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Is it the will of God...

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Joseph_Botwinick, Dec 25, 2002.

  1. russell55

    russell55 New Member

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    Let me turn this around and ask you some questions.

    Does God know these babies are being aborted?

    Could He prevent it?

    If you answer yes to both of these questions, then answer this one. Does God make a reasoned (or purposeful) decision not to prevent certain abortions, or does He just arbitrarily prevent some abortions and not others?
     
  2. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Sure.

     
  3. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
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    Yes.
    Because abortion is murder and therefore a sin. But, yes, in the grand scheme of things, for whatever reason, God has chosen to permit murder, rape, incest, homosexuality, theft, etc., or else He is powerless to stop it.

    Now, for you Joseph (or anyone else):
    1. Is it God's permissive will for thousands of babies to be murdered each year at abortion clinics? Yes or No? (Please limit your answer to these two choices).
    2. Is God's permissive will His will? If not, is His permissive will against His will? Yes or No? (Please limit your answer to these two choices).
    3. Have you stopped beating your wife? Yes or No? (Please limit your answer to these two choices).


    [ December 26, 2002, 04:40 PM: Message edited by: rlvaughn ]
     
  4. Terry_Herrington

    Terry_Herrington New Member

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  5. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    In no way.

    I believe he is too. But I define free will very differently than you do. You believe that free will is teh ability to do anything. Your very definition would deny free will to God who cannot sin. I define free will as the ability to do anything in accordance with the nature. Therefore, man has free will; he can do anything his nature will allow him. This is the only way to be consistent.

    Lastly, as to sovereignty and granting man free will (as you define it), once God gives up control, he is no longer sovereign. He can take it back to be sure. But if one choice is outside of his control, he is not sovereign. That is the issue, IMO. If God gave "free will" (as you define it) to man, then he is not sovereign for the period of time until he takes it back.
     
  6. Aaron

    Aaron Member
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    My last post had nothing to do with the post right above it.

    Folks seem to think simply because murderers are acting in accordance with the will of God that God could not blame them.

    Paul lays that notion in the dust. ;)
     
  7. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    Unless one is willing to say that God wills evil (and thus would be the author of it), then either
    1. abortions are not evil
    or
    2. God Himself does not define good and evil

    By trying to get aborted babies mixed up with the crucifixion, a giant red herring was dragged across the path of this discussion.

    Take a look at Genesis 15:16 -- God is telling Abraham about the claim of his descendents to the Promised Land, "In the fourth generation your descendants will come back here, for the sin of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure."

    It is sin which results in evil. This is biblical. Sin is rebellion against God. This, too, is biblical. The claim is being made in this thread by those of the Calvinist pursuasion that God has thus willed rebellion against Himself.

    But Paul says God's will is good, pleasing and perfect -- Romans 12:2. So if God has willed abortions, then either abortions are good, pleasing, and perfect in line with God's will, or God is in the strange position of having willed sin, evil -- rebellion against Himself. That seems to put Him awfully close to schizophrenic.

    In the case of the Amorites, was it then God's will that their sin increase, or was He saying He would not make a move against them as a society until their sin increased, which, being God, He knew it would?

    The crux of the argument here is whether man can go against God's will. The Calvinist says no, therefore all that happens, happens because God wills it so. This also puts man in the position of being a programmed robot and not a creation in the image of God at all!

    The other side of the argument is that God has ALLOWED evil, for if He did not, then we would never know the horror that sin against God actually can produce. We would never want to repent or change anything.

    The Calvinist says we cannot want to change unless God puts that want into us. This, again, declares us robots, not at all created in the image of God as thinking, reasoning beings. It also makes Isaiah 1:14, where God says "Come, let us reason together" quite a strange thing for Him to say.

    But if man can reason, as looking at the threads on BB and other places, as well as in the literature and in personal relationships will affirm, and if man is indeed limited and fallible, which is also quite evident, then reasoning is going to result in different conclusions simply by the nature of what reasoning is!

    And none of those conclusions need be right!

    Nevertheless God says, "Come, let us reason together." And He says it is for a purpose, which He states immediately following -- so that a person may repent and be changed. Thus, God Himself associates our ability to reason with the issue of salvation.

    Can we then reason our way into salvation? No, that is not the point either. But by way of reason we CAN see our own condition and the need for salvation...

    And by way of reason we CAN see that God, if God is intrinsically good (Matthew 19:17), is not going to will evil. However He has allowed it for the purposes of our reason so that we can see the result of rebellion against Him.

    The killing of tiny babies is evil. God is in charge of life, both coming and going. God has NOT willed abortion ("See to it that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell ou that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven." Matt. 18:10-11), but has allowed it, at least in part to show us the result of where twisted reasoning, based on something other than Him, can lead -- what the results of rebellion against Him are.

    There is a purpose involved -- Romans 8:28 -- or He would not allow it. But for anyone to state that abortions are God's will for these babies is totally absurd when we are told the character of God is love, good, justice, mercy, etc.

    Either that, or we do not know what love, goodness, justice, mercy and the rest are -- our ideas of them are totally confused. And, in that case, these words have no meanings at all.

    And God is NOT the author of confusion.

    Those words have real and understood meaning.

    As does the command, "Choose this day whom you will serve."
     
  8. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Have any of you ever wondered why we argue over theology seeing how no one is saved by theology. We are saved by trusting in the finished work of Christ Jesus alone. Whether or not we correctly understand how and why we came to trust is of secondary importance.

    I am beginning to wonder if perhaps all of our argumentation over how and why we come to Jesus is a waste of time. Perhaps we should stop arguing and start encouraging. [​IMG]
     
  9. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    But since I am sure the argumentation will continue, [​IMG] I submit the following for discussion from www.hisremnant.org/eby/articles/savior/moralagent.html

    If any man had brought himself into being, then we can conceive of the possibility of his having something to say about his condition and destiny. But mankind had absolutely nothing whatever to do with his coming into this world. It was the choice of God. God chose to bring this creature into existence because He had a definite plan for him in His creative purposes in the whole universe. It was God who formed man of the dust of the ground. It was God who breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. It was God who placed man in the Garden of Eden. It was God who planted the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the midst of the Garden. It was God who gave the law that man should not eat of it. And it was God who made the serpent and put him in the Garden and sent him along one beautiful day to tempt the man. It was GOD!

    Even if Adam was a free moral agent, God is responsible for what happened in the Garden, for whatever a free moral agent may do, He is responsible for it who made him a free moral agent. If God made man a free moral agent, then God created within man the propensities for either good or evil which determined his choices. If God made man a free moral agent, He knew beforehand what the result would be, and hence is just as responsible for the consequences of the acts of that free moral agent as He would be for the act of an irresponsible machine that He had made. Man's free moral agency, even if it were true, would by no means clear God from the responsibility of his acts since God is his Creator and has made him in the first place just what he is, well knowing what the result would be. If God's will is ever thwarted, then He is not almighty. If His will is thwarted, then His plans must be changed, and hence He is not all-wise and immutable. If His will is never thwarted, then all things are in accordance with His will and He is the architect of all things as they exist. If He is all-wise and all-good, then all things, existing according to His will, must be working toward some wise and wonderful end!

    "What shall we conclude then? Is there injustice on God's part? Certainly not! For He says to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then God's gift is not a question of human will and human effort, but of God's mercy. It depends not one ones own willingness ... but on God's having mercy on him. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, I have raised you up for this very purpose of displaying My power in dealing with you, so that My name may be proclaimed the whole world over. So then He has mercy on whomever He wills (chooses) and He hardens - makes stubborn and unyielding of heart - whomever He wills. You will say to me, Why then does He still find fault and blame us for sinning? For who can resist and withstand His will? But who are you, a mere man, to criticize and contradict and answer back to God? Will what is formed say to him that formed it, Why have you made me thus? Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same mass one vessel for beauty and distinction and honorable use, and another for menial or ignoble and dishonorable use?" (Rom. 9:14-21, Amplified).
     
  10. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
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    Helen - and all on this side of the fence - though we may explain things differently, the practical effect of either position is the same. In your case, you try to distance God's involvement in the act by saying that He allowed it. Yet you believe He allows an evil (abortion) to take place which would be in His power to prevent (unless you believe He is powerless to prevent it).
     
  11. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Helen,

    You can say that with a straight face all the while at the same time believing that God's "allowing" of evil will result in tens of billions of people being tormented forever and ever and ever and ever in hell, while believing that only a very, very tiny percentage of people will be in heaven by their "free will"? And this just so we can know how horrible sin is in God's sight? And for no other purpose? That's sad, Helen, that's very sad. :(
     
  12. Aaron

    Aaron Member
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    Red herring?? It is not. But we understand why you would want to dismiss it as such. It forces you to admit that murder was part of God's will for His Son, therefore it flings the door wide open to allow the possibility that murder could be part of the will of God for any individual. Even a babe.

    Paul said, In every thing give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

    Notice the phrase, "every thing."

    There is not a Christian martyr in history that was not murdered, and all confessed that this was God's will concerning them.

    [ December 26, 2002, 07:14 PM: Message edited by: Aaron ]
     
  13. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    As a parent, I know well that what is my will and what I will allow in the house can be two entirely different things! For instance, I will allow certain things to happen in order to teach a lesson. But they are not what I would have wanted had my child been obedient.

    My mother did the same with me. I remember vividly a time when, at about six or seven years old, I pretended to be asleep on my bed when I knew the family was getting ready to go to the circus. I wanted to see if my mother "loved me enough" to wake me up and go with them (we had a maid who would be at home, so I could be safely left). My mother loved me enough to recognize that I was faking and decided it was time for me to stop playing those games, so she respected what I was 'saying' with my 'sleep' and 'allowed' me to stay home.

    I didn't try to fake her out again in a hurry! But my staying home was definitely NOT what she had wanted for me!

    And yes, God does allow pain and suffering and evil so we will see the results of sin. Thus, those who are in hell are there because they have refused all these lessons and hardened their hearts to the truth so consistently that God has finally said, "You want it? You've got it."

    It's not that HE wanted anyone to go to hell. Hell was created for the devil and his cohorts. It was not created for man. Man has had to choose it by refusing God. But the Bible says quite plainly God is not willing that one should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

    And yes, He has allowed the results of rebellion to be seen. It has shocked some into repentance. And He will do everything except violate the very freedom He has given us, to demonstrate to us the difference between Him and evil.

    Meanwhile, the babies are with Him. There is no one in hell who has not refused God on a conscious, consistent basis.
     
  14. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    So, Helen, according to your system of beliefs it is better for just about the whole human race to suffer eternal torment in hell with their "free will" intact, while a very few who were smart enough, wise enough, lucky enough, whatever, to use their "free will" to repent and believe enjoy the bliss of heaven forever and ever. To use your terminology I would rather be a "robot" in heaven than to have my "free will" in hell.

    The gospel means good news. [​IMG] Helen, your version of it ain't for just about all human beings who will ever live. :(

    And, by the way, your position as parent does not compare in magnitude or power to God's position as God.

    [ December 26, 2002, 07:40 PM: Message edited by: Ken H ]
     
  15. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    Red herring?? It is not. But we understand why you would want to dismiss it as such. It forces you to admit that murder was part of God's will for His Son, therefore it flings the door wide open to allow the possibility that murder could be part of the will of God for any individual. Even a babe.

    Paul said, In every thing give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

    Notice the phrase, "every thing."

    There is not a Christian martyr in history that was not murdered, and all confessed that this was God's will concerning them.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Aaron, who murdered Christ? He is the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. Who murdered Him then? It was worked out in time, and Christ Himself says clearly He has/had the power to both lay down his life and take it up again. It may have appeared murder to onlookers, but with Christ no one could have done anything to Him He had not decided upon already.

    Aborted babies are not in that position.

    If you are saying that murder is part of God's will, when why would He demand capital punishment for it?

    If you are saying murder is part of God's will, then murder is not evil, for God's will is perfect and good.

    If you are saying murder is part of God's will, then Christ was clearly out of bounds for condemning anger in a man's heart which led to murder. For anyone doing God's will is doing what is perfect and good.

    What is God's will for us regarding thanks is that we give HIM thanks in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. This is not because the circumstances are good -- often they are not. But rather it is because God is God, and the circumstances have been allowed because they can be used by Him for your good if you love Him. That is what Romans 8:28 is saying as well as what Paul is saying. The fact that God knows how to use the evil He has permitted is NOT the same as Him willing that evil.

    If you honestly believe that, you will never dare discipline your children for anything, for God would have willed their actions and evil doings.

    Martyrdom was used by God. Please show me where it ever says it was willed by Him. Where is it ever written that He said anything along the lines of "This is what I want...that the faithful shall be impaled alive, set on fire, fed to angry beasts, shot with poisoned arrows, tortured, drawn and quartered, etc. etc." I read where God has said we will be persecuted, but I do not read where God has said that is what He wants for us. I read where God has said He will use what He has allowed to happen, but I also read where God declares woe on those through whom the evil comes.

    Why on earth that last if evil was part of His plan and purpose and will?

    No way.
     
  16. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    And, by the way, your position as parent does not compare in magnitude or power to God's position as God.</font>[/QUOTE]Ken, Calvinism has them -- the vast majority -- suffering eternal torment without having ever had a way out of it at all. God said He is not willing that one should perish. That means they have gone against His will, purposely and consistently, not that He created them to go to hell.

    And my position as a parent is just as much a picture of a spiritual truth as a grapevine is of Jesus. Not nearly the magnitude, but given to us to help us understand spiritual truths. In fact, I am getting to the point in my own walk with the Lord that I am thinking perhaps there is NOTHING in the physical world that does not have a message to give us regarding some kind of spiritual truth. God's economy, I have found, wastes nothing.
     
  17. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Not my brand. [​IMG]

    Ken
     
  18. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Yea, Helen, that's really "good news". I guess in your scheme of things Christians should be honest up front when witnessing to the lost, by telling them that "I have good news for you. By your free will you can avoid eternal torment and live forever in heaven. But to be honest, hardly any of you will exercise your free will to be saved. But at least you had an opportunity, compared to the tens of billions that never heard the gospel, so just remember that while you are writhing in flames and being eaten on by worms. At least you still have your free will."
     
  19. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    Ken, please don't misrepresent my position, OK? You know that I have stated over and over again that all people from all time have had enough of the gospel of a coming Messian/Redeemer or the one that came (depending on which side of time you live on) to trust God and thus be saved by faith in that Redeemer.

    No one -- NO ONE -- has HAD to go to hell apart from his own choice. God meant it when He had Peter write so clearly that He is not willing that ONE should perish.

    We do know that not many enter the narrow gate, but that does not mean they were not given the choice to do so.
     
  20. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Helen,

    And how did someone living in Siberia in 1500 B.C. know about the Jews expecting the Messiah?
     
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