God is Unavoidably in the Mix

Carbon

Well-known member
I haven't learned how this new software works, as far as breaking up quotes. Anyway...
Ha, yes, it took me a little to figure it out also. I was used to the old board.
We will need to unpack the meaning of spiritually dead. Is that more than being spiritually disunited from God?
Whats your understanding?
So then, do you take John 3:3 to mean that the man must see the kingdom first before he can be converted?
No. It’s just as Jesus said, unless one is born again they cannot see the kingdom of God.
So, the Spirit regenerates, and the man who is regenerate is in the kingdom. When ones eyes are open, has a new heart, only then can he freely seek Christ and confess the belief that is in his heart, as Romans 10 teaches.
I think that is an assumption. Go back to John 1. "As many as received Him, to them He gave the power to become the sons of God..."
Nope, no assumption. I’m completely convinced of this truth that I posted above.
 
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Theo1689

Well-known member
Ha, yes, it took me a little to figure it out also. I was used to the old board.

It actually seems a little easier than the old board.
In one viewing mode (which I assume is the default view) all you have to do is put your cursor in the middle of a quote bubble, and hit return, and it closes that bubble and lets you respond to it, and puts the remaining unquoted text in a new bubble underneath.

Alternatively, if you go to the top right menu where you see icons "undo" and a vertical ellipsis, if you click on the ellipsis, more options show up. The square brackets icon "[ ]" can be clicked, and you can then see the HTML codes for "quote", etc.
 

Carbon

Well-known member
It actually seems a little easier than the old board.
In one viewing mode (which I assume is the default view) all you have to do is put your cursor in the middle of a quote bubble, and hit return, and it closes that bubble and lets you respond to it, and puts the remaining unquoted text in a new bubble underneath.

Alternatively, if you go to the top right menu where you see icons "undo" and a vertical ellipsis, if you click on the ellipsis, more options show up. The square brackets icon "[ ]" can be clicked, and you can then see the HTML codes for "quote", etc.
Thanks. There still is a lot of those codes I need to learn. Thankfully I got the basics
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Thanks. There still is a lot of those codes I need to learn. Thankfully I got the basics

You have to be very careful.
Sometimes I will quote a poster, and correct misspellings with "[ ]".
Once I pluralized a verb with "[s ]" (without the space), forgetting that's the code for "strikethrough" (which it did all the way to the end of my post).
Or I changed the pronoun to "[I ]" (without the space), only to find the rest of my post was converted to italics.

<sigh>
 

Carbon

Well-known member
It's not violating man's free will to bring or permit influences to the man that God knows will sway him this way or that.
How would He not be violating mans free will? Man does not seek God, has no desire for God and is a God hater. Lost sinners in action express their wills daily and it’s not for the True God.
So influencing God hating sinners to do something against their will is violating their free will. They want nothing to do with God, so swaying them one way or another to come to Him would be violating their free will.
Man is free to do as he pleases, but he does not control his inclinations or the influences that come his way. Only God controls that.
You put to much faith in mans ability, that’s my take on your system.
 

TibiasDad

Well-known member
The question of what any particular man would do apart from God’s influence is irrelevant, since God’s influence is unavoidable. There is no way for God in His foreknowledge to compare different men to see which will believe and which will reject as a difference merely between the men. Rather, since God’s interactions and influence have affected all men to some infinitely variable degree, then the variable is not merely the men but the extent of God’s influence.

The Arminian view sounds reasonable at first: God foresees that Jim will believe and that John will not, so God plans on Jim believing and plans on John not believing. But if the difference in God’s own influences are making the difference between Jim and John, then that view falls into unconditional election, since it ends up being God who has made the real difference.

Since there is no man who has not in some way been affected by God’s interaction with men, then theire is no way for God to foreknow of any willing-to-be-saved man who has not already been influenced by God. This would not be a problem for the Arminian view if God’s influence in every case were equal… but it is not equal. With some men, God is much more longsuffering and provides much influence (such as with an elderly man who gets saved after living his entire life under the preaching of the gospel and with the witness of many good saints. With others, God seems less patient and provides much less influence (such as the young man who dies shortly after reaching an accountable understanding, and who lives and dies in a country that has not yet heard the gospel). Also, different men need a different amount of influence in order to result in their conversion. Some hear the gospel the first time and are saved, while others have to be brought to the end of their rope before they reach out to Jesus in desperation.

With all these differences, disparities and variables, how can anyone think that God’s foreknowlege of a man’s “free will decision” to embrace Christ is all the reason that He needs to choose one man over another?

Ken Hamrick
But it is equal:

It is equal in scope that all mankind is offered the gift of eternal life!

It is equal in sufficiency because it is based on Christ completed work!

It is equal in that God has made his reality sufficiently clear that all men are without excuse before him!

It is equal in that grace is effectual to anyone who believes in Christ’s death and resurrection for sin, and that God wants all men to repent and is not desirous that any should perish.

It is equal that God need not save anyone, offer salvation to anyone, or act positively toward us in any way, yet has promise on himself that “whosoever believes in him, shall not perish, but have life everlasting.”

It is equal in that any act of God’s grace toward any particular person is, in itself, sufficient to turn a rebellious heart to repent and belief!

Yes, the opportunities to hear the gospel are contingent upon the obedience of his Jonahs to do our jobs, but this is not an inequity in God’s sufficiency or willingness or even intensity level of effort to influence.

Doug
 

Ken Hamrick

Active member
But it is equal:

It is equal in scope that all mankind is offered the gift of eternal life!
That might be equal if that were all God did. But since He does more, then the inequalities are elsewhere.
It is equal in sufficiency because it is based on Christ completed work!
Ok. Equal so far...
It is equal in that God has made his reality sufficiently clear that all men are without excuse before him!
Ok. Equal so far...
It is equal in that grace is effectual to anyone who believes in Christ’s death and resurrection for sin, and that God wants all men to repent and is not desirous that any should perish.
Ok. Equal so far...
It is equal that God need not save anyone, offer salvation to anyone, or act positively toward us in any way, yet has promise on himself that “whosoever believes in him, shall not perish, but have life everlasting.”
Ok. Equal so far...
It is equal in that any act of God’s grace toward any particular person is, in itself, sufficient to turn a rebellious heart to repent and belief!
Here, I see inequality. You say that any single act of God's grace toward any particular person is sufficient to turn a rebellious heart to repent and believe; but that would only be equal if God limited His grace to only that single act in every particular person's life. But not even you can deny that He does not, but instead, acts with great inequities of grace toward various people. Different people need different amounts of God's gracious influences to bear upon their lives. Some may come to Christ at that initial act of God's grace that you speak of... but many, many more need much more than that before they will come in faith---and not even you can deny that many who will not come without much more of God's gracious influences do in fact receive those needed influences and do come to Christ eventually. Then there's the category of those who needed much more and who received almost what they needed but not quite enough... and they perished. There's also the category of those who only needed a little more, but who did not receive even that and perished. Jesus said that the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah would have repented had they received the same gracious influences that such cities as Bethsaida had received. God knows exactly what influences would be needed to bring any man to repentant faith; and yet, He decides whether or not to save such men by bringing exactly those influences to bear that He knows will result in successful conversion. God knows and God decides. He does not "try very hard but often fail"--He knows and He decides. Even the length of our days are decided by God, in the case of those who would have repented had they had more years of life. Sometimes God is longsuffering in the case of those who eventually believe. Sometimes God is longsuffering in the case of those who eventually die as unbelievers. Sometimes God is not longsuffering, in the case of those whom He knows would have believed had they lived a little longer. Sometimes a person dies immediately after coming to an accountable understanding and willfully sinning for the first time. God is patient with some and seemingly not with others. God is abundantly gracious with some, and seemingly not with others. We know from experience that when the gospel comes to a people who were previously unreached, always God saves someone (and often many) from among them. And yet, God has not yet brought His gospel to many peoples who remain unreached.
Yes, the opportunities to hear the gospel are contingent upon the obedience of his Jonahs to do our jobs, but this is not an inequity in God’s sufficiency or willingness or even intensity level of effort to influence.

Doug
So then, you're saying that the inequities and negligence on our part, which results in many people perishing who would have been saved if not for our inequities, is not God's fault but ours? Then God has left the destiny of so many people in the hands of those whom He foreknew would not get the job done, but He preferred that those be lost rather than cause too much divine "interference?" Anyway, as I said above, there are many more inequities other than this.
 

TibiasDad

Well-known member
Here, I see inequality. You say that any single act of God's grace toward any particular person is sufficient to turn a rebellious heart to repent and believe; but that would only be equal if God limited His grace to only that single act in every particular person's life. But not even you can deny that He does not, but instead, acts with great inequities of grace toward various people. Different people need different amounts of God's gracious influences to bear upon their lives. Some may come to Christ at that initial act of God's grace that you speak of... but many, many more need much more than that before they will come in faith---and not even you can deny that many who will not come without much more of God's gracious influences do in fact receive those needed influences and do come to Christ eventually. Then there's the category of those who needed much more and who received almost what they needed but not quite enough... and they perished. There's also the category of those who only needed a little more, but who did not receive even that and perished. Jesus said that the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah would have repented had they received the same gracious influences that such cities as Bethsaida had received. God knows exactly what influences would be needed to bring any man to repentant faith; and yet, He decides whether or not to save such men by bringing exactly those influences to bear that He knows will result in successful conversion. God knows and God decides. He does not "try very hard but often fail"--He knows and He decides. Even the length of our days are decided by God, in the case of those who would have repented had they had more years of life. Sometimes God is longsuffering in the case of those who eventually believe. Sometimes God is longsuffering in the case of those who eventually die as unbelievers. Sometimes God is not longsuffering, in the case of those whom He knows would have believed had they lived a little longer. Sometimes a person dies immediately after coming to an accountable understanding and willfully sinning for the first time. God is patient with some and seemingly not with others. God is abundantly gracious with some, and seemingly not with others. We know from experience that when the gospel comes to a people who were previously unreached, always God saves someone (and often many) from among them. And yet, God has not yet brought His gospel to many peoples who remain unreached.

All I was trying to say, is that any act of grace that God uses to seek to draw man to himself is able to save if the man believes. The only inequity is that in Reformed thought God only gives belief to some, and nobody else, regardless of how intense the event becomes. If it takes one time or fifty times, it is only because God waits that long to give belief to someone!


Doug
 

TibiasDad

Well-known member
So then, you're saying that the inequities and negligence on our part, which results in many people perishing who would have been saved if not for our inequities, is not God's fault but ours? Then God has left the destiny of so many people in the hands of those whom He foreknew would not get the job done, but He preferred that those be lost rather than cause too much divine "interference?" Anyway, as I said above, there are many more inequities other than this.
Not completely, but that is one of the factors in the equation. In my view, Calvinism is the most inequitable version of things (and while I know you are a centrist, you are advocating a Calvinistic doctrine), making the very few the only ones who are elect what they are, and the rest of humanity what they are by default judgement and decree!

While I am certain there are all kinds of logical loopholes that Arminian thinkers can be accused of creating, Reformed thinking is by far the most brash and overtly inequitable formula of thought ever devised. That God can be both loving and yet impose his sovereignty in such an crushing way on the largest part of his creation is beyond the pale of reconciliation.

I make no judgement on those who hold such a position, but I cannot fathom how such a view is logical, much less an accurate description of what scripture teaches. This is only my personal perspective and opinion, and I am not casting my brothers and sisters into the fires of perdition, I just find their deduction unsatisfying and inconsistent with scripture's depiction of both God and the intent of the gospel.


Doug
 

Ken Hamrick

Active member
All I was trying to say, is that any act of grace that God uses to seek to draw man to himself is able to save if the man believes. The only inequity is that in Reformed thought God only gives belief to some, and nobody else, regardless of how intense the event becomes. If it takes one time or fifty times, it is only because God waits that long to give belief to someone!
Not completely, but that is one of the factors in the equation. In my view, Calvinism is the most inequitable version of things (and while I know you are a centrist, you are advocating a Calvinistic doctrine), making the very few the only ones who are elect what they are, and the rest of humanity what they are by default judgement and decree!

While I am certain there are all kinds of logical loopholes that Arminian thinkers can be accused of creating, Reformed thinking is by far the most brash and overtly inequitable formula of thought ever devised. That God can be both loving and yet impose his sovereignty in such an crushing way on the largest part of his creation is beyond the pale of reconciliation.

I make no judgement on those who hold such a position, but I cannot fathom how such a view is logical, much less an accurate description of what scripture teaches. This is only my personal perspective and opinion, and I am not casting my brothers and sisters into the fires of perdition, I just find their deduction unsatisfying and inconsistent with scripture's depiction of both God and the intent of the gospel.
Isn't it true that God was both loving and yet did impose His sovereignty in such a crushing way on His Son whom He loved and yet was pleased to crush? I don't advocate a Calvinist doctrine, but a biblical doctrine that Calvinists just happen to agree with. Their system is very different from mine. So, in effect, your defense here is to acknowledge the force of my critique but plead that Calvinism is worse?
 
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