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Featured A Novel Soteriological Explanation in the Calvinism vs Arminianism Debate

Discussion in 'Calvinism & Arminianism Debate' started by Steven Yeadon, Oct 10, 2020.

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  1. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I assert with confidence that,

    1. God's omniscience allows Him to be the most free and most creative Being, omniscience in no way reduces His transcendence -- Does the LORD have freedom as the greatest creative Being? I ask because does God have to decide from eternity past all He wills to do in whatever future occurs? If God knows the future exhaustively, which would have to include His own future works, then He at one time might had more freedom and creativity than He does now. He must have, if He knows the future exhaustively. This is hard to square with an infinitely creative and free God. This is not theologically ok, because it puts God in a box He put Himself in, it's not biblical.

    2. The working of God's omniscience is not fully known by us - Our current understandings of omniscience fail on both sides of the Arminianism and Calvinism divide, because we often imagine God as less than free or less than creative. Our whole understanding of God's omniscience fails if we put God in a box and by doing so malign His transcendence. His ways and thoughts are far beyond ours as the heavens are to the earth. However, God has still revealed much about Himself, about His attributes, in His Word. We are to reflect on these things. Thus, God is still known to us as far as He has so far revealed Himself to us. That said, we anthropomophize God by claiming to know how His mind works in relation to His judgments about the future, because God has not revealed much on how He understands the future in the bible.

    3. God knows knows details about the future far in advance -- The mere scope of biblical prophecy reveals this. One cannot read Daniel 7-12, The Book of Revelation, or the Prophecies of the greater and lesser prophets in the Old Testament without realizing God knows the future in stunning detail. That said, again humility is called for here in refence to how God knows all this while respecting His creativity and freedom.

    I am very interested in talking about any biblical verses that can show that God can change His mind, come to regret an action after the fact, or anything similar. @Derf B You had much you had studied. I'm all ears.

    4. God wants all men saved -- These scriptures go to proving this statement in both the Old and New Testaments. There is no soul God does not want to come to repentance.

    Ezekiel 18:23 NASB
    Do I have any pleasure in the death of the wicked,” declares the Lord God, “[k]rather than that he should turn from his ways and live?

    Ezekiel 18:32 NASB
    "For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies," declares the Lord GOD. "Therefore, repent and live."

    Ezekiel 33:11 NASB
    "Say to them, 'As I live!' declares the Lord GOD, 'I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?'

    Lamentations 3:33 NASB
    For He does not afflict willingly
    Or grieve the sons of men.

    Matthew 23:37 NASB
    37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling.

    1 Timothy 2:3-4 NASB
    3 This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the [c]knowledge of the truth.

    2 Peter 3:9 NASB
    9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
     
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  2. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    5. God has elected some people to eternal life. However, not all those who will become a Believer were chosen from eternity. Here is scripture to show it,

    2 God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel? 3 “Lord, they have killed Your prophets, they have torn down Your altars, and I alone am left, and they are seeking my life.” 4 But what is the divine response to him? “I have kept for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” 5 In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.

    At the time Paul wrote this epistle, there was a chosen remnant of Israel reserved by God's gracious choice of them just like in the days of Elijah.

    6 But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

    There is to be no boasting among this remnant if God has chosen them in grace.

    7 What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened; 8 just as it is written,

    “God gave them a spirit of stupor,
    Eyes to see not and ears to hear not,
    Down to this very day.”

    9 And David says,

    “Let their table become a snare and a trap,
    And a stumbling block and a retribution to them.
    10 “Let their eyes be darkened to see not,
    And bend their backs forever.”


    Only the chosen remnant of Yahweh obtained salvation and the other Jews were hardened.

    11 I say then, they did not stumble so as to fall, did they? May it never be!

    Paul flat out says that the Jews were not hardened in order for them to fall.

    But by their transgression salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them jealous. 12 Now if their transgression is riches for the world and their failure is riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fulfillment be! 13 But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I magnify my ministry, 14 if somehow I might move to jealousy my fellow countrymen and save some of them. 15 For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?

    Salvation came to the Gentiles to make the Jews jealous. The transgression of the Jews led to riches for the world, because the Gentiles could now have the salvation of God. Paul extols his ministry to make jealous his fellow Jews so as to save some of them. For, if the rejection of the Jews led to riches for the world, then the acceptance of them by God is life from the dead.

    16 If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are too. 17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you.

    The root of the olive tree is Christ, the true vine. The branches of the olive tree broken off are the hardened Jews. The wild olive branches of the Gentiles have been grafted into Christ. The Gentiles are told not to be arrogant towards the hardened Jews.

    19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20 Quite right, they were broken off for their unbelief, but you stand by your faith. Do not be conceited, but fear; 21 for if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you, either.

    Paul tells his Gentile audience the hardened Jews were broken off due to unbelief, but the Gentile Christians stand by their faith. So fear God and do His will, lest they prove to be apostates.

    22 Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God’s kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off.

    Through all this God is showing His kindness and severity. Severity to the hardened Jews and kindness to the Gentiles.

    23 And they also, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. 24 For if you were cut off from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and were grafted contrary to nature into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these who are the natural branches be grafted into their own olive tree?

    Now that the hardened Jews are being called to salvation, and those that believe in Jesus Christ will be grafted back in again. In fact, those Jews that become Believers will be grafted in with ease compared to the Gentiles.

    6. Romans 9:17-24 are true and any theology must conform to what it teaches. God's wrath is a good thing. God displaying completely and favorably His wrath is a good thing. Revealing God's power by sending people to hell that are without the strength to stop it is a good thing. Being a mere mortal means we are disqualified from giving God advice on how to rule the universe (the same lesson of The Book of Job). It is good for God to harden some people to wrath and hell when their sin is ripened for it. It is good for God to harden Pharaoh to eternal damnation for a special purpose. In this case, to demonstrate God's power and make Him famous among the nations. It is good for God to endure with patience those wicked people He hardens to reveal the splendor of His glory to the saints.

    17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I raised you up, to demonstrate My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed throughout the whole earth.”

    This gives context, we are discussing God hardening Pharaoh.

    18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.19 You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?” 20 On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it? 21 Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use?

    As mere mortals, we do not have any standing to argue with God about how He rules.

    22 What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? 23 And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, 24 even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.

    I would like to note that according to the Mounce Interlinear, the word "prepared" in verse 22 is different from the phrase "prepared beforehand" in verse 23.

    The first word is katartizo, which means 'fit' or 'ripe' in this case. The word is in passive voice and ends with an -ed in English. So "is fitted" or " is ripened." Though I am new to Greek so my English may be a little off.
    καταρτίζω | billmounce.com

    The second word is proetoimazō, which means "to prepare beforehand," in this case. This lines up with my previous point on some being elect from before birth, including those chosen to be in the original church.
    προετοιμάζω | billmounce.com

    Lastly, I think many Arminians struggle with the Doctrine of Hell. We may feel like a child whose father is in the Special Forces and often goes to war. A man whose young son asks "Daddy, why do you have to kill so many people?" For we might be asking God as a spiritual child "Our Father in heaven, why do you send any people to hell?" This reveals that in my own case, the problem is with hell, because it seems cruel. However, I am a mere mortal and should not complain or argue with Yahweh.
     
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  3. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    The issues with Calvinism and Arminism is that they place a type of choosing by God in the sense of before we were born. The Bible however does not say that sinners were chosen in any sense to be saved . Elect = Jesus
    Elect = Jews
    Elect = purpose and service .
    Elect , is never before we existed.
    Predestination is After we believe
    Adoption is the future redemption of the body.
    Everything else is philosophy from Calvinism/ Arminsim.
     
  4. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    A valid set of questions, Steven.
    But I would caution you against asking about the Lord's freedom to do things, since He has revealed that He can do whatever He wants within the body of His word as He has made known to His children...
    The Scriptures.

    However, I also concede that you are free to ask whatever questions you like;
    It's a forum, and this is, after all, a venue for such things.;)

    As for the last underlined sentence above;

    I respectfully find myself disagreeing with you...
    To me, the Lord can and does "put Himself into a box" that He has defined, when He decided to reveal His word to the objects of His grace.
    All that is found in the Bible with regard to His treatment of any subject is what He wants us to know.

    That "box" was established by Him, and I think that we would do well not to go outside of it.
    Amen to the first highlighted quote.
    I also agree with the second.

    In the last highlighted section, I'm not sure why you arrive at this conclusion that there are some who think that we know how His mind works...
    I don't know of anyone, especially on the "Calvinist" side, that claims this.

    What I see them doing is pointing at the Scriptures and saying, "See? God did choose people to salvation, and did choose them in Christ before the foundation of the world and did send His Son to die for them and them alone!" They point at what God has had written down for our benefit ( Romans 15:4, 2 Timothy 3:15-16 ), believe it, and preach it.

    But then some of them have a problem with the other things that God has stated that seem contradictory, so they say to themselves, " That doesn't make sense to me in the light of all this over here, so I reject that!"...
    When they should be taking everything in stride.


    On the flip side, the staunch "Arminian" then comes along and says, " That doesn't make sense to me in the light of all this over here, so I reject that!" and instead says, " See? God does love the entire world of sinners, wants all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth, and sent His Son to die for all of us!"

    But to address the last sentence:

    God doesn't have to reveal anything to us ( but He does ), and His understanding is not for us to question...
    even though we are tempted to do so or to speculate on a great many things.;)

    I will say this:
    To me, He doesn't just understand the future, He rules it.
     
    #4 Dave G, Oct 10, 2020
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  5. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    I think that humility is called for whenever we as believers start to speculate on what God has on His mind.
    As I see it, God knows everything, is capable of far more than any of His creations, and I think that reading the book of Job all by itself should cause us all to fall on our faces in reverence to His awesome power, knowledge and creativity.

    As for the last sentence, I think that all of these "verses" ( snippets of things that the Lord has revealed in His word ) should be taken with equal authority to any that show His omnicience, His purposes from eternity, and His decisions to act apart from the will of His creation.
    Of course you know where I stand on this, and once again I find myself ( respectfully ) disagreeing with you;
    But I also confess that I once viewed this subject as you do, and I'd like to punctuate this by adding:

    If one sees 1 Timothy 2:4 and 2 Peter 3:9 ( by itself ) over-riding everything else with respect to this subject, then I would have to agree with you, Steven.
    I also would like for you to take a hard look at 2 Peter 3:9, plug it back into the text, and ask yourself who the "us-ward" are in the passage...all men, or the "beloved" from verse 8.:Sneaky

    But the more I've read His word over the decades, the more I've seen that even these statements have their context.
    To me, that context is with regard to Exodus 33:19, Romans 9:14-18 and many more passages that have to do with election, predestination, reprobation ( judicious blinding ), justification, the atonement ( what happened at the cross and for whom ) and so forth.

    From my own studies I've come to realize that the God of the Bible is far more complicated and wondrous than what I was initially led to believe when I was growing up in IFB churches, and that, just in the matter of salvation, what He has revealed in His word about it, goes far beyond "The Romans Road", John 3:16, 1 Timothy 2:3-6, 2 Peter 3:9 and a handful of other passages.

    I've come to realize that every word must be brought to bear on any subject, no matter how "insignificant" that it may seem to us.
    Once that is done, and very thoroughly, then I think it's safe for us as believers to then make a very careful and fully informed statement on a given subject from the Bible.
     
    #5 Dave G, Oct 10, 2020
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  6. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    I agree...sort of.

    I also see that you've left out the parables of the Sower and the Tares, but you may not have thought of those...
    Truly, everyone who "believes" does not end up in the kingdom of Heaven ( Matthew 7:21-23 ).

    I think that when you make the connection of who it is that does,
    It will cause you to sit back and grow very small before the Lord, my friend.;)
    Again I marvel at the progress that you have made in His word in the short time that you've been a believer, Steven.
    To me, it is clear testament to the grace that God has shown you through His Son, Jesus Christ.

    I cannot tell you how much I see you grasping the things above, while continuing to wrestle with others.

    From my perspective, your questions and comments not only show a genuine heart change towards God, but a genuine love of His word and the willingness to believe whatever it says...
    Even while He leads you into a deeper understanding of it all.
    When I read this statement I almost laughed ( when you called yourself an "Arminian" ), then I almost cried...
    and then I decided to reflect on it soberly and to tell you this:

    Someday I think that you'll figure this out for yourself...
    You're not an "Arminian" and I'm not a "Calvinist".

    From where I'm sitting, you're asking all the same questions that I've asked myself over the years.:)
     
    #6 Dave G, Oct 10, 2020
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  7. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    "Steven Yeadon,

    ,
    Proving what is asserted is not as easy as asserting

    No. His "freedom is constrained by His Perfect, Holy Omniscience". He cannot be free to act contrary to His Holy Character.
    He does not have to decide, as he knows;18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.


    There is no "if". Furthermore He does not at any time have more or less freedom, By very definition God being perfect , cannot increase and diminish in any of His attributes.



    .
    .
    This is not correct.


    You cannot have any scriptural support for these ideas, so they need to be abandoned.

    read here;
    https://chapellibrary.org:8443/pdf/books/aogo.pdf
     
    #7 Iconoclast, Oct 10, 2020
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  8. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    Sir, your points are not logically correct, given my arguments. You say He is bound by His omniscience. That feeds right into my argument. You say He knows all His works, but again you are arguing God's omniscience bounds Him. Your point about God's freedom not being diminished by any of this is not logical, it just does not follow. I am using logic for a change, as many on both sides use in this debate forum, that is all.
     
  9. Derf B

    Derf B Active Member

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    This is an insightful statement! It demands a third option.
    Regarding these examples, God has given us a possible solution in Isaiah.
    Isaiah 46:9-10 (KJV) 9 Remember the former things of old: for I [am] God, and [there is] none else; [I am] God, and [there is] none like me, 10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times [the things] that are not [yet] done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
    Most Calvinists I’ve talked to use this to say that God ordains all things from the beginning, that all things are “His pleasure”, but I don’t agree. The other way to read this, which is more specific to the text, which I believe makes it more accurate, is to say that God plans stuff out and then He accomplishes it, achieving the end He desired when He planned it out. And whatever end He desires, He most certainly can bring to pass, no matter what anyone, angels, devils, or men, might try to do to thwart it.

    In the case of Daniel’s prophecy, there are likely multiple purposes involved, but one of those purposes is likely to have been an Is 46 kind of thing—that God was setting up a situation that would show His power over the future, similar to when He said they would go into Egypt for 400 years. And you can see both how He accomplished the going into Egypt (Joseph’s story) and their extraction from Egypt (Moses’ story). God’s hand was working in both to a very great degree.
     
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  10. The Archangel

    The Archangel Well-Known Member

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    This question is flawed. God is not merely "the greatest creative being," He is the only creative being in any true sense. Mankind is creative, yes, but that creativity is derivative of God's creativity (being given as a communicable attribute as a matter of us bearing His likeness). What is more, any creativity mankind exhibits only re-arranges that which the Creator has already created. So, we're not working with our own stuff; we are working with His stuff.

    Secondly, as to the question of "Freedom"... This discussion always seems to forget that man is nothing more than a creature in the Creator's universe. As such, the creature is never truly "free" in a libertarian sense. The laws of physics, for example, put limits on our freedom. Humans do not fly, as we have no wings. However, human creativity and engineering allows mankind to fly using machines. We cannot grow wings, so we build them. But, that "freedom" to fly is only temporary--when the aircraft cannot generate lift, it will plummet to the ground--because mankind is not "free" to nullify anything (like gravity, in this instance) in the Creator's world.

    Secondly, as Creator, God is free to do anything He pleases. The universe is His universe and He is not bound by it (He is transcendent). We are told there are things that God cannot do, however, like lie. What God cannot do is bound by His character.

    So, in the final analysis both man and God have some type of limitation on their "freedom," but the difference between those limitations is huge: Man is constrained by God from outside of himself while God is constrained by that which is inside Himself.

    God, only being constrained by that which is inside of Himself, is free to do as He pleases with anything and anyone since He is the Creator and we are the creation.

    The Archangel
     
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  11. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    The world by wisdom did not know God so logic is not helpful.
    Special revelation is how we learn.
     
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  12. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I figured you might like this old research of mine.

    The bible says the following please God:

    Singing praise to God (Psalm 135:3 and 147:1)

    The words of our mouth and the meditation of our heart should be aimed to please Him (Psalm 19:14)

    Those that fear Him (Psalm 147:10-11)

    Those that hope in His steadfast love (Psalm 147:10-11)

    Burnt offering (Exodus 29:18)

    When God smelled the burnt offering Noah gave Him (Genesis 8:20-22)

    Making Israel God’s possession (1 Samuel 12:22)

    Israel when it is brought back from exile (Ezekiel 20:41)

    The young son of Jeroboam (1 Kings 14:12-14)

    God’s covenant with David that his kingdom be established forever (1 Chronicles 17:27)

    God had pleasure in David before making him king over Israel (1 Chronicles 28:4)

    Wisdom (Proverbs 3:17)

    Fearing God and steadfastly loving Him (Psalms 147:11)

    When people turn from sin to live Ezekiel 18:23 and Ezekiel 33:11. God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked or of anyone (Ezekiel 18:23, 32).

    To do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God is more pleasing than sacrifice and burnt offering (Micah 6:6-8)

    The temple of God (Haggai 1:8)

    Hosea 10:10 shows God executes justice when it pleases Him to.

    Hezekiah claims righteousness from his actions and is rewarded with longer life in Isaiah 38:1-8

    Isaiah 5:7 compares Israel to a pleasant plant planted by God

    Hosea 6 in context shows God desires mercy and the knowledge of God and He does not desire sacrifices or burnt offerings without such. This becomes more evident given Psalm 40:6. Psalm 50:7-15 shows God wants are vows to His commandments fulfilled and that we call upon Him in our day of trouble. Psalm 51:16-17 adds that God desires a contrite and broken spirit before sacrifice. Isaiah 1:10-20 exhorts us to do right, seek justice, correct the oppressor, defend the fatherless, plead the case of the widow before burnt offering and sacrifice. Giving God praise and thanksgiving is better than burnt offerings and sacrifices. Jeremiah 6:19-20 shows God takes no pleasure in sacrifice and burnt offering if there is rejection of His Law and no attention paid to His Words.

    Isaiah 56:4 shows God rewards those that please Him.

    Isaiah 42:21 shows God is pleased to have made His Law great and glorious.

    Proverbs 21:3 tells us to do the right thing and justice are more pleasing to God than sacrifice

    Psalm 69:30-31 shows that we can praise God with song and thank Him to please Him.

    1 Kings 3:10 shows us Solomon does something of his own volition that pleases God.

    Psalm 149:4 tells us God takes pleasure in His people Israel
     
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  13. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Lol.:Laugh
    You may already know how I personally feel about logic, Steven.

    I'm a scientist from wayyyy back, and I like to know how things "tick"...
    but when it comes to God's word, I confess to tossing my logic into the nearest garbage can.
    The Lord of all creation totally defies logic.

    That is what faith is all about, my friend, and that is why without faith it is impossible to please Him ( Hebrews 11:6 ).
    See Proverbs 3:5-7.;)
     
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  14. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    This goes to a very basic question: Is God still purposing things after the creation? I believe you have a wealth of verses on this Derf. Could you share them again?
     
  15. Derf B

    Derf B Active Member

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    I’d love to be able to have long conversations with you on this topic, but time doesn’t allow, unfortunately.

    I’ll give you some as I have time.

    Here’s the first:
    Genesis 2:19 (KJV) And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought [them] unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that [was] the name thereof.

    There’s lot to unpack here, but 2 things stand out. 1) That God created Adam with language he could use and understand. 2) That God wanted to see the result of something He had started.

    The first says that the second can be read as it seems, instead of trying to make it say something else (like to fit a different theological position than what the words seem to say outright).

    The second says God doesn’t know everything we will do. That means He created us creative, like He is, and our creativity is something of an unknown. Later, after the fall, our creativity become corrupted, but mainly in the uses of it, but not in its scope, as shown here:
    Genesis 11:6 (KJV) And the LORD said, Behold, the people [is] one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now *nothing* will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

    Added: And if God doesn’t know what we will do in even one instance, then He is likely to need to purpose something different in some instances. But that doesn’t have to change His overarching purpose(s).

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    #15 Derf B, Oct 10, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2020
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  16. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I actually agree that I should not make much of using logic. The first two points are more a conclusion to be further researched than solid points.

    That said, there are some points Iconoclast used that need themselves to be proven form the bible instead of given as logical presuppositions.

    Where in the bible does it say this?

    Where in the bible does it say this? How do you make sense of the many bible passages Derf B brings up to counter this notion?

    This is pure logic. Where in the bible does it say this?
     
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  17. tyndale1946

    tyndale1946 Well-Known Member
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    If you can call God sending his precious Son into the world to die for us and the three and one Godhead in counsel agreeing to the same in eternity before the foundations of universe were laid and the Son agreeing to come and carry out the will of the Father and give his life for sinful, ungodly men, which I and all of us are... To human logic, that is illogical as you can get... I have a son also but I wouldn't send him and he wouldn't come, besides the one that died for me died for him also... What did any of us do to deserve what we got, that we didn't deserve... NOTHING!... Anyone on here thinks they deserve Gods Sovereign Amazing Merciful Grace?... None of us do... That brethren is logical... The death that we received in Adam was also logical... The remedy for it Illogical but the only way to appease an offended God was death required and blood shed on behalf of the elect (which I believe is an unnumbered host of the race of mankind, not a pitiful few as some believe) on a cross... God is a God of logic... HIS!... I know this because this same God that his Son Jesus The Christ, paid for our sins on the cross of Calvary and died and was buried in a tomb, was resurrected on the third day... He now sits on his throne right next to the Father as our mediator and the Holy Spirit, is regenerating all those he died for daily... So who did Jesus die for?... ALL the Father gave him and none else... I don't question scripture, I believe it!... And as Dave says, The Lord of all creation totally defies logic... AMEN!... Brother Glen:)
     
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  18. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Furthermore He does not at any time have more or less freedom, By very definition God being perfect , cannot increase and diminish in any of His attributes.
    Got questions;
    Absolute perfection is a quality that belongs to God alone. Yet only in Matthew 5:48 does the Bible explicitly state that God is by nature perfect: “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” As God is the perfect being, all that He does is perfect: “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he” (Deuteronomy 32:4). His knowledge is perfect (Job 37:16). His way is perfect, and His Word is flawless: “As for God, his way is perfect: The LORD’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him” (Psalm 18:30). God’s laws are also perfect (Psalm 19:7; James 1:25). The apostle Paul describes God’s will as perfect: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2).

    Attributes of God,AW.Pink;
    Chapter 7 The Immutability of God God is distinguished from His creatures IMMUTABILITY IS ONE OF THE DIVINE PERFECTIONS WHICH is not sufficiently pondered. It is one of the excellencies of the Creator which distinguishes Him from all His creatures. God is perpetually the same: subject to no change in His being, attributes, or determinations.

    Therefore God is compared to a “Rock” (Deut 32:4, etc.) which remains immovable, when the entire ocean surrounding it is continually in a fluctuating state; even so, though all creatures are subject to change, God is immutable. Because God has no beginning and no ending, He can know no change. He is everlastingly “the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (James 1:17).

    Aspects of God’s immutability

    First, God is immutable in His essence. His nature and being are infinite, and so, subject to no mutations. There never was a time when He was not; there never will come a time when He shall cease to be. God has neither evolved, grown, nor improved. All that He is today, He has ever been, and ever will be. “I am the LORD, I change not” (Mal 3:6) is His own unqualified affirmation. He cannot change for the better, for He is already perfect; and being perfect, He cannot change for the worse.

    Altogether unaffected by anything outside Himself, improvement or deterioration is impossible. He is perpetually the same. He only can say, “I AM THAT I AM” (Exo 3:14). He is altogether uninfluenced by the flight of time. There is no wrinkle upon the brow of eternity. Therefore His power can never diminish nor His glory ever fade.
     
  19. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    pt2;
    Secondly, God is immutable in His attributes. Whatever the attributes of God were before the universe was called into existence, they are precisely the same now, and will remain so for ever. Necessarily so; for they are the very perfections, the essential qualities of His being.

    Semper idem (always the same) is written across every one of them. His power is unabated, His wisdom undiminished, His holiness unsullied. The attributes of God can no more change than Deity can cease to be. His veracity is immutable, for His Word is “for ever...settled in heaven” (Psa 119:89). His love is eternal: “I have loved thee with an everlasting love” (Jer 31:3) and “Having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end” (John 13:1). His mercy ceases not, for it is “everlasting” (Psa 100:5).



    Thirdly, God is immutable in His counsel. His will never varies. Perhaps some are ready to object that we ought to read the following: “And it repented the LORD that He had made man” (Gen 6:6). Our first reply is, Then do the Scriptures contradict themselves? No, that cannot be. Numbers 23:19 is plain enough: “God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent.” So also in I Samuel 15:29, “The Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for He is not a man, that He should repent.” The explanation is very simple. When speaking of Himself, God frequently accommodates His language to our limited capacities. He describes Himself as clothed with bodily members, as eyes, ears, hands, etc. He speaks of Himself as “waking” (Psa 78:65), as “rising up early” (Jer 7:13); yet He neither slumbers nor sleeps. When He institutes a change in His dealings with men, He describes His course of conduct as “repenting.” Yes, God is immutable in His counsel. “The gifts and calling of God are without repentance” (Rom 11:29). It must be so, for “He is in one mind, and who can turn from Him? and what His soul desireth, even that He doeth” (Job 23:13). Change and decay in all around we see, May He who changeth not abide with thee. God’s purpose never alters. One of two things causes a man to change his mind and reverse his plans: want of foresight to anticipate everything, or lack of power to execute them. But as God is both omniscient and omnipotent there is never any need for Him to revise His decrees. No, “The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of His heart to all generations” (Psa 33:11). Therefore do we read of “the immutability of His counsel” (Heb 6:17).
     
  20. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I must say that this definition of immutability fails to account for the fact God is three persona, one substance. Systematic theology teaches that God's substance is immutable, and as these scriptures indicate that is very true. However, does God have emotions? That is the classic way of pointing out the problem with such an understanding of God that the three persona of God (Father, God, and Holy Spirit) are absolutely unchanging. God is personal. His three persona have the capacity of change in so much as they have minds that feel and think. The emotionality of God is displayed all across the scriptures. This is an age old argument we now have. Systematic theology tells me that the author you quote went overboard on God's immutability by ignoring He is three persona at all. Are you saying the internal dialogue of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is unchangeable from eternity? I fear the author you quote has made God out to be FATED.
     
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