The Sovereign Wills

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by NetChaplain, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    No worthy student of the Bible would question that God has a sovereign purpose or that all things are working toward the realization of that purpose. But it must be acknowledged as well from such passages as Rom 12:1, 2; Gal 5:16; Eph 4:30; 1 Thess 5:19 and 1 John 1:9 that the appeal is to the human will, with every implication present which might establish the truth that, in the divine plan, the human will determines the whole course of the believer’s life.

    The failure at this point with high Calvinists arises from the fact that, in their zeal to defend the doctrine of divine sovereignty, they do not recognize how the very sovereignty of God in its outworking utilizes the human will as its instrument, not, however, by any form of coercion (rather by “goodness” Rom 2:4—NC), but by that form of persuasion which enlightens and engenders holy desires to which the will may respond and by which it may be motivated. Here it must be asserted with all possible force that when a decision is made regarding some step in the spiritual life, even under the most powerful, impelling inducements which God may impart, that action of the human will is sovereign and free in its own choice

    This same procedure characterizes the whole undertaking when a soul is saved through faith in Christ. It matters nothing that the human will has no power in itself to accept the Savior. The heart must be moved completely by the Holy Spirit or no choice of Christ is made; but just the same when the choice is made it is not due to coercion but to the will acting in its sovereign freedom. None can doubt the implication in the text which avers: “Whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely” (Rev 22:17).

    It is misleading to assert that “whosoever God wills may come.” It nevertheless is true, but not in the same sense in which high Calvinists have presented it, namely, that whosoever God compels will come—rather it should be stated thus: that whosoever God calls with an efficacious call, which call is a persuasion sufficient to guarantee the determined choice, will, of his own sovereign determination, come.

    Let it not be supposed that this interpretation of an important Biblical doctrine lends any support to the Arminian notion that unregenerated men—because of some hypothetical, universal impartation of “common grace”—may at any time, under any circumstances, and by virtue of their own unaided vision and determination accept Christ as Savior if they will to do so. Only tragic misconceptions have been the fruit of an extreme Calvinism which makes no place in its reckoning for the inherent, constitutional necessity of immediate divine action upon the human will before the right choice can be made at all.

    The spiritual life is in all instances presented as the result of the free choice of the believer’s will; but this doctrine must not be left to stand alone. Another doctrine of even more vital significance is the truth that the will must be moved by God.

    - L S Chafer
     
  2. convicted1

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    I see you, also, have misapplied Rev. 22:17. The command isn't to everyone, but those which are athirst or thirsty.


    Look at it like this. You have just finished drinking a gallon of water. All of a sudden someone offers you a nice glass of cold water. They say you can have it. You say "no thanks" because you're not thirsty, because you're basically waterlogged from just drinking a gallon of water. The call in Rev. 22:17 isn't to "any and all w/o exception", but rather to the thirsty.

    Blessed are they which hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled(Matt.5:6).

    The goats are too waterlogged be enjoying polluted water. That's the water they prefer. Jesus told the Pharisees "Ye will not come to me that ye may have life"(John 5:40). They had no desire for the water Jesus had/has. They kept drinking their polluted water and were happy and content with it.
     
    #2 convicted1, Feb 25, 2014
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  3. JonC

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    I think that the “whosoever will” part covers those who are “not thirsty” (as they do not will). Lewis Chafer is being very scriptural here, in my opinion – God does not save men while men are yet unwilling, but works through the will of men to effect salvation.
     
  4. convicted1

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    It states "let whosoever will" let him came and drink...I believe it's addressing the sheep, imo. God changes the unwilling to willing. He also sets up that thirst that only He can quench...
     
  5. JonC

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    I understand where you’re coming from. I don’t see that passage as stating exactly the same thing, but the subject either way is those who will, let them take the water freely – so it is not an issue at all in my mind. I believe Chafer was a Calvinist more along the lines of Spurgeon than MacArthur when it comes to the “whosoever” part.
     
  6. convicted1

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    Wasn't CHS a five pointer and JM a four pointer, rejecting the "L"???
     
  7. JonC

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    I could never make up my mind about Spurgeon. He often stated a belief in all five points, but his definition of limited atonement does not always square with the way that many define limited atonement. From what I have read of him, his explanations typically revolved around redemption (he affirmed a general call which he didn't believe was empty, but also that God called the elect with a special call). John MacArthur, I believe, holds to limited atonement.
     
  8. NetChaplain

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    Hi C1 - Thanks for your reply, and your comment concerning the practice of the goats is interesting, but I see it that the "whosoever" is a proclamation during the time when Christ and the Church are in the final eternal marriage (Rev 19:9) state and therefore is in reference to only those who will be in the eternal state of the New Jerusalem (21:24).

    The "tree of life" (22:2) and "water of life" will be used only by the saved.
     
    #8 NetChaplain, Feb 26, 2014
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  9. NetChaplain

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    Also, I believe the offer for salvation is to the world (John 3:17), thus mankind is called (as in "many called" Matt 22:14, not as in "the called" Rom 8:28). It's also axiomatic in Scripture that God is omniscient and therefore foreknows everyone's choices even before creation and thus, foreknew most of mankind would not choose Him—Matt 7:13, 14.

    Whether one can or cannot have the desire to choose God on their own (which may be in the “drawing”), I believe when the choice is made, God's "drawing" (John 6:44) of one to Christ is without failure ("shall come" 6:37), and is permanent (6:39; Rom 11:29).

    Concerning Judas, he fell from his “part” of Apostleship only, not from the faith (Acts 1:25), “For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him” (John 6:64; 13:11).
     
  10. convicted1

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    Being staunchly amil, I disagree with this assessment...but I digress.

    The "Tree of Life" was there in the Garden and was a picture of Christ. This Tree came and died for us. This Tree is coming again to gather us to take us Home. He has that Living water that when we drink it, we shall never thirst again, seeing He quenched that thirst.

    So I see Rev. 22:17 as an all emcompassing scripture, and not limited to the "millienun"(sp?)
     
  11. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    The Millennium ended at the last resurrection in 20:12, after the old heaven and earth "fled away" in verse 11. This is when "the rest of the dead lived" again also with eternal bodies, to be cast into the "lake of fire" (lived-- resurrected--); verse 20:5
     
  12. convicted1

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    I just don't hold to the book of Revelation as being in chronological order. Much like Daniel wasn't either. So I haven't seen enough evidence that chapter 22 chronologically follows chapter 20. I could be wrong, but I don't think so...but I could be?
     
  13. Yeshua1

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    he was a 4 not 5 pointer, as he held to Unlimited atonement, as jesus actually died for sins of all sinners to have ever lived!

    excellent systematic theology, as least from my perspective of a Dispy cal, would agree with him more so then even Dr John!
     

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