Calvinist Question: Did Satan Have A Choice?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by TaliOrlando, Jun 24, 2009.

  1. TaliOrlando

    TaliOrlando
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    :1_grouphug:

    God Bless...

    This is an honest question, I would ask my 2 calvinist friends but they are upset at me because I believe salvation is available to all and dont answer this one.

    So, an honest question to Calvinist.

    If you believe that all is predestined, that everything that has happened Good or Evil was decreed by God and that we are not in this present condition because we disobeyed God but rather because God decreed it to happen; Did Satan Have A Choice? Did The Angels Have A Choice To Rebell?

    If they did have a choice to either obey or disobey God's will, then why dont we?
     
    #1 TaliOrlando, Jun 24, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 24, 2009
  2. Samuel Owen

    Samuel Owen
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    Predestination can sometimes become confusing. If God did indeed decree satan's fall, that would make God the originator of sin. Since God is not the originator of sin, he allowed satan to fall. Did God know satan would rebel beforehand; yes. But God did not decree it, God allowed it. So in effect although God knew satan would rebel beforehand he still allowed it, this makes it satan's choice. Satan could have chosen not to rebel, and God would not have prevented that either. But since God allowed satan to rebel, knowing he would, God predestined it. Or in effect, nothing happens without Gods foreknowledge. So everything that happens is already predestined (known and allowed) to happen.

    So is Salvation made available to everyone; yes. But only those for-known (predestined), to accept will accept. This still makes Salvation in effect freewill, but allowed God to enter the names into the book of life; before the foundations of the world were laid. That means all the names that will be in the book, are already in there, and no more will be added.

    This is by far not!! the best explanation, but its about the best I can do, at least right now.
     
  3. TaliOrlando

    TaliOrlando
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    I think you did awesome.... :)

    See, what I dont get is why do my 2 friends say that God made certain main for hell and certain men for heaven. The ones he made for hell, he did this for his glory because he is sovreign and can do whatever he wants regardless and it pleased him to make some men and not give them a chance at repentance...
     
  4. Samuel Owen

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    To foreknow it to predetermine. To allow that which is foreknown to happen, you have predestined it to happen. So some men are predestined to Hell, since God will allow it. And some are predestined to Heaven, since God also allows that choice.

    Again to say God purposefully created some men to sin, and go to Hell, would make God the originator of sin. Since God is not, and cannot be the originator of sin, he predestined men to their own choice, not forcing anyone but allowing each his own choice.

    Since some will not choose the right, no amount of preaching or proclaiming the Gospel to them, will change that. God has predetermined to allow them that choice, and will not change it. This is predestination. This is something known only to God, otherwise we could go about culling those who preaching to would be useless. But since we have no way of knowing, we determine men's choice to be made of their freewill, but in actuality it is not. It has already been predestined by God who will be saved, and who will not. He already knows this, and can determine which are the bad vessels, and which are the good.

    So in the end its not what you do good or bad. Salvation is based on Gods choosing to allow you, your predetermined will, and will not change it.
     
  5. billwald

    billwald
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    John 8:44
    Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

    Infers Satan was created a liar?
     
  6. RAdam

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    God didn't predestinate anyone to hell. Notice in Romans 9 that he afore prepared unto glory the vessels of mercy, but that he endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath. Adam chose to rebel against God, he was our representative, thus we all fell when he fell in Eden. By the offence of one judgement came upon all men to condemnation, and justly. We didn't need God to predestinate us to hell, we put ourselves in this spot. We did, however, need God to save us from such a condition. Notice that the only times predestination is mentioned in the bible it is connected to His people and not the wicked.

    Now, about John 8:44, what does Christ mean by beginning. Obviously not when Satan was created because God declared His entire creation good and very good.
     
  7. Samuel Owen

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    No it infers satan was created with choice, he chose from the beginning to lie. To say God created a liar, again would make God the author of sin. God only created satan with the ability to choose to lie, so satan chose to lie, and God allowed it. So satan was predestined, from the beginning to be a liar.

    All this being! in the foreknowledge of God. "Predestination"
     
  8. Jim1999

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    Before the Fall, did Adam and Eve have a choice? Satan is a fallen angel created before Adam and Eve and he was not subject to the Fall. There is a difference between humanity and the angelic realm.

    It is obvious from some replies that there is a lack of understanding of both foreknowledge (a natural attribute of God) and predestination.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  9. Samuel Owen

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    I wouldn't doubt it, I don't claim to be expert on such things. :)
     
  10. RAdam

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    I think a good section of scripture on this issue is Ezekiel 28:11 forward. Here, God is speaking to the king of Tyre, who I believe is a type of Satan. He says, "Thou sealest the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. Thou are the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behond thee. thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of they traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee. All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more."

    Lengthy, but informative.
     
  11. Tom Butler

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    When approaching the subject of God's sovereignty and man's will, I have found that humility is an appropriate attitude for me to take.

    Someone asked an old preacher one time about how to resolve God's sovereignty and man's will. He replied, "Wal, I didn't know they'd had a fallin' out."

    I think they can be resolved, and I believe Calvinism provides the best explanation.

    That said, I have to admit that I would love to sit at Jesus feet for a couple of hundred years and get all my questions answered.

    I believe God choose those whom he will save, and will illuminate, convict, regenerate, call and justify them. But on what basis does he choose. I know the standard answer--according to the counsel of his will--but I"d surely like to know more than that, wouldn't you.

    Some will appeal to foreknowledge (Acts 2:23, for instance)--defining it as God's knowing the actions and responses of individuals in advance and choosing according to their choices. To me that makes God less than sovereign (although I know many will disagree)

    But that same verse also speaks of the "determinate counsel of God." Luke says it was that determinate counsel by which wicked hand crucified and killed Jesus.

    Determinate counsel sounds to me like God planned the circumstances by which Jesus would die--yet the hands that did it were wicked, therefore responsible. Yet that same verse says that Jesus was delivered to those wicked hands by God himself, according to his foreknowledge and determinate counsel.

    I have to tell you, I don't know how that works. But I believe the scriptures, that God is sovereign; that Jesus was slain in the mind of the Father and the Son from the foundation of the world; that it would not have happened had God not wanted it to happen; that he determined that it would happen at the hands of wicked people; that these wicked people did it because of wicked desires; they wanted to do it.

    When we all get together around the Throne someday, the rest of you, back off. I've got a bunch of questions. The first 200 years are mine.
     
  12. Samuel Owen

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    Things like this! will probably be the least of our thoughts then. :)
     
  13. TaliOrlando

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    This is an awesome discussion!

    If I may ask, why would it make God less sovereign by him giving man 2 choices... His way or Hell ? Choose me and live and don't choose me and perish.

    Why would this make God less sovereign?

    God Bless!

    Tali
     
  14. Jim1999

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    Simply because it is attributing to humans a will at least as powerful as God's/ Hence man's will comes under the Permissive Will of God and not as an absolute separate entity.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. TaliOrlando

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    If I may ask brother Jim; do you believe God created some for hell without allowing them even an opportunity towards repentance?

    Also, if it is God giving the choice... notice that the choice is his.... its his Glory. Man wouldnt have that choice if God woudlnt give it.... I believe Salvation is a free gift. You cannot force a gift on a person.... so how is allowing man a free gift of choosing Salvation or Choosing hell not glorying to God.. I just dont see it...
     
  16. Jim1999

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    First off, man is destined for hell as a result of Adam's sin and condemnation. So, man is already destined for hell, separation from God.

    God made a provision for some, called the elect. Why? I don't know, but scripture makes this clear. The elect were chosen in God before the foundation of the earth. The remainder were simly passed by. Ten people stand in lne to receive a gift I am offering. I give the gift to five people. I don't reject the other 5, I simply pass by them as I select the other five. They had no claim on the gift. That was mine to give.

    We tend to view God in our time element, longitudinal, when in fact His realm is infinitive, without beginning or end. Hence, He knows the end from the beginning and before that in our time spans.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
    #16 Jim1999, Jun 25, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2009
  17. Tom Butler

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    Jim1999 gave a good answer. I understand the view that man must have free will, therefore God gives it to him, while retaining his sovereignty. But let's imagine that God put it this way: "I want your will to be free with regard to accepting Jesus as Savior; so I will allow you to thwart my will." I will veil my sovereignty. I will let you die and go to Hell before I'll mess with your free will."

    One might respond, "wait a minute. It's not that God can't over-ride your will. It's that he won't." But in doing so, has not God limited his sovereignty? It seems that we would have an all-powerful God who's not quite all powerful. Can an omnipotent God ever be less than omnipotent and still be called omnipotent?

    Would we have the same God about whom it is said:

    All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing,
    But He does according to His will in the host of heaven
    And among the inhabitants of earth;
    And (no one can ward off his hand
    Or say to Him, "what have you done?" (Dan 4:35)

    Okay, you might ask, "what's the difference between God's permissive will Jim mentioned, and God's allowing man the free will to make moral choices?" I see one big difference. God's permissive will is selective. He permits what he will permit and nothing more. The free will view is not selective. Under it, God may not limit man's will in any way.

    Just something to chew on.
     
  18. webdog

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    So...since God allowed Adam to name the animals, and He then called them what Adam named them...man is at least as powerful as God? Your reasoning is faulty...
     
  19. Allan

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    One thing you might want to consider here. Calvinists do not believe that men are not free to choose. That is a misnomer.

    They believe whole heartedly (unless they are hyper-calvinists) that all men freely choose God or reject God. The distinction is that some men God will not give himself to that they might be saved. Now to understand this better you must understand those whom He 'does' give himself to.

    Those whom God desires to save will not be unless God first regenerates these people ( that being to justifies and sanctifies, and indwells them with His Spirit- makning a new life in which the old is passed away) . That being they will not ever desire Him and thus never choose Him freely.

    At the same time, those whom He regenerates (makes them in Christ and thus alive) these now with their 'new' nature will only choose to believe God and be saved. Therefore regeneration precedes faith and they do so freely of their choice.

    Thus even to the Calvinist man chooses freely. (This is the mainline view but there is another as well in Reformed thought)

    There are many Calvinists who do not hold to the Regeneration preceding faith (men like Millard Erickson of Systematic Theology and Wayne Grudem of Systematic Theology and others) and these men hold to faith precedes regeneration (or new life in Christ). I hold to this view and if you look at the threads I have created you will see two of them on the subject, and you can read about 'my point as to why' faith precedes regeneration, there.

    There is also a group of Calvinists/Reformed called 'Amyraldism' who do not hold to Limited Atonement but to Unlimited or better General Atonement. This group often tends to go with faith preceding regeneration but it is not restricted to this group alone. As I said there are many Calvinists who hold to this view that are stanch 5 pointers as well - such as the respected Millard Erickson.

    Hope this helps somewhat.
     
    #19 Allan, Jun 25, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2009
  20. Tom Butler

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    Allan, you are sump'n else. Or maybe your just really sump'n. Either way, you are a rarity--a non-Calvinist who accurately portrays Calvinism. Thank you.
     

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