Fatalism and the Westminster Confession

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Ben Elohim, Feb 25, 2005.

  1. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
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    Calvinists also do not like to be accused of believing in Fatalism which by definition is "the philosophical doctrine holding that all events are predestined to happen and that human beings cannot therefore change their destinies" even though they themselves believe that all events are predestined to happen and that human beings cannot therefore change their destinies.

    Well many Calvinists seem to have an idea that it is fatalism when "the gods do it" but it is not fatalism when "God does it." How that becomes non-fatalistic is anyone's guess.

    "God from all eternity did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass yet so, as thereby neither is God the author of sin... (Westminster Confession, Of God's Eternal Decree, III.1).

    Got some interesting questions ferya:

    1. Did God, before creation, ordain Catholic priests to abuse little boys?

    2. If God ordained this heinous sin, could the Catholic priests have done otherwise?

    3. If God ordained this heinous sin to happen, and this heinous sin had to happen because God ordained it to happen, how is God not the author of sin?
     
  2. Wes Outwest

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    If God ordained it for Catholic priests, then why don't all catholic priests do it?
     
  3. Ben Elohim

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    We are referring to the Catholic priests who abused little children. Let us clarify this for you:

    1. Did God, before creation, ordain certain Catholic priests to abuse little boys?

    2. If God ordained this heinous sin, could the these Catholic priests have done otherwise?

    3. If God ordained this heinous sin to happen, and this heinous sin had to happen because God ordained it to happen, how is God not the author of sin?
     
  4. Ben Elohim

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    And add one more question to the above three:

    4. If God willed to ordain everything that happens just as it happens, who then is NOT doing his will?
     
  5. russell55

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    God decided (ordained), before time began, that he would not stop certain priest from abusing little boys. He decided that he would permit those certain priest in those certain circumstances to carry out the plans of their evil hearts.

    God's ordaination of an act makes it certain, but not necessary. So when any particular priest reaches the point where he is going to decide whether to sin in that way or not, both of the options--to sin or to not sin--are still open to him. There's only one option he will choose, but both options are still available to him up until the point that he actually chooses. God's ordaination of an act doesn't compel that act.

    God isn't the author of sin because God ordains sinful acts by way of permission. He doesn't actively work to make it happen. It is not done by his agency, but by the agency of the priest who commits the sin. The heinous sin happened under the power of the an evil heart that decided to fulfill the desires of it's flesh and of it's mind. The motivation behind the act is the priest's own. The heart that desired evil is the priest's own.

    It depends on what you mean by God's will. If by it you mean God's plan for how the history of the world would play out, then everyone is carrying out that plan in everything they do. God is always working all things according to his plan--doing as he plans among the inhabitants of the earth.

    If by God's will you mean his moral code--the righeous way he commands all people to behave--then every time someone sins, they are going against his will.
     
  6. Ben Elohim

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    God decided (ordained), before time began, that he would not stop certain priest from abusing little boys. He decided that he would permit those certain priest in those certain circumstances to carry out the plans of their evil hearts.</font>[/QUOTE]And how did this work pray tell? Did God "look down the corridor of time" and decide he would not stop these Catholic priests from doing this?

    OR, did God decide to create a blueprint where this event would exist and in this way ordained it to occur?

    In other words, why would God need to "stop" or not "stop" something that he preordained to occur in the first place?

    Put yet another way, it sounds like you are saying that God would not step in during a point in later time to stop something he previously ordained to happen.

    And put yet another way, it appears you are saying God will not later change what he already ordained to occur? Correct?
     
  7. ILUVLIGHT

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    Hi Russel 55;
    God may have allowed sin into the world, but I don't believe He ever approved of any of it. I don't think I would be so presumptuous as to say that God ever approved of sin knowing someday you'll have to stand before Him and give an account. You do realize your calling God a sinner?
    May Christ Shine His Light On Us All;
    Mike [​IMG]
     
  8. johnp.

    johnp.
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    ILUVLIGHT.
    1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

    Forgiveness of sins is ever present for those that ask for it. :cool:

    johnp.
     
  9. johnp.

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  10. Ben Elohim

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    1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

    Forgiveness of sins is ever present for those that ask for it. :cool:

    johnp.
    </font>[/QUOTE]UM, are all your sins forgiven yet or not?
     
  11. ILUVLIGHT

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    Hi JohnP;
    Before you think you have found the answer to fear take a real good look at this;

    Pro 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

    Pro 9:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

    Psa 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth forever.

    Do you really think that this one verse is saying we don't have to have fear of the Lord God almighty. If I were you I'd go back and find out what Paul is talking about. Only a fool doesn't have any fear of God. The wages of sin is still death.
    Yes JohnP and it is fear that motivates men to seek forgiveness for there sins not Love. It's fear of consequinces. Why do you think Christ told so many to go and sin no more.
    Calvinist believe they are saved even if they never confess Jesus Christ. Salvation is conditional. Live with it.
    May Christ Shine His Light On Us All;
    Mike [​IMG]
     
  12. russell55

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    God has a plan for history. Is that what you mean by blueprint? This event is in his plan for history, but it is there by way of permisssion. It is a permitted event rather than a directly caused event.

    If he stopped it, then it wouldn't occur would it? If he doesn't stop it, it will. Ordained events still take place by way of means. Sinful events take place by means of the actions of sinful men motivated by their sinful hearts and God's decision not to restrain those particular actions.

    I'm not sure I can really answer this question because I don't think I understand it. God restrains sin all the time. Men have evil plans that God thwarts because he chose not to let those things happen.
     
  13. russell55

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    I didn't say He approved it. I said he had it in his plan for human history (or he ordained it). Ordaining (in the theological definition of the word) and approving of something are different things. Ordaining means that God says that's what's going to happen, and so that's what happens. No evil act is approved by God, but it is part of what he said is going to happen. If he had not said it was going to happen, then it wouldn't happen, because even evil acts can only occur as God allows them to occur.
     
  14. Ben Elohim

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    So then did the event occur because God ordained a creation reality where the event MUST occur? Yes or No.
     
  15. johnp.

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    Ben.

    Yes Ben all my sins are forgiven.

    Yet there are times I fall into forgetfulness. When that happens I get the feeling that there is a problem. When I get that feeling I realise that my faith has shutdown and I switch it on again by remembering that Christ died for my sins.

    Easy-peasy. Many times a day. But when I consider the Judgement Day I look forward to it always. I don't fancy dying though. I trust Jesus will give me the grace I need to keep my chin up. I want to be one that does not die! :cool: And the way things are shaping up I'm in with a shot. I am weak as any other man. But my God is Sovereign.

    johnp.
     
  16. johnp.

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    Hello ILUVLIGHT.

    As I said in the post to Ben and;

    The fear of the Lord is the beginning of salvation which you will do well to bear in mind. Wisdom is Jesus Christ who fools despise.
    That is what the verses say man! We don't love we selfpreserve. God scares the Hell out of some not all.
    I am saved. My fear is gone.
    My sins forgiven. I fear no evil.
    And I mean forgiven in the sense that is, forgiven. Forgiven. I don't owe Him nothing! :cool: But an obligation to return such kindness and mercy and compassion. There but for the grace of God go you.
    Because He is a spoil sport!. :cool:
    There is a profound conflict in that statement. You won't live with conditional salvation.

    johnp.
     
  17. russell55

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    I have not idea what you mean by &lt;i&gt;creation reality&lt;/i&gt;, so I'm answering your question as if the phrase isn't there.

    If you mean by MUST that it occurs &lt;i&gt;necessarily&lt;/i&gt;, then the answer to your question is no. God's ordination of events makes them certain, but not necessary. If an event is ordained by God then it WILL happen, but it is not compelled to happen.
     
  18. Ben Elohim

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    I have not idea what you mean by &lt;i&gt;creation reality&lt;/i&gt;, so I'm answering your question as if the phrase isn't there.

    If you mean by MUST that it occurs &lt;i&gt;necessarily&lt;/i&gt;, then the answer to your question is no. God's ordination of events makes them certain, but not necessary. If an event is ordained by God then it WILL happen, but it is not compelled to happen.
    </font>[/QUOTE]That has to be about the most absurd thing I have ever heard.

    Do tell WHY this event WILL happen and is CERTAIN to happen.
     
  19. russell55

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    Okay, so when God told Moses that Pharoah wouldn't let the people go until God had slain the firstborn of all Egypt, didn't that mean it was certain that Pharoah wouldn't let the people go until children had died? At the same time, Pharoah wasn't compelled to be that stubborn, was he? No one MADE him be that way.

    Pharoah's action was CERTAIN, but not NECESSARY.

    It's certain because God says it will happen, and what God says comes to pass. The reason it happens--or the direct cause behind it--is because a wicked man chose to do a wicked thing.
     
  20. Ben Elohim

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    Because God says it will happen or because God caused a creation blueprint to exist where the event must happen according to the blueprint?

    Basically all you are doing here is equivocating between two different ideas and pretending they are the same.
     

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