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Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by quantumfaith, Jan 12, 2011.
For all to peruse and consider:
Thanks for sharing. I wish we had more posts like the ones you provide.
I have not read the entire article, yet.
Are the illustrations suggesting a person's Soul consists of the mind, emotion, and will?
Not sure if that is the point or not, rather, we are "multi-faceted" creatures I think is the point. I have only read it once, but was quite impressed.
Well, I don't have time to go over everything I read on that link. I want to look at a few.
The charts say God CANNOT coerce.
to compel by force, intimidation, or authority, esp. ....
As God being in authority, can he call man a sinner that is going to Hell, without intimidation to the desires of mans will?
When it comes to that moment when God as judge will place a sinner in Hell, does he as God have that right to do so, before asking the sinner if he can do it, or is this forcing his authority?
Indeed it does...
So tell me...when Matt 26 says..
How can the human spirit will, when the will is not in the spirit, but rather in the soul?
The following is what the author says, do with it what you will.
"Remember that God has self-limited Himself to operate in conjunction with man's responses. He will not violate or interfere with the volitional freedom of choice that He has granted to man by creation. God desires a voluntary response whereby man will receive Jesus Christ. He solicits such through the influence of man's mind and emotions, but He does not coerce man to consent with the will. Such would forestall a genuine faith-love relationship, for love cannot be coerced. Those who proclaim the gospel should likewise respect the choice of man and not attempt to force decisions through psychologically manipulated invitations and evangelistic methods, for such can develop hardened hearts in a pattern of resistance to the gospel."
A very well written and mentally stimulating article.
However, the fundamental question was not answered.
What causes one person to accept and the other to reject?
He makes a tremendous case for prevenient grace.
But no matter how much influence the Spirit of God exerts, some reject Him.
One might say, this rejection is because of the choice of the man's free will.
And on the surface this seems like a sufficient answer.
But when one digs a little, important questions become evident.
If, as in the non-reformed understanding, God is no respecter of persons; then the Spirit must deal equally with these two persons.
If He does this, then what made the receiver more receptive than the rejecter?
Is the one intuitively wiser than the other?
If so, then his wisdom gave him a "leg up".
He could say, I am saved because I was smart enough to believe the gospel.
If God does not deal with these two equally.
Then is God unjust by giving to one greater influence?
For instance, a person born in the "bible-belt" as opposed to China.
Also, a second difficulty with the non-reformed view is evident.
The non-reformed view vehemently maintains that, faith is not an act of effort on man's part.
But consider that belief by definition is something known.
You must know something before it is believed.
Thinking, considering, meditating etc. are all actions of the mind.
Before the will can assent the mind must operate.
The actions of the mind cannot be separated from the will..
Romans 8:6,7 states,
6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so,
How can the mind of man, which is hostile toward God, move the man to God. The carnal mind is active enmity against God.
This carnal mind is not only unable, but also unwilling to come to God.
One might say, "but the mind set on the Spirit can, here is prevenient grace".
Remember prevenient grace is simply the influencing of the Spirit.
How can one set his mind on the Spirit?
5For those who live according to the flesh(John 3, that which is born of the flesh is flesh) set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit(John 3, that which is born of the Spirit is spirit) set their minds on the things of the Spirit.
The new birth,ie. regeneration, is absolutely essential before a man can set the carnal mind on the Spirit.
Consider Matthew Henry's comment on these passages.
"The carnal man may, by the power of divine grace, be made subject to the law of God, but the carnal mind never can; this must be broken and expelled. See how wretchedly the corrupt will of man is enslaved to sin; as far as the carnal mind prevails, there is no inclination to the law of God; therefore wherever there is a change wrought it is by the power of God's grace, not by the freedom of man's will.
The mind must, as necessity, act before the will believes.
The Word of God is plain in regard to the carnal mind.
It cannot, because it is hostile, think properly of Christ.
Therefore, the will cannot give assent; without a change "wrought" by the power of God's grace.
The answer is faith or belief.
Two people hear the gospel, one believes it, one does not.
The man who believes will be drawn to accept Christ for two reasons. He will see his lost condition and see he is in danger of hell. He will also be influenced by the love of Christ who died in his place and suffered a horrible death to save him. These factors will influence his will to accept Christ.
The unbeliever is indifferent. He sees no proof of this, he is not worried. He believes a believer as foolish and superstitious. Or, he might believe in hell, but believes he can merit his own salvation. He believes himself self-sufficient and in no need of a Savior. His will is not swayed.
What you believe can influence your will. If you are in a theater and someone shouts "Fire!" you can tell who believes because they will leap up and run to the exits. Their will is to escape.
The unbeliever will probably shout at you to sit down and shut up. Their will is to see the movie without interruption.
I've been thinking (a dangerous thing). If God overcame your rebellion, made you suddenly love him when you didn't want to, saved you in spite of your love of sin; if you suddenly realized, Wow this is crazy. I didn't want to change, but I'm changed. I loved sin, but for some reason, I now love God; if you said, this is not what I wanted, I fought this all the way, but I couldn't help myself--
Would you be mad at God for violating your free will? Or would you be glad?
If you had a brother who was lost, would you have any problem asking God to save him, to change him, even if it meant violating his free will?
Or would you pray, Lord please save him, but if it means violating his free will, forget it. I want him to love you willingly.
I know, I know, but indulge me here.
What Arminians say is not what they pray. They are greatly inconsistent. "Lord overrule his rebellious heart --make it tender toward You. I pray that You will draw him toward Yourself. May he forsake his evil ways by your power AMEN."
God is Sovereign in their prayers -- but not in their preaching/teaching. That's why all true Christians are Calvinists on their knees as the old saying goes.
Uhhhh....Bro. Rippon, isn't this a "nono" according to BB rules. You seem to be implying that the only ones going to heaven are those who hold to the DoG/Calvinism model of scripture.
God has to be the One who breaks the heart, "till up the hardened earth"(heart), cause them to see their lost condition. God starts and finishes the salvation process. However, one must be willing to accept it....I know y'all hate that! CHRISTians are CHRISTians because of what Jesus did for them and not their theological thought process. It is by the blood of Jesus Christ that I am what I am by the grace of God. I am not a CHRISTian because I hold closer to Arminian(sp?) teaching than DoG, and vice versa. God saved me by His Son's blood, He directs my foot steps, and His Grace will lead me home. DoG, Arminianism(sp?), Peligiansim(sp?) or "semi", RCC, Church of Christ teachings won't take me home!! It is by His Grace that I am saved.....that Grace was/is His Son crucified on the cross at Calvary!! Praise His sweet name!!
And for the record, I do pray that God will cause a "Godly sorrow" to set up in my lost wife's life, per 2 Cor. 7:10. I ask God to trouble her water and that she will dive in when He does it. God has to start the drawing before anyone will come. Once they start drawing closer to Him, I believe He will show them what they must do in order to be saved. This is not inconsistant with any "A" doctrine that I know of.
Here's my story. God "drawed" me for years, but because of pride, I withstood the "call". Then one day I heard a sermon on the radio as I was driving home from work, in Dan. ch. 3 about the three Hebrew men. It caused me to take a look at my life and see where I was headed, and it didn't look good. Right there, is where God really began drawing me. I would think, "If I do this, He will save me", and I was still lost. I would then think, "If I stop that, He will save me", and again, I was still lost. I was trying to reach Him, but I didn't know how to. I began to really get scared, wondering if I had sinned away the day of grace. I was trying to rely on myself, and not God, for salvation. Then one night at work, on May 24th, 2007, God reached down and snatched me from the gates of hell, poured His Son's blood all over my soul, gave me the best robe He had(robe of righteousness), put new shoes on my feet, put a ring on my finger, and killed the fatted calf and rejoiced because His wandering child had came home!! I have never been the same since!! But if I would have rejected the call, He would not have showed me what I must do in ordered to be saved......I had to quit being dependent on "self", and dependent "solely" on Him. And the next lost person that gets saved will have to do the same.......now, how's that inconsistent with what we "A" preach and teach??
i am I am's!!
Many millions of people who never get saved come to hate sin. An alcoholic will say, "I used to love drinking, but no more. I lost my wife and kids, I lost my job, I"ve lost the respect of everyone who knows me, my health is failing, I can't do this anymore."
Sin itself has changed the hearts and wills of millions of people who never get saved. To deny this is to deny reality.
You didn't read carefully.(Are you kin to B4L?)
I said every true Christian is a Calvinist on their knees. That means that a lot of true Christians are certainly not Calvinists in their sermons,doctrines and conversations on the BB. But when it comes to prayer --all true Christians turn into Calvinists. I have never heard a prayer extolling the "free-will" of an individual.
C.H.Spurgeon,Herman Hokesema,B.B.Warfield,Bavinck and others have made the same observation long before I have.
Besides,I get sick and tired of folks periodically trotting out the line about Calvinists (and in particular --me) saying that we think only Calvinists are the elect etc. That's trash. I have repeated myself until I am blue in the face from saying all true Christians are glory-bound. All true Christians are elect. Got that?
Drawing is always to complete union with Christ. It's not a partial approach. Go through John 6 in your Bible meditatively.
Rippon, this a ridiculous argument. We non-cals do indeed pray for lost friends and otherwise to be influenced and moved by the Holy Spirit, we pray that WE might be instruments to move them Godward, but yes we do believe that God, by His sovereign choice will not override their rejection of Him. I see nothing of your claim of inconsistency.
You believe that God will not override their rejection of Him?! Huh? All people in the natural reject the Lord. Non-Cals and Calvinists alike pray that the Lord indeed will overpower their rebellion and bring them to Himself. Do you really disagree with this? Honestly?
Do you know anyone like you just described?
Your comments are based on emotional feelings.
You say, I "feel" this to be true.
To avoid these feelings based arguments please address the scriptural reasons for my comments.
If you want to know how I "feel", read Kenneth Keathley's description of the ambulatory model, you obviously will not agree, but just maybe you will understand.
Maybe its time to pull out the old Free-willers prayer by Spurgeon.
To use your illustration.
The warning is sounded, FIRE.
A man hears the warning.
Now his mind must process this information, this is called thinking.
As he "thinks", ie. uses his mind, a decision is made.
He has decided to believe the warning.
And now the "will" moves the man to escape.
This is the way all men are moved to belief.
The problem of inability in "getting saved" is not in the will.
The problem is this.
The Bible tells us man cannot, that he is utterly unable to start the above process because his mind is "set on the flesh" or "carnal".
7For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. 8Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. (Romans 8:7,8)
His mind is inwardly and sometimes outwardly "hostile" to God.
Therefore, this man must receive a "new mind" if he is going to be able to "think" properly toward Christ.
This is called the "new birth" or regeneration.
Now lets return to our illustration.
A man chosen by God is given a new birth, regenerated.
He then hears the Gospel.
His new mind processes ie. thinks about what he has heard.
He decides I believe what I have heard.
Now his "will" moves him toward God.
Now consider that Jesus described the "new birth" as the wind.
8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit."
A man cannot discern when the "new birth" takes place, but he will know after the fact the Holy Spirit has been there.
This man with a God given, God birthed new mind can now "think" right.
And right thinking leads to right choosing.