1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Featured What is the Moral Justification of God's Asking Abraham to Sacrifice Isaac?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by StefanM, Aug 2, 2016.

  1. JonC

    JonC Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2001
    Messages:
    33,493
    Likes Received:
    3,567
    Faith:
    Baptist
    The command is very unusual. Imagine if you were Abraham and God commanded you to offer as a sacrifice (to kill) the very one whom God had promised you would be the heir to His promise. Abraham, through faith, reasoned that God would resurrect Isaac because Abraham knew that God was righteous (that God was faithful to His word). But God had other plans.

    The only satisfactory answer that I can give you insofar as Abraham's obedience in the face of
    God's command is to obey regardless as to our reasoning or our theologies. Faith is obedience regardless of the command suiting our rationale. This was the faith of Abraham. God commanded it - do it. Regardless of our expectations God will work it for the good. Notice....Abraham's expectations were wrong, but his faith was not misplaced.
     
  2. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    9,501
    Likes Received:
    1,241
    Faith:
    Baptist
    The identities of the LORD and his angel are blurred in the Genesis 22 passage.

    • Note that Abraham didn't argue with God concerning the appropriateness of the sacrifice. It was within God's prerogative to ask whatever he willed. Focusing on verse 2 alone shows us an awesome, fearsome God.
    • Note that Abraham knew the voice which called him from heaven and responds to it - without knowing himself that it was an angel/messenger (the narrator provides that information).
    • Note the angel/messenger commends Abraham for his faith, "...since you have not withheld your son, your only child, from me.”, ...and Abraham's sacrifice was to God.
    • Note in verse 15, the angel/messenger calls out again and puts himself in the place of the LORD, "I swear by myself, declares the LORD..."
    • Note that if you focus on the whole narrative, (the command to stop, the provision of the ram, the promises), God is gracefully merciful to Abraham and his future descendants of faith and a great and timely provider.
    • Lastly note who the LORD asked him to sacrifice, "...your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac..." (vs 1), As the father of the faithful, Abraham's sacrifice prefigured the sacrifice of God's Son, his only Son, whom he loved!
    Rob
     
  3. Internet Theologian

    Internet Theologian Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2015
    Messages:
    2,223
    Likes Received:
    991
    [Edited]

    That you miss this and rush to a false conclusion concerning, well, GOD, that He doesn't know the beginning from the end (and just think about that implication 'God doesn't know the beginning from the end'?????) is a remarkable thing to behold.

    Really? Yes, why of course, no surprise here, but it does need to be addressed as all false teachings need be.

    Open Theism is a defective and dissenters viewpoint, and you're in error by espousing it. Van, after reading many of your posts, it appears you are more than ready to give man undo glory while you're not so willing to do the same for YHWH based upon proper handling of the Word of God, something you are failing at here, and elsewhere; 2 Timothy 2:15.

    Your error is perhaps an admixture of the humanity of Christ and His being also 100% God. Or, you've been influenced by other Open Theists who do the same. Frankly you're in grave error and your false teachings need to be denied and addressed.

    “Remember this and stand firm,
    recall it to mind, you transgressors,
    remember the former things of old;
    for I am God, and there is no other;
    I am God, and there is none like me,
    declaring the end from the beginning
    and from ancient times things not yet done,
    saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
    and I will accomplish all my purpose,’
    calling a bird of prey from the east,
    the man of my counsel from a far country.
    I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass;
    I have purposed, and I will do it.

    I post the above Scripture for any other to see that your theology is erroneous, that is, that God knows all things, or He could not declare the end from the beginning. Van, the intent for posting this is not that you won't wrest the apparent meaning of the text to fit into your open theistic errors. The objective is for those who are learning, babes who know the truth and are also aware, that God being GOD means that He does not learn, nor does He change.
     
    #23 Internet Theologian, Aug 3, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 3, 2016
  4. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    9,501
    Likes Received:
    1,241
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I think you're reading too much into what Van said IT; I took it to be an agreement partially in jest.

    Rob
     
  5. JonC

    JonC Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2001
    Messages:
    33,493
    Likes Received:
    3,567
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I agree. And for the record, I am the moderator that edited out "Van disagrees with God". I believe that InternetTheologian is reading too much into what Van said, but there is enough here for Van to take up the argument if we have mistaken his position.
     
  6. Internet Theologian

    Internet Theologian Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2015
    Messages:
    2,223
    Likes Received:
    991
    Van's false position and Open Theism is well known by many on BB, it's not like this is all new.

    That you think I've read too much into it (his error) is a pretense on your part, an aspersion, and false jon.

    There was no mistaking his position. Your pretense is overboard and is as remarkable as his errors. He made, and has made his erroneous position clear numerous times. :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. JonC

    JonC Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2001
    Messages:
    33,493
    Likes Received:
    3,567
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Maybe. I have not found Van to espouse open theism, but maybe he will prove me wrong and you right. I'll let Van speak for himself.

    Van....is the position that you are advocating open theism (the theory that God knows all that can be known, but that there is a great extent of future choices that remain unknown because they are dependent upon human decision)? Has InternetTheologian accurately represented your view, or has he misjudged your position?
     
    #27 JonC, Aug 3, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2016
  8. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Messages:
    21,242
    Likes Received:
    2,305
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    STEFAN M,
    I think we can understand more by looking at the inspired commentary from the book of Hebrews, then look back and see the text unfold;
    17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,

    18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:

    19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.

    He believed God in reference to the Covenant promise,.
    He believed God in reference to resurrection power.
    He received Christ in a figure and it is set forth as an example.


    Gen22;
    5 And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass;
    and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.
     
  9. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    26,995
    Likes Received:
    1,021
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Folks that post personal attacks are usually agenda driven. They cannot refute my biblically based views, so they make up falsehoods. I presented what scripture actually says, God declares the end from the beginning. What should be well know is that cyber bullies charge opponents with holding bogus views, as IT did here. I have posted my view on Open Theism about a dozen times over the years. Here it is again:


    Does the Bible teach that God’s knowledge of the future is imperfect, that God confronts the unexpected? Open Theism advocates cite Isaiah 5:1-5 and assert God did not expected good grapes and was surprised when He got wild grapes. But is this what the text actually teaches? Nope.

    The Hebrew word translated in some English versions of the text as “expected” actually means to await an outcome, or to look for an outcome while waiting, or to endure a circumstance for a purpose. Similarly, the Hebrew word translated bad grapes or wild grapes, actually means sour and unripe, suggesting God desired Israel to grow closer to God in its protected vineyard, but since it did not, the hedge was removed, and the environment changed.

    So lets look at the passage using the NIV translation, which actually does justice to the text:
    The Song of the Vineyard

    1 I will sing for the one I love
    a song about his vineyard:
    My loved one had a vineyard
    on a fertile hillside.

    2 He dug it up and cleared it of stones
    and planted it with the choicest vines.
    He built a watchtower in it
    and cut out a winepress as well.
    Then he looked for a crop of good grapes,
    but it yielded only bad fruit.

    3 "Now you dwellers in Jerusalem and men of Judah,
    judge between me and my vineyard.

    4 What more could have been done for my vineyard
    than I have done for it?
    When I looked for good grapes,
    why did it yield only bad?

    5 Now I will tell you
    what I am going to do to my vineyard:
    I will take away its hedge,
    and it will be destroyed;
    I will break down its wall,
    and it will be trampled.

    And now with a sound understanding of Isaiah’s words, lets turn to the Open Theism assertion concerning the text: Because the vineyard unexpectedly failed to yield grapes, the Lord sadly concludes, “I will remove its hedge and it shall be devoured (v5).”

    But the actual message is that God desired for Israel to become more godly, and when they chose to remain worldly, God took action to foster His desired outcome. God may or may not have experienced the feeling of sadness when He took the action, but since the text does not say, we are left with His enduring efforts to draw us closer to Him. So while the text can be used to support the premise God has chosen to allow autonomous behavior rather than deterministically determining every thought and every outcome, it in no way supports the idea that God did not know the hearts of the people of Israel, or that He did not know that they needed to learn that their good fortune was a gift from God.

    The second mistaken view of Open Theism is that God is surprised by the worldly behavior of Israel. To support this contention, Open Theism cites Jeremiah 19:5, but does it say God did not know what the people would do? Nope. Again the word translated “mind” in many English versions of the text actually means “heart” the seat of appetites and inclinations. In other words, Jeremiah was saying God did not desire this behavior.

    Lets look at the verse using the HCSB translation: “5 They have built high places to Baal on which to burn their children in the fire as burnt offerings to Baal, something I have never commanded or mentioned; I never entertained the thought.” With this correct understanding of Jeremiah’s message, we find no support whatsoever for the assertion that God was surprised by their wicked actions. The same thought is expressed in Jeremiah 7:31 (“did not come into My mind”) meaning I did not entertain the thought, or desire the behavior. Ditto for Jeremiah 32:35, all three actually indicate the behavior did not come up upon God’s heart, He did not entertain it nor desire it.

    A third contention of Open Theism is that God thinks one thing is going to happen, but something else happens, indicating God knowledge of the future is wrong. To support this mistaken view, Open Theism cites Jeremiah 3:6-7, but does it say God held a mistaken view of the future? Nope. The verse does say that God said or thought that Israel would repent, but was the thought a desire or a statement of foreseen behavior? Desire. Why desire and not foreseen behavior? Because God says in verse 6 that He knows Israel is “faithless” so desire fits but foreseen faithfulness does not fit with faithlessness.

    Open Theism also cites Jeremiah 3:19-20. Contextually the passage has the return of Christ in view. It is a prophecy of the millennial kingdom, verse 19, contrasted with Israel’s behavior under the Old Covenant, verse 20. And what does Open Theism make of this fairly straightforward passage? It asserts that since Christ has not inaugurated His millennial kingdom yet, God was mistaken in His prophecy. Sorry but that is a mistaken view of the text.

    Does that fact that what God desires does not immediately or universally come to pass indicate God is not all-powerful? Nope. Rather it indicates God desires according to His purpose, and therefore His purpose is for mankind to bring Him glory autonomously, and not under deterministic control.


    OTOH, folk, Calvinism teaches Open Theism. They claim God is not the author of sin, therefore our choice to sin was not predestined by God. But they also teach Closed Theism, that God predestines everything that comes to pass. Yes, they hold mutually exclusive views, irrational and unbiblical.

    Pay no attention to the misrepresentations they post concerning the views of others.
     
  10. StefanM

    StefanM Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,333
    Likes Received:
    210
    Faith:
    Baptist
    So I want to get all of this straight---correct me if I'm wrong because I want to be able to give a good answer if I'm asked:

    1) God commanded Abraham to sacrifice Isaac, knowing that God had no intention of actually allowing the sacrifice to occur.

    2) Abraham trusted God and obeyed, believing that God would raise Isaac from the dead if necessary.

    3) As he ascended the mountain, his comments that God would provide a lamb were genuine comments made of faith.

    4) The Angel of the Lord stopped the sacrifice before it could happen, and a substitute was provided.

    5) In all of this, the foreshadowing of the cross is present.

    Possible implication?
    ---This story reveals that God does not actually want human sacrifice, thus illustrating an important difference between Yahweh and the false "gods" of Canaan (and other places).
     
  11. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Messages:
    21,242
    Likes Received:
    2,305
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    Yes you have the main points. Notice he viewed what they were doing as worship....I and the lad will worship and return.
    God depicts the cross for us,at least one aspect of it in a way that grabs out attention.
    This sacrifice was depicted as taking place where our Lord was later crucified. God does nothing random but is in total control of whatsoever comes to pass.
     
  12. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    52,013
    Likes Received:
    3,649
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Inappropriate in the sense that it was divorced from the context. When asked a question like that your job is to place it back in the appropriate context. When you are asked a question like that, however sincere they may be, you need to refuse to agree to the premise and then set the idea of the question back in its proper setting.
     
  13. StefanM

    StefanM Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,333
    Likes Received:
    210
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I do apologize. It was an unintentional mistake on my part. Sometimes I don't think so clearly.
     
  14. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    52,013
    Likes Received:
    3,649
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I think you have misunderstood my use of the word "inappropriate". I was just stressing that we need to be careful not to divorce parts of events in scripture from their context. Atheists will want to do this for a couple of reasons that I can see; 1.) because the are not spiritual and do not understand spiritual things, 2.) because they want to discredit the bible. When we respond to them, the premise that we can look at the command to sacrifice Isaac can be dealt with on moral grounds and apart from the greater context should be rejected. We should answer them explaining the only way to rightly understand what happened is in the setting of the greater context.
     
    #34 Revmitchell, Aug 4, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2016
  15. StefanM

    StefanM Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,333
    Likes Received:
    210
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Thank you for clarifying. That helps.
     
  16. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    52,013
    Likes Received:
    3,649
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I edited my typos.
     
  17. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    26,995
    Likes Received:
    1,021
    Faith:
    Baptist
    To review, some claim God needs moral justification for testing Abraham. Others (myself included) do not.
    Do we (humans) hold God to the standard He proscribed for us? Simple question. But only those humble of heart are willing to accept the correct (Romans 9) answer.
     
  18. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    26,995
    Likes Received:
    1,021
    Faith:
    Baptist
    1) .is the position that you are advocating open theism? Nope
    2) Has InternetTheologian accurately represented your view, Nope
    3) Has he misjudged your position? I am no mind-reader, he certainly misrepresented it for the apparent purpose of slandering me.

    The Calvinists get away with posting falsehoods about the views of other. I am falsely charged by these cyber bullies about every six months with advocating Open Theism, but the truth is since they do not believe God is the author of sin, they are every bit as much an open theist as are Arminians and non-Cals like me, who believe we choose rather than are compelled to put our trust in Christ. Only when forum leadership tumbles to their MO will anything be done to allow actual discussion of theology, rather than allow their systematic derailment of non-Cal views.

    What could be done? Anytime you see a post which addresses another posters view, and it not supported by a quote, the entire post should be deleted. That would break the back of these bullies.
     
  19. JonC

    JonC Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2001
    Messages:
    33,493
    Likes Received:
    3,567
    Faith:
    Baptist
    We could stop lumping people into categories and start calling others to task when they attribute beliefs to people. While I will point out that a few people here do not constitute the "Calvinists" as a whole, I also feel your pain. I've complained about a couple of people falsely attributing beliefs to me for awhile now. If you single them out you'll get "we all see the truth" nonsense as a reply. All that we can do is insist that others provide evidence for their accusations (which are normally smoke screens) and if they fail request that their posts be deleted.

    Here, however, I will point out that this is not a cal/non-cal topic. It was a good question.
     
  20. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    26,995
    Likes Received:
    1,021
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Which I was addressing until I was slandered.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
Loading...