What makes the difference?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Dale-c, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. Dale-c

    Dale-c
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    This question has been asked by me and others dozens of time, not once has there been an answer that I know of.
    I think once there was an "I don't know" at least that was an attempt.
    Anyway, please answer this:

    If You believe man has a freewill to choose God, why do some choose God and others refuse him?
    What makes the difference?

    Simple question! ;-)
     
  2. JustChristian

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    The real question is "Why not?"
     
  3. menageriekeeper

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    Honestly Dale, I think the answer is as individual as why we who are saved chose Christ. I don't believe there is any magic bullet for either responding or not responding.

    Personally, I believe deception and selfishness are at the root of the decision of one who refuses Christ. How was it in the garden where there was only one rule? Satan made the fruit look desirable (deception) and Eve wanted the knowledge/power that would come if she took a bite(selfishness). Those same two cards are played over and over again by Satan. That is why he is called the prince of this world.
     
  4. npetreley

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    I've said this before (many times). Isn't it amazing how easy it is for almost everyone to identify the reasons why people reject Christ -- yet nobody ever steps up to the plate to offer reasons why someone accepts Him?

    I wonder why that is? (not really)
     
  5. webdog

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    Faith is the answer. You can choose to have faith in yourself, or God. One leads to eternal life, one doesn't.
     
  6. npetreley

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    No, it's not the answer. If you choose to have faith in the wrong person or thing, the reason is (everyone finds it easy to fill in this blank -- pride, deception, etc.)

    Now fill in the blank for the reason someone chooses to have faith in the RIGHT person, Jesus. You won't, I'm sure. Nobody ever does.
     
  7. Dale-c

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    I am not sure what is going on here but weren't there like 7 pages to this thread earlier today?
    What happened?
     
  8. Rippon

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    How did you generate faith in God WD ?!
     
  9. Dale-c

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    Wait, the other thread is still up but I did NOT post this second one.
    ???
    Oh, well. Carry on! :)
     
  10. webdog

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    "Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God"
     
  11. menageriekeeper

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    Ha! You know what? This is a double post. I noticed it yesterday but paid no attention to it when this one came to the top.

    Well you asked why someone doesn't chose Christ and now you want to know why someone else does.

    Well let's go back to the garden. How long did it take for Adam and Eve to realize that all was not as it seemed? Has man lost his ability to realize that selfishness only leads to turmoil? Of course not. Just because there are some who will persist in their deception and selfishness doesn't preclude others from seeing past it.
     
  12. Dale-c

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    We are not the same as Adam was though. He was not created with sin, just with the ability. BUt as in Adam, all have sinned. INterestingly, I was just going over that in the catechism question on my radio program for this week.

    Mk, please answer me this just so I know what you believe:
    Do you believe all would reject God without His interjection?
    Many believe that is the case, though God gives them light at some point in their life at which they then choose to believe or reject.
    I don't agree with that position but was curious if you at least believed that much, or can man be saved without any specific intervention or conviction at al?
     
  13. Dale-c

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    In a sense I totally agree with this statment.
    God does use means to all of His ends.
    He uses wide and varied methods of changing hearts.
    But here is where you need to see something:
    If you ask why did one reject and the other believe you you will come up that person a did this...because of that because of this and that etc.
    It would appear that you could trace the reasons, the cause and effect infinitely.
    WHile it WOULD seem infinite, it would really NOT be.
    It all must trace back to God.
    God is the creator.
    God chose to allow you to be put in places where you would hear the gospel, that is more than some people in the world get.
    But more than that he softened you heart to the gospel.
    If he had not softened your heart (and mine) to the gospel, neither of us would have believed.
    It is a blow to the ego, I know.
    It took me a few weeks to realize that calvinistic doctrine really was Biblical.
    It took me four years to totally admit it.

    We are saved by God's grace alone. Not be any decision that we have made.
    Any decisions that we make are because of the grace God has given to us and not to others.

    There is no room left for boasting on our part.
    No room for any pride.
    Read Romans 8 and 9. It is interesting that they actually become quite comforting as you read them and learn to simply trust the all wise grace of our God.
     
  14. menageriekeeper

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    I'm not sure why you bring this up. Are you saying that because Adam was created without a sin nature that he somehow was in a better position to see past the deception and look to God for a solution? Hopefully not, cause it was God that came looking for Adam. Adam then had the same choice that we have: to come out of hiding and let God fix thngs or stay in the bushes.

    Actually yes, otherwise Adam or Eve one would have been standing out in the middle of the garden saying "look, I broke myself. Can you fix me?"

    I believe there is sufficient drawing of the Holy Spirit on each and every life for that one to decide to continue on in darkness or to cross into the light of Christ.(Jn 12:32) I believe this drawing begins at the moment each life is mature enough to recoginize there is right and wrong. I believe drawing continues continues until the individual either accepts Christ (thus creating an unbreakable bond between the two) or refuses Christ to the point that God declares him reprobate (Ro. 1:28, 2 Tim 3:8) or they die.

    I would seem to agree with you right up to the lines I've highlighted and there we diverge. While it may be true that I had more reinforcement of the drawing of the Father, the Bible says that no one is without excuse. You know, I'm going to quote that passage and highlight the portion I'm referring to.

    What did God show and to who(m) did He show it? He showed that which may be known about Himself "clearly" to the "things that are made". Who was made? All mankind.

    Now I understand that some may think that this is referring to the Jewish heirarchy, but at the beginning of the passage both the Greek and the Jew are referred to as is an interesting bit about the things of God being passed from "faith to faith" (v 17).

    Of course there is no room for pride. Repentance is not a "work". I'm not sure how folk get that idea. Can an attitude be work?

    Instead what we should feel (instead of pride) is a constant amazement that God provided such a simple path to follow and a constant sorrow that more people refuse to follow.

    I simply cannot get past the definition of all. The Lord is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
     
  15. npetreley

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    Here's an easy way to get past it. Ask yourself, "All of whom? Any of whom?" Then check the context. Very easy.
     
  16. menageriekeeper

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    Okay, checking the context (agian). Hmmm seems Peter is explaining why Christ hasn't returned:

    2pe 3:4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.

    Goes on to explain how things happened at the time of the flood:

    2pe 3:5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:
    2pe 3:6Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:
    2pe 3:7But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.

    And applies it to the here and now:

    2pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    2pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

    The Lord is longsuffering and willing to hold off the destruction of the earth until such a point that it is clear that holding off will bring in no more. How long was it Noah worked on the ark? 120 years and there was no man but Noah and his family who believed. How much longer do you think God will wait for thousands of Christians to witness to thousands more. (sorry off subject and the rest of the passage goes further off)

    So back on topic. If this scripture isn't good enough how about:

    Jn 3:16 What does whosoever mean?

    Matt 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.


    Joh 1:7The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

    Joh 3:35The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.
    Joh 3:36He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

    Joh 17:1These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
    Joh 17:2As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.

    I could go on and on, but I'm ending with the above. What was it that God gave to the Son? All flesh. What else? As many as thou hast given him. Now wait, God already gave Christ power over all flesh, so who are these that are now being given? Well the verses from Jn 3 explains it quite well: He that believeth on the Son shall have everlasting life.

    So we are back to I can't get past the usage of the word all.
     
  17. npetreley

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    Here, I'll bold the important parts for you.

     
  18. menageriekeeper

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    I get what you are saying Npet. And I know that Peter is speaking to Christians, but he is not speaking about Christians.

    What he is saying is that the Lord is longsuffering and unwilling that any should perish. Any is not qualified as any of you all, not specific to just the members of the church. Peter wouldn't have included all the statements about the flood if he hadn't wanted us to see the parallel between God waiting now and God giving the people of Noah's day 120 years to repent.
     
  19. npetreley

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    Well, you can interpret it your way. I think it's clear from the context.

    2pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    2pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any [of us] should perish, but that all [of us] should come to repentance.

    Why is God longsuffering to the beloved (us-ward) only, but is not willing that anyone else should perish?

    You can have the last word. I think the text speaks for itself.
     
  20. Dale-c

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    I agree with Npet on this but actually some Calvinists actually agree with you, MK on this passage.
    BUt the point is, which will?
    It is the will that GOd decrees?
    THe will that includes whatever comes to pass?
    Because even sin is a part of that, though GOd doesn't actually create sin, He just removes His restraint and we sin on out own.
    If it is God's decree, this it is clear that ALL of us, who are the elect WILL be saved and Christ will not return until every last one of the elect are saved.

    If it is talking about God's preceptive will, His commands so to speak, then yes, it would be all men because all men are required to come to the savior, but none will without Christ.
     

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