God 'was sorry'? second try

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by christianyouth, Jun 4, 2007.

  1. christianyouth

    christianyouth
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    This is an excerpt from Genesis 6, the chapter about the flood.
    5Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that (D)every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
    6(E)The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was (F)grieved in His heart.
    7The LORD said, "(G)I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for (H)I am sorry that I have made them."



    I am having a hard time understanding this text. God is omniscient, meaning he knows everything. He had to know that when he made man, man would fall, so why would he regret making humanity?



    How can we understand this verse?
     
  2. npetreley

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    Anthropomorphism: : an interpretation of what is not human or personal in terms of human or personal characteristics

    More simply: Something about God that is otherwise inexpressible put in terms that humans can understand
     
  3. North Carolina Tentmaker

    North Carolina Tentmaker
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    Good Question christianyouth, you have quoted the NASB which translates verse 6 as:

    If you go back to the King James Version verse 6 reads:

    This is a case where I believe the King James is easier to understand and closer to the meaning of the Hebrew.

    The first word in verse six in Hebrew is nacham. You can find this word in your Strong’s concordance as 05162. This word occurs 108 times in scripture. The KJV translates is comfort 57 times, repent 41, comforter 9, and ease once.

    When you find a word in scripture you do not understand one of the first things you should do is look for other passages that contain the same word. If you look at some of the other Old Testament occurrences where nacham is translated repent I think this verse will become clear to you.

    In Exodus 13:17 this word is translated repent and occurs where God does not want the Israelite people to repent and return to Egypt.

    In Jeremiah 18:8 and 10 this word occurs twice and is translated repent both times. God uses it saying that if nations will turn to him he will not judge them as he has intended and if they turn away from him he will take away his blessings.

    Joel 2:14 and Jonah 3:9 both use this word. Joel speaks of a man repenting and turning back to God. Jonah uses it speaking of God saying, ”Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger.”

    The word repent as we use it today usually means to be sorry, but it also indicates a change of mind and action. It is tied to the word turn. We repent of our sins and turn back to God. Real repentance always involves a change in direction. God repented and changed the way he dealt with mankind on the earth. No longer would he deal with all mankind, but through Noah and his family.

    Strict dispensationalists would say that this repentance and change in the way God dealt with man issued in a new dispensation. I would agree with them that this verse indicates God changed the way he dealt with mankind but I would maintain that God’s grace and his plan for our salvation are consistent across all dispensations.

    Anyway, that is my two cents worth and how I understand this verse.
     
  4. npetreley

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    The problem with this is that the Bible also says God is not a man that He should repent. That's why I believe it is an anthropomorphism.
     
  5. Scarlett O.

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  6. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    Yes, you are right, Numbers 23:19, and I Sam 15:29 both say that God is not a man "That he should repent." And both of those passages use the same Hebrew word as Gen 6:6 and 6:7.

    In Exodus 32:12 Moses asks God to repent using the same word and in Ex 32:14 the Bible says God repented again using the same word. In Deut 32:36 God repents, In Judges 2:18 God repents, In I Sam 15:11 God repents, In II Sam 24:16 God repents (same story I Chron 21:15).

    To me I think you have to look at different meanings of the word repent. In every case where God repents there is a change in his actions or direction. But you have a point, there certainly are things about God that we cannot understand or put into human terms.
     
  7. skypair

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    It is a puzzler, isn't it? Here's the deal: Of course God is omniscient -- He knows about everything before it happens, too.

    However, He did not MAKE everything happen. He allowed us that privilege and He just foresaw these events unfolding over time. Now imagine how regretful God was when, before creation, He forsaw how far mankind would stray from Him!

    Well, this is where the "God's regrets" come from. They were seen before time but expressed to man IN time. It's not at all like He didn't foresee these things -- it is merely God telling us what He felt about them when He realized what we would become.

    skypair
     
  8. christianyouth

    christianyouth
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    Thank you for the responses. Especially thanks to the one who went in-depth with the Hebrew words!:thumbs:
     
  9. JustChristian

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    Doesn't that say that we can accept nothing the Bible says about God? Or do you get to pick and choose?
     
  10. webdog

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    Interesting...kind of like "predestination" and "foreknew". I failt to understand why calvinism still takes these words out of an anthropomorphisic context.
     
  11. J.D.

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    Predestination and foreknowledge are attributes of God. Man is incapable of predestination or foreknowledge. Therefore, they can not be anthropomorphisations.
     
  12. webdog

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    God being omnitemporal / atemporal has no use for any "pre" or "fore" prefixes. These are anthropomorphisic phrases used by beings bound by time, which God is not.
     
  13. Greatest I am

    Greatest I am
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    The flood was an aptitude adjustment.
    The earth has had many adjustments over time.
    I wonder when one will take.

    Regards
    DL
     
  14. J.D.

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    There actually was a beginning in Gen 1, and there actually was a before in Eph 1. They're not metaphors. I don't know which long word describes my position but that's my story and I'm stickin to it. When the bible says that God chose something "before" it existed, it is not an anthropomorphisation because it does not express God "as a man", because man can not "choose" something that does not yet exist.
     
  15. Greatest I am

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    If we are to understand fully the teachings of the Bible, it does not serve us to have God flitting back and forth through time. Paradox notwithstanding, God is logical and linear in His thinking. If we are in His image this becomes obvious. We are linear creatures. As is God. Otherwise He would not speak of beginnings and ends.

    Regards
    DL
     
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
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    God is not limited to linear thinking. As Creator of time He naturally transcends it. He need not "flit back and forth," He simple is, was, and will be - always.
     
  17. Bro. Curtis

    Bro. Curtis
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    Isn't time ours ? Doesn't the final judgement on earth begin with "...time no longer shall be...."


    I'm not saying I understand how he does it, but to me, it's either our time, or it's eternity.
     
  18. Greatest I am

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    There is no doubt that He always will be. The Bible does show that He would have to travel back and forth through time to do what the Bible says He does.

    Gos is our prime example in everything. We cannot time travel. God probably can but does not. If He could then why not purge His system of evil and do it now. Why not go kill the source for evil to man right now. Satan's death right now in the past would solve all of God's "mistakes".
    I know God does not make mistakes but evil is here and He did create it and let it live in the beginning and allows it to live now.

    Regards
    DL
     
  19. Greatest I am

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    Are you saying that God works by our time and does not time travel?

    Regards
    DL
     
  20. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
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    God does not need to "time travel." He transcends all of time - He always is, was, and will be - the same. He is in no way bound by our simple little view of time. God is not a man - He is not bound by our petty limitations on Him.

    God makes no mistakes - we make the mistake of judging Him by our own set of rules.

    Your posts have a common theme - you don't understand why God didn't or does not destroy evil according to your expectations. Why should God act according to your or my reasoning?

    Methinks thou hast a very low view of God.
     

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