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Featured Does God Control Sin?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by SavedByGrace, Feb 8, 2024.

  1. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Does God Control Sin?

    Firstly, we have to establish what is meant by the word “control”

    As defined by the Oxford English dictionary;

    When used as a noun

    “the power to influence or direct people's behaviour or the course of events”

    And as a verb

    “determine the behaviour or supervise the running of”

    There is no doubt that God is indeed Absolutely Sovereign, which means that He can do anything without any restraints or restrictions. This is very clear in the entire Bible.

    Secondly, because God “can do” whatever He pleases, to whoever He pleases, it does not mean that He “does do”.

    God can and does direct our behaviour to a certain degree, but, it is clear that He does not always “choose” to.

    God also does “influence” what people do, or what takes places in His world, but again, He does not always do so.

    Thirdly, to say that God “controls” the sins in people lives, is to make God the Author of our sinful actions. Does God “direct” the sins that we commit? Or, does He “determine” that we sin against Him? In either case, He would be the Author of Sin, which is anathema and an impossibility.

    Fourthly, God has Created all humans with a “free will”, which is the “ability to choose”, between options, and make decisions that could be right or wrong. This does not in any way take away form the fact that God is Absolutely Sovereign, because He has determined this for all humans.

    Fifthly, when any person sins, it is their personal responsibility, and not because God somehow “influenced” them to do so, or even “directed” their sinning against Him. This is 100% against the very Nature and Character of the Holy God of the Bible, and blasphemy to teach.

    This grave error of God’s “control” of our personal sins, has been taught by some, like the Reformed theologian, Wayne Grudem:

    "In Spite of All of the Foregoing Statements, We Have to Come to the Point Where We Confess That We Do Not Understand How It Is That God Can Ordain That We Carry Out Evil Deeds and Yet Hold Us Accountable for Them and Not be Blamed Himself: We can affirm that all of these things are true, because Scripture teaches them. But Scripture does not tell us exactly how God brings this situation about or how it can be that God holds us accountable for what he ordains to come to pass. Here Scripture is silent, and we have to agree with Berkhof that ultimately “the problem of God’s relation to sin remains a mystery" (Systematic Theology, p.331. emphasis mine)

    This is totally unbiblical and blasphemous! God “ordains” that we sin against Him, which He actually forbids that we do; and then when we do what He Himself “ordains”, God holds us responsible, and punishes us for doing what He has already “ordained”! This is TOTALLY INSANE!

    God, in His Infinite Wisdom, has, for reasons that are only known to Himself, PERMITTED that we sin, which He also ALLOWS, and then USES them for His own purposes.

    It is VERY WRONG for Bible translations, like the King James, to read in Isaiah 45:7;

    “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things”

    The same Hebrew verb used in Genesis 1:1, “bā·rā” (Created), that is used here. The reading in Versions like the KJV, make God the actual Author of EVIL, which is an IMPOSSIBILITY!

    The Hebrew adjective, “rā‘”, also has the meaning, “bad, unpleasant, giving pain, unhappiness, misery” (BDB, Hebrew Lexicon)

    God does indeed USE the sinful actions of humans, as He did in the Death of Jesus Christ.

    In Acts 2:23, Peter says, “Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death”

    This does NOT mean that God “CAUSED” these wicked people to do what they did. God FORESAW their evil deeds, and USED this for His Purposes. God did not “CAUSE” Judas to betray Jesus Christ, which Judas did for his own FREE WILL, and was RESPONSIBLE for his own actions. God did indeed USE this for His Purposes.

    A good example of God USING the sinful actions of humans, is found in 1 Kings 22:19-23, where we read of the evil king Ahab, where God USES, and not CAUSES, the evil lying spirit, to pronounce His Righteous Judgements on this wicked king.

    It is a Biblical IMPOSSIBILITY for God to “control” the SINFUL and WICKED actions that are carried out every day by sinners against Himself.

    This does NOT in any way makes God not Absolutely Sovereign, because He has Created all humans with a FREE WILL, to do good or evil.
     
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  2. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
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    Interesting study. Again, a bit too long for most to fully read.
    But I’ll be following this thread.


    Matthew 6:13 (NASB 2020): And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil.’

    Rob
     
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  3. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    I understand "ponērós" as masculine here, and rightly "evil one", as in the devil (as in NIV, NLT, NKJV, CSB, HCSB, NET, WEB, etc)

    The Greek noun "peirasmós", does not only mean "temptation", but also "testing and trials", which is what the Lord does do to His children.

    James 1:13-15 is clear that God cannot "tempt" anyone

    "Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death"
     
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  4. Plavious

    Plavious Member

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    This does NOT mean that God “CAUSED” these wicked people to do what they did. God FORESAW their evil deeds, and USED this for His Purposes. God did not “CAUSE” Judas to betray Jesus Christ, which Judas did for his own FREE WILL, and was RESPONSIBLE for his own actions. God did indeed USE this for His Purposes.
    This does NOT in any way makes God not Absolutely Sovereign, because He has Created all humans with a FREE WILL, to do good or evil.[/QUOTE]
    Wondering, why will God not stop the wicked from perpetuating wickedness on others. This I have often asked myself.

    Why is he abandon the weak and give strength to the wicked?
    Why will God not just kill the oppressors?
    Why will God bless the selfish?

    Humans has this protective nature and will go to any extent to protect it siblings. Can God not protect his siblings from wolves?
     
  5. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    Isaiah 45:7, . . . and create evil: . . . . cross references Genesis 1:1, . . . In the beginning God created . . . . and in Genesis 2:9, . . . and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

    Now two things to note. God is the infinitely good. And evil cannot exist without there being finite good.
     
  6. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    If the God of the Bible does not control the devil, then He cannot be Almighty, and the devil is more powerful than He is, which is the HIGHEST BLASPHEMY!

    No one can honestly question God's overall control of His Creation. What we are talking about, is OUR personal CHOICES, when we CHOOSE by our God-given FREE WILL, to, either obey or disobey the Lord.

    Adam and Even were clearly told by God not to eat the fruit of a certain tree; then we have the father of lies, the devil, who comes and directly contradicts God, and persuades them to disobey what God has Commanded them not to do.

    It was their FREE CHOICE, and NOT that God somehow "failed" to get them to listen to Him, when they CHOSE to disobey Him

    We know from the Book of Job, that the devil is subject to God, and can only do as much as he is "allowed" to. God has, for reasons that He has not told us, in His Infinite Wisdom, to "allow" His adversary, the devil, to continue his wicked ways in our world. God can in a second destroy the devil and his wicked angels, but for His own reasons, which are 100% Just, not done so.

    The devil causes both the unrighteous and righteous to sin and fall every single day. There are many Christian leaders who have been greatly deceived by the devil, and sadly, many have fallen into gross sin. I also from time to time disobey the Lord, when I don't fully follow what the Bible Teaches, which I very much regret.

    The fact that God has in His own Wisdom, so decided to allow even His own children to sin against Him, is clear that in this personal sense, due to human FREE WILL, mean that God does not "control" all of human actions. If He did, then there would be ZERO sin in this world, and all Christians would 100% of the time do His will. This is not the case.

    None of this in any way take away from God's Sovereignty, or make Him not in TOTAL CONTROL of His complete Creation
     
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  7. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    why are you misusing what Isaiah 45:7 actually says, as I have clearly shown in the OP?

    Be very careful not to make God the author of sin!
     
  8. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    Did you deny God is the infinite good? Did you deny God's creation is good? Did you deny the tree of knowledge of good and evil came from God? Are you denying evil needs good to even exist?
     
  9. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Are you saying that God is the author of sin?
     
  10. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    Can God who is the infinite good be the author of sin?
    God said, Isaiah 45:7 what the Hebrew says He said.
    And Genesis 2:9, And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
    Do you not understand evil needs finite good that can be perverted, or there can be no evil?

    Matthew 25:41, . . . everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: . . .
     
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  11. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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  12. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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    6 And God said unto him in the dream, Yea, I know that in the integrity of thy heart thou has done this, and I also withheld thee from sinning against me. Therefore suffered I thee not to touch her. Gen 20

    17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are contrary the one to the other; that ye may not do the things that ye would. Gal 5
     
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  13. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
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    Paul Helm in the series "Contours of Christian Theology" wrote a book that touches on this topic called The Providence of God.
    It's a rather dense, philosophical treatise, not an easy read. I'd recommend it for anyone interested in the topic and with a proclivity towards theological philosophy.

    As I was reading Helm's book, John Piper published his brick of a book, Providence. It's an easier read but looong and redundant. Yet typical Piper, he is quite insightful if you can get past his verbiage.

    ...God causes, ordains, governs, decrees, produces, authors, guides, leads into, brings about, rules, determines, controls, regulates, decides, defines, and more. None of those words will avoid misunderstanding. My point is not to despair of clear communication. I think it is possible. I am aiming at it. My point is that we must regularly clarify with clear sentences what we mean by our words. Here is one of the most important clarifying sentences recurring in various forms throughout this book: Whatever verb I use to describe God’s relation to human choices, I always mean a kind of divine “seeing to it” (providence) that never means God sins, or that man is not accountable for his choices. To be specific, God can see to it that sin happens without himself sinning or taking away the responsibility of the sinner. This is not a presupposition. It is a conclusion from biblical texts...
    John Piper, Providence (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2020). p. 411 footnote. [bolding added]​

    Rob
     
    #13 Deacon, Feb 9, 2024
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2024
  14. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Reformed unbiblical nonsense
     
  15. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
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    Eat the meat, spit out the bones. :)

    Rob
     
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  16. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Where is this meat? :Geek
     
  17. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    I agree for the most part.

    My issue is with your definition of "control" (which I accept) and your conclusion (which I do not).

    Here is the definition you offered for "control" as a verb:

    “the power to influence or direct people's behaviour or the course of events”

    Does God influence people to sin? No (we agree here).

    Does God direct people's behavior to sin? Again, no (we agree here).

    BUT does God influence or direct the course of events and people choose to sin given these events?

    I believe so. This does not mean that God is the cause of sin, of course. Men have the freedom to choose to sin and are not dependent on compulsion to do so.

    But sin belongs to man (man's plans belong to him) while the outcome belongs to God.

    So given your definition God does control sin while not being the originator of sin.
     
  18. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Like it or not, what you are saying makes God the author of sin
     
  19. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    It wasn't what I was saying (it was a proverb found in Scripture).

    And no, God working all things for the good does not make God the Author of sin.

    Jesus choosing Judas did not make Jesus the Author of his sin. Neither did God using Judas to deliver Christ to the Jewish rulers make God the Author of sin.


    You are taking philosophy too far and it is skewing your view.

    C.S. Lewis observed that many try to look through everything and end up seeing nothing for the effort. Scripture is correct. Man's plans belong to man, God controls his steps.
     
  20. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    Not really. I am pointing out the hijacking of the ENGLISH language and it BASE meanings by some who WREST it as they do the Bible, like some "Reformed" making FOREKNOWN the SAME as FOREORDAIN!

    Jesus "chose" Judas because as God He KNEW that he would betray Him, and USED him for His purposes!

    You too are falling into the MISUSE of words and phrases by the "Reformed"
     
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