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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : What about those who do not know?

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TMK
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Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5483
NC, USA

 Re:

//my bad on posting reply in wrong thread :/
Had copied your quote and realized I wasn’t logged in and clicked wrong thread to reply after logging in... good catch and thanks for redirecting ;)//

You were in the correct thread- it just seemed it belonged over in this one.

Thanks for you thoughtful reply. I appreciate it!


_________________
Todd

 2020/5/18 8:05Profile
makrothumia
Member



Joined: 2005/5/19
Posts: 668
Texas

 Re:

Mercy and Judgment belong to God so He alone knows.

We can know that Paul said the coming of the lawless one will be in a accordance with the working of Satan and every deception that deceives those who are perishing.

Then he follows - they are perishing because they refused the love of the truth so as to be saved. I believe condemnation comes for refusing the love of the truth.

There is a passage in Jeremiah, where the prophet wondered about the poor, asking aloud “perhaps they do not know the word of the Lord?” So he went to the rich and powerful and discovered a “conspiracy” to cast off the word of the Lord.

I can not know about those who have not had the opportunity (if such people even exist), but those who refuse to know or neglect so great a salvation - we can know for certain that they will be judged

Mak


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Alan and Dina Martin

 2020/5/18 9:08Profile
BranchinVINE
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Joined: 2016/6/15
Posts: 689
Australia

 Re:


The scriptures say:

1 John 5:19 –
…… the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.

2 Cor. 4:3-4 –
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.


Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. He came to save sinners, to open their eyes, to set them free.

1 John 3:8 –
The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.

Luke 4:18-19 (NKJV) –
“The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”
v. 21 –
And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Col. 2:14-15 –
having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.

1 John 2:2 –
And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.


God’s judgements bring men out of evil into righteousness.

Isa. 26:9 –
For when the earth experiences Your judgments
The inhabitants of the world learn righteousness.


Mercy triumphs over judgement and there is hope for all men.

Luke 1:78-79 –
Because of the tender mercy of our God,
With which the Sunrise from on high will visit us,
TO SHINE UPON THOSE WHO SIT IN DARKNESS AND THE SHADOW OF DEATH,
To guide our feet into the way of peace."

1 Cor. 15:17-45 –
For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.





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Jade

 2020/5/18 10:35Profile
makrothumia
Member



Joined: 2005/5/19
Posts: 668
Texas

 Re:

God's judgments also destroy evil doers, everyone whose name was not found written in the lamb's book of life.

Revelation 20
And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

The second death is not to teach men righteousness, but to annihilate the presence of evil from God's new heaven and earth. This will be the ultimate victory in the destruction of the work of Satan.

The reason for men being condemned is not in question. Our Lord made the "verdict" for condemnation clear in John Chapter 3.
He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.

Jesus gave the reason for the condemnation - "light has come, but men love darkness MORE THAN light -μᾶλλον (a comparative indicating that men preferred one over the other). Jesus did not speak about those who have never seen light, He simply said "Light has come" and men loved darkness MORE THAN light because their deeds are evil."

We should be careful how we apply this, but the language is clear. Men will be condemned for loving darkness more than light. Jesus certainly knew about all nations upon the earth. He was not naïve.

Men can be in the dark, because they want to stay there. Men can be in a state of ignorance, because they despise wisdom and discipline. For such men, they will be filled with the fruit of their own ways. They will perish not for lack of opportunity to know, but for refusal to receive the truth when they were given the opportunity.

mak

added: Not all are IN Christ - but YES - all who are IN Christ will be made alive. AMEN We all bore the image of the earthly - ADAM - Now LET US bear the image of the heavenly.


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Alan and Dina Martin

 2020/5/18 10:59Profile
CofG
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Joined: 2017/2/12
Posts: 487
Cambodia

 Re:

The Lord has said in the OT that His own people ignored His offers of mercy and commands for repentance because of their stubborn evil hearts. I think it is fair to infer that the same is true for anyone to whom God offers mercy or commands repentance and they refuse. I don't think there is Bible warrant to assume that anyone knows intuitively that they need to repent and thereby they will be given mercy. They might throw themselves to God's mercy like the Nineveh people did "hoping" He might be merciful once they repented but there is no confidence in such hope, only a "perhaps". There is no law of mercy and I think there is some confusion about that. That is Biblical. No inference necessary.

One of the great truths pervasive through the Bible is that God treats people differently according to His own will and discretion when it comes to mercy. You might as well buy your Bible with erasable ink in order to avoid that.

When Moses met with God and asked Him to show Moses "his goodness", this is what God said about His goodness:


And he said, "I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name 'The LORD.' And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. - Exodus 33:19

In context, God was about to show redemption mercy to the people of Israel and not show the same mercy to the people of Egypt. This extension of mercy, great mercy, was not because of something "good' in His people. God said He chose them in spite of the fact that they were rebellious and stiff necked. Mercy from God is not because of some goodness in men. This prime text on mercy and God's goodness should be more than sufficient to make that case.

Yet God provides a second great instance of redemptive goodness centuries later and completely flips the script. When Jesus came He came like Moses to set a people free in unmerited mercy. Yet, some people would not have this same mercy in the same way. This is what God said in the case of the Gentiles getting mercy this time and most of the Jews not provided it this time:



What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God's part? By no means!
For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion."

So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.
For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth."
So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills. - Romans 9:16-18


I have seen the word "fairness" and "impartiality" used in the context of a discussion on mercy. These words don't belong in that conversation in God's own words.

Fairness has to do with justice. Impartiality says that a judge would not treat two equally guilty parties differently. That is not what mercy means. In fact, mercy always is at the discretion of the judge. If the judge "owed" two parties the same mercy then fairness and impartiality would be appropriate concepts in the issue of mercy.

Has God promised equal justice to all? Yes. Has He promised equal mercy to all? Only to those who would believe in His Son. Has He promised every man would have the same opportunity to hear the Gospel of grace? No. Does that make God nasty, unfair, not good. Not according to God, He has said clearly His goodness is revealed as He shows mercy to whom He wills to show mercy not on the basis of anything other than Himself.

Do we wish God would show the same mercy to all in the same degree and all the time? Yes. But, we don't have the wisdom of God. That's why in issues of mercy, relying on God's word is so critical and not relying on experience or extrapolations is important.

I don't know why God chooses to bestow great mercy on some and lesser mercy on others. God has not revealed it and my opinion on the matter is less than worthless.

The grace and mercy God has shown each of us is completely unmerited and attempts to justify His grace by something in us runs counter to Scripture.

A lot of people will say they believe mercy is unmerited and yet hold onto some idea that it is at least partially deserved based on some virtue in themselves or others. God has said just the opposite.

He said He had mercy on Israel in spite of their stubborn rebellious hearts. He said He had mercy on the gentiles in spite of the fact that they weren't even pursuing righteousness. That's God's high view of the situation.

We all want every man to have the chance to know Jesus. I actively spend my life pursuing that. My desire or especially God's desire that all men repent though is not the same thing as
saying God, if He is fair or good, would make sure all men have the same opportunity. Then mercy would be owed or God would be obligated by His character to give mercy to all if He gives mercy to any. God said the exact opposite about His goodness and His fairness.


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Robert

 2020/5/18 11:22Profile
makrothumia
Member



Joined: 2005/5/19
Posts: 668
Texas

 Re:

The Lord indeed revealed His glory to Moses, but the quote from chapter 33 is only the partial revelation. The full revelation is not until chapter 34:

Now the Lord descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. 6 And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, 7 keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation

Here in the midst of God declaring His Name as merciful, gracious, longsuffering, abounding in goodness and truth and keeping mercy unto thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin - THEN THE GLORY OF HIS JUDGMENT - HIS RIGHT TO BE SEVERE is also revealed and is equally HIS GLORY! "by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the LAWLESSNESS of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children of the children, down to the third and fourth generation."

The LXX has this καὶ οὐ καθαριεῖ τὸν ἔνοχον ἐπάγων ἀνομίας πατέρων ἐπὶ τέκνα - translated - furthermore, the Lord will not cleanse the LIABLE, bringing the lawlessness of the fathers upon the children..."

This is in perfect harmony with the passages in Ezekiel 3, 18 and 33. If a man takes heed to the warning of judgment and turns from his wicked ways, he will experience the glory of God's mercy, but if he refuses then he will be held liable for his wickedness. God does not purpose (boulamai) the death of the wicked. God desires Mercy - but if men refuse to turn from their wickedness - they will be held liable for their sins. He will have mercy upon whom He has mercy and He will harden whom He will harden.

And what if He bore with great patience the objects prepared unto destruction - men like Pharaoh. A man who was so despicably hardened that he ordered the infanticide of every male child born to the Hebrews, just to keep them under His bondage as slaves. I have no doubt that some of his own royal court objected to such a strategy, but whatever misgivings Pharaoh might have had, he hardened himself to any sense of decency or mercy. I am glad that God saw fit to "harden" his heart, repaying him according to his own hardness. It is not a stretch that God knew how hard this man already was and handed him over to his depravity. What does it take in a man to order the infanticide of thousands of innocent lives, willfully bringing pain and sorrow to every mother who suffered such a horrific injustice. God held Pharaoh liable for his wickedness - He just bore with Him to make His own name and glory known.

mak

added: And may God be glorified that He repaid Egypt according to her deeds. She was accomplice to the horrible infanticide of male Hebrew infants, and the Lord repaid her with a just recompense. Every single home in Egypt suffered the loss of the firstborn male child. Glory to God.


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Alan and Dina Martin

 2020/5/18 12:39Profile
deogloria
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Joined: 2020/2/12
Posts: 31


 Re:

Thank you mak,
this is the best and most Biblical study I have ever seen on this topic. We have probably all heard some kind of "traditional" views that have been passed down to us. But you have shown us that it is not enough to just read some commentaries or listen to even well know Bible teachers.
Searching and knowing Scripture is essential.

We should be concerned about those who never heard, but we should be even more concerned about us who have heard...!

"Here in the midst of God declaring His Name as merciful, gracious, longsuffering, abounding in goodness and truth and keeping mercy unto thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin - THEN THE GLORY OF HIS JUDGMENT - HIS RIGHT TO BE SEVERE is also revealed and is equally HIS GLORY!"

1 Peter 4:17For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who disobey the gospel of God?

 2020/5/18 16:56Profile
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5483
NC, USA

 Re:

//what will the outcome be for those who disobey the gospel of God?//

What does it mean to disobey the gospel of God?


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Todd

 2020/5/18 17:46Profile
makrothumia
Member



Joined: 2005/5/19
Posts: 668
Texas

 Re:

The participle used for "disobeying" is ἀπειθούντων - a form of ἀπειθέω - = refusal to be persuaded

Cognate: 544 apeithéō – literally, refuse to be persuaded (by the Lord). See 543 (apeitheia)

543 apeítheia(from 1 /A "not" and 3982 /peíthō, "persuaded") – properly, someone not persuaded, referring to their willful unbelief, i.e. the refusal to be convinced by God's voice. This is the core-meaning of the entire word-family: 543 (apeítheia), 544 (apeithéō), 545 (apeithḗs). All these cognates focus on man's decision to reject God's offers of faith, i.e. refusal to be persuaded in their heart concerning obeying His will (Word


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Alan and Dina Martin

 2020/5/18 17:52Profile
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5483
NC, USA

 Re:

Thanks Mak.

That sort of begs the question of how plain the offer(s) must be.

On one hand we have the Pharisees who refused to believe on purpose despite knowing in their heart of hearts that Jesus really was who he said he was.

Then on the other hand we have the remote jungle tribes and the child raised in an ISIS household.


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Todd

 2020/5/18 18:52Profile





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