This is the day for all Calvinists to call in and have a friendly debate and dialogue with Dr. Brown about why they believe Calvinism to be scripturally true. Dr. Brown will also offer some reflections in light of the tragic tornado in Oklahoma. Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.
Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: I’m perfectly happy to have a discussion or debate about Calvinism vs. Arminianism, but at the end of the day it’s the same; we bow our knees to an all powerful God and go out and do His work!
Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: We may have our differences about Calvinism or Arminianism, but I appeal to all of you to have the heart of God. He desires to have mercy on all!
SPECIAL OFFER! THIS WEEK ONLY!
Three of Dr. Brown’s Classic Debates at More Than 40% Off with Free Shipping! You’ll Receive All Three DVD Debates: A Christian Response to Homosexuality, Does the Bible Provide and Adequate Answer to the Problem of Suffering?, and Did Jesus Really Die for Our Sins? for Your Gift of $30! Postage Paid!
Call 1-800-278-9978 or Order Online!
Oh dear. Just a whiff of the C-word and out come the long TULIP essays on the comments section. Makes me hanker after the brevity and vigour of the Bible, especially that Jesus fellow and all His lovely friends.
Dr Brown, you are a brave man to invite this sort of trouble. I shall enjoy this edition of the programme, as I am back on the internet after a time of no access. You are truly entertaining and informative, since you are able to be profound *without* being prolix.
Oh dear. Just a whiff of the C-word and out come the long TULIP essays on the comments section. Makes me hanker after the brevity and vigour of the Bible, especially that Jesus fellow and all His lovely friends.
Anthea, that is grossly unfair. You would be doing the same thing, if you actually attempted to answer *my* questions about scripture, such as Romans 9, John 6, or these passages that talk about faith being a gift, etc. However, I haven’t seen you even attempt to do so, nor have I seen anyone else attempt to do so. It is real easy to accuse the other person of “essays” and being “prolix” when only one side is answering questions. Apparently, we determine the truth of someone’s statements by the number of words they use in their posts. Apparently, you can’t tell the truth unless you only use a small number of words.
Again, to those of you who are arguing that we should just take the simplest interpretation of scripture, could you please explain why it is that Paul says the following:
2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.
If the apostle Paul tells you to be diligent to rightly handle the word of truth, why are you being so lazy in your interpretation of scripture? Why are you seeking hermeneutics that are *simple* when Paul speaks of *diligence?*
Or what of Peter:
2 Peter 3:16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction.
So, you want to remain “untaught” and just go with what seems “simple” to you, even though Peter says that such people twist the scriptures to their own destruction? I am not saying my position is right. There are some Arminians who know what they are talking about, and are willing to dialogue on an exegetical level. Still, it requires work and effort, and a willingness to learn on the part of both parties.
This laziness is dangerous for a number of reasons. Interestingly enough, Islam uses much the same arguments in regards to the Trinity. In fact, Islam teaches that Christians are in “excess” in their view of God as Triune. They use many of the same arguments Jews do saying “God is not a man” and “one plus one plus one does not equal one.” They argue that *our* position is not “simple,” and will quote many passages of our own scripture trying to show that Jesus is not God, such as “the Father is greater than I” and it takes a while to explain each those texts in its context. Muslims say that such an approach is “prolix” and against the “plain meaning of the text.” I don’t know how this apathetic approach to scripture would ever handle a Muslim who argues in this way.
“Apparently, we determine the truth of someone’s statements by the number of words they use in their posts. Apparently, you can’t tell the truth unless you only use a small number of words”
Using concise and clear language is a skill. C.S. Lewis, a fiercely intelligent and well-read man, had the ability to convey ideas in a manner that was winsome, in part, because of the way that he wrote. Being concise is also an act of courtesy to the reader. It does not imply a lack of intelligence, quite the reverse. Dr Brown has the expertise, and the grace, to make his points in a similarly trenchant way.
Adam, it wasn’t just your posts that were too wordy — lots of the other ones were! My observation was a stinging one, but reflects what I see. Whenever I read overly-long posts that take over the comments section, the impression is that a stream of words is being used to bludgeon people into submission, rather than to make an argument. A few well-chosen words are more effective. That’s why Tyndale’s English won out over the Latinate prose of other translations.
Moreover, since my comment was about writing style, not content, I am under no obligation to answer anyone’s points, except to note that we would all do well to mimic Churchill’s speeches.
I wish the issues were more clearly elucidated i didn’t really understand it from listening to the show 🙁
I wish I had time to dive in here, especially to interact with (and refute!) my Calvinist friends — who are totally welcome to present their views here, long or short (as are all who do so in a civil manner). I just want to urge everyone to take the high road and focus on the issues themselves. Thanks for the great dialogue!
Fair points, Dr Brown. As a lover of English, I get excited about my beautiful language — perhaps over excited at times?
The Calvinist would have people believe that no man can come to a true belief in Christ before being indwelt by the Spirit who gives them the belief in the first place. yet this seems contrary to John 7:39 “(Now he said this about the Spirit, whom those who BELIEVED in him WERE GOING TO RECEIVE, for the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.)” Here is an instance in which people truly believed, truly because the Word acknowledges that they were to be given the Spirit, yet they were not indwelt but that the Spirit was with them, in Christ, not them. To the Calvinist, I would ask, how did they believe without first being indwelt?
I do appreciate your thoughts Adam.
Although you have misunderstood what I have said in a few places.
1. Open Theism:
– You are still of the line of thought that I believe God didn’t know that Judah was going to sacrifice their children to Molech in claiming that is how I exegete the Jeremiah passage. But I specifically countered that claim in post #40 when I stated “Saying that it never entered into His mind is a way of saying that He claims no responsibility for the act and distances Himself from this evil.” and a few lines lower, “You are arguing against open theism which no one has espoused. God knows all things. That’s even a proof he gives to us in His Word that He is God, that he will tell future events before they happen, so that when they happen we will know He is God.” so just to be clear, God is omniscient, nowhere did I claim God didn’t know and argued against the idea myself.
Ephesians 2:8-9 – The natural flow when I read this passage is that the gift is that we are graciously saved through faith. The gift is that God would die on the cross, rise the third day and ascend to heaven to the right hand of the Father proving that sin and death have been defeated. That is grace, that he would send His only Son to atone for us. We are called to believe and have faith in that gracious gift (Mark 1:15, Acts 2:38-41, etc.)
Adam: “When I used the phrase “evil men” to refer to “world” in John 3:16, you took me to mean that I was talking about “everyone,” since everyone is evil”
I never imputed that understanding to you since I know you do not believe that. I was using “evil men” to support my view that it does mean the whole world since the word world is the word used. Sorry for the confusion.
Adam: “The problem is, not only do they work, they also make sense out of why it is that only those who believe on Christ have eternal life.”
This is where we differ so greatly. I think it makes perfect sense with the meaning “whole world” in light of the whole of scripture were we repeatedly are told how to be saved. Humble yourselves, believe, repent, be baptised, come and drink, open the door, etc. In order to do any of the above you have to be drawn because it is the power of hearing the Word (Romans 1:16-32) that reveals wickedness and the need for a saviour. And in many passages it says that once we put faith in Jesus then we will be given the right to be children of God and after faith we will receive the Holy Spirit.
If belief was not a prerequisite, why does John say “but these are written, that ye may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye may have life in his name.” (John 20:31)
He is speaking to non-believers. John says that the reason he wrote this Gospel is to pursuade those who read or hear it to believe that Jesus is God, and that in believing they will inherit life everlasting. Why would John say such a thing if it was not possible to pursuade anyone of these truths if they are unable to understand? It would be a mockery unless John knew that it was the power of “the foolishness of preaching” (1 Cor 1:21) the gospel of Christ that would shine the light upon them. God draws men to His Son through preaching, or hearing the glorious gospel of Christ.
Adam: “First of all, this blinding is specifically said to be done by God in the book of Isaiah:”
Reasons are given. When God does this it is always because of Israel’s wickedness or refusal to turn to Him. ‘And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.’ They are hearing and seeing, but not preceiving their need for God. God is speaking to them, reaching out to them, but they are refusing everything He is doing for them (Isaiah 5:4). It’s important to remember that this passage is Israel specific.
I have not yet read Hartley’s article. I shall do so. But here is an additional reason that the ‘god’ of this world is satan. You and I both agree that everything God does is to His glory and all the works of God glorify Himself. So then we have a contradiction in the 2 Corinthians passage if it’s referring to God since God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, and if God is blinding all unbelievers, then He is robbing Himself of glory as indicated in that very verse, “lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”
If satan is not the ‘god of this world’ then we have God drawing all men to himself (John 12:32) just to blind most of them.
Adam: “If God has a morally sufficient reason for the evil that he ordains, then you really can’t say that. Especially if God is enduring these evil vessels with much patience for our own salvation…”
Ultimate Contradiction. Moral evil? Good sin?
Who are the vessels of wrath? Unbelieving Israel. Israel is the subject of Romans 9. Why did God endure them with much patience? Because Israel had been elected to bring about the line of Messiah. Jesus Christ had to come through his elect to bring salvation to the world. We know that Romans 9 is dealing with Israel since it opens focusing on Israel and closes focusing on Israel. Paul nails away that he is speaking about national Israel. He tells us that Isaac was elected and not Ishmael (elected for what? Ultimately the coming of Messiah), Jacob was elected over Esau for the same purpose. And throughout the entire Tenakh we read about Israel’s rebellion which God endured with much patience so that messiah would come and in whom He would show us much mercy to those who believe. Election in Romans 9 is not to salvation, but elected to be the nation that would lead to messiah. The vessels of mercy are all those who trust in that messiah who came through Israel.
Adam: “Romans 8:29-30 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren; 30 and whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.
You have an unbroken chain from predestination through to glorification.”
Don’t forget the first link in the chain before predestination, foreknew. So the saying should be “You have an unbroken chain from foreknew through to glorification.”
But getting back to the elect and vessels of wrath and mercy, if we read on, Paul is Romans 11 concludes his line of thought and what it all means.
25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
26 And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:
27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.
28 As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers sakes.
29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.
30 For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:
31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy.
32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.
So these vessels of wrath may also obtain mercy and become vessels of mercy just as we have obtained mercy through the cross of Christ. So we have the same subject of discussion, national Israel, the vessels of wrath fitted for destruction who have not had faith (Rom 9:31-32) have all been concluded in unbelief, so that God may have mercy on all if they seek the mercy that the gentiles put their faith in (Rom 11:31).
Thanks Adam, I need to cut my post here. I’ll try to read that Hartley article soon.
Talk to you later.
Thanks for posting that article by Hartley. I have read Pope, Watson, Oden & Olson on Arminianism and find very little detailed exegesis. So I am really doubting the Arminian position and you (Adam) have definitely given me some things to chew on. I do find it awkward that Arminians never touch on the subject of the intercession of Christ, or if they do it is very limited. Sometimes I think this is being dishonest because it seems to me that the intercession of Christ is a huge blow to the Arminian system and is making me rethink some things.
Michael Brown’s comments about “Doomed from the Womb”.. Would also apply to his synergistic theology. All Michael’s comments against Calvinism about God being the cause of unbelievers going to hell because they are predestined to go to hell… Also apply to his theology.. Michael’s theology puts him in the same position as the Calvinist. The only way out for Michael would be to change his theology to open theism. Micheal admits God knows the future perfectly, and God is the creator.
So I ask Michael If God looks down the corridors of time and see’s that James Brown will be born in 1975 and sees that many people in James Brown’s life will witness to him..And many people will tell him about Jesus. But God see that James Brown will never choose God. James Brown by his own free will refuses to repent and believe no matter who talks to him..And God sees James Brown at his death still rejecting Jesus. The I ask Michael Brown “Why would God still create James Brown knowing he will die and go to hell”? Why would God create a person he knows will never choose Jesus? See Dr. Brown you are in a worse boat then the Calvinist. You have a God creating arbitrarily people He knows will never repent to go to hell. But the Calvinist Has a God who leaves sinners loving their sin doing what they love going to hell ..And God gets the Glory. And we have a God who extends His grace to a sinner who does not deserve His grace by way of a perfect Savior who can actually save.
Thank you for your dilligence…..i once was a staunch arminian. When one looks into the history of this position one will see that we do not want to be connected to this. I believe it is Erasmus, the real founder of Arminian thought, believed that salvation is completley the work of man, and that G-d has nothing to do with man’s salvation. Although I do hold to the teachings of “Calvinism” only because when G-d has finally opened my eyes to such teaching in Scripture, it’s all I see in scripture.
Strange how even here G-d has to do the work….He is still curing the blind and deaf to this very day. I love the dialogue here but we must come and discuss in love and truth. We may not see things eye to eye….but we can all come together arm in arm. No matter what we hold to it is exciting to see that the there are those in the Chruch that will stand for what they believe in. :). Shalom.
To Sean F.
Please read 1 Cor 2:14-16. The natural man “can not” understand the things that come from G-d. The word “can” means that the man without the Spirit, does not have the ability.
Ooops sorry not Erasmus but Palagius. 🙂
I keep seeing people say…G-d won’t violate man’s choice, however, the problem isn’t the will….it’s the heart. Since the heart of sinful man can not understand the things that come from G-d (1 Cor. 2:14) and that every inclination of his heart is to do evil continually (Gen 6:5). G-d therefore must intercede by changing the heart of man from a heart of stone to a heart of flesh. Just as the parable of the seed and the sower….the good soil is soil that has benn cultivated and prepared for the seed. The choice is man’s to choose Jesus, however, man can not go agaisnt his nature and choose Jesus without first G-d doing His work first. As John affirms “No one CAN (has the ability) come to me, unless the Father draws him” (John 6:44). I just don’t see why it is such an issue that G-d get all the glory in anyones salvation. Also, for those who say G-d won’t violate our free will….well what about Jonah, he said no to G-d about going to Ninivah, yet G-d intervened and found himself burped up on the beach of Ninivah by a fish. So why doesn’t anyone question this? Why did G-d violate Jonah’s free will? Why didn’t G-d just allow Jonah to go his way in disobediance? Just a thought.
Not sure how Jonah fits here.
Where in the account of Jonah did God violate his will? I’m sure Jonah’s will was still inclined not to go even though God used a fish to get him going in that direction. If Jonah’s will was violated, then Jonah would have gladly wanted to go because his will would have been violated to ‘want’ to go.
Jonah’s will not wanting to go remained intact.
Thank you for responding…..i guess i would say the “will” is slave to our desires……for example if i walk in a room, and im about to watch a movie……and there are two chairs, one a hard wooden one and the other a plush recliner……my desire turns to the recliner because of the comfort it will give me. I am not frozen because my will is independant of my desire. Now, lets take our desire for G-d. The book of Romans teaches us that there is no desire for G-d, “there is no one who understands, no man seeks G-d at any time” (Rom 3:11) now, if this statement is true then we are all in big trouble, because that is the state of man. So as John 6:44 states ” no man can (has the ability, because that is the definition of “can”) come to me except the Father draws him. Even the greek word helko for draw here does not mean to “ask” but to drag, not by violence but by perrsuasion….to compel. As true G-d did not merely ask Jonah, Jonah, said No! and went away on a ship to flee that reponsability.why did’nt G-d merely find another? Because G-d is in complete control. There is no maverick molicule if there is then how does one find peace or joy even. How does one even find peace. I witnessed to my father before he passed away. He rejected the gospel. My peace lies in the fact that I did my responsability, I did the outward call as we are to do to every creature as Yashua commanded, however, it is up to G-d to illuminate the mind to see him. Yeshua does the same today as he did when He was here on Earth. He is still curing the blind and causeing the deaf to hear. His Earthly ministry was a shadow of what His work today is….it honestly is so simple to see when illuminated to see it. Example when the pharasee’s said to Yeshua in John 10…”why do you speak in mysteries? Yeshua said, ” you do not understand BECAUSE you are not my sheep.” Not the other way around. Again, it is G-d who changes the heart FIRST. For He must otherwise we will never see it nor seek Him. Hope i answered good enough. Sorry about the spelling lol. Shalom. 🙂
Thank you Peter.
Though the analogy still breaks down in my thinking. When God draws men and we respond, our hearts are changed and we diligently seek the Lord. Jonah rebelled and fled from God and Nineveh. He was thrown overboard and eaten by a great fish. After dieing, coming back to life and being spit out onto the shore, God tells him the second time to go to Nineveh and he reluctantly goes, tells them they must repent within 40 days and they proceed to heed Jonah’s warning and repent. The Lord pardons them and Jonah gets really upset at that fact (Jonah 4:1), he is so upset that he wants to wait around and witness what happens at the end of the 40 days, so he goes out of the city and makes a tent so he can watch what happens.
When a believer’s heart is changed, he seeks after God, thus his will has changed. Jonah’s will never changed. And after reluctantly doing what God commanded him to do he waits around hoping to see their destruction after the 40 days had passed (Jonah 4:5).
I guess that is the reason I do not see Jonah fitting in here.
Sorry, I meant Perry. Thank you Perry.
Lol yes I see your point, and maybe my analogy is mistaken and i agree with your point….and I see where you are coming from. Please forgive me and my poor thinking. I believe Jonah was a believer indeed, and like us we can still go and sin and disobey G-d. I guess what I’m trying to convey is for those who do not hold that G-d first must change us in our hearts to give us the ability to believe and have faith. And if one holds that man has the freedom of choice to accept or reject Yashua, and if G-d is not in complete control…..then why would G-d interfere with Jonah’s free will? I guess I don’t have a problem with G-d controling everything. Why didn’t G-d after seeing Jonah’s reluctence just say “fine Jonah, I won’t violate your free will, I’ll just find someone else”. And leave him be. I can see how G-d can choose “His chosen people”, merely from His good pleasure. And I sleep well at night knowing that nothing is happening to me outside His control and power, and will.
I guess the only thing i would say to clarify is i dont believe ….G-d draws us, and when we respond our hearts change……i be lieve we have the cart before the horse senerio there…..no I believe G-d chooses whom He wills……then draws us by changing our hearts and then we have the ability to respond.
I have listened to the show and I have found a troubling substance again. I appreciate Dr.Brown acclamation of respect for the Reformed Heritage of Faith and Reformed Believers but unfortunately that acclamation is so frequently not supported by vague and manipulative techniques he uses in his conversations. He is frequently asked point bank question and instead of giving an answer he asks another question… Dr.Brown repeats a mantra of “providing 50 verses” about free will “for every verse” about the true free will i.e. the will of God yet he intentionally or not fails to understand that even if it would be 50 verses for every one verses teaches absolute will of God even in salvation (which is not) those “50” verses are said in a specific context and many times said to believers and on the top of it a mandate of God does not imply an ability of the audience to perform it and that does not make God a hypocrite which Dr.Brown loves to inaccurately assert. Dr.Brown speaks much about his Calvinistic past yet sadly none of that is visibly in his deep misunderstanding of the basic teachings of Reformed Faith and his rather unrealistic decrying of traditional and historic theological terms. In it would be really food if Dr.Brown’s friendly proclamations about Reformed Faith would actually be matched by him correctly presenting this faith and not popular misrepresentations of it. Thank you and I hope Dr.Brown can take a high road here and do the right thing and not get emotional about it but actually factual about what he criticizes.
Wow, you really have got the grasp of the error of Arminianism. What you so clearly wrote is so true……it would be an open theology…….but also I fear there is even more alarming news in Dr Brown’s theology. If G-d does look down the portals of time and “see’s” who will come to Him, and bases His choice on that fact, well….you don’t really have an all knowing G-d at all. If by this means is how G-d comes to knowledge, then this man made god learns!!!…That is NOT the G-d of the Bible. This false teaching is known as progressive theology. That G-d learns anything is completely false. NO! Again there is nothing outside G-d’s control, NOTHING!
Wow. What a deep misrepresentation of the Word of God and of the sovereign, eternal God I adore and serve. (And you obviously failed to grasp the points I was making in my debate with Dr. White.) That being said, if you want to worship a God who ordained the Israelites burning their babies to Molekh, feel free. I’ll stay with the God of the Word who made clear that He had nothing to do with atrocities like that. I truly wish you His grace and truth!
Despeville, I’m not sure what you mean about getting emotional, but I remain totally willing to answer directly and forthrightly any verses or points that are raised to me during the show and would hope that those raising questions to me would be willing to respond to my questions to them.
In any case, time doesn’t permit me to engage in debates here online, but feel free to call into the show any Friday and present your best Calvinist argument. The only thing that matters to me is the truth of the Word for the glory of God. May His grace be yours!
First of all sir, I do not personally attack by stating that you deeply misrepresent the Word. i agree we do have some differences in our view…….and I believe as brothers we need to come to reason with one another. It is my opinion, that there were some questions avoided with Dr. White, and would of loved some answers. My statement is and always has been that although G-d does not ordain sins of man, but that just as He didn’t create lucifer to become Satan, He definitly knew what was going to come to pass and because in His divine soverignty and omniscience. He decrees to use even our and angelic evil for His good purpose. So if you truely feel that He in His nature is outside of total control…..then please give me the verses that state this…..I would be honored to read them.
Also Dr. Brown
If you could please refrain from doing logical fallacies. The ad hominum argument of attacking the man doesnt prove what i was stating as false…..also another of “arguing of the straw man” in which you stated you thought i misrepresented G-d. First of all I never said that G-d ordained evil. I simply said that in G-d’s nature He knows all…..and He chose not to intervine and stop such behavior….also the question of the fact that if one believes that G-d looks down the portals of time and “sees” (actually it’s learning) who will come to him, and bases His divine choice on that action, is in fact progressive theology. Please clarify to us why that isnt. Thank you..
Perry, no personal attack at all on my end, just a strong statement of a strong disagreement with you. Fair enough? And no logical fallacies at all in my comments.
As you know, I’m not able to get into lengthy discussions here, but I shared many verses in the debate with Dr. White that make perfectly clear that God does NOT decree acts of human evil and sin. And there is nothing of “progressive theology” in my views, simply reverence for an eternal, sovereign God. He “learns” nothing; He knows it all before the foundation of time, since He inhabits eternity — again, a simple point made in the debate, based on Isa 57:15, but one that for some reason, you choose to misrepresent here.
Feel free to call into the show one Friday if you’d like to raise a specific question about a specific verse. Again, the many verses I cited in the debate with Dr. White are quite sufficient for now, and I based on my views on the testimony of Scripture about the nature and character of our eternal and sovereign God. We’ll have to leave our discussion here for now, but others are free to join in, as always.
I think both sides would have the same “problem” – “When did God plan?” If God never learns anything, then how could God not be the author of sin (on Calvinism), and “when” would God have “seen” what men would do and “interact/respond” to it by planning to send His Son?
Thank you for your responce Dr.Brown,
First of all, I admire your show and agree with you in 99% of most of what you say, …and I have learned that we don’t have to agree on everthing, but unite in faith and purpose. I am learning and continue to learn and grow, and believe no one beside Yeshua has cornered the market on truth. However, I do enjoy Biblical conversation and debate for the purpose of learning and expanding our thoughts. As I came into the faith as a Arminian, there was always huge peices of the puzzle that just never fit. Since then though as reading more on what the reformers hold to as far as salvation goes, all the peices finally fell into place…..and now see it all over the scriptures. I read Isaiah 57:15, and still do not understand how that shows that G-d is outside of total control, in fact it just supports the perserverence of the saints that G-d promises. However, Proverbs 16:4 doesn’t get any more direct then that. As well as other verses that always as an Arminian had me think what?!!!
Verses like Acts 13:48 ..G-d appointed people to eternal life? What does that mean? I mean it is so clear, they preached the Gospel, and those that were appointed to eternal life believed? So, when we go out and speak the Gospel, only those whom G-d appointed to eternal life will believe. If I may ask? Why does anyone have a problem with this? I know that for me to have come to believe, it was G-d’s work in me first, okay i accept this and all I can do is thank the Lord for His mercy. He gives me the faith to believe as in Eph 2:8-9 states, and gives me the desire for G-d, okay I can accept that for I recognize that the natural man is totally sinful that is our state prior to conversion. Gen 6:5….certain words there are stubborn and we just can not escape them like the word “every” in the Genesis passage. It’s just that i can not seem to get past the fact that giving G-d complete glory in all that has happened and going to happen is not a struggle for me. And that there is passages that maybe I can see as “well G-d is making us like robots”, it is I that has to come to working it out, not G-d. In this I see a totally merciful and benevolent G-d, who makes me rest in peace because I know that whatever happens truly happens for a reason. Even, what man means for evil, G-d means for good. Gen 50:19.
Well, G-d isnt the author of sin, just because one knows about it doesn’t mean one is the author, if I may use an example. There is a theology book I love…..I read it so much that I know all about its content…..however, it didnt come from me originally so therefore I am not the author. Sin, does not come from G-d. I remember a question once asked me….is there an impossability with G-d? And the answer is yes……He can not go against His own nature. Sin, is a violation of His nature, and once man fell, all his posterity has been brought into this sinful state…..it is not Satan who makes us sin, but in fact our own nature…again Gen 6:5….we arn’t sinners because we sin, no we sin because by nature we are sinners. Agian, G-d knew we would fall, and uses our fallen state to show us His great mercies and grace, to His chosen people. So, to answer the question….no man is the author of sin.
But you said “how could God know everything unless He Himself planned and made it happen?” didn’t you?
No i never stated that, I made it very clear that G-d does know all things. There is nothing that G-d does not know about. I only stated that G-d does know about what will ever come to pass, however, He is not the cause of such actions, for example, He did not cause us to sin, that was Adams free will. However, since Adam chose to sin he has blemished the whole human race and now we are concieved in sin. This is known as original sin, we all have it, and has blinded us to the truth to the point that, as Paul states in Romans 3 that no man even seeks God…..no not one! Therefore, mans will has been so totally depraved that without G-d’s intervention man can not come to truth on his own. G-d, has to work the heart of man. For example read the parable, of the sower, the only soil that produces fruit is the soil that has been prepared. Ask any farmer what that means and he will tell you, the soil has to be tilled, cultivated, and worked. Our hearts must first be prepared by the Spirit. G-d changes our hearts from stone to flesh, therefore causes us to “see” and “hear” the gospel. Hence, Yeshua states many time ” for those who have eyes to see and ears to hear” then tells us spiritual truths. I believe even the truth i am relating here must be revealed. Hope I answered well enough.
How can you share in a Great Commission with a Calvinist who is preaching a very different gospel than the non-Calvinist, that is, Christ only died for SOME. Christ may not have died for YOU. Different gospel altogether. Sorry Dr. Brown has a blind spot there.
Comments are closed.