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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Does God love us for who we are?

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Oracio
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Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2038
Whittier CA USA

 Re:

Quote:
After the cross NO one is born in Adam.
WE no longer have a wicked and depraved heart.
WE have a NEW heart and a NEW Spirit.
He took away the old heart and totally replaced it.


Yet Paul said, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find."

While it is true that we are made new creations in Christ and are radically transformed from the inside out, we still have a fallen nature that opposes God, and we must put it to death daily by taking up our cross, denying ourselves and following Christ.

Jesus said that apart from Him we(born again Christians) can do nothing, meaning nothing of any worth in God's sight. Even as Christians we can and do sin at times and we grieve and quench the Spirit. Anything we do apart from faith is sinful and reflects the old man. Scripture says we are to put off the old man, implying that the old man is still a reality we must deal with and crucify by the Spirit's power.


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Oracio

 2014/10/15 11:08Profile
proudpapa
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Joined: 2012/5/13
Posts: 2936


 Re:

RE: ///Yet Paul said, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find."///

I believe if you will read The 7th chapter of Romans slowly and in context, that you will find that the above verses is clearly presented as a first person narrative of a past tense event. also Romans 7 clearly refutes the idea that men are born sinners.

 2014/10/15 11:27Profile
Oracio
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Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2038
Whittier CA USA

 Re:

Quote:
I believe if you will read The 7th chapter of Romans slowly and in context, that you will find that the above verses is clearly presented as a first person narrative of a past tense event. also Romans 7 clearly refutes the idea that men are born sinners.


Paul says in that chapter, “For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. 16 If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17 But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.”-Rom.7:15-17

We know that man in his lost condition does not hate sin but loves it and drinks it like water. Yet Paul says there that he hates sin.

“For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good.”-Rom. 7:19-21

Again, Paul says he has a will to do good, yet unregenerate people have a will bent toward evil; their thoughts and plans are filled with evil continuously.

“For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man.”-Rom.7:22

By contrast, concerning unregenerate people Paul says in Romans 8:5-7, “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be.”


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Oracio

 2014/10/15 13:23Profile
Oracio
Member



Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2038
Whittier CA USA

 Re: Does God love us for who we are?

Quote:
We know that God loves the sinner (Romans 5:8). But if someone were to ask you, "Does God love me for who I am?" - how would you answer that?

(it's a pretty loaded question... what does "for who I am" mean anyway?)



Since this question is asked in the context of sharing the gospel I thought I'd share about a recent conversation I had. Just the other day as I was taking a walk during my lunch break I approached a young man in order to try to share the gospel with him. He was in front of me and I said(I'll be paraphrasing as I may not recall the exact wording exchanged), “Hey young man (he stopped and turned around), can I encourage you with this booklet, it has a good message in it, it starts out with this good question, ‘Are You A Good Person?’”. As he took the booklet and looked at it I said, “I sometimes ask people the question, ‘Would you consider yourself to be good enough to go to heaven if you stood before God today?' How would you answer that question?” He said something like, “Probably not.” I asked, “Why not?” He said, “Because of all the bad stuff I’ve done and keep doing.”

I said, “So you don’t think you’ve done well with God’s standard of goodness? For example, how do you think you’ve done with the Ten Commandments?” He said, “I think I’ve done pretty well with them actually.” After asking him about a few specific Commandments (about lying, stealing, blasphemy, and heart-adultery, which he admitted to committing)(like Jesus did with the rich young ruler in Matt.19:16-22), I said, "I'm not judging you but you've just admitted to me that you're a lying, thieving, blasphemous adulterer at heart, and you have to face God on Judgment Day." He laughed a bit and was pretty surprised, but he agreed. Then I asked him if he thought he would be found innocent or guilty based on that standard if He stood before God today. He immediately said guilty. I asked him if it would mean heaven or hell for him, and he said hell.

When I asked him if it concerned him, he stayed quiet for a moment in reflection and then said, “Well, yeah, but I can’t worry too much about it because after all, I can’t just ask for forgiveness.” He said he had tried Catholicism and Jehovah’s Witnesses but it didn’t work out for him. I asked him if he knew what God had done so we could be forgiven and escape the judgment of hell. He said he had no clue. I then explained that God sent His Son Jesus Christ from heaven to earth around 2,000 years ago, that He lived a perfect life we could never live, that He voluntarily laid down His life and suffered and died on the cross to take our punishment, and that He rose again from the dead. I explained that what God commands us to do is to repent (turn from our sins) and believe (trust) in Jesus Christ.

I asked him if what I shared made sense and he said it did. I asked him when he thought he would repent and trust in Christ, to which he replied, “Well, when I’m ready I guess because I honestly don’t think I’m ready right now.” I reasoned with him about the value of his soul. I asked him if he would sell his eyes for 50 million dollars and he said no way. I told him that if his eyes are so priceless and valuable to him how much more valuable should his soul be, and then shared with him Matthew 10:26 which warns about losing one’s soul for all of eternity in hell. I asked him if he could guarantee that he would see another day (he said no), and I reasoned with him and shared scriptures about the brevity of this life and the need to repent and trust Christ today.

I then gave him one of my church’s info cards and invited him to church. He asked if we accept homosexuals. I told him we welcome everyone to our church services, and that we share with everyone the same message I had just shared with him, that one must turn from their sins and trust in Christ for the forgiveness of their sins, regardless of what their sins are or what background they come from. I did tell him that we do believe that homosexuality is a sin, like heterosexual fornication or adultery or getting drunk or high or cursing are sins we must turn from. I shared with Him about being born again and experiencing life-transformation by God's power and receiving a new heart with new desires. He was nodding in sort of semi-agreement (seemingly resistant). So I left him with those thoughts and shook his hand and we parted ways.

So when it comes to sharing the gospel with homosexuals I don’t believe it’s always necessary to even mention the sin of homosexuality, unless they bring it up or we discern that they need to understand what God says about it. As we reason about other sins God the Holy Spirit can bring enough conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment.


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Oracio

 2014/10/15 16:13Profile
proudpapa
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Joined: 2012/5/13
Posts: 2936


 Re:

RE: ///We know that man in his lost condition does not hate sin but loves it and drinks it like water. Yet Paul says there that he hates sin.///

Many unsaved people hate sin.
As an unsaved man and a Jewish pharisees Paul was very Zealous to be obedient to the Law (he hated sin)

Pauls entire point in the book of Romans is that the Gospel has the power to do that which the Law does not have the power to accomplish.

The man in romans 7 is clearly a man trying to please God through the performance of the Law, that is not the Gospel.

RE ///“For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good.”-Rom. 7:19-21///

Read those verses in context, they are clearly speaking of a past tense event (Pre Saved Paul) written in a first person narrative. It is a man under the law trying to please God. (topic headings are not inspired they muffle the truths of the Bible)

RE:///Again, Paul says he has a will to do good, yet unregenerate people have a will bent toward evil; their thoughts and plans are filled with evil continuously.///

Most unsaved people that I know have a will to do what is good, but how to perform that which is good they find not.

They want to stop there drinking, smoking, self abuse, pornoghraphy etc. , but how to perform that which is good they find not.

RE: ///“For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man.”-Rom.7:22///

In Philippians 3:6 Paul says of his unsaved past self concerning the law :".. touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless."




















 2014/10/15 17:46Profile
Oracio
Member



Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2038
Whittier CA USA

 Re:

Okay proudpapa, I will grant the possibility of that interpretation for that passage.

But to me there could be a difference between the first half of the chapter and the second half. We see that Paul changes from clearly speaking of himself in the past tense in the first half to speaking of himself in the present tense in the second half.

So to me another possibility is that in the second half of the chapter Paul may be speaking of himself in terms of his "being" or "self" apart from Christ, whether in the past or present.

In other words, before being born again Paul was not able to conquer the flesh in his own strength or in and of himself, and the same applies after we are born again. In and of ourselves we cannot conquer the flesh. In and of ourselves we are nothing and we still live with this flesh in which nothing good dwells. As believers, we must abide in Christ and yield to the Spirit's working and power in our lives. So the same principle applies either way. Again, in and of ourselves and in our own strength we are nothing but dust or worms, hell-deserving sinners saved by the grace of God, and we can and should consider ourselves to be the chiefs of sinners like Paul did, but by the grace of God...


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Oracio

 2014/10/15 20:22Profile
proudpapa
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Joined: 2012/5/13
Posts: 2936


 

Brother Oracio,

RE/// Paul may be speaking of himself in terms of his "being" or "self" apart from Christ, whether in the past or present.///

I recall Bro Denny giving that duall understanding, And I also can definetly agree with it.



 2014/10/15 21:11Profile
Oracio
Member



Joined: 2007/6/26
Posts: 2038
Whittier CA USA

 Re:

I felt led to share these two short vids here which I think explain well what our condition is apart from Christ:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5wJK5HlGOYg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gub5uaiT3fo


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Oracio

 2014/10/16 18:30Profile





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