View Full Version : The paralysis of analysis

12-17-01, 12:16 AM
A scholar stood at the foot of the cross and heard Jesus say, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."
The scholar then asked Jesus; "Do you mean forgiveness for the elect only, or for the free willers only? Is your forgiveness only for those you have predestined for Heaven? What about those who are not among the elect: are they doomed no matter what?

Obviously, this situation never happened. And I am not using it to be desrespectful to God.

Instead, I want to make this point: I don't know everything about how Jesus saved me, or about what conditions had to happen, and in what order they happened when I was saved, and I really don't care.
All I know is that He saved me.
I don't have all the answers to everything about salvation: I only have The Answer, Jesus Christ.
I cannot explain all about the gospel, but I do have the good news that I have complete forgiveness and eternal life with Christ.

Yet, I spent years analyzing salvation; and all I ended up doing was spinning my wheels paralized with fear and worry about what all a person had to do and in what order to be saved. I discovered that, here I was a saint- an heir of salvation; but instead of being next to God's throne of grace where I belonged, I was still stranded at the foot of the cross: still wrestling with the issues of salvation.
But all that changed when I stopped listening to the sheep, and started listening the Shepherd.

I read so many people's messages on these and other forums who spend so much time "discussing" salvation. Yet I think the real issue is that they are still grappling with the issue of their own salvation. Also I think they just can't come to terms with why God would have saved wretches like you and me: how he could love us so much and redeem people like us who keep on sinning.

God has a life of faith, hope, love and joy for us. It is His plan for us; to grow stronger and closer in our walk with Him. We need to look forward with the Author and Finisher of our faith and His plan for us and not be obsessed with how we or someone else was saved.

Let's keep or eyes on Jesus and the wonderful life he has for us.
Let's not be like Lot's wife and keep looking back.


12-17-01, 08:35 AM
It is one thing to study such things. It is good to study such things. It is honorable to dig deep into the issues and theological concepts and ideas.
But I firmly believe we should NOT get so caught up in the study, saught up in the theological concepts that we forget what matters the most...Christ.

Is it possible that Calvinists are right? YES.
Is it possible that Arminians are right? YES.
Is it possible that we, as limited and finite humans have no real clue on the "ins and outs" and the "schemes and reasons" of how, why, when God saves us? YES.

We have a job to do here...to Glorify God...the "great commission"...to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, mind, souls, body."
As we study, let's not get SOOOOO wrapped up in discussion and debate that we lose sight of Him. I know I have been guilty of that myself!!

(There are, however, somethings that demand our attention...false doctrines and false teachers for example...but things that are well within the pale of orthodoxy we can discuss, and disagree and even debate...but NOT divide over)

12-17-01, 10:29 AM
It's good to "see" you again!:D

__________________________________________________ __Philo: But all that changed when I stopped listening to the sheep, and started listening the Shepherd.
__________________________________________________ __

Me too, Philo. I got tired of searching through so many contradictory opinions. Now, that doesn't mean I'm backing down about Calvinism, (:) ), but I don't think you or anyone else has to agree with me.

I come to this board to participate in friendly debate and discussion. I enjoy having someone else challenge me to think, and challenging others to think. If I ever offend anyone, I want to know, and I'll immediately apologize.

I think God mainly speaks to us through the Bible, his written word. That's the book I spend the most time with, and it's my standard for determining what is and is not true. I think God also speaks to us through each other, and through our experiences. He can use whatever and whomever he pleases. But Scripture is where we go to figure out whether we've understood accurately. It's how I listen to the Shepherd.

I promise to never dish out anything I'm not willing to take!

So, challenge me! I'd love it!

Goodwill to you,

01-08-02, 06:54 PM
Over studying can be bad I agree when it causes one to lose sight of Christ's sacrifice for All of us. (or "Some "of us whichever you believe). Someone pointed out that idolatry can be our own worship of our own intelligence, or our teacher's intelligence of the understanding of the Word. 1 Sam. 15:23- "Stubborness is as iniquity & idolatry". Billy Graham says that "Satan's favorite tool is the word "IF".

01-12-02, 10:06 PM
why is his favorite tool if i was thinking more like pride would be?

01-12-02, 10:13 PM
Hello every one im new here like every one and your thoughts still trying to learn some more every day greg.

01-14-02, 09:21 AM
HI Greg WELCOME. I agree that pride is one of Satan's favorite tools to use against humans. It was his downfall too. I think Billy Graham was thinking in terms of this thread=the paralysis of analysis. TRying too hard to draw your own conclusions from scripture, instead of being led by the Holy Spirit, the word "if" can lead a proud intelligent person in the wrong direction.