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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love and means of salvation?

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Christinyou
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Joined: 2005/11/2
Posts: 3706
Ca.

 Re:

Quote:

""Well, it is the same way with every one of us. If Satan the enemy of God and our souls did not exist in the world to tempt us, we can never prove to God the sincerity of our devotion and love when we choose the resist the Devil and refuse the follow the path of sin.""

This shows the Glory of God even in a clay pot. His glory, in man, which is "Christ in you the Hope of Glory".

Colossians 1:25-29 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.

This fulfillment of the Word of God, none knew until it was revealed to the Gentiles and His saints.

I almost allowed my flesh to agree with this questioning God of; Why did you make me this way?

Until I remembered the scripture in Romans 9; Romans 9:19-21 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth He yet find fault? For who hath resisted His will? Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?

Who am I who took the Potters clay and by the breath of life and my mind will and emotions made a vessel unto destruction out of it, my will not His. Ezekiel 18:23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live? By His hand; Joh 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Joh 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
1Jo 1:2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)
1Jo 5:13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. He has by His Grace and the Life of His only Begotten Son chosen to make a vessel of Glory and Grace of it by putting His own life in it, Jesus Christ who is the express image and likeness and Oneness with the Father, put in this vessel headed for destruction and make it a vessel of Glory, Even the Glory ot God the Potter who is Now a Father to a son, This I don't understand, I should be in hell, but God in His own will chose to birth His own Son in me to make me a son of God also, There are no words to show why, all I can do is by Faith say Thank You Father for your perfect Glory and Grace that is in me, Jesus Christ The Son of God who has made me a son to His Father who is now My Father. By Him I have faith to believe.

Galatians 2:16-21 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

Words fail me, only tears of Joy.

In Christ: Phillip


_________________
Phillip

 2012/2/20 20:32Profile
pilgrim777
Member



Joined: 2011/9/30
Posts: 1211


 Re:

Wonderful little post jimp! You got it!!

The sin of the Christian is good works because we turn the grace of God back into works. That was Paul's problem with the Galatians.

Revivalist,

You jumped way ahead to a child being fed poison. First of all, you cannot liken God allowing man to exercise free choice with giving him poison. Stick with me now and you will see where I am going. But first we have to back up a bit. So first of all, why did those parents have a child? Because they wanted an expression of their love to share with and they wanted to grow their circle of fellowship. Now, if they keep their baby in a plastic bubble all his life then they will surely protect him. If they see to all of his needs and are always there to make him laugh and entertain him then he will never feel any lack. They have essentially made him his own little plastic garden of eden.

But this is not what happens is it?

Enter the Adversary, the Serpent. Yes, he is part of God's plan and design, too. Lucifer did not catch God by surprise. Did you ever wonder how Lucifer chose to be evil since there was no one to model it after? Where did Lucifer get those thoughts to rebel against God. We know where Adam and Eve got their thoughts (from Satan) but where did Satan get his thoughts? We can talk about this later. Anyway, continuiing...

God who alone has absolute free will made a choosing creature. Absolute free will means that you can do absolutely anything you want, anytime. We don't have that. If we are in prison, we cannot will ourselves out. That is what I mean by absolute free will. But we do have free choice. God gave man free choice and love demands that he give that creature the opportunity to exercise his ability to choose. But all along the way we must ask ourselves, what is God after? Well, what is a parent after, Revivalist? A parent wants to bring a child to maturity and wholeness and healthy, loving fellowship with them. Can this be done in a bubble? Oh it is fun for a while. We all protect our little babies and keep them sheltered but if we love them we will allow them to make choices as they grow up.

God is also after something. He surely does want to express His love and share it. He chooses to do this by allowing His creatures to have free choice. If you were looking for a race of people to fellowship with for all eternity and desiring that a rebellion would never again take place in heaven, how would you go about bringing these sons and daughters to maturity (mutual trust)? How would you go about bringing sons and daughters to a place of complete trust in you?

Do you know how God goes about bring many sons to glory?

Through pain and suffering (and Christ in us). And dare I say, by allowing evil into our lives.

God doesn’t do the evil, He can only do good (James 1:13). The devil is the doer of evil, not God. However, the scripture says that, “God created evil” (Isa. 45:7). and to agree with the scriptures, we must say, “Amen.” Yet in what sense did He create evil? God created freedom with the possibility of His creatures going the evil way of unbelief, so in an indirect since, He created evil by creating us free beings. So now let us see how God uses the devil’s misused freedom, which is evil, for His higher eternal purposes, yet still reins sovereign over His creation—(Daniel 2:19-22; 4:32):

This is Joseph’s statement of faith after being treated unfairly by his brothers.

Genesis 50:20 “As for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”

God chastises His disobedient sons by using the Assyrian who were Israel’s enemy, yet they are the rod of God’s anger.

Isaiah 10:5 “O, Assyria, the rod of my anger, the staff of my fury! And the staff in their hand is my indignation.”

God will take us through deep valleys to cause us to discover great treasures.

Isaiah 45:3 “I will give you the treasures of darkness and the hidden riches in secret places, that you may know that it is I, The Lord ,the God of Israel, who call you by your name.”

God created free beings with the possibility of going the evil way of unbelief.

Isaiah 45:6-7 “That men may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the Lord, and there is none other. I form the light and create darkness, I make peace, and create evil, I am the Lord, who do all these things.”

The greatest evil in all history was when Satan put Jesus on the Cross, yet God meant it for our greatest good.

Isaiah 53:10-11 “Yet it was the will of the Lord to bruise him; he has put him to grief; when he makes himself an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring, he shall prolong his days; the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand; he shall see the fruit of the travail of his soul and be satisfied; by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous; and he shall bear their iniquities.”

Nothing can be against us, everything is created for our greatest good.

Isaiah 54:16 “Behold, I have created the smith who blows the fire of coals, and produces a weapon for its purpose. I have also created the ravager to destroy;”

God meant the consequences of the fall to drive us to childlike trust.

Mercy sent Satan to Job for Job to know that he was only complete in God, and not in himself.

Job 2:3 “And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still hold hast his integrity, although you moved me against him, to destroy him without a cause.”

Job, himself never saw his evil circumstances coming from Satan, but from God. We see through evil to God only. Kind of like what you are doing now and what we all are doing or have done.

Job 2:10 “But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.”

Can the creation be wiser than God, and does God not control all things.

Job 12:16 “With him are strength and wisdom; the deceived and the deceiver are His.”

Job keep his eyes on God alone, even in the negative.

Job 16:12 “I was at ease, and He broke me asunder; He seized me by the neck and dashed me to pieces; He set me up as his target.”

Even Jobs family said that God was responsible for all that happened to Job.

Job 42:11 “Then came to him all his brothers and sisters and all who had known him before, and ate bread with him in his house; and they showed him sympathy and comforted him for all the evil that the Lord had brought upon him; and each of them gave him a piece of money and a ring of gold.”

God chastens whom He loves.

Deuteronomy 8:5 “Know then in your heart that, as a man disciplines his son, the Lord your God disciplines you.”

Psalms 66:11 “Thou didst bring us into the net; thou didst lay affliction on our loins;”

Psalms 102:9 “For I eat ashes like bread, and mingle tears with my drink, because of thy indignation and anger; for thou hast taken me up and thrown me away.”

Jeremiah 42:10 “If you will remain in this land, then I will build you up and not pull you down; I will plant you; and not pluck you up; for I repent of the evil which I did to you.”

Seeing God Only

Lamentations 3:1-18 “I am the man who has seen affliction under the rod of His wrath; He has driven and brought me into darkness without any light; surely against me He turns his hand again and again the whole day long. He has made my flesh and my skin waste away, and broken my bones; he has besieged and enveloped me with bitterness and tribulation; He had made me dwell in darkness like the dead of long heavy chains on me; though I call an cry for help, He shuts out my prayer; He has blocked my ways with hewn stones, he has made my paths crooked. He is to me like a bear lying in wait, like a lion in hiding; he led me off my way and tore me to pieces; He has made me desolate; He bent His bow and set me as a mark for his arrow. He drove into my heart the arrows of his quiver; I have become the laughingstock of all peoples, the burden of their songs all day long. He has filled me with bitterness, He has made me drunken with wormwood. He has also broken my teeth with gravel stones, He has covered me with ashes. And you have removed my soul far off from peace; I have forgotten prosperity. And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the Lord.”

I Peter 4:12 “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you.”

II Samuel 12:11 “Thus says the Lord, Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house.”

Joel 2:25 “I will restore to you the years which the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and cutter, my great army, which I sent among you.”

Amos 3:6 “Is a trumpet blown in a city, and the people are not afraid? Does evil befall a city, unless the Lord has done it?”

Jesus would not give Pilate, Herod, nor the devil any power. He saw their evil work, but gave it no power. There is only one power in the universe.

John 19:7 “Then said Pilate unto him, Speak thou not unto me? Know thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?

Jesus answered, Thou could have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above.”

God’s sovereignty reigns

Acts 2:23 “Him, being delivered by determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain.”

Acts 4:26 “The Kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. For a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.”

I Peter 2:21 “For even hereunto were you called; because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow his steps.”

Romans 8:32 “He spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us ALL things?”

ALL means good, as well as evil.

Romans 8:36 “For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”

Do you see what God is up to now? Maybe just a little bit?

He is after something in each one of us. ALL OF OUR HEART.

Pilgrim

 2012/2/20 21:50Profile









 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an


Dear Revilalist, you're not the first nor will you be the last to sweat bullets wrestling with these type of questions. Some of the greatest men that ever lived, have.

I too went through this and more.

I do believe in freewill but don't believe that our GOD predestined anyone to Hell - but He does know who will 'choose' to go there - because they don't want any part in loving Him nor others.


I think the easier we keep this, the better. I know that Satan's IQ far excedes any of ours and that truth should never be forgotten. Satan is quite capable to cause us to struggle with this question until The LORD returns, if we don't just take Him at His Word.

I do not believe that man's chief end is to bring Glory to GOD. He is Self-sufficient in Glory without us.

He wanted a Bride to love and be with, for all of Eternity. That is the answer.

If one puts themself in the place of an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent GOD that 'is' Love, and wanted a Bride to love and to spend ALL of 'ETERNITY' with - what would you look for?

Even as just a man - if you wanted to love, far beyond human love, and to spend eternity with a woman as 'your' wife - looking at eternity, beginning for you and her from the view of Revelation 21 - what type of bride would meet 'your' requirements?

I've known some folks that have asked Him if they could have a taste of the full strength of His Love, but their human body caused them to cry out - "ENOUGH, I can't contain it, LORD - I'll die or something - it's FAR TOO MUCH! - and He did pull back enough for them to resume a [somewhat] normal life again. I only say 'somewhat' because they never were the same as they were before 'it' happened.

Makes one smile.


GOD BLESS you with His Love.

 2012/2/20 22:40









 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an

You have partly answered your question Revivalist.

God is not only Just but He also does everything legally so that know one can say that God is unfair.

Whether man was given free will, free choice or what have you, it was imperative that he eat of that tree.

Think about it, if Eden was a perfect sinless place where there is absolute bliss, what good would a set of laws be to us who are sinless? The law entered so that the transgression would increase. It was necessary that man should fall. Why? Because, long before man was created from the earth, there was a being that disrupted the courses of which God had ordained. Satan rebelled. How he rebelled and by what authority and source we don't know. All we know is that he rebelled and God who is Just needed a legal precident to bind Satan and cast him in a place where he would not be able to rise again.

When God handed over the keys to the earth to Adam, Satan no doubt was furious that such a low being would be granted that much power so he went to work on him through the serpent which then spoke to Eve. How Satan became the prince of the power of the air from the time that man fell is a mystery, but he was able to do obtain that right.

Having that right he was able to go freely to and fro the earth going up and down in it seeking whom he may devour. Even when God had a meeting in heaven, Satan showed up and without restriction, because he had that right.

Again, God who is Just does everything legally. God began to work on a select few and made covenants and promises to man to bring about His SEED. He spoke through the prophets His word through similitudes and shadows the plan that He would bring about to dethrone Satan LEGALLY and to put him in his place once and for all and to reconcile everything back together that was fallen down before the fall and after so that God could install His King of Kings and Lord of Lords over the whole universe. Once all the WORDS were spoken into existance through His prophets then Christ would manifest in the likeness of sinful flesh. God in His wisdom was drawing up a legal document that only He and the Angels knew about. All it needed was blood to bring it into affect. And not just any blood, it had to be from the spotless lamb of God. Once the blood was spilt, God now could bring His plan into affect that would redeem man for the "whomsoever will" and to bruise the head of Satan.

I took a stab at it.

I have often wondered too brother, but there is a lot of silence in the scripture concerning this. The best thing to do with this information is to try to piece some of it together in your mind with what scripture best supports it and leave the rest to God.

 2012/2/20 23:43
Sidewalk
Member



Joined: 2011/11/11
Posts: 706
San Diego

 Re: God's dilemma

I hope this isn't too far afield, but we have had an interesting demonstration of the difference between forgiveness and pardon. Haley Barbour is a fine Christian man, who was serving as the governor of Mississippi. As he left office, he gave pardons to some inmates he'd met and believed should be forgiven and released. This didn't go so well.

Forgiveness is personal, man to man. But pardon is governmental. The obligation of those who govern is to ensure justice. The governor may give pardons when it is safe to do so, but his personal feelings may be troubled when he must punish those he would want to release. This is exactly God's dilemma and why He must have a substitute to satisfy the demands of law. It is why He cannot prevent a man from choosing a path to Hell.

Governor Barbour's attempt to bypass the obligation resulted in at least one murder. In the same way God cannot just let people off the hook despite the fact that He loves each one so intensely. He has given His Son to deal with the terrible dilemma He faces, He cannot save any soul that doesn't come into salvation in Jesus.

God will not make Governor Barbour's mistake.


_________________
Tom Cameron

 2012/2/21 0:31Profile









 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an

Hi Nathan,

Just wanted to comment on something you said.

"But the problem I have with this is that it seems analogous to the idea of a parent allowing his child to drink poison and then after the child drinks it and is dying, the parent comes to the rescue by providing the child with the antidote that saves him."

I have that problem too. I see it more like this though: the parent allows the child to drink the poison and while the child is dying, the parent doesn't come to the rescue to save him but watches the child die.

God allows mankind to sin. Yeah He sends Christ to save the world but a vast majority of the entire world that has ever lived dies and goes to hell forever because they didn't even stand a chance of hearing about Christ. So in essence God doesn't save that vast majority but lets them die and go to hell forever.

 2012/2/21 1:47









 Re:


Hi paulmcg1. Do you understand what these verses are saying?

Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
Rom 1:23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
Rom 1:24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
Rom 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.



There is not a person of age of accountability that will be able to stand before GOD at the judgment and say, "I didn't know that You existed." -- because GOD is "Just" and will show each human being 'when'; either their conscience or a passing word from some other human or a thought of there being a Righteous Creator; that they had a choice of whether they should Seek Him or not. He 'is' Love and Just in all of His Ways. Much more "Just" than we have ever been to our fellow human beings.


A true story of a native village that had a Chief with a conscience. He'd go alone to a certain mountain and look up into the sky and talk to the only God that he figured would be "up there". He asked this God that He would show him how to be a good Chief over his people and to show him how to. He was given a vision of a cross and told that a man will come with that image.
Some time after, a Missionary came, bearing a Bible with a cross on the cover and the Chief knew this was the answer of the God that gave him that vision on the mountain.



He couldn't judge anyone on that day, if "they didn't know any better." The Word of GOD is true.

Rev 20:11-13 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.




GOD is GOOD. Amen! :)



 2012/2/21 2:40









 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an

Hello Nathan

Your question is a very common one amongst believers and even amongst unbelievers. Several facts, if you believe them, come to mind.

God did not allow Adam and Eve to sin. In fact He commanded them not to sin.i.e. to eat of the tree of Knowledge, of good and evil. This is not allowing, this is a commandment.

Adam and Eve were both innocent. Which is to say they had no knowledge of Good and evil when they were created.

Niether Adam or Eve actually ate of the tree of life. Had they done they would have lived forever.

In their innocence they would not have chosen to eat that fruit of eternal life, as they were already living souls and at that time could not die.

Adam was with Eve when the tempter discussing himself and communicating through a serpent came to tempt them. Eve was genuinely deceived into eating, though she affirmed that she should not do so. Whereas Adam was not deceived. Sin is accounted or reckoned through Adam. So although the act of both Adam and Eve was disobedience it is only Adams action which counts before God.

This is why the Scripture tells us that sin came in through one man Adam, and obedience or righteousness through the one man Christ.

Free will is undoubtably an important consideration. However, when God says, 'of the tree in the midst of the garden you cannot eat' , you don't have a free will to disobey God, only the power of that free will to choose to disobey.

The power to choose is not the same as the right to choose.

The pertinent question ought to be why if Adam was not deceived did he exercise his will and eat.

The key to this is in the new testament when Paul' says' know you not that when a man loves his wife, he loves himself'. Adam chose to follow Eve and thereby he chose himself. This may seem a little difficult to accept. But self choosing is at the root of all sin. Including that of Satan and the angels which fell previously.

God does not put temptation into the paths of His creatures. And He never allows them to choose to sin. Adam chose his wife and thereby he disobeyed God. Jesus said that a man would need to love Him (Jesus) more than even the members of his own family, to be counted worthy of Him at His coming kingdom. This is the same meaning. And whilst eternal life is a free gift of God, being counted worthy of the Lord return would be a matter of choosing.

I would encourage you to take those thoughts, which disturb you, captive to the obedience of Christ. May the Lord bless you and give you peace and rest to worship Him without being disturbed in your mind.

 2012/2/21 3:51
rnieman
Member



Joined: 2008/10/24
Posts: 146


 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an

Hello Revivalist, I hope this might help. God created Adam and Eve knowing they would fall. But in my opinion, true love cannot exist without choice. So God created Adam and Eve with free will to choose. And they chose evil. God could have created Adam and Eve and not allowed them the ability to choose to disobey. Now if He did create them without choice then they would not be obeying from the heart but rather out of robotic obedience. If you have children you will know that parents don't desire, in the long run, that their children obey just because we say obey. We desire them to obey from the heart in the setting of choice to obey or disobey, thus true love, not robotic love..... I hope this helps... russ

 2012/2/21 10:22Profile
ginnyrose
Member



Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7472
Mississippi

 Re: Does anyone else struggle with this theological question about God's love an

Revivalist,

You got a lot of good answers. Anbody answer your question to your satisfaction?

Just wondering..


_________________
Sandra Miller

 2012/2/21 11:04Profile





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