God wants to save everyone without exception?

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by npetreley, Jul 15, 2004.

  1. npetreley

    npetreley
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    First, let's get our terms straight. The words "all" and "any" can refer to "all/any without exception" or "all/any without distinction" (as in all/any nations). When Arminians interpret "all/any" they tend to refer to it as "all/any without exception".

    Arminians like to quote parts of Matthew 11 to "prove" that people have the power to repent. In the whole context, however, this passage not only says exactly the opposite, it flies in the face of Arminian principles.

    First, the Arminian must answer the question, if God is not willing that any (without exception) perish, and mighty works could have saved Tyre and Sidon, then why didn't God do those might works in Tyre and Sidon?

    Second, if God is not willing that any perish, but all (without exception) come to the knowledge of the truth, then why does Jesus REJOICE at the fact that God hides the truth from some and reveals it to others?

    20 Then He began to rebuke the cities in which most of His mighty works had been done, because they did not repent: 21 "Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you."

    25 At that time Jesus answered and said, "I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and have revealed them to babes. 26 Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.


    The parallel passage in Luke is even more revealing...

    21 In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, "I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.

    Here you have Jesus REJOICING over the fact that the Father has chosen to hide the truth from some and reveal it to others! Why would Jesus rejoice over such a thing?

    Because God is sovereign, and His will is ALWAYS the best will, no matter what the corrupted human mind reasons about it.

    "Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight." This is the only reason we need to accept election.
     
  2. Me2

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    If one were to seriously ask themselves what is the difference between the two Jesus being preached and they will uncover their answer.

    Gal 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
    Gal 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
    Gal 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
    Gal 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any [man] preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

    sounds serious, but few take this admonition as truth. what is the doctrine of christ?

    1Ti 2:3 For this [is] good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
    1Ti 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    1Ti 2:5 For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
    1Ti 2:6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

    a ransom for all... not some worthy enough, or intelligent or brave or rich enough. but for all sinners who lack the knowledge of Jesus Christ. If any man teach any other gospel let him be acursed? still sounds serious to me.

    what is the difference between the two christs preached.?

    one saves all.
    the other only saves some.

    which is amazingly ironic since those preaching this "other jesus" only allows him to saves 5% of Gods creation. and they call him lord. the great conquerer over sin and death.
    Im sure the curse they bear is fearing the judgement of their lord. since they do not allow him to possess any measure of mercy.

    Me2
     
  3. John Owen

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    Me2 said
    this is exactly what does not take place... unless you are a Universalist... Jesus does NOT save all without exception, He DOES save all He intended to save... now that is the Gospel... do not denigrate the sacrifice that Christ made by making it an uneffectual work, where Christ really wishes He could save everyone, but alas, He cannot... no, rather it is Christ Jesus the Sovereign Lord of the Universe who saves those He intends to, those who are of His flock, those sheep who hear His voice, those whom He draws to Himself who... after seeing the beauty of Christ as if they were once blind, but now could see... could not but believe in Him...

    this is not to say that some of the benefits of Christ's work do not affect those who are and who will remain unbelievers, Christ's work restrains evil to be sure, allowing the rain to fall on the just and unjust alike... but this does not mean that all without exception are saved....
     
  4. Me2

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    John Owen,

    did I forget to mention that Jesus dwells within the elect and lives through them as himself to his fathers creation.

    in other words..the elect have the same compassion towards the enemies of Jesus. the same motivations. the same intensity. the same goals of accomplishing the will of the father. and it aint to leave any behind.

    although Jesus doesnt explicitely say he personally would save everyone. It is implied he will save everyone through the elect..his body.

    Does he say that everyone who is called is saved in THIS age. no. he says who the father draws to himself will be saved. but what of those not called in this age?. again another implication that the drawing would continue to occur towards the rest of Gods creation in ongoing ages drawing all to the "spirit of Jesus" who will indwell the elect.

    this age is the unvealing and teaching of the ELECT!!!!! NOT for the whole of creation.

    this 2nd drawing has to occur in the following ages to come. the fall harvest as opposed to the spring harvest (firstfruits)

    1Ti 2:6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

    apparently "due time" doesnt include this age for the majority of Gods creation.

    but to have the spirit of Christ within oneself demands the will of God to be accomplished. which means..a ransom for all.. however many ages it takes to draw all to Jesus Christ.

    Col 1:27 To whom God would make known what [is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
    Col 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

    does the bible only mean that this age that the entire will of God must be accomplished? no indeed!

    1Co 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
    1Co 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.

    all are made alive in christ..every man in his order..presenting every man PERFECT in Christ Jesus. thats the task of the elect towards every man until all men..every men. every creature in Gods kingdom reaches a full knowledge of The Lord Jesus Christ. the full stature of the image of man..

    the only thing left to ask ourselves..does any man standing besides ourselves deserve less?
    are we saying that we are better than any other or deserve more than the next sinner?

    my God is not partial..
    he loves all his enemies.

    Me2
     
  5. npetreley

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    Calvinists interpret 1 Timothy 2:6 to mean "all without distinction", since that interpretation makes perfect sense within the context.

    Arminians interpret 1 Timothy 2:6 to mean "all without exception", since that interpretation fits their doctrine.

    Now, we know scripture does not contradict scripture, right? So which interpretation is correct?

    1 Timothy 2:5For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time

    Matthew 20:28
    just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."

    Mark 10:45
    For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."
     
  6. Johnv

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    Does God desire that everyone be saved? Yes. Does everyone get saved? No. Why? God desires that everyone be in a relationship with Him out of our love for him, not becuase we're forced into it. This is our free will. God knows ahead of time that not everyone will choose a relationship with Him. But that doesn't mean that God prevents some from having a relationship with Him. Sin prevents us from having a relationship with Him.
     
  7. npetreley

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    I agree that sin prevents us from having a relationship with Him. I disagree that the difference between who gets saved and who doesn't amounts to free will.

    A god who is not willing that any (without exception) perish yet cannot accomplish His will because man's will resists His will is an incompetent god whose promises are meaningless.
     
  8. Me2

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    there are plans within plans woven into the scriptures.
    there is the election which is specific in nature. there is the calling of the vessels of wrath to serve as teachers of error (antichrists and false prophets)

    and there is two seperate resurrections.
    the firstfruits and the main harvest.

    confusion about the conclusion of Gods goal for his creation and taking a plan within Gods goals should be defined seperate.

    the calling of the elect conbined with the calling of the reprobate does not define the conclusion of Gods Goals. It is a means to the end.

    If we witness to some not being saved in this life or this age doesnt mean they are non salvageable. they are being placed into a circumstance wheras the elect will rescue them from. the elects purpose is to rescue Gods creation from sin. As Jesus came from eternal life into death (earth). the elect as his body will reproduce this feat by entering into death, hell and the sea to rescue Gods creation in the next age.

    Rev 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

    death hell and the sea doesnt freely give up its inhabitants. God rescues them from their plight using the elect. (standing in front of the GWT judgement means they have been resurrected awaiting eternal life). the elect are being trained to be compassionate towards Gods enemies to the point of giving up their lives to bring about Gods conclusions to his will.

    the inheritance of the elect is to bring to conclusion Gods will, which is to reconcile all men to the fullness of the intended image they are to become.

    calvin as well as arminius was wrong for striping God of His ultimate sovereignty. They were both wrong to give man free will to the point of refusing salvation via the sacrifice of Christ.

    they preached the wrong Christ. they both preached the christ that only saved some.

    Me2
     
  9. BobRyan

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    If that was a quote of Christ rejoicing that God arranged to keep someone in the dark - I missed it. :D

    However if taken to the extreme of Calvinism then your interpretation becomes "My precious 7 year old is being kept in the dark by God - and Jesus is rejoicing over that fact".

    May I suggest that there is another way to look at it?

    God is not willing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. So then what about those who "do not come to repentance"? Is it because "God is hiding the Good News from them?".

    What does the Word of God say about His attention to those who are not listening?

    It says that are "rejecting God's PURPOSE for themselves"?

    oops!!

    See how God's Word describes God and what He is "Wanting"? See what he wants for those who "would not" receive Him - according to His Word?

    Notice how much "work" God is doing IN their behalf - sending them missionary after prophet after scribe?

    As opposed to "keeping them in the dark -- to His own utter delight"?

    And then when they fail - what "did He WANT"??

    [/quote]

    Oops!!


    I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling.


    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  10. npetreley

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    Bob,

    If you'd like to go off on your own little tangents with some of your own favorite verses along with your own personal interpretation, then please start another thread.

    You have yet to address the post that started this thread except to erect a straw man about "my precious 7-year old".

    The Bible says what it says. It doesn't change what it says because you can erect a straw man to make it look more emotionally unappealing.
     
  11. Doubting Thomas

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    It's evident to me by now that this whole forum consists of threads in which people (including Calvinists) post their own favorite verses with their own personal interpretations.

    :rolleyes:
     
  12. Stratiotes

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    One problem in this debate (and other theological debates for that matter) is that it turns into a "who has the most verses" debate. For every one verse from the one perspective somebody else can come up with one that seems to say the opposite - which is why the lost think the scriptures can be twisted to say whatever the reader wants them to say and so they remain lost. Its why so many christians think they have to leave interpretation to the "experts" who know how to twist to their liking. So, the end result is ignorance and stagnation in the world and in the church.

    The trick is to figure out how verses that appear to contradict each other can come together. It isn't a vote where the most verses wins the doctrine - its the clearer verses making sense of the more obscure ones.

    Here's what I think about this issue and I think both sides will agree at least to some extent:

    God is not *willing* that *any* (universal) should perish. But, individuals must *believe* in order to be saved so some will be perish despite God not being willing that they do so. God is under no obligation to change this situation...if we perish, it is no one's fault but our own.

    The difference is this - both sides, I think, agree that the Spirit must draw individuals to repentance. Arminians say he draws everyone and Calvinists say he draws only some. Again though, God is not obligated to draw any at all. He may not wish them to perish but he is not obligated to woo them away from their chosen destination. The bottom line is even though he is not willing some will still perish (unless you are attempting to argue the universalist position as npetrely pointed out).

    Here is the issue that I think a lot of arminians confuse.... Arminians I have encountered think that people go to hell because they reject Christ's sacrifice. I think this is where they go wrong in their study because such reasoning would imply that "fairness" would dictate they get an equal chance to hear the evidence as everybody else does. But, it is a false premise. We are not condemned because we reject Christ's sacrifice - we are condemned before we ever have the chance to make such a decision because we have rejected the father - first in our father Adam and then in our sins heaped on top of that sin of our origin. If we never hear the gospel, we already stand condemned and deserving of our fate. It has nothing to do with rejecting Christ, we are doomed before we ever have that opportunity - and deservedly so - and that is completely fair. What is *not* fair is the fact that Jesus chose to die in my place and I can never repay him - that is not fair to him. If God has mercy on me and draws me to believe and accept Christ's righteousness for my own and he does not do the same for some lost soul in some jungle who will never hear the gospel, that is his perogative. God is completely fair in that justice is served. But it is unfair that his son had to pay the penalty for any of us when we are unable to pay it ourselves - unfair but merciful and just. Don't let your sense of fairness come to the conclusion that God owes us all an equal share of the gospel...he does not owe those who hated his yoke anything. We rejected him from the beginning - even before we heard about the gospel and he would be completely fair to place us in a jungle or a cave for the rest of our lives where we would never hear it if he so pleased.
     
  13. Doubting Thomas

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    Good observation.

    Yes, that is the "trick", but your solution is problematic. This is because what is "clear" to some interpreters is deemed obscure to others (since it conflicts with what they consider "clear") and vice versa. Who decides what are the clear verses when that is one major points of dispute? I believe this is the fatal flaw of Sola Scriptura.
     
  14. npetreley

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    I disagree, depending on how you define "willing". If it is not God's will that any perish, then none will perish, since God's will cannot be thwarted. It may not please God that men perish, but either it is his will that some perish, or God's will is not sovereign and somebody else is running the show.

    I agree 100%, although I think the problems could be stated in simpler terms.

    Arminians have no concept of what mercy and grace really mean. Their soteriology is based on the assumption that every human being has a right to be "offered grace".

    Even simpler: Arminianism is repackaged humanism.
     
  15. npetreley

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    IMO there is no fatal flaw in Sola Scriptura.

    If you examine these debates carefully, you'll see that in most cases, Arminians rarely compare scripture to scripture to reach their conclusions. They latch onto one or more verses that can be interpreted according to their beliefs. When confronted with explicit contradictory scriptures, they either:

    1. Find extremely elaborate and convoluted means of explaining away the explicit contradictions in other scripture

    2. They ignore the contradicting explicit scripture entirely and defend their interpretation based on human philosophical arguments

    I know Arminians "feel" that the reverse is true for Calvinists, but a careful analysis of these threads would demonstrate otherwise.

    Just look above in this thread alone. I presented three scriptures that must be reconciled. Two of them quote Jesus as saying He is a ransom for many. One says Jesus is a ransome for all. Here you have what appears to be a contradiction. Let me compound the problem with quotes from Isaiah:

    53:11b By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities.

    12b And He was numbered with the transgressors,
    And He bore the sin of many


    There you have MANY CLEAR scriptures that say Jesus bore the sin of MANY, and was a ransom for MANY. These verses have no other context than salvation itself, and they end up teaching not only election, but limited atonement.

    And then you have ONE scripture that says Jesus was a ransom for ALL, and it appears in a context that clearly talks about men from the perspective of "all men without distinction", NOT "all men without exception".

    1 Timothy 2:1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, [watch for it -- here comes the qualification...] 2 for kings and all who are in authority [...] etc.

    Now -- has even a SINGLE Arminian come forward to compare these scriptures to each other and try to arrive at the truth through comparison? No, they respond by rolling out their old favorite scriptures because the conclusion is inescapable.

    IMO, Sola Scriptura always works, if you simply take explicit scriptures at face value, and use them to interpret the implicit or "debatable" scriptures. Arminians CANNOT do that and still walk away with their views intact.
     
  16. Doubting Thomas

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    That's because you're a Calvinist. Of course, you think you're the ones interpreting everything correctly. Curiously, though, no one held to such an interpretive framework for the first 1500 years of Christianity, not even the great Augustine whom Calvinists like to quote out of context. I guess God simply decided to wait that long to reveal the true interpretation of the Scriptures.



    Did you ever stop to consider that "many" could mean "all" in certain contexts? Otherwise, how do you fit the following verses into Calvinism:

    "But the free gift is not like that of the offense. For if by one man's offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the one man Jesus Christ abounded to many." Romans 5:15 (So only "many" and not "all"--everyone without distinction--died as a result of Adam's sin???)

    "For as by one man's disobedience, many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous." Romans 5:19.
    (Only "many" and not "all"--everyone without distinction--were made sinners by Adam's disobedience??)

    The answer is in verse 18:
    "Therefore, as through one man's offense judgement came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man's righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life."

    In other words, Paul uses "many" and "all" interchangeably in this passage. This is a problem for Calvinism, unless one wants to claim that the "all" who died as a result of Adam's fall (and who were made sinners) does not include everyone without distinction.
    Again, you're kidding yourself. Arminians can come up with an equally comprehensive interpretive framework which explains "debatable" passages without contradiction. That you refuse to acknowledge that only shows that you're beholden to Calvinism which is based on its own interpretitive presuppositions. The problem is that those interpretitive presuppositions were not believed by the Body of Christ until the time of Luther and Calvin.
     
  17. npetreley

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    Yes. Only "many" and not "all" die as a result of Adam's sin.

    John 11:26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.

    Judgement DID come to ALL men, thus the reason why mercy is necessary. And the free gift came to ALL men. It doesn't say "the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life FOR ALL MEN."

    You can't demonstrate that assertion using your greatly flawed attempt at explaining the "many" above.
     
  18. Johnv

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    If this is not the case, then God has created people for the purpose of sending them to Hell from the beginning. This is contrary to the scriptural concept of a God of love. Since it is God's will that we freely follow him without duress, then the free will of people to follow Him or reject Him is in accordance with God's will.
     
  19. Doubting Thomas

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    Yes. Only "many" and not "all" die as a result of Adam's sin.

    John 11:26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.</font>[/QUOTE]Nice hermeneutical gymnastics, but no dice! ;) (And talk about exporting unrelated verses to try to explain away the obvious! [​IMG] )

    So only the "many" (and not all without exception) were made sinners in Adam, huh (verse 19)? Wouldn't that violate "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (3:23--unless you understand "all" not to mean "all without exception" here as well?) Or I suppose you want to shift around the meanings of "many" and "all" in these passages to mean to "all without exception" in one verse and only mean "limited number" in the next as it suits your purposes? [​IMG] (So much for proper exegesis...) Nope, I'm afraid the context indicates that the "many" and "all" are interchangeable and have the same meaning throughout this passage.

    You're right--that would be universalism (something Me2 espouses). It does say the free gift came to all men, though.

    (Nice non-sequitur, BTW)
    Heh, heh...I think it's pretty evident who has the "flawed attempt at explaining the 'many' above" and it ain't me. :D

    It's been fun playing, but, alas, I've got to get back to work. [​IMG]
     
  20. npetreley

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    Criminy, DT! If there's any non-sequitur in there, it's assuming that because Paul said "many" in the first verse and "all" in the second verse, it follows that he is using many/all interchangably.

    Regardless, you are guilty of exactly what I had accused of Arminians. I gave you several verses that proclaim that Jesus was a ransom for (and atoned for) many. I've shown from the context of the ONE case where it says "all", that it is "all without distinction" not "all without exception".

    Now it is your job to do the reverse. Show that all of the "many" verses must actually be interpreted as "all" from the context of THOSE verses. Dig through those chapters in Matthew, Mark, and Isaiah and provide your argument that from the context of these verses, "many" must actually mean "all without exception".

    Can't do it? Then we must take the plain meaning of the text when it says "many". Then, where we find "all" used in contradiction to "many", we must look to see if the context DEMANDS "all without exception", or if it may be interpreted "all without distinction". If it DEMANDS "all without exception" then we still have an unresolved contradiction. If from the context it can be interpreted "all without distinction" then "many" stands as the correct interpretation.

    Let scripture interpret scripture.
     

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