I, as a non-Calvinist, affirm that God has permissively decreed the origin of evil. By this I mean, as Edwards states, that "God has established a world in which sin will indeed necessarily come to pass by God's permission, but not by his 'positive agency.'" This means there are two separate and distinct decrees of God. 1. Permissive Decrees: those things which come to pass apart from God's positive agency or direct involvement (such as the sin of man). These are things He foreknows will certainly come to pass, but is not the one who brings them to pass by His effort, involvement, intervention or agency. He may not find pleasure in these things, but, nonetheless, allows them for a greater purpose. 2. Decretive Decrees: those things which come to pass as a direct result of God's positive agency or direct involvement (such as the incarnation of Jesus). These are things He foreknows will certainly come to pass, but not simply because he KNOWS of it beforehand, but instead because He has determined to bring it to pass by His effort, intervention and direct involvement. Nothing can thwart a decree of God, whether permissive or decretive, because both are based in the certainty of God's omniscience. Thus, the affirmation of God decreeing all things to come to pass mustn't be understood as meaning that evil exists "because of God's decree." Instead, we must understand which decree is meant. This is why CLARITY on this subject is so vitally important. Too often on this BB clarity is sacrificed for the sake of winning a point or sticking it to the opponent, but to what end? Is impugning the holiness of God, even unintentionally, in the effort to win a debate justified? Can we simply be clear with our use of terms when discussing such serious matters as God's holiness? Can we all agree to refrain from saying anything that could possibly be misinterpreted as blaming God for the sin and evil in this world? Is that really too much to ask? Is that even a dividing point between Calvinistic and non-Calvinistis Baptists? I don't think so. I think is should be something on which we all agree, if we put down our axes and reason together as brethren.