A 'Loving' God Would Never...

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Monergist, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. Monergist

    Monergist
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    How many times have we seen an objection to Calvinism that goes something like this-- "A loving God (would/could) never elect some to go to heaven and leave others to go to hell..?" I've been trying to identify some presuppositions that under gird such an objection. Here's some that I've come up with:

    1. This objection presupposes that a 'Loving God' SHOULD never elect some and pass over others. Nowhere in scripture are we ever told that God 'Could Never' or 'Would Never' do such a thing; rather on numerous occasions we are told that is exactly what he does. For example:
    Rather than taking scripture at face value, this objection presupposes that we may take such phrases as "God is Love" and interject our own muddled understanding of 'love,' hence defining it by our own terms rather than scripture, and then attempt to set parameters on God by our own distorted definition of 'Love.' A Calvinist understands and accepts that 'God is Love' from scripture, but doesn't attempt to use an unbiblical definition of 'Love' to try and determine what a Loving God should do and not do.

    2. This objection presupposes that we are somehow special; that God is somehow obligated to view and treat us differently than the people whose lives were recorded in scripture. God could hate one son of Isaac and love the other before they were ever born, but He could never treat our children this way. He could choose to treat his chosen people one way in OT times and set special affection on them, but perish the thought of Him not loving everyone equally today-- after all, we deserve far better. Which leads to--

    3. This objection presupposes that God is not one who "changeth not." He can tell Moses that He can "have mercy on whomever he will" but today He has too offer the same chance to everybody. If He doesn't, then He isn't 'Loving.'

    4. This objection presupposes that 'Love' is God's main attribute (rather than His Holiness). I want to be careful here, because what I say may be easily misunderstood or distorted. I am not denying that God is Love; but I am saying that Love is defined in terms of His utter and complete Holiness. The Love of God is a Holy Love. This Holy God justly hates sin (and the wicked).

    5. This objection presupposes that we may object to any action of God that offends our sensibilities. Just like liberals do with denying the doctrine of eternal punishment—“A Loving God would never damn people to eternal fiery torment”—they say. Some supposed “free-will” is the only ground on which we have to stand—even as it crumbles beneath our feet. Our ‘god’ becomes some kind of wax nose, an idol, that we can mould and shape to our own liking.

    6. This objection presupposes that we have the right to accuse God with “Why have you made me thus?” Our creator does not have the right to make an object for useful purposes and another for destruction. So there is no potter and there is no clay; unless that is, of our own free-will we give the potter permission to mold us…and then He is only free to work in accordance with our own desires.

    7. This objection presupposes that God ‘owes’ us something. We have our rights. We have the right to choose to obey or disobey, to reject or accept. We will not put up with any denial of our rights. For God to make decisions for us would be an infringement on our rights, and a ‘Loving God’ would never do that.

    8. This objection presupposes that God is not just. Nor wise. Nor good. Any attack on His ‘Love’ as far as it concerns an attack on the doctrines of election, reprobation and predestination is in reality an attack on His justice, wisdom or goodness. God declares that he is just and that He has chosen His elect apart from any goodness in them. This objection insists that this cannot be so, that it would be injustice. He says that he is wise and that chooses according to His own good pleasure. It insists that would be folly. He declares that He is good, and gives mercy to whom He wills and hardens the rest. It insists that would make Him despicable, one to be despised and rejected rather than loved and obeyed.
     
  2. Johnv

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    Well, a loving God would never forbid a person from making his/her own choices, which kinda refutes criticsm of election. I think the "A loving God would never..." statement is quite subjective, and typically not a good scriptural arguement at all.

    But hey, some people say "a loving God would never let spouses have just a few children". So go figure.
     
  3. dianetavegia

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    And we have a God who Loved Us All so much that

    John 3:14b .. even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 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.
     
  4. OldRegular

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    John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

    Since men love darkness rather than light why and how do they come to the knowledge of the truth?
     
  5. Frogman

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    Because God said, I have loved you with an everlasting love.

    And, I have drawn you in lovingkindness, which if I am not mistaken, will bear out with the cords of a man, the only mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus.

    Yea, He has loved us with an everlasting love; He has drawn us to himself in lovingkindness; if not, we (me, myself) yet remain outside this everlasting love, and what am I to answer against God?

    Bro. Dallas
     
  6. BobRyan

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    Ok - the Calvinist future scenario is DEFINITELY going HERE!

    First let me point out that NO TEXT says that God HATED Esau before he was born!

    NO TEXT says God HATED Esau while Esau was living!

    THE ONLY text we have on God's view of Esau BEFORE he was born - was that his TWIN BROTHER would be given the dominant role!

    But in reality it was ESAU that inherited ALL the family wealth! Jacob got NONE!

    FAR from this being a statement about ESAU it is a statement about the NATION that descended FROM Esau. A nation that chose to live in rebellion against God. AND ONLY after centuries of rebellion was to experience the wrath of God!

    So much the Calvinist myth that point 2. above promotes.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  7. BobRyan

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    Which leads to the Calvinist future scenario!!

    To reference the Basic Calvinist future Scenario “posted” with details “ignored” by Calvinists ON a thread about God not loving the lost

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/35/1543/2.html#000015

    Where the "cold heartless disconcern for the lost" so "necessary to Calvinism" is put on hold for just a split second.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. BobRyan

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    The winding twisting logic of the OP ignores the "real problem".

    It ignores the fact that GOD HIMSELF says HE LOVES the WORLD and provides Christ as the Atoning Sacrifice "FOR the sins of the whole WORLD".

    MORE Than that it says "HE is not willing that ANY should perish"!!

    MORE Than that it says HE WEEPS over the case of the lost!!

    (Knowing who the texts of a loving God weeping over the lost may not please Calvinists - I hesistate to KEEP ON posting that same lists of texts... So here is a recent link...


    The Grieving God post was recently posted on the BB board here –
    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/35/1540/2.html#000023

    )


    By ignoring, twisting, downsizing and redefining all the grand claims of God IN SCRIPTURE Calvinism ends up with ONLY the musings of the OP to confront and challenge its traditions.

    Why not just accept scripture instead??!

    IN Christ,

    Bob

    [ August 01, 2005, 06:38 PM: Message edited by: BobRyan ]
     
  9. whatever

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    Bob likes to play Twister.
    The Holy Spirit disagrees with Bob.
     
  10. whetstone

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    Bob thinks Esau is referring to Edom tho. so there's his escape route.
     
  11. whatever

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    Yeah, I know. That's why he doesn't like to post the passage within its context, which clearly shows that 'Esau I hated' refers to God's sovereign choice of Jacob instead of Esau before either was born.
     
  12. Frogman

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    Bob,
    What part of the resurrected redemmed will not awake in the likness of Christ?

    Bro. Dallas
     
  13. webdog

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    John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

    Since men love darkness rather than light why and how do they come to the knowledge of the truth?
    </font>[/QUOTE]Through the drawing (all men) of the Holy Spirit.
     
  14. TexasSky

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    There are logic problems with Calvinism.

    They teach that man has fallen so far into sin he cannot even hear God calling to him. Yet, you also teach, that God "preselects" who will "be allowed to respond to the call." Either you can hear the Holy Spirit or you can't. Either He calls to all (God's word says He does), and some respond positively and some respond negatively - or He doesn't (again - the bible says He Does.)

    Also, why didn't God ever state this in the beginning of time or during Christ's ministry? When Adam sinned, God tells Adam a LOT of consequences - He doesn't say, "You can no longer hear my call or respond to me or fellowship with me." Why not? If you're right? Why not list the greatest consequence of all?

    Christ doesn't mention it either. He speaks about loving everyone, about forgiveness, about saving the sinners.

    I know the voices about "my sheep hear my voice," are used often by Cavlinists, but I think you are reading it wrong. Maybe its because I grew up spending weekends on my Uncle's ranch - but what you people understand just - isn't how I've ever understood that verse. You apparently read, "You respond to my voice because you belong to me."

    I read it, "You belong to me because you responded to my voice."

    It fits the animal analogy too. We have a cat that is supposedly my daughter's. The cat, however, believes she is my daughter's father's. She ignores my daughter about 1/2 the time, and always responds to her REAL Master.
     
  15. Johnv

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    There are logic problems with Arminianism as well. Yet, both Calvinism and Arminiamism are some scriptural support as a basis.

    What it comes down to is that Calvinism and Arminiamisn, when exclusive of the other, are extreme views. The scriptural truth is likely sonewhere in the middle. Where in the middle that is, I don't know. And, frankly, I don't much care. The C/A issues are not issues pertinent to our salvation, the Great Commission, morality, or how to live our daily Christian lives.
     
  16. Andy T.

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    Kinda like that Bible verse that says, "He loves us because we first loved Him."
     
  17. rc

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    Yeah... I like this one also
    "Your not my sheep because you don't believe me"
     
  18. rc

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    I couldn't disagree more. Not necessarily with salvation BUT our theology GREATLY molds our view and understanding of God, which will control the way we witness and how we live our lives.

    Bad theology dishonors God and hurts people....

    -J.I. Packer -

    It shapes how the gospel is represented to the lost i.e.

    What will you do with Jesus? Jesus loves you and just come to him, he'll take you just the way you are!

    verses...
    What will the Lord Christ Jesus do with you!

    Repent! Change your worldly ways and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. You have broken the law of the King and damnation is awaiting those who will not repent! Now is the day of salvation!

    Those with the former tend to have a different walk than those (though not all) of the latter also. Many have a God as their "daddy" and "bud" who wants to hold hands and be their friend and "frowns" at sin....

    Many have a God who is the King, one who holds their destiny in His almighty, sovereign hand. One who hates sin, loves Holiness. One who calls His to be Holy and diligent, one to look upon His power and majesty for 100% of every work in their lives past and future.

    So I have to disagree. The "C" tree and the "A" tree bear different understandings which will bear different fruit.
     
  19. whatever

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    Again, you have it wrong. It is not as difficult as you make it. None can respond on their own. "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him." God enables some to respond, and then they respond. "But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ ..."

    It is all over the Bible. It is what "you shall surely die" means.

    Jesus did say it too. "I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father's name bear witness about me, but you do not believe because you are not part of my flock. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me." Why did they not believe? Because they were not part of Christ's flock. Not the other way around. It is not reasonable to turn it around just because it fits better with what you already think.
     
  20. webdog

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    Where in the Bible is it taught that God only draws some? That only some are enabled to respond? It doesn't. The Holy Spirit draws ALL men, not all "kinds" of men.
     

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