I appreciate your response as well. In regards to the light spoken of in 2 Corinthians 4:6, would you see this as the same light referred to in John 1:9, "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" ?
Yours in Christ,
| 2008/10/28 19:08||Profile|
Well, Paul describes this light as "the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ", and in verse 4 describes this light as simply "the gospel".
So, I probably wouldn't make a total connection with this light and the light described in John, which appears to be describing Christ himself.
Grace to you.
| 2008/10/28 19:22||Profile|
Forgive me for not reading this entire thread, but I just wanted to make a single comment. If God has actually "predestined" for a few to be saved -- doesn't that mean everyone else is going to Hell? In this sense, the rest are (by default) "predestined" to go to Hell.
Of course, this goes if we believe the interpretation of the word "predestined" in the Calvinist sense -- that God has "chosen" a few to be saved. If we go along with the notion that "predestination" is only "predestination" because God sits in [u]eternity[/u] and knows the End from the Beginning -- and already knows who will ultimately belong with Him in Eternity -- then this wouldn't make any sense.
I suppose that the whole argument can be summed up in the Scriptures that don't mention the ideas of predestination. The soul who sins will die. Don't live in sin. Don't return to a life of sin like a dog returns to his vomit. Don't run ahead of the teachings of Christ. The end cannot be good for a person who no longer walks with Christ.
| 2008/10/28 19:56||Profile|
We deny no such thing. Some are "fitted to destruction", while others are "afore prepared to glory" Romans 9:22,23,24
1 Peter 2:8 "And a stone of stumbling , and a rock of offence, even to them that stumble at the Word, being dissobedient: WHEREUNTO ALSO THEY WERE APPPOINTED."
| 2008/10/28 20:21|
I hear you on this Krispy:
This is a topic that will never be settled here and no one on either side will ever be able to fully understand this side of glory.
Thats what I know for sure about Calvinism.
| 2008/10/28 20:55||Profile|
Clyde would have been, but no, Clyde was aborted before he came into the world.
This is Clyde, he lived until 23 and died in a car accident. Clyde was not saved for he was not one of Gods elect.
Jesus said of Judas that it would have been better if he had never been born.
Which would be better for the non-elect if they have no chance to be one of Gods elect, to be born or to be aborted?
| 2008/10/28 23:53||Profile|
Las Vegas, NV
| Re: Does God Predestine Some Men to Hell? (Double Predestination)|
An interesting question rbanks, but please allow me to answer, as I believe I am right in the answer you will receive.
if they have no chance
The non-elect do have a chance, but of course, they will "never freely choose" to repent and believe while they are depraved.
I wasn't trying to state that salvation precedes faith. I agree with you, salvation takes place after faith. I was stating that regeneration precedes faith and gives the sinner the desire to believe.
To be regenerated is to be being saved. Unless, you honestly believe that salvation is something other than being born-again by the Spirit of Christ.
5.[/b] [b][u]He saved us[/u][/b], not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, [b][u]by the washing of regeneration[/u] and renewing by the Holy Spirit[/b].
For this very reason I disagree with the understanding of regeneration preceding faith. It is my belief that God overcomes our evil hearts with good, that is, His "common grace" is sufficient to soften our hearts. And how much more sufficient through the Light of men, Jesus Christ, hence now God calls all men unto repentance?
If I am not mistaken the concept of regeneration preceding faith is to sustain the supposition that we must love God before we will "freely" believe in Him and repent of our evil deeds. However, I do not find such a requirement in Scripture, unless you can point it out to me. What I do see is "those who are forgiven much, love much." Is it not then true that our love of God comes from being forgiven our sins through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ which is obviously after believing unto salvation through the regeneration and cleansing work of the Holy Spirit?
Does God require us to love Him (as though we could love the Father without Christ the Son) before we can seek the One who is already seeking us and desiring to manifest Himself in us?
Just as Live4JC asked the very same question I am leading to,
In regards to the light spoken of in 2 Corinthians 4:6, would you see this as the same light referred to in John 1:9, "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" ?
TaylorOtwell you have neglected to take into account the full context of [b]2 Corinthians 4:4[/b], "in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see [b]the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God[/b]."
So what exactly would you say the difference is between "the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God" and "the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ"?
It is absolutely the Same Light. If it were not the Same Light then the world would not be condemned already for rejecting the Light. As you cannot reject something you have never been offered or seen. I will explain this further when I attempt to answer with a brief exposition of [b]Romans 9[/b].
It is also of interest to note that Paul says here in this letter that it is "the god of this world [who] has blinded the minds of the unbelieving."
Hello 3rddaymsngr, and welcome to SI!
I believe in Predestination as taught by the Bible
My brother wisely warned me against saying things like this -- as in my own case by saying, "it's Scriptural." There is a big difference between saying things are written in the Bible and saying things are "as taught by the Bible."
To be honest, we all have an understanding of what is written in the Bible and an understanding of those things God has revealed through His Son. If what you have said is "as taught by the Bible," then by all means write "Thus saith the LORD God" with your post -- for that is the essence of what you have just said, "as taught by the Bible." And thereby condemning any variance to the authority of your beliefs and causing others to judge the words of God.
Likewise, if anyone says they were "inspired by the Holy Ghost," well then their ministry (service) better come with the power of the Holy Ghost as revealed in Scripture, with conviction of sin, conviction of righteousness, and conviction of judgment.
Is it little wonder ministers and teachers are in danger of greater condemnation?
So then, to look at the context of [b]Romans 9[/b], we see this:
Romans 9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
I understand this verse differently then what is commonly considered.
I take this from the perspective if "God that sheweth [b][u]no[/u] mercy[/b]," wherefore, running and willing would be in vain. If God were such that He condemned all without pardon of sin, and justly so, then there would be no use in repenting (running) or seeking after God (willing) for He would be found of no one: judgment would triumph over mercy.
However, God has first loved us (a truly great mystery) and has come to seek and save the lost, such that He is not far from anyone, for behold, He stands at the door of our hearts and knocks; He is the Light that is shining in the darkness.
Therefore, because God sheweth mercy, we may run and will by faith as He works in us those things which are according to His good pleasure.
Romans 9:18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
The "[b]therefore[/b]" here is conditioned upon everything Paul just said. Which means there is a lot more to be understood from this verse when it is taken in its context; indeed, a lot more.
To begin, I believe to make such a distinction between "active mercy" upon the redeemed and "passive hardening" upon the reprobate, as explained in the video from the opening post, is inaccurate. However, I completely agree with standing against the error of "Equal Ultimacy." The difference I present to this doctrine is the way in which we understand God [b]actively[/b], rather than passively, hardening the hearts of the reprobate. The error I see comes from thinking that if God is actively working in the hearts of reprobates then God is the one authoring the sins of the world, this being obviously untrue. That is to say, if God is working in the hearts of sinners then whatever God does, it is assumed, must be effective to the salvation of all souls, as we know God is not the author of sin and He comes to save.
Let us consider the context of the hardening of Pharoah's heart in this way:
God, who is Light, actively reveals truth (through signs and miracles and judgments and working upon the conscience) and all the while Pharoah hardened his heart against the Lord, and sinned in doing so ([b]Exodus 9:34[/b]). Thus we have God who hardened Pharoah's heart and Pharoah who hardened his heart against the Lord. On this point AbideinHim gave us the excellent quotation by Spurgeon, that quote in part, "Two truths cannot be contradictory to each other. If, then, I find taught in one place that everything is fore-ordained, that is true; and if I find in another place that man is responsible for all his actions, that is true; and it is my folly that leads me to imagine that two truths can ever contradict each other."
I believe there is such a thing as Jonathan Edwards describes as "passive wrath," or I might describe it by the "patient wrath" or "temporal wrath" as compared to the Eternal Judgment, yet I question "passive hardening." As I do not see it as God "withdrawing Himself" but man fleeing further away from the Light -- searing his conscience against the revealed knowledge of God. Honestly, the darkness flees from the Light, not the other way around. The greater the manifestion of God's glory -- the greater the judgments upon Egypt -- the more Pharoah's heart was hardened against the Lord. If anything I would say God drawing closer, or revealing Himself, to Pharoah was the cause for the further hardening of his heart. Is it not true that we are judged according to the Light -- to the one who is given much, much is required? The one who knows to do right and does not do it, to [b][u]him[/b][/u] it is [b]sin[/b]; and again, [b]John 3:19[/b], "this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world."
The very idea of "passive hardening," as has been previously mentioned by some others in this thread, gives the direct implication that God is not seeking to save all who are lost. The way predestination and election were explained in the video was something like this: if you are saved it is because God chose to regenerate you and if you are condemned it is because you chose to hate God; which is really another way of saying God still chose you, but rather chose (or "allowed") you to go on hating Him on your way to hell. Where is the Shepherd who leaves the 99 righteous to save the 1 lost, as opposed to the shepherd who leaves the 99 unrighteous to their obvious fate of everlasting fire to save the 1 righteous? Or where is the God who so loved the world and who desires that none should perish? Does He desire that none should perish without acting upon His desire -- "passively" allowing the many to go to hell?
We might argue, and indeed many have, that if God is the One who sovereignly redeems each saint then why wouldn't God redeem every sinner if His desire is that none should perish (an obvious falacy)? Is God become partial, or as others have said, is His mercy "arbitrary"? Some have told me God predestines people to everlasting wrath so that He might show His Justice ... well, is not God's Justice also perfected in the cross of calvary? What more does God need to show forth of His glory that is not wholly, perfectly satisfied, and awesomely manifested in Christ Jesus?
Predestination and election must of necessity know the God who seeks to save everyone, while yet few shall be saved against the will of God, and in no way diminishing the Sovereignty or Holiness or Mercy of God towards all men whom He has created.
32.[/b] For God has shut up all in disobedience so that He may show mercy to all.
As I have explained in this way, God can and does actively work in the hearts of reprobates with the intention of His salvation -- revealing Light to reprove our wicked hearts -- and this without being the Author of sin and further adding condemnation upon them for the Justice of His wrath against all uncleanness and ungodliness. That is, for the purpose of giving place, as it was previously mentioned, for the grieving of the Holy Spirit, [b]Acts 7:51[/b], "You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did." Which falls right in line with the thoughts I have laid out here: resisting the Light and witness of the Holy Spirit who has come to lead all to life in Christ.
If God says, "I have set before you life and death; now choose." I do not think to myself this is a strange command because I cannot choose or I am not willing to choose. What God commands us to do, He will not leave us to our own devices and strengths but He will lead us into obedience -- as Jesus said, "with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."
And again, to consider the context of [b]Romans 9[/b],
Rebecca bore Isaac twins, both Jacob and Esau:
From the one lump of Rebecca's womb came forth two vessel (sons): one for honor and one for dishonor.
Thus, in this way, through both the hardening of Pharoah's heart and the story of these twins, are we to understand what Paul is trying to convey with his parable of the Potter and the clay.
If we read over the prophecy concerning these two sons, "The elder shall serve the younger." And again, it was declared, "Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated."
So then let us consider these two as set for our instruction. How did the elder come to serve the younger in fulfillment of the Lord's word? Jacob coveted his Esau's inheritance and through bribery took it from him. After this Jacob, along with his mother, through treachery deceived his father, Isaac, to receive Esau's blessing. Thus we see that through the craftiness of sinful deeds the prophecy concerning these two brothers was fulfilled. Curious, I know. The question then becomes: was this sin God's fore-ordained plan to fulfill His prophecy? Was it supposed to happen another way ... or rather, could it have happened another way? How else could the elder have served the younger? The younger could not have simply received the inheritance and blessing of the firstborn unless Esau had died -- wherefore the elder would not have lived to serve the younger. This is an interesting thing to consider.
However, back to the point. Here we see the sin of Pharoah hardening his heart against the Lord and the sin of Jacob, the supplanter, being ordered together by Paul to contextually explain this mystery he describes as "the Potter who has power over the clay" and "therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth."
Is this chapter of [b]Romans 9[/b] truly as straight-forward as "Some are 'fitted to destruction,' while others are 'afore prepared to glory' "?
Personally it is my belief that God in His condescending mercy desires and seeks out to have a people for Himself, to be their God, and dwell and walk among them in Majesty -- which shall come to pass. And when God comes to establish Himself in the hearts of the sons of men, they are either broken and humbled by the Kindness and Holiness of God or repulsed by the Lord of Glory "heaping coals of fire on their heads" ([b]Romans 12:20[/b]). Thus it stands to reason that if God comes in mercy to redeem a vile sinner -- to take Israel for example: and the loving mercies and kindnesses of God, rather ironically (such is the folly of men), harden their hearts and turn them away to serve other gods then how can God who is love gather these people unto Himself -- what fellowship has Light with darkness?
Seriously, what would happen to us if God in His Holiness walked among us while we were yet without Christ and depraved in our sins? It is a humbling conclusion, it would have been instant Judgment and we would be turned into hell.
Therefore, He must give them over to do those things which are inconvenient that they may reap upon themselves destruction and there see their folly in departing from the Lord. Yet, even this without God's intention to cast them into hell, but as Paul admonished the church, for the destruction of their flesh, so likewise God turns us over to His "passive wrath" so that we might cry out to Him in our distress whereby His mercy is ever-present and ready to bring us back and set our feet upon the Rock. However, there is still set for each and every man once to die and then the judgment -- there are surely some that God Himself has and shall put to death in His fierce and burning anger. Indeed, it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God -- whether He carries us heavenward or treads us under the weight of His omnipotence in that lake of fire.
| 2008/10/29 1:25||Profile|
Bog, I'm not sure if you understood, or I didn't explain my position, and the position of the reformed throughout history, on regeneration.
I mean by regeneration that event where God removes the heart of stone (Ezek 36:26-27) and the light of the gospel shines in and is beautiful to the soul (2nd Cor 4). The sinner then sees the glory of what he once hated and flees to Christ. The sequence of events will probably not be discernable to the one who is drawn.
I did not mean to present it as us taking the initiative in loving God.
Perhaps I'm not explaining this clearly, so please consult the Westminster Confession Chapter 10 on Effectual Calling for a description by men more articulate than myself.
Grace to you.
| 2008/10/29 7:19||Profile|
Bog, an excellent post my brother!
I hope people will read it, consider and be blessed by the fruit of your labor.
Brother Taylor, what you are calling regeneration, many would call conviction...conviction precedes regeneration. When a person is convicted they respond to God or reject Him. God giving the new heart is regeneration and the only way we can be saved. To God be the glory!
| 2008/10/29 8:21||Profile|
Conviction is a work of God the Holy Spirit, as taught by our Lord in John 16.
No sinner would ever be convicted were it not for a sovereign work of the Spirit.
Ultimately, friends, at the end of the day, the opposers to this have God responding to some merit in man (conviction, sorrow, etc.), whereas I firmly believe the Scriptures that it is not of human will or exertion (Romans 9:16), but on God who shows mercy - free and pure.
O Lord, vindicate thy name!
Grace to you.
| 2008/10/29 8:40||Profile|