God Controls Hearts and Thoughts as He Says in His Word

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by preacher4truth, Jun 21, 2011.

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  1. preacher4truth

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    "Is God that controlling?" If He is in that much control, then we need to ask ourselves, do we trust Him, is He a good and righteous God? If we simply answer that, we will have no problem understanding He is in control of all, nor will we have trouble accepting it. For He is good and He is perfect and He is just.

    Let's understand then His controlling all things on the platform of Who He Is, OK?

    Now...

    The bolded part is from your words, not from mine. You added to them, specifically "every." I said He put them there? Or is that from you also? Or, did I imply He allows it? In answer, I never stated He puts evil thoughts in man. I did say He controls thoughts. I'm not ashamed of that one bit.

    Here is what I actually said:

    I think the problem lies in the fine Biblical points of God's Sovereignty, such as, does He control the outcome of all things? I believe the Scriptures say He does clearly. I don't believe for one second that He does not control all things, even the thoughts and decisons of man, but that since He does, he grants to those whom He wills to grant salvation.

    You're pulling a small portion of what I said out of the big picture in an attempt to discredit all of it perhaps? I mean, that is what I take as the objective of your post.

    I believe He controls all things and all outcomes.

    Do you not believe God controls all outcomes sir? Does not Scripture show us he turns hearts to accomplish His will?

    I'll try to answer you.

    I said God is in control of everything. Yep. Everything, even you and I. Or, are you in control of everything and control the outcome of yourself? Pilate also thought he did too have control and free will. But he didn't have control of a thing. God did. Job says we can't thwart Gods purposes. Can you?

    Did I say He makes man think every thought (put every thought), or did you extend it out that far on your own, and add the word every? Yes. You added the word every, and also added to it that I said He "puts" them there and tried to qualify that with evil thoughts also, as if I had said God puts evil thoughts there.

    Then after you add to my words you indict me with "I am making God evil." Fortunately, you had to add to my words, twice, to come to that conclusion. I forgive you for that brother.

    Then you say my view of God is heretical, too, right, but only after you've added to my wording, correct, so you could get the outcome you desire? I thought this was unallowed on BB sir, calling one an heretic, or heretical?

    I am no heretic. And even though your belief differs from mine, I wouldn't say such a thing about you.

    Pro 21:1 The king's heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He wishes.

    - Is this not acceptable to you? Can't the Potter form the clay how HE desires? or is that just unfair? And yet if he does, do we not trust Him in it? He turns the heart wherever HE desires. So, we have Him here telling us that He controls the hearts (mind/thoughts) of Kings. Kings are a people are they not? Thus we have Him here controlling the hearts (thoughts/desires) of people.

    Is God not claiming that He himself controls the heart and outcome? Certainly. He's in control. I trust Him.

    Note He does the same thing in Ezra 6:22. And He also caused them to rejoice. Yes, caused.

    God certainly puts thoughts in our hearts, sir, and if we have evil thoughts, who do you think ultimately allowed those to come? God? Or did Satan usurp Him and come all on his own? (God forbid)

    When God gives a person up to reprobation, and they think wicked thoughts, who allowed that to happen? And this is not unjust, by the way.

    You see where the Scripture says God will give us the desires of our hearts? "Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4

    Does this mean word-faith theology, that He gives us (them) whatever we (they) want, like a genie? Or, that He Himself gives us the actual desires that we do have, and makes us have those desires, which are, by the way, for our own good, because He knows best for our lives? When we pray for leadership of God, Who puts the thoughts in our hearts to control the outcome and lead us there? Isn't that God controlling our thoughts for His Glory? This by the way is How He leads His sheep.

    Why is it so unfathomable to you that God control our thoughts, and rule over hearts, and causes them to accomplish His will? I gave you Scripture showing He in fact does these things. If we have problems with God controlling finite mans thoughts, tell me how in the world we can trust Him to control the entire universe, and the end of the kosmos?

    Ever read Pilgrims Progress? No need to hit me with the cliche it's not Scripture, and I'm not saying it is, but have you ever read where Bunyan was terrorized by evil thoughts, and thought they came from his own heart? Wonder Who allowed that? He was a great Christian man. God allowed Satan to put those thoughts there.

    Did He not send an evil spirit to terrorize the thoughts of Saul? Was He just in doing so? I believe so. If (since) He allowed it, who was Sovereign there? Did I say God PUT them there? Nope.

    But that He allows Satan to do so, and then that He does so Himself, control thoughts and counsels of hearts, guess just Who is in ultimate control of everything? God is. He uses Satan and his minions to do so, so He alone is in control of that, and then He also turns hearts as He so desires to do. I ask Who then is in control then of mens thoughts? Satan, God, or man?


    And this free will thing. Ask Pilate if he had "free will."

    And if the Word says "Don't say we will go to such and such city and make great gain. Instead say, if the Lord Wills..." Why? Because HE is in control, and Sovereign, not man. And we are to recognize that. And we are to seek His will because He is in control.

    When they crucified Christ, they must have exercised thoughts to do so. Who allowed that Sovereignly, and if He allowed Satan to do it, who allowed that ultimately?

    I have answered you fairly and in love. I do ask you recant your calling me heretical.

    Gods Blessings.
     
    #1 preacher4truth, Jun 21, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 21, 2011
  2. DHK

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    You said it. Are you going to deny it?
    The fact is that God does not control out thoughts or rule over them. That view is totally contrary to Scripture, ascribes all evil thoughts to God and thus ascribes sin and evil itself to God. That is where the heresy comes in. God is not evil. He is not the author of evil. His nature is goodness and love. We don't serve an evil God who puts evil thoughts into depraved minds making us all his robots whether saved or unsaved. This is your view of God as far as I can determine with the information that you have provided.
     
  3. Benjamin

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    Is God responsible for everything that happens including evil and sin to be in control or does He allow His creatures the freedom to choose within His will and maintain control? A doctrine that all events are predetermined and are unalterable by man must conclude both “everything is predetermined” and that “God is the author of sin.”

    According to Calvinist doctrine for God to be sovereign He must have predestined/controlled everything, true?

    1) Necessarily God has fore determined everything that will happen
    2) God has determined X
    3) Therefore it is necessary that X will happen

    Is it not theological fatalism in this doctrine to suggest that anything that happens has not been predetermined by God? Let’s see.

    In conclusion of the Calvinist view of divine sovereignty God must have predetermined everything before it will happen and it must totally deny man having any free will to alter the future as it could not be a possible sovereign decision of God, presumably because of lack of control, then one must agree that God is responsible for all happenings regardless of the origin being good or evil.

    THEOLOGICAL FATALISM!
     
  4. Robert Snow

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    This ridiculous OP points out yet another flaw with Hyper-Calvinism, such as Preacher4truth believes and espouses here. This errant view makes God the responsible party for sin, which is heresy.
     
  5. quantumfaith

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    :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:

    Yes, DHK. God does not control and impute all thoughts, volition and motivations to us, he does, I believe, in his omniscience know all, but certainly does not cause all:thumbs. His SOVEREIGNTY, which is so often paraded out as diminished by some of us (Me etc) is magnified, in that He is so capable of working the evil, sinful and undesirable thoughts, actions on our part in such a way as to accomplish His ultimate purposes and designs.

    The kernel of this contentious issue, IMHO, is whether one views God as being primarily motivated by Love or his need for Glory and Sovereignty. I am convinced by scripture and experience that it is Love. I for one, am grateful for that fact.
     
  6. convicted1

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    Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

    Jer. 5:25 Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withholden good things from you.

    Eze. 21:24 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye have made your iniquity to be remembered, in that your transgressions are discovered, so that in all your doings your sins do appear; because, I say, that ye are come to remembrance, ye shall be taken with the hand.

    So in light of these three verses, sin lies solely on us. God does not cause us to do them, neither does He place them in our heart and/or mind to do them.

    Maybe I am not reading into the OP correctly, and if I have mistook your OP, Bro. P4T, please forgive me.

    i am I AM's!!

    Willis
     
  7. preacher4truth

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    Go find where I said God PUTS EVERY thought into our minds. You can't. That all came from you my friend.

    So yeah, I'm denying it. You're putting words in my mouth.
     
  8. preacher4truth

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    Many people have struggled with these truths, Jonathan Edwards being one of them, and many other preachers and theologians.

    It's Scriptural and it presents God in all His Glory and Power and Sovereignty.The bottom line is it makes some fear, then they read into it all kinds of accusations, then the bal lgets rolling with the name calling, and other things unnecessary.

    Using Scriptures saying that sin is all on us doesn't prove a thing, because nothing I've said, nor have any Scriptures I've presented, nor do I believe sin the fault of God. It's clear that that is a misrpresentation of my OP, and of God. That God does control thoughts, hearts, and all outcomes is not unscriptural. I think many feel more comfortable feeling man is in control. That is totally unscriptural. Consider also that Satan the counterfeiter also goes to men to control thoughts, and put evil thoughts into hearts and to try and direct outcomes. God also places thoughts in hearts, and turns them to accomplish His purpose. Saying I said He puts evil thoughts into hearts is fabrication, but certainly He allows it.

    Hopefully no more twisting of what I've said occurs.

    Consider these things again, and reread and study it out. And no more adding to my words, accusing me of saying God PUTS EVERY thought in our minds. First, it's untrue I ever said that, secondly, you're completely missing it. Again, He certainly allows those thoughts to be put there, does he not?

    Dialogue as men of God or bow out. No need for brethren to be upset and become beligerent about it. The only dialogue that has been handled unemotionally here so far is convicted1. I've never seen you add a word to what I've said as do others. Again brother, I am not blaming God for sin. Please reconsider what I've shown in Scripture and what I've said. Thank you.
     
    #8 preacher4truth, Jun 22, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 22, 2011
  9. quantumfaith

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    PFT,

    God does in fact, at times and for purposes known to HIM, control people, nations, events, thoughts et al. But the totality of scripture also demonstrates that Man acts on his own also, as evidenced but the Fall no less. Although God does in fact at times move and precisely control (manipulate) things, it is not the "norm" taught in scripture. (MHO)
     
  10. preacher4truth

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    Well, I certainly understand where you are coming from. But Isaiah 46 teaches that all purposes come from God. All of them. To simplify it, either he is God, and since He is, that He is in total control, or not. I don't believe that God simply intervenes at times, but that He is always in control. I don't believe man acts on his own, but I believe man thinks he acts on his own.

    I believe He is in control totally of everything. Nothing happens without His knowledge. Pilate was told he could do nothing, accept it were first "approved" in heaven.

    Now certainly none of us our of the status of Pilate, yet, without Christ what can we do? The Sovereign God I serve, and the picture I see is that He controls all. Unfortunately we see "control" in a negative, as some sort of monger. Let's keep this in perspective as we are talking about our Holy, Loving God. Romans 8:28 alludes to this that all is under His control, and this is to all, so nothing happens without His permission. Nothing. Even the bad and evil. And it yet remains true He allows thoughts, and puts thoughts in, and controls them. Again, I am not suggesting He puts in evil thoughts. He certainly does allow them. He also does put thoughts within us.

    I think it all boils down to our concept of God, and/or lack of a clear concept. Are all of our concepts of God perfect, and our theologies razor sharp? Nope. We become shocked sometimes at how God appears in Scripture. Some sweep it under the rug and become angry about it.

    We See God doing all these different things, in control, nothing thwarts His purpose, we read He controls hearts, counsels, plans, and nothing stops Him. Some have called Him in this a "Bully." I can see where this person is coming from. But let's slow down here. Who are we talking about? God, right? Well, do we not know Him to be Holy, Just, Perfect, Righteous, Loving, Almighty? Yes. So what then do we do when He is seen doing all these things in His Word? We trust Him. Others see Him like this and hate Him brother. Look at the lost world and how they condemn Him for His acts in the OT. Why do they do this? They do not know Him, nor trust Him. They hate that Sovereignty, they demand their rights, yet they have none. But yet, he still reigns in control.

    Do we receive evil from the hand of God? Ask Job. He says yes, we in fact do. He went as far as to say if God would kill him, yet, he would trust Him. Yet, in all these things, and when others accused him of unjustly charging God (because they didn't fully know God as he did, nor trust Him through all this) God says that in all that Job said, he did not sin with his lips. His view of God, that He controls all, was then the correct view. That's the God I serve. I find it simply amazing and I stand in awe, and I can do so because I know in my heart He is a Just and Holy God full of mercy and full of Grace, and filled with Love.
     
    #10 preacher4truth, Jun 22, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 22, 2011
  11. J.D.

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    It can be difficult to get one's hands around this issue.

    God does not have to send evils spirit to people to put evil thoughts in their minds in order for them to sin. Man is a sinner by nature.

    However, it occasionally serves God's purposes to do just that - send a lying spirit in the mouth of the prophets (1 Kings 22:22).

    It's the same with hardening. God does not have to harden a heart to cause it to sin, but he does hardin already-sinful hearts in order to accomplish His purposes.
     
  12. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Im trying to study this out but Im having a difficult time of it..... Perhaps Im just too new to it. What can I read to clarify this theology better?
     
  13. quantumfaith

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    I thank you for your "gentleness" in response. We do disagree, I do not agree that Isaiah 46 teaches God being the causal agent of everything in human affairs, God is in CONTROL, Yes I wholeheartedly acknowledge that. I never see God as a Bully, even when it is obvious that He is exercising His complete sovereignty over people, nations or events. (I dont' think anyone else does either, other than using the term in a persuasive manner)
     
  14. preacher4truth

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    You're right, God does not have to, but He certainly does so. So if he does so, did He have to? Is He doing so for an ultimate purpose? We know He is not wasting His time in anything he does or allows. So I say He has to do this in a sense, because He uses it to accomplish a purpose.


    I know what you are saying. A key word in all this is "allow." God controls all things, and that He allows man, by very definition of allows, shows He is also in control of this also.

    When He allows or even causes hardening of hearts, He is controlling that factor also, because, the only reason mens hearts do not harden is due to the Spirit of Gods restraining power in their lives. If and when God determines justice upon men, that restraint is removed. Thus we again see he is ultimately controlling this.

    I believe God predetermined everything and that man is responsible to repent and believe. God gives up those who reject Him to reprobation, for example, He blinds the minds of those that reject Him so they cannot believe. Why does He do that? Better yet, is He not Just in doing so? He absolutely is, thus we to whom He has granted Grace unto repentance stand in total awe, in recognition that, if not for His grace, there "go I."

    Man struggles with Gods determnined will, and we struggle with God and His ways, do we not? I wonder what attracted Moses to God, that he wanted to know His Ways better, as in Genesis 33? I feel due to him seeing God work Justice upon some, and grace upon others, and that these factors are what made him stand in awe (fear) of God. I believe all Christians should desire to know more of Him. I am simply amazed persons cast aside these truths revealed in Scripture and run to the "safe side" of God that makes them feel sagfe, and turn a blind eye to all of His Glory.

    Hasn't He done all things for His Glory? If so, this also includes His control over men, over affairs, over counsels of men and kingdoms, turning these to fulfill His will, hardening hearts, executing His Justice at will, choosing wwhom He wills to choose by Grace and Mercy: all of it.

    Also Scriptures teach believers that His power is at work in (us) Ephesians 5:20& similar passages. He also causes us to desire and to will and to do His good pleasure, Php. 2:13. He does this by and through His influence on our minds, and His Holy Spirit leading us. Again, He is in control there also.

    Those who reject Him, the power of Satan works in the children of disobedience. He also works through and puts thoughts into their minds, sets the wicked thoughts in motion in man to destroy him eternally and keep him reserved to punishment by the hand of God. Of course he can only do so by permission.
     
  15. J.D.

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    I don't know if this will clarify the issue, but it will give you the "active reprobation" side of the issue: (see chapter 4, esp. "God's Sovereignty")

    http://www.vincentcheung.com/books/lightmind2004.pdf

    You must weight this man's arguments carefully, both to learn from him and be critical of his conclusions. While he is brilliant, I think he is wrong when he says, "Nothing exists or happens without God, not merely permitting, but actively willing it to exist or happen."

    There used to be someone on BB that was a Cheung disciple, and because I often sided with him in debates, people mistakingly thought that I held that position also. But my point was always that the arguments used against him were lame and he could not be defeated in his use of logic and scripture. Much the way I defend full preterists even though I'm not one.

    You can go to mondergism.com or just google the terms "active vs passive reprobation" to learn more about it. Also, you should be familiar with "compatibilism", and remember that compatibilism is NOT a compromise position between free will and sovereignty, but IS the orthodox Calvinist position on the matter.

    For me the whole is summed up in this ditty:

    What God allows, He wills; and what man does, he does willingly, and is responsible.
     
  16. J.D.

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    I can tell you've given this a lot of thought. I think you're on the right track.
     
  17. preacher4truth

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    I think the dividing point is man is allowed to do as he wills, only when God lets him go into reprobation. Then he is left to his own demise and goes deeper into depravity and into hatred of God. I see God in control on both sides, in both that He restrains, and that He let's go. Man thinks he is in control, but I do not believe this to be the case. Anyhow, I think that is hell on earth for them, this reprobation, and then the same and worse into eternity.

    No one knows when this can happen, that God gives up man to his own lusts, but we know that God is longsuffering. I happen to agree with Cheungs statement about God permitting and being active and in control of all things. I think it biblical, found many times over in the Scriptures. I have never read his writings or heard of him that I can recall. I will look up those concepts on monergism.com. Thanks brother.

    I also concur that no solid Scriptural proof or arguments at least have proven what is presented unscriptural. Generally the attacks against it are frankly accusatory, "drive-by" and beligerent. This doesn't need to be. I feel if we have no Scriptural basis for a belief or whatever we name it, then that should motivate us to search it through, and not look for it through a lens of our own bias.

    When I began to search the Scriptures to disprove DoG's, Calvinism, or what have you, I found they were correct on the many teachings they gave. I humbled myself and accepted it. It's actually been a wonderful experience, and I continue to study God out. I'm floored by the Glory of God and His rule and reign and Sovereigny on display. I take great comfort in it, and stand also in awe/reverence of Him. Coming from an IFB background, I found the God presented within that context, (forgive me because I say not these things about the True God) limited, shallow, almost finite, though preached otherwise, and lots of ambiguous statements made about Him, and quick quips from "the BIG preachers" in a matter of fact tone when answering about His Sovereignty and other untouched theological matters. In other words, they were clueless about it, it was a tender spot. Why get so angry about it when asked?

    I knew then and know now there is way more to God and about Him than this limited view presented Him to be among this sometimes caustic and controlling group. I was never satisfied with the concept of God within their theology. I do, however, know several IFB pastors who are not this way at all, but the consensus is that most are the former, and not the latter.

    I have, although, enjoyed the dialogue with yourself and Mr. quantumfaith, and Mr. "backwater Bab-teest" convicted1.

    - Gods blessings to each and all the Saints in Him
     
  18. psalms109:31

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    2 Thessalonians 2:9-12

    2 Thessalonians 2:
    9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.
     
  19. J.D.

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    My experience was much the same.

    I think as you study more you'll see the problems with Cheung's position on this particular issue. And you'll find that he is a partial continuationist (healings); a position I strongly oppose. But I encourage you find your own place on that spectrum.

    Also, I see a misspelling in my post - it's monergism.com
     
  20. JesusFan

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    I believe in the tenets of calvinism as contrasted to those held by Arminianist
    BUT

    Do NOT see God has being determining directly all things, its that all things are remaining under his absolute control at all times...

    that He has both a determinitive and a permissive Will within His being...

    that in an absolute sense, nothing happens without Him both knowing and allowing it to happen, but some he determines directly causing it, others allowing for/permitting it to happen...

    Thing is regardless, that ALL things are done within either His direct/permissive Will, and He maintains Soverignity at all times!
     
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