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Featured Can you prove by Scripture

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by agedman, Oct 3, 2021.

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  1. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    Can you prove by Scripture that there is true freedom of the will?

    Does not the Scripture state, “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”

    Does not the Scripture state, “But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.”

    My own view is that God is the creator of parameters and establishes boundaries.

    The unbeliever may know and give according to the boundaries established by God. One of those is that the heart (will) of the unbeliever is “desperately wicked. And in such a state of wickedness is slavery, not freedom.
     
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  2. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    It cannot be done, but I am sure that many have tried.

    The fact that we as fallen men do have a will, and that God does indeed appeal to that will, is not the problem or the issue at hand:
    It is the fact that man's will is against the Lord, and in love with sin ( Romans 1:18-32, Romans 3:10-18 ).
    It is estranged from Him, even from the womb ( Psalms 58:3 ).

    The Lord Jesus identified this in the religious Pharisees, which is why they would not come to Him that they might have life ( John 5:40 ).
    He identified this in men and condemns us for it, by pronouncing light ( Himself, the Light of Truth ) is come into the world, that we as men love darkness rather than light...and the evidence of this is that our deeds are evil ( John 3:19-20 ).
    He also told Paul, in Romans 1:18-32, just what happened in the past to mankind when we knew God...
    We became darkened in our minds and in our hearts ( Ephesians 4:17-19 ), and He gave us over to that which we came to love.

    In fact, our wills are in such a state, that the Lord made this observation of even His chosen nation of Israel,
    most of whom abandoned Him and His holy covenant of Law:

    " Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." ( Jeremiah 13:23 ).

    This, my friend, is why we need a Saviour.
    To save us not only from ourselves and our love of sin, but our hatred of Him for commanding us to repent.
    This is what makes being born again the most important aspect of having a genuine relationship with our Creator...

    For, "Can two walk together, except they be agreed?" ( Amos 3:3 ).
    No.
    Man and God cannot walk together unless our hearts turn to Him in repentance.

    He is holy, and we are not.
    He will not and cannot sin, and we cannot stop sinning apart from Him and His power.
     
    #2 Dave G, Oct 3, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2021
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  3. canadyjd

    canadyjd Well-Known Member

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    You have to define “freedom of the will”. If you simply mean making choices that seem good to you, then of course people make choices all he time.

    If you mean the “will” to chose to follow God without any external or internal influences on that decision, then no.

    peace to you
     
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  4. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Martin Luther had great book on this, Bondage of the Will!
     
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  5. AustinC

    AustinC Well-Known Member

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    Jonathan Edwards "Freedom of the Will" is also a worthy read.
     
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  6. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Knowing edwards, should be munch harder to follow though!
     
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  7. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    One thing I'd like to add:

    According to what I see in the Scriptures, not only can we not stop sinning apart from Him and His power,
    our will is in such a state ( before His work in us as believers ), that we will not even desire to stop sinning and to obey Him.
     
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  8. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    Can you prove there isn't?
    2Co_8:12 for if the willing mind is present, according to that which any one may have it is well-accepted, not according to that which he hath not;
    2Co_8:19 and not only so, but who was also appointed by vote by the assemblies, our fellow-traveller, with this favour that is ministered by us, unto the glory of the same Lord, and your willing mind;
    MB
     
  9. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Jesus stated that before saved by Him, in bondage and slavery to our sin natures, was he wrong?
     
  10. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    Show scripture.Are you claiming Paul lied?
    MB
     
  11. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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    18 For I know that in me, that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me, but to do that which is good is not. Ro 7
     
  12. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Same Paul who admitted was in bondage to his flesh after saved in Romans 7, but found victory in the Holy Spirit chapter 8?
     
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  13. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    To me, Paul is describing his desires post-conversion...i.e. after the Lord had changed him on the road to Damascus and he had believed on Christ.
    Similar to Galatians 5:17, he is confessing that he still could not obey the Lord because of his wicked flesh even though to will to do so was present in him.

    Which brings us to Romans 8 and mortifying the deeds of the body through the Spirit, and not by our own efforts through the flesh.:)
     
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  14. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    Both of these Scriptures is addressed to believers, not unbelievers.

    Do slaves have true freedom of the will?

    Did I not post scriptures that show the former estate of the believers was that of slavery to the world?

    The only folks with true freedom of the will are believers.

    Ephesians 3:
    14For this reason I bend my knees before the Father, 15from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, 16that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner self,17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the widthand length and height and depth, 19and to know the love of Christ which surpassesknowledge, that you may be filled to all the fullness of God.
    Colossians 3:
    15And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. 16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
     
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  15. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    IMO, one of the greatest and most thorough works on freedom of the will was done by Jonathan Edwards, titled “Freedom of the Will.

    is is NOT for casual reading and I have even had graduate students who give up on reading it, for Edwards takes the time to approach the subject bit by bit and dismantling all arguments.

    However, as difficult to read as it is, I have found nothing better in the treatment of the subject.

    If you desire here is the PDF version: http://www.ntslibrary.com/PDF Books/Jonathan Edwards Freedom of the Will.pdf

    Here is an audiobook version. I have never done audiobooks, so I have no idea how this works, but if those of you who do will let me know your evaluation of the reading, I would appreciate the effort.
    http://www.ntslibrary.com/PDF Books/Jonathan Edwards Freedom of the Will.pdf
     
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  16. Silverhair

    Silverhair Active Member

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    I must admit I have never found such a depressing lot as many of the people on here are. You would rather have yourselves be robots than have a free will. Do you consider yourselves so incapable of making a rational choice that you need God to make it for you?
    Do you really think that God could not give man the ability to make a choice about their own salvation when the choice is given to them? Try reading all of scripture not just what you think supports your view.
    God gave man a brain and He expects us to use them. But all that I see coming from here is people saying well I am just to dumb to make a choice so I will just have to hope that I am one of the lucky ones that got chosen. But I really won't know until I stand at judgment. Stop trying to find that one verse that you think helps you prove your point. Look at all of scripture.
    I came on this board expecting to deal with people that trusted scripture but what I have found is people that just post the same old canards. I do not care if you want to be a Calvinist or and Arminian as long as you are truthful in how you deal with scripture. Problem is that I have found more twisting of scripture here than I did when I did outreach with street kids.
    I fully expect this to cause a flame war but be that as it may. This had to be said.
     
  17. RipponRedeaux

    RipponRedeaux Active Member

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    Robots huh? I have never heard that lobbed across the pages of the BB before! Ha, Ha, Ha!
     
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  18. SovereignGrace

    SovereignGrace Well-Known Member
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    If we are such a sad bunch of ppl, why doesn't he just leave? No one is making him visit here, youse nose?
     
  19. AustinC

    AustinC Well-Known Member

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    How does 2 Corinthians 8:1-24 teach true free will (a will that can function with no check on what it chooses to do, including no check by the human conscience)?

    We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us. Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace. But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace also. I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. And in this matter I give my judgment: this benefits you, who a year ago started not only to do this work but also to desire to do it. So now finish doing it as well, so that your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it out of what you have. For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have. For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened, but that as a matter of fairness your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need, that there may be fairness. As it is written, “Whoever gathered much had nothing left over, and whoever gathered little had no lack.” But thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same earnest care I have for you. For he not only accepted our appeal, but being himself very earnest he is going to you of his own accord. With him we are sending the brother who is famous among all the churches for his preaching of the gospel. And not only that, but he has been appointed by the churches to travel with us as we carry out this act of grace that is being ministered by us, for the glory of the Lord himself and to show our good will. We take this course so that no one should blame us about this generous gift that is being administered by us, for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man. And with them we are sending our brother whom we have often tested and found earnest in many matters, but who is now more earnest than ever because of his great confidence in you. As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker for your benefit. And as for our brothers, they are messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ. So give proof before the churches of your love and of our boasting about you to these men.

    I am wondering where the doctrine of free will is taught in this passage. Please show this doctrine being taught. What I see is Paul encouraging the Corinthians to actually provide the money they said they would give.
     
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  20. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    silverhair is frustrated in that he cannot grasp the biblical discussions,so he blames everyone else.
    it is easier to suggest everyone else is at fault rather tham admit to defective theological concepts.
    the free will idol is placed front and center once again....it blinds many.
    notice he suggests we say men do not make choices,when in fact everyone of us affirms that men make choices.
    this is disingenuous.
     
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