Created perfection

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Terry_Herrington, Dec 23, 2002.

  1. Terry_Herrington

    Terry_Herrington
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    Here is a topic that has bothered me for many years. Since these questions could be construed as an attack on the very nature of God, don't write me off as a heretic.

    Christianity is based on the belief in a Supreme Being, we call God, who is all powerful and is able to do anything that is not against His own nature.

    Now God made man perfect and put him in a garden on the earth and allowed him to be tested by the Devil. Man failed the test and chose to sin against God.

    My questions are, Why was this perfect God not able to create a man who, of his own free will, would have chosen not to sin? Was this beyond God's possibility? Was Adam the best God could have done?
     
  2. Daniel David

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    Yes. God does everything for his own glory. He is completely omniscient. Adam sinning was a mere part of God's plan.
     
  3. JIMNSC

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    Genesis 1:31 says "Then God saw everything that He had made, and it was very good." That included Adam and Eve. The Hebrew word there for "good" is "towb" (2896) and means, good, pleasant, beautiful, excellent, lovely. And the Hebrew word for "very" can also be translated as exceedingly. So Adam and Eve were exceedingly good; in fact "perfect for God's plans," but that does not mean that they themselves were perfect. It is true, to start with, they had not sinned; however, that only shows that they were unblemished - in other words, exceedingly good. But perfect they were not.

    God can do anything, but had he created Adam perfect in the sense He himself was perfect, he would have created gods, would he not?

    Adam was not the best God "could have done" - Adam was the best he "did."

    A friend - Jim
     
  4. Sherrie

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    Jim
    That was excellent.

    Sherrie
     
  5. Helen

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    Jim, A perfect man does not mean that equals God. A perfect dog would not be a fish, and a perfect fern would not be anything else but a fern, right? A perfect man would still be simply a man.

    Terry, yes, God is sovereign, but there is something else He has allowed WITHIN His sovereign will that seems contradictory to it but isn't. He has allowed us to choose how to respond to Him. Yes, He knows, but that does not stop what we are allowed to choose.

    And there is a reason for that which, if we look at Jesus' words, becomes very clear. When asked what the greatest commandment is, Jesus gave it in two parts: love God and love your neighbor. Love is the commandment.

    Now, if love was natural to us, like eating and sleeping is, love would not have to be commanded. So love is not natural to us any more than obedience to any other commandment comes naturally -- they are all products of our conscious decisions regarding obedience.

    If love was programmed into us as a response, again, God would never have to say anything about it. In the same way, if love were impossible for us, commanding it would be ludicrous. One might as well command a worm to fly.

    So love is possible, but not natural. How, then, are we to obey this commandment? It has to be a matter of obedience, but how?

    Only through Christ. The character of God is defined by John as love. Christ fulfilled the commandments in and of Himself. This would include the commandment to love. And, just as we find that, when we are born again, we desire to obey God in the Ten Commandments, we will also find ourselves capable of really loving and obeying that command as well.

    But it is not obedience if we do not have a choice about obeying or disobeying. Obedience has to be either programmed in or impossible otherwise -- making all the commandments silly.

    And so God has truly given us free choice. Love is a choice. It is a decision we make regarding the welfare of another person if the object is a human being (or even some part of nature, for some), and regarding the upholding of a reputation if the object is God.

    No bride, with her father's gun at her groom's head, will ever be sure of the new husband's love. Love must be freely given. And so God has given us enough freedom to be able to obey that command when we appeal to Him -- come to Christ. But that very freedom is a guarantee that disobedience will happen. And that necessity -- that part of freedom which proves freedom -- was also known by God and taken care of in terms of answering it with redemption by Jesus Christ before we were created, as Revelation 13:8 says He is the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. It was a fact outside of time and worked out in time at the right time.

    God knew. But God allowed -- not caused -- sin, because there is no such thing as the freedom to love without that freedom. Love is not love if there is no choice. God did not have to love us. He did not have to save us. We are not necessary to Him.

    Creation in this way, however, was HIS choice so that, by giving us choices, we would be enabled to love. We could not love any other way, and love is what we were created for. It is in that reciprocated love, enabled by God Himself, that we are able to glorify Him, which is the other half of the reason for our creation.
     
  6. Johnv

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    Very good, Jim!!!

    Yes, very good, was not perfect, as God is perfect. It's perfect in the sense that it is part of God's plan.
     
  7. Me2

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    Right after God Commanded Adam Not to eat of the tree...

    Did you hear Adam Ask God, Whats death ?

    Adam didnt have a choice..and he didnt understand what the consequences were.
    He was innocent. neutral...

    He had no knowledge of good or evil.....

    (So did God delivered Adam to death via ignorance.?)
     
  8. Helen

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    Adam KNEW Good -- He knew God. It was evil that he did not yet know. It was obedience that was asked for, not knowledge.
     
  9. Paul of Eugene

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    We don't know how much Adam knew while he was yet unfallen. We are not in a position to be so sure the choice was unfair!
     
  10. Helen

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    Paul, Jesus said only God is [intrinsically] good. Therefore in knowing God, Adam and Eve knew good.
     
  11. Paul of Eugene

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    I go along with that. What's more, it is my opinion that God, in creating man with free will, was creating a good thing. But the free will of man, while a good thing, made possible a free choice to turn to the bad. If Adam had met the test, we would all be better off (THERE'S an understatement!) and it would still have been an example of freedom of choice.

    As for why didn't God make Adam unable to do anything but choose the right, well, He DID make lots of things that have no freedom of choice to go wrong. They're good, too! Planets, for example, have to stay in their orbits. Bees remain loyal to the hive and industriously make honey. And so forth.

    That's good. But I am grateful that God wanted also to create beings with freedom of choice, and took the "chance" that represented.
     
  12. Pastork

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    Helen,

    Could you explain what you mean by the term "free choice"?

    Pastork
     
  13. Helen

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    How can I be more clear than I was above?
     
  14. neal4christ

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    If God created Adam to chose not to sin then wouldn't He just be making a robot? This question does not make sense, because free will means you choose. But if God made Adam choose good, then it ceases to be a choice, but is instead a programmed response.

    By the way, I do think that God's initial creation was perfect. Just because Adam chose (and indeed Satan did first) to sin and mess it up is not God's fault. That does not mean that He is unable to keep them from sinning, but I think God wants a willful response to Him, not a forced one.

    Neal
     
  15. Me2

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    I see the experience in the garden as a first. Not whether adam was to, or was not to experience the consequences of the tree..which was described as the "disobedience of God"
    *But When.....*
    .....notice that We interpret the actions as an "act of Disobedience" as an explanation of what would occur when adam ate".

    _________________________

    But did you also notice....

    That creation was designed already to have entropy or decay to be a part of its design..
    ever notice seasons and seeds...
    there is a rest, or "little death" designed within them for the animal and plant kingdom.

    Adam introduced "spiritual enmity" between man and God.
    We can call it "spiritual death"..but physical death was already planned to occur..."inevitably".
    But concerning spiritual death, We would later discover that God himself would take that consequence so that no one would become permanantly be seperated from the father, but the Son as he promised to be the sacrifice for mankind and temporarily be delivered to death.

    But seriously...No One was ever planned to become inevitably and permanently spiritually dead ..Jesus would be the only person that would actually take on those Consequences..
    Temporarily...
    ___________________________

    Adam was only introducing something planned to occur already. and also a necessary part of his OWN NATURE..To allow him to discover his independence...all the while living under the dependence of Gods supply and rule. He had "free choice to discover the independence that God already planned on allowing him to have to.... "know self". But never any type of Choice to upsurp the plans of God. or to be permanently seperated from Gods presence.

    Not as a defiant choice to deny God, or to deny Gods nature or even His Existence . but a simple discovery of what mans nature already was designed to be.

    To become a complete man or continue along the path of becoming the image of God..It required discovering what and who man is. He's two natured..dependent and independent.

    And We Will Always Have Two Natures.....Always!

    His innate nature to gather for self, along with the spirit of God to share. Adam faced a decision to gather for self.. but when the gathering was to occur. and now having to face the subsequent consequences of additional changes that God planned when Adam began to choose for himself.......It would introduce seperation .The environment was being created.
    It was Planned all Along to be seperation between God and man.

    Now we are facing the constant struggle to know self and to know God..the two natures contained in one creation..Man.

    Gods methods of allowing Man to "Freely" choose to submit under a Lord is kind of hard to understand from the viewpoint of "independant nature". God is God and man will always be man.
    but we feels as though we are in control if a choice is presented.
    I dont blame adam...we all would have made the same choice...we're designed that way...

    So God designs us to become independent, but states...Well, when you do choose to discover your independent...Death will be introduced into your Life.....

    Look in your mirror...Dont feel sad that you are a sinner..You were designed to be one.
    a servant learning submission to another nature..one that has a will..and is equal and opposite to your independent side...thats the trick..Drawing that fine line between the two natures and acting accordingly.

    Its never fair to blame Adam. His situation was distinct compared with everyone elses.
    He WAS to introduce Seperation.. It should be God's explanation that we question...

    Me2
     
  16. Terry_Herrington

    Terry_Herrington
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    Me2,
    What????
     
  17. Me2

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    Like God Says..Try as Hard as you can...and Know that Im always with you...

    Adam is created with a independent nature, and a dependent nature..

    _____________________________________

    anyhow,.all that God "showed" Adam was good..no reference to anything
    even remotely "negative".

    any suggestion of anything "opposite" would have to consider a reference of similarity to what God previously showed Him. Everything was VERY GOOD.

    Me2
     
  18. Pastork

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    Helen,

    The reason I asked for more clarity regarding how you understand "free choice" is that I was not sure whether or not you would define it as often defined by Arminians. The common Arminian understanding appears to be that "free will" involves 'absolute power to contrary', i.e. the ability in each and every instance to have chosen otherwise than one actually has chosen. Is this what you mean when you speak of "free choice"?

    Pastork
     
  19. Helen

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    Hi Pastork,

    When people ask me about that, I respond that all my life I have wanted to fly. Not just in an airplane or glider - but really, really fly -- myself!

    I have been perfectly free to want that and perfectly helpless to do anything about it.

    Does that answer your question? The freedom to want is most certainly not the same as the ability to do anything about that want.

    Which, is, maybe, one of the reasons for the 10th Commandment, eh? Quit WANTING, you folks, and focus on the life your God has given you and wants to use!

    I'm too busy to think about flying much anymore, but every once in awhile, when we are on an overlook, admiring the view.... [​IMG]
     
  20. Artimaeus

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    Terry, you have your questions backward. God is the definitions of what is right. Instead of asking why God didn't live up to your definition of right and wrong, you should be asking what is wrong with your definition of right and wrong. You seem to think that if God had created a man who would not sin that that would have been better, therefore you think you are a better judge of right and wrong than God is. What God did was right and it is up to you to adjust your way of thinking, not the other way around. Nothing is beyond God's possibility, He does as He sees fit, right, perfect, and EXACTLY the way it ought to have been done. I once asked the folks at our church (I am not the pastor) "If you could be God for one day what would you do?" After listening to several answers about curing illnesses, world peace, loving your neighbor and other "good" things, I told them that if they were to do anything different than what God IS DOING then they would be wrong. God is the yardstick by which all right and wrong is measured. When comparing yardsticks, HIS wins every time. So, to answer your question, "Was Adam the best God could have done?" Yes, because to have done any differently would have meant He had not done His best in the first place. It is OK to have questions about God but it is not OK to question God. God doesn't live up to any standard except Himself.
     

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