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U/C Unconditional election vs. Conditional election

Discussion in 'Salvation (Soteriology)' started by Blackhawk, Apr 11, 2002.

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  1. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

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    Scott, In my previous post, I meant to say "apostate churches and cults". And please don't think I am calling you apostate.

    I just think you've embraced something you had heard of and had already come predisposed to the teaching.

    Take a vacation from your studies so, you can reflect on what you've learned, and then put it all together, the apostle Paul took 3 years off and then came forth preaching HIM who he persecuted.

    In the end, after all that has been said and done; the Armenian position, according to Ben and Scott, man has to keep the law perfectly, in order to keep himself saved.

    Something that the law was never intended to do since; " by the keeping of it, there no flesh shall justified before HIM."

    "For by the law comes the knowledge of Sin, and it is our schoolmaster that brings us to Christ."

    Furthermore, at the First Council, of Jerusalem, the Apostles and Elders, rejected that one must keep the law of Moses, since this was the question set before this body,
    this proposed point trying to be adhered to herein, comes from the pit, trying keep to men from fully trusting God, and placing their trust in themselves.

    Imagine, afterall, according to the teaching, God is unable to save, until given the NOD, WINK, or SIGN by the man being saved.
     
  2. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson I Like Traffic Lights

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    I was a Calvinist until I actually read Calvin and cross-referenced what he said with the Bible. I found that Calvin misrepresented text after text to "get" to his position. I read the Bible again from a different view and found the position I'm in now - that God actually gives us a choice.

    I did that. I was in school for four years, took about 3 years off for counseling school, where I wasn't a minister, and now I'm back. You're implying that all I need is time off to become a Calvinist - that's somewhat offensive and narrow-minded.

    Nope. Never said that. According to Arminius himself, salvation could not be "lost." You're misrepresenting our position.

    Which is why we have to choose CHrist.

    Not saying that we have to follow the law to be saved. Where do you come up with this?

    Not that He is unable. He just chooses not to. There's a huge difference. God is able to save all men - in BOTH of our systems, he chooses NOT to save all men. No difference there.

    SEC, who isn't a heretic or apostate or anything like that.
     
  3. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

    300
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    Scott,


    The work that you have read, considered and refer to is obviously, Dr. R.T. Kendall's "Calvin and English Calvanism to 1649.

    The real question isn't what Calvin believed and taught for that is well documented but, whether John Calvin's theology was in Europe and the English speaking world misunderstood, distorted and eventually used to repudiate this reformer's teaching.

    I say, it is the latter.

    The controversy aroused by the questions you have been raising, clearly shows you have swallowedd Dr. Kendall's writings hook line and sinker. These points raised led to the charge that Puritanism was unbiblical theological and a strait-jacketed form of spiritual bondage. Some have even held that the Puritans taught a form of spiritual bondage, others that they taught a form of salvation by human works. Many deny the "Westminster Confession of Faith" as a proper expression of the Christian Faith.

    Dr Kendall's works have been repudiated and the weakness of his arguments have been overcome by well-reasoned accounts and a look at the central themes of Puritan theology, the atonement of Christ, faith and assurance, and Christian conversion;

    Paul Helm, the author of "Calvin and the Calvinists" demonstartes that puritan theology is wholly consistent with Calvin's own position.

    By the way, the author was teaching at the University of Liverpool, at the writing of his book.


    My point to you is, while it is good to understand doctrinal positions of these reformers, not one of them (doctrinal positions) will ever add or take away anything to the salvation of any one of them that are called of GOD,

    Complete knowledge of the doctrine of election is not necessary for anyone to be saved; it is only years later that the child of GOD seeks to undersatnd what, why, and how it all happened, and depending who has influenced him in his young christians years, that, is what he believes.

    Why argue about something, ultimately lies within the veil of the Sovereignty of GOD, he choses to reveal all His truths to all that receive them by faith, and has made these truths evident to some while keeping them hidding from others, why?,

    I say because of that sin, ......"that so easily besets us"

    Lack of faith. I include myself herein.
     
  4. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

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    Scott,


    By the way I can't accept that you used the Bible and the Bible alone to come up with your theory.
     
  5. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    It is false theology to say that Jesus is revealed through the things that are made.
    "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made…" (Rm1:20)
    "All things came into being through Him (Jesus), and apart from Him nothing came into being that exists." (Jn1:3)

    Likewise, just because the word 'all' is used in a sentence, it doesn't have to mean 'everyone'
    "So then through one transgression (Adam's) came condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness (Jesus-on-the-Cross) came justification to all men" (Rm5:18) ---Why is the first "pas-anthropos", the WORLD, and the SECOND "pas-anthropos" is ONLY-GOD'S-ELECT?

    "He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for those of the whole world" (1Jn2:2) ---Why is this either, "also for those of the whole-ONLY-ELECT-world", or you accept it IS "the world" but reason it's an "empty-hypothetical, they technically COULD be saved if He had CALLED them but since He DIDN'T they haven't a chance" ? Why can it not allow for, "Jesus died to take away the sin of the WORLD" ("Kosmos"---circle of Earth, ALL HUMANITY) (Jn1:29)?

    God's predestination of His elect does not violate the elect's free will. That is a straw man attack on the truth.
    Black-and-white, either we receive Him by our own choice, or He irresistibly drags us towards salvation. "Free Will" says that man can and do decline the calling-to-salvation. As the parable in Matt22.

    Free will has limits. Everyone knows that. Read Romans 7…
    Romans 7 is a perfect example of limitless free will. Paul has gained a new spiritual nature, but the old fleshly nature still exists and at times wars with the new. The solution is in chapter 8, "set your minds on the Spirit, life---or set your minds on the flesh, death." Absolute free will, before and after salvation.
    "So then, brethren, we are under OBLIGATION, not to the flesh to live according to the flesh… but (to live) by the Spirit putting to death the deeds of the flesh; for all who ARE BEING LED by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God…" (Rm8:12-14) We choose to follow the Spirit, as He leads us to put to death our flesh… Perfect free will, all the way…

    How is it that the sending of Jesus was a demonstration of God's love for them when He knew they would reject Jesus?
    Already answered that. God is perfectly just. Each person has the same opportunity, Jesus died for ALL. "He who BELIEVES is not judged, but he who DOES NOT BELIEVE is condemned already". Jn3:18 Perfect free will…

    "I have set before you life-and-prosperity, and death-and-adversity; I command you to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, that the Lord your God may bless you in the land where you are entering. But if your heart turns away and you will not obey, but are drawn away to worship other gods and serve them, then I declare to you today that you shall surely perish. I call Heaven and Earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. SO CHOOSE LIFE in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days." Deut30 This is God's presentation, His approach. To be perfectly just, He must allow perfect free will. they are without excuse…

    But earlier Ben said: No. The Jews did not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not received Him. Because Peter had received JESUS as his LORD and SAVIOR, Peter believed He was the Messiah. It's not a "catch-22", it's a "receive-Him, or NOT".

    That is why I asked him. His response is to say they all mean the same thing. That makes his earlier statements nonsense. If believing in Him and receiving Him are the same thing then why does Ben use the word 'because'? [see above]. And if believing and receiving are the same thing, then why does Ben say because Peter received Jesus as His Lord and Savior he believed on Him? Why did he do it I ask and Ben says because he did it. Like I said, circular.

    Believing in Jesus, and receiving Him, is the same thing. Believing He was the Messiah, is different. Peter believed-in-Jesus/RECEIVED-Him, so Peter also believed He was the Messiah. The Pharisees did not believe-in-Him/receive-Him. So they did not accept His kingship.

    So that leaves my question unanswered. Why do people choose to believe on Jesus [and become one of the elect] and others do not? No Arminianist has given any reasonable answer to that question.
    It's called, "Free Will". Some men choose to love God, some prefer sin. "I shall take their hearts-of-stone and give them hearts-of-flesh, so that they may walk in My statutes and keep My commandments. Then they will be My people and I will be their God. BUT those whose hearts go after detestable things and abominations, I shall bring their conduct down upon their heads!" Ez11:19-21 Free will from the start to the finish. Some love God, some love sin…

    God's truth is not revealed to all men, which is plain by 1 Cor 1:18 "For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God." If they knew it as truth, it wouldn't be foolishness to them. See 1st Cor. 1:21, "For seeing that in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom knew not God, it was God's good pleasure through the foolishness of the preaching to save them that believe."
    You have answered your own question. For those who believe/receive-Jesus, the Spirit reveals truths. Exactly as in Jn6, the Spirit revealed Jesus' kingship because he had believed-in/received Jesus. It's not very complicated…

    1Cor1:24 says, "to those who are THE called"---it is not a stretch to understand it as meaning, "the saved"; consider Rm8:29-30, He "foreknew, predestined-Christlikeness, called, justified, glorified"… It simply does not say that ALL-who-are-called-WILL-be-saved. It can easily mirror "The-called", as in "the-elect", as in "THEY-WHO-BELIEVE/RECEIVED (Jesus)"…

    To repeat, Calvinism and free will are not incompatible.

    Since God knows in advance who will choose Him, only those He already knows will choose Him will in fact choose Him. Since according to God's foreknowledge these elect must choose God they really have no other choice but to choose God. Likewise everyone else CANNOT chose God because God didn't foresee them choosing Him, so they are locked out. They cannot choose God.

    What's the definition of "straw man"? Either we have free will in our choice or not. Merely knowing they WILL choose Him does not CAUSE them to choose Him. BECAUSE He is just, then if they perish, the CAUSE must be their OWN…

    In summary, it is God who chooses to save whom He loves, and He saves them without violating their free wills. The rest are condemned for their willful sins and think the gospel foolish.
    It is God who chooses to save whoever believes . Rm10:13

    In the end, after all that has been said and done; the Armenian position, according to Ben and Scott, man has to keep the law perfectly, in order to keep himself saved.
    Terms such as "Armenian position" are irrelevant. Scripture says we are NOT under law, but we "keep ourselves saved" by "keeping ourselves IN CHRIST" (Jd21). "Abiding in Him & His love" (1Jn4:16)


    I have been slow to respond, because my heart has been burdened.

    "Now the fruits of the flesh are …disputes, factions, dissensions…" (Gal5:19-20)
    "Pursue righteousness, faith. Love, peace with those that call on the Lord out of a pure heart, but foolish and undisciplined questionings (arguments) refuse, knowing that they beget contentions." 2Tim2:22-23

    And yet, "earnestly contend for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints". Jd3
    "We are destroying arguments and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ…" (2Cor10:5)

    It is my prayer that I have NOT sinned, that I have NOT engaged in contentions and foolish arguments, but that I have "in all things shown myself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, that they …may have nothing bad to say about me." Titus2:7-8

    NOR do I wish to present myself as "Mr. SUPER-PIOUS", from some elevated plane, maybe a "special line-to-God"---I am not; just a man, who loves God with every fiber of his being, who posts on message boards with the intention of lifting his brothers and sisters, building in the faith, increasing fellowship, teaching and being taught. If I have fallen short, or offended anyone (esp Mike), then I formally, and humbly ask forgiveness.

    I believe discussions should have a goal. Does this one still? Has all that could be said, already been said? Can we come to agreement? Or shall we respect each others' differences?
     
  6. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson I Like Traffic Lights

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    Obviously? What made you come up with that? I actually read Calvin's "Institutes of the Christian Religion."

    For what it's worth, I disagreed with a lot of what Calvin wrote. That is my basis for rejecting Calvinism.

    And again, you assume too much.

    Sorry. Read the Institutes myself.

    Don't care. By the way, John Milton was a Puritan, and his work De Doctrina Christiana is a very good book on Christian Doctrine. He believed in free will, by the way.

    And I'm sure it was lovely in Liverpool that time of year.

    "Called by God." The Bible seems to say that all men are called by God.

    And what happens when the people influencing him were Calvinists, he being a Calvinist himself, and reading closely and changing his mind about that system of doctrine?

    Because both of us claim that God is revealing these things to us by faith. One of us is wrong.

    I used the Bible and a Thayer's Greek Concordance. Granted, I had studied both sides during my time at university, so I knew about them - but you would agree that I'm not an Arminian either, right?
     
  7. seebs

    seebs God Made Me A Skeptic

    +1,462
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    Married
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    Rejecting something because you think it's wrong? Whatever will they think of next!
     
  8. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

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    Dear all,

    It was said…
    It is false theology to say that Jesus is revealed through the things that are made.
    "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made…" (Rm1:20)
    "All things came into being through Him (Jesus), and apart from Him nothing came into being that exists." (Jn1:3)


    Me.
    These are true of God, of whom Jesus is. But these things are not the gospel. These things revealed cannot save anyone by grace. Therefore these scriptures have no direct bearing on the conversation. The Gospel of Jesus has not been revealed to all men [even though to all men God the creator is plainly seen] and hence not all men have the opportunity to be saved through that gospel. Jesus plainly tells us that in Mat. 11:

    25At that time Jesus said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.
    27"All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

    And in Mat 16

    13When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do people say the Son of Man is?"
    14They replied, "Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets."
    15"But what about you?" he asked. "Who do you say I am?"
    16Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ,B the Son of the living God."
    17Jesus replied, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven

    Why is Simon blessed? Because God revealed to him who Jesus was.
    Did others know that truth? No.
    They thought Jesus was John the Baptist, or Elijah, or one of the prophets.

    So where is this belief, that-everyone-knew-who-Jesus-was, coming from? It is a theological construct imagined up by those with a specific doctrinal ax to grind. Sincerely no doubt, but without proper basis in the Word.

    Then it was said.
    Likewise, just because the word 'all' is used in a sentence, it doesn't have to mean 'everyone'
    "So then through one transgression (Adam's) came condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness (Jesus-on-the-Cross) came justification to all men" (Rm5:18) ---Why is the first "pas-anthropos", the WORLD, and the SECOND "pas-anthropos" is ONLY-GOD'S-ELECT?

    Me.
    Easy, ‘all’, or any other word for that matter, doesn’t have to mean the same thing every time it is used. Not all are justified. Ben just quoted Romans 10 and I will remind him:

    . 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

    Do all believe? I think not. Many have not even heard the gospel. Which Romans 10 also speaks to:

    14How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?

    Simply proof texting the Word is no way to have a consistent truthful doctrine. Since ALL have not heard the Gospel, not ALL can believe. Since only by believing can anyone be justified, the ALL in Ben’s example cannot not mean ALL PEOPLE WHO EVER LIVED, so it must mean less than that. ALL therefore [in that context] must mean:

    So then through one transgression (Adam's) came condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness (Jesus-on-the-Cross) came justification to all men [who believe].

    Ben’s next example:

    "He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for those of the whole world" (1Jn2:2) ---Why is this either, "also for those of the whole-ONLY-ELECT-world", or you accept it IS "the world" but reason it's an "empty-hypothetical, they technically COULD be saved if He had CALLED them but since He DIDN'T they haven't a chance" ? Why can it not allow for, "Jesus died to take away the sin of the WORLD" ("Kosmos"---circle of Earth, ALL HUMANITY) (Jn1:29)?


    me
    I already explained to you why it couldn’t, but I am glad to go over it again.
    John 3:16-17 says that Jesus was sent into the world out of the Father’s love, not to condemn man, but to save those who believe. IF God knew who would believe before He made the world [either predicated on the Armenian view that He saw in His foreknowledge who would believe and therefore predestined them or in the Calvinistic view] then He knew that the sacrifice of Jesus would ONLY save the predestined elect. Therefore I asked how it is LOVING act of His to send Jesus to die for the sins of people whom HE KNEW would NEVER believe. You said:




    Next.
    So how is it that John 3:16 means that God loved everybody and showed it by sending Jesus, while all the while knowing only the predestined elect would be saved?

    It's a question of responsibility. Salvation is NOT God-directed, it is "free will". So that God's INTENT allowed only one option for Him---to create mankind, knowing that Adam would fall, to purpose from the beginning Jesus as the "propitiation for the fallen", to make believing the responsibility of each man. This is the application of His sovereignty that He has chosen, MUST have chosen because of His desire (the "FELLOWSHIP/ABIDING" thing)...


    AND
    How does sending Jesus do anything for them, since the purpose of the cross is for the remission of sins and He knew theirs would never be remitted?
    RESPONSIBILITY. For God to be JUST, they must be without excuse. They must be guilty because of their own choice. Thus, Jesus died for all men (Rm5:18,1Jn2:2), and whoever receives/believes/abides in Him, is saved---but those who reject Him, is condemned (Jn3:18)


    me.
    But none of that answered the question of how it was out of the LOVE of God that He sent Jesus to die for the sins of man HE KNEW would never believe. In fact what you propose CONTRADICTS the very next Scripture [John 3:17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. ]. You are postulating that God sent Jesus so they would have no excuse and be rightfully condemned. But that is exactly against the Word. Besides they didn’t need any more condemnation, they were condemned rightfully and justly by their sins.[ Romans 3: 19Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. ] The whole world is held accountable to Him because we have violated the Law, and even those without the Law have violated their own God-given conscience and their own words condemn them. [See Acts 2]

    Ben continued to answer me.
    God's predestination of His elect does not violate the elect's free will. That is a straw man attack on the truth.

    Black-and-white, either we receive Him by our own choice, or He irresistibly drags us towards salvation. "Free Will" says that man can and do decline the calling-to-salvation. As the parable in Matt22.


    Me.
    Black and White it is to Ben in order for him to maintain his position. But he fails to address Acts 4. The parable in Mat. 22 doesn’t support Ben at all. The gospel writers used ‘call’ in a different way then Paul does. Everyone who hears the gospel hears the ‘call’, but that doesn’t mean they understand it as per the Scriptures I gave above. All those who heard Jesus preach didn’t know He was the Son of God, some thought Him John the Baptist, or Elijah, or one of the prophets. Likewise the other scripture from Matthew 11 says this:

    25At that time Jesus said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.
    27"All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

    The truth is hidden from some and is only revealed to those God chooses. The reason the guy in Matt 22 wasn’t saved is because he didn’t know enough. While all the others knew to get the proper clothes [a metaphor for the righteousness of Christ, i.e. being saved, born again. This guy thought he could get in by his own clothes, his own righteousness that is. He didn’t have the truth. It wasn’t revealed to him.


    end part one.
    mike
     
  9. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
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    part two

    Then.
    Free will has limits. Everyone knows that. Read Romans 7…

    Romans 7 is a perfect example of limitless free will. Paul has gained a new spiritual nature, but the old fleshly nature still exists and at times wars with the new. The solution is in chapter 8, "set your minds on the Spirit, life---or set your minds on the flesh, death." Absolute free will, before and after salvation.
    "So then, brethren, we are under OBLIGATION, not to the flesh to live according to the flesh… but (to live) by the Spirit putting to death the deeds of the flesh; for all who ARE BEING LED by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God…" (Rm8:12-14) We choose to follow the Spirit, as He leads us to put to death our flesh… Perfect free will, all the way…


    Me.
    Read it again please. Here is an excerpt.

    15I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.C For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing.

    Limitless free will? I do not think so. Sometimes we do what we really don’t want to. Sometimes we react without thinking. Ben’s position is void of reality. BUT that is not an argument against me. I believe in free will. Before and after salvation for those who get saved then I agree here with Ben… “We choose to follow the Spirit, as He leads us to put to death our flesh…”

    That is what true believers do even if we do stumble occasionally. We willfully follow Jesus and willfully are led by the Spirit. We DO choose to do that, that is why OSAS.

    Ben continues.
    How is it that the sending of Jesus was a demonstration of God's love for them when He knew they would reject Jesus?

    Already answered that. God is perfectly just. Each person has the same opportunity, Jesus died for ALL. "He who BELIEVES is not judged, but he who DOES NOT BELIEVE is condemned already". Jn3:18 Perfect free will…


    Me.
    But I already rebutted that half answer. God already KNEW that when He sent Jesus that MANY WOULD NOT BELIEVE.
    His use of verse 18 is out of context and misapplied. here it is in the Greek order: The [one] believing in Him is not judged, the [one] not believing is already judged because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    Now let us look at this properly. Before Ben got saved did he believe? No. So was he ALREADY judged? Yes. When the gospel came and Ben was convicted and was saved did his condemnation stop? Yes. All men are sinners and have ALREADY been judged and those who God saves are no longer under condemnation because they have believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    Could Ben’s interpretation be correct? No, because verse 17 [the previous verse], discounts it for it says specifically that God did NOT send Jesus into the world to condemn. So therefore vs.18 CANNOT mean that not believing condemns, but that they were already condemned and by not believing they stay condemned.

    Ben’s next example.
    "I have set before you life-and-prosperity, and death-and-adversity; I command you to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, that the Lord your God may bless you in the land where you are entering. But if your heart turns away and you will not obey, but are drawn away to worship other gods and serve them, then I declare to you today that you shall surely perish. I call Heaven and Earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. SO CHOOSE LIFE in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days." Deut30 This is God's presentation, His approach. To be perfectly just, He must allow perfect free will. they are without excuse…


    This is the OLD COVENANT Ben is quoting here. How does one get saved and keep saved according to these verses? By ALWAYS OBEYING and NEVER SINNING. This is why ALL men are ALREADY CONDEMNED and ALREADY without EXCUSE before God [for all have come short]. They have no need for further condemnation for lack of believing in something they think foolish. [1 Cor. 1 18For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19]

    Ben.
    But earlier Ben said: No. The Jews did not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not received Him. Because Peter had received JESUS as his LORD and SAVIOR, Peter believed He was the Messiah. It's not a "catch-22", it's a "receive-Him, or NOT".

    That is why I asked him. His response is to say they all mean the same thing. That makes his earlier statements nonsense. If believing in Him and receiving Him are the same thing then why does Ben use the word 'because'? [see above]. And if believing and receiving are the same thing, then why does Ben say because Peter received Jesus as His Lord and Savior he believed on Him? Why did he do it I ask and Ben says because he did it. Like I said, circular.
    Believing in Jesus, and receiving Him, is the same thing.
    Believing He was the Messiah, is different. Peter believed-in-Jesus/RECEIVED-Him, so Peter also believed He was the Messiah. The Pharisees did not believe-in-Him/receive-Him. So they did not accept His kingship.

    Me.
    Word games Ben. You are fooling yourself and you have no Scripture to back you up.

    First, you still aren’t answering the basic question, “Why do some believe and others do not?”

    Second, you are simply making assertions not based in the Word but simply to support your dogma. How did Peter know He was the Messiah? How did Peter know he was the Son of God? The Father revealed it to Peter. What did others think of Jesus? They thought he was John the Baptist, or Elijah, or one of the prophets. That is what the Word says. The Word also specifically refutes you when you said the Pharisees knew who He was. [1 Cor 2 6We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. ]

    Ben,
    So that leaves my question unanswered. Why do people choose to believe on Jesus [and become one of the elect] and others do not? No Arminianist has given any reasonable answer to that question.

    It's called, "Free Will". Some men choose to love God, some prefer sin. "I shall take their hearts-of-stone and give them hearts-of-flesh, so that they may walk in My statutes and keep My commandments. Then they will be My people and I will be their God. BUT those whose hearts go after detestable things and abominations, I shall bring their conduct down upon their heads!" Ez11:19-21 Free will from the start to the finish. Some love God, some love sin…


    Me.
    That’s a good scripture Ben….

    FOR ME!!!

    In this Scripture we see why some men stop loving sin. “I shall take their hearts-of-stone and give them hearts-of-flesh, so that they may walk in My statutes and keep My commandments. Then they will be My people and I will be their God.” Why do they stop loving sin? Because their hearts have been changed from stone to flesh. Read a parallel passage in Ezek 19 and you will see that God gives us a new heart and a new spirit and we will walk in His ways.

    That both of these two types of people were lovers of sin is made evident by the words: “I shall take their hearts-of-stone and give them hearts-of-flesh, so that they may walk in My statutes and keep My commandments.” If they were already not lovers of sin God would not have needed to take away their hearts of stone and supply them with the proper hearts. Why does He take the stony heart and give the new heart? “so that they may walk in My statutes and keep My commandments.“

    And why do the others perish [in that God will bring their conduct down around their heads, the wages of sin is death]? They perish because God didn’t take away their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Those for whom God DID take away their stone hearts were those He loves; the rest He leaves to die in their sins.
    Good verse Ben study it and come on over to my side. (-:

    Ben
    God's truth is not revealed to all men, which is plain by 1 Cor 1:18 "For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God." If they knew it as truth, it wouldn't be foolishness to them. See 1st Cor. 1:21, "For seeing that in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom knew not God, it was God's good pleasure through the foolishness of the preaching to save them that believe."

    You have answered your own question. For those who believe/receive-Jesus, the Spirit reveals truths. Exactly as in Jn6, the Spirit revealed Jesus' kingship because he had believed-in/received Jesus. It's not very complicated…
    1Cor1:24 says, "to those who are THE called"---it is not a stretch to understand it as meaning, "the saved"; consider Rm8:29-30, He "foreknew, predestined-Christlikeness, called, justified, glorified"… It simply does not say that ALL-who-are-called-WILL-be-saved. It can easily mirror "The-called", as in "the-elect", as in "THEY-WHO-BELIEVE/RECEIVED (Jesus)"…


    me
    Oops Ben, if He foreknew them as being saved and therefore predestined them and then called them, how could they not all be saved? Otherwise God’s foreknowledge was in error. The Arminianist doctrine you posted and originally agreed to said that God predestined those He saw in His foreknowledge would get saved. But NOW you say maybe that they ALL weren’t saved. Does God make mistakes like that?

    Another good verse for me, we make a good OSAS team! (-:

    Ben.
    To repeat, Calvinism and free will are not incompatible.

    Since God knows in advance who will choose Him, only those He already knows will choose Him will in fact choose Him. Since according to God's foreknowledge these elect must choose God they really have no other choice but to choose God. Likewise everyone else CANNOT chose God because God didn't foresee them choosing Him, so they are locked out. They cannot choose God.

    What's the definition of "straw man"? Either we have free will in our choice or not. Merely knowing they WILL choose Him does not CAUSE them to choose Him. BECAUSE He is just, then if they perish, the CAUSE must be their OWN…


    Me.
    Well Ben we agree 100% here. I am not arguing against free will. The straw man argument means you erect an argument of my position that really isn't my position in order to tear it down [easily like a straw man who can’t fight back]. Since Calvinism and me personally believe in free will, your attacks in that area are without justification.

    But you miss the point of my words. IF God foresees them [I speak as if I was an Arminianist here], accepting Jesus, [and therefore ‘elects’ them] then they have to accept Jesus and no one else can. It has nothing to do with free will, as you pointed out, but everything to do with God’s foreknowledge and why He sends Jesus. Since he knows that only the elect of their own free will accept and believe in Jesus, then only the elect WILL believe in Jesus and no one else. So when He sends Jesus it isn’t [and can’t be] out of love for all the rest since He knows ONLY the elect will benefit. Therefore He doesn’t love everybody as shown by the sending of Jesus because He knows ONLY the Elect will benefit and the rest will freely fail to believe and perish.

    For it to be an act of love for everybody, as in God’s act of love for them, GOD[the one doing the loving] can’t pre-know that most will die and go to hell. Since he does know that then it is not LOVING of God towards the nonelect to send Jesus. Hence Jesus is only sent to save the elect. Hence God only loves the elect.

    Ben.
    In summary, it is God who chooses to save whom He loves, and He saves them without violating their free wills. The rest are condemned for their willful sins and think the gospel foolish.

    It is God who chooses to save whoever believes . Rm10:13


    Mike.
    True, you are right. God saves who He loves through their belief. You aren’t contradicting me.
     
  10. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

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    Dear Ben,

    you said I have been slow to respond, because my heart has been burdened.

    "Now the fruits of the flesh are …disputes, factions, dissensions…" (Gal5:19-20)
    "Pursue righteousness, faith. Love, peace with those that call on the Lord out of a pure heart, but foolish and undisciplined questionings (arguments) refuse, knowing that they beget contentions." 2Tim2:22-23

    And yet, "earnestly contend for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints". Jd3
    "We are destroying arguments and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ…" (2Cor10:5)

    It is my prayer that I have NOT sinned, that I have NOT engaged in contentions and foolish arguments, but that I have "in all things shown myself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, that they …may have nothing bad to say about me." Titus2:7-8


    me.
    There are other ways to sin than be found in a contentios or foolish argument.

    you
    NOR do I wish to present myself as "Mr. SUPER-PIOUS", from some elevated plane, maybe a "special line-to-God"---I am not; just a man, who loves God with every fiber of his being, who posts on message boards with the intention of lifting his brothers and sisters, building in the faith, increasing fellowship, teaching and being taught. If I have fallen short, or offended anyone (esp Mike), then I formally, and humbly ask forgiveness.


    mike
    I do forgive you Ben and I didn't hold it against you. What was done simply hindered our communications and [possibly] mislead what others might think. I appreciate the sentiments you state here and I agrre likewise.

    ben
    I believe discussions should have a goal. Does this one still? Has all that could be said, already been said? Can we come to agreement? Or shall we respect each others' differences?


    ActuallyBen there is a lot more to say and to reason out between us as I hope my questions to you and my answers have shown. But I am biased towards my beliefs
    [no joke (-:]
    so I can only step out in faith here and hope and believe that the truth will win out and that God will be glorified in whatever we resolve and finish or leave unfinished and unresolved.

    In Him,
    mike
     
  11. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

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    I don't think predestination and free will are at odds at all.

    I think that the call goes out to all humans to be saved. God desires that ("For God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to everlasting life"), and gives every man the opportunity. Christ died on the cross once and for all people. However, it's not automatic. People have to receive the salvation. Some people choose not to. That's where free will comes in.
     
  12. Caedmon

    Caedmon kawaii Supporter

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    S2SNM, I'm sorry, but what you just said totally negates predestination. You might think it doesn't, because you're using an alternative definition, but it does.

    The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. - II Peter 3:9, NASB

    Did you read this verse in context? Start reading at the 3rd verse. What is it talking about here? It's discussing the coming of mockers and jeerers, that scoff at "God's Promise" to take care of His people. He's not being lazy with His people as the scoffers would have it, but rather bearing out the proper time to reveal the salvation that He established before the foundations of the earth were laid. The passage is written to Christians, for Christians; the message is written under the presupposition that its receivers are Christians, as are many, many other passages in the NT. The "all" in this passage refers to the Elect, all of which will eventually be regenerated by God. He is patient with the Elect, because he knows they will be ultimately be saved, that they will eventually begin their journey of sanctification, persevering to the end, because the purpose he initiated in them will come to fruition. His words will return to His mouth fruitful; He will regenerate and sanctify all of His chosen people. And that, my friend, is the praiseworthy truth that is God's Sovereignty. We have such a glorious promise! :clap: :bow:
     
  13. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

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    Dear All,

    I agree with humble joe.

    And slave2sinnomore is right when he says that predestination and free will are not incompatible.

    But slavenomore has some problems with his 'call' theory that the callgoes out to all men.

    Either he is talking about the gospel 'call' or he is talking about a general call through natural revelation and through individual consciences.

    If he is speaking about the gospel call, then he is saying everyone who ever lived heard it and hears it. That is obviously false. Those who hear it must have someone to preach it to them. And there have been hundreds of millions who have never heard.

    If he is not talking about the 'call' of the gospel, he must be speaking of another call. But no other call can save.

    Now God, through His foreknowledge knew and knows all that. So He knew when He sent Christ to the cross that millions would never be able to do as slave2sinnomore envisages them doing, have a chance to accept Jesus. Therefore the cross was never meant for them, and hence God's love as demonstrated by the cross is not for them either.

    Whatcha say to those things, slave2sinnomore?
     
  14. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

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    I say this. That God is not willing that any should perish, and calls all men unto himself. Yes, you are right that some will never hear the name Jesus, or the gospel, but Paul tells us that everyone receives the truth in some measure:

    Romans 1:20
    20For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,
    The Holy Bible, New King James Version, (Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, Inc.) 1982.

    Romans 2:14-16
    for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them) in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel.
    The Holy Bible, New King James Version, (Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, Inc.) 1982.

    So, these people, who have never heard the Gospel, are still being called, and have been given the truth, and will be judged by God in his mercy and justice. We don't know what he will take into account, but these verses tell us that they are given an opportunity. That is what I call an opportunity.
     
  15. Caedmon

    Caedmon kawaii Supporter

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    S2SNM,
    By quoting those verses and giving them the interpretation that you have given, you are assuming that these men that do not hear the Gospel are judged by their works. Is there not one God, one Christ, one Sacrifice, one Sovereignty, and one Salvation? I pose this question: If THESE men are judged by their works, then what can we say of ourselves, as Christians? Would we not have the same God judging us both, Him having the pleasure of judging us with any method that He desired according to your interpretation? This comes dangerously close to encroaching on your OSAS doctrine.
     
  16. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

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    Where did I say that they are judged by their works? Look again; you won't see that. In fact, I said that "We don't know what he will take into account". And I don't.

    I do know that Christ is the only way, and that "no man comes to the Father" but by him. So, for any man to enter Heaven, he must come through Jesus. How does the person who never heard figure into all this? I do not know how the people who have never heard the name "Jesus" will be judged. But I know that God is God and he will take care of it, and that the verses I posted (Rom 1:20 and Rom 2:14-16) do seem to address this issue.

    But for one to believe that God purposefully created people for destruction, and that he desires certain people to go to hell goes directly against the following verse:

    I Timothy 2:4
    "Who desires all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth".
     
  17. Caedmon

    Caedmon kawaii Supporter

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    If they are not judged by their works, then by what? There is only one thing outside of works... GOD'S SOVEREIGNTY. ;)

    Do you truly believe that God wills that every single person should be saved? If God wanted everyone to be saved, it would happen:

    So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. - Isaiah 55:11, NASB

    And if there is no such thing as the Reprobate, how do you explain this?:

    The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, even the wicked for the day of evil. - Proverbs 16:4, NASB

    What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? - Romans 9:22, NASB
     
  18. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

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    Exactly...you'll get no argument from me there. God is sovereign and will judge these people according to his sovereignity. Paert of his sovereign nature is his justice and mercy. It all works together. Please remember that.

    humblejoe said:
    Do you truly believe that God wills that every single person should be saved? If God wanted everyone to be saved, it would happen:

    So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. - Isaiah 55:11, NASB


    S2SNM says:
    To be honest with you, I don't know what to say about that verse right now. I don't think it means that every single thing that happens is God's will.

    Is the rape of a child God's will? Is an old woman being beaten by burglers God's will? No no no.

    You say that if God wants a person to be saved, he will be. That is because you don't seem to believe in free will. I believe in free will and think that it is everyone's choice.

    Again, the verse that no one can get around with all the explaining in the world is the following verse, which tells us in no uncertain terms what God's will is for everyone:

    I Timothy 2:4
    "Who desires all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth".

    There is absolutely nothing that any man can say about this verse to explain it away.
     
  19. Caedmon

    Caedmon kawaii Supporter

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    Was Jesus dying a humiliating and horrendously painful death God's will? :confused:
     
  20. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

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    yes, it was. It was God's plan to rescue humankind from hell. because of His love for the Father and for us, Christ agreed to fulfill that plan. Christ went willingly. He wasn't dragged into it kicking and screaming. He could have said "no thanks" to the Father at any time.

    But can you sit there and tell me that it is ever the will of God for a child to be raped? No. Evil men have free will and break the law and do horrible things.
     
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