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-David
Member



Joined: 2004/1/9
Posts: 27


 Re:

Ron,

I want to take the time here to try and maybe explain the problem I think we are having. I do not hold to the concept of Christians having a 100% free will which operates apart from any influence of God when coming to salvation. You do hold to the free will of man playing a role in coming to salvation correct? I'm asking this because I am still uncertain as to what your view on it is.

In any case, you're asking me to defend a view I do not hold to and I tried to explain my understanding of how those who do hold to the free will concept defend it. I did this while I myself do not hold to hit. Below is exactly what I do hold to, and I explain this ONLY to clear up any misconception(s) you may have regarding my belief in regards to the will of man.

I believe man does have a process that we refer to as the "will" I do not believe the will is a separate entity individually located in a specific location within man (body or soul), I believe what we refer to as the "will" is the end result of our actions, desires, choices, etc. We make those "decisions" based upon the sinful reasoning of our heart and mind. The heart and mind of man is encased in sin and is therefore sinful, the end result of anything coming from our heart and mind is also tainted with sin. We are not able to make a single righteous choice apart from God. If there is any good to be spoken of in man then it is the working of God and not man himself.

On predestination, I believe that God before the foundations of the earth elects unto salvation according to His own good pleasure. I do not believe man contributes anything of merit to his own salvation. I do not believe man studies the options and then "rings Gods doorbell". It is Christ who stands at the door of the heart and knocks, man does not knock on Gods heart and ask to come in. I believe that apart from the work of God man would be justly, rightly and eternally condemned to hell and separation from Him and all that is good.

I do not believe God predestines anyone to hell (double predestination)... I believe man is rightly condemned to hell already and that is apart from God. It is only the work of God that saves any man. If God did not work in anyone then none would be saved. God elects those He elects, God does according to His own good pleasure. God does not have to work evil or sin into the life of any man in order to make that man condemned to hell. Man is already condemned apart from God. Salvation is the reaching down of God, salvation is not the reaching up of man.

I believe it is not the intent of God that we be able to explain everything God does, why He does it, when He does it, nor even where He does it. I believe in the "mystery" of God in so far as how He works in the lives of finite men who are not able to grasp all an infinite God does. God is God, man is man. God is God, man is not. We as Christians must absolutely be willing and content to accept that which seems impossible or unexplainable when it comes to God. If we refuse to accept that which we can not comprehend or grasp then we are refusing faith. To demand to posses all the answers is to say with Satan:

Is 14:14 'I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.'



-David

 2004/1/19 11:09Profile
philologos
Member



Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

almondBranch wrote Don't know how much of this makes sense, I am putting it together as I go along, haven't got the willpower to sit down and think it through properly.

It makes sense to me, but then again that might not be much comfort for you. ;-)


_________________
Ron Bailey

 2004/1/19 11:10Profile
-David
Member



Joined: 2004/1/9
Posts: 27


 Re:

Clutch Said:
"So, I'd just like to point out at this CRITICAL juncture; that just as there is no "schlumph" in the Bible; neither is there an "I" in Supralapsayreeun. "


As far as supralapsarianism and infralapsarianism I would be more inclined to infralapsarianism.


-David

 2004/1/19 11:35Profile
philologos
Member



Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

David
Thanks for your note and your patience. Let me try to work through your posting.

David wrote I want to take the time here to try and maybe explain the problem I think we are having. I do not hold to the concept of Christians having a 100% free will which operates apart from any influence of God when coming to salvation. You do hold to the free will of man playing a role in coming to salvation correct? I'm asking this because I am still uncertain as to what your view on it is.

To put it bluntly, which I can now we have had this conversation, I don't believe I have this thing called a will. I hold that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Gabriel told Mary that "no word from God is without power". When God speaks we can. When He doesn't speak, we can't. So God speaks to me, not my anything/schlumpf, just to me, and I can because the enabling is in the word which I hear. God has to initiate this whole thing. If the opposite to a Calvinist is one who thinks they can do anything when they want to, I'm not one of those either.

_______________________________________________________

David wrote In any case, you're asking me to defend a view I do not hold to and I tried to explain my understanding of how those who do hold to the free will concept defend it. I did this while I myself do not hold to hit. Below is exactly what I do hold to, and I explain this ONLY to clear up any misconception(s) you may have regarding my belief in regards to the will of man.

OK thanks for trying. I've been in these situations myself. It's like being a football, owned by neither side and kicked by both. Thanks again.
___________________________________________________

David wrote I believe man does have a process that we refer to as the "will" I do not believe the will is a separate entity individually located in a specific location within man (body or soul), I believe what we refer to as the "will" is the end result of our actions, desires, choices, etc. We make those "decisions" based upon the sinful reasoning of our heart and mind. The heart and mind of man is encased in sin and is therefore sinful, the end result of anything coming from our heart and mind is also tainted with sin. We are not able to make a single righteous choice apart from God. If there is any good to be spoken of in man then it is the working of God and not man himself.

I don't call that process 'the will' I call it choice and I can only make a choice when I am offered one. But God's offer, when I hear it, must always be within my capacity to choose. Otherwise I don't know what 'Choose ye this day' can mean. I see from Acts 17 that God 'commands all men everywhere to repent'. Potentially that word can come to every man and when it does they can choose aright. "all things come of thee" combined with "thou triest the heart".

____________________________________________________
David wrote On predestination, I believe that God before the foundations of the earth elects unto salvation according to His own good pleasure. I do not believe man contributes anything of merit to his own salvation. I do not believe man studies the options and then "rings Gods doorbell". It is Christ who stands at the door of the heart and knocks, man does not knock on Gods heart and ask to come in. I believe that apart from the work of God man would be justly, rightly and eternally condemned to hell and separation from Him and all that is good.

I do not believe God predestines anyone to hell (double predestination)... I believe man is rightly condemned to hell already and that is apart from God. It is only the work of God that saves any man. If God did not work in anyone then none would be saved. God elects those He elects, God does according to His own good pleasure. God does not have to work evil or sin into the life of any man in order to make that man condemned to hell. Man is already condemned apart from God. Salvation is the reaching down of God, salvation is not the reaching up of man.

This would be the point at which we take different paths. I have a strong conviction that election is not to 'salvation' but to service. Of course, we cannot serve Him unless He saves us but I think the focus is what He purposes to do in us. I am predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son. I think Romans 9 may not have personal salvation in focus at all, but God's service. In this Pharaoh was offered the opportunity to cooperate. He 'chose' not to. God then strengthened his heart to carry through his refusal so God's glory would be seen. However, at no point does it say that Pharaoh went to hell. He may have done, I have no idea, my point is it is not Pharaoh's eternal wellbeing but the outworking of God's purpose which is in focus. I note that "Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated" was not written until 1200 years after Jacob had been buried. The reference is not to an individual but to the people of Jacob, who were predestined to "shew forth the praises of God". Esau, the individual, sought for repentance with tears but found it not. But what did Esau want? He wanted his destiny back. Esau's tears were not for lost salvation, that is not the focus.
_______________________________________________________

David wrote I believe it is not the intent of God that we be able to explain everything God does, why He does it, when He does it, nor even where He does it. I believe in the "mystery" of God in so far as how He works in the lives of finite men who are not able to grasp all an infinite God does. God is God, man is man. God is God, man is not. We as Christians must absolutely be willing and content to accept that which seems impossible or unexplainable when it comes to God. If we refuse to accept that which we can not comprehend or grasp then we are refusing faith. To demand to posses all the answers is to say with Satan:

Is 14:14 'I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.'


Amen to all that, although I don't believe Satan had a will either. ;-)


_________________
Ron Bailey

 2004/1/19 11:38Profile
Clutch
Member



Joined: 2003/11/10
Posts: 202
Oak Ridge, Tennessee

 Re:

Hi Ron,
ZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! snort , cough.
Clutch :-P


_________________
Howard McNeill

 2004/1/20 3:46Profile
Chosen7Stone
Member



Joined: 2003/7/21
Posts: 268
FL, USA

 Re: Foreknowledge or Predetermination

Ron (philologos) quoted Christopher Wordsworth as saying,

Quote:
"God's foreknowledge sees everything and forces nothing. It leaves the liberty of the human will untouched. Whatever is foretold by God will be done by man; but nothing will be done by man because it is foretold by God."

I completely agree. I believe when it comes to our salvation, God choses who's His and who's not. But when it comes to other things...God knows what we're going to do, but doesn't force us into it.
For example.
God: "Mary, you can either have a bologna and cheese sandwich, or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich." (But He already knows my choice.)
Me: I pick the PBJ. Yum.
God didn't force me into the PBJ, but He knew I'd choose it. But then again, a PBJ isn't vital to salvation.


_________________
Mary M.

 2004/1/20 6:22Profile
philologos
Member



Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

Clutch wrote:
Hi Ron,
ZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZ! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! snort , cough.
Clutch

tread softly, you're treading on his dreams...


_________________
Ron Bailey

 2004/1/20 10:00Profile
-David
Member



Joined: 2004/1/9
Posts: 27


 Re:

philologos said:
"tread softly, you're treading on his dreams..."


Is this in reference to my views? As to say I have unfounded or abstract "dreams" in regards to my understanding?

 2004/1/20 12:33Profile
-David
Member



Joined: 2004/1/9
Posts: 27


 Re:

Ron,

I find the problem here to be the refusal to grasp the common definition of a single word "will" and apply it to man. You can argue and say there is no such thing in the Bible as the "will" yet you argue to defend the very concept of something you claim is not taught or defined within the Bible. You've said "I cannot find the "will" in the Bible" yet you believe we somehow can make free choices. THAT is the will, the ability to make a choice. Getting into defining the ability of the "will" to make a righteous choice apart from God is an entirely different subject. Man does have a will in that he on a daily basis makes choices and realizes desires.

It just seems ludicrous to me personally to say that man has no will since it is not located within a isolated specific region of man separate from mind, and emotion. The will is the product OF the mind and emotions. My original argument was not in defense of the existence of the will, it was an argument in defense of the sinfulness of the will. Mans will is in total depravity apart from God. If man on his own accord can sin less and less every day due to some righteousness within himself then it is basic logic to reason that eventually within that mans life he will become sinless and therefore will not be in need of a Savior.

The reason this argument cannot ever go anywhere is because you are refusing the definition of something simply because that definition is not defining a specific function of an individual organ within man. If you were to understand Christianity with the presupposition that there is no "human will" you'd have a very difficult time understanding anything about the need of redemption. To degrade my understanding of what the Bible teaches about the will of man by referring to it as a "dream" is not just insulting, it is totally uncalled for since I have behaved in what I would consider to be a polite and friendly manner while discussing this subject. I have not degraded anything you said or held to. My stance on this issue was that I do believe there is clear teaching within the Bible with regards to human will, I believe man sinned and when he sinned it created total depravity, I believe there is no hope for redemption of man apart from the work(s) of Christ and Him crucified.

Respectfully,
-David



Main Entry: 1will
Pronunciation: w&l, (&)l, &l, 'wil
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): past would /w&d, (&)d, 'wud/; present singular & plural will
Etymology: Middle English (1st & 3d sing. present indic.), from Old English wille (infinitive wyllan); akin to Old High German wili (3d singular present indicative) wills, Latin velle to wish, will
Date: before 12th century
transitive senses : DESIRE, WISH
verbal auxiliary
1 -- used to express desire, choice, willingness, consent, or in negative constructions refusal
2 -- used to express frequent, customary, or habitual action or natural tendency or disposition
3 -- used to express futurity
4 -- used to express capability or sufficiency
5 -- used to express probability and often equivalent to the simple verb
6 a -- used to express determination, insistence, persistence, or willfulness b -- used to express inevitability
7 -- used to express a command, exhortation, or injunction
intransitive senses : to have a wish or desire
usage see SHALL
- if you will : if you wish to call it that

 2004/1/20 13:06Profile
Clutch
Member



Joined: 2003/11/10
Posts: 202
Oak Ridge, Tennessee

 Re:

David,
Relax man. Ron was not refering to anything you posted, but to mine. :-D He was making reference to our ongoing banter back and forth about the ALLEGED dispraity in our ages.As in YOUNG men will see visions, and OLD men shall dream dreams. :-D
I personally saw no humor at all in what he so insiduously implied, and I greatly appreciate your rebuttal. :-D :-D
So, you have my blessing to continue educating the young upstart Ron, in the lessons pretaining to respecting his elders. :-D
Thanks Bro. David,for jumping in for my defense, but I can take it from here. 8-) :-D
Clutch :-P


_________________
Howard McNeill

 2004/1/20 13:28Profile





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