Theology of God

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by gb93433, Jul 11, 2003.

  1. gb93433

    gb93433
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    What are your thoughts on the issue of God as being a responsive God. The idea that He is truly a responsive person to the needs of His people.

    What I am wondering is if we haven't gotten it all wrong over the years. I am conviced it is. But when I think about a God who cares so much for me that he hears me and answers my prayers then I can't help but think that God is responsive much like a faithful parent would be to his children.

    I am beginning to believe that the idea that God does not change in the idea that God never changes in His character; He is consistent in who He is and who He will be. He is consistently my caretaker and source of blessing. I believe anyone who seriously prays knows that God is his source of strength.

    Some other thoughts I have is that if God is not responsive and we are robots and all is predetermined by God alone then where is our responsibility and fellowship. We are simnply robots and it wil make no difference.

    I believe that when is all said and done that God in his sovereignty created man with a free will -- the ability to make choices. His choice of us gives us the gospel. But our choice determines heaven or hell for eternity.

    I see God as giving us gifts and abilities that He has given to us to glorify Him. But we can choose just as Judas did to either glorify Him or not.

    I see it much like a cow in the pasture. The cow can eat wherever she likes within the field. But it is the farmer who placed her in the field.

    What are your thoughts?
     
  2. Dr. Bob

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    Not biblical, but you have the right to believe it.

    I believe in a sovereign God and dead man so that any "responsiveness" God might have to us is to the faith He gives us to repent/believe.

    The ONLY thing that pleases God is my faith, and that faith is "not of yourselves; not of works lest any man should boast."
     
  3. John Wells

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    As it is written:
    “There is no one righteous, not even one;
    there is no one who understands,
    no one who seeks God.
    All have turned away,
    they have together become worthless;
    there is no one who does good,
    not even one.”
    (Romans 3:10-12)

    Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin. (Romans 3:20)

    he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, (Titus 3:5)

    But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.” (Hebrews 10:38)

    For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” (1 Peter 3:12)

    Romans 3:10 does not conflict with the many instances (like 1 Peter 3:12) where the Bible speaks of “the righteous.” Those who are called “righteous” by God are those who “live by faith.” (Heb 10:38). But no one is righteous by what they do (Rom 3:10, Rom 3:20) In other words, just as Dr. Bob said! :D
     
  4. Baptist Believer

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    I agree with everything you wrote. Calvinists won't agree with you, but I think you are biblical.
     
  5. Sola-Scriptura

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    Then Christs ministry on earth was all just reacting to chance? He healed and did miracles, not off the cuff, but at specific times for specific reasons. Was Christ sweating that maybe circumstances wouldn't work out for the events of His life and death to happen the way they should?
    How can prophecy be fulfilled exactly if a sovereign God isn't in complete control? What if the Romans didn't "choose" to crucify Christ? What if No one decided to "choose" to believe in Him? You can't think this way and then say that God just watched the video of history before it all happened and then decided what He would do to react to our "sovereign will".
    Let's not compare the remarkable plan of God to a cow in the pasture. By the way, how can God be responsive to His people (as you say) if He is not allowed to handle that cow directly by sovereign, free activity? I guess the cows got smart and put up a pretty big fence to keep Him from violating their will. As for me, I was born with spiritual Mad Cow disease, so thank God He chose to heal what I could not.
     
  6. John Wells

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  7. Jeffrey H

    Jeffrey H
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    With due respect, I must ask:

    Did Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross purpose to actually save men/women given to Him by His Father or did it merely make it possible for us to be saved? Do you believe man has enough "goodness" in him to choose Christ?

    If Jesus died simply to make it "possible" for us to be saved, then we are all in trouble. In our depraved and sinful state, we do not have the ability to choose Christ on our own. God is serious about salvation and has purposed that it will be carried out to His elect. He did not leave salvation to "chance."
     
  8. gb93433

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    Certainly I believe God is in control. But as to what extent I am not sure. That is the reason I am asking for your thoughts.

    I would not question that all faith comes from God. But is it not our responsibility to respond in faith to His grace and believe the good news? Does He not give adequate faith for us to move mountains? If He does then why is so little being exercised. I believe it is not because of Him, but because of us and our unwillingness. I don't think we can place that blame on God.

    Another question I have is about Judas. Did God not give him faith to believe? I believe that Jesus was adequate for him to have faith to believe, but he chose not to. Then we see the result of his deed to not believe. He hung himself.

    It seems that Jesus regularly called people to repent and come follow Him. If it was all God then it would seem that people are robots and not free to think and do wrong or right. God is not willing that any should perish. I can't think of any scriptural support that God created man to send some to hell and some to heaven. If that were the case and all evangelism was not necessary, it would seem to go against what He has called us to do.

    If man were left to his own devices he would degenerate and act worse than animals. But God in His wisdom gave us Christ. Salvation is not from me but from God. There is nothing I can do to save myself. But my salvation is secured by Christ. But my responsibility is to believe and go in faith.

    I don't think it is salvation I am trying to discuss but the issue of so many times in the MT God is written as being passive. He uses other people to destroy nations, etc. Even Proverbs teaches principles about how to live life and the kind of life that is blessed.

    How would you interpret 2 Kings 20:1-11, "20:1 In those days Hezekiah became mortally ill. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him and said to him, "Thus says the Lord, `Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live.' " Then he turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, saying, "Remember now, O Lord, I beseech You, how I have walked before You in truth and with a whole heart and have done what is good in Your sight." And Hezekiah wept bitterly. Before Isaiah had gone out of the middle court, the word of the Lord came to him, saying, "Return and say to Hezekiah the leader of My people, `Thus says the Lord, the God of your father David, "I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will heal you. On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord. "I will add fifteen years to your life, and I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for My own sake and for My servant David's sake." ' " Then Isaiah said, "Take a cake of figs." And they took and laid [it] on the boil, and he recovered. Now Hezekiah said to Isaiah, "What will be the sign that the Lord will heal me, and that I shall go up to the house of the Lord the third day?" Isaiah said, "This shall be the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do the thing that He has spoken: shall the shadow go forward ten steps or go back ten steps?" So Hezekiah answered, "It is easy for the shadow to decline ten steps; no, but let the shadow turn backward ten steps." Isaiah the prophet cried to the Lord, and He brought the shadow on the stairway back ten steps by which it had gone down on the stairway of Ahaz.

    I would really like to know how you would interpret verses 1-6.

    We know from Church history that a number of people strayed from the faith during persecution. Then later repented. Did not God give them enough faith?
    If a man beats his wife did not God give him enough self control to keep from doing that?

    Where does our part begin and God's stop. God gives us the Holy Spirit but we know that people don't listen. I just can't believe that it is God's fault but the choice man makes to reject God.
     
  9. Baptist Believer

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    I read the sermon carefully at lunch today.

    Thank you for your reference.

    I am convinced that Spurgeon was mistaken. There is no doubt he was a great orator, but I've heard and researched all of these arguments before.
     
  10. John Wells

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    Can you elaborate on a mistake or two with scriptural support? Thanks for taking the time to read it BTW!
     
  11. Sola-Scriptura

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    gb93433 said:
    John 17:12
    While I was with them in the world,[2] I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept;[3] and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
    Read all of John 17. Only those the Father gives to the Son are saved. The scripture was fulfilled by the damnation of Judas:
    John 13:18
    "I do not speak concerning all of you. I know whom I have chosen; but that the Scripture may be fulfilled, "He who eats bread with Me has lifted up his heel against Me.'
    Psalm 41:9
    Even my own familiar friend in whom I trusted,Who ate my bread, Has lifted up his heel against me.
    In regard to the Hezekiah passage, first of all this is not about salvation but physical life. However, it is just like the preaching of the gospel. The declaration of coming judgement goes out to the sinner, repentance takes place through the grace of God, and blessing follows. Not only is the salvation of that sinner by God's sovereign will, but the means that salvation comes is also by his sovereign will. (Preaching, conviction, repentance and faith)
     
  12. John Wells

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    Here are a couple more quotes from Spurgeon. This first one is one of my favorite!

     
  13. superdave

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    great quotes, spurgeon really understood the theology of Salvation, and a great example of why a Calvinist can also be concerned about the lost!

    That first quote reminds me of one of my favorite axioms from the IT industry

    "2 does not equal 3, even for very large values of 2"
     
  14. CubeX

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    I'm only half way sure about biblical, but right now, I think you are correct, or at least close to it. Study about what you've posted by yourself. You'll begin to be able to point out the what is and what isn't about what you are saying.

    -CubeX
     

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