Chicken or the Egg, Sin or Forgiveness?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Heavenly Pilgrim, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    It has been stated or implied that God is the Sole Cause of the universe, and as such everything subsequent to Himself is a direct result of His causation.

    Which did God cause first to come into existence? The sins or the forgiveness for the sins of the elect?
     
  2. David Lamb

    David Lamb
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    A tricky one to answer, because God is outside the confines of time and space. But I would say that although He knows the end from the beginning (so He knew there would be such a thing as sin for Him to forgive), from the human standpoint, He did not actually bring about the forgiveness until sin had happened.
     
  3. David Michael Harris

    David Michael Harris
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    Christ was the Lamb slain from before the foundations of the world.

    Also as Christians we were chosen in Him before the worlds foundation.

    To answer your question I would put the latter first.

    No eye has seen or ear heard what God HAS prepared for those that love Him.
     
  4. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: It seems to be our destiny to reason together, and I take that as a privilege.:)

    You bring another basic idea or possibility to the table, or so it would seem. You appear to be suggesting that God knew of something He was not the cause of. You speak of God “knowing there would be such a thing as sin for Him to forgive” but you stop short of presenting God as the cause of that which He knows. Now before I proceed, would you mind clarifying your position? Did and does God plan and orchestrate, i.e. ordain sin from eternity past to fulfill a plan He has set in motion, or is sin the results of something God foreknew but He is not the cause of?

    Many questions loom before my minds from your post. Can God foreknow what He is not the cause of? Could God create sentient beings that are truly first causes of their intents, and yet foreknow the outcome? Are men and other sentient beings honestly the first cause of their formed intents, sin being one of them, or is God the one and only Cause of all things in the universe?
     
  5. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: We are dealing primarily with the issue of sin. We are trying, or at least that was my intention in forming this thread, to determine the real cause of moral intents. If Christians were ‘chosen’ as you say before the foundations of the earth, does that mean to you that God was the direct cause of the intents formed that enabled them first to sin and then to believe?

    We are searching for the cause of sin and forgiveness, and trying to determine if in fact there exists in the universe any first cause(s) other than God. If God is the only first cause, your duty is to tell us which came first, His intents of salvation or His intents of creating sin. If you cannot tell us or say that we cannot determine that, that should clearly reveal to us your real position. Before I jump out there with wild speculation as to your beliefs, I will let you respond to the questions I am raising.
     
  6. David Lamb

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    I will gladly try to clarify. (I realise I was not very clear before). I don't understand God to be the cause of sin. I believe that Man (as first created, not now) had a will that was free. When he used that will to rebel against God with the first ever sin, he became a sinner. Not only so, but all his descendants became sinners too. (In other words, I believe the truism - is that the right word? - that we sin because we are sinners, rather than the other way round. I believe (I'm sure you do too) that God is omniscient, so He knew before ever He created anything, that Mankind would fall, and therefore He planned things to provide, at tremendous cost to Himself, salvation for sinners. But (to answer the OP) I was saying that though He planned salvation, including the forgiveness of sins, before the world began, the actual forgiveness did not come into effect until sin came into the world.

    I tend to tie myself up in verbal knots, so it is quite likely that I have not made things any clearer. If so, I apologise. Please let me know, and I will try again, as time permits.
     
  7. David Michael Harris

    David Michael Harris
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    Personally I do not believe that God is the author of sin.

    God being God knows all that He has decreed to be. ( From the outset )

    He also naturally knows what will come to pass if He does something.

    Like Create.

    He is before 'all things'.

    God is glorifying Himself.

    God bestows His Grace on whom He wills. ( He already knows )

    He is God we are not.

    Count your lucky stars.

    All will be over one day.

    Preach the Gospel and do not get stuck in Calvinism or Hyper Calvinism.

    Thank God for His Grace and produce some fruit 30, 60, 100

    What is so difficult about the message of the Bible I will never know.

    As to the nitty gritty...

    For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

    For just as you were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now receive mercy.

    For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God!

    How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! "For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?"

    "Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?" For from him and through him and to him are all things.

    To him be glory forever. Amen.
    (Rom 11:29-36)
     
  8. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: I appreciate your in depth response. Would it be safe to assume that you do not believe that God is the first cause of sin, but rather sentient beings He created are?

    If I follow you correctly, IF in fact you believe that man is a first cause of sin, you would only accredit Adam directly as a first cause, others simply sin as a natural result of necessitated generation. Am I right? My question to you would be concerning your definition of sin. Is or can sin be the mere product of natural generation or is it the results of the intents of the heart being formed in a manner consistent with selfishness as opposed to benevolence? Does sin indicate that one is a first cause of their intents or not? You seem to present sin as both, not either or. If sin is or can be the product of natural necessitated generation, is it within the realm of possibility that Adam was not in actuality a first cause of his sin either, but rather was only acting out as you indicate is the truth concerning all at least subsequent to Adam, i.e., out of compulsion due to being created as He obviously became, destined to sin and caused to be such by a force greater and outside of himself?

    Again, you seem to have two working definitions of sin. One, that which is the results of a choice of selfishness caused by being a first cause of ones intents, yet you redefine sin for all other men subsequent to Adam, and say that their sin is not the results of them being a first cause of their intents, but are simply acting out of compulsion due to the state or nature they are born with. Can sin be predicated where force or coercion exists? If so, why could it also be true that Adam was born in a state that he could have done no other than to sin, placing God or some other sentient being as the real first cause of his sin? Did not God foreknow exactly how Adam would act? Can God foreknow that which He is not the first cause of?
     
  9. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: Are we on the same page? Is the ‘author of’ and being the ‘first cause of ‘ one in the same? I would say yes, but I never know what others are thinking.



    HP: Does ‘decreed’ to you mean that God is the first cause of something, or can God foreknow without being the first cause something?



    HP: That is like saying that if God does something He knows it. That is not what is at stake here. We are dealing with sin which He obviously knows before it happen, for He planned for salvation from before the foundations of the world. The question is, is God the first cause of all things, or are we, as sentient beings, the first cause of our intents?

    You said that God is not the author of sin. I appreciate that answer. I believe you are correct in that assumption. I am trying to see just how consistent you and others are in that belief. Would you agree with me in that God is not the first cause of sin, but rather sentient moral beings are. Would you agree with me in that God can and does foreknow without being the first cause of the formed intents of sentient moral beings?

    Of a truth, how we perceive these issues will indeed have an effect on how we present the gospel.
     
  10. David Michael Harris

    David Michael Harris
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    :)

    Sin is basically disobedience to God. Now from that I can learn all I need to know about the relationship with regards, man and God.

    God is Holy.

    As to God not knowing something, well that brings a smile to my face.

    You do not have to go in depth with 2 paragraphs to understand something pretty basic with regards to the Christian faith.

    The problem is many people get involved with subjects that are not helpful to the Christian walk.

    If you want to get into some 'in depth' stuff join www.puritanboard.com/forum and get chasing your tail and then you can pat each others back on your great knowledge of things too deep for us to even begin to understand.

    I prefer just putting into practice 1 Corinthians 13 and other more practical Scriptures.

    David
     
    #10 David Michael Harris, Sep 22, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2007
  11. David Michael Harris

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    Now that has got my attention.

    I will be back in a bit as my dog has just come upstairs and told me it is time to be fed and taken for a walk.

    David
     
  12. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: Let me say at the beginning, that all of us put into practice our understanding of theology every day as we witness to others and lead our own lives. You are not alone on the practical side of acting out what is important. The issues at stake will indeed affect not only the way you view sin in your life, but in the way you present the gospel to others.

    You say that sin is disobedience, That is very good………………….depending on what you se as disobedience. If you believe that disobedience takes into effect all acts, whether chosen or are the results of coercion, we have a problem. If you limit disobedience to formed intents of the will by free moral agents, that is one thing. If you claim that our disobedience, such as David Lamb has alluded to, is simply the coerced results of being born a descendant of Adam, all real import of disobedience dissipates into nothing more than the necessitated results of force or coercion, the will and the forming of intents having not the least shred of freedom in them.

    If we as believers would spend more time in preparation and the understanding clearly of these issues, I believe God will honor that with more productivity and results in our efforts. Revivals in the past I believe bear that out. The closer we engage our hearts and minds to the truth, the more affect we should see in our witnessing. Bear in mind in the harvest of souls, that some sow, some tend, and some reap, but all are participating in the end harvest. :thumbs:
     
  13. David Michael Harris

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    It does not have to be very complicated.

    When we witness to people it is the Gospel we tell them not some deep theology because it is the Holy Spirit that ultimately saves people.

    And people are saved by basically looking up at the serpent that was lifted high, not understanding the properties of copper or bronze and it's carbon makeup and how atoms are formed and why they stick together.

    Grace brings us to Christ, lifted high, then Grace enables us to believe, bam, Salvation.

    The only disobedience that I know of with regards to God is transgressing Him.

    He tells us not to do something and we go ahead do the very thing we are told not to do.

    Take Adam, yes, in fact take Adam, the main cause of the human species problem. Understand Adam and you can grasp our predicament.

    People can write books on this but it is very simple. Adam had a choice, we in Adam do not.

    We cannot but sin. No excuse, we are vermin in our characters because of Adam.

    I am totally clear about what I believe.

    We are sinners, born as such and totally dependent on Grace.

    None of what you seek is of importance I think.
     

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