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Featured Non-Calvinist Help- Questions

Discussion in 'Calvinism & Arminianism Debate' started by zrs6v4, Mar 25, 2024.

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  1. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    Actually that is a good working definition of the sovereignty of God as the bible has described it.

    I said everyone is given an opportunity to know God and will be held responsible for how they respond. God destroyed the would by water because man rejected Him. He destroyed pagan nations because they rejected Him. God destroyed Israelites that rejected Him. And He will destroy all those that reject Him. How is that not treating all the same. All are judged by the same standard, how do you respond to your knowledge of God.

    If you think one is only saved by how they respond to the gospel then you have to explain the OT saints. What does Romans 1:18-21 tell us. Man could know God but has chosen to reject Him but this is not without remedy as we see in Romans 4:2-8. Those that have the faith of Abraham in the living God will be saved.

    You continue to say man that freely trusts in Christ has reason to boast but the bible disagrees with you. Romans 3:27 We could boast if we were saved by our works but not if we are saved through our faith. But the calvinist can boast on the idea that they were so special that God chose them out of all the rest to save. So God must have seen something in them that prompted Him to pick them or it was arbitrary and since we know that God is not arbitrary He must have seen something in them. Thus, under calvinism, they have reason to boast.

    I can say without a doubt why I was saved. It is not because I was smarter or luckier or because of my good works or merit. I was not saved by my faith but rather because of my faith in the faithful one, Christ Jesus. Salvation is a gift that one receives through faith. Ephesians 2:8-9

    What does the calvinist say, they were saved and then given faith That is an unbiblical view. It is not support by scripture but they will persist in that view. Why?
     
  2. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    I have had numerous calvinist's make that claim but none have provided clear contextual biblical support for the view.
     
  3. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    I have never said man can save himself and of course we are saved by the mercy of God but He will only save those that trust in Him. That is the condition He has set Romans 1:16, Ephesians 1:13, Ephesians 2:8-9 all support this.

    John 1:11 He came to His own
    and
    His own did not receive Him
    John 1:12 But as many as received Him
    to them He gave the right to become children of God
    to those who believe in His name
    John 1:13 who were born
    not of blood {through having Christian parents}
    nor of the will of the flesh {can not save themselves}
    nor of the will of man {no man can save another person}
    but of God. {Ephesians 2:8 By His grace because of their faith}
     
  4. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire Well-Known Member
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    Thanks, my wife Pam btw is going into surgery next week to remove a tumor so we covet your prayers.
     
  5. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    But you have missed the point. You were picked out for some reason or it was an arbitrary choice. Since God is not arbitrary that leaves reason. So what was it? Were you just lucky? It could not even be your foreseen faith as calvinist's say they are saved before they believe and have to be given faith. To say it was because you were humble well that is illogical as you were not even born at that time.

    Plus the bible say this
    Rom 3:29 Or is He the God of the Jews only? Is He not also the God of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also,
    Rom 3:30 since there is one God who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith.

    So faith is a condition and the calvinist does not have any prior to salvation according to your own teachings.

    “A man is not saved because he believes in Christ; he believes in Christ because he is saved”. [L. Boettner The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, Page 75]
     
  6. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    What day? I will put a note in my devotional.
     
  7. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire Well-Known Member
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    April 8th in the morning. Around 8Am EST
     
  8. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
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    Then your definition of grace is not a biblical. Grace is dependent upon God and nothing about man

    Thankfully, God saves irrespective of man’s actions because none seek after God
     
  9. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
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    So God is at the mercy of man’s actions

    God is hostage to no one and no man

    nothing Biblical about it
     
  10. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
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    Surely, you know LB was a Calvinist
     
  11. DaveXR650

    DaveXR650 Well-Known Member

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    Of course it is. Most of the Calvinist positions are well backed up with supporting scripture.
    Read the scriptures and you will see that the Israelites were not treated the same as the other groups. Don't misunderstand me here. I agree that there is an aspect of judgement as well as mercy as God deals with us. And maybe Calvinists overdo the sovereign selection ideas while overlooking that aspect. But when you go too far in your free will direction you reduce it to a set of principles proposed, with your decision being the deciding factor. That is clearly not a satisfactory explanation nor is it biblical. Read Romans chapter 11 and see the interplay of God's sovereignty and peoples unbelief. Verse 8 clearly shows God's sovereignty, while verse 22 shows the responsibility of us to respond to God. There are many scriptures showing God acting sovereignly in men's salvation, moving as he will and even hardening as he will. But I agree that other verses warn us to respond correctly to light we are given and seem to assume we can respond and I take those verses as being equally true. Edwards, Owen, Hodge, Bonar, Bunyan, Spurgeon and every Calvinist preacher I can think of preaches that so I venture to say that a blanket refutation of all things Calvinistic based on such a concept falls short.
     
  12. DaveXR650

    DaveXR650 Well-Known Member

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    The idea that the choice is either arbitrary or based on a virtuous quality is not a true choice. All Calvinism says is that there was no identifiable quality of goodness or virtue found in men who are saved that prompted God to save. It leaves the reasons to God and out of our judgement or scrutiny. That does not mean it has to be arbitrary or by chance.
    I find that to be a difficulty too. I don't know if Calvinistic theology is correct when it has born again people walking around who don't believe yet. I honestly don't know the precise time relationship between conviction, enlightenment, saving faith and so on. I don't think a verse that says a born again person believes is necessarily trying to make a chronological statement but it's just stating the simple fact that is indeed true - born again people are believers. I defer to others on that issue.
     
  13. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    How do you define biblical grace since you say mine is not. Have you not read Eph 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith... What do you think that means? And what does this mean '(by grace you have been saved),'

    Explain this verse according to your understanding of grace and why were they saved.
    Act 15:11 "But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they."

    You say none seek after God but there are at least 20 verses that show man seeking after God. Here are a few.

    Deu_4:29 "But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you seek Him with all your heart and with all your soul.
    1Ch_22:19 "Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God.
    Psa 69:32 The humble shall see this and be glad; And you who seek God, your hearts shall live.
    Mat 6:33 "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

    So God expects us to seek Him which would be rather odd if we were not able to do so.

    Now I suspect you are referring to Rom 3:11 when you say none seek God but you need to understand that the Greek word translated as "who seeks after G1567 (G5723)" is in the present tense which means it shows a simple statement of fact or reality viewed as occurring in actual time. The action is Progressive (Continuous)

    The verse could be translated as no one always seeks after God.

    You say God just saves for no apparent reason, there are no conditions. So why are we told to trust in, have faith in, draw near to Christ if there are not conditions. For that matter why the cross or the gospel message? 0-

    It seems to me that you are trusting in what some calvinist has told you rather that trust in what the Holy Spirit has said.
     
  14. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    Yes I know that he was a calvinist thus the comment re what calvinist's hold to re faith.

    Read what I wrote

    So faith is a condition of salvation and the calvinist does not have any faith prior to salvation according to your own teachings.

    “A man is not saved because he believes in Christ; he believes in Christ because he is saved”. [L. Boettner The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, Page 75]
     
  15. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    On that point I would strongly disagree. Pulling verses out of context does not support a view.


    Were all those groups judged for how they responded to God, YES. Was Israel judged for how they responded to God, YES. Yes Israel was God's chosen people but they still were dealt with in the same way re sin.

    You do realize that the condition that God has set for salvation is faith in His son. So ones faith does in a sense become the deciding factor. Faith = salvation, no faith = no salvation. God is the one who saves but He only saves those that meet His stated condition.
    Joh 3:18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned;
    but he who does not believe is condemned already,
    because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    You can not get it any clearer than that. How do you understand that verse.

    Here is an example of free will both in turning away from and the ability to turn back to God. The bible is clear that man is responsible for his choices.
    Mat_13:15 For the hearts of this people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, And their eyes they have closed, Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, So that I should heal them.'

    Even though the Israelites had grown dull to the point that God had dulled their understanding of scripture He has not closed it off for all time has he as we see in Rom 11:23 And they also, if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again.

    What you said re what every calvinist preacher preaches causes me to wonder about how they reconcile the TUILP and man having no free will with what you just said. How can man make a choice to turn and trust how can they freely respond if they have no free will with which to do so?

    What I have found in listening to and reading calvinist's is that they have to hold to free will whether they like it or not. That or say that their determinist version of God is also the author of sin as He has to control all things, both the good and the bad. Or as one calvinist put it "or He is not sovereign"
     
  16. DaveXR650

    DaveXR650 Well-Known Member

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    All those groups were not given the Law, or sent a Moses, or guided by a visible sign of God. All individuals are not taught the gospel, or struck down by a blinding light, or witness to miracles, and so on.
    I agree with that. I think the only difference is that you have a much higher view of the independent ability of men to evaluate and decide on the propositions of the gospel. I think we are much less in control of that than you. Even if you only accept that faith can be built in a person by them watching events unfold and experiencing various things in their lives, such events and experiences are in no way equal in everyone or every group. It is either due to Providence or chance or some combination of those. I believe there is adequate proof from scripture that our natural default position tends to be to not be attracted to God's perfection and nature and we won't come of our own free will without it being influenced by the Spirit. That is not to say there are not variations in natural virtue and tendency to be attracted to God. There are. And that is not to say that we cannot blow it when God calls.
    Correct. You have personal guilt, collective guilt, and judicial hardening by God in the times he chose. You have to keep all
    of that in mind at the same time. One does not discount the other.
    I would say that first of all, it is a misuse of your theology to preach only your theology. Many of these men were teaching before the TULIP and their primary goal was to correctly teach, not to promote the TULIP. Secondly, no matter what the correct answer is on how a decision is arrived at, or how we come to faith, the fact is, as a human, we will express that as a free will decision. It simply becomes apparent to you that something is true whereas before, you did not believe. How you came to that we cannot know. Even if you are a person who heard the gospel, and after much consideration, decided to believe, if you really think about it, there is a moment in time where it's as if a light comes on and you realize that this is all true and even if you say you decided to trust Christ, the fact is, at a moment in time, did not Christ become valuable to you, attractive to you, important to you, worthy of your devotion? How did that happen. I say the Holy Spirit was involved and even decisive.

    And while I don't think it is absolutely necessary to adhere to a theological system, I would say that what we call Calvinism, except in it's extreme forms, does a good job of systematizing these concepts into a theology. But I would recommend for all of us that we take the teaching of these guys over their theology. Gill for instance, is more rigidly deterministic than I am but if you read his teaching it is excellent. Same with Wesley on the other side.
     
  17. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    But all had the knowledge of creation, conviction of the Holy Spirit so they had no excuse. The bible never says all are treated equally but it does say all will be judged as they have no excuse. Sin is sin no matter what group we are speaking of. To reverse what you said, since all those other nation did not have what Israel had then they should not have been judged as Israel. But in actual fact they were judged more harshly than Israel.

    God has a higher view of man's ability to evaluate the information than you give them credit for. Rom 1:16, Joh 3:18 You say the influence of the Holy Spirit has to be decisive, but think about that for a second. If one will only believe if the Holy Spirit causes them to then all those that do not receive that decisive influence have the best excuse going, God did not cause me to believe. You have now taken all responsibility away from the person and laid it on God. That is the opposite of what we see in scripture.
    The reality is that the Holy Spirit does convict all of their sin, that is the influence but it is not decisive as many ignore the conviction. God has provided the means with which to know Him but man has to make the decision.

    I see personal guilt, collective guilt still being in play now but I have not seen judicial hardening by God in the gentile nations or in Israel post the cross. I stand to be corrected on that if you can point to some event you think shows judicial hardening.

    Dave you just confirmed what I have been saying all along. If one will teach the gospel as found in the bible you have to agree that man has a free will. One can not preach, if you will turn to Christ, if you will repent and still hold to what calvinism teaches. Calvin taught that God had made His choice of who would and would not be saved and it could not be altered. So to peach as if man had a choice when you believe he does not is disingenuous. That is a major problem that I see in calvinism they want to say God has determined all things and then say man is responsible for their sins that God has determined they do. Calvinism to me is inconsistent and I get that from what I hear and read from calvinists.

    Where you see the calvinist systematizing as a plus I see it as a negative. Calvinism has removed the responsibility from man, if your picked all well and good if not oh well jut your bad luck. You say well that is just the extreme forms but read some of the threads on this board, it is not just the extreme that hold to the DoG/TULIP or whatever they call it.
     
  18. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire Well-Known Member
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    When this is all said & done, I’m convinced that my human nature is flawed and I’m drawn to sin like a moth to a backyard porch light. What I have witnessed in life has horrified me but hasn’t deterred me from fighting the fight and working toward the unfair advantage and that method ie working my arse off, attention to details, sleepless nights, outthinking opponents, even subterfuge etc are my prescriptions for success…indeed, ‘manufactured preeminence.’ That’s all Free Will stuff, however there is something in that I have no control of and that’s providence … the grace that has been gifted that’s unmerited & that’s always a surprise and a joy to behold.

    But there are also those crushing times that I also recognize as “carrying one’s own cross” times. They can seem to go on forever!

    Now recently, I have fallen back in love with the first book of the Bible and have revisited it recently. The passage that for me anyway, very positive and takes the burdens of the world off my shoulders:

    Genesis 18:25. Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?
     
    #98 Earth Wind and Fire, Apr 3, 2024
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2024
  19. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
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    @Silverhair does the Bible teach that man is at the mercy of God?

    If so, what exactly does that mean?

    thx
     
  20. Silverhair

    Silverhair Well-Known Member

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    What do you think mercy means? What you fail to realize is that because He is merciful He will not condemn a person that has no ability to do otherwise. Calvinism tends to ignore that part of His mercy.

    Calvinists want God to determine all things yet balk the idea that their view makes God the only agent so is responsible for all the sin and evil in the world.
     
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