Questions on original sin

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by npetreley, Jan 19, 2007.

  1. npetreley

    npetreley
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    1. If Adam (and Eve) had not sinned, would creation have been better off from God's perspective? Why/why not?

    2. If Adam (and Eve) had not sinned, would creation have been better off from our perspective? Why/why not?

    3. Does it matter what we think about whether or not creation would have been better off?

    4. Did God foreknow everything about creation before creation? Did He create everything knowing the outcome, or did something like Adam/Eve's sin catch Him by surprise? Is it Biblical to claim God did not foreknow everything about creation before He created?

    5. If God foreknows everything about creation before creation, then does it follow that everything that happens in creation is according to His plan, or does creation have its own power outside of God's will? To ask this another way, if God foreknows everything about creation before creation, then could God have created things differently if He foreknew something would have gone against His will?

    6. Given that it was the only thing that was "off limits", why did God put the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the garden?

    7. Is it Biblical to believe satan can do things without God's permission?

    8. Given that satan can do nothing without God's permission, and that God foreknew what satan would do and how Eve would react to satan's lies, why was satan allowed in the garden?
     
  2. reformedbeliever

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    Seems to me He has a master sovereign plan, being a master sovereign God! How great thou art!
     
  3. Scarlett O.

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    I don't know. Would He have created more people.....created us? If so, then we would all be perfect and sinless. But we wouldn't have the opportunity to live in Heaven with God. I don't know about God's perspective. I know He hates sin and did not desire for sin to come into the world. I don't think I can answer this question.

    Only if God continued to create people...us. Only then could we have a perspective. I suppose it would have been just fine with us because we wouldn't know any different. We would have fellowship with God, but we wouldn't have had an opportunity to know His grace and mercy. Again, I don't know.

    It doesn't hurt to talk about it, but I don't think it matters. But moot discussions are sometimes profitable especially when they cause us to think about what we believe.

    Yes, God knew everything about creation before He even started.

    No, nothing catches God by surprise.

    I don't believe that the bible supports that people catch God offguard. God knows...literally.....everything. And He knew it all before He even created anything.

    Tricky question....yes and no.

    Creation does not have its own power outside of God's will. God, in His Sovereignty allows for free will. Creation has its own will inside of God's will. I can choose to sin or not to sin. I can choose to eat a bagel for breakfast or a piece of toast. I can take the freeway to work or at the last second, I can take the backroad.

    God is Sovereign and in His sovereign Hands lie His children and their free will. It's like you and I holding a cricket in our hands. That cricket can hop around madly or it can sit still. It can sleep or it can play a song on its legs. But ultimately, we are in charge of that cricket's fate.

    God holds creation in His Hands. Creation has free will inside those hands, but God can alter even the free will of creation as He so chooses. He can change our circumstances, change our hearts, and alter world events.

    God could have and can still create things to His Pleasing. He still does. Just think how many people were not in the Twin Towers on 911 that should have been and whose lives were spared. I do not believe that murder is God's will. I do not believe that terrorism is God's will. But He allowed it to happen and knew when He said, "Let there be Light", that it would happen.

    Just because things happen that are sinful and evil does not mean that God's Sovereign will is being undone. Christians still sin. Sin is against God's will, but christians in their sin do not unravel the will of God.

    God knew when He created everything that Hitler would be a madman and that people on the BB would fuss and feud. Those things fight against God's will or go against God's will, but there is nothing that any human being can do that will alter God's will nor negate God's will.

    Not to tempt Adam and Eve.

    Not to test Adam and Eve.

    But because He loved them enough to let them have their own purpose of heart.

    Do we want our children to obey us and respect us because they are afraid of us or because they love us with all of their hearts?

    Adam and Eve disobeyed God and paid a horrible price for it. But they returned to God. Eve, in the middle of her punishment of having to bear children, marveled in her own body and praised God and acknowledged His wonderful work in her body.

    Adam taught his sons to revere God. Unfortunately, Cain, in his own free did not. But Adam taught them nonetheless.

    They returned to God's affections. That's the true love of God and the true relationship with Him.

    No. It is not biblical to believe that satan has power of his own making.

    The only things satan can do is what God allows him to do.

    God and satan are not opposite sides of the same fence. They are not yin and yang. They are not a little white angel sitting on one shoulder and a little red devil sitting on our other shoulder.

    God is Almighty Jehovah.

    The devil is simply a creation. A creation doomed for eternal damnation. A creation that can only slither around and can only torment for a season.

    Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world.

    God did not create us to be mindless nor robotic. The devil was allowed in the garden for the same reason that the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil was forbidden.

     
  4. Pastor Larry

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    I didn't closely read everythign you said but these two things jumped out at me.

    Is this really love? Would any parent in this world define love as letting their child have his own purpose of heart? Of course not. Parents are given to help raise children away from their own purpose of heart.

    Both are biblical reasons. The Bible talks about the fear of God, and uses the fear of hell and punishment as a reason to obey. It also uses love. So we should not hesitate to do both.

    BTW, it might be better to skip the multi colors and the wierd fonts. Use italics or bold to stress something, not to do your whole post in. And black is always better. Easier to read.
     
  5. Jkdbuck76

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  6. skypair

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    Yes.

    Yes.

    No.

    Yes. No surprise but not usually His will. We read that hell expanded itself to accomodate Satan and the lost. God could have created a hell that was "right-sized" if that was His intent and foreknowledge, right?

    You only leave God the options that you can imagine. How about this -- man has power outside God's will and God can overcome even that. The fact is, most things go against His will (unless you are going to assert that God will sin) but God wins IN THE END.

    Every dispensation of God has a "test." Why? Again, it's the thing you leave out -- God wants to eventually have only those who love Him in heaven with Him. Love is NOT forced, is it. YOUR church (Reform/Calvinist) tried to "compel" people to come in 1527-1600. Guess what. The more the truth is persecuted, the more it denies the false. Look at Smyrna, npetey! Love is NOT something you compel by "drawing" people against their will!! You have a HUGE problem here with your paradigm.

    No, but does that mean that God dictated what Satan does?? Does that mean that God dictates to sinners how they should sin??

    Again, mpetey, since this appears to be going over your head :laugh: -- God is looking for those who, by their own volition, love Him! If their volition is to sin, He has let the consequences fall as they will and they get a chance to RECONSIDER. Have you got that yet?? God gave them "permission" to do despite His will and He didn't immediately strike them down for disobeying. I mean, God REALLY wants you to reconsider your destiny, npetey.

    skypair

    skypair
     
    #6 skypair, Jan 19, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2007
  7. Scarlett O.

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    Well, when you do read everything I said, I'll come back and talk to you about those two points you brought up. :)

    Sorry about the blue ink and unorthodox fonts. I didn't know people couldn't read them.
     
  8. Pastor Larry

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    I did read everything you said. You apparently didn't read everything I said however. What I said was that I didn't read everything you said closely.

    But I am not sure why that keeps you from responding. I think these are important points.


     
  9. Scarlett O.

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    I would think that a parent would want their child to love them and obey them out of their own intent rather than to fear them and obey them out of trying to avoid punishment.

    Yes, the bible talks about the fear of God. Proverbs says that it is the beginning of wisdom. To fear God is to respect and revere the fact that He is Almighty God and we are nothing but clay. I don't believe to fear God mean to be scared of Him.

    I do not believe that the bible uses the fear of hell and punishment as reasons to obey God. Hell is real and God does punish people. But are those the reasons we obey?

    I'm not afraid of hell. I'm not going there.

    I welcome God's chastisement of me. The bible says that God chastens those whom He loves. Whenever God chastises me, I thank Him for it. He is telling me that He loves me.

    Jesus said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments." Obedience to God should be a sign that you love Him.

    If a person is walking the chalked line and trying to do all of the "thou shalt's" and trying to not do all of the "thou shalt not's" and his only motivation is to avoid hell and avoid making God angry, then I say that his efforts for are nothing.

    If you take food to the bereaved to score points with God and to balance out the points you lost in last night's fight with your spouse, then that act of charity is for nothing.

    Yes, we should fear and respect God. But out of love. Psalm 119 is a quite lengthy passage about the love of the commands of God.

    But to obey God's commands to keep Him from punishing you or to avoid hell is just grasping for eternal fire insurance. And I believe that there is no such thing.

     
  10. Pastor Larry

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    Thanks Scarlett for responding.

    Having a 10 month old (as of yesterday), I am interested in teaching him obedience. If he does it because he is scared to get his handsmacked, I am okay with that. The more he grows in maturity, the more I expect that will change.

    Having said that, I am always hesitant to make man's love the measuring stick for God's. To say, "What parent would want ... " assumes too much identity between God and man. We cannot judge God's love by what we as fallen parents would want.

    The question is, If these are not reasons to obey, why does Scripture present them as reasons to obey?

    Again, we cannot judge God by our desires or standards. God is the one who set these motivations in his word. Why should we disagree with them? I don't think love is omitted ... but neither is fear.

    I also have a hard time divorcing the "fear of God" from being scared. I think both are there.

     
  11. Scarlett O.

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    Yes, it will change. And sooner than you think or are prepared for it. :flower:

    Parents have to smack little children's hands and spank them and for older children ground them and take away privileges. That's part of parenting.

    But also part of christian parenting is teaching children to obey because it is the right thing to do based on love of their family and love of Godliness.

    There will come a day very soon that your child is not in your presence and he will say to himself, "Daddy's not here to smack my hand.....he won't see me doing such-and-such."

    That attitude follows children into their teenage years and they have the attitude that "What the old man doesn't know won't hurt him."

    That's all a normal part of life. And for the protection of the child, I believe that christian parents should be more proactive in the discipline (not the punishment) of the child, if not to prevent these things from happening, at least to curb them a great deal.

    Involving the child in setting the boundaries (of course, you ultimately make them), discussing why the boundaries are their in the first place and allow the child to explain the boundaries to his favorite stuffed animal (for their benefit and your amusement), practicing what to do when tempted by various misbehaviors (as silly as that sounds, it works), and have periodic family discussions that remind everyone of the boundaries and why they are there.


    I don't believe that for the christian that they (hell and being scared of God's punishing us) are reasons to obey God.

    Jesus said that we are members of the body (the church) and that the gates of hell can't prevail against us.

    God's punishments are loving chastisements. Sometimes they are very harsh chastisements and are unpleasant to endure. But His love for us outweighs His disappointment in us and His need, stemming from the fact that He is Holy and we are not, to remold us and sometimes break us.

    For the unbeliever, hell and God's wrath are reasons to turn to God in the first place. We are saved. Saved from what? Hell and God's Judgment.


    Pastor Larry, christians are not to be scared of God. I don't mean an arrogant "He doesn't scare me" type of attitude. And our lack of being scared or frightened doesn't mean that we approach God with frivolity. We approach Him with solemnity.

    How can we be scared of Someone who protects us with His feathers and His wings? (Psalm 91:4)

    How can we be scared of our God who, the bible says out of his love for us, is our takes care of us completely as Rescuer from all trouble, whether from the devil or from our own making. (Psalm 91:14-15)

    I believe that for the christian, the fear of God is to revere Him and to be in awe of Him at all times. Hebrew 12:28-29 says that christians are part of an unshakable kingdom. A perfect kingdom that God is preparing even as a consuming fire. And our response to Him is to revere Him and be in perfect awe of Him and to be gracious (thankful).

    You know what does scare me, Pastor Larry? Myself.

    I scare me. When I let God down and am a poor testimony for Him. That scares me. Not because I am afraid that He will do something terrible to me and he just might. But because I am sorely afraid of hurting Someone and offending Someone who is so Holy. I do not deserve to be saved. I do not deserve for Him to love me nor lovingly chasten me.

    But He does. And I find Him to be great and I try to serve Him with reverence, soberness, solemnity, awe, and gratitude.

    Fear is acknowledging that God is Holy and I am a worm.

    Fear of God changes our behavior. It makes us submissive to Him and it makes us love His commandments and welcome the times that He must break us or remold us.

    We are not frightened, but we are in awe. We are not scared, but we do revere.
     
  12. Helen

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    I agree very much with Scarlett's post, and that is after having raised six and taught many, many more.

    The one thing I would add is that, when confronted with angelic beings which did terrify the beholders, we see in the Bible that the response is always, "Fear not...."

    A child who learns to obey out of fear is going to be set on a path of rebellion that both he/she and the parents may find cause to regret the rest of their lives.

    When I was in college, I took a psychology class where we were working with pigeons in a lab. Their cages were set up so that the feeders would work -- in this one experiment -- only sporadically and without any rhyme or reason. For very few 'rewards' the pigeons would try continuously.

    I remembered this when I was a parent. Rewarding and praising the kids far more often brought about the good behavior and habits I desired than punishing them did. Punishments had their places, but the kids knew ahead of time what they would be and what behavior was going to reap them. It took a combination of rewards and punishments, but the rewards were the most important, by far.
     
  13. Pastor Larry

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    Lots of human experience will never outweigh the fact that God uses fear as a motivation for obedience, even for Christians. Paul said he feared falling short, being disqualified. He said "knowing the terror of tbe Lord, we persuade men."

    To me, that is a hands down case that fear is a proper motivating factor in obedience. God uses it.
     
  14. npetreley

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    Where's the "why" part of your answers? Why would it have been better? The answer isn't obvious, as some might think. Indeed, I will gladly explain why it would NOT have been better if you'll kindly answer the whole questions and not just say "yes".
     
  15. MB

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    Hi Npetreley;
    Cleverness with words doesn't pan out with me. Only scripture is what counts, when we prove a thing to be real. Which is why after reading it closely, I didn't answer it, at all.
    MB
     
  16. whatever

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    No, because God's glory would have not been seen in His mercy and grace.

    No, because we would have never seen God's glory in His mercy and grace.

    Yes, it changes our view of God's glory if we think He is only doing the best that He can.

    Yes, yes/no, and no

    Everything must go according to God's plan, even if it goes against His wishes. (That sentence is bound to get 'em going, if nothing else does.)

    So that God's plan would be fulfilled.

    No

    So that God's plan would be fulfilled.

    OK, teacher, how did I do? And is this going to be on the final exam?
     
  17. Benjamin

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. skypair

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    There are many variables, npe -- like if Adam and Eve were unable to procreate (were "as the angels" Mt 22:30) it still might have been better for God not to have to deal with sin and condemn anyone.

    If we were here, it would have been GREAT from our perspective!

    Sure. Don't you think it is "some" about you? You're asking these questions, aren't you?

    Sure -- but not before He decided that there would BE a creation.

    He knew the possibility, sure. He'd already given one creation, angels, a free will and saw where that led, right? My mom used to say (and I believe her) that God was showing the faithful angels through our creation that God was not only just but was merciful -- that He hadn't just booted Lucifer our without cause and, likely mercy.

    No. I stick with "before He designed."

    God could ALWAYS have created things differently. And in fact, He does even now intervene into the affairs of men to accomplish His purposes!

    Because in our lives, "forbidden fruit" is there for the choosing. Never thought about it before but I wonder why Adam didn't take Eve straight to the "tree of life" for healing rather than hide??

    God has a permissive will -- even Calvinists agree. And permissive will is just another expression of "free will."

    It would appear that Satan chose to go there and God did not restrain him. It was all part of the "test" that every dispensation of God has. And until a man is indwelt by God (HS), man cannot pass the tests. But note -- the church passes the test and so is raptured not having to face the tests of the trib and MK -- again.

    skypair
     
  19. npetreley

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    Well, if my own answers are correct, then you got 100%. How could God demonstrate His power, mercy, grace, righteousness, etc., without sin entering the world? If all things exist for God's Glory, then sin must also exist otherwise He cannot make the fullness of His glory known to His creation.

    Is this opinion or Bible? It is Biblical.

    Therefore the world would not be a better place without Adam's disobedience.
     
  20. johnp.

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    Hello npetreley.

    The choice to take the fruit was God's not Eve's. Rom 11:32 For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all. :)

    john.
     

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