Just some thoughts...

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by David Mark, Jul 14, 2003.

  1. David Mark

    David Mark
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    I was 19 when I realized and believed Jesus died to save me. I am 42 now.

    At 19, I began to only read the bible. I had no wise human teacher, so I was sort of on my own. I took complex scriptures for face value. I knew very little about “context” or history. I was like a sponge.

    Then, through some disappointments and trials, I began to develop some tiny little philosophies of my own. I think this sort of led me off into the wilderness. In the wilderness I began to sin consistently. I was rarely if ever honest to God about my sin. I just figured it was all forgiven and he did not need to hear from me.

    Then when my life disgusted even myself, I began to reexamine my beliefs. With a new intensity I approached the complex scriptures again. They were tough on me. The light began to burn me and I cried out to the Lord.

    In the Light I realized that there was much doctrinal error in my life. Not the death, burial, resurrection and ascension of the Lord nor the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. These were firm. It was the “meat” that was sour.

    While hiding under the wing of God and meditating on the shed blood of the Savior: Enter in some of Mr. Calvin’s thoughts (among other renown’s). I was willing to allow Mr. Calvin’s teaching to enter into my heart as I asked God earnestly for wisdom and safety. I did feel safe there. This was a new practice for me. That new thing was: trusting God for wisdom, protection, and only Him and throwing away my vain little philosophies and private interpretations of scripture.

    As I allowed (some) of Mr. Calvin’s thoughts to become my thoughts, I examined closely whether this brought me any closer to keeping the dearest commandment of Love thy neighbor as thyself. That was the going to be my measuring tool.

    If it lead me away from Love thy neighbor, I would forsake the teaching. If it did not interfere with the commandment or if it enabled me to do the commandment, I would continue to allow Mr. Calvin’s thoughts to affect me.

    So far so good. But I remain very careful.

    One very big concern I had at the beginning was whether I would begin to look at others as “lost causes” and not worthy of my attention. Predestination takes me right to the edge of that but doesn’t allow me the luxury of knowing whom the elect are. It’s not my place to know who the unregenerate elect are. Therefore Love thy neighbor is still fully in effect. However, what predestination does do in my heart is give me peace. That peace is the idea that God is in complete control and will not fail at anything he sets out to do. It tells me that no man can interfere with the Will of God. It leads me to the idea that if I desire to increase the Kingdom or even just help the Kingdom, it is a privilege or even a gift. My failure or apathy at any point will not inhibit God’s will in another person’s life. He is in control of every aspect of my life, and he knows how to save the lost. I like to plant seeds and water, but I rest in the fact that it is God that giveth the increase. Many of Mr. Calvin’s thoughts have helped me keep the commandment and focus on the Kingdom of God. I do it better and with more strength than at any point during my walk of faith.

    My fear of losing interest in ministry did not materialize. On the contrary, I have renewed strength and desire. I am more forgiving to those whom I perceive might be in error. I am much quicker to forgive those who treat me poorly. I am indeed slower to speak and I listen more. It’s not easy, but these are just some of the things that have grown in my heart as I begin to study the scriptures in context more and more.

    If anything, I am promoting asking God for wisdom and protection against error. I also heavily promote the commandment to Love thy neighbor as thyself.

    Thank you,

    Dave
     
  2. tyndale1946

    tyndale1946
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    Dave... Speaking from my own point of view and experiences I agree... We are all on a journey to the glory land and I'm not worried that God has saved all his children... In my heart I know he has because his promises are sure having this seal... THE LORD KNOWETH THEM THAT ARE HIS!

    Do human logic and God logic agree... NO!... I love you for what you did for me... That is human logic... God's logic... I loved you before you first loved me and elected you seeing the end from the beginning and those things not yet done saying my counsel shall stand and I WILL DO ALL MY PLEASURE!... Loved us seeing and knowing we would fall.

    I'm now 57 and have had similar experiences as you and there is no doubt in my mind that God HAS SAVED ALL HIS GRACE WROUGHT BLOOD BOUGHT CHILDREN and receive great joy and comfort in that but it a great truth that some day there will be no divisions or separations but just redeemed children of God rejoicing and praising his name forever more!... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  3. Sularis

    Sularis
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    "...willing to allow Mr. Calvins teachings to enter into my heart..."?

    "...throwing away my own private interpretations..."?

    "As I allowed (some) of Mr. Calvin’s thoughts to become my thoughts,..."?

    unregenerate elect? - oh wait you mean the people who are damned no matter what

    I have had too many experiences with people saying shut up and do what we say - because we say so, and we're in charge - otherwise we'll call you a blasphemer and heretic - and lie on your university application - to trust anyone but God and myself - Max Lucado might have good ideas - but hes nutso in some areas - as is Tim LaHaye - Billy Graham - every person Ive come across has some flaw - in their intrepretation - some are so minor - who cares - others are so glaring; I avoid even fellowshipping with them.

    But back to the point

    Yes the highest principle is Love, but you forgot to balance it out with Power and Justice.

    Each attribute of God has its opposite, and pure Calvinists not just hyper ones tend to throw out one in order to fit the other - Oh Ill grant you that Arminians do so as well - possibly to an even greater extent

    But How can you say the Word of God can be void and of no effect - Not even the Satan worshipping Muslims have the temerity to say that - and they worship a false god. The Jews revere the Word so much, but us Christians - nope - the Word cant do this or that - and Im certainly not going to let God do that today; Ive got a headache after all.

    There is not a person in this world that cannot be saved - there is not a single man damned unto perdition - that cannot be saved.

    Your viewpoint allows for a greater number of elect to not hear the gospel because since you dont know - you could be wasting the gospel in one village which are all damned - while the next village over is destined to repent and believe immediately - Oh you'll say that would never happen

    Have you folks heard of this thing called Satan?

    This guy is the 4'th most powerful being in creation - and we keep thinking that he can do nothing

    1 - God
    2 - God
    3 - God
    4 - Satan

    Well whatever - I have to focus, and I will properly re-enter this arena
     
  4. David Mark

    David Mark
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    You make a powerful and passionate argument. It's very effective.

    Will I totally reject what you are saying or will I at least allow what you are saying to affect me and try to believe it? It wouldn't be fair for me not to listen to you. Do I trust God enough to go out on that limb? Yes. I do it for others and I am willing to do it for you in my search for truth. When it gets too confusing, I'll go fishing and just enjoy the day that the Lord has made.

    Jesus' commandment to me is to Love my neighbor... I've been given that ability and I can testify to that. That for certain is a commandment I will be judged on.

    I have no power that I know of. I am not commanded to issue justice.

    I am commanded to love my neighbor. I have no place (that I know of) to judge my neighbor. I have no power to save the lost. I do have the ability to speak the simple message of Christ being crucified, but I have not the power to save.

    Love: I have.
    Power: I have not.
    Justice: Not my realm.

    These three are truly unbalanced in me. Your observation about me in this respect is valid and I admit it.

    Dave
     
  5. Frogman

    Frogman
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    Your viewpoint allows for a greater number of elect to not hear the gospel because since you dont know - you could be wasting the gospel in one village which are all damned - while the next village over is destined to repent and believe immediately - Oh you'll say that would never happen

    This is not in line with the Word of God. IMHO, the Word of God teaches that those who preach the Gospel through leadership of the Spirit will not have any need to fear this ever happening, it is God alone who makes the Word of Life effectual; If a man desiring to preach the Gospel is truly following the leadership of the Holy Spirit then there is no fear of failure.

    Bro. Dallas Eaton
     
  6. Sularis

    Sularis
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    Ah - Im not asking you to issue Justice or Power

    not your job - thats God's

    I am asking you to think - to reason
    (FOR YOURSELF) - Isaiah 1:16-20 focus on 18 - but the context is EXTREMELY important here

    What makes God more Just - saving some and not a drop more - when there is no reason to save any?

    OR

    saving some - but making provisions to save all
    again when there is no reason to save any?
    ---------------------------------

    What makes God more Powerful

    Word affects a "salvational" or at least a regenerative change in EVERYONE who hears it
    (I believe in elect as a subset of CHristianity)

    OR

    Word only affects the elect?

    -----------------------------------------------

    Think about 1 Peter 3:15 for a second - take both sides to the absolute extreme and what reason would each side give

    Arminians - Oh I chose God, because I knew I was a sinner and needed to be saved, so I chose to believe in God entirely on my own, (of course if I could be convinced otherwise then Ill lose my salvation and be damned forever)

    The last part in brackets is a rough generalization of the various camps of Arminian thought.

    Calvinists - He made me believe - no reason except He wanted to show mercy to a few folk - and well if your elected He'll make you believe too. If not well dont worry I hear Hell is warm this time of year.

    -----------------------------------------------

    Again I want you to take that measuring stick of Love (human sized as it is) and put it against God!

    If God doesnt love absolutely love everything absolutely - then His love has limits - and if Absolute Love has limits then what happens to a God who is Love?

    The reason for such a vicious attack on Calvinistic doctrine is not that they're horribly wrong and damned to Hell - No - probably be more of them in Heaven then Arminians - but that they attack God's infinity - If a single group, individual, thing is excluded from any part of God's character extended to the absolute - then that character is NOT absolute - Even when Mercy steps in for Justice - it cannot be half measures - its all or nothing - My God is so golly gee gosh BIG that my attempts to measure Him only show Him to be greater. He is beyond knowing - but that is the task to which we are all called - not to know Him in a universal doctrinal way - although that would help and some people are called to that despite that being looked down upon - but to know Him in a personal way; and through that personal filter apply the ever increasing doctrine/theology that you should be learning.

    Hymns are popping into my head but I have to get back to work - hope this explains
     
  7. Sularis

    Sularis
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    So Frogman you are saying that

    well should lil ol Satan, want to move you 2 miles down the road he/it can't

    Give God a lil credit - He didnt make Satan stupid or powerless

    and look at Job - sure he survived - but what about his kids? Do we even know if they made it into heaven - after all they're slaughtered at the prompting of Satan, while God protects Job.

    Think about it Calvinism tends to introduce a rigidity of structure on to an infinite God - However in that scenario God would counter Satan's lil diversion by raising up a speaker from that village since they arent irrefutably damned from my viewpoint until they die, and that speaker wins both villages to Christ, thus thwarting Satan's plan and not only that capitalizing on it.

    All things work together for good for those that love the Lord

    Even the bad things
     

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