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Bob Higby
06-11-05, 11:20 PM
Discuss Bob's latest blog entry.

Eileen
06-13-05, 08:14 PM
Out of this great post I am hoping that my question isn't strange or controversial (such as a common grace question would be). The following sentence made me think of the many around me, especially my own family who at this time do not confess Christ.

the Lord correspondingly hardened Pharoahís heart more rigidly against even a nominal repentance that would avoid temporal suffering.

A nominal repentance would also come from the Lord and we see that worked out continually in the lives of the unbeliever. Would you consider the nominal repentance............and the subsequent lessening of temporal suffering in the reprobate as God's mercy to them?

Mercy is so vast and when you have His mercy in election and have 'experienced' His mercy in ways that you never thought you would in this life you watch for it every day and you see what appears to be mercy to those who don't count it as such nor thank Him for it in any way, hence my thoughts and question..Perhaps because we don't know who is truly reprobate in this life we can't really determine if the Lord's dealings with them can be considered mercy? Your thoughts on that would be appreciated.

Eileen~

ray kikkert
06-14-05, 09:21 AM
Out of this great post I am hoping that my question isn't strange or controversial (such as a common grace question would be). The following sentence made me think of the many around me, especially my own family who at this time do not confess Christ.

the Lord correspondingly hardened Pharoahís heart more rigidly against even a nominal repentance that would avoid temporal suffering.

A nominal repentance would also come from the Lord and we see that worked out continually in the lives of the unbeliever. Would you consider the nominal repentance............and the subsequent lessening of temporal suffering in the reprobate as God's mercy to them?

Eileen~

Eileen , a nominal repentance is no repentance at all. It rather is the same hard hardenness. There is no mercy that can be advocated towards the reprobate from the Lord. God has mercy towards the elect alone. To advocate this would be to advocate common grace, love.... et al.

Consider the 2nd point of the 3 points advocated by the Christian Reformed Church:

Brief Answer to the Second Point (http://www.prca.org/articles/article_7.html#point2) of Common Grace:
The meaning of the Second Point:
The second point of 1924 does not teach that God holds the sinner in His power, so that he cannot do anything against the will and providence of God. This is plainly taught in the Bible and in the Belgic Confession, Art. 13.
But the second point teaches:
That there is a gracious operation of the Holy Spirit which is not regenerating on the heart and mind and will of the sinner.
That this operation commenced immediately after the fall and continues all through history.
That as a result there is in man a remnant of his original goodness, so that he is not as depraved as he would be without this operation.
That, because of this operation, the natural man is able to live a relatively good life in this life, and do good in the sphere of the world.


Objection to the Second Point:
The proof adduced by Synod for this point does not hold:
From Scripture the Synod quoted the following passages: Gen. 6:3 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Gen+6:3); Psa. 81:11-12 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Psa+81:11-12); Acts 7:42 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Acts+7:42); Rom. 1:24, 26, 28 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Rom+1:24,26,28); II Thess. 2:6-7 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=II+Thess+2:6-7); Concerning these passages we note:
Only one speaks of the Holy Spirit at all, namely, Gen. 6:3 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Gen+6:3). However, the text does not speak of a restraining by the Spirit, but of a striving. This took place through the Word of God by the prophets.
None of them speak of a restraint of sin.
Three of them speak of the very opposite of restraint, namely, of a delivering over into sin by the wrath of God. See: Psa. 81:11-12 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Psa+81:11-12); Rom. 1:24, 26, 28 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Rom+1:24,26,28); Acts 7:42 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Acts+7:42).
II Thess. 2:6-7 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=II+Thess+2:6-7) does not refer to the Holy Spirit as is plain from the text itself.

As to the proof adduced from the Confessions:
Belgic Conf., Art. 13, does not speak of an influence of the Holy Spirit, but of the Providential power of God; nor of an inward restraint of sin, but the restraint of sinners and devils.
Art. 36 does not speak of an influence of the Spirit but of the power of the police or magistrate.


The Second Point itself is contrary to Scripture and the Confessions:
To Scripture:
It postulates a remnant of good in natural man, which is contrary to all those passages of Holy Writ that speak of the depravity of the natural man. For these, see the discussion under Point III.
Scripture teaches directly the opposite from the main tenant of the Second Point when it declares that God delivers men over into ever greater corruption by His wrath. See: Rom. 1:24-28 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Rom+1:24-28); Psalm 51:5 (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?version=KJV&passage=Psalm+51:5).

To the Confessions: Canons III-IV:4 speaks of "remnants of natural light." These remnants are not due to an operation of Common Grace. Even with these remnants, however, the natural man is still wholly depraved and incapable of doing any good even in things natural and civil.

GraceAmbassador
06-14-05, 09:54 AM
That as a result there is in man a remnant of his original goodness, so that he is not as depraved as he would be without this operation.
That, because of this operation, the natural man is
That's where I think the whole think crumbles: "man had any ORIGINAL goodness".

To me that imply two things:

Man did not "die" with sin; either that or he died and his goodness did not. That's preposterous!
Man HAD goodness at all. That is very hard to prove I believe. God saw His creation as good and not MAN as good.
I prefer the original explanation of "Total depravity": Man is INTRINSICALLY EVIL and NOT INTENSELY EVIL.

Man has the ability to "make a good living" and NEVER to choose The Good or God.

Man can enjoy the natural benefits of creation, but that is far from any "gracious" operation of the Holy Spirit in His life. I have a few studies, not completed yet, that MOST if not ALL that the reprobate enjoys here on earth is:

a rub off of the benefits given to the Elect (Example: we're the salt, we're the light. They enjoy the benefits of us being the salt and light)
A temporary "take over" of the priviledges of the Elect since this are destined to enjoy them forever.
I know this discussion is NOT about common Grace, I just thought I should throw this in there.

Nominal Repentance Versus Real Repentance:

The Bible does not make a distinction such as the above. The Bible tells us of the "sorrow according to the world and sadness according to a godly manner". The context indicates that repentance and in fact talks about "two kinds of sorrow that work repentance". One working death, the other working Salvation. (I take it to mean the difference between REMORSE--where one looks upon what HE DID, and Biblical Repentance--where one looks upon what Jesus did!" (II Cor. 7: 9-10)

There would be no case in Pharaoh's heart of a "Godly sorrow" since God decreed its hardening. Pharaoh was sorry that he lost in his "dispute" with Moses and even declared God to be The God, but he could never have Godly repentance that works Salvation.

I am increasingly surprised that in some circles there is still a problem in receiving by faith what the Bible says about many things, including but not limited to, God hardening some people's heart. This difficulty causes discussions in Bible studies that are more a "re-writing" of biblical events than actually the clarification of them. I don't mean to say that the studies mentioned in this thread are any of that, but that does not mean that such a problem does not exist... Even in some reformed circles, that, to my awe, are very illiterate in Biblical teaching about anything, especially theology, or their own doctrinal foundations, I hear people say that "God saw that Pharaoh was going to disobey in the future thus He hardened Pharaoh's heart as a punishement". What can be more absurd???

I hope I understood Eileen's question and did not complicate the issue even more...

Milt

Brandan
06-14-05, 09:59 AM
I have talked to many so called supralapsarians, even one recently who claimed to believe only in the unitary (one) will of God, yet have the audacity to declare that the hardening of Pharaoah's heart was via God "removing His restraining hand" and "allowing Pharaoah" to continue on his wicked ways. This is pure infralapsarianism (free willism), and these people are NOT "high grace" supralapsarian calvinists!

Mickey
06-14-05, 11:10 AM
Brandon, I find these people either do not believe in Absolute Predestination or they simply like the idea but can't handle its implications. Also maybe they havenít seen its logical conclusions and that God's active hardening of the reprobate is one of them. Either way this venom still courses through the veins of most of the Reformed churches.



Eileen, I would not take Bob's statement to be true repentance. Rather a false repentance, which I believe is a form of judgment. God's disposition never at any point changes; this being said, all of God's actions towards the reprobate whether they appear to us to have some earthly benefit are still a form of judgment. God never shows mercy, love or grace to the reprobate period. I understand you didn't want this to be controversial like common grace but they are one in the same.

Mike

Eileen
06-14-05, 12:14 PM
ok, let me show you my complete ignorance as I thought of that sentence and what I thought it meant.

A nominal (not true, of coarse) repentance to me meant that the reprobate person (because we are talking reprobate here) has a semblance of fear of God which works itself out in their actions and avoids some of the sufferings in this life. temporal suffering.....all this in the Sovereignty of God, who turns the hearts of men to accomplish His will. Which in turn made me think of temporal mercy.

I perhaps have separated Grace and Mercy where I shouldn't have. I can tell you that in a learning process you learn one thing and you see that if affects something else that you have thought and hopefully that process will go on the remainder of my days. I will do a study of His mercy........

Psalm 145:9 "His tender mercies are over all His works"

Bob,
I have by the witness of the Holy Spirit always believed that the Lord Himself hardened Pharoah's heart......the scripture says so! I was in 'trouble' one time, kind of, because I believed that the Lord caused David (through Satan) to number the people too. Many in my own circle don't hold to the position that the Lord 'causes' such things and I believe because they are afraid that folks will throw away their responsibility. Thank you for your reinforcement of that truth that solidifies the Sovereignty of God.

I hope that I didn't take this off topic and I'm so sorry if I did. To me, my questions are so simple, aren't they? :rolleyes:

Eileen~

Bob Higby
06-14-05, 08:38 PM
A lot has been said since last night! Ray, I agree with you that only gospel repentance is significant in the eternal aspect of things.

Eileen:Would you consider the nominal repentance............and the subsequent lessening of temporal suffering in the reprobate as God's mercy to them?

Many have already commented on this. I don't want to confuse God's MERCY or GRACE with his general GOODNESS. There is such a thing as temporal 'repentance' (or whatever we want to call it) just as there is such a thing as temporal 'faith' (as the gospel of John states--many 'believed' in Christ yet wanted to kill him! Jn. 8:31). There is no absolute 'sanctified use' of Greek or Hebrew words in scripture that will cover EVERY anomaly or alternate use! We have to go with the major usage or 90%+ meaning.

I expected a lot more challenges to my post on God's sovereign hardening of hearts. I do not claim to have all the truth on this subject, by any means! But I'm absolutely convinced that the traditional 'party line' on this matter is not the truth. God does not merely 'allow' anything (including rebellion of hearts against him); otherwise he does not have sovereign control over every detail of history! :cool:

Brandan
06-14-05, 08:41 PM
I expected a lot more challenges to my post on God's sovereign hardening of hearts. Bob, it appears that mostly high grace predestinarians post here now. :cool:

GraceAmbassador
06-14-05, 08:50 PM
Dear Bob:

I cannot even begin to scratch the understanding as to why so called reformed folk still make use of the verb "allow" when anything refers to any event recorded in the Bible! We should "ban" the term "allow" from our vocabularies when it is spoken of God's decrees! "Allow" sometimes gives me the hillarious impression that someone is imagining a little "god" shrugging his shoulders, dropping his popcorn, spitting some lef over corn and saying "well, I guess it is all right if Pharaoh's disobeys me... I will "allow" it and then I am make things work on my favor... My comparison may sound irreverent, but NOT as irreverent as reducing God to an "allowing god" rather than glorifying Him as a Decreeing God!

Milt

lionovjudah
06-14-05, 10:40 PM
Does God infuse some sin or evil into the person, or does the hardening come from witholding His grace?

I find it ironic that Pharoas heart hardened more once the judgements/plagues relented.

lionovjudah
06-14-05, 11:02 PM
The Cause of reprobation does not lie in anything outside of God, not even in sin, but in Godís absolute sovereignty. If sin were the cause of reprobation, then God would be dependent upon manís actions in His decrees. Moreover, then all men would be reprobated, because all have sinned.

God is sovereign in election, but also in rejection. Both depend on nothing but Godís sovereign pleasure, and, being Godís decree they cannot be dependent upon some one or some thing outside of God. ďThe LORD hath made all things for Himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.Ē (Prov. 16:4)

Mickey
06-14-05, 11:21 PM
The Cause of reprobation does not lie in anything outside of God, not even in sin, but in Godís absolute sovereignty. If sin were the cause of reprobation, then God would be dependent upon manís actions in His decrees. Moreover, then all men would be reprobated, because all have sinned.

God is sovereign in election, but also in rejection. Both depend on nothing but Godís sovereign pleasure, and, being Godís decree they cannot be dependent upon some one or some thing outside of God. ďThe LORD hath made all things for Himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.Ē (Prov. 16:4)

Amen Joe, you Hyper-Calvinist!:cool:

Brandan
06-15-05, 04:59 AM
The Cause of reprobation does not lie in anything outside of God, not even in sin, but in Godís absolute sovereignty. If sin were the cause of reprobation, then God would be dependent upon manís actions in His decrees. Moreover, then all men would be reprobated, because all have sinned.

God is sovereign in election, but also in rejection. Both depend on nothing but Godís sovereign pleasure, and, being Godís decree they cannot be dependent upon some one or some thing outside of God. ďThe LORD hath made all things for Himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.Ē (Prov. 16:4)Yikes! I did not expect that from you, Joe! What you just wrote would get you kicked out of the vast majority of reformed churches.

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 07:01 AM
Yikes! I did not expect that from you, Joe! What you just wrote would get you kicked out of the vast majority of reformed churches.

Well, I still do not claim to have hast knowledge of His Decrees, but it makes sense. I have heard some argue that God has to view sin in order to reprobate, and I realized that makes no sense, because then we would all be reprobated!!!!! We sin because we are all sinners not because we are a reprobate.

SOme also conclude that election= holy life all the time, and reprobationg equals evil all the time. I do not agree with that either. God not only decrees the final state, but also the means to reach that state, all accomplished by His Soveriegn Pleasure.


I would like some to address my first question though :

Does God infuse some sin or evil into the person, or does the hardening come from witholding His grace? I noticed Pharaoh hardened more after the judgements relented.

Brandan
06-15-05, 07:43 AM
Does God infuse some sin or evil into the person, or does the hardening come from witholding His grace? What grace?

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 07:51 AM
I recently noticed something peculiar in the refernce to "the same lump" Paul uses. The words, "the same lump," points to men not created, not yet viewed as fallen creatures. If men were viewed here as fallen creatures, they could not be said to be made out of the same lump both to honor and dishonor. Rather, it would have been said that all were dishonorable and some were left in dishonor and some were made honorable. But this is not what the passage says. Paul tells us God made out of "the same lump" some to honor and others to dishonor. God created man with a purpose. God first fixed the end and then determined the means to create him. No wise potter would first make his pots and then decide for what use he made them. the vessels of wrath, He determined to create them, to fall in Adam, to leave them in their sins, to condemn them in their sins, and to punish them with wrath. This was designed to glorify His justice and longsuffering without the least blemish on His mercy and goodness.

I found this article that adfdresses my question. Any comments?


Jerome Zanchious
POSITION 5. --God is the creator of the wicked, but not of their wickedness; He is the author of their being, but not the infuser of their sin.

It is most certainly His will (for adorable and unsearchable reasons) to permit sin, but, with all possible reverence be it spoken, it should seem that He cannot, consistently with the purity of His nature, the glory of His attributes, and the truth of His declarations, be Himself the author of it. "Sin," says the apostle, "entered into the world by one man,'' meaning by Adam, consequently it was not introduced God Himself. Though without the permission of His will and the concurrence of His providence, its introduction had been impossible, yet is He not hereby the Author of sin so introduced. Luther observes: "It is a great degree of faith to believe that God is merciful and gracious, though He saves so few and condemns so many, and that He is strictly just, though, in consequence of His own will, He made us not exempt from liableness to condemnation." And: "Although God doth not make sin, nevertheless He ceases not to create and multiply individuals in the human nature, which, through the withholding of His Spirit, is corrupted by sin, just as a skillful artist may form curious statues out of bad materials. So, such as their nature is, such are men themselves; God forms them out of such a nature."



POSITION 6.--The condemnation of the reprobate is necessary and inevitable. Which we prove thus:

It is evident from Scripture that the reprobate shall be condemned. But nothing comes to pass (much less can the condemnation of a rational creature) but in consequence of the will and decree of God. Therefore the non-elect could not be condemned was it not the Divine pleasure and determination that they should, and if God wills and determines their condemnation, that condemnation is necessary and inevitable. By their sins they have made themselves guilty of death, and as it is not the will of God to pardon those sins and grant them repentance unto life, the punishment of such impenitent sinners is as unavoidable as it is just. It is our Lord's own declaration that "a corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit'' (Matt. vii.), or, in other words, that a depraved sinner cannot produce in himself those gracious habits, nor exert those gracious acts, without which no adult person can be saved. Consequently the reprobate must, as corrupt, fruitless trees (or fruitful in evil only), be "hewn down and cast into the fire" (Matt. iii.). This, therefore, serves as another argument in proof of the inevitability of their future punishment, which argument, in brief, amounts to this: they who are not saved from sin must unavoidably perish, but the reprobate are not saved from sin (for they have neither will nor power to save themselves, and God, though He certainly can, yet He certainly will not save them), therefore their perdition is unavoidable. Nor does it follow, from hence, that God forces the reprobate into sin, and thereby into misery, against their wills, but that, in consequence of their natural depravity (which it is not the divine pleasure to deliver them out of, neither is He bound to do it, nor are they themselves so much as desirous that He would), they are voluntarily biased and inclined to evil; nay, which is worse still, they hug and value their spiritual chains, and even greedily pursue the paths of sin, which lead to the chambers of death. Thus God does not (as we are slanderously reported to affirm) compel the wicked to sin, as the rider spurs forward an unwilling horse; God only says in effect that tremendous Word, "Let them alone" (Matt. xv. 14). He need but slacken the reins of providential restraint and withhold the influence of saving grace, and apostate man will too soon, and too surely, of his own accord, "fall by his iniquity"; he will presently be, spiritually speaking, a felo de se, and, without any other efficiency, lay violent hands on his own soul. So that though the condemnation of the reprobate is unavoidable, yet the necessity of it is so far from making them mere machines or involuntary agents, that it does not in the least interfere with the rational freedom of their wills, nor serve to render them less inexcusable.

POSITION 7.--The punishment of the non-elect was not the ultimate end of their creation, but the glory of God. It is frequently objected to us that, according to our view of predestination, "God makes some persons on purpose to damn them," but this we never advanced; nay, we utterly reject it as equally unworthy of God to do and of a rational being to suppose. The grand, principal end, proposed by God in His formation of all things, and of mankind in particular, was the manifestation and display of His own glorious attributes. His ultimate scope in the creation of the elect is to evidence and make known by their salvation the unsearchable riches of His power and wisdom, mercy and level and the creation of the non-elect is for the display of His justice, power, sovereignty, holiness and truth. So that nothing can be more certain than the declaration of the text we have frequently had occasion to cite, " The Lord hath made all things for Himself, even the wicked for the day of evil" (Prov. xvi.). On one hand, the "vessels of wrath are fitted for destruction," in order that God may "show His wrath and make His power known," and manifest the greatness of His patience and longsuffering (Rom. ix. 32). On the other hand, He afore prepared the elect to salvation, that on them He might demonstrate "the riches of His glory and mercy" (ver. 23). As, therefore, God Himself is the sole Author and efficient of all His own actions, so is He likewise the supreme end to which they lead and in which they terminate.

Besides, the creation and perdition of the ungodly answer another purpose (though a subordinate one) with regard to the elect themselves, who from the rejection of those learn (1) to admire the riches of the Divine love toward themselves, which planned and has accomplished the work of their salvation, while others, by nature on an equal level with them, are excluded from a participation of the same benefits. And such a view of the Lord's distinguishing mercy is (2) a most powerful motive to thankfulness that when they too might justly have been condemned with the world of the non-elect, they were marked out as heirs of the grace of life. (3) Hereby they are taught ardently to love their heavenly Father; (4) to trust in Him assuredly for a continued supply of grace while they are on earth. and for the accomplishment of His eternal decree and promise by their glorification in heaven; and (5) to live as becomes those who have received such unspeakable mercies from the hand of their God and Savior. So Bucer somewhere observes that the punishment of the reprobate "is useful to the elect, inasmuch as it influences them to a greater fear and abhorrence of sin, and to a firmer reliance on the goodness of God."


Here is the whole article

http://www.mbrem.com/calvinism/rprobate.htm



Joe

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 07:54 AM
What grace?

Restraining grace? I do not know how else to put it Brandan. Perhaps witholding His Spirit?

I am attempting to make a distinction between decreeing reprobation by nothing outside Himself, and since sin is not within God, I cannot conclude that He infuses sin or evil in a person.

I just posted an article by Zanchious that adresses this and I prematurely agree

Bob Higby
06-15-05, 10:36 AM
The propositions of Zanchius all go back to the Augustinian argument re: God is not the author of sin--which has become orthodoxy to most Protestants (and all Roman Catholics/Eastern).

God is the creator of the wicked, but not of their wickedness; He is the author of their being, but not the infuser of their sin.

If God is not the creator of wickedness, from whence did wickedness arise--was it a mysterious and unexplainable infection that developed out of good and order? God is the creator of all things good or bad. Even the inanimate universe functions according to both fixed law (good) and quantum physics (evil); God created both.

1. God creates AND SUSTAINS all things inanimate. He does not merely create, invest with laws, and withdraw. The exact shape of a tree, for instance, is unpredictable based merely on the laws that cause the tree to germinate and grow. The exact size, location, and direction of every branch and leaf occurs due to either random chance or a pre-determined plan; it has to be one or the other. If it is due to a pre-determined plan, God is present in sustaining power to make the tree grow exactly as he desires.

2. In the spiritual realm of the kingdom of light, God creates and sustains all things righteous. We all confess our dependence on the Lord to sustain our regenerate existence in the power of the Holy Spirit. The physical counterpart to this is that God creates each soul/body with life and is actively present to sustain life for all eternity beyond that creative act.

3. In the spiritual realm of the kingdom of darkness, God creates and sustains all things wicked. If this were not the case, the DETAILS of reprobate history cannot be pre-destined by God--the thoughts and acts of wicked creatures would only be 'generally' predictable. If God merely 'permits' wickeness but does not create or sustain it then the details of the dark side of history are not in his sovereign control.

Only the subjects of the kingdom of light partake of the divine nature (righteousness); in God is light and no darkness. The wickedness that he creates and sustains is not in his image but accomplishes his sovereign purposes nonetheless. :cool:

Mickey
06-15-05, 10:45 AM
Restraining grace? I do not know how else to put it Brandan. Perhaps witholding His Spirit?

Joe, because this is pretty much the same thing as Milt addressed I will repost what he said:


I cannot even begin to scratch the understanding as to why so called reformed folk still make use of the verb "allow" when anything refers to any event recorded in the Bible! We should "ban" the term "allow" from our vocabularies when it is spoken of God's decrees! "Allow" sometimes gives me the hillarious impression that someone is imagining a little "god" shrugging his shoulders, dropping his popcorn, spitting some lef over corn and saying "well, I guess it is all right if Pharaoh's disobeys me... I will "allow" it and then I am make things work on my favor... My comparison may sound irreverent, but NOT as irreverent as reducing God to an "allowing god" rather than glorifying Him as a Decreeing God!

The reason this relates is because when someone refers to withholding or restraining it implies there is an opposing impulse or force that would have it otherwise. Or it implies that God is only 'allowing' dead sinners to continue in their blind state, when really He predestined them to be His enemy forever. God's relationship to His creation is always active, never passive. He actively elects and actively damns. He actively creates and He actively destroys. He actively bestows grace and He actively curses. All things have been actively predestined.

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 10:51 AM
The propositions of Zanchius all go back to the Augustinian argument re: God is not the author of sin--which has become orthodoxy to most Protestants (and all Roman Catholics/Eastern).


I guess I am confused then Bob. How could God who is holy dispense sin from His nature? If there is no sin in Him to dispense.

I guess because this being new to me I am not comfortable with this explination. Earlier I stated that God Reprobates from nothing outside of Himself. Sin is outside of God, so how can it be both outside, yet from Him?

As an aside, I thought JZ did a commendable job regardcless where it comes from. Much better than many I have read.


Is there anyone who believes as you appear to Bob? This is not asked in sarcasm, I am just hoping that you are not alone in this opinion.



Joe

Mickey
06-15-05, 11:04 AM
Is there anyone who believes as you appear to Bob? This is not asked in sarcasm, I am just hoping that you are not alone in this opinion.

I am very much in agreement with Bob on this issue. He asked the question: If God didn't creat evil, from where did it come from? I suggest thinking about that. Did satan create it? Did Adam or Eve create it? Or did it just appear out of nowhere?

Those who assert, 'That makes God the author of sin!' are really judging God. For God to predestin sin as part of His plan does not make Him sinful. What makes Him sinful? Is there a Law above God that He is bound to obey? Can the creation point the fingure back at God and accuse Him of any wrong?

Some stuff to think about.

Mike

Angie
06-15-05, 11:11 AM
LIon,

God is holy-you are right. How can he dispense sin???? EVERYTHING God does is good. He is the law. He does not operate outside of himself in some universal law. For example, if he predestined to wipe out all of North America, then it is good. What law is he breaking? What bad thing is he doing? Who is to say anything God does is not good? HE is the law. The ultimate. Now, you sound like you are an infra, but who knows all of your thoughts. Scripture never seems to talk about God restraining/allowing, or being passive. Yet, it does talk about him creating all things. If you believe otherwise, then I must logically conclude that you do not believe God is sovereign. If he didn't want sin, he would not have created it. Hopefully you see what I am saying. I do not have the time to write as the others do, but maybe someone can put some scripture out to lion. see ya:rolleyes:

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 11:34 AM
Restraining grace? I do not know how else to put it Brandan. Perhaps witholding His Spirit?

Joe, because this is pretty much the same thing as Milt addressed I will repost what he said:



The reason this relates is because when someone refers to withholding or restraining it implies there is an opposing impulse or force that would have it otherwise. Or it implies that God is only 'allowing' dead sinners to continue in their blind state, when really He predestined them to be His enemy forever. God's relationship to His creation is always active, never passive. He actively elects and actively damns. He actively creates and He actively destroys. He actively bestows grace and He actively curses. All things have been actively predestined.


Mike. How come I see a distinction here? For instance, ALL by nature are sinners correct? But as I mentioned before sin is not the reason God reprobates because we sin and He does not sin for us. So therefore He reprobates and Elects because of His Sovereignty.

FOr instance, the regenerate have a constant fight between the flesh and the Spirit. These are 2 opposing forces. God will not fight against Himself. So the fleshly desires that fight against His spirit are ours by nature, not because He infuses them into us. How could this be?

God would never be divided upon Himself. Man is either Reprobate or Elect. Once The decree was made, there is nothing that can prevent the final outcome. So why would God have to constantly actively continue to reprobate someone? Am I making any sense here?

When it is said that God has left them to their own lustful desires, does that actually mean God infuses these lustful desires? SInce they are reprobate, what else needs to be done actively?

I do not see my distinction as bare permission as if God is not aware or not in Control.

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 11:43 AM
Is there anyone who believes as you appear to Bob? This is not asked in sarcasm, I am just hoping that you are not alone in this opinion.

I am very much in agreement with Bob on this issue. He asked the question: If God didn't creat evil, from where did it come from? I suggest thinking about that. Did satan create it? Did Adam or Eve create it? Or did it just appear out of nowhere?

Those who assert, 'That makes God the author of sin!' are really judging God. For God to predestin sin as part of His plan does not make Him sinful. What makes Him sinful? Is there a Law above God that He is bound to obey? Can the creation point the fingure back at God and accuse Him of any wrong?

Some stuff to think about.

Mike

Thank you Mike. I should have clarified my question in regards to 6000 years of historical Witness. Not in this forum. After a brief search on google, I have yet to find anyone that claims that God actually infuses evil and sin into people. whether reprobate or elect.

Your approach resembles entrapment. Cop pulls me over, puts some coke in my pocket, and I get busted. God is just in reprobation because He is under no obligation to save anyone. And His juidgements are based on His nature, and His nature is one that is perfect and Holy.But I will definately pray and search earnestly along this new opinion.

I believe creating evil and infusing evil into man are distinct. If man is sinful by nature, what else does He need to do to make them "more sinful?"


Joe

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 11:49 AM
LIon,

God is holy-you are right. How can he dispense sin???? EVERYTHING God does is good. He is the law. He does not operate outside of himself in some universal law. For example, if he predestined to wipe out all of North America, then it is good. What law is he breaking? What bad thing is he doing? Who is to say anything God does is not good? HE is the law. The ultimate. Now, you sound like you are an infra, but who knows all of your thoughts. Scripture never seems to talk about God restraining/allowing, or being passive. Yet, it does talk about him creating all things. If you believe otherwise, then I must logically conclude that you do not believe God is sovereign. If he didn't want sin, he would not have created it. Hopefully you see what I am saying. I do not have the time to write as the others do, but maybe someone can put some scripture out to lion. see ya:rolleyes:

Angela:

I am not questioning Gods Sovereignty at all. And I know EVERYTHING He does is good, but He is Always Just and perfectly Holy. I do not see how restraining His Spirit = being passive. Perhaos some definaitions are needed.

When I see passive, I think of an impotent sterile person with no control. That is not what I mean when I speak of ACTIVELY restraining or Witholding His spirit. IT all comes from God and nothing from man. His actions, decrees flow from Him alone. This assertion that He actively infuses evil and sin into people seems close to Ians proposal of our sins infused to Christ.

I will definately give this more thought and I ask for you patience...

Ivor Thomas
06-15-05, 11:54 AM
Joe God created a Horse! Doe's that make God a Horse?. No the thing's, all thing's Are created by Him for His purpose, see Colossians ch;1. The thing's God creates does not in any way Alter God in character or in anyway He remains Holy. Ivor Thomas...:cool:

Brandan
06-15-05, 12:01 PM
God does not create people and just "let them be". He guides all of their actions. Creation is MUCH MORE than a one time event. Creation is currently taking place right now as you read this message. God is continually creating - He is maintaining His creation by providence, and there is never a moment in time when He takes His hands off of any of His creations. In Him we live, breathe, and move. He is omnipresent and continually directing all the thoughts and motives of His creatures.

There are many scriptures which teach that God causes men to sin. Look at these:

Lam 3:37-38, (KJV), Who is he that saith, and it cometh to pass, when the Lord commandeth it not? (38) Out of the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil and good?

Job 2:10, (KJV), But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.


2 Sam 24:1, (KJV), And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.

1 Chr 21:1, (KJV), And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.

Ps 105:25, (KJV), He turned their heart to hate his people, to deal subtilly with his servants.

Prov 16:1, (KJV), The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.

Prov 20:24, (KJV), Man's goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?

Jer 10:23, (KJV), O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

Isa 10:5, (KJV), O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation.

Ps 17:13-14, (KJV), Arise, O LORD, disappoint him, cast him down: deliver my soul from the wicked, which is thy sword: (14) From men which are thy hand, O LORD, from men of the world, which have their portion in this life, and whose belly thou fillest with thy hid treasure: they are full of children, and leave the rest of their substance to their babes.

Acts 17:28, (KJV), For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

Prov 21:1, (KJV), The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

2 Sam 16:5-12, (KJV), And when king David came to Bahurim, behold, thence came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera: he came forth, and cursed still as he came. (6) And he cast stones at David, and at all the servants of king David: and all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand and on his left. (7) And thus said Shimei when he cursed, Come out, come out, thou bloody man, and thou man of Belial: (8) The LORD hath returned upon thee all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose stead thou hast reigned; and the LORD hath delivered the kingdom into the hand of Absalom thy son: and, behold, thou art taken in thy mischief, because thou art a bloody man. (9) Then said Abishai the son of Zeruiah unto the king, Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? let me go over, I pray thee, and take off his head. (10) And the king said, What have I to do with you, ye sons of Zeruiah? so let him curse, because the LORD hath said unto him, Curse David. Who shall then say, Wherefore hast thou done so? (11) And David said to Abishai, and to all his servants, Behold, my son, which came forth of my bowels, seeketh my life: how much more now may this Benjamite do it? let him alone, and let him curse; for the LORD hath bidden him. (12) It may be that the LORD will look on mine affliction, and that the LORD will requite me good for his cursing this day.

2 Chr 18:19-22, (KJV), And the LORD said, Who shall entice Ahab king of Israel, that he may go up and fall at Ramothgilead? And one spake saying after this manner, and another saying after that manner. (20) Then there came out a spirit, and stood before the LORD, and said, I will entice him. And the LORD said unto him, Wherewith? (21) And he said, I will go out, and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And the Lord said, Thou shalt entice him, and thou shalt also prevail: go out, and do even so. (22) Now therefore, behold, the LORD hath put a lying spirit in the mouth of these thy prophets, and the LORD hath spoken evil against thee.

2 Thess 2:9-12, (KJV), Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, (10) And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (11) And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: (12) That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Acts 2:22-23, (KJV), Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: (23) Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:

Acts 4:25-28, (KJV), Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? (26) The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. (27) For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, (28) For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.

Isa 63:17, (KJV), O LORD, why hast thou made us to err from thy ways, and hardened our heart from thy fear? Return for thy servants' sake, the tribes of thine inheritance.

Isa 26:12-13, (KJV), LORD, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us. (13) O LORD our God, other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee only will we make mention of thy name.

Ps 90:1-3, (KJV), Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations. (2) Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. (3) Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men.

All the events of men - all the doings of man - every single breath - every single thought - every single action are ALL PREDETERMINED BY GOD FOR HIS PLEASURE. These things do not occur because God ultimately "allows" them to happen, or because he ultimately "permits" them to happen, or because He ultimately "removes his Hand" - but because He ultimately determined these things to occur because it HIS PLEASURE. All the sin, and evil in this world are because He was pleased to make it such. He was pleased to submit this present creation to suffering to bring about a much better heavens and new earth. I myself think it is a glorious plan!

Now do I believe God is the approver of sin? Of course not. But that does not mean He is not the ultimate cause of all things. He is not the guilty party. He is the Creator - the Potter - and He can do whatever He desires and who are we to dare suggest that this would make Him the author of sin? Phhht, we are just puny men who are bound by our mere faculties with no authority whatsoever.

Brandan

Mickey
06-15-05, 12:02 PM
Joe, you have some parts right and some parts you are fuzzy on. I am confident that you will get this worked out though. It just takes a little bit to get all these propositions lined up to where you can see which ones don't fit and which ones do. We have a lot of scripture to sort through so it takes time. God willing this will all be put into perspective. There is more I need to learn as well so I don't claim to have it all together.:)

Mike

Bob Higby
06-15-05, 12:26 PM
A lot of fine observations from all of you. Brandan, you sure put those scriptures together quickly!

LJ: I guess I am confused then Bob. How could God who is holy dispense sin from His nature? If there is no sin in Him to dispense.

This is exactly what I confessed that God does not do: dispense sin from His nature. The creation is distinct from the creator. The fact that God creates a frog does not in any way indicate that 'frogness' is dispensed from God's nature. It simply indicates that God purposed to add such a creature (which does not reflect his own nature) to his universe.

I guess because this being new to me I am not comfortable with this explination. Earlier I stated that God Reprobates from nothing outside of Himself. Sin is outside of God, so how can it be both outside, yet from Him?

Only elect souls bear the image and character of God; i.e., the stamp of his own nature. The rest of creation--whether animate, inanimate, or evil is designed by God but entirely separate from him. Even elect angels and men are entirely separate from God's non-communicable attributes of Deity. :cool:

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 12:27 PM
God does not create people and just "let them be". He guides all of their actions. Creation is MUCH MORE than a one time event. Creation is currently taking place right now as you read this message. God is continually creating - He is maintaining His creation by providence, and there is never a moment in time when He takes His hands off of any of His creations. In Him we live, breathe, and move. He is omnipresent and continually directing all the thoughts and motives of His creatures.


I agree with this Brandan. I will never adhere to any thought of an open God. Please do not make my limited understanding result in that. I guess my concern is this. If we look at the historical witness we see instances of a subtle shift to go higher and higher. Augie did not go far enough, So Gottshalck comes a longer and steps up the ladder a few rings, still this is not enough, lambert, Calvin, Zanchious come along and go a little further, Gill, Philpot, Gadsby huntington go even further, but again this is not enough, Now some of you are espounsing a "higher, farther" step of not only God creating evil, but infusing this evil and infusing sin into man. THe line between Predestination / Fatalism is becoming blurred in my minute understanding. I must ask what is the difference between what this teaching espouses and a hard deterministic fatalistic understanding?

I know the few examples you posted relate to this and I am nto denying them, but is it an absolute unilateral operation, or is it for specific purposes?

Perhaps 200 years from now people will say, those Higbyites, Mikeites, Ivorites, Kraftites did not go far enough.

I also ask if some of my points could be addressed because the only way I will understand this is if I pray upon answers related to my questions.

ps: My 2 comments about reprobation were applauded, but since I have further questions, please to not consider me an "ite" of some sort!!!!!!!

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 12:32 PM
A lot of fine observations from all of you. Brandan, you sure put those scriptures together quickly!

LJ: I guess I am confused then Bob. How could God who is holy dispense sin from His nature? If there is no sin in Him to dispense.

This is exactly what I confessed that God does not do: dispense sin from His nature. The creation is distinct from the creator. The fact that God creates a frog does not in any way indicate that 'frogness' is dispensed from God's nature. It simply indicates that God purposed to add such a creature (which does not reflect his own nature) to his universe.

I guess because this being new to me I am not comfortable with this explination. Earlier I stated that God Reprobates from nothing outside of Himself. Sin is outside of God, so how can it be both outside, yet from Him?

Only elect souls bear the image and character of God; i.e., the stamp of his own nature. The rest of creation--whether animate, inanimate, or evil is designed by God but entirely separate from him. Even elect angels and men are entirely separate from God's non-communicable attributes of Deity. :cool:


Thanx Bob.

I thought all were created with the 'image of God" whatever the 100 diffeent thoughts of that are. I agree the creation is distinct from the creator. But does not the creation flow from the nature of the creator? How can God seperate Himself from anything He creates?


And Does the opposite side of the coin ie: election mean that God infuses good and Holiness into us? I do not believe that is the case. Does He act differently in His decree for the elect and reprobate?

Mickey
06-15-05, 12:43 PM
Fatalism does not involve God. It just says all things are destined to happen by some impersonal force. Absolute Predestination says that God has predestined EVERYTHING. Anything you can think of God predestined to happen by (now this is important) the cousel of His will to the praise of His glorious grace.

Actually those who say that God looked into the future to see who would believe in Him and then called them His elect--whether they know it or not are only left with a fatalistic force that determined their choices that God was able peer in on if God wasn't the one to determine them. For a choice to be known it must be determined.

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 12:51 PM
Fatalism does not involve God. It just says all things are destined to happen by some impersonal force. Absolute Predestination says that God has predestined EVERYTHING. Anything you can think of God predestined to happen by (now this is important) the cousel of His will to the praise of His glorious grace.

Actually those who say that God looked into the future to see who would believe in Him and then called them His elect--whether they know it or not are only left with a fatalistic force that determined their choices that God was able peer in on if God wasn't the one to determine them. For a choice to be known it must be determined.


I agree with this Mike. THere is no predestination based on forseen events done by man.

I guess those who pepetrate the evil acts will never question God anyway because of their blindness.. That is my fear. WHat is to stop me from "blaming God" for my sinful actions because I am aware of this teaching now? As I read the Word, not one istance that brandan quoted shows these men saying, "God made me do it, dont blame me" There is something there that I am unable to grasp at this time.


And I am not the one who Paul is speaking to in Romans 9. "Who are you to replyest against God" Because I can not find one instance of that happening in the writ.

I will also ask again, is there any historical teachings of this found anywhere? And if not, how much weight should it carry in Christiandom if 4 people adhere to it?

melted
06-15-05, 12:56 PM
If this understanding is taken to it's logical conclusion, we are left with no such thing as man's accountability though. At least I see no way for this truth to be present.

I have possibly a more immature view currently. God created man for His own glory. Man is not God, and therefore is not righteous. The fact that man is not God is sufficient to explain man's wickedness. It does not need to be said that God infuses the wickedness into man. This understand keeps man as the bad guy. God created the bad guy, but He doesn't make the bad guy bad. He doesn't have to, since the bad guy is bad by nature (that of a non-God nature).

I hope this makes sense to someone other than myself.

I believe that saying God actively causes man's sin takes the horridness away from sin. It uses God's sovereign purpose to mask the disgusting wretchedness of man, who is such by his own filthiness (his own lack of righteousness).

Man being inherently evil makes a situation in which Jesus Christ's alien righteousness is intrinsicly required, rather than having to simulate an environment in which Christ's righteousess has a purpose. Man becomes truly depraved on his own, rather than by God's hand.

Proverbs 16:9 illustrates how this does not create a problem with God's absolute sovereignty in all things, including the actions of the reprobate: "The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps".

-Kyle

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 01:24 PM
Let me attempt this approach in explaining my understanding.

THis appraoch makes God have a hand in mans sins. Which would be against His nature. Since God cannot do an unholy action, this does not represent God IMHO. The Lord is pleased to determine it, but He cannot have a hand in it can he?

I will also try this approach. God is light, He is not darkness. Man by nature is all darkness, it is absurd to say that the Light causes the darkness. The light revreals the darkeness but cannot infuse or cause it can it?


When I say, ďGod permits sin,Ē I must clarify this. God does not allow the sinner to decide, free from His command. If He did, God would be merely an observer of a contest whose outcome is never certain. To sin or not to sin would ultimately lie in manís power of decision, and God could only react accordingly.

Godís witholding is always a positive action, not helpless or frustrated inaction. However, positive providence does not make God the author of sin. Every act of sin is committed by a man whose life God sustains (Acts 17:28). Ananias and Sapphira were being sustained by God while they lied to Him (Acts 5:4). God restrained Abimelech from sinning against Sarah (Gen. 20:6), but He did not restrain David from sinning against Bathsheba and Uriah (II Sam. 11). Adam and many others were unrestrained, but God did restrain Laban from harming Jacob (Gen. 31:7) and prevented Balaam from cursing Israel (Num. 23).

God suffers (allows) sin to be committed. However, suffering is not mere permission of sin. God not only allows men to walk in their own ways, He gives them up to uncleanness and vile affection and gives them over to a reprobate mind. He sends them strong delusions that they might believe a lie (II Thess. 2:11). God punishes sin with sin.

I found this article that expresses my premature understanding.
God is not responsible for manís sin (Is. 45:7). He did not originate moral evil. Darkness did not proceed from God who is light, nor the evil of sin from God who is holy. Two contrasts appear in Isaiah 45:7óďI form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.Ē Light is contrasted with darkness, and peace is contrasted with evil. Darkness is the privation of light, and the evil of punishment is the privation of peace.

God forms light and creates darkness. He forms the light of nature and rational understanding. Every man who comes into the world possesses this light and understanding (John 1:9). Darkness is also Godís creature. Natural darkness results from the absence of the sun. Deprivation of divine light causes spiritual darkness.

The Lord makes peace and creates evil (Is. 45:7). He now makes peace among His saints. When Jesus Christ comes as King of kings and Lord of lords, He will make universal peace. The Lord announced through Isaiah that He would remove the peace the Israelites were enjoying and send them the evil of punishment for their sins.

The evil that God creates is the evil of punishment for sin, not the evil of sin itself. Sin is not found among Godís creatures in Genesis 1. Sin did not begin with Godís original creation. The Lord does not infuse any evil into men. Rather, He subjects depraved men to various providential dealings; He allows sin and overrules it for the good of His people.

Sin began among the angelic host with Lucifer; and with mankind, it began in Adam. God purposed the fall of both. If He had not, neither could have fallen. The Lord also purposed to prepare redemption for His elect through the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. Although evil hands were associated with the preparation of that redemptive work, those wicked hands were only instruments that God used to fulfill His purpose. God made Christís soul an offering for sin: ďYet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his handĒ (Is. 53:10).

We must distinguish between the words purpose and author. God purposed sin; otherwise, it could not exist. According to Godís determinate counsel and foreknowledge, the sins of wicked men nailed the Lord Jesus Christ to the cross (Acts 2:23). God purposed to order events so that evil should come to pass to fulfill His eternal purpose. Nevertheless, He hates evil. To say that God is the author of sinóthat is, the agent, actor, or doer of a wicked thingówould be blasphemy. Sin had no actual existence before it was committed by creatures whom God pronounced good after His act of creating them. Therefore, sinís beginning cannot be attributed to God.

Godís foreknowledge of sin does not make Him the author of sin; anticipated sin and actual sin are entirely different. Just as divine election or foreordination does not cause oneís actual redemption, so foreknowledge of sinís occurrence does not cause that sin.

Sin became a reality only as Godís creatures perverted His will. It has no original substance in itself. Sin has no thesis. It has only antithesis. Since sin came by Godís creatures, it is a secondary and not a primary consideration.

People seek to excuse their own sin by asking, ďWhy did God make Adam capable of falling?Ē They refuse to admit a personal sinful condition. For that reason, considering the origin of sin is not as innocent as it may appear.

God created man capable of falling because He could make him in no other condition. God cannot create God. Whatever He creates must be inferior to Himself. Man was created upright (Eccl. 7:29), but he was created with two principles: inferior and superior. The inferior principle was related to manís flesh, and the superior principle was related to his fellowship with God. When Adam fell, he lost the superior principle and retained the inferior (which had become corrupted). Adam could no longer fellowship with God; so he fled to the wilderness, seeking to hide himself from God. The inferior principle became the reigning principle in the lives of Adam and his descendants. When the superior principle was forfeited through sin, man was alienated from the life of God. Every person since Adam comes into the world dead in trespasses and sins.


But I will continue to earnestly study bobs, brandans and mikes thoughts. But in my premature reading of it, It appears to leave satan and his temptings out of the puicture and this war that Paul says we all face between the flesh and Spirit divides God and has Him fighting against Himself.



Joe

lionovjudah
06-15-05, 01:49 PM
This is a great thread. I would like to thank all invloved thus far. I only pray for clarity on the issue at hand and rely on the Spirit and Word of God.

Thank you all for your charity..
\
Joe

Mickey
06-15-05, 02:50 PM
I guess those who pepetrate the evil acts will never question God anyway because of their blindness.. That is my fear. WHat is to stop me from "blaming God" for my sinful actions because I am aware of this teaching now?

The fact that you know you are still accountable. The rebel will blame God, and continue in there rebelion. The child of God is humbled and praises God for His mercy and grace.

how much weight should it carry in Christiandom if 4 people adhere to it?

This is something you will have to discide for yourself.

Bob Higby
06-16-05, 12:50 AM
To say that Isa. 45:7 is contrasting SPIRITUAL light vs. mere PHYSICAL darkness--this does not need comment; it violates all Hebrew parallelism.

Joe, you have not answered the earlier question--if God does not create and sustain evil, who does? The solution you have provided is an appeal to paradox.

I will also ask again, is there any historical teachings of this found anywhere?

The Teacher of Righteousness referred to in the Dead Sea Scrolls, who was the archenemy of the Pharisees. The Pharisees followed the free-will philosophy of Plato and killed all who were predestinarians (until the invasion of the Romans stopped them from doing so any more).

And if not, how much weight should it carry in Christiandom if 4 people adhere to it?

You are claiming that we are the only ones, well, . . . I won't get into others that I know who don't post on this forum.

Augustine followed Plotinus, the neo-Platonist. His philosophy is very explicit on a belief in predestination but a denial that God created evil. This is the philosophy followed by all who follow Augustine on this question. :cool:

lionovjudah
06-16-05, 08:31 AM
To say that Isa. 45:7 is contrasting SPIRITUAL light vs. mere PHYSICAL darkness--this does not need comment; it violates all Hebrew parallelism.

Joe, you have not answered the earlier question--if God does not create and sustain evil, who does? The solution you have provided is an appeal to paradox.

I will also ask again, is there any historical teachings of this found anywhere?

The Teacher of Righteousness referred to in the Dead Sea Scrolls, who was the archenemy of the Pharisees. The Pharisees followed the free-will philosophy of Plato and killed all who were predestinarians (until the invasion of the Romans stopped them from doing so any more).

And if not, how much weight should it carry in Christiandom if 4 people adhere to it?

You are claiming that we are the only ones, well, . . . I won't get into others that I know who don't post on this forum.

Augustine followed Plotinus, the neo-Platonist. His philosophy is very explicit on a belief in predestination but a denial that God created evil. This is the philosophy followed by all who follow Augustine on this question. :cool:





Bob, THis topic has me extremely attentive. SO perhaps we can appraoch it in smaller bites, without general sweepings of some fictional mile wide broom. I ask too many questions and make too many comments at one time, and the ones I need answers on or responses to get glossed over and I am answered with a question.

1) As I mentioned earlier, The Cause of reprobation does not lie in anything outside of God, not even in sin, but in Godís absolute sovereignty. If sin were the cause of reprobation, then God would be dependent upon manís actions in His decrees. Moreover, then all men would be reprobated, because all have sinned.

THis has been agreed with by some, of which I am not patting myself on the back, because I am not looking for handshakes from men.


2) Bob, you state that evil is designed by God, but seperate from Him. I do not understand this. He is the source of all, so how can He create anything from outside of Himself? This on the surface almost points to exactly what He was speaking to Cyrus about in the Isaiah Passage. God was speaking to refute the Magian religion of the persians. This was a form of Gnosticism which taught there were two supreme beings, an evil one, represented by darkness and a good one represented by light.
Isaiah tells Cyrus that these two opposite exhibitions are actually the operation of the Almighty God. That The verse was written to address something the Persians understood very well, war. The word 'evil' used originally meant the evil and calamities associated with war.


3) GOd did create evil. the word "evil" that is in question here, comes from the Hebrew word "ra" (Strong's #7451). The following are some English words used to translate it: adversity, affliction, bad, calamity, displease, distress, evil, misery. Still other words used to translate it are grief, harm, hurt, noisome, sore, sorrow, trouble, vex, wickedness, wretchedness, and wrong. The word "ra" comes from a primary root "raa," which properly means "to spoil" (literally by breaking to pieces). It figuratively means "TO make (or be) good for nothing, i.e. bad (Strong's #7489). A Hebrew dictionary says this word means, "to smash, crush, or break in pieces" (TWOT). Is this correct thus far? IT is NEVER defined as SIN.

I also believe to translate evil as sin is incorrect, and this is where I believe you are saying they are the same. If not I apologise for my conclusion. Understanding the difference that exists between "sin" and "evil" is very important. Scriptures never imply, state, nor hint that God created sin. And we become presumptious to conclude this. Bob, If you are saying that God created evil in regards to the above definitions, I have no issue, if you are equating it with sin, that is my contention.

John defined sin in his letter to the church. He said, Sin is lawlessness" (1Jo. 3:4). Since God is the lawgiver, He is not under any law, but is above His own Law. Therefore, when God does what would be sin in man, it is no longer sin. Look at the example found in the book of Deuteronomy, where God says He "kills" (De. 32:39). When man kills it is a grievous sin. However when the institution of law kills it is no longer sin, but it is lawful. That is, when God kills it is far from being sin. God is not a man and to judge Him by human standards is impossible.

When man does evil he normally sins, yet God, who creates, plans, and causes evil remains righteous. Evil, by itself, has absolutely no moral bias or slant like we usually associate with it. If evil accomplishes the Lord's purpose it is no longer immoral. God Himself still calls it evil, but claims He is the real source of the power behind it (Isa. 10:5). No evil created by God can have the least taint of moral depravity. This is because He always directs it toward the reconciliation of His creation. Again, this leads me to question of what you think is the reason for evil from the hand of God? It appears to me, and again I apologize if this is not the case, that you are saying that God has some pleasure in this, when Scripture never hints at this. In fact it says the exact opposite. "For He afflicts, yet He has compassion according to the abundance of His kindness" (Lam. 3:32).

It is very clear that Scripture nowhere shows God as directly doing anything evil but rather as bringing about evil deeds through the willing actions of moral creatures. Scripture never blames God for evil or shows God as taking pleasure in evil and Scripture never excuses human beings for the wrong they do. However we understand God's relationship to evil, we must never come to the point where we think that we are not responsible for the evil that we do, or that God takes pleasure in evil or is to be blamed for it. Such a conclusion is clearly contrary to Scripture.


4) You ask where does evil come from, The answer is spoken by Christ in MArk 7. "There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him...For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders...pride, foolishness: all these evil things come from within and defile the man" The idea that there is something sinful outside of us which enters us and causes us to sin is incompatible with the plain teaching of Jesus here. From within, out of the heart of man, come all these evil things. So since all are born with the propensity to sin, a rotten heart from the beginning, why would God have to "do something extra" to infuse something that already exists?


5) You mention the teacher of Righteousness and the DSS. I honestly have no comment other than I did not know these were inspired. And your answer above almost sounds like the Jewish Mafia conspired to kill all who adhered to this veiw. They were going to "rat" on the pharisees, and needed to be silinced!!!! Perhaps a new conspiracy theory movie may be concocted..:D

Brandan
06-16-05, 09:16 AM
1) As I mentioned earlier, The Cause of reprobation does not lie in anything outside of God, not even in sin, but in Godís absolute sovereignty. If sin were the cause of reprobation, then God would be dependent upon manís actions in His decrees. Moreover, then all men would be reprobated, because all have sinned.But sin is a SECONDARY cause of reprobation - hardening of hearts. Ultimately reprobation is found in God's purpose - but He uses evil and sin to bring about the destruction of men ordained. The question for you Joe is does God predetermine some events, or does He predetermine ALL events? Are all the sins of men predetermined by God? If not, what stuff is predetermined - only the initial natures?



2) Bob, you state that evil is designed by God, but seperate from Him. I do not understand this. He is the source of all, so how can He create anything from outside of Himself? God's creation and use of sin is not a reflection on His character. In God's ultimate purpose, sin is a GOOD THING as He uses it to bring about glorious results!


GOd did create evil. the word "evil" that is in question here, comes from the Hebrew word "ra" (Strong's #7451). The following are some English words used to translate it: adversity, affliction, bad, calamity, displease, distress, evil, misery. Still other words used to translate it are grief, harm, hurt, noisome, sore, sorrow, trouble, vex, wickedness, wretchedness, and wrong. The word "ra" comes from a primary root "raa," which properly means "to spoil" (literally by breaking to pieces). It figuratively means "TO make (or be) good for nothing, i.e. bad (Strong's #7489). A Hebrew dictionary says this word means, "to smash, crush, or break in pieces" (TWOT). Is this correct thus far? IT is NEVER defined as SIN.I cannot think of anything more evil than sin. :) Did God create ALL evil - or just the principle?


I also believe to translate evil as sin is incorrectExactly - sin is an act that is evil or has the characteristic of evilness. I believe God predertimed (ie. ultimately caused) all evil acts (sin).


John defined sin in his letter to the church. He said, Sin is lawlessness" (1Jo. 3:4). Since God is the lawgiver, He is not under any law, but is above His own Law. Therefore, when God does what would be sin in man, it is no longer sin. Look at the example found in the book of Deuteronomy, where God says He "kills" (De. 32:39). When man kills it is a grievous sin. However when the institution of law kills it is no longer sin, but it is lawful. That is, when God kills it is far from being sin. God is not a man and to judge Him by human standards is impossible.Agreed. But what about when men transgress God's law which is ultimately found in God's predetermination? Did God cause men to slay Christ? What this an evil deed they planned - was it not also sinful? The Bible says that it pleased the Lord to bruise Him. Yet it was a very wicked thing.


It appears to me, and again I apologize if this is not the case, that you are saying that God has some pleasure in this, when Scripture never hints at this.Wrong again - God is pleased with all His works - even the evil deeds He brings about by men. Take a look at the Scriptures :)

Colossians 1:16, (KJV) For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

Rev 4:11, (KJV), Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

Isa 46:9-11, (KJV), Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, (10) Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure: (11) Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.

Prov 16:4, (KJV), The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

Ps 115:3, (KJV), But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.

Ps 135:6, (KJV), Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.

Dan 4:35, (KJV), And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?

Lam 3:37-38, (KJV), Who is he that saith, and it cometh to pass, when the Lord commandeth it not? (38) Out of the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil and good?

Isa 53:10, (KJV), Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him ; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

Revelation 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

Anything that happens in this world is ultimately found in God's pleasure. This involves all the transgressions that men commit against Him. God is PLEASED with everything as everything is going according to His Glorious Plan. Do you think God is not pleased with His creation? Do you think that God did not want evil and sin to be a part of this world? Did God not want men to transgress His law? If so, what stopped Him from getting what He truly wanted and what truly pleased Him?


However we understand God's relationship to evil, we must never come to the point where we think that we are not responsible for the evil that we do, Of course men will be held accountable for their crimes against God. How could God be held accountable to Himself? Such a notion that God could be the one tried in court is ludicrous as He is the judge.

God is pleased in all things. However He is not the approver of all things.


You ask where does evil come from, The answer is spoken by Christ in MArk 7. "There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him...For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders...pride, foolishness: all these evil things come from within and defile the man"Agreed, evil spring forth from the devices of men. No disagreement there at all. However, God is ultimately causing all events to occur - including the thoughts of His creatures - would you not agree? This then makes Him the ultimate cause of sin - however, not the CHARGEABLE cause.

Here are a few quotes from some past authors on the topic...


Why God is Not ... the Chargeable Cause of Sin.

If God has decreed all that comes to pass, and if God, by his most holy, wise and powerful providence, governs all his creatures and all their actions in order to accomplish his own holy ends, how is one to understand all this so that God is not made the author of sin and man is left responsible?

If we are to be biblical, it is important at the outset to affirm with no equivocation that God has ordained whatever comes to pass. As the Westminster Confession of Faith declares, God is the sole ultimate "First Cause" of all things (V/ii). With Calvin we must confess that God's will "is, and rightly ought to be, the cause of all things that are." But God is neither the author of sin nor the chargeable cause of sin. And we must insist upon this for three reasons. The first is simply this: The Bible teaches that "God is light; in him there is no darkness at all" (1 John 1:5) and that he tempts no one to sin (James 1:13). The second reason is this: While he certainly decreed all things, God decreed that all things would come to pass according to the nature of "second causes," either (1) necessarily, as in the case of planets moving in their orbits, (2) freely, that is, voluntarily, with no violence being done to the will of the creature, or (3) contingently, that is, with due regard to the contingencies of future events, as in his informing David what Saul and the citizens of Keilah would do to him if Daivd remained in the city of Keilah (1 Sam. 23:9-13). Therfore, whatever sinfulness ensues proceeds only from men and angels and not from God. (pg. 372)

That anything - good or evil - occurs in God's universe finds its account . . . in His positive ordering and active concurrence; while the moral quality of the deed, considered in itself, is rooted in the moral character of the subordinate agent, acting in the circumsatnces and under the motives operative in each instance . . . . Thus all things find their unity in His eternal plan; and not their unity merely, but their justification as well; even the evil, though retaining its quality as evil and hateful to the holy God, and certain to be dealt with as hateful, yet does not occur apart from His provision or against His will, but appears in the world which He has made only as the instrument by which He works for the highter good. (Benjan B. Warfield, "Predestination," in Biblical and Theological Studies, pp 283-84.)

Here is the westminster confession of faith on the topic
Chapter V.IIAlthough, in relation to the foreknowledge and decree of God, the first Cause, all things come to pass immutably, and infallibly; yet, by the same providence, he ordereth them to fall out, according to the nature of second causes, either necessarily, freely, or contingently.

Here is John Calvin
God's will is, and rightly ought to be, the cause of all things that are. For if it has any cause, something must precede it, to which it is, as it were, bound; this is unlawful to imagine. For God's will is so much the highest rule of righteosness that whatever he wills, by the very fact that he wills it, must be considered righteous. When, therefore, one asks why God has so done, we must reply: because he has willed it. But if you proceed further to ask why he so willed, you are seeking something greater and higher than God's will, which cannot be found. (Calvin, Institutes, III.xxiii.2)

lionovjudah
06-16-05, 09:55 AM
But sin is a SECONDARY cause of reprobation - hardening of hearts. Ultimately reprobation is found in God's purpose - but He uses evil and sin to bring about the destruction of men ordained. The question for you Joe is does God predetermine some events, or does He predetermine ALL events? Are all the sins of men predetermined by God? If not, what stuff is predetermined - only the initial natures?

I do not see in Scripture, it may be there, but I have not found where God uses evil and sin to bring about the destruction of men ordained. I see Scripture saying He uses it to bring about the Good for His elect. I will research more though. Prematurely, I do nto believe God uses evil just for the save of evil and it ends there.

God has predetermined ALL events Brandan. Which result from our nature. I am still confused why God "needs" to continuosly infuse evil and sin into already evil and sinful people.


Joe.



God's creation and use of sin is not a reflection on His character. In God's ultimate purpose, sin is a GOOD THING as He uses it to bring about glorious results!

I agree


I cannot think of anything more evil than sin. :) Did God create ALL evil - or just the principle?

In what I reasearched in regards to the hebrew word, and I may be wrong, God created evil in what I defined in my previous post


Agreed. But what about when men transgress God's law which is ultimately found in God's predetermination? Did God cause men to slay Christ? What this an evil deed they planned - was it not also sinful? The Bible says that it pleased the Lord to bruise Him. Yet it was a very wicked thing.

I agree here Brandan


Wrong again - God is pleased with all His works - even the evil deeds He brings about by men. Take a look at the Scriptures :)


TO state that all is created by God, then conclude he has pleasure in evil is a grand leap, when scripture says He has NO PLEASURE in wickedness. He cannot behold iniquity, He has no pleasure in the souls that sins, He hates wprkers of iniquity... I will reference later the exact scriptures. Perhaps a definition of pleasure is in store. I do not believe the intention is a "happy, joyous pleasure"




Do you think God is not pleased with His creation? Do you think that God did not want evil and sin to be a part of this world? Did God not want men to transgress His law? If so, what stopped Him from getting what He truly wanted and what truly pleased Him?

God is well pleased. I would be a fool to answer yes to these questions...hahahaha There Has to be an ultimate purpose or we are left with a sterile impotent God. Ultimately all will work in God's good purposes to bring glory to him and good to his people. Yet we must realize that in punishing evil in those who are not redeemed (such as Pharaoh, the Canaanites, and the Babylonians), God is also glorified through the demonstration of his justice, holiness, and power. We can never blame God for temptation nor think that he will approve of us if we give in to it. We are to resist evil and always blame ourselves or others who tempt us, but we must never blame God. Even a verse such as Isaiah 45:7, which speaks of God "creating evil," does not say that God himself does evil, but should be understood to mean that God ordained that evil would come about through the willing choices of his creatures. We should never say about an evil event, "God willed it and therefore it is good," because we must recognize that some things that God's will of decree has planned are not in themselves good, and should not receive our approval, just as they do not receive God's approval.

there is nothing in Scripture that would indicate that some things are outside God's providential control. So yes ALL events are sourced from Him.

Reformed Presby
06-16-05, 10:10 AM
From Jerome Zanchius' "Absolute Predestination"


Some men were, from all eternity, not only negatively excepted from a participation of Christ and His salvation, but positively ordained to continue in their natural blindness, hardness of heart, etc., and that the just judgment of God. (See Exod. ix.; 1 Sam. ii. 25; 2 Sam. xvii. 14; Isa. vi. 9-11; 2 Thess. ii. 11, 12.) Nor can these places of Scripture, with many others of like import, be understood of an involuntary permission on the part of God, as if God barely suffered it to be so, quasi invitus, as it were by constraint, and against His will, for He permits nothing which He did not resolve and determine to permit. His permission is a positive, determinate act of His will, as Augustine, Luther and Bucer justly observe. Therefore, if it be the will of God in time to permit such and such men to continue in their natural state of ignorance and corruption, the natural consequence of which is their falling into such and such sins (observe God does not force them into sin, their actual disobedience being only the consequence of their not having that grace which God is not obliged to grant them)-I say, if it be the will of God thus to leave them in time (and we must deny demonstration itself, even known absolute matter of fact, if we deny that some are so left), then it must have been the Divine intention from all eternity so to leave them, since, as we have already had occasion to observe, no new will can possibly arise in the mind of God. We see that evil men actually are suffered to go on adding sin to sin, and if it be not inconsistent with the sacred attributes actually to permit this, it could not possibly be inconsistent with them to decree that permission before the foundations of the world were laid.
Thus God efficaciously permitted (having so decreed) the Jews to be, in effect, the crucifiers of Christ, and Judas to betray Him (Acts iv. 27, 28; Matt. xxvi. 23, 24). Hence we find St. Augustine* speaking thus: "Judas was chosen, but it was to do a most execrable deed, that thereby the death of Christ, and the adorable work of redemption by Him, might be accomplished. When therefore we hear our Lord say, 'Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?' we must understand it thus, that the eleven were chosen in mercy, but Judas in judgment; they were chosen to partake of Christ's kingdom; he was chosen and pitched upon to betray Him and be the means of shedding His blood."

The non-elect were predestinated, not only to continue in final impenitency, sin and unbelief, but were likewise, for such their sins, righteously appointed to infernal death hereafter.


This position is also self-evident for it is certain that in the day of universal judgment all the human race will not be admitted into glory, but some of them transmitted to the place of torment. Now, God does and will do nothing but in consequence of His own decree (Psalm cxxxv. 6; Isa. xlvi. 11; Eph. i. 9, 11); therefore the condemnation of the unrighteous was decreed of God, and if decreed by Him, decreed from everlasting, for all His decrees are eternal. Besides, if God purposed to leave those persons under the guilt and the power of sin, their condemnation must of itself necessarily follow, since without justification and sanctification (neither of which blessings are in the power of man) none can enter heaven (John xiii. 8; Heb. xii. 14). Therefore, if God determined within Himself thus to leave some in their sins (and it is but too evident that this is really the case), He must also have determined within Himself to punish them for those sins (final guilt and final punishment being correlatives which necessarily infer each other), but God did determine both to leave and to punish the non-elect, therefore there was a reprobation of some from eternity. Thus, "Go, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matt. xxv.); for Satan and all his messengers, emissaries and imitators, whether apostate spirits or apostate men. Now, if penal fire was, in decree from everlasting, prepared for them, they, by all the laws of argument in the world, must have been in the counsel of God prepared, i.e., designed for that fire, which is the point I undertook to prove. Hence we read "of vessels of wrath fitted to destruction, put together, made up, formed or fashioned, for perdition" (Rom. ix.), who are and can be no other than the reprobate. To multiply Scriptures on this head would be almost endless; for a sample, consult Prov. xvi. 4; 1 Peter ii. 8; 2 Peter ii. 12; Jude 4; Rev. xiii. 8.

The condemnation of the reprobate is necessary and inevitable. Which we prove thus. It is evident from Scripture that the reprobate shall be condemned. But nothing comes to pass (much less can the condemnation of a rational creature) but in consequence of the will and decree of God. Therefore the non-elect could not be condemned was it not the Divine pleasure and determination that they should, and if God wills and determines their condemnation, that condemnation is necessary and inevitable. By their sins they have made themselves guilty of death, and as it is not the will of God to pardon those sins and grant them repentance unto life, the punishment of such impenitent sinners is as unavoidable as it is just. It is our Lord's own declaration that "a corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit" (Matt. vii.), or, in other words, that a depraved sinner cannot produce in himself those gracious habits, nor exert those gracious acts, without which no adult person can be saved. Consequently the reprobate must, as corrupt, fruitless trees (or fruitful in evil only), be "hewn down and cast into the fire" (Matt. iii.). This, therefore, serves as another argument in proof of the inevitability of their future punishment, which argument, in brief, amounts to this: they who are not saved from sin must unavoidably perish, but the reprobate are not saved from sin (for they have neither will nor power to save themselves, and God, though He certainly can, yet He certainly will not save them), therefore their perdition is unavoidable. Nor does it follow, from hence, that God forces the reprobate into sin, and thereby into misery, against their wills, but that, in consequence of their natural depravity (which it is not the Divine pleasure to deliver them out of, neither is He bound to do it, nor are they themselves so much as desirous that He would), they are voluntarily biassed and inclined to evil; nay, which is worse still, they hug and value their spiritual chains, and even greedily pursue the paths of sin, which lead to the chambers of death. Thus God does not (as we are slanderously reported to affirm) compel the wicked to sin, as the rider spurs forward an unwilling horse; God only says in effect that tremendous word, "Let them alone" (Matt. xv. 14). He need but slacken the reins of providential restraint and withhold the influence of saving grace, and apostate man will too soon, and too surely, of his own accord, "fall by his iniquity" ; he will presently be, spiritually speaking, a felo de se, and, without any other efficiency, lay violent hands on his own soul. So that though the condemnation of the reprobate is unavoidable, yet the necessity of it is so far from making them mere machines or involuntary agents, that it does not in the least interfere with the rational freedom of their wills, nor serve to render them less inexcusable.

Brandan
06-16-05, 01:30 PM
Look Joe - this is all very simple - it's not complicated. I think you are making it complicated out of fear of making God "sinful". I understand your position. I do not believe God is sinful - very much unlike the position that was stated by Mr. Potts which claims the Lord Jesus Christ became sinful.

God, before the foundation of the world decreed everything. That is He decreed He would be glorified in the salvation of men and the damnation of the wicked. He determined to be glorified in the salvation of His chosen people by submitting them to sin and evil and saving them by the meritorious work of Jesus Christ. All the little details that make up this decree are included. This includes each and every individual sin. God does not take His hands off of any of His creatures and "allow" them to go whichever way they please. No, every single detail of their actions were thoughtfully planned out in eternity. This includes all of their thoughts, actions, and all the other things that influence them. Every proton, neutron, and electron in man is under His direct control, and there isn't a single moment in time in which He relinquishes this control. He is not "infusing" sin into their thoughts (as if they had free agency) as you asked earlier. He is simply directing them as His creation to do with as He pleases according to His decree. It really can't be any more simple than that.

Got it? If not, let me restate again.

God PREDESTINED ALL THINGS. EVERYTHING. Not just some events. Not just some thoughts. Not just some deeds. ALL THINGS. There is not a particle of dust that moves in the wind, a single thought by any man, or a movement by any living creature that was not predestinated by God before the foundation of the world.

This doctrine is so crucial - it is amazing to me how many people reject it and can't comprehend it. It is very simple! It's not hard to comprehend that the Lord is absolutely sovereign. I can't begin to imagine a God that is less than absolutely sovereign - my whole world would fall apart!

Imagine for a moment that God didn't want men to sin. Oh horror of horrors! Sin was just committed by men and God couldn't do anything to stop it even though He didn't want it! Imagine things happening against God's single unitary will of purpose and pleasure. God does not desire after things that He has decreed not to have. Oh no sir, He gets exactly what He wants / desires. He has everything that pleases Him.

God must be the predetermining cause of all things. Can you imagine if He wasn't? Shudder the thought!

lionovjudah
06-16-05, 02:19 PM
Look Joe - this is all very simple - it's not complicated. I think you are making it complicated out of fear of making God "sinful". I understand your position. I do not believe God is sinful - very much unlike the position that was stated by Mr. Potts which claims the Lord Jesus Christ became sinful.

THis is the end conclusion that I thought the reasoning was going. Or not stating it plainly.


He is not "infusing" sin into their thoughts (as if they had free agency) as you asked earlier. He is simply directing them as His creation to do with as He pleases according to His decree. It really can't be any more simple than that.

Got it? If not, let me restate again.

Well I notice frustration in your voice!!!!! ANyway, may I please paste what I posted earlier . When I say, ďGod permits sin,Ē I must clarify this. God does not allow the sinner to decide, free from His command. If He did, God would be merely an observer of a contest whose outcome is never certain. To sin or not to sin would ultimately lie in manís power of decision, and God could only react accordingly. If you notice, I never said Gods "permission" is without His decree or command and He sits idley by as a balcony sterile observer.

And again I stated this: God suffers (allows) sin to be committed. However, suffering is not mere permission of sin. God not only allows men to walk in their own ways, He gives them up to uncleanness and vile affection and gives them over to a reprobate mind. He sends them strong delusions that they might believe a lie (II Thess. 2:11). God punishes sin with sin.

I also said this : Even a verse such as Isaiah 45:7, which speaks of God "creating evil," does not say that God himself does evil, but should be understood to mean that God ordained that evil would come about through the willing choices of his creatures. We should never say about an evil event, "God willed it and therefore it is good," because we must recognize that some things that God's will of decree has planned are not in themselves good, and should not receive our approval, just as they do not receive God's approval.







This doctrine is so crucial - it is amazing to me how many people reject it and can't comprehend it. It is very simple! It's not hard to comprehend that the Lord is absolutely sovereign. I can't begin to imagine a God that is less than absolutely sovereign - my whole world would fall apart!


BK, I honestly reviewed my posts and cannot find anywhere I have rejected the Doctrine of Gods Immutable Decrees and Providence. Neither can I find where I have hinted that God is nto absolutley sovereign.

Again I previously stated this: The evil that God creates is the evil of punishment for sin, not the evil of sin itself. Sin is not found among Godís creatures in Genesis 1. Sin did not begin with Godís original creation. The Lord does not infuse any evil into men. Rather, He subjects depraved men to various providential dealings; He allows sin and overrules it for the good of His people.

Sin began among the angelic host with Lucifer; and with mankind, it began in Adam. God purposed the fall of both. If He had not, neither could have fallen.

We must distinguish between the words purpose and author. God purposed sin; otherwise, it could not exist. According to Godís determinate counsel and foreknowledge, the sins of wicked men nailed the Lord Jesus Christ to the cross (Acts 2:23). God purposed to order events so that evil should come to pass to fulfill His eternal purpose. Nevertheless, He hates evil. To say that God is the author of sinóthat is, the agent, actor, or doer of a wicked thingówould be blasphemy. Sin had no actual existence before it was committed by creatures whom God pronounced good after His act of creating them. Therefore, sinís manifestation cannot be attributed to God.

It was no mistake for God to create Satan, for he did exactly what God had planned he should do. If God did not intend Satan to sin, but he did it on his own initiative, then God missed the mark! And this would Make Satan a creator, which is blasphemous IMHO..

The Major distinction I am attempting to make is between creation and commiting the act. God Created Satan, adam, Eve, therefore all posterity to sin, but His hands are not the perpetrating ones. The creation willfully sins and does evil. NOt by it being infused into them or sustained as Bod suggests. Again what "Divine Help does fallen creatures need to continue sinning?

Sin has an essential, though transient, part in God's purpose. God made the ultimate preparation for it before it came. The Lamb was slain from the disruption of the world. Creation may reveal some aspects of God's power and wisdom, but His love can be displayed only where sin has sown the seeds of hate. There can be no Saviour apart from sin. There can be no reconciliation apart from enmity.

Brandan
06-16-05, 02:26 PM
The Major distinction I am attempting to make is between creation and commiting the act. God Created Satan, adam, Eve, therefore all posterity to sin, but His hands are not the perpetrating ones. The creation willfully sins and does evil. NOt by it being infused into them or sustained as Bod suggests. Again what "Divine Help does fallen creatures need to continue sinning? Ok, now we're getting somewhere... What if God were to stop sustaining men? Would they sin? Nope. God's sustaining power when they sin is critical.

lionovjudah
06-16-05, 02:39 PM
Ok, now we're getting somewhere... What if God were to stop sustaining men? Would they sin? Nope. God's sustaining power when they sin is critical.

Sustaining in what aspect BRandan? What are you claiming He is sustaining in everyone?

My definition is that God does not have to continuously sustain the sinful nature in us, we are born with it, Even regenerate people have it. So what sustaining does God do?

Brandan
06-16-05, 02:45 PM
Sustaining in what aspect BRandan? What are you claiming He is sustaining in everyone?

My definition is that God does not have to continuously sustain the sinful nature in us, we are born with it, Even regenerate people have it. So what sustaining does God do?He sustains all His creatures. He directs all their thoughts. He directs all their steps. He is actively involved with keeping all of His creation in existence.

Mickey
06-16-05, 04:22 PM
My definition is that God does not have to continuously sustain the sinful nature in us, we are born with it, Even regenerate people have it. So what sustaining does God do?

It sounds to me like you believe that God got the Dominos going so to speak and leaves it up to the Dominos to keep going.

Imagin a pool table with all of the balls placed in certain parts of the table. Someone puts the q-ball on the dot and banks it of the wall then off another and so on. All of the places of the other balls was predetermined but what is to stop the q-ball from hitting the other balls. You have to be involved in every single movement on that pool table otherwise balls would be nailing each other and flyin off the table--it would be a mess.

God has to cause every action in every part of His creation in order for there to be order.

I gotta go.

Mickey
06-16-05, 04:35 PM
Here is a quik anatomy lesson:

There is two parts to our Nervous System: The Somatic (Voluntary Control) and the Autonomic (Involuntary Control). The Somatic controls things like typing and reading--things w have to think about and act. The Autonomic controls things like breathing, digestion, heart beat and Body temp.

Joe would you say that God controls the Autonomic fuctions our our Nervous System or do you think that He has created them to function apart from His control. If you think he does then how do you explain a heart attack which causes someone to die. Did God decide to take over or did the person die apart from God's control?

Bob Higby
06-16-05, 09:47 PM
The hearts of men are likened a river that God turns in whatever direction he pleases; that is scripture. This includes both righteousness and wickedness. We may not understand how he does it, but the fact that he controls both means that every thought and action involved (proceeding from each) is planned by God. This means that the EXACT FORM of the wicked acts is pre-determined, the river has a definite course.

It makes no sense to say that wickedness cannot be called wicked if it accomplishes God's positive purpose. Where does the Bible ever reason like that?

We have gone through it all before with the Hebrew word RA; it is compound and represents all brokenness of being--whether spiritual or physical. The Latin distinctions between 'spiritual', 'moral', and 'physical' evil do not exist in the Hebrew thought. Likewise with SHALOM, it is wholeness of being in all of these aspects (no compartmentalizing of material 'peace' and separating it from spiritual 'redemption').

To confess that sin emanates from the hearts of men does not explain its origin or where the 'flesh' came from originally. How did a heart that God created become infected with wickedness; that is the issue. :cool:

Ian Potts
06-17-05, 02:28 AM
Look Joe - this is all very simple - it's not complicated. I think you are making it complicated out of fear of making God "sinful". I understand your position. I do not believe God is sinful - very much unlike the position that was stated by Mr. Potts which claims the Lord Jesus Christ became sinful.

Just want to make a short comment as a parenphesis to this particular discussion, seeing as my name has been mentioned...

For anyone unfamiliar to this, Brandan is referring to that which was mentioned in the 'sin and righteousness' thread (http://www.predestinarian.net/showthread.php?t=2176&page=1&pp=15).

In that thread I state that 2 Cor. 5:21 which says that Christ was "made sin" for us refers to God making Christ to be sin in an exchange of us with Him at the cross, an exchange of our state with His state. ie. He was made sin for three hours in order for sin to be judged and taken away under the wrath of God. That is substitutionary atonement.

What I have never stated is that the Lord Jesus Christ was ever sinful before the cross, or after it, or indeed sinful of His own volition - He never sinned Himself. I DO NOT believe that God is sinful either! But what the Bible does teach is that Christ was 'made sin' By God taking our state of sin and making the Son to be it in substitution for three hours in the darkness (symbolic of the fact that the SON of righteousness was 'made sin' - the light of the sun was taken away for three hours), in order to TAKE SIN AWAY, to blot it out, to condemn it in the flesh.

I only mention this to clarify the matter in case some are led to think that I hold to some kind of 'Irvingite' view of Christ always having a sinful nature. That view was expounded by Edward Irving, a pentecostal preacher in the 1800s who held that Christ in His manhood was just like us, He had a sinful nature, but He never sinned because of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. I completely reject such gross error which I have never held to and which is vastly different to what I believe (despite BillTwisse comparing the two in the other thread...). What I believe is SUBSTITUTIONARY ATONEMENT, a THOROUGH EXCHANGE of places in which Christ was MADE sin by the Father in order to take sin away that we might become the righteousness of God in Him 2 Cor. 5:21.

"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:" Romans 8:3

In Grace,
Ian

P.S. I would not have mentioned this matter again if it were not for the fact that Brandan referred to me and gave an inferrence of what I believe which being so brief is likely to give a very wrong impression.

Brandan
06-17-05, 08:28 AM
Dear Sweet Brother Ian,

I did not misrepresent your teaching at all. You believe Christ was sinful on the cross, do you not? Yes or no. There is no in between here. You cannot have it only in his "human nature" as opposed to His "deity nature". Either He was sinful for a short period of time or not.

I think you are being logically inconsistent and will eventually be led away from this strange teaching that our precious and SPOTLESS Lord who CHANGES NOT was made sinful. I think it will prove difficult for you to maintain the distinction.

But, anyway, I'm now sorry that I mentioned your name in this thread. Please forgive me as it really had no relevance to the topic at hand.

I do however maintain hope that you will consider the implications of such a teaching. I for one cannot even begin to think of my Lord as sinful - even for a moment in time. Oh what horriffic thoughts this brings to me.

Your Brother,
Brandan

Ivor Thomas
06-17-05, 08:52 AM
When they took the body of Jesus down from the cross the Bible refer's to the body has It, When Jesus [died] for three day's, Jesus has the Person in His Divine nature being God did not die, But Jesus human nature with body died, It was in His body in is Human nature that He took our sin down into death. Gone forever was our sin took away by the spottless Lamb of God, just needed to clarify what i believe, while it was being mentioned. Ivor Thomas

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 09:27 AM
When they took the body of Jesus down from the cross the Bible refer's to the body has It, When Jesus [died] for three day's, Jesus has the Person in His Divine nature being God did not die, But Jesus human nature with body died, It was in His body in is Human nature that He took our sin down into death. Gone forever was our sin took away by the spottless Lamb of God, just needed to clarify what i believe, while it was being mentioned. Ivor Thomas


I really wish we had an "expert" on the hypostatic union in this forum. THis appears to be where this is heading. Perhaps the thread should be resurrected Brandan. But we must not digress Bobs blog here.

Bob Higby
06-17-05, 09:40 AM
For the record:

1. In my mind, it is irrelevant whether one states that Christ contracted human sin in his incarnation (like Irving, the Catholic Apostolic Church, & the traditional Seventh-day Adventists) OR for only 3 hours at the cross. The point under consideration is whether Christ contracted human sin at all. If at all, it matters not for how long (at least to many of us).

2. In my mind, it is also irrelevant to compare the 'manner' of contraction--whether it is the infection of the 'flesh' (sin-nature) or some other mysterious infection that cannot be defined in specific terms of soul-experience. All of these views deny, of course, that Jesus actually sinned by volition.

Naturally, there are fine distinctions in the different views regarding this. I just can't tolerate the thought of any of it (Christ contracting human sin).

Ian has said nothing in SPECIFIC TERMS describing the reality of Christ's atonement for sin that I disagree with--to me everything he has described as impartation is really substution, imputation, representation, etc. I just can't accept the confession in MYSTICAL TERMS that Christ contracted sin within his person--to me that is not what 'made sin' is referring to any more than 'this is my body' refers to the physical presence of Christ in the supper. In fact, I believe the implications of saying this are dangerous and can easily mislead souls into error--whether the proponent realizes it or not.

Just to clarify, --Bob :cool:

Ian Potts
06-17-05, 09:56 AM
Dear Sweet Brother Ian,

Brandan,

Thanks for calling me Brother again. :) I thought things were a bit cool when I read 'Mr. Potts' in your other post...



I did not misrepresent your teaching at all.

I replied simply because the BREVITY of your statement could give some a wrong impression ie. to those who hadn't read the other thread.



I think you are being logically inconsistent and will eventually be led away from this strange teaching that our precious and SPOTLESS Lord who CHANGES NOT was made sinful. I think it will prove difficult for you to maintain the distinction.

As Ivor pointed out, our precious and spotless Lord who 'changes not' actually DIED on the cross in His human nature did He not? He lay in the grave until the morning on which He rose again FROM THE DEAD did He not?

Was it His human nature which died? Or his divine nature? Certainly not His divine! Then it must have been His human nature. Which had been made sin at the cross, which had suffered the outpouring of God's wrath against that sin in unspeakable suffering until sin was blotted out.

Is it strange to speak of Christ having died in His human nature, yet not His divine? Then why so strange to say that His human nature was MADE SIN, but not His divine? That His divine PERSON remained untainted by sin? Please Brandan, have a bit more of a think through these things before you criticise my 'inconsistent' 'logic'.

Is it a terrible thing to speak of the eternal Son of God actually having DIED on the cross? Of couse not. Was that a change in One who 'changes not'? Yes, but not to His divinity, but to His human nature. Is it terrible to say that He died? No. Then neither is the cause - sin and the judgement of God against it, His being made sin in substitutionary atonement for us. In the 'Great Exchange' by which He was made sin, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin;" Romans 5:19
...
"That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 5:21



I do however maintain hope that you will consider the implications of such a teaching. I for one cannot even begin to think of my Lord as sinful - even for a moment in time. Oh what horriffic thoughts this brings to me.

Your Brother,
Brandan
I believe the Lord led me into this teaching of substitutionary atonement which is at the heart of the Gospel, and by which Christ took our sin away that we might become the righteousness of God in Him, and I trust that the Lord will keep me in it. But I thank you for your concern and may I reciprocate it by assuring you of my desire that one day you too will come to see these things as precious truths to the glory of God.

Your comments about not being able to think of the Lord in this way remind me of comments made by others against certain truths.

Some reject the teaching of Hell. Their 'God of love' wouldn't send anyone to hell. It is too much for them to bear, so they close their eyes to what is taught in scripture about it.

Some reject the teaching of particular redemption. Their God of love would have Christ die for ALL MEN so that all may be saved if THEY but will. They can't bear to think of a God who would choose to save some and not others. But they close their eyes to clear scripture regarding the truth of election and particular redemption.

I don't mention those things to be provocative but just to make the point that our 'view of God' must not be conditioned by human reasoning about what we can bear to imagine Him as. The love of God is NOTHING when divorced from His JUSTICE. The God of the Bible saves whom He will, not all men. And He judges others fairly and sends them to hell. That is not 'loving enough' for most people but is the truth of the scriptures and the elect rejoice in it.

You can't bear the idea of Christ actually being made sin for us. I understand your thinking but have to say that it is influenced by human reason and human comprehension of Christ and what He is like or could suffer. The Bible says otherwise. It says that He WAS MADE SIN that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. That is the only way that could happen for God WILL judge sin and He did so in the Saviour. He blotted it out. Likewise the Bible says that Christ ACTUALLY DIED as a man. Not every one can bear that thought really but it is so obvious historically that they can't really contradict it, hence they reason about whether Christ was truly perfect or whether He was truly man. Yet He was divine and He did have a perfect human nature, and He DID die. Why? Because He was made sin and suffered God's wrath against sin in His manhood.

Christ never sinned, He was MADE sin by the Father. He exchanged places with His people. Their state with His, that they might become the righteousness of God in Him.

I don't find that a truth which is hard to bear. It is a truth which makes me fall down flat on my face and Worship! That Christ should LOVE HIS ELECT so much that He was willing to be humbled even to the death of the cross, even to bearing their sins in His own body on the tree, even to being made sin for them. What agonies He must have endured, what suffering, how abhorrent sin was to Him, yet He LOVED US so much that He endured that. He didn't sin, but He was made it to take it away. And take it away He did - it is NO MORE. GONE FOREVER, the elect are JUSTIFIED by Christ, and are become the righteousness of God in Him. Praise His Name.

That is love, the love of Christ, which passes knowledge. Oh may God increase our faith to see just what Christ DID and SUFFERED for His people because of the great love wherewith He loved us.

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." Galatians 2:20

"For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;

And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God." Ephesians 3:14-19

(I won't labour this topic, but Brandan brought the point up and I felt his reply should be replied to. Thanks again Brandan for your kindness in referring to me again as Brother.)

In Grace,
Ian :)

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 10:00 AM
Bob, Brandan, Mike, Thanks to you I did not get hardly any sleep last night. This topoic has motivated me tremendously and I thank you.

I am extremely busy at work today, so I will just respond quicly in some premature thoughts.

My immediate discomfort in the opinion here is one that mirrors a sort of Zoroastrian dualism with a Jewish Flavor. However, whereas in the Zoroastrian texts, God begets the two spirits, in the Jewish texts, God creates both spirits in each creature and is transcendent above both light and darkness. Hence, God is ultimately responsible for the evil that exists in the world.

This doctrine being espoused here is fundamentally different from the other origins of evil because it ultimately attributes evil to God. Evil is not ascribed to the rebellion of Satan and the Angels, nor to Adam's disobedience , nor to the evil inclination of man , but is conceived of as being instituted by God as part of creation. Which goes against the mass majority of teaching on the subject from antiquity.

That said, one can also not dismiss a novel idea as being 'wrong" because of its newness, but must also be extremely cautious to immediately join hands in agreement invalidating the Historical witness of the Church. We also cannot condemn Ian for what some consider his "dangerous" and "unusual" understanding, when perhaps views such as this would require the same barometer.

Brandan
06-17-05, 10:13 AM
That said, one can also not dismiss a novel idea as being 'wrong" because of its newness, but must also be extremely cautious to immediately join hands in agreement invalidating the Historical witness of the Church. This view is not new at all Joe. Ever hear of the Absolute Predestinarians? Ever hear of the Absoluter Primitive Baptists? Ever hear of Gordon Clark and John Robbins? All of these men affirm the absolute predestination of all things including ALL sins.

Bob Higby
06-17-05, 10:28 AM
My immediate discomfort in the opinion here is one that mirrors a sort of Zoroastrian dualism with a Jewish Flavor. However, whereas in the Zoroastrian texts, God begets the two spirits, in the Jewish texts, God creates both spirits in each creature and is transcendent above both light and darkness.

Zoroastrian dualism, which is in harmony with Manichean philosophy, teaches that good and evil are separate and co-eternal principles; the 'god' of one is completely distinct from the 'god' of the other. The teachings of Marcion tried to synthesize Manichean dualism with Christianity.

Isa. 45:7, in my view, is a refutation of such dualism in describing the creation of both kingdoms to be from the one infinite & eternal God.

The philosophies of both Manicheanism and Platonism are corruptions of man and stand in total contrast to the ancient Hebrew understanding. Traditional Christianity rejects Manicheanism but embraces a form of Platonism taught by Augustine (who abandoned his earlier Manichean beliefs to embrace neo-Platonism). Why does it matter how many stand in the Augustinian tradition of interpretation of these things? I don't see how it does, any more than it mattered to the Reformers how many 'heavy-weights' stood in the tradition of false soteriology.

In the historical order, the NEW teacing is Platonism, the OLD and ancient teaching is the Hebrew scriptures and those who remained faithful to it. Until the scrolls were discovered, which writings had been destroyed by human authorities everywhere else, this ancient testimony was unknown. Yet many of us came to our beliefs from scripture alone and only later discovered that this other testimony existed.

Believe me, I'm not defending the sectarian junk in the scrolls taught by later followers (in various splinter groups) claiming the Teacher as their authority. I'm only defending the original philosophy of the Teacher himself (approx. 100 B.C.E.) in the Thanksgiving Psalms and the portion of the Sectarian Charter attributed to him. :cool:

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 11:06 AM
This view is not new at all Joe. Ever hear of the Absolute Predestinarians? Ever hear of the Absoluter Primitive Baptists? Ever hear of Gordon Clark and John Robbins? All of these men affirm the absolute predestination of all things including ALL sins.


Brandan? DO these people subscribe to this teaching of God being the source of evil and sin in creation? And infusing this into man? OR creating it and detmining it without secondary causes?

Again, I am not disputing predestination. Or approaching this with a diestic tone that God creates, then becomes an absentee landord.

I believe that God has ORDAINED all that comes to pass. What I do not see is that God created Satan, nor man with the sin nature and then actively sustains this sin nature.

Scripture says Lucifer, or whatever you wan to call him was created flawless, the mornign star. Man was created upright, yet mortal.

THis historical witness of the church has believed that evil is either ascribed to the rebellion of Satan and the Angels,or to Adam's disobedience ,or to the evil inclination of man. Not to creation or some seperate creation.

From what I have studied, the consented withness is a witholding of Grace, an absence of light in the reprobate.

Here is something from Gill. I apologize for the length, but I find it truthfull to the Word of the Holy Writ.




The Lord hath made all things for himself; yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

1. These words are not to be understood of Godís creating all things out of nothing, or of his production of creatures into being for his own glory, nor of his wise ordering and disposing all things in providence for himself which are both truths, but not of this text. It is certain that all things that are made, are made by Jehovah, for himself, and not another; not because he had need of them but to declare his greatness, and communicate his goodness, for his will and pleasure, his praise and glory; yet this is not intended here, for the word here used is neither adb nor tÁ[, which are commonly used when creation, and the works of it, are spoken of. It is also most certain, that all things in this world, as they are upheld and preserved in their being by God, so they are governed, influenced, ordered, and disposed of by him, for the good of his creatures, and the glory of his name; yet not this, but the decrees, purposes, and appointments of God, respecting his creatures, are here designed; in which sense the word l[p, here used, is sometimes to be taken, as in Exodus 15:17: Thou shalt bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of thine inheritance, in the place, O Lord, which tl[p, thou hast appointed for thee to dwelt in, in the sanctuary, O Lord, which thy have established.For the tabernacle, or sanctuary, was not yet made. So in Psalm 31:19: O how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which,tl[p,thou hast prepared, provided, and appointed, in thine eternal counsel and covenant, for them that trust in thee before the sons of men.In the same sense the word poie>w is used in the New Testament, particularly in Mark 3:14, And he,ejpoi<hse, made,or ordained twelve.And in Hebrews 3:2, Who was radical,tw~ poi>hsanti, to him that made, or appointed him.Now the sense of these words is this: that all things are appointed by God for his own glory; all things, particularly respecting man, concerning his temporal estate, the time of his birth, the place of his abode, his station and condition of life, the various vintages of it, prosperous and adverse, death itself, and all the means leading on to it; as well as all things respecting his spiritual and eternal state, the provision and mission of a Say tour, both as to the time of his coming into the world, and of his sufferings and death, with all the circumstances thereof, the conversion of a sinner, time, place, said means, all times of darkness, desertion, and comfort; yea, the final state and portion of all men: all these are fixed and appointed by God, and, in one way or another, make for his glory; yea, even he has appointed the wicked for the day of evil,which is mentioned partly to illustrate the general proposition in the text, and partly to obviate an objection, which might be taken from them against all things being made or appointed for his glory. But,

2. It is commonly said, that it is our sentiment, and the sense we give of this text, and what may be inferred from the doctrine of predestination, that God made man to damn him; whereas this is neither our sentiment; nor is it the sense we give of this text, nor is it to be inferred from the doctrine of predestination; for there is a wide difference between Godís making man to damn him, trod his appointing wicked men to damnation for their wickedness, which is the meaning of this text, and of the doctrine of reprobation we assert. We say, that God made man neither to damn him nor to save him; neither salvation nor damnation were Godís ultimate in making man, but his own glory, which will be answered one way or another, either in his salvation or damnation. It is asked, "What is it that they would lifter from these words? Is it that God made men wicked?" To which I answer, no. We know as well as this interrogator that God made man upright,and that he has made himself wicked; and abhor, as much as he, the blasphemy of God being the author of sin, or of his making his creatures wicked. It is one thing for God to make men wicked, another to appoint a wicked man to eternal wrath on the account of his wickedness. The same author goes on to interrogate, "Is it with Dr. Twiss, that all, besides the elect, God hath ordained to bring forth into the world, in their corrupt mass, and to permit them to themselves to go on in their own ways, and so finally to persevere in sin; and lastly, to damn them for their sin, for the manifestation of his justice on them?" This passage of the Doctorís is picked out as a very exceptionable one; though for my part, I think it fitly expresses both the sense of this text and of the doctrine of reprobation, and is to be justified in every part of it. He says, that God ordained to bring forth all, besides the elect, into the world in their corrupt mass.And where is the hurt of saying this? Is it not fact that they are brought into the world in this manner? Nor is it repugnant to the perfections of God to produce, bring into being, and multiply the individuals of human nature, though that nature is vitiated and corrupted with sin, which lie may do, and does, without being the author of their wickedness; nor is this injurious to, or any particular hardship on, the non-elect, since the same is true, and is what we, with the Scriptures, affirm of the elect of God themselves. The Doctor proceeds to observe, that God ordained to permit them to themselves to go on in their own ways, and so finally to persevere in sin.That God does give up men to their own heartsí lust (Ps. 81:11, 12), as he did the Israelites of old, and suffers whole nations to walk in their own ways (Acts 14:16), as he did the Gentiles formerly for many hundreds of years, is certain; and for God to ordain, or determine, to permit them, can be no more contrary to his perfections than the permission itself; nor does such an appointment infringe the liberty of their wills; nor can it be any injustice in God to suffer them finally to persevere in sin, since they say, we will walk after our own devices, and we will every one do the imagination of his evil heart (Jer. 18:12). And, whereas the Doctor concludes that God has ordained to damn them for their sin, for the manifestation of his justice on them:this fitly expresses the sense of the text and of the doctrine of reprobation, especially that part of it which divines call pre-damnation. Reprobation may be distinguished into preterition and predamnation. Preterition is Godís act of passing by and leaving some, who are called the rest,when he chose others to salvation; and is the effect of Godís sovereign good will and pleasure, being an act over and above the fall, and without the consideration of it, or of any actual sin or transgression whatever; nor is this unbecoming the moral perfections of God, or doing any injustice to his creatures, since the objects of this act were considered in the pure mass of creatureship, were found in this pure mass, and left in it, God neither putting nor supposing any wickedness in them. Predamnation is Godís appointing men to damnation, in consideration and on account of sin; not Godís decree, but sin, which interferes between the decree and the execution of it, is the cause of damnation: God damns no man but for sin, nor does he appoint any to damnation but on account of it. Now, if it is not unjust to damn men for sin,it cannot be an unrighteous thing with God to appoint unto damnation for it. These things being considered, the doctrine of reprobation will not appear so horrible and shocking as it is represented to be by our opponents. Our author goes on and observes, "or lastly, they only mean that God, for the glory of his justice, had appointed, that wicked men perishing impenitently in sin, should he obnoxious to his wrath; and then they assert a great truth." But we mean more than this, we mean not only that such persons who are left to persevere in sin,and remain finally impenitent, are obnoxious to the wrath of God, but that they are appointed to wrath; and which we believe to be the sense of this text, and the truth contained in it. Though,

3. It is observed, that the words should be rendered, the Lord hath made all things to answer to themselves,or airily to refer to one another, even the wicked for the day of evil.But supposing that the word whn[ml is derived from hn[, to answer,it should not be rendered to answer to themselves but to him,since the affix to it is singular, and not plural, and the meaning will be, that the Lord has made,or appointed all things to answer to himself,that is, to his own will and pleasure, and to subserve the ends of his own glory. Agreeable to this sense of the phrase the Jewish writers interpret it. R. Sol Jarchi explains it by wswlyq lybÁb for his praise.R. Isaac by wnwxrz zxpj ą[ml, for his will and pleasure.R. Jonah by hxwr wb ąyg[l, for the thing in which he takes pleasure.R. David Kimchi thinks it may be rightly explained by wrwb[b, for himself,or for his own sake.All which confirm our sense of it. Nor is the meaning of the words, that God has made the wicked man to be the executioner of evil to others; though this is sometimes the case, and is such a sense of the words, as is no ways subversive of the doctrine of reprobation. But the plain meaning of them is,that God has appointed all things for his own glory, and which, the will secure even in the destruction of wicked men, to which for their sins they are justly reserved; and this sense of them is confirmed by the Targum, Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions.

melted
06-17-05, 12:47 PM
My thoughts were not addressed previously, so I will restate them in different words.

God created evil by creating something other than Himself. He is perfect and holy while nobody else is. It's really that simple.

No being can be righteous without the alien righteousness of God. Apart from God's grace, all things are evil of themselves. On the one hand you have perfection, and on the other you have non-perfection.

God's sovereign purpose requires that He control every proton, neutron and electron as someone else said. The source of evil still comes from us and not from Him though. God is the ultimate source in creating evil creatures, but the creature himself must be the source of the evil or there is no such thing as accountability.

Man's depravity is the battery in the evil device, but God controls the device. God created the battery but does not supply the battery.

Let's try another way: God's creation of man cannot be said to be evil. God's own perfection cannot be said to be evil. Man's lack of perfection cannot be said to be evil on God's part. Man's excersise of the evil within him as a result of his imperfection is an afront to God and man is accountable.

I am trying very hard to join God's sovereignty with His inability to author sin.

Brandan
06-17-05, 12:57 PM
I am trying very hard to join God's sovereignty with His inability to author sinNo need to try hard. He simply is not the approver of sin, nor is He a sinner. He is the Creator and the Sustainer of All things. He is the ULTIMATE cause of all things - not the chargeable cause of all things. God cannot be charged with committing sin - duh! What a stupid concept!

I'm sorry, it's just I think there is almost some superstitious attitude amongst the people of God that they are afraid to assert a doctrine for fear of making God the "author of sin." The Bible never ever refers to this concept nor does it use this terminology. This is UNBIBLICAL terminology. The Bible says that God created all things. The Bible says that God CREATES (present - not past tense) evil.


Brandan? DO these people subscribe to this teaching of God being the source of evil and sin in creation? And infusing this into man? OR creating it and detmining it without secondary causes? Evil does not find its source in God's character - NEVER EVER! What a blasphemous thought. Nobody I have ever met believes that tripe. Oh my! But ALL Evil finds its source ALWAYS AND ULTIMATELY in God's purpose. Of course it finds itself in secondary causes - but the root cause - the underlying cause is the Creator's purpose. This is not difficult to understand. God's purpose is the cause of all things. If God's purpose is not the cause of all things then no things would happen. You can't have things happen independent of God's purpose causing them. Again - this is not a difficult concept. I'm not trying to insult anyone and if I am, I apologize. But this is extremely easy.

Brandan.

melted
06-17-05, 01:23 PM
But this is extremely easy.
Brandon,

I just want to say that I agree - it is extremely easy to understand God's sovereignty. Everything that happens is by decree.

The problem I have is making this work with man's accountability. The source of evil (battery of evil) must lie within man. God creates this source, but does not supply it. Does this make sense?

In your understanding of this important subject, how do you logically assign man accountability? I understand that we can just say "man is accountable" because the Bible says so. That's good enough for me! But, I also like to understand it logically.

If the marriage of God's sovereignty and man's accountability is easy for you, then you do better than I. Maybe the Lord will grant me such maturity soon :)

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 01:26 PM
I'm sorry, it's just I think there is almost some superstitious attitude amongst the people of God that they are afraid to assert a doctrine for fear of making God the "author of sin." The Bible never ever refers to this concept nor does it use this terminology. This is UNBIBLICAL terminology. The Bible says that God created all things. The Bible says that God CREATES (present - not past tense) evil.

Evil does not find its source in God's character - NEVER EVER! What a blasphemous thought. Nobody I have ever met believes that tripe. Oh my! But ALL Evil finds its source ALWAYS AND ULTIMATELY in God's purpose.Of course it finds itself in secondary causes - but the root cause - the underlying cause is the Creator's purpose. This is not difficult to understand. God's purpose is the cause of all things. If God's purpose is not the cause of all things then no things would happen. You can't have things happen independent of God's purpose causing them. Again - this is not a difficult concept. I'm not trying to insult anyone and if I am, I apologize. But this is extremely easy.

Brandan.

Brandan, you are not insulting myself at all. Please do not tire from this, I needed to study something hard and this thread has given me that interest, so thank you and Bob, and Mike.

I agree nothing happens independantly of God purpose. You state something I never thought of.

Evil does not find its source in God's character - NEVER EVER! But ALL Evil finds its source ALWAYS AND ULTIMATELY in God's purpose



I believe scripture states that ALl that God does is from His character. How can He purpose something, that is not part of His character? Better yet, where does scripture show that God can do anything outside of any of His attributes.

Did you read what I posted from Gill? DO you disagree with what he said? Not that he is the ultimate infallible barometer, but I believe exactly what he states.

Is it that God made men wicked?" To which I answer, no. We know as well as this interrogator that God made man upright,and that he has made himself wicked; and abhor, as much as he, the blasphemy of God being the author of sin, or of his making his creatures wicked.


I see nothing wrong with while maintaining that God is Sovereign in all that comes to pass.

L-Today
06-17-05, 01:40 PM
I am very sorry to bring Christ's immutability into this thread, but it was Ian who carried it into here from the one closed.


Ian,

The Great Exchange of Atonement decreed in eternity by our Triune God was not about any mutual exchange, fusion or infusion of essences - divine into men, and sinful into God-Man. Nor was it even a one-sided injection of sin into Jesus Christ. It was the exchange of records, or accounts, in the sense that regenerated into sanity and Godly reason people understand substitution or atonement to mean. We are proclaimed righteous precisely because of NON-STOP righteousness of our Divine Substitute. The redeemed men will never become gods, nor our Lord Jesus Christ has ever been or ever will be a man. Jesus Christ was born, lived and died GODMAN which is not the same as man. If His human nature was made into sin, He would have stopped being GODMAN that very instant.

Jesus Christ's humanity was SINLESS - that is why He is so SPECIAL. The definition of ''Jesus Christ'' is SINLESSNESS=RIGHTEOUSNESS without which He is not Jesus Christ. He came from Heaven to die for His own, which He did - PERFECTLY, not for a second ceasing to be Jesus Christ the HOLY Lamb of God.

The death of Christ, decreed in eternity was, of course, in His human nature - in what else could it possibly be? I thought most people on earth heard about human Jesus dying on the cross. But does it make God mutable? On the contrary, God's and Christ's attribute of HOLINESS - both divine and human in the Son, REMAINED IMMUTABLE precisely because He IS immutable in His sinlessness - and that is the whole point of Christianity. God becomes GODMAN and pays the PENALTIES His people deserve to receive, by this payment satisfying=propiciating Judge's wrath. Whoever heard of a ransom paid being infused into a redeemer? Immutability is about God's attributes – here we are talking about His unchanging HOLINESS, which does not mean that He is static and never changes course of action as was His pleasure to decree in eternity and execute in time.

It is not squirmishness which makes a child of God shrink in horror at the thought of Holy Jesus Christ being turned into literal sin but the fact that there is no God and no Christ if this infusion blasphemy is accepted. If Christ became literal sin, there goes the Gospel - because the OBJECT of the Gospel is gone. Christians worship Christ from His birth to His death, and especially on the cross where their redemption and atonement took place. Now, are we allowed by God to worship sin, and not only sin but the whole heap of it? And yet that is exactly what we would be worshipping at the cross if the infusion theory is believed. Millions of Christians turning to the cross suddenly would see not their Holy Saviour courageously suffering the agonies of hell in their stead but some revolting ‘’drain’’ of heaving evil! And it should be clear even to an unbeliever that without the Object of the Gospel - IMMUTABLE - there is no Christianity and no God.

It seems that you will continue ''making time'' for this purpose of yours, Ian, until everybody gets used to and eventually accepts Jesus Christ as ''sink'' and every kind of abomination. God the Father and the Holy Spirit could NEVER reveal the Son, the Pure Lamb of God, the Lord of Glory, the OVERCOMER of the world as an evil creature – just at the moment when His immutable holiness mattered most of all.

You are hoping that Brandan will see Christ turned into sin the way you see our Lord turned into evil. Oh no, please God almighty and merciful Lord, I am praying with all my sinful puny heart: may such darkness never descend upon dear brother Brandan or anyone else! And may our Lord God in His infinite mercy enlighten you, Ian, as to God's and Christ's immutable holiness.

Luba.

Brandan
06-17-05, 01:44 PM
Did you read what I posted from Gill? DO you disagree with what he said? Not that he is the ultimate infallible barometer, but I believe exactly what he states.


Is it that God made men wicked?" To which I answer, no. We know as well as this interrogator that God made man upright,and that he has made himself wicked; and abhor, as much as he, the blasphemy of God being the author of sin, or of his making his creatures wicked. Yes I disagree with Gill's premise that if God made man wicked then this would make Him evil Himself. Look at this passage: Job 26:13, (KJV), By his spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent.

I see nothing wrong with while maintaining that God is Sovereign in all that comes to pass.

I believe scripture states that ALl that God does is from His character. How can He purpose something, that is not part of His character? Better yet, where does scripture show that God can do anything outside of any of His attributes.

OK, here are some more questions for you given to you to help you understand.

Does God purpose everything? Yes/No

If no, then God is not a Sovereign God. If Yes, then how does stuff happen against His Sovereign Purpose? Does it go against His will? Is Evil against His Will/Purpose?

If Evil goes against His purpose, then He has not purposed EVERYTHING. You must have evil being a part of God's purpose - and this in no way is a bad reflection on God's Holy perfection. Besides, if God were to actually do "evil" things, who could call that evil? God is incapable of doing anything evil. If He were to slay millions of men for His pure delight - who could charge Him with being evil? After all, does He not have the right to do as He desires and call all that He does good? What if He decided to make man wicked. Why would that make Him evil? I have no idea why unless of course you subscribe to eternal law philosophy which states that God too must be held to the same standards that He requires of His creatures.

Brandan

Mickey
06-17-05, 01:48 PM
God created evil by creating something other than Himself. He is perfect and holy while nobody else is. It's really that simple.


Melted, so trees, water, and air are evil? Is this what you are saying? If so this is borderline Gnosticism. The nature of anything is determined by the decreed purpose of that thing in God's plan. The fact that it exists does not mean it automaticly assumes some type of identity. It's identity or nature is determined by God.

Is it that God made men wicked?" To which I answer, no. We know as well as this interrogator that God made man upright,and that he has made himself wicked; and abhor, as much as he, the blasphemy of God being the author of sin, or of his making his creatures wicked.

Joe, I dissagree with this statement. The are many things that our convo has not touched on yet that arte essential to understanding the Doctrin of Evil. We must understand what scripture means by 'upright' and how it is that Adam sinned if he had no previous proclivity to sin. The other is Satan, you assume he was created good in the sense that he was not evil at that point, but only became evil after he sinned outwardly. There are other factors that I do not have time for at this point to identify. I'm sorry that I haven't been more involved with this thread, but school and work has me pretty busy. I will post more later.

As I stated earlier there are many propositions that you have confessed to be true, what I think Brandon ,Bob and I can see is all of them lined up and some contradicting. Time permitting and Lord willing we can get this all hashed out.

Mike

Brandan
06-17-05, 01:51 PM
God created evil by creating something other than Himself. He is perfect and holy while nobody else is. It's really that simple.

So trees, water, and air are evil? Is this what you are saying? If so this is borderline Gnosticism. The nature of anything is determined by the decreed purpose of that thing in God's plan. The fact that it exists does not mean it automaticly assumes some type of identity. It's identity or nature is determined by God.Exactly Mike. This is gnostic thinking - I forgot to mention it and am glad you did. You are spot on, and this type of thinking is in CRITICAL need of being corrected.

melted
06-17-05, 02:24 PM
God created evil by creating something other than Himself. He is perfect and holy while nobody else is. It's really that simple.


Melted, so trees, water, and air are evil? Is this what you are saying? If so this is borderline Gnosticism. The nature of anything is determined by the decreed purpose of that thing in God's plan. The fact that it exists does not mean it automaticly assumes some type of identity. It's identity or nature is determined by God.
No, of course I did not mean that. I meant concious beings with the ability to do good or evil. Inanimate objects and animals do not have this nature.

My point is that any BEING (with a spirit) that is not God is not perfect on its own. Surely we can agree here? Angels are not perfect on their own. Man is not perfect on his own.

What follows from that acknowledgement is that the simple act of creating man and angels means that God has created evil beings, just as He purposed of course.

God has not authored the sin that comes from evil, but He has created the evil creature. God purposes and directs the sin from that evil, but is not accountable for it.

Pro 16:9 The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.


Again, how do you marry man's accountability with your understanding of this subject?

melted
06-17-05, 02:30 PM
Exactly Mike. This is gnostic thinking - I forgot to mention it and am glad you did. You are spot on, and this type of thinking is in CRITICAL need of being corrected.[/color][/color]
BROTHER Brandon,

While I appreciate the rebuke, it is misplaced as I have not condoned what BROTHER Mike has postulated. In the paragraph under the one Mike quoted, I stated "beings" - meaning man and angels.

Let us humbly divide Scripture together to the glory of God alone.

-Kyle

Bob Higby
06-17-05, 02:34 PM
If God created the evil being but not the evil within that being, the evil is separate from creation and is not created--it is instead a mysterious eternal principle that has infected the universe.

The problem I have is making this work with man's accountability. The source of evil (battery of evil) must lie within man. God creates this source, but does not supply it. Does this make sense?

If God decrees his hatred of something that he creates and states that he will hold those accountable who engage in activity springing from it, then we cannot question his sovereignty. The 'supplier' as you state is not God's nature or character, but the same type of power that sustains quantum physics--the physical evil of the universe. God creates galaxies that collide with one another and blow each other up, etc. He sustains them in their path, existence, and activity. All this in contrast to other galaxies that function according to perfect order and the law of relativity.

I must be away from the forum for a while on a trip; I hope all of you continue on well in my absence! Grace and peace, --Bob

melted
06-17-05, 02:40 PM
Sister Luba,

While I dislike the cross posting, I believe Brother Ian might have difficulty with this passage:

Act 2:36
(36) "Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ--this Jesus whom you crucified."

The same Greek is used here.

I beg forgiveness for posting this here as the other thread is locked.

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 02:41 PM
Is it that God made men wicked?" To which I answer, no. We know as well as this interrogator that God made man upright,and that he has made himself wicked; and abhor, as much as he, the blasphemy of God being the author of sin, or of his making his creatures wicked.

Joe, I dissagree with this statement. The are many things that our convo has not touched on yet that arte essential to understanding the Doctrin of Evil. We must understand what scripture means by 'upright' and how it is that Adam sinned if he had no previous proclivity to sin. The other is Satan, you assume he was created good in the sense that he was not evil at that point, but only became evil after he sinned outwardly. There are other factors that I do not have time for at this point to identify. I'm sorry that I haven't been more involved with this thread, but school and work has me pretty busy. I will post more later.Mike



Well, I agree with it!!!!! IT was JG who penned it in regards to the "real" Bill Twisse. Both maintain a supra ordo, yet they still errored because the went farther than others, but not far enough as I mentioned earlier. Perhaps in 300 years, one will finally go to the ultimate conclucion and say sin is part of the Godhead attributes. I sure hope not.

Mike, this is where language becomes the issue and arguing over words more than the intention. It is not I who is saying anything, all I am doing is parroting Scripture.

Solomon said upright, I say upright.

The Holy Spirit obviously had ample time to say that Satan was created evil. There is nothing in the Writ that hints of this Mike. If we read what is written below, how can one come to discern the opposiyte of what the Holy Spirit inspired the writers to pen? So I do nto believe I am assuming anything other than what is written.

Ezekiel 28:12 (KJV)


ďSon of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.Ē

13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. 14 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.Ē




15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. 16 By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 02:43 PM
I must be away from the forum for a while on a trip; I hope all of you continue on well in my absence! Grace and peace, --Bob


Peace of Christ be with you Bob. And thank you again for inciting a flame of study that had dwindled in me.


Joe

Brandan
06-17-05, 03:02 PM
I am bowing out of this conversation for now. There has been enough posted by me and others for people to come to an understanding by God's grace alone. All, please feel free to continue in this conversation - I will just observe.

B.

lionovjudah
06-17-05, 04:27 PM
I am bowing out of this conversation for now. There has been enough posted by me and others for people to come to an understanding by God's grace alone. All, please feel free to continue in this conversation - I will just observe.

B.


Brandan, your input is noted and causing me a "good discomfort" I am noticing the digression here also from the original intent of the thread. Perhaps we need to read the first post again. Stay focused on that, then create new threads.

Look at the ground we have covered.

reprobation
decree
hardening
origin of evil
creation.

I mean, 1000 of volumes have been written on these subjects for eternity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

L-Today
06-17-05, 06:11 PM
Dear Melted,

Which cross posting you did not like and why?
L-Today.

melted
06-17-05, 08:02 PM
Dear Melted,

Which cross posting you did not like and why?
L-Today.
Luba,

My own! I was saying I did not really want to clutter this thread with further speak of the previously closed thread, but was adding my $.02 any way. :)

Mickey
06-17-05, 11:16 PM
The source of evil (battery of evil) must lie within man. God creates this source, but does not supply it. Does this make sense?


Kyle, I know you are trying to find a good analogy to convey what you mean, but I am going to go with this analogy to prove a point. You use a battery as an example. Letís use it. A battery is a source of power. Inside is maybe zinc, manganese dioxide and some other stuff to store up volts so that it can provide a charge to a circuit. When a battery is made we have to be careful to make sure that everything is right so that we don't build up a wrong charge. This process is very precise so that we get the intended result from the product. OK, we just created a source and now all it needs is a path or circuit to work its magic.


Now what flows through circuit? The volts that were contained in that battery of course. When we measure the volts and current in a circuit we are measuring what is coming from that battery.


This is still different with God though. The chemical reaction we get in the battery is something we initiate and it does the rest. But in God's world we know that creation, everything up to this very chemical event and the event itself was a decree from God. God decreed these volts would pass through this resistor and that conductor and that transformer to that light. The whole event was predestined by God to take place the way it did. But the thing is without a closed and complete circuit that battery just sits there. It still has the potential but all those volts need a place to go. So an event must be initiated. So it is with God if He does not initiate an event it does not happen.


I hope this was clear. I know this may seem silly to over analyze this analogy but it provided me the opportunity to make a point.


Mike

Mickey
06-17-05, 11:24 PM
Brandan, your input is noted and causing me a "good discomfort" I am noticing the digression here also from the original intent of the thread. Perhaps we need to read the first post again. Stay focused on that, then create new threads.

Look at the ground we have covered.

reprobation
decree
hardening
origin of evil
creation.

I mean, 1000 of volumes have been written on these subjects for eternity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Joe, this is the point I was trying to make earlier. It is almost impossible to discuss any of these issues without bringing one of these other topics up. Theology is logical and everything is intertwined--it all relates. When we disagree on things other things must be introduced to show the inconsistencies of ones understanding. If one holds to two propositions and they are diametrically opposed then one or both of them must be wrong. That is unless that person holds to paradox.

Mickey
06-17-05, 11:43 PM
The problem I have is making this work with man's accountability. The source of evil (battery of evil) must lie within man. God creates this source, but does not supply it. Does this make sense?

In your understanding of this important subject, how do you logically assign man accountability? I understand that we can just say "man is accountable" because the Bible says so. That's good enough for me! But, I also like to understand it logically.

If the marriage of God's sovereignty and man's accountability is easy for you, then you do better than I. Maybe the Lord will grant me such maturity soon



Well Kyle you have a few options here.

1.) You can follow the doctrine of predestination to its Logical conclusion and accept that God did create sin and causes men to sin. You can put your struggle with accountability to bed by accepting that God is still going to hold man accountable that is unless they are the Elect and Christ bore the punishment of their sins.



2.) You can reject that God causes men to sin. You can say that man brought sin into the word and God will hold them accountable for that. But you will have to deal with the fact that you now have the problem of another creator (man and angel), where did sin come from, and God does not cause everything therefore there are events taking place in His world He has to compensate for, but you will save God from taking the blame for mans sin.



3.) You can just ignore it all and move on.

melted
06-18-05, 07:40 AM
Well Kyle you have a few options here.

1.) You can follow the doctrine of predestination to its Logical conclusion and accept that God did create sin and causes men to sin. You can put your struggle with accountability to bed by accepting that God is still going to hold man accountable that is unless they are the Elect and Christ bore the punishment of their sins.



2.) You can reject that God causes men to sin. You can say that man brought sin into the word and God will hold them accountable for that. But you will have to deal with the fact that you now have the problem of another creator (man and angel), where did sin come from, and God does not cause everything therefore there are events taking place in His world He has to compensate for, but you will save God from taking the blame for mans sin.



3.) You can just ignore it all and move on.
Thanks Mike, you're right. I do need to make these important issues work logically and biblically. I appreciate the wisdom shared in this thread and will surely ponder it for some time.

May the Lord bless us ever more with His wonderful grace and knowledge.

Col 2:2-3 that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God's mystery, that is, Christ Himself, (3) in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

ray kikkert
06-18-05, 08:00 AM
Well Kyle you have a few options here.

1.) You can follow the doctrine of predestination to its Logical conclusion and accept that God did create sin and causes men to sin. You can put your struggle with accountability to bed by accepting that God is still going to hold man accountable that is unless they are the Elect and Christ bore the punishment of their sins.



2.) You can reject that God causes men to sin. You can say that man brought sin into the word and God will hold them accountable for that. But you will have to deal with the fact that you now have the problem of another creator (man and angel), where did sin come from, and God does not cause everything therefore there are events taking place in His world He has to compensate for, but you will save God from taking the blame for mans sin.



3.) You can just ignore it all and move on.

Doc brother, good simple lay out, though number 3 is number 2 in actual fact. Ignoring it is to reject it.

At the end of the day , this is where the rubber hits the road. You have to get your hands dirty with the Scripture texts Brandon sent through. It is these "in your face" texts that get to the nitty gritty. It took me some time as well to see and understand that the Lord controls all and yet we as creatures are "accountable". The whine and sing song of "what about man's responsibility?" is the rail of the scoffer. You want evidence of responsibility?...... check out the texts Brandan sent through, or what about Abraham in Genesis 15 and you shall see how "responsible" a creature is.

Again I would refer to the book of Job where the Lord answers Job out of the whirlwind in the chapters 38-42. If you have questions or ever are asked questions regarding the responsibility of the creature, consider the Word of the Lord here.

lionovjudah
06-18-05, 10:03 AM
Joe, this is the point I was trying to make earlier. It is almost impossible to discuss any of these issues without bringing one of these other topics up. Theology is logical and everything is intertwined--it all relates. When we disagree on things other things must be introduced to show the inconsistencies of ones understanding. If one holds to two propositions and they are diametrically opposed then one or both of them must be wrong. That is unless that person holds to paradox.


I know what your are saying Mike. The problem is when we try to cover all at once without systematically moving from one to the next that we end up with "birds Nest Theology".

It is intertwined, but we also have to balnce that with the fact that we do not end up saying if one part is "wrong" according to our fallible limited understanding, that everything else falls. This dominoe premise does not have to happen. Because I agree with Gill, does not mean I deny the Sovereignty of God, or the virgin birth or the incarnation.


As an aside, not everything that "appears" paradoxial in view is a contradiction. Paradoxes which are not based on a hidden error generally happen at the fringes of language and require extending the context (or language) to lose their paradox quality.


So we shall proceede with the dialogue.


Joe

Brandan
06-20-05, 09:40 AM
See attached: Vincent Cheung's Booklet on the Problem of Evil (rmiweb)

Brandan
06-20-05, 09:44 AM
See attached: A Biblical Theodicy by Gary Crampton (Trinity Foundation)

lionovjudah
06-20-05, 11:53 AM
THe articles appear to stop short of what you, Bob and Mike espouse Brandan.

I could agree with VC's last 2 lists he utylizes. That yes, God has a purpose for evil. But he rightly stops there where I believe you go further attempting to "logically" conclude something that I do not find necessary to delve into.


There is no way we can answer the reason for suffering, useless suffering, in the world.

The second article refers to Deut 29:29, which I am comfortable with as an answer. But since "secret" or "mystery" are 4 letter words with some, you guys will disagree with me!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I did some reading and reflection this weekend on the original thread. AM I correct to say that the decree of reprobation does not equal the decre of final damnation nor the decree of evil/sin?

As I look back, could someone please comment on the scriptures that speak of God hating the wicked, That He is light, there is no darkness in Him. Or in Romans what is meant when Paul speaks of God leaving men and turning them over to their own lustfull desires.

Brandan
06-20-05, 02:14 PM
Do Some Things Happen that are not Predestined? by CC Morris (http://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=394)

Absolute Predestination by Gilbert Beebe (http://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=363)

Absolute Predestination : A Dialogue by Gilbert Beebe (http://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=365)


God's Decree


by Jonas C. Sikes, 1929








If Jehovah is Infinite in all His ways,


Giving life to man and numbering his days,


Who dares to impeach Him if in His wise plan


He gave shape and direction to the ways of man?








If He in His wisdom did all things create,


Should He turn loose the helm, leave things to Fate?


Did He not have a right in His sinless decree


To mark the way for both you and for me?








If He did decree just what we should do,


I cannot arraign Him, say brother, can you?


Before whom will you try Him as judge of your court?


Who will act as your clerk and make your report?








If all things are in the decree of His will


And all things are working the same to fulfill,


Who but a vile sinner too wicked to bow,


Would call Him in question or say, What doest thou?








If He decree the death of His only Son,


The sinless, the righteous, the most Holy One,


And this did not make Him the author of sin,


To make Him the author, where will you begin?








Will you begin with Judas whose act was foretold,


And as was determined His Master he sold?


Did not the dear Savior say woe to that man,


I go as determined in God's holy plan.








If Pharoah be one you think would no doubt,


Prove that God's purpose was not carried out,


Did not God command him by Moses you know?


Saying, thus sayeth Jehovah, let My people go.








Yet I will harden, yes, harden his heart,


That he shall refuse and not let them depart,


Till I bring My just plagues on all of your foes,


And thus get Me honor on him and his host.








Yet sinners most wicked will oft Him arraign


Against His just counsel, they often complain,


And say, if He decreed all things to the end,


Then He is unjust and the author of sin.








The heathen may rage and imagine vain things,


The lowest, the highest, yea, even the kings,


And shout till the world hear the sound of their din,


The author, the author, the author of sin.








His saints will still praise Him and shout as they go,


Jehovah most holy all things doth foreknow;


His counsel did settle just how they should be,


So shout on you heathen, you don't disturb me.








We learn from an angel that time shall soon end,


And saints shall be welcomed by Jesus, their friend,


This all is established by holy decree,


For this it is written, and thus it shall be.








If all things are certain, then how came them so?


If things were not certain, how could God foreknow?


Were all things to which foreknowledge relate


Made certain by the old heathen goddess of Fate?








We surely know at a thought or a glance,


That things are not left to haphazard or chance,


Will some please tell me that I may once see,


How things can be certain, yet uncertain be?








Now, while you are thinking, I'll come to a halt,


If you don't see the point, it isn't my fault;


But, brother, please tell me how this thing can be?


All things were made certain without a decree.

L-Today
06-20-05, 05:02 PM
Joe,

These ARE hard questions. People struggled with them from the beginning of creation and will continue doing so until our Lord Jesus comes in glory and sorts all of us out.

It is is good that you are asking, thinking God's things, comparing different writers, wrestling with these concepts instead of lazily throwing the whole thing into a paradox-mystery container.

See whether the following is of any use. If not, we'll continue reading more Scripture, taking each of our thoughts into captivity to God our Lord, submitting our likes and dislikes to His authority and to His infinite and unsearchable wisdom.

Do you agree or not that God wrote the scenario of the history of this earth and of the universe before He began speaking it into the material creation?

If you answer ''yes'' - then things, including the most awful evil, must have been included in this scenario, because God could not leave ANYTHING to ''chance'', lest these ''chancy'' things, people or events decide to go into another direction to do something different, affecting other events, etc - wrecking the whole plan of God. So, if your answer is yes - God has written the whole detailed script of the history of His creation, then you must include evil in it.

Or do you disagree? Do you think that God left evil people on their wicked autopilots, each of them inventing and executing his own evilness against God's will? How did they continue functioning - breathing, heart-beat, etc? Who sustained their lives? Themselves? What about hair on their heads that are numbered by their Creator? Does God has power over their bodies but the minds of the wicked are free to roam in any direction? And then their bodies - sustained by God - obey the instruction of these free wicked wills? Or, while they are left to their own evil devices, God then steps in whenever He wants and uses their wicked, unexpected by Him deeds, for His purposes?

One thing nobody is saying: that God injects or infuses some evil into the workers of iniquity. We are taught by God that He created from the beginning different vessels for different purposes, and as such He is the sole and absolute possessor of this clay and all else. He does not have to add extra evil into the vessels of dishonor so that they go and do evil. We are taught that they are created for these very purposes exactly and therefore are intrinsically wicked, because such was God's pleasure, Ro9.22-23 and hundreds of other Biblical passages. Let a pot argue about the ''fairness'' of its Potter and we'll see how far this dissatisfied vessel will get.

God is an eternally loving Father and Saviour to His elect, but a consuming fire to the reprobates, and we read all of these wondrous things of God in His Book. We are endlessly amazed at our salvation. But we also stand in awe at what our Lord God does with them whom He hates and who hate Him. They ARE evil and fully deserve all the swords, famines, captivities, diseases, ruinations and all punishments that our Just and Righteous God metes them.

What do we say at such passages: ''And I will cause them to eat the flesh of their sons and the flesh of their daughters, and everyone shall eat the flesh of his friend in the siege and in the desperation with which their enemies and those who seek their lives shall drive them to despair. . . and say to them, ''Thus says the LORD of hosts: ''Even so I will break this people and this city, as one breaks a potter's vessel which cannot be made whole again; and they shall bury them in Tophet till there is no place to bury.'' Jer 19 (NKJ). And how many chapters are there like this one in the Bible? Many. Are the children of God our Lord supposed to wrinkle their noses, close their eyes and pretend that such things are not in the Bible, or murmur that they were written in a barbaric age while ours is much more civilized and refined? Or do we follow this stupid politically correct world and the present churchianity, echoing them: ''God is love and cannot be so cruel'', thus rejecting the Word of God, begrudging His Perfect right to do as He pleases with His own footstool?

What choice do we have? Either we believe and rejoice that God is sovereign, or we believe that He is not sovereign. He cannot be a little bit sovereign, because if some things are out of His control, He then becomes a co-owner of this creation and thus co-god with these other decision-makers. It is not possible to have THIS our cake and eat it too.

Arminians cannot stand the thought of God's absolute sovereignty and ascribe free will to man, which ''freedom'' leads them straight into creature's will overruling Creator's will. But for a child of God it is the biggest relief, peace and joy of joys that our Almighty God in His infinite wisdom and goodness runs this world exactly as He wills! Who else knows better? Who died in our stead and we are safe in His Righteousness? Whom else do we trust, no matter that we cannot always grasp the events of history and puzzlements of our daily lives?

Keep asking, Joe. I am typing these thoughts as there is nobody I can talk to about these wonderful things. Feel free to disagree, but once you have made up your mind on something, then hold on to this concept, don't forget nor ignore it in your next questions.

L-Today.