Does this indicate a choice?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by mets65, Jan 28, 2011.

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  1. mets65

    mets65
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    I mentioned this verse in another thread.

    Acts 7:51

    "You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did.


    Does this mean we can resist the Holy Spirits call to us? Although I don't know why anyone would. Or does it refer to resisting the Holy Spirit's call for our life? Either way I didn't think, according to some doctrines, that we had a choice in resisting the Holy Spirit. Also the verse states "just as your fathers did" so it's not just one group of people.
     
  2. preachinjesus

    preachinjesus
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    In Matthew 8:21 a man is called by Jesus to follow Him refused to follow but wanted to go bury his father.

    There are other examples where Jesus calls people who reject Him. The case for determinism falls apart in the pages of the New Testament.
     
  3. jbh28

    jbh28
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    Of course people can resist the Holy Spirit. Even those that get saved can resist the Holy Spirit before they are saved. btw, I believe in Irresistible Grace. ;)
     
  4. The Archangel

    The Archangel
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    Two comments:

    First of all, reformed theology, Doctrines of Grace, Calvinism, etc. are not "Deterministic." We who hold to this theology clearly state (though some choose to not listen): God fore-ordains the free actions of human beings for His purposes and for His glory.

    So, there is God "determining" things (as is His prerogative as God) and you have man freely acting. Yes, there is a tension. But the reformed theologian affirms both.

    The challenge here is that Stephen is not talking to a gentile rabble. He is talking to Jews. Remember the Jews were the ones to whom the mystery of God was revealed. So, they had been enlightened and, as such, were in a completely different state than Gentiles.

    So, to apply Steven's comments to the Jewish leaders to a Gentile context is to do violence to the text and to lead down a wrong road.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  5. Skandelon

    Skandelon
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    Allow me to press you a bit on this defense brother. Both Jews and Gentiles are born Totally Depraved, right? Both are thus totally unable to willingly believe the revelations of God, right? So, what does it matter if one group was privy to God's revelation and one was not? Please explain how their states differ and how that would affect the manner in which they can or cannot resist the Holy Spirit?
     
  6. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
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    Archangel,

    Some (as you) reformers recognize the tension of God's complete soveriegnty and the free will of man. However, there are many who do not.
     
  7. mets65

    mets65
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    I just don't understand, if the the Jews are God's chosen people how have they been resisting him for thousands of years?
     
  8. Robert Snow

    Robert Snow
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    People can resist the Holy Spirit because God gave us free will. Irresistible grace is not a biblical doctrine, regardless of what the Calvinist say. It is not found in the bible and goes against sound doctrine. I wouldn't attend a church that held to this gross error.
     
  9. jbh28

    jbh28
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    And I believe people can resist the Holy Spirit and I believe in the doctrine of Irresistible Grace. Irresistible grace doesn't teach that God cannot be resisted.
     
  10. Amy.G

    Amy.G
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    Because being "chosen" or "elected" doesn't always involve salvation. The Jews were God's chosen people to be the light of the world until Messiah came. They (the Nation) were the chosen vessel to bring forth the Savior.
    Now Jesus is the light of the world. He is the "chosen". We are chosen "in Him".
    The fact that Israel (nationally) were God's chosen people does not mean that every single Jew was saved and going to heaven. Every individual had to have faith and believe God (as Abraham did) to receive eternal life. His faith was accounted to him as righteousness. Just as we (Gentiles) believe in Christ and it is accounted to us as righteousness.
     
  11. Robert Snow

    Robert Snow
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    But, it does teach that people are saved regardless of what they do. It, along with other Calvinist doctrines, makes life nothing but a movie that is prearranged according to what you see as God's doing everything and making all the decisions. I think this is hogwash, as far as theology is concerned. It makes a mockery of God and all of creation. Thank God I attend a church where the pastor see the foolishness of such things!
     
  12. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
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    Jbh,

    You are going to have to enlighten me on this.
     
  13. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate
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    The Holy Spirit speaks to all men through God's word (Acts 28:25ff; 1Tim 4:1) but unless God opens their heart, they do not believe (ie. they resist Him. cf. John 10:26).

    Steve
     
    #13 Martin Marprelate, Jan 28, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2011
  14. Amy.G

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    So God's word doesn't really speak to those people does it.
     
  15. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate
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    Why would you think that?
     
  16. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
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    Amy it only speaks to "certain" ones, not everyone. I often get the criticism of "free will" being, "why did you decide....are you better than someone who didnt' decide"...Same goes for these "certain" ones as far as I am concerned.
     
  17. jbh28

    jbh28
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    What do you mean when you say that "people are saved regardless of what they do"? In a sense, that's correct. No matter how many evil things one has done, he can still be saved. One can live a terribly depraved life and be saved in his last moments.

    If you mean regardless of the choice they make, then you are incorrect(well you would be incorrect on the other as well). Calvinism doesn't teach that people don't have a choice. Calvinism is an explanation on why one chooses God over self. Irresistible grace is that all that God has chosen before the foundation of the world will come to him in due time. In other words, all the elect will be saved.
     
  18. jbh28

    jbh28
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    If irresistible grace meant that an elect person cannot resist God, then one would be saved as soon as they heard the gospel or they would never be saved. When you hear the gospel and are not saved, you have resisted God.

    Irresistible grace however is that while God can be resisted, after a time, all the elect will stop resisting God and come to him.

    This might be a better explanation...
    Calvinists do believe that men can resist the Holy Spirit. They believe that even the elect can resist the Holy Spirit, and do - but only up to the time when the Spirit regenerates their heart so that resist Him no more. The non-elect effectively resist Him all their lives.​
    http://www.oldtruth.com/calvinism/avoidingconfusion.html
     
  19. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast
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    this helps explain it
     
  20. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
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    So honestly then, ultimately the elect cannot resist if they eventually are destined to be a believer. From what you have described, resistance is seasonal or temporary, much like the Borg....Resistance is Futile.
     
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