problem is that the word doesn't mean that and so your argument fails.

    James doesn't disprove free will. If anything it's the opposite as I have already argued in my previos post.
     
  17. chilehed

    chilehed Veteran

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    Says you. That's something you've completely made up in your own head, and you're no more capable of finding it in the bible than Dave L is.
     
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  18. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I missed your reply.
     
  19. 1Reformedman

    1Reformedman Active Member

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    Is that right? I made it up, huh? I suggest you study determinism then come back and let's discuss it. Oh and while you are at it study Church history and find out that the doctrine of free will is a pagan doctrine that crept into the RCC long, long ago.
     
  20. Kaon

    Kaon Well-Known Member

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    Prophecy itself shows our will isn't our own.

    We have limited will to respond to the stimuli we encounter; we have never controlled our destiny (as the platitude in the West goes). The only entities that have 100% free will are holy entities - And they give 100% of their will to the Most High God (which is part of what makes them Holy).
     
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