Armenian view of Romans 9?

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Jesus is Lord, Feb 1, 2004.

  1. Jesus is Lord

    Jesus is Lord
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    I am not really through with this issue... over and over we read in the Word that man has a free will (to choose or to reject God etc). I would be very interested in an armenian view of Romans 9. There are passages like "So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy." (Romans 9:16) or "Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth." (Romans 9:18). That could confuse me... are there any "Armenians" (sorry for that categorizing)who can help me with this?

    Thanks for your time.

    God bless!
     
  2. massdak

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    i am not an arminian but here is how i believe they will try to answer that question. they will say that everyone pretty much who hears the gospel will be drawn and even when the Holy Spirit trys to reach them they can resist and it is because of some of these circumstances that God will harden them once they reject Christ enough as to make them a reprobate. but they will reason if you lived in the right family and grew up with godly grand mas and grand pas then you will probably believe and get saved at some point.this they believe ups your odds to getting saved.
     
  3. Yelsew

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    Since this is the way Paul would have expressed this passage, you must read it as thought and not just "verses". So, read it all, not just small parts. Then perhaps we can talk about the thought in an intelligent manner. You see, it is when you break up a whole thought into little pieces where you go wrong. It is Romans 9:14-24
     
  4. Bartholomew

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    Hi Jesus is Lord [​IMG]

    Here is a post I posted on a previous thread, which I think is very relevant to your question. That thread was talking about what the "it" of Romans 9:16 meant. After arguing that it meant "mercy", I wrote:
    ---
    Now, why doesn't that fit with Calvinism? Simple - because the passage isn't talking about individuals' salvation or damnation! I remember someone called Brother Bill who used to frequent this forum, who pointed out something very interesting that had sort of passed me by: the argument Paul was dealing with wasn't a Calvin/Aminius controversy, but one of "why has the gospel come to the gentiles, and the Jews been cast away?" This is the context of all of Romans 9-11. This passage (and the ones in the OT to which it alludes) tell us that God chose Isaac and not Ishmael to be the son through whom the promises were to be fulfilled. However, Abraham willed that it would be Esau. This promise or election is given in a national sense - whose descendents would fulfil the promise? It has nothing to do with either individual's predestination to salvation or damnation. The same applies to God's choice of Jacob over Esau - Isaac willed that Esau be chosen, but God chose Jacob. Esau even ran to get the venison so he could be blessed, but God still gave the promise to Jacob. So we see that:

    So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

    God chose to declare his name through the Jews. That was his choice. He could have done it through the Arabs - but he didn't. It didn't matter how much other people wanted him to do it differently, he did it his way. (To confirm that this is about God chosing groups to show forth his name, not individuals to salvation, see Gen 25:23 - "And the LORD said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger." The same sense of these being people groups is found in the other allusions to OT passages in this chapter).

    Now, Paul is telling us, God has chosen another group: believers, that include many gentiles (often called "the church", although I don't think the Bible actually refers to a "universal church"). And guess what? He's rejected Israel (in a national sense). And it doesn't matter how much the Jews complain, or tell God he shouldn't do it that way, or "will" or "run", God will "elect" or "have mercy on" believers, and will not deal with the Jewish nation (well, not at the moment). That is the message of not only the context of the few verses we've been quoting, but all of chapters 9-11. It has nothing to do with God chosing certain individuals to be saved and others to be damned. Indeed, it no more states that God chooses individuals to become believers, than it states that God chooses individual Gentiles to become Jews.

    God has elected, and chosen to have mercy on, one group; and he has rejected another group. But how one enters the former group is not given here. But it is given in the next chapter: "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."
    ---

    Does that help? [​IMG]
     
  5. massdak

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    but who opened their heart to attend to the gospel? you are forgetting who gives the increase here. does this help?
     
  6. Jesus is Lord

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    Baartholomew, thanks a lot [​IMG]

    Blessings.
     
  7. massdak

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    maybe your scripture should read

    So then it is not of the "group" that willeth, nor of the "group" that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy to the group.
     
  8. John Owen

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    Though not the Arminian view (or rather "an" Arminian view, as there is seldom a monolithic statement one could make concerning doctrine in which it would be correct to say Arminians all believe X) I have found the following author to be very informative on Romans 9. Check out http://www.desiringgod.org/library/topics/doctrines_grace/romans_9.html where he deals with exactly the verses Yelsew suggests, ie 14-24;
    and also see a book length treatment of Ro 9, proving individual election, in John Piper's excellent book entitled "The Justification of God; An Exegetical & Theological Study of Romans 9:1-23". I have to also suggest 2 commentaries that also say the passage speaks of individual election; Thomas Schreiner's commentary in the Baker Exegetical Series (ECNT); and also Douglas Moo's in the NICNT series, Moo states, in one section "Paul therefore argues in vv 6b-29 that belonging to God's true spiritual people has always been based on God's gracious and sovereign call and not ethnic identity. (putting to rest the idea of corporate election-Ken) Therefore God is free to "narrow" the apparent boundaries of election by choosing only some Jews to be saved (vv16-13; 27-29) (p569) Moo goes on to deal much more in-depth with the purveyors of coporate election in pps 571f. IMHO, one need go no further than these 3 skilled exegetes to put to rest coroprate election to the exclusion of individual election. Of course there are many other authors who address the issue, should you desire other authors, please let me know.

    Blessings
     
  9. massdak

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    not so fast with the "thanks a lot" maybe you need to see just what he is saying one more time
     
  10. Bartholomew

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    Why should it? It is saying that it doesn't matter what anyone thinks God should do, he will have mercy on whomever he likes. And as the passage makes clear, he chose to have mercy on the Jewish nation as descended from Abraham through Isaac through Jacob in the OT; and now he chooses to have mercy on the Jews who believe in Jesus (and also the gentiles who believe in Jesus). It doesn't matter who you or me or anyone else thinks he should have mercy on; it's his decision. And his decision is to chose that group of people who believe in his name!

    So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
     
  11. Bartholomew

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    Ah - it looks like I've got an extra "a" in my name... :D Glad I could be of service. [​IMG]
     
  12. massdak

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    Why should it? It is saying that it doesn't matter what anyone thinks God should do, he will have mercy on whomever he likes. And as the passage makes clear, he chose to have mercy on the Jewish nation as descended from Abraham through Isaac through Jacob in the OT; and now he chooses to have mercy on the Jews who believe in Jesus (and also the gentiles who believe in Jesus). It doesn't matter who you or me or anyone else thinks he should have mercy on; it's his decision. And his decision is to chose that group of people who believe in his name!

    So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
    </font>[/QUOTE]if you mean God is choosing a group based on the groups decision then you have the cart before the horses. it is God who grants repentance and He is the author and finisher of faith.
    also read john owens post, it covers this topic very well
     
  13. Bartholomew

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    NO! He is choosing the group according to his own will! He chose to bless the decscendents of Abraham. Why? He chose to grant the promise to the descendents of Isaac. Why? He chose to grant the promise to the descendents of Jacob. Why? And then he chose to grant that promise to the Jews who believed in Jesus. (Plus he also decided to graft Gentile believers in with them). Why? Why? WHY? He can chose whichever group he likes. Nothing to do with anyone's actions. BUT the passge doesn't address HOW people enter those groups! But other passages do!

    "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."

    If you think this has the cart before the horse, please deal with the text of Romans 9, which we are discussing in this thread.
     
  14. massdak

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    ok that seems to be clarified so then you see that Gods elect is by group and individual and that God is the one who chooses according to His good pleasure. if you agree with the scriptures that God is the one who opens a persons heart to the gospel and He is the one that draws His own and looses none.
     
  15. Bartholomew

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    Sorry - I'm not sure what you mean. I'm saying God chooses the group, but how one becomes part of that group is not really addressed in the chapter (except verse 32). However, I believe other bible passages teach that: one became part of the former group when conceived as a descendent of Jacob; and one becomes part of the latter group when one is born again. And since one must believe in order to be born again, and since I think many Bible passages say we have some choice in whether or not we believe, then we have some choice over whether we enter that second group. I know you don't agree with that idea, but (just to try and keep this sort of on-topic) do you think Romans 9 teaches something other than this?
     
  16. Yelsew

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    FAITH cometh by hearing, and HEARING by the word of God. If that is what you call being elected by God, then we agree. If it is not, then you need to go back to the scriptures....again and again and again!
     
  17. Skandelon

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    Bartholomew is right. I will add just a couple of points...

    Calvinists make their mistake with Romans 9 by:

    1. Thinking the term "shows mercy" must mean eternal salvation.

    Paul tells us toward the end of this discource on the issue of mercy that God shows mercy to EVERYONE.
    Does that mean all are saved? No, of course not, but all are shown mercy. How? By being offered grace eventhough all deserve damnation.

    2. Thinking "hardening" must mean eternal damnation.

    If you notice the same "group" (or even "individuals" if you rather) that are spoken of being hardened in chapter 9 are later spoken about possibly being saved in chapters 10 and 11.

    As Bartholomew has pointed out Paul is not speaking about salvation and damnation and thus he can't be addressing the issue of Calvinism versus Arminianism. Instead he is address the issue of the temporary judicial hardening of the Jewish nation in light of the ingrafting of the Gentiles, THROUGH FAITH IN CHRIST...the same faith, mind you, through which the Jews must be saved.

    I hope this helps. [​IMG]
     
  18. Ransom

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    Skandelon said:

    Calvinists make their mistake with Romans 9 by:
    1. Thinking the term "shows mercy" must mean eternal salvation.
    2. Thinking "hardening" must mean eternal damnation.


    Yeah, I can't understand how those silly Calvinists could make such a mistake. After all, it's not like Paul is discussing the issue of the salvation of the Jewish people in Romans 9-11, nor is it like part of his argument hinges on the fact that God has hardened many of them to the gospel.

    :rolleyes:

    The problem Romans 9 poses to Arminians is that they seem to lack the ability to understand each verse in context, specifically the context, as I said, of the question of Jewish salvation. The Jews were given all these advantages, the critic asks. How come they are not saved? Has God's word failed?

    No, the Arminians have to take Romans 9, blow it apart, and then interpret each of the little bits and pieces separately - so this bit deals with nations, that bit isn't about salvation, that fragment over there doesn't really say such and such, and so forth.

    What I want to see is an Arminian who will provide a complete and consistent exegesis of Romans 9 from start to finish, leaving nothing out and showing how it all fits together.

    Won't see it, though.
     
  19. Skandelon

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    Ransom,

    You failed to deal with my arguments. God shows mercy to all as Romans 11:32 clearly states. Showing mercy doesn't alway mean salvation will take place. In the same way, being hardened doesn't necessarily mean they won't be saved.

    Paul cannot therefore be speaking the "elect" and the "non-elect" as Calvinism defines these terms because he is not speaking about those who are saved and those who are condemned. He is clearly speaking about those who are shown mercy and those who are hardened. There is a difference and you have to acknowledge that difference. If you disagree then explain why instead of restating your position or changing the subject.
     
  20. Ransom

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    When you deal with Romans 9 front to back, in its own context, the I will deal with your arguments.

    As long as you are dealing with subatomic Romans 9 particles in isolation, you have no arguments.
     

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