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Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1470
Dothan, Alabama


Brother Marc I had imagined someone might say that.
If I may inquire further of you on this...
In your understanding (objectively) does the sovereignty of a King extend beyond His kingdom or is it limited to it?


 2015/10/1 16:01Profile



You probably won't like this but the word "sovereignty" does not appear in the Bible (KJV), even one time.

So, who defined the word "sovereignty" if we did not let the Word of God define it? The Word of God defines and explains most of its words. Even the ESV version does not have that word.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary
sov·er·eign·ty \ˈsä-v(ə-)rən-tē, -vərn-tē also ˈsə-\
: unlimited power over a country
: a country's independent authority and the right to govern itself

1 : supreme excellence or an example of it
2 : supreme power especially over a body politic
a : freedom from external control : autonomy
b : controlling influence
3 : one that is sovereign; especially : an autonomous state

So, we can ask ourselves, do the subjects of a Kingdom have the ability to choose? We don't see the phrase "free will" or "freedom of choice", but we do see the King of the Kingdom telling man (through His servants) to "Choose".

Jos_24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

And if we can choose then we can reject.

1Sa 8:7 And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.

We can see from these two verses that God is not coercing man to choose or reject Him. Thus you can conclude man has freedom to choose or reject, which is basically "freedom of choice."

Though "sovereignty" is not a biblical word, it has been made into many, many theological concepts. It pretty much means supreme power and dominion but many other compound phrases have not really been defined and are bit ambiguous.

Calvinism, for instance has spawned many "sovereign" terms. For what purpose? You can think about that, I have no idea. Here are some of those terms.

"sovereign authority, - is that redundant?
"sovereign power" - redundant again?
"sovereign control" - and again. (couple of more - sovereign reign, sovereign rule)

Whatever happened to "ALL POWER" -
Mat 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

How about sovereign causation, decrees, determination, plan, purpose and sovereign will?
His sovereign determinations, counsel, and foreordination along with all the previous sovereign "words" only give rise to new theologies.

And sovereign love and grace, I am at a loss for words.

God is the only being that has absolute free will. He can do anything He desires to do (of course it will be consistent with His character). Man does not have free will. If a man is in jail, he can't just choose to be out of the jail. Now, that is what I call FREE WILL! Go wherever you want, do whatever you want, whenever you want. Even man does not have that kind of free will.

In the garden, man was seduced to make a choice and reject God. Man chose to not be dependent on God and bought the lie (You can be like God), that he can be completely independent. What a lie that was. He did not know he was going to be completely dependent and contingent on Satan's character and being.

Evangelicals to this day say that when man fell and was no longer dependent on God that he became independent. But, that was not the case. Man became dependent on Satan and began to manifest his new spiritual father's character and behavior. (Eph 2:2)

Evangelicals like to say that man cannot generate his own righteousness yet they are quick to point out that he does generate unrighteousness. According to their theology, he can generate one, but not the other. Huh?

But fallen man is incapable of self-generating anything. He is either dependent on Christ or he is dependent on Satan. He bears the fruit of the Holy Spirit or the fruit of the Satanic Spirit.

"He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning." (I John 3:8).

What's the devil got to do with it? Fallen, natural man is a son or daughter of the devil and the lusts of their father they will do. They cannot choose to stand independent from both God and Satan. Man always knows when he chooses God, because it goes against everything in him at the time and in this world (which lieth in wickedness). Most often, man does not know he has chosen the Devil and does not realize he is contingent and dependent on Satan's character, which produces Satanic fruit in men. (Strife, hatred, murder, jealousy, envy, coveting, adultery, etc).

1Jn 3:10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.

The fallen man is inextricably bound and dependent upon the "power of Satan"

Act 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

Unregenerated man may think he is free and independent but he is really a "slave to sin". (Rom 6:6).

He must hear the "good news", so he can know and understand the truth and exercise his God given ability to choose to be dependent on God and no longer on Satan (repentance). He must choose to REJECT Satan, the powers of darkness, sin and choose Christ, who has called him.

Evangelicals actually have fallen into humanism when they persist in thinking fallen man is independent. They are actually denying the activity of Satan (a big problem for the church is their ignorance), but none of us "lives unto himself".

Rom 14:7 For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.

You cannot live independently, apart from God or the Devil and you can't die independently, apart from them.

Man's identity is coming from one of them.

We like to say that Christ is on the throne of one's life or else "self" is. But, now you know the rest of the story (who really is on the throne if Christ is not).

Just as Satan disguises his diabolical activity in various religions, he disguises his activity in man, disguised as "self".

He knows you will begin to beat on yourself and treat yourself badly if you think your problem is self and some "dirty old man" that you can't get rid of.

Yes, we are to deny ourselves but we are denying the selfishness and sin that Satan is inspiring.

The lie of humanism is the independent "self" and the Church has swallowed it hook, line and sinker.

We still do live in the flesh, and the flesh is earthbound and cannot please God. It is a container for our soul and spirit. We must deny what the flesh wants when it is in conflict with the Spirit. Please don't stop eating food.

So, now does this verse make more sense to you:

Rom 6:7 For he that is dead is freed from sin.

Rom 6:16 Know ye not, that to WHOM ye yield yourselves servants to obey, HIS servants ye are to WHOM ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

Rom 6:18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

Rom 6:13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves UNTO GOD, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.

Remember, Satan counterfeits EVERYTHING of God. Satan has a Body and he is the Head of His body and he indwells his subjects but instead of giving life, he brings death and destruction. He disguises himself and obfuscates all that is of God. And please understand that not everyone is a foaming at the mouth demoniac.

2Cor 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

Forgive me if I did not answer your question regarding "where the sovereignty of God ends and free will begins". I don't know anything about that theology.

 2015/10/1 16:19

Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1470
Dothan, Alabama


Brother Julius,
I very much appreciate you making the point regarding the non-existence of the term sovereignty occurring in scripture as it's an important thing to make note of.
Having said that there is an inferred sovereignty from the concept of a King/kingdom, is there not? This doesn't necessarily preclude the subjects of said kingdom from having a choice, however it would in fact prove to provide a frame or narrative of any choice made by one under the rule of a King in that the choice would be either in compliance or rebellion, no?

And yes I'm aware of our reformed brothers extensive use and exalting of the concept they espouse. While I do not share in the whole of them I ha e found aspects to be consistent with the person Jesus as He is revealed in scripture. An example of this is He was willingly under the rule/command/sovereignty of His Father.


 2015/10/1 16:52Profile


Yes, JFW, I understand.

But, when you think about the question, "Where does God's Sovereignty End and Man's Free Will Begin", it is hard to put parameters around that particular phraseology because in reality, His Rule and Authority never ends and in a dynamic exchange between two persons, it is not as cut and dried as theology would like it to be.

Now, in relation to man making a choice, it is like any relationship based on mutual respect and love (The way God operates). Give and take, speak and wait, etc. God will speak, and wait for man to respond. Man will respond by either rejecting God and continue to be contingent on the father of lies or he will make a break from sin and rebellion and choose to place his trust (dependence) on God.

It is tough to parse out the dynamics of when something begins and ends in a dialogue between two persons.

Just look at this exchange between God and Cain.

Gen 4:3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.

Cain had some kind of relationship with the Lord because he brought an offering to Him.

Gen 4:5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

And Cain knew that God did not accept his offering. Read on and see the dynamics of relationship, give and take, speaking and waiting for an answer and you will see that this is how God works with most of us. He speaks, gives us some truth, and then waits for some action (reject or accept His truth) from us. So, his Kingship and authority are always being exercises and man, when it is his turn, is always exercising his freedom of choice. Because, as you will see, at each interval in God's and Cain's relationship, God is speaking, disseminating His will/truth to Cain and Cain is then choosing the way he wants to act upon that truth.

Gen 4:6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?
Gen 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
Gen 4:8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.
Gen 4:9 And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?
Gen 4:10 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.
Gen 4:11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand;
Gen 4:12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.
Gen 4:13 And Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear.
Gen 4:14 Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.
Gen 4:15 And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.
Gen 4:16 And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.

God's authority and power never ends and man's ability to choose God at anytime never ends.

God does not limit man in his ability to choose whether he wants to be dependent on Him or Satan. In fact, God wants to give man all the information he needs in order to make an informed choice. God has provided information in many, many ways to man, with the ultimate information being the Gospel. Romans 1 shows other ways that God has given information to men. Cain certainly knew the difference, but chose to reject God's way.

If we believe that God programmed Cain to choose the way he did, then we are a very sad lot, serving a very strange God.

 2015/10/1 17:37

Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1470
Dothan, Alabama


Guys I apologize as I'm in the middle of a 9hr drive and am limited to pit stops in order to read/respond.
for time purposes I'll offer an analogy;
If I being a (loving and responsible) father take/lead my emotionally intelligent (sensitive) son Asa to a place that seems (to him) dark, seedy and otherwise unlike his fathers character,... say a crack house- Now while it would be understandable that he would question the logic of it however would he not have the full expectation of his fathers protection, provision and security while under the direction (sovereignty) of his fathers will? Of couse! As his father is fully responsible (sovereign) for him while under his care. However what if Asa went to this same exact place without the directive of his father, much less his accompaniment.... would the son have any legitimate expectation of his fathers provision? protection? security? Absolutely not! as the son choose to go about doing what appeared to be right in his own eyes and has departed from his fathers will. Now let's go further... What if this child found himself in serious trouble in exercising his own will apart from his fathers and cried out to his father for help,... Would I as his father exhaust every resource available to me to aid him even tho he got himself into this thru his own disobedience? Yes I would!!!

Read Psalm 23 in reference to the first portion of this analogy and see if you can see it.

Now another question...
How did Jesus know Zacchaeus's name?
I meant hey had never met, and there were so many people that he had to climb up a tree just to get a glimpse of Jesus, and note that this was at the height of His ministry were He had gained ground with the Jews only to throw it all away in order to go to this mans (sinners) house which was unlawful.... and then never mentioned repentance and yet clearly declares "salvation has come to this house today" AFTER Zacchaeus repented and vowed works meet with repentance.


 2015/10/1 17:46Profile


Jesus knew Zachaeus' name because, uh,,,He was God.

Jesus never told me about repentance, I just knew I wanted to turn to Him and away from everything not of Him.

 2015/10/1 18:18

Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1470
Dothan, Alabama


Well while I appreciate your answer, I respectively disagree...
"The son doesn't say anything he hasn't heard his Father say".... So according to that God told him...


 2015/10/1 18:26Profile


Jesus knew their thoughts.

Luke 6:7-9
And the scribes and the Pharisees watched him, to see whether he would heal on the Sabbath, so that they might find a reason to accuse him. But HE KNEW THEIR THOUGHTS, and he said to the man with the withered hand, “Come and stand here.” And he rose and stood there. And Jesus said to them, “I ask you, is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to destroy it?”

Saying what His Father tells Him to say does not mean that He does not have knowledge of Zack's name.

He did not say, I only know what my Father teaches Me.

 2015/10/1 18:32

Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5679


If the answer to your original question is "never" and "never" then God is the most supremely bored being in the universe.

Regarding Zachaeus, I suspect Jesus had heard his name before and knew of him. After all he was a wee little man and a notorious tax collector.

I would agree with Fletcher that Jesus did not access his divinity during his earthly ministry. Phil. 2 says he emptied himself- not of divinity but of his divine attributes.

Everything he did he did by the power of the HS.


 2015/10/1 19:00Profile

Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1470
Dothan, Alabama


Yes brother Julius that's true but he did say "the son doesn't do anything he hasn't seen his Father do"
There's an interesting inference between this story of Z. being contrasted by another wealthy Jewish man in the preceding chapter (rich young ruler).

Btw- I've always read the reference you gave as Jesus using powers of observation/prophetic intuition as I'd imagine there's been times when you've experienced similar "insights" as that one. Besides Jesus himself declared the Father was greater than the son and if his "godship" was all incompassing/omniscient then he would know the hour and day of his return, which he does not.


 2015/10/1 19:02Profile

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