Pride in receiving?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by humblethinker, May 2, 2011.

  1. humblethinker

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    I Corinthians 4:7
    "For who makes you so superior? What do you have that you didn't receive? If, in fact, you did receive it, why do you boast as if you hadn't received it?"

    I have heard an argument from Calvinists (or maybe Determinists) that accuses the free-will-believer of pride because they were able to 'choose' to receive salvation. Paul here uses the fact that the Corinthians should not be able to boast because all the respectableness they had and were was due to them receiving it. If determinism was the reality, Paul could have easily have said (and I would argue would be obliged to say), "What do you have that wasn't pre-determined? If, in fact, you did receive it, why do you boast as if you had the ability of contrary choice?'. I don't believe the evidence supports that Paul is writing from a deterministic world view.*

    Regarding Salvation, It would be absurd for us to consider a beggar's 'choice' to receive that which he needs as a means to accuse that beggar of being prideful for receiving. Likewise, it would be absurd for us to consider a drowning person's 'choice' to receive the rescue which he needs as a means to accuse that person of being prideful for 'choosing' being saved from drowning.

    Paul is writing from the perspective that the Corinthian could have rejected what they had received and Paul, at the same time, was using the idea that 'all they have is because they received' as a means to humbling them.
     
  2. kyredneck

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    .....A man can receive nothing, except it have been given him from heaven. Jn 3:27

    Actually, I believe Paul was inferring that what they had was NOT of their doing, or choice, or will, but had been given them as gifts from God [edit] which would support the 'determinist' (as you call them) view:


    New Living Translation (©2007)
    For what gives you the right to make such a judgment? What do you have that God hasn't given you? And if everything you have is from God, why boast as though it were not a gift?

    GOD'S WORD® Translation (©1995)
    Who says that you are any better than other people? What do you have that wasn't given to you? If you were given what you have, why are you bragging as if it weren't a gift?

    Bible in Basic English
    For who made you better than your brother? or what have you that has not been given to you? but if it has been given to you, what cause have you for pride, as if it had not been given to you?
     
    #2 kyredneck, May 2, 2011
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  3. annsni

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    This is my immediate thought as well. They cannot boast in anything when it is given to them.
     
  4. humblethinker

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    Would it be agreeable to you that Paul's viewpoint was that the Corinthians received what was given to them?
     
  5. kyredneck

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    You're wanting to make it sound as if they 'accepted' (when they could have 'rejected') these things, and I don't believe the notion of a choice is even implied in the context.
     
    #5 kyredneck, May 2, 2011
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  6. kyredneck

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    26 For behold your calling, brethren, that not many wise after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
    27 but God chose the foolish things of the world, that he might put to shame them that are wise; and God chose the weak things of the world, that he might put to shame the things that are strong;
    28 and the base things of the world, and the things that are despised, did God choose, yea and the things that are not, that he might bring to nought the things that are:
    29 that no flesh should glory before God.
    30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption:
    31 that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 1 Cor 1

    The synergist says, “Of my own choice am I in Christ Jesus”.

    The monergist says, “Of God am I in Christ Jesus”.
     
    #6 kyredneck, May 2, 2011
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  7. humblethinker

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    What I don't understand is that if Paul believed that everything was predetermined and that man did not have any ability of contrary choice, then why wouldn't he have used that point to motivate them to be humble?
     
  8. kyredneck

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    Paul believed in providence for certain, but I think not the hard core determinism you're referring to. I believe the text shows that he was exhorting them to be humble:

    New Living Translation (©2007)
    For what gives you the right to make such a judgment? What do you have that God hasn't given you? And if everything you have is from God, why boast as though it were not a gift?

    GOD'S WORD® Translation (©1995)
    Who says that you are any better than other people? What do you have that wasn't given to you? If you were given what you have, why are you bragging as if it weren't a gift?

    Bible in Basic English
    For who made you better than your brother? or what have you that has not been given to you? but if it has been given to you, what cause have you for pride, as if it had not been given to you?
     
  9. Skandelon

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    I think we can all agree that all we have is a gift from God, even our faith. The question is this: Can one refuse, reject, or resist the provision (gifts) of God?

    Scripture clearly teaches that man can and does indeed reject God's provisions, in fact that is the reason they perish:

    "They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved." 2 Thess 2:10

    The truth was provided as a gift, but they refused it, thus they perished.
     
  10. Skandelon

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    Elsewhere we also see where scripture teaches man to "humble yourself," yet some would have us believe that humility is also effectually wrought by God. Why exhort them to be humble when that too is an effectual result of the regenerative work of God? Or is it?
     
  11. kyredneck

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    Do you see a choice given in 'the receiving' of this passage?:

    But we received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is from God; that we might know the things that were freely given to us of God. 1 Cor 2:12

    Do you see a choice given in 'the recieving NOT' of this passage?:

    Now the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged. 1 Cor 2:14
     
    #11 kyredneck, May 2, 2011
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  12. humblethinker

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    Can you describe the difference between your view of the two?
     
  13. kyredneck

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    The fact is Skandelon, that God's redeemed, born from above children are capable of doing everything they're told NOT to do in the book.
     
  14. kyredneck

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    The natural man certainly has no choice because he is lacking something that was given to those in the 12th verse, the Spirit. The natural man cannot know them, because the things of the Spirit of God are spiritually judged and he lacks the Spirit to discern them. Before one can what appears to be 'accept Christ', one must first be born spirtually from above.

    Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus.

    [edit] duty calls, gotta go....
     
  15. humblethinker

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    Maybe I didn't my question clear... Can you describe the difference of your view of the two (ie. Between the "providence" you say Paul believed and hardcore determinism)? In what ways are those two ideas different in your view?
     
  16. Van

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    All Calvinists are hard core determinists, God ordains whatsoever comes to pass. But since they say God is not the author of sin, they try to have it both ways. So they say they are not hard core, because God is not the author of sin. Calvinism presents a logical absurdity as if it should be accepted because God is beyond our understanding.

    Can men of flesh "receive the gospel?" 1 Corinthians 2:14 says natural unregenerate men cannot receive the things "of the Spirit of God." Now why is that. Being unregenerate, they have not been indwelt with the Spirit of God. If a person is not regenerate, they do not have the "mind of Christ." So the question arises, does this refer to "all spiritual things" or just the spiritual things "appraised" with the aid of our indwelt Spirit?

    The answer is in the following verses. If we look at 1 Corinthians 3:1, we see Paul must speak to "babes in Christ" as if they were "men of flesh." So whatever Paul is telling them, both babes in Christ and "men of flesh" can understand the ideas. Paul gives them milk and not solid food. "Milk" refers to the milk of the gospel, and therefore natural, unregenerate men can understand the milk of the gospel.

    Bottom line, it is yet another fiction to claim unregenerate men cannot receive the gospel.
     
  17. humblethinker

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    This idea seems inescapable to me. That is, it seems that an honest and thorough Calvinist must ultimately concede determinism. Many times I have been wrong or misunderstood certain ideas so I am willing to be wrong in this opinion.

    And, it seems to me that once determinism is conceded then all scripture must be viewed in light of that determinism, which, from my view, seems to give them no choice but to wrest and twist scripture to comport with determinism.

    It seems that a Non-deterministic calvinist's most difficult idea to resist would be determinism.
     
    #17 humblethinker, May 2, 2011
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  18. Skandelon

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    But that assumes that those being called to humility have already been redeemed which would put the cart before the horse by making those "lifted up" prior to being "humbled," when clearly it is those who "humble themselves" that the Lord lifts.
     
  19. Tom Butler

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    We may be making this too hard.

    Seems to me that I Cor 4:7 simply is saying, whatever you have, it ultimately came from God.
     
  20. Skandelon

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    Agreed, but do you believe something must be effectually applied in order to still credit it as being "from God?"
     

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