Introducing Christian Doctrine by Millard Erickson (Part 2)

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by tinytim, Jan 23, 2008.

  1. tinytim

    tinytim
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    This is a continuation of the first thread, that is now approaching 30 pages, and thus will be closed soon.

    We are still on the Nature of God, but will soon switch to the Work of God...

    I want to thank everyone for a civil discussion.. That thread was a breath of fresh air...

    Let's continue in the spirit of brotherly love.

    Below is part of the OP from the first thread...

    Right now the class, Theology 1 is being taught through the SCS.
    It will be taught for 6 weeks.. (It started last week, and will go through Feb 14) We will then take a week off, and then start Theology 2.
    The classes are usually held once a week (Thursdays).. but because of scheduling conflicts, we will have our class tonight (Friday)

    I am auditing both classes because, 1, I love the study, and 2, I have a few members in my church that are taking the classes for the first time, and I wanted them to be comfortable.

    Theology 1, and Theology 2 are both using the book, "Introducing Christian Doctrine" by Millard J. Erickson.

    Each week, we are discussing another section in the book...


    Last week in another thread this book was mentioned, and TCGreek, Reformedbeliever, and I thought it would be a good thing to start a thread in which we talk about the book, theology, etc... and correspond with the classes I am auditing...
    IOWS, this week we will discuss God, next week starting Thursday, we will discuss humanity... etc...

    I have also obtained permission from the instructor to share this thread with the other students in class... so we will be having visitors... so play nice!!!

    Let's have a intelligent, rational discussion on theology.

    Since Reformedbeliever and TCGreek are calvinistic, and I am not... I thought it would be interesting for the other students to see intelligent humans discussing theology from different systems of thought... without arguing.

    Everyone is invited to participate. I just ask that you play nice, and discuss the subjects rationally, and intelligently.

    Reformed, TC, and I are going to disagree over things.. but that is OK... That is what theology is about.. That is how we learn... But while we disagree, we will still be civil.

    (I think Dr Bob, will be joining us also)

    Erickson is Calvinistic, so his book is written from that POV.

    Oh, one more thing... Although we come at this book from differing POVs, we will not be trying to win people over to our side, this is more of an educational thread.
     
  2. tinytim

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    This is the last post on the previous thread:

     
  3. skypair

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    tim, all,

    I would say that God ("all Truth") reponds negatively to any and all untruth. We perceive it as "wrath," but, at the heart of it is not an emotional response.

    To some extent, I believe this view would help us in evangelism because it says that God does not hate the sinner but the untruth that that sinner has come to believe, practice, and espouse.

    This is the way in which we can see that God LOVES EVERYONE but hates the false notions that they believe.

    Same with the other natures/essences of God. All God is wanting of us is to APPLY more of His truth once we are saved. The "carnal" believer is merely believing the "flesh"/"vanity" more than the Spirit.

    All this discussion of "love"/"wrath" is tedious in the face of all that God is. He is Truth! He does not change! There is no sense in "ticking off" item-by-item what that means. Plan? The victory of Truth when untruth is revealed for what it is -- that is the "plan!" Won't it be good to get on to the "Work of God!?"

    skypair
     
  4. tinytim

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    I think it is a natural progression to move on to work of God..

    I tend to agree with you sky, I would just like to make sure of one thing.
    Truthfulness is an attribute of God. It seems to me, and I may be wrong, but it seems that you are saying that out of truth comes all other attributes? That would put Truth above all others...

    That may not be what you are saying, and if it is not, then just say so.

    I do think it is important that we recognize all attributes are equal, and equally important... Mercy, is just as important as holiness, and so on...

    I too, am looking forward to moving on... one week a subject seems about right, and we have beat this to death.

    Is everyone else ready to move on?
    Or is there something else someone would like to comment on before we do?
     
  5. reformedbeliever

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    What do we do with verses of scripture like these;

    Psalms 5:5. The boastful shall not stand before Your eyes; You hate all who do iniquity.

    Proverbs 6:16-19
    16 There are six things which the LORD hates, Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
    17 Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, And hands that shed innocent blood,
    18 A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that run rapidly to evil,
    19 A false witness {who} utters lies, And one who spreads strife among brothers.

    Hosea 9:15 All their evil is at Gilgal; Indeed, I came to hate them there! Because of the wickedness of their deeds I will drive them out of My house! I will love them no more; All their princes are rebels.

    Psalms 11:5 The LORD tests the righteous and the wicked, And the one who loves violence His soul hates.

    I think this points to not only the sin, but certain people that God hates.
    If God's emotions are not changing, but 100% perfect, how can God love someone less?..... as some I know will say that these verses are saying He loves them less.
     
  6. The Archangel

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    Reformedbeliever,

    Excellent Points!

    I actually argued once that the only place God can "Hate the sin and love the sinner" is in the elect. I argued this because God (if you believe in a particular atonement, as I do) has already poured out his hatred on that sin in Christ on the cross, He has demonstrated His hatred for sin while demonstrating His love for sinners by providing a substitute. For the non-elect (those not actually redeemed by Christ, those who still have sin on their account) God must punish their sin in their own bodies in Hell. So His "Hatred" of the sinner, in this case, is because, like all unbelievers, their sin defines them as "Children of wrath, by nature."

    I don't want to chase that rabbit too far as it will lead us prematurely into a discussion of the nature of the atonement.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  7. Jarthur001

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    I'm sorry, but with post like this, I may have to sit this one out. There are so many things I disagree with in this post, I don't know where to begin. You have cheapen Gods love as if it is dirt.

    Gods love is pure, but Gods wrath is "the untruth"? WHAT????

    When untruth is revealed? WHAT?? God didn't know about it?

    God does not hate the sinner, but hates the sin? WHAT????? What part of a lie is not part of a person? Can a lie happen without a living being?

    God loves everyone? WHAT?????? Then you do not believe the Bible. This statement is extra Biblical man based logic of daisy chain makers.

    Hates the false notions??? WHAT?????

    I saved the best for last...

    "I would say that God ("all Truth") reponds negatively to any and all untruth."

    Like.....There is a bunch of truth out there running around making God smile as He loves all people making daisy chains....then "untruth" pops up and God has to do something about it.

    Give me a break.
     
  8. Allan

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    Reformed, you acknowledge God's common love/grace toward all men, is this not a 'loving less' than those of His covenant Love with others?

    Again, the 'love less' aspect is not about God 'reducing' His love for a person or people but the type or aspect of His love being given. However, the above is not about 'loving less' but speaking of God judging in accordance with His holiness. This is not a matter of loving less but detestation due to sin. In the illistration I gave with Esau about 'loving less' is still proof of this since the scripture bears witness to the fact Esau had not done any good OR EVIL. Yet in the ALL scripture that you can produce His hated toward any person or people is due to their continued desire to enjoy their sinfulness. Esau had yet to DO anything even sinful.

    However, I will also state that the "God loves the sinner but hates the sin' phrase is WAY overly used and if used should be done with explaination and caution. It is more so a principle of a truth than it BEING the truth. God does love the sinner and hate the sin, else no one would be saved and Christ would not have come to 'save sinners'. What else can be offered by way of explanation for His desire to save the sinner BUT Love? But I will also state that God's hated for the sinner is bound up in his choice to continuing in his sin. This is more where the principle is derived. If man did not sin God would not hate man, agreed?

    I will repost you scriptures to illstrate my point that Gods hated toward a man, certain men, or even a people is bound to their choice to continue in their sin rather than repent:
    Notice in the above His hated is directly related the 'desire to continue in sin', or "those who DO iniquity". It does not state that God hates these people without Just cause. That Just cause is the fact they choose to continue in their sins.

    Question: does God hate any man who has yet to sin? If so, why?
    Notice again, all of the above refer to the sin the person is actively continuing in. Yes, God's hatred of sin must confer itself upon the one who continues in it, since the person who does it has chosen to actively continue in it EVEN AFTER knowing it is wrong/sinful. So while the principle is true that God loves the sinner but hates sin, it is ALSO just as true that God hates the sinner who continues in sin.

    Same thing here, but I would like you to look at something I bolded. God states "I came to hate them there". God did not previously hate them in manner which He conveys now, He CAME TO hate them.

    If He came to the point of hating them, (I believe we can agree God gave them over to their sinful ways), what was His attitude toward them previously if it was not hated?
    Look at the second thing I embolded. :)

    This sums up perfectly what I have been saying. God's hate is conveyed upon those who reject His truth and continue in their sinfulness.

    Though all men are under condemnation none are yet condemned/damned until God gives them over to their lie the have believed. Scritpure states that God gives them over when they reject His truth revealed (Rom 1 and 2 Thes 2:10-13). I don't want to go to far afield here yet since it further down in the theology section to be discussed later.
     
    #8 Allan, Jan 23, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 23, 2008
  9. Allan

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    So in relation to the bolded above, do you think/believe those elect born now are not under condemnation or better to still be considered children of wrath till they come to or into Christ Jesus? (Rom 8:1, Eph 2:1)

    Maybe I'm am misunderstanding what you are saying and confusing it with the Primitive Baptist view.
     
  10. Allan

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    Tim,

    I am thinking that many of these soon to be discussions will have at least a part 2 if not a part 3 to (depending on the discussion) :)

    So are you going to name the new thread in accordance with what aspect of Theology we will talking about so, as well as others can find them readily?
     
  11. The Archangel

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    Hey there Allan! Great question. First, let me say that I have not fully developed this idea so, I can't really support it or not support it at this time (which is why I said "I actually argued..." If memory serves, I was asked to interact with the text of Psalm 1 or 2....?

    Now, to answer your specific question. No, I believe the elect are not saved until they respond to God in repentance and faith. BUT, HERE'S THE CATCH. Because of the nature of election, it is AS IF they were not under condemnation (even though they still are, temporally speaking). Since, as I believe, the Bible teaches election, the elects' sins are paid for by Christ in the one moment-in-time at Calvary, then, by nature of Christ's substitutionary death, those elect, though under judgment until they respond, will respond to God's call to repentance.

    I've heard the question "What if an elect person doesn't respond." That's a good question and shows a basic misunderstanding of election. That question is like asking "What would a square circle look like." As C.S. Lewis said, "It is a no-thing." An unresponsive elect person is like a square circle--they cannot, by nature, exist. Since a circle is, by nature, round and a square is, by nature, square they cannot be both. An elect person is, by nature--ONLY because of God's promises, destined to be saved. BUT, that salvation occurs at the one moment in time when God applies or credits Christ's work to their account. Or, at least, that's the way it looks from our perspective. It may look different from God's but the text is not, to my knowledge, clear on that.

    Sorry to think out loud, but your question was a good one and I've never committed that explanation to paper (so to speak) before.

    Ultimately, though, I believe the elect must respond before they are considered saved. It is not the case that they do not have to respond and, because they are elect, they are saved anyway. An elect person must show the fruit of repentance (one who doesn't is not saved and would be then a square circle)

    Many Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  12. TCGreek

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    Tim,

    I'm patiently waiting on you to take the lead. I'm kinda good and following. :thumbs:
     
  13. Allan

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    Double post
     
    #13 Allan, Jan 24, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2008
  14. Allan

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    Ok, I appreciate you taking the time to clarify. I agree with most everything therein, so you must be right :smilewinkgrin: j/k
     
  15. tinytim

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    I have been pondering that.. I just don't want to get into the situation where we have 5 or more open threads that we are all posting in, and have to keep up with them all.

    Let me think on this.... my brain is still asleep!
     
  16. Allan

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    How about when we move on to a new topic just ask the moderators to close the on going thread that is part of a previous discussion.

    That way if anyone wishes to open a new one from one that they would like to continue, it can be done using a different heading than yours. That way all participates who wish to 'continue' expounding their point or beat the proverbial dead horse can without interfering with your project.

    Just some thoughts.
     
  17. skypair

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    One of the things that has gripped me about "God loves everyone" is this --- Nobody hates a baby, do they? You look at a baby and you only have hopes and love. Well, God sees us all as "babies," incredibly naive and barely able to make it in this world. He is trying always to bless/love but we are too incredibly immature and sinful to realize it. But when some of us do, yes, He favors/rewards us with more truth which has the appearance of bestowing greater love (I had this happen between me, my father, and 2 next brothers as a child. He "hated" them and "loved" me. No. I chose to put myself under his authority and they chose not to. He didn't choose that for me, BTW.).

    Now, does His truth end up "cutting deeper" for some than others? No, but there may be more accumulated against one than another to where we view it as hate or wrath. The tribulation will be one such period when "the lie" will be "in charge." But many, many of the consequences will be attributable to "the lie" and not to God's love or hate as we perceive it.

    God still loves each of His creations, even the worst sinner. And that can be seen when that worst sinner gets saved -- rejecting untruth -- just like the MK that has lived with God all his life.

    Are there various essences of God? Is light made up of a whole rainbow of colors? Yet what is the ONE essence/attribute that God wants us to see?

    skypair
     
  18. skypair

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    No, you are not paying attention. Untruth works its own wrath. In fact, it is self-destroying without the mercy of God. We perceive and call that "wrath" as the truth actually survives and untruth perishes. And in His Spirit, yes, God is angry that His creation and kingdom which was created "good" and innocent has suffered.

    Revealed to man, JJ. You are totally trying to not understand, aren't you?

    Well, don't pretend you've never heard this. Now you're just "wallowing" in indignation, aren't you? :laugh:

    And scriptures don't also tell you this? See my post immediately above for an explanation.

    Hates the false notions??? WHAT?????

    I saved the best for last...

    "I would say that God ("all Truth") reponds negatively to any and all untruth."

    There's more truth out there than you believe. It's in nature -- in families -- in government -- in the law. Largely these are the 7 spirits of God gone into all the earth. It is the reason that men are "without excuse." They are His and our eyes and ears on His authority and truth so that there is not one person of mental capacity that is not aware of God and His truth.

    Sorry to take so much of your time, though. I probably ought to save this for serious inquirers.

    skypair

    Give me a break.[/QUOTE]
     
  19. skypair

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    Ouch! That hurts my brain to even think about! :laugh:

    OK, so apparently God has "marked the elect out" to live until they are saved and reborn? And so this "elect mark" might be considered a "pre-existing CONDITION" whereby they are saved in time. But there are no "conditions" to election/salvation except that God chose them, knows them, and gives them salvation? Why do I feel like the tiger in "Little Black Sambo?" :laugh: Will I actually turn to butter??

    So I guess if an infant dies, he/she wasn't "elect?" Or does baptism save them?

    skypair
     
  20. reformedbeliever

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    My answer to all this Allan is this; What is sin?
    Sin is to fall short of the glory (perfection) of God.
    What person ever born was perfect? Only Jesus.
    I'll agree with Archangel. The only people that God loves perfectly are His elect. The only way He loves His elect is in Christ.
    When speaking of God's common grace or love, it is more of a way to describe the benefits of the non elect living with the elect.
    Either God's love is perfect.... 100%..... and His hate is perfect 100%.... or His emotions are no better than ours.
    I would say that God, being the "I AM" who lives in all time and outside time, perfectly hates some and perfectly loves some. I don't think there is an in between.
    We will probably head towards eternal justification now....... so yeah..... its probably best that we wait for that subject. Grace and peace brother.
     

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