"The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers"

Discussion in 'Calvinism/Arminianism Debate' started by thatbrian, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. thatbrian

    thatbrian
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    Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. 3And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.
    Paul is saying a few things in this passage. He first is saying that they don't use gimmicks or tricks to convey the message of the gospel. In today's church there is almost no other way that they operate. Everyone from raffles to pastors "flying" in on a zipline. It's nuts! New Spring church began it's Easter service a few years back, by playing, Highway to Hell, an AC DC song. (I can't tell you how sick that makes me)

    All if this is done in the name of "reaching the lost". Paul will have none of it. He will not even use eloquent speech as a way to attract or proclaim the gospel. The gospel is proclaimed and it is either heard or not. Paul knows that he has no control over that, and he also likely knows that gimmicks can make false coverts.

    Paul knows that there is no need for gimmicks as the gospel is perfectly clear. A child could understand it! Anyone could easily understand it. What stands in the way is the not the message but the eyes and ears to see and hear it.

    Who is it that gives sight to the blind and hearing to the deaf?
     
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  2. SovereignGrace

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    Hallelujah! This is oh so good on many levels. People think the gospel isn't enough to attract ppl any more. They want to have pizza parties, puppet shows, dance routines, &c to entice ppl. If the gospel can not entice them, then making an inanimate object move its mouth surely won't.

    Satan is the god of this world and has blinded unbelievers as you so eloquently stated the OP's title. I have been saying that the last few weeks on here...banging that drum.
     
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  3. thatbrian

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    When your starting point is that man is capable of responding to the gospel, and that he also desires to, you will justify all kinds of stuff.

    "The ground we have in common with unbelievers is not the Bible, but our common needs, hurts, and interests as human beings. You cannot start with a text expecting the unchurched to be fascinated by it. You must first capture their attention, and then move them to the truth of God's Word." Rick Warren Purpose Driven Life
    The reality is, God must both enable and draw.
     
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  4. thatbrian

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    This kind of thinking is pervasive in the church, and Rick Warren is largely responsible for the error.

    "It is my deep conviction that anybody anybody can be won to Christ if you discover the felt needs to his or her heart." - Rick Warren
     
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  5. Internet Theologian

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    "The ground we have in common with unbelievers is not the Bible, but our common needs, hurts, and interests as human beings. You cannot start with a text expecting the unchurched to be fascinated by it. You must first capture their attention, and then move them to the truth of God's Word." Rick Warren Purpose Driven Life
    ...because many like him no longer believe in the power of the Word, nor the transforming power of the Gospel (no evidence of salvation) but in their own assumed wisdom.

    Furthermore it is not that people are 'unchurched' it is that they are 'unregenerate'. It isn't that they need to be put 'in a building' but place 'in Christ', and no man can do that.
     
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  6. thatbrian

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    Amen to both points.

    Unbelief that God's Word actually can accomplish what He says it can is part of the problem.

    Butts in seats = money in the till, and the church growth movement burns though huge amounts of cash. Stunts and gimmicks are very expensive.
     
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  7. thatbrian

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    I just noticed that you had started a thread similar to this one. I didn't see it until just now. Sorry.
     
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  8. Internet Theologian

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    It's like saying "God, I saw what you had to say, so I decided that my wisdom, ways and words were more powerful than your methods. So what I did instead was..."
     
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  9. SovereignGrace

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    No problem whatsoever my Brother. The more the merrier I say.
     
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  10. Browner

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    Yes, of course, the title of this thread is true!
    Problem is ... Satan has also blinded many believers also.

    Try to understand that his #1 priority is to attack (I.e, deceive) those
    true believers who are the MOST threat to him and his purposes!

    And who might those true believers be?
     
  11. SovereignGrace

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    Believers are not blinded by Satan. Light & darkness does not mix.
     
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  12. Browner

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    In some spiritual matters, you are blinded.
    Wuz it by Satan working through your church leaders?
    The worst thing is to be brainwashed by your relatives and church!
    Extremely difficult to overcome!

    ALL spiritual Truth must come via a spiritual revelation from God.
    Simply because man is a total spiritual idiot, moron, etc.
    But, born-again believers are just slightly less so!
    Those baptized with the Holy Spirit are mucho less so.
     
  13. revmwc

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    Ditto
     
  14. DHK

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    There is a battle going on in every believer. When the believer is saved he still retains that old nature. He still lives in Satan's world, and on a daily basis he must fight and war against the rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places.
    Every time a believer gives into temptation he is blinded by Satan. Satan has deceived him.

    1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
    9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

    Those who believe they cannot be deceived by Satan, believe they cannot be blinded by the wiles of Satan as Eve was, are just that much more deceived in the walk in which they are now walking and are only preparing themselves for a drastic spiritual downfall.
    We, all as believers, are in a spiritual battle every day. The war, ultimately is won. But there are still battles to be fought along the way.
     
  15. Sapper Woody

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    There is a distinct difference between "gimmicks" and "promotions". Whether one is Calvinist or not, who's to say what God will use to draw sinners to him? Do promotions and gimmicks cause a lot of false converts? Probably. But if they were not going to accept Christ anyway, then who cares? It's about reaching as many lost as we can, and do our best to be the tool that God uses to bring someone to Him. Again, this hold true whether you are a Calvinist or not.

    So, I'll keep using bus promotions, giveaways, etc to draw as many people as I can to Christ. I'll use "gimmicks" to get them in to hear the Gospel, and let God sort out who are true converts. It's not about my numbers, good or bad. It's about being the vessel that God uses.

    Sent from my QTAQZ3 using Tapatalk
     
  16. SovereignGrace

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    Satan is trespassing in God's world. God still owns it, as He made it for His glory. He never gave Satan a deed either. Granted, he does have influence, as evidenced by all the wicked going on in the world.
     
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  17. SovereignGrace

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    I agree with this.

    He may be 'god' of this world, but this world is still God's. I see Satan more as a Satrap. He has rule over what the king has allotted him, but the king has rule over him. So, those God has allotted Satan control over, he rules. Yet, God is still King over him. What the King edicts, the Satrap(Satan) has to obey.

    I agree that we have a warfare, and that is a spiritual warfare.

    I don't agree with how you worded this Monsieur. Yes, believers sin. Yes we give into temptations from time-to-time. But that does not mean Satan has blinded us, has deceived us. We know we belong to God, but we do sin and stumble. But we are not blinded, or deceived, by Satan.

    Wonderful verses. I once preached a sermon called 'The two lions of the bible'. Satan, all he wants to do is scatter God's sheep while He still gathering them in. He is our adversary, but we have a Greater who fights our battles for us.

    Patently false view mon ami. I know Who I serve and when I get confronted by Satan, I let Him do my fighting for me. I can not defeat Satan by myself. I know this.I have tried and failed miserably. That is why I call upon Him to help me. I know how strong Satan is and he's much stronger than I. However, God is much more stronger than Satan, and He defeats him every time. By the way, we're giving Satan too much power here. We say that we're always confronted by Satan, but Satan is not omniscience like God. He does have his minions who confront us. But when we say Satan has given us a rough time, it really is one of his servants.

    Agree 100000000000% with this, Monsieur.
     
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  18. TCassidy

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    I guess I have to give some agreement to this concept. After all, some of the greatest gospel preaching stations in our nation's history have been skid row rescue missions preaching "Soup, Soap, and Salvation."

    I cut my preaching teeth at the Emmanuel Baptist Rescue Mission in downtown Los Angeles 40 years ago. We used a hot meal (Soup) to entice them in, then preached a simple Gospel message to them (Salvation) before feeding them. Then we offered a limited number of cots to sleep on while getting out of the weather, but first required them to shower (Soap) and gave them clean clothes to wear.

    I have no idea how many actual conversions occurred but a lot of lives were changed down on 5th street in LA.
     
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  19. revmwc

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    I said this several months ago in a post and many told me there was no way it was satan that God is Soveriegn and therefore satan could not be the god of this world. and we see:

    2 Corinthians 4:2-4King James Version (KJV)

    2 But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

    3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

    Interlinear=If yet and it is having been covered the well message of us in the ones being destroyed it is covered


    Thayer/Strongs

    Kalypto = to hide, veil, to hinder the knowledge of a thing

    Akin to Lepto=to steal, take away i.e. to take away with stealth.

    And Akin to krypto=to hide, conceal, to be hid, escape notice, metaph. To conceal (that it may not become known).

    4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

    Calvin on verse 4:

    "Whose minds the god of this world He intimates, that no account should be made of their perverse obstinacy. “They do not see,” says he, “the sun at mid-day, because the devil has blinded their understandings.” No one that judges rightly can have any doubt, that it is of Satan that the Apostle speaks. Hilary, as he had to do with Arians, who abused this passage, so as to make it a pretext for denying Christ’s true divinity, while they at the same time confessed him to be God, twists the text in this way — “God hath blinded the understandings of this world.” In this he was afterwards followed by Chrysostom, with the view of not conceding to the Manicheans their two first principles. (437) What influenced Ambrose does not appear. Augustine had the same reason as Chrysostom, having to contend with the Manicheans.

    We see what the heat of controversy does in carrying on disputes. Had all those men calmly read Paul’s words, it would never have occurred to any one of them to twist them in this way into a forced meaning; but as they were harassed by their opponents, they were more concerned to refute them, than to investigate Paul’s meaning. But what occasion was there for this? For the subterfuge of the Arians was childish — that if the devil is called the god of this world, the name of God, as applied to Christ, does not express a true, eternal, and exclusive divinity. For Paul says elsewhere, many are called gods, (1 Corinthians 8:5;) but David, on the other hand, sings forth — the gods of the nations are demons. (438) (Psalms 96:5.) When, therefore, the devil is called the god of the wicked, on the ground of his having dominion over them, and being worshipped by them in the place of God, what tendency has this to detract from the honor of Christ? And as to the Manicheans, this appellation gives no more countenance to the Manicheans, than when he is called the prince of this world. (John 14:30.) (439)"

    Ephesian 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.


    1 Thessalonians 2:18 Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us.



    Acts 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.


    Acts 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him
     
  20. kyredneck

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    Compare with:

    42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I came forth and am come from God; for neither have I come of myself, but he sent me.
    43 Why do ye not understand my speech? Even because ye cannot hear my word.
    44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father it is your will to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and standeth not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father thereof.
    47 He that is of God heareth the words of God: for this cause ye hear them not, because ye are not of God. Jn 8

    12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
    13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. Jn 1

    14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 1 Cor 2
     

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