Unconditional election and the decree of God

Discussion in 'Calvinism/Arminianism Debate' started by Herald, Sep 21, 2013.

  1. Herald

    Herald
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2011
    Messages:
    1,600
    Likes Received:
    0
    Donald K. McKim describes unconditional election as, "God's electing some solely on the basis of God's freedom and love and not on the basis of any merit or efforts on the part of humans." Unconditional election (or for the purpose of this thread just "election") is rooted in God's will of decree. By God's will of decree I mean the ways by which God enacts the divine plan of salvation in history. God's will of decree is not so much an actual decree made by God, as it is the mind of God in relation to the elect; their call and regeneration as it happens in time.

    Why do I state, "God's will of decree is not so much an actual decree made by God"? One does not need to hold to Reformed Theology to believe in God's omniscience. God knows all things. God does not acquire knowledge. All things come forth from God, not the converse. While this is true of all things, for the purpose of this discussion it is specifically true of the election of individuals to salvation. We speak of God's election of individuals to salvation as originating in God's will of decree. From eternity the sum total of the elect has always existed in the mind of God. This inherent divine knowledge began to be expressed, in time, after God's work of creation. It is first seen in Gen. 3:15 with the promise of the seed of the woman. It is revealed with continued frequency until, in the fullness of time, God sent forth His Son (Gal. 4:4). As the New Testament canon was completed the word of Christ and the Apostles revealed this "inherent divine knowledge" in decretive terms (c.f. Ephesians 1:4, 9, 11; Romans 8:30; 2 Timothy 1:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; Romans 9:13, 16; Ephesians 2:5, 12).

    God's will of decree is not based on any future act of man, such as belief (c.f Acts 15:18; Romans 9:11, 13, 16, 18). God did not look down the corridor of time and elected (chose) those who chose Him. To suggest otherwise is to force a condition upon divine knowledge. It creates a formal fallacy which will continually skew a proper understanding of the divine role in the calling and saving of individuals. Romans 9:11 places divine purpose ahead of human will. Paul writes, "so that God's purpose according to His choice would stand".

    God's will of decree also refutes the corporate election view. God is establishing His Church through the calling and saving of individuals, who have always existed in the eternal mind of God. God has not first called an empty set; a "if your build it they will come" entity (the Church) that is being filled by those who come to faith in Christ independent of election.

    Unconditional election then, is based on an understanding of God as all sufficient and all knowing. It does not begin with man or even end with man. It begins and ends with God. God is the subject and man is the object.
     
    #1 Herald, Sep 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2013
  2. Winman

    Winman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,768
    Likes Received:
    0
    I actually agree with this, but it is a strawman. This is not what non-Cals and Arminians believe.

    What God has decreed is that all who believe in Jesus will be saved. He does not decree who will believe.

    But... God in his foreknowledge knows exactly who will believe and who will not. That God knows a man will believe does not determine that man will believe. Nevertheless, God's foreknowledge is perfect, and those whom God knew would believe will believe in time without fail.

    This does not mean a man's fate is fixed. If that same man chooses not to believe in time, then God in his perfect foreknowledge always knew that man would not be a believer.

    This is not that difficult to understand. I cannot help but believe Calvinists purposely misrepresent what non-Cals and Arminians actually believe.

    The problem is that Calvinists cannot conceive that foreknowledge does not equal determinism.
     
    #2 Winman, Sep 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2013
  3. psalms109:31

    psalms109:31
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,600
    Likes Received:
    0
    It is a shame to look at unconditional election to come just as you are without taking the truth of these scripture, but of course it is easier to explain them away that is why many Calvinist that i don't agree with, but not Spurgeon minded Calvinist.

    "This breadth of heart was revealed on another occasion when in his prayer at a Thursday evening service he dared to go far beyond his creed, and in his passion for the souls of men cried, "Lord, hasten to bring in all Thine elect—and then elect some more."

    1 Timothy 2
    Instructions on Worship

    2 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time. 7 And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a true and faithful teacher of the Gentiles.

    Ezekiel 18:32
    For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

    I refuse to explain them away like many of my brothers have done. I do believe what Calvinist teach until God places life and death before man then i don't agree with Calvinist who will explain away the desire of God. That this is not universalism that i am teaching because if they don't turn to Jesus the knowledge of the truth unconditionally just the way they are dead in sin repent and live they will spend eternity without the one they rejected because it isn't God that has rejected them He wants them to repent and live and He has chosen us to be His messengers of this.

    Jeremiah 23:
    20 The anger of the Lord will not turn back
    until he fully accomplishes
    the purposes of his heart.
    In days to come
    you will understand it clearly.
    21 I did not send these prophets,
    yet they have run with their message;
    I did not speak to them,
    yet they have prophesied.
    22 But if they had stood in my council,
    they would have proclaimed my words to my people
    and would have turned them from their evil ways
    and from their evil deeds.


    1 Samuel 8:7
    And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king.
     
    #3 psalms109:31, Sep 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2013
  4. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    So, God's choice is free, but not free enough to base his choice on a condition outside himself?

    Electing is choosing. Describe how God makes a choice in your worldview. Doesn't God foreknow what he would choose prior to choosing? If so, how does he ever choose it? What about thoughts of God? If He knows a thought before thinking it, how does he ever originate a thought? Do you think creation, and you in particular, are eternally existent aspects of God's very nature that He had to necessarily create? And if God never 'acquires knowledge,' then how did he ever come to create for the act of creation had to be a new experience for God at some point, didn't it?

    Sin comes forth from God? Evil, molestation, rape, murder, hatred, malice, lust, envy, greed, pride...all come forth from our holy and sinless God?

    Please expound.
     
  5. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,129
    Likes Received:
    207
    What you are suggesting is oxymoronic! The essence of God's absolute freedom of will in Himself is that nothing outside Himself can place conditions upon him. If outside conditions can be placed upon Him then He does not have absolute freedom but is subject to things outside of himself.

    No! Because God's nature is not subject to time and thus not subject to chronological order. We may address his thoughts in regard to logical cause and effects or logical order but not chronological order. His thoughts are eternal and immutable. That is one aspect of many aspects about God that make him God and beyond the comprehensive level of finite people.

    You are confusing God's nature with objects of God's thoughts. Both are eternal but God transcends what he creates even though what he creates has NEVER been a new thought.


    You are confusing an ACT of God with the THOUGHTS of God. The ACTS of God are determined by the THOUGHTS of God in keeping with the determination by God when that act would be initiated. Time is a measurement and begins (Jn. 1:1-3) whenever God purposed to put thought into action. Action never limits His thoughts but only manifests them according to His purpose. Hence, God not only chose the persons in eternity but the active means for their salvation as well. Don't confuse the persons with the active means or confuse the purposes of God with the implementation of those purpose.


    Do you understand primary and secondary causes? God decreed to create free will in some creatures (man, angels) for ultimate good purpose and yet that GOOD purpose necessarily gave permission for the existence of contrary choice to God's revealed will (sin). God created both free will joined with responsible agents for the use of contrary choice. However, none of this caught God by surprise as He ordained to overrule permitted evil for ultimate good and for His glory (Psa. 76:10).
     
    #5 The Biblicist, Sep 22, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2013
  6. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,920
    Likes Received:
    95
    Thanks Biblicist.....I dont have the patience to go over well worn topics that have been discussed time & again, Ad nauseam.
     
  7. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    Moving, as any moderator should, this to the cal/arm debate forum. Comon' guys. Why on earth START a thread like this is the wrong place???????
     
  8. Herald

    Herald
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2011
    Messages:
    1,600
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was just following a moderators lead: http://www.baptistboard.com/showthread.php?t=88804

    That and I plumb forgot about the Calvinist/Arminian thread. I will remember that for the future.
     
  9. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,920
    Likes Received:
    95
    PLUM FORGOT!!!!????!!!! ..... Oh man..... next you will be saying Yall while eating grits. ;)
     
  10. Herald

    Herald
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2011
    Messages:
    1,600
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bob, also I think the fact that the Calvinist/Arminian forum is difficult to find causes these threads to wind up in other forums. Folks just forget.
     
  11. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2000
    Messages:
    9,631
    Likes Received:
    310
    Because this forum is relatively hidden from view.
     
  12. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's right. Bob, please stop moving the threads until this forum has a listing on the main page like the rest. There is really no reason to do this in my opinion.
     
    #12 Skandelon, Sep 22, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2013
  13. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    That statement is unsubstantiated.
    Unless He so chooses. If God chose to design a world where men have freedom...a world where he doesn't originate sin...a world where he justly holds men responsible because they actually have the ability to respond...then He might choose to allow himself to respond to conditions outside himself. To close off even the possibility of that design is shortsighted at best.

    Great answer. We actually agree on this point. I could point you to posts I wrote years ago that say almost the same thing, but I was addressing the question to Herald based on his conclusions for a reason...

    You are confusing my questions directed to Herald based on his statements, with my actual views on the matter, which you clearly don't know. The rest of your answer are part and parcel of the same, so I'll leave it at that...
     
  14. convicted1

    convicted1
    Expand Collapse
    Retired Staff

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Messages:
    9,011
    Likes Received:
    3
    I am this.....but I don't eat grits.... :laugh:
     
  15. convicted1

    convicted1
    Expand Collapse
    Retired Staff

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Messages:
    9,011
    Likes Received:
    3

    Don't you mean, "Folks just plumb forget"? :laugh:


    On a serious note, I am listening to a lined version of "When I Survey the Wonderous Cross", from Petercreek PBC, Mates Creek Association...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNjhmTzjlYE
     

Share This Page

Loading...