A Logical Conundrum

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by The Archangel, Jun 30, 2006.

  1. The Archangel

    The Archangel
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    Before We Get Started.

    Both sides of the Calvinist/Arminian debate seem to have their own “Scriptures” they like to tout, to the exclusion of the other side’s arguments and scriptures. Many Arminians seem to get jittery when the Calvinists run to the Greek text and the Calvinists seem to get frustrated when the Arminians won’t engage the text at more than a superficial level. Because of these developments, Calvinists attack the presuppositions of the Arminians and the Arminians attack the presuppositions of the Calvinists, essentially devolving into an ad hominem argument.

    What this does is damage the reputation of Christ. After all, I think He said, “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35 ESV). I will admit, as you should, we are ALL are guilty of this, Calvinists and Arminians alike.

    An Encouragement:
    Brothers and Sisters in Christ, PLEASE let your discussions reflect the love we are supposed to show one another.

    The Problem:
    The problem we all have, Calvinists and Arminians alike, is Pride . None of us likes to be wrong. Many of us, on both sides, get set in our ways and rely on our own presuppositions rather than read Scripture in its proper context and apply all the rules or practices of proper interpretation.

    When one of our presuppositions is proven to be wrong, by the Scriptures, we tend to mutate the Scriptures to fit our wounded presuppositions. We all do this.

    What We All Must Remember:
    As Christians, we must have our presuppositions formed by Scripture. We cannot form the Scripture to our presuppositions.

    The Solution:
    To fix this problem, I suggest dealing with small portions of Scripture in the following manner:
    • 1. Deal with the passage, not the person.
    • 2. Deal with the passage in its smaller context.
    • 3. Deal with the passage in light of the entire Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation.
    Hopefully, we will be able discuss these matters in a manner suiting Christians seeking to glorify the name of Christ.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
    #1 The Archangel, Jun 30, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2006
  2. Brother Bob

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    Thank you,
    I am working on it as for my part but I can only speak for myself. I had already decided to do so before this thread though. I find it much more relaxing. It is easy to let the personal remarks get to you and you begin to try to out do them on the remarks and forget about the Scriptures. I lately fell into this trap deeper but thanks to some advice of friends I decided to dig myself out of that hole. I don't have to resort to that kind of debating. Again, it easy for anyone to fall into the trap. I have never had a problem admitting my mistakes but sometimes it takes a few days before you realize you have fallen into something other than debating. Peace:praying:
     
  3. The Archangel

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    Ok, I have a question for the Arminians. If, as you have argued, faith is something we have, how are we saved apart from works?

    Question:
    If it is the case that faith is something inherent to us all and we exercise that faith to receive God’s grace, how is the exercise of faith not a work?

    Secondly, where in Scripture do you find this concept?

    Please read the post that started this thread and conduct yourselves accordingly.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  4. Brother Bob

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    You are asking someone who believes that you must believe, repent and be baptized. I hope that answers your question. Maybe I don't fit into the Arminiam camp, I don't know for sure what is the Arminiam doctrine but I do know what I believe. I believe the woman with the issue of blood had to move out on the belief that if she could only touch the hem of His garment she would be made whole. If she had never put her faith into action I for one do not believe she would of been made whole. peace:praise:

    The young man who asked what must I do to be saved and Jesus said thou knowest the Commandments? If the Commandments had not of been important the Lord would not of asked him. They will not give life but they sure teach you what sin is. Now the young man had done these things but the Lord said he lacketh one thing, sell all thou hath and give to the poor and come and follow me. Well the young man did not want to do those works so he never got the chance to receive the Grace of God that would of saved him. Peace again:Fish:
     
    #4 Brother Bob, Jun 30, 2006
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  5. James_Newman

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    What did she believe?
     
  6. Brother Bob

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    :wavey: If she could touch the hem of His garment she would be made whole according to the Scriptures. Bless
     
  7. James_Newman

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    So according to her faith, she had to touch the hem of his garment. What did Jesus say to the woman? Thy faith hath made thee whole. Another man had a servant that was sick and sent for Jesus to heal him, and then told Jesus not to come, but just to say the word and he knew it would be done. Jesus said He had not found so great faith in all of Israel. I think faith is one of the most misunderstood things in the bible, I doubt I understand it very well myself.
     
  8. Brother Bob

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    The man had come all the way to find the Lord didn't he?:Fish:

    Mark, chapter 5
    "25": And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,

    "26": And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,

    "27": When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.

    "28": For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.

    "29": And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.

    "30": And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?

    KJMatt.09

    "20": And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment:

    "21": For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole.

    "22": But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.:praise:

    KJMatt.08
    "5": And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him,
    "6": And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.

    "7": And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.

    "8": The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.

    "9": For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.:praise:
     
    #8 Brother Bob, Jun 30, 2006
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  9. Pipedude

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    That's a noble aspiration, but "the larger context of Scripture" is the theologian's strong tower. The perplexed runneth into it, and is safe.
     
  10. The Archangel

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    A further question:

    Acts 13:48 says: “And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed. (ESV) emphasis mine.

    It would seem that this is pointing to an appointment to eternal life. Who did the appointing?

    Here’s the problem: Many claim Faith is required, as a prerequisite, for God’s grace. I understand that mentality—I don’t agree with it—but I understand it.

    If it is the case, how, then, did God save Abraham? Joshua 24 clearly states that Abraham (Abram, at that time) was a worshiper of false gods.

    Joshua 24:2 says:
    2 And Joshua said to all the people, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘Long ago, your fathers lived beyond the Euphrates, Terah, the father of Abraham and of Nahor; and they served other gods.

    IF faith is a prerequisite for God’s grace, how did God give his grace to Abraham when Abraham clearly was not demonstrating faith?

    It would seem God took the initiative to make Abraham a believer.

    I’ll be interested to see the answers. Please remember, KEEP IT CIVIL.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  11. Brother Bob

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    7: By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.
    8: By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.

    Romans, chapter 4
    12: And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.
     
    #11 Brother Bob, Jul 1, 2006
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  12. The Archangel

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    Brother Bob, et al.

    Brother Bob,

    Your quote of Hebrews and Romans is appreciated. However, I’ll ask again, for your explanation of the passage in Joshua, and Hebrews and Romans for that matter.

    It would seem that the Hebrews passage is showing, in both cases, a response to God’s actions.

    When you look at the Joshua 24:2 passage in conjunction with the Hebrews 11 passage you see something clearly: Abraham responded, in faith, to God’s call. Abraham did not first have faith.

    Faith, then, is the human response to God’s call or God’s grace (however you choose to say it), it is not a prerequisite for God to show his grace.

    Do you agree? Why or why not. Please don’t just quote Scripture to me…Please argue you viewpoint from the Scriptures.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  13. Brother Bob

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    Archangel;
    I have never said it did not take the Spirit to stir up the mind of a person but I think that same Spirit strives with all men. Some of us choose to believe or have faith in Christ. If you notice Abraham had faith while he was still of the uncircumcism. I don't know if that means much or not but it caught my attention and was also put in the Scripture for a reason. I don't think Abraham or anyone else just all of a sudden decides to serve God. The Spirit is always there unless he has been turned over to a hardness of heart to believe a lie and be damned. I really believe that God made man in God's Sovereignity where man had this ability to choose. Now God knew that satan would be striving with man so He put it on an even balance and He also strives with man. God having made man with the ability to choose. I think Abraham chose at first to worship idol Gods but then decided he was tired of evil and turned to good. I hope that makes sense for that is what I did also. peace:praise:
     
  14. The Archangel

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    Brother Bob,

    You Said: “I really believe that God made man in God's Sovereignity where man had this ability to choose…God having made man with the ability to choose”

    Again, I understand this argument—I used to believe the same way. I think, however, that this position creates some Scriptural problems. For example: If , as you argue, man has the ability to choose why does Paul write:

    “None is righteous, no, not one;
    11 no one understands;
    no one seeks for God.
    12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
    no one does good,
    not even one.” (Romans 3:10-12 ESV)


    IF man has the ability to choose, it would seem whatever he can choose, he cannot choose God. Why? Because no one seeks for God.


    You Said: I think Abraham chose at first to worship idol Gods but then decided he was tired of evil and turned to good.

    What caused Abraham to turn to good? How and in what way did he learn of Yahweh? Did he seek an “unknown god” and find Yahweh? Or was it, like Joshua suggests, that God went and called Abraham and Abraham responded to God’s self-revelation?

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  15. Brother Bob

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    Because man does evil does not mean that the Spirit is not striving with him. They shall know me from the least unto the greatest.

    John, chapter 3
    "17": For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

    "18": He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    "19": And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

    "20": For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

    "21": But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

    The above Scripture proves a man can do either good or evil and how can he choose good and why? He does so because he had this God given choice and these two forces are striving with man. I can only tell you why I chose good. I got tired of evil, I looked around one day and saw I was losing everything I had including my health. I saw there were people who had a light about them and that light witnessed with that Spirit that was striving with me to do good. I decided then that was what I wanted and if I went down to a devil's hell it would not be because I was not praying to God.

    Abraham? I think he was probably the same way and felt inside of him what he was doing was going against a Spirit that was striving for him to do good so he also decided he would obey the Spirit of God instead of the spirit of the devil. peace :)
     
  16. Tom Butler

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    I'm not getting involved in the discussion right now, but there is a non-canonical writing called the Book of Jasher which answers your question.

    The Book of Jasher is mentioned twice in the Old Testament--Joshua 3:10 and II Samuel 1:18.

    Google the Book of Jasher and you'll find it.

    It tells us that Nimrod, Noah's grandson, the mighty hunter, became the powerful king of Shinar. By that time he was a pagan. The commander of Nimrod's armed forces was Terah, who fathered Abram at the age of 70.

    Astrologers saw signs in the sky at Abram's birth which they interpreted to mean doom for Nimrod, so the king ordered Abram killed. Terah saved Abram by substituting another dead child, and hid Abram's mother and nurse in a cave for ten years.

    At the end of the ten years, he came out of the cave. But Terah, not taking any chances, took him secretly to the house of Noah and Shem.

    Jasher 5 says :
    "And Abram was in Noah's house thirty nine years, and Abram knew the Lord from three days old, and he went in the ways of the Lord until the day of his death, as Noah and his son Shem had taught him;..."

    The book of Jasher has some credibility since it is mentioned in the Bible, twice, and obviously pre-dates either Joshua or II Samuel. It fills in many details not contained in the Scriptures, including the fact that Abram was once thrown into a fiery furnace and lived.

    A long answer to a short question, but the book is just fascinating..
     
    #16 Tom Butler, Jul 1, 2006
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  17. Brother Bob

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    Well Tom;
    It sounds interesting and whether it would stand the scrutinity of Bibical Scholars or not I don't know. Maybe it already has. If true it seems to me that at least Noah, wife and son had taught him to put his trust in God. Noah was a preacher of righteous.
     
  18. Tom Butler

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    Bro. Bob, the book of Jasher has been examined by many scholars, and found not worthy of being included in the canon.

    There are some minor discrepancies between the scriptural accounts and Jasher. And there are some things which are plainly not Biblical. But since it was cited in Joshua and II Samuel, it has some degree of credibility. Except, of course, where it doesn't square with the canon.

    I wouldn't bet the farm on the book of Jasher, but I'll guarantee you it is fascinating reading.
     
  19. Pipedude

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    Gentlemen:

    "The Book of Jasher" was mentioned in the OT. No one has seen it since.

    That which goes by the name today is a forgery, written as a hoax in the 18th century. It has nothing to do with the book mentioned in the OT.

    See http://answers.org/bible/jasher-book-of.html
     

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