whosoever will

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by massdak, Sep 8, 2004.

  1. massdak

    massdak
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    this question is why do some believe while others do not?

    do some sins of unbelief disqulify a person from salvation more so then other sins?

    does God give mercy upon those who have an in born ability to be humble enough as to have the virtue to believe?

    any takers?
     
  2. npetreley

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    That's easy. The Bible tells you who the who is in whosoever will.

    John 6:37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me
     
  3. koreahog2005

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    Massdak, you asked the following:

    I’ll be glad to give my opinion. For those of us who believe in true free will (the ability to form a bias from equipoise), I think we have to say that we cannot humanly understand why some believe while others do not. We can only say that all decisions made with true free have always fit into God’s sovereign plan and were always foreknown by God. For example, Adam and Satan made their free will decisions to commit sin. We don’t know why they made those freewill decisions, but the decisions fit into God’s sovereign plan and were foreknown by God.

    It is true that only elect people believe. Non-elect people will not believe under any circumstances. Five-point Calvinists say people believe because they are elect. Arminians say people are elect because they believe. I don’t agree with either group. In opposition to the five-point Calvinists, I don’t believe that God’s foreknowledge of their faith is based on His election of them. In opposition to the Arminians, I don’t believe that their election is based on His foreknowledge. I believe that God’s foreknowledge and election are in accordance with one another. One does not precede the other. In 1 Peter 1:1-2 we see that we are chosen according to God’s foreknowledge. The phrase “according to” (the Greek preposition “kata”) in 1 Peter 1:2 can mean “in accordance with, corresponding to.” An example of this usage is 1 Peter 1:15: “But like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior.” The word “like” in verse 15 is the Greek word “kata.”

    You also asked the following:

    Yes, willful, intentional, defiant sins are unpardonable:

    “But the person who does anything defiantly, whether he is native or an alien, that one is blaspheming the LORD; and that person shall be cut off from among his people. Because he has despised the word of the LORD and has broken His commandment, that person shall be completely cut off; his guilt shall be on him.” (Numbers 15:30-31)

    “Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven men, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven.” (Matthew 12:31)

    “For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain terrifying expectation of judgment, and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?” (Hebrews 10:26-29)

    In contrast, the Bible makes it clear that sins of ignorance (unintentional sins) can be forgiven. Notice the following passages:

    “Now when these things have been thus prepared, the priests are continually entering the outer tabernacle, performing the divine worship, but into the second only the high priest enters, once a year, not without taking blood, which he offers for himself and for the sins of the people committed in ignorance.” (Hebrews 9:6-7)

    “And the priest shall make atonement before the LORD for the person who goes astray when he sins unintentionally, making atonement for him that he may be forgiven.” (Numbers 15:28)

    The apostle Paul said that even his blasphemy as a non-Christian could be forgiven because he “acted ignorantly in unbelief” (1 Timothy 1:13). He was not experiencing the special conviction of the Holy Spirit when he blasphemed. When Paul unintentionally sinned after he became a Christian, he said that he was not doing “what I would like to do” (Romans 7:15); rather, “sin which dwells in me” was responsible for his actions (Romans 7:17). Thus, both Christians and non-Christians can commit unintentional sins.

    When Peter addressed the Jews in Jerusalem after the crucifixion of Jesus, he said that they “acted in ignorance” (Acts 3:17) when they put Him to death. Jesus said from the cross, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).

    Finally, you asked the following:

    I don’t think any human alive today has an inborn ability to be humble, and I don’t think any human alive today has an inborn ability to believe. I don’t call the ability to believe a virtue. Receiving a gift from God and surrendering to God are not meritorious activities. No one ever got a medal for receiving a gift or surrendering to someone else. We are born totally depraved, and thus God must give elect persons the ability to believe and repent at some point after they are past the age of accountability.
     
  4. APuritanMindset

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    I agreed with MOST of what you said up to this point. And I thought this last statement was good until the last sentence where you mentioned the age of accountability. I am not changing the subject, but just making an observation.

    IF we are born depraved as you have said, than how do we get to heaven before we reach a certain age? God is holy and wants nothing to do with sin.

    If we are truly born sinful (which the Bible clearly teaches), then all we have to look forward to is damnation, correct? That being the case, and us being BORN sinful, we are already sinful, and already deserve damnation. I don't see a delay in the sinfulness of man. We're sinful from conception. So, any infant who goes to heaven is by the grace of God, and not because they were born sinful but completely innocent until a certain age when they were made sinful again.

    To get back on topic, npetreley made a good response to the definition of the whosoever will of the Bible. And I just wanna add some thoughts of my own.

    We don't do anything that in some way we didn't choose to do. Yes, Christians can sin in ignorance, but a Christian also sins willfully. Here is a thought from St. Augustine:

    Whosoever will means whosoever will. Whoever wants to go to Jesus to be saved can go to Jesus to be saved because, I believe, that anyone wanting to go to Jesus to be saved and they are truly converted is one of the elect. Someone who is not of the elect won't want to go to Jesus.
     
  5. Ray Berrian

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    Isaiah 65:12 in a brief few words, knocks out the idea of "Irresistible Grace" and "Unconditional Elect," will affirming the intention of the sinner as being real.

    God calls the Israelites and they do not answer; He speaks but they do not want to hear. This is Arminians view of "Resistible Grace" rather than the above Calvinistic concept. Study also 65:2.

    The Israelite 'choose' meaning there is a free will; and the Lord is not delighted in their choices. Yes, He wishes all human to be eternally saved {I Timothy 2:4}but if they reject His opened arms, and His call then they are walking toward Hell and will find themselves further away from the Lord.

    As God closes the final book of His canonical truth He says, 'Whosoever wills, let him take of the water of life freely.'
     
  6. APuritanMindset

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    The Israelites were already God's chosen people. Just as Christians are God's chosen people. Israel never chose to be God's chosen people. But you're obviously Arminian, so I ask you this, using your same verse:

    I will destine you for the sword,
    and all of you will kneel down to be slaughtered,
    because I called you and you did not answer,
    I spoke and you did not hear;
    you did what was evil in My sight
    and chose what I did not delight in. Isaiah 65:12 (HCSB)

    How do you get past that God says that they are "destined" for the sword and that they WILL kneel down and be slaughtered? It doesn't seem they have a choice in that.

    God is still sovereign and sovereignly chose Israel. You can not get around election.
     
  7. Ray Berrian

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    APuritanMindset,

    'I agree with your above statements.

    'There is no reason to 'get past that God says that they are destined for the sword.' Although they were God's chosen people they were called to faithfulness. They disobeyed the Lord and rejected His call to obedience and true faith. The Lord God had every right to discipline them for their waywardness. He drew His sword and judgment fell on them. Notice in 13-14 that nothing satisfied the Lord's people because of their rebellion. The only thing that makes His people happy/content is to follow Him living a life of holiness before the Lord.

    You are correct that God is sovereign in what He did to His covenant people, just as a father deals with His disobedient children. Yes, the Lord did choose Israel. Biblical theologians never deny election, but at times disagree with how it takes place.

    All of Scripture points to 'foreknowledge' when you look up this truth in Strong's Concordance. The Lord has always known who will be elect and who will remain in their sins forever while on the earth and in Hell. Neither a Calvinist or an Arminian would deny the Omniscience of the Godhead. The Greek word is our word for 'prognosis.' (prognosin-I Peter 1:2) The Lord is the sovereign Prognosticator. He knows everything; He knows everyone who will receive Christ. (John 1:12 & 3:16)

    Within His sovereignty He has determined that the Gospel must be heard and that a human determination must be made as to His plan of salvation. {Revelation 22:17} While He can and does make a prognosis as to who will be saved and lost, He does not inflict eternal torment on any sinner unless they repel His call to grace and everlasting life.

    Some Christians apparently believe that God can pick and choose men for Heaven and Hell. This totally strips away the Jusice, Love and Mercy of the eternal Godhead. Some things God cannot do. He cannot sin and He cannot go back on His promises and covenant with the people of God like you and me.

    Best regards,
    Berrian, Th.D.
    :cool:
     
  8. APuritanMindset

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    To help me understand where you are coming from, and to help me respond better so I don't make you say something you're not, do you see a difference in the call that the prophet (or preacher) makes in the name of God and the call that the Holy Spirit makes to an individual?
     
  9. Ray Berrian

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    APuritanMindset,

    'Since the Holy Spirit calls the man of God to ministry I believe that the Spirit of God is even more interested in calling sinners to Himself.

    If you believe in a general call of the Spirit to all sinners and the effecutal call to only the elect then this is something that I do not accept. A call of the Spirit to some sinners would make the Lord God a respecter of persons. There is such a teaching as the Justice of God.' {Acts 17:30} How could God tell us to 'love our enemies' but He only loves some sinners? See the problem?
     
  10. APuritanMindset

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    Even if I didn't believe in election, I still see a seperation of the Holy Spirit's call and the preacher's call. How else do you explain how a preacher can preach to a crowd and no one respond and the next time, he preach to the same crowd and hundreds respond?
     
  11. Ray Berrian

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    APuritanMindset,

    One of the Attributes of God is that of His Divine Justice. Unconditional Election is incompatible with the justice/fairness of the Lord our God. Also, God's love is limitless toward all the sons and daughters of Adam, meaning even us. So when people say that God picks certain lost people, it is incongruous with His unrestricted love for His lost creatures. {I Timothy 2:6; II Peter 3:9 & I John 2:2}
     
  12. Monergist

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    Where is that found in scripture?

    Like I've pointed out before, these terms (justice, fairness, love, etc.) do not define God; God defines the terms. When you, Ray, take YOUR definition of justice, fairness (and btw, where in scripture does it say that God must be 'fair'?)...When you take YOUR definition of these attributes--ex.,'justice' according to Ray-- and then you mold God to fit YOUR definition, which is what you are doing, then you create an idol.
     
  13. APuritanMindset

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    But I am talking predestination aside. I would think there is a difference in the outward call of the preacher and the effectual call of the Holy Spirit. This is obvious from Scripture as well. For example, Take the book of Acts and the story of Lydia:

    Then, setting sail to Troas, we ran a straight course to Samothrace, the next day to Neapolis, and from there to Philipi, a Roman colony, which is a leading city of that district of Macedonia. We stayed in that city for a number of days. On the Sabbath day we went outside the city gate by the river, where we thought there was a place of prayer. We sat down and spoke to the women gathered there. A woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who worshipped God, was listening. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was spoken by Paul. After she and her househol were baptized, she urged us, "If you consider me a believer in the Lord, come and stay at my house." And she persuaded us. (Acts 16:11-15 HCSB Emphasis mine )

    You see, they spoke to all these women, but only Lydia's heart was opened to "pay attention to what was spoken by Paul". They were giving an outward call to all the women, but only Lydia responded, and she responded because God made her able to listen and respond.

    I see both kinds of calling being represented here. How would you explain this?
     
  14. Sularis

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    Actually I disagree Puritan there is only one call mentioned

    notice Paul was preaching before the Lord opened her heart, to listen

    The general call through the Word of God affected a state of ability to which she then responded

    How can the believe if they do not hear - how can they hear if no one preaches? (rough paraphrase)
     
  15. Ray Berrian

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    Before Paul and Silas entered the city of Thyatira, the home of Lydia, she already 'worshipped God.' She had accepted 'the highest elements in Judiasm', says, Dr. George E. Ladd, B.D., Ph.D. professor of Biblical Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary. (The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, p. 1154.

    From what I have read Jews never denied the Lord in the O.T. and she probably already believed in our Lord. The Bible does not say that she was saved and baptized. It does say, however, that Lydia was open to all 'the things which the Apostle Paul taught her.

    The term, 'the Lord opened' suggests that the Spirit of God was there to instruct and she was willing to follow in Jesus steps by way of teaching. The Greek word, 'opened' is {dianoigo} suggesting to open thoroughly or to unenclose. There is no doubt that she followed the Lord in water baptism along with servants and other family members and some think possibly even children and babies. They call it household baptism; but that's another subject.

    I am sure that Jesus speaks for the Father and the Spirit where He says that 'He has come to reprove the world of sin, of righteousness and of (coming) judgment.' {John 16:8}

    What we do reject is that the Lord hand picks His elect, which is in contradistinction to that of His Attribute of Justice. The Christian God could not damn the majority autocratically and save only His elect. Does anyone find justice in portraying Jesus in this way? The Apostle Peter speaks to this fact of the Attribute of the Justice of God, in Acts 10:34-35. 'Then Peter opened his mouth and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons; but in every nation he who fears Him and worketh righteousness, is accepted of Him.' His love knows no bounds toward His lost creation. {I Timothy 2:6 & I John 2:2} Those who believe in the Son are eternally saved. {I John 5:12} Sinners become elect in the Son when they believe in the Lord God with a true heart.

    Berrian, Th.D.
     
  16. billwald

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    A belief is a conclusion based upon one's history and experience. One does not choose what one believes.
     
  17. BobRyan

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    The salvation of saints pre-cross is documented in Hebrews 11 and seen in MAtt 17 in the transfiguration and Moses and Elijah. Christ stated pre-cross "your sins ARE forgiven go and sin no more" and "He was correct". These people did not believe in the Trinity nor did they have a good understanding of the substitutionary death of the Messiah - yet they were forgiven.

    From Adam to the last human on earth in Revelation - ONLY ONE Gospel, only one mechanism. No change in all of that time.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  18. Ray Berrian

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    Bob Ryan,

    In your view did Jesus die for the sins of the whole world, meaning every sinner born of Adam and Eve?
     
  19. BobRyan

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    Yes. The sufferings of Christ were "in the amount" that the Law of God demands for ALL the sins of all humans in all of time.

    Although forgiveness was "real" pre-cross when Christ pronounced it saying "go your way your sins ARE forgiven", and Enoch and Elijah went to "real" heaven pre-cross, yet all this was done under the Romans 4 principle where God is said to call Abraham the father of many nations while as yet he had none. As Paul sais "God calls those things that are not - as though they are". He transcends linear time.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  20. rc

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    God does not have a justice like ours. The popular postmodernist view of justice is "fairness". This is not the biblical view of God's justice. He did not treat Jacob and Esau "fairly" or Judas and Peter or Moses and Pharoah. God is soveriegn. He would be just to condemn us all to hell. We all DESERVE that. If he chooses to save some or none He would be just in doing so. He does not "owe" any of us mercy. Who is the clay to say to the potter "Why have you made me thus?" Also choice has nothing to do with the arguement, it is the heart that is the problem. NOONE will choose God because our desires are always inclined to evil and we hate the light.

    The greek for "opened" in Acts is actually "to open ones understanding". Without the HS doing this she would not be able to do so and would not have accepted the teaching.
     

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