God's love question

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Judith, May 12, 2015.

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  1. Judith

    Judith
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    Recently I saw a poster that said the bible is the only book in the world where the Author is in love with every person who reads it.

    Just a side note if I was writing that I would change it to "loves every person who reads it" instead of "is in love with every person who reads it." None the less

    We know what the bible says in John 3:16, so does that mean that He loves every single person? If so, and only those who get saved are those who are predestined/chosen, how is this love manifest for the not predestined/chosen?
     
    #1 Judith, May 12, 2015
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  2. righteousdude2

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    Great question Judith .... looking forward to how some respond. As a side note, nice to see you back. :wavey:
     
  3. Judith

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    Thank you for the kind words. :wavey:
     
  4. PreachTony

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    I can only give you my thoughts on the matter, which stem from a theological system in which all have the choice to accept or reject God, so many on this board disagree... We see a God revealed in scripture, especially in the character of Jesus Christ, who loves man, and was willing to die for man, but who does not force man into salvation. He does not irresistibly pull man to repentance. Instead, He commands us to repent, and to keep the commandments. As the Lord said to Israel in Deuteronomy 30, the commandment is not far off, or hidden; but in keeping the commandment, the Lord has laid before us life and good, or death and evil, depending on our willingness to keep the commandment.

    John seems to be saying that God loved the world enough that He gave Himself, the Son, to be the propitiation for all the world. In 2:2, if John is referring to the Elect in saying "not for ours only," then who is he referring to with the statement "but also for the sins of the whole world?"

    Peter continues the theme that Christ did die for all, and was the propitiation for all, but he opens the door to man's ability to accept or reject Christ on the terms of the gospel. Here Peter mentions the false teachers who are so common, but he says that they "[deny] the Lord that bought them." If the Lord bought them, that seems that would make them Elect, as some Predestinarians are adamant that only the Elect were paid for on the cross. Yet Peter says they deny the Lord. How can that be, except man have the ability to choose right or wrong?

    This, to me, is one of the quintessential verses supporting man having a choice. Jesus says He will knock. It is then up to the man to open the door, and allow Him in.
     
  5. Judith

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    While I thank you for taking time to respond you did not respond to the question. In fact you could not even do so if you hold the belief system you do. What you did was give a rebuttal to the ultra-predestination crowd which may or may not be accurate. I am not interested in debating another predestination topic. I am simply seeking an answer to one question as posed.

    My question is if we claim that God loves everyone and only those who get saved are those who are predestined (a predetermined people) then how does God manifest that love to those who will not and cannot be saved? Let me asdd this to make it even more clear. Or do we say that God does not love every single individual and the statement in John 3:16 is a general statement and not absolute towards ecah individual?

    But thanks again for taking the time.
     
  6. HankD

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    Five Point folks (FPF) would tell you that it means not only the Jews but to the Gentiles as well but only as a proffered item.

    If I haven't truly represented the FPF, please correct me.

    In the first place this is not fair because they dump on us when we make the distinction between Jew and Gentile but are willing to use the concept when it serves their own purpose.

    Apart from that this would be a relatively acceptable exegesis.
    I say "relatively" because neither Jews or Gentiles are specifically mentioned in this book.
    I say "would be" because John tells us who the "whole world" is in another verse of this very epistle:

    1 John 5:19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness (literally the wicked one).

    So, in the 1st Epistle of John, the "whole world" is that class of people who are under the control of the evil one (everyone except the children of God). The distinction is not between Jew and Gentile but between who it is we belong to.

    And yes I realize that most FPF support the preaching of the gospel attempting to persuade others to believe on Christ just as Paul did.

    Acts 19:26 Moreover ye see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands:

    Also my son is an FPF preacher so I know whereof I speak.


    HankD
     
  7. PreachTony

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    Apologies, Judith. Would you like me to delete my previous post? I believe I still have the option to edit the post, albeit for a brief time.
     
  8. Darrell C

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    That God so loved the world is simply a Bible Basic.

    John the Baptist reinforced the simplicity of God's love in saying...


    John 1:29

    King James Version (KJV)

    29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.



    He does not prophesy that the sins of those who read the Bible will be taken away, but that the Gift has come to the world as a whole, and that opportunity is presented to every man and woman.

    Salvation has always been about obedience to the Word of God, which is the Gospel in every Age. IN this Age we have the specific Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is the unveiling of what the Word of God has progressively revealed over the course of History, as attested by the Writer of Hebrews, and in fact important enough that he begins His Epistle making this point:


    Hebrews 1

    King James Version (KJV)

    1 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,

    2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;



    We have to be careful in not imposing into Election any semblance of effort or accomplishment in those who believe to the saving of the soul. The Lord did not look into world history in advance and select those He knew would respond in faith, but quite the contrary, He looked into the History of Man and saw that no man would, of himself, have the ability to do the first thing by which He could justify that person and grant Eternal Life.

    That is the heart of the very Gospel of Christ, that man is sinful, separated from God, and not only bereft of the means of saving himself...but in opposition to being saved.

    Only through the combination of the revelation of the Gospel of Christ and the Ministry of the Comforter do we see man eternally redeemed, which redemption was unveiled by God in Christ, Who was God.

    God provided Himself a Lamb, because among mankind there was not one, not a single solitary individual, who could accomplish that which only God could, and that is...saving us.


    God bless.
     
  9. JonC

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    I believe that God does love every person, but not necessarily in the same sense that He loves the Church. This is evident in the Creator/creation vs. Father/child relationship. God possesses all things (everything belongs to God, which is inherent in His status as Creator). Scripture tells us that in Him all things have their being. But we are also told that the Church is God’s unique or special possession. So while I believe that God does love every person, it would be wrong to assert that His love for one who rejects Him is identical to those called His own.

    I believe that God’s love is manifest to all mankind (this is evident in universal provisions, for example). God showed us love by creating us, by sustaining us, and by reaching out to us (all) in love. All men fail and fall short of the glory of God – thus even those who will believe share a former identity with the lost. But the Father draws men to Himself, and they are saved. Having shared the love that God extends to all mankind, God’s own elect enter into a particular love through relationship in Christ. That God does not save everyone does not diminish the love He has for the world. I think that two important things to realize is that love is a verb descriptive of God. Anyway…that’s my minority view.
     
  10. Judith

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    Nice speach but you did not deal with the quesation.
     
  11. Judith

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    Jon thank you for addressing the question. So you feel that He manifests his love to the un-elected by allowing them to live a physical life even though He does not choose to predestine them to eternal life? I am not saying you are wrong, but what about some person who lives their entire life in poverty and misery and is not of the predestined? How have they experienced the manafestation of love? Am I understanding you to say that God has different levels of love?
     
    #11 Judith, May 12, 2015
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  12. Darrell C

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    Not sure how you miss the fact that Christ dying for all men, and all men being made aware of that fact...doesn't answer the question.

    Maybe you could explain that to me.

    On second thought, never mind.

    I would just point out that within the answer there is, in case you didn't notice, also mention of the false premise that the question hinges on.

    I now return you to your regularly scheduled posting.


    God bless.
     
  13. Judith

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    If only the elect, predestined, can be saved then He did not die for every person thus the question.
     
    #13 Judith, May 12, 2015
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  14. Darrell C

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    That is the false premise.

    Read my post again.

    Notice the part about Christ being the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world.


    God bless.
     
  15. Judith

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    I am not interested in debating election verses free will. The only people who can respond to this question properly are those who hold to a limited atonement, election already set in stone. I am not saying they are wrong or they are right on the atonement issue and like I said this is not a thread to debate or discuss such. It is a thread dealing with one aspect of the belief when dealing with God's love. Thus the question I posed in the OP. So far Jon is the only one who has sought to answer the question. The rest have sought to debate their understanding of why we are saved.
     
    #15 Judith, May 12, 2015
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  16. tyndale1946

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    Beloved let us love one another for love is of God, and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God.

    This is a love that changes the heart!... It is not a natural love that we have but a spiritual love for God and each other. To me the love of God as well as the justice of God is beyond human comprehension.

    I would change it to "loves every person who reads it" instead of "is in love with every person who reads it." I would change that as to every person that reads it and lives it!... The OT Israelites knew the scriptures but many times they did not follow it... God intervened at times and enacted justice even though he loved them. In the NT the bureans who heard Paul preached searched the scriptures daily to see if what he said was true. We who believe , believe, read, and follow... That is my biblical understanding!... Brother Glen
     
    #16 tyndale1946, May 12, 2015
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  17. Darrell C

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    I see. Sorry, thought it was a question you sincerely wanted answered.

    I am not sure why I thought that.


    On the contrary, those who hold to limited atonement cannot properly answer the question, except for those who do not want to acknowledge that God did in fact so love the world, not the Elect, but the world, that He sent His Son to die in their stead.


    I understand now, lol.


    If you say so. I thought it was a pretty answer though I might take issue with...


    ...as it is clear that God loved the world as a whole, sent the Comforter to the world as a whole, died for the world as a whole...and all this before men were saved. That love extends to prior to salvation in individuals and to suggest that God's love favors any particular person on a salvific level suggests respect of persons, which does not have a consistency with what Scripture tells us about God.


    There is no debate.

    We are saved because of God's love.

    Not because we are Elect, but because we are loved.


    1 John 4:19

    King James Version (KJV)

    19 We love him, because he first loved us.



    But I can understand not wanting to be interrupted by an opposing view, so I will bow out.


    God bless.
     
  18. JonC

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    Judith, I’ll try to address your issues with my understanding as you raise some very good points. I am not saying that God has different levels of love, but that there are different types of love. I have a love for my wife that I do not have for my friends; but this does not mean that I do not love my friends (or even that I love them at a lesser level). I think it no accident that when God chose to describe the love that he has for his children he chose the illustration of the love of a newlywed husband for his bride.



    The remainder of your points call out, I believe, a difference between how I view predestination and a more common Calvinistic position. I will attempt briefly to describe my position, but will apologize in advance if I only cloud the waters with the attempt. I believe that the elect are determined by God’s election, not Christ’s death. While this was at one time a popular Calvinistic position, it has faded as some found it difficult to reconcile the scope of Christ’s atonement with God’s love for the world. God’s creation is an act of love, but we also live in a fallen world and in our own fallen state. But God so loved the world that he gave his only son that those who believe in him might live. I believe this to be God’s greatest expression of love for mankind (even the “non-elect”) and all men reject God (even the elect). But those he foreknew he predestined to be conformed to the image of his son. Predestination does not negate the love God has for all man, but there is also a distinction between God’s love for Christ (which extends to those who are in Christ) and man in general. I hope this helps explain my understanding.
     
    #18 JonC, May 12, 2015
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  19. Iconoclast

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    The saving Love of God is only found In Christ. Romans 5 Rom 8

    It is a covenant love. Jer 31

    The love of God is only for those who believe.

    The wrath of God abides upon the unbeliever.
    God is good to all men

    God only savingly loves the elect IN Christ. Jesus died for them and turns away the wrath from them alone. He is the propitiation,

    Gods love finds the elect all over the world.
     
  20. Iconoclast

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    They only can answer the question...You cannot/

    Only the elect are saved...the whole world does not get saved.


    As the atonement was perfect and accomplished redemption in the stead of its objects , o0nly the elect could be it's objects as they alone are saved






    ..

    Well now...scripture suggests otherwise;
    2 You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.
    Only when you miss the truth ...then there is.

    wrong...all men would be saved then,,,,wrong
     
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