LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Question for non-Calvinists

1 Cor. 4:7 For who sees anything different in you? What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it?

The pitcher in the above photo was a 1st round draft choice and made it all the way to the major leagues. From where did he get his talent and ability? Do athletes, musicians, and other mentally talented people have any abilities that they did not receive from God? Calvinists and non-Calvinists alike refer to all kinds of talent as God given gifts. This begs the following question for non-Calvinists:
What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

I have heard many non-Calvinists claim they chose to come faith in Christ by virtue of their free will. One non-Calvinist said the following on his blog: “Would it violate His sovereignty to give man latitude and freedom to rebel from Him or respond to His wooing and drawing?”

The dictionary defines will as follows:
1. the faculty of conscious and especially of deliberate action; the power of control the mind has over its own actions: the freedom of the will.
2. power of choosing one's own actions: to have a strong or a weak will.
3. the act or process of using or asserting one's choice; volition: My hands are obedient to my will.

If the will springs from your mind as this definition states, then from where did you receive your mind? There are many who die in unbelief that have been thoroughly exposed to the gospel and have had the same amount of wooing as you. Why did you respond to his wooing and drawing, and they did not? What causes your “human will” to exercise faith and their “human will” to reject Jesus? Did you receive this ability from somewhere other than God? Does the pot get something other than what the potter gives? One way or another, could the answer be that you owe your faith to something God gave you that he did not give the unbeliever or did you acquire some faculty that you did not receive from God?

Since non-Calvinists reject the Biblical teaching of God enabling faith by the irresistible grace of the Holy Spirit, please explain how your faith resulted apart from God given attributes. Any answer that acknowledges that faith springs forth from something God given like the mind, soul, or spirit will be affirming that this ‘something’ is not given to all men. While this is unbiblical, it would be affirming a back-door unconditional election.

All non-Calvinists are invited and encouraged to answer. We want to hear from you. Calvinists may also comment………..

108 Comments:

Blogger bluecollar said...

Wayne - Good stuff. This should get REAL interesting. No doubt I'll be at work when things start to get good. I'll be watching...

March 28, 2007 11:46 AM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

First of all, is this your question?:

Why did you respond to his wooing and drawing, and they did not?

I have an answer already on my blog:
here. Don't you get tired of asking the same questions? I get tired of doing the same reasoning over and over again and you don't accept it because it is not the answer you want to hear. Then again, we all do that, don't we?

I am so glad for my idea of the new sidebar series. I don't have to type so much now.

Second of all, I won't speak for the other non-Calvinists that I know, but I don't feel I have anything to boast about in salvation. If someone puts a plate of food in front of a starving person and he eats it, that is nothing to boast about! I also covered that and other aspects of /boasting here.

NOW, on to a different subject, Paul's question about boasting in 1 Cor. 4:7. He is not speaking of a boasting for saving faith. He is speaking of Christians who were boasting to eachother about spiritual gifts and who they were following and whatnot. You have ripped that verse out of context to apply it to boasting about salvation or saving faith. Shame shame ...

meow

March 28, 2007 1:01 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Rose,
Thanks, but you didn't answer the question..... Here is the question which is in large print and in italics:
What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

March 28, 2007 4:04 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Rose,
Sentence two in the verse is what the focus is on, and I think while it is talking about spiritual gifts, the principle applies to all the talents, abilities, intelligence, personality, and in short everything we have. If you can show where you have something that you did not receive from God, then I will accept your rebuke of shame. Otherwise, this rebuke was not deserved.

Please stay focused and answer the primary question that I have in large print in the post and in bold in the comment before this one.

March 28, 2007 4:35 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The best way to answer your question is to refer to the Scriptures, which speak to these issues clearly.

First, recognize that God wants all people to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4) and does not wish that anyone should perish but that all should reach repentance. (2 Peter 3:9).

Faith is the aptitude by which anyone comes to Christ, to use your parlance. Faith is a gift from God (Eph. 2:8) and is given in measure by God to each person (Rom. 12:3). Indeed, Jesus is the true light that enlightens everyone (John 1:9).

Faith given, however, must be exercised. This is true because without faith it is impossible to please God, and is exercised by diligently seeking God. (Heb. 11:6). That was how people come to a saving knowledge of God in the Old Testament (Gen. 15:6 and Heb. 11:8-10) and how people come to a saving knowledge of Christ in the New Testament. (John 3:16-19).

Although God desires that all people be saved, not all will. His grace appears and brings salvation for all people (Titus 2:11), but only those who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved (Rom. 10:13).

God grants choice to people, who are made in His image. (Joshua 24:15, Gen. 1:26). For this reason, people are free to disobey the will of God. (Matt. 23:37). Thus, although God desires all to be saved and provides faith and salvation for all in Christ, who died for all (2 Cor. 5:15), only those who believe (i.e., have faith in) Christ will be saved. (Acts 16:31.

Hope this helps.

March 28, 2007 6:40 PM

 
Anonymous Allen said...

Anonymous is me Allen, must have clicked Anonymous instead of Other.

March 28, 2007 6:42 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Allen,
Thanks for the comment. You gave a lot of Scripture on your view of human free will making the deciding decision in salvation by as you said, "calling on the name of the Lord." But, you did not answer the following question that this post posed:
What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

IOW what faculty did you use (mind, soul, spirit) to will and decide to call on the name of the Lord? Once that is answered, did you receive it (mind or whatever) from God?

March 28, 2007 10:15 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Wayne, I will be away all day Thursday. My dad and all - doctor appointments, (hospital?). Please all pray. He is declining fast.

March 29, 2007 5:55 AM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

I did answer that in my sidebar article: (Maybe you never read it or forgot about it) What is faith part 2:

Without God’s enabling, His grace, we can do NOTHING! I cannot walk to the mailbox if God decides He does not want to allow me. When it comes to seeing and embracing the truth from God about His wonderful plan of salvation, if He didn’t help me see it, I wouldn’t have seen it. He draws all men unto Himself now that He has been lifted up. (John 12:32) He draws ... and we must respond ... with a very personal thing called faith. Faith is not some mystical insight into truth. It is not some deep commitment to change or serve. It is not a work. It is not an effort. It is very simple – it is when a person hears the truth, is convinced about it, and believes. This is not done to us by God or for us by God, this is what God desires of us.

Also, as I said in a recent post,
I have a real problem with the statement "faith is a gift." [As I have said before], if one means that the capacity for faith is a gift just in the same sense that the capacity for taking a breath is a gift ... then ... no problem. Everything we do or think is only allowable as a gift from God.

So Jazzycat, non-Calvinists are not boasting. Give it up.

March 29, 2007 8:27 AM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Hey! You guys have a link to an article denying the Reformed doctrine of the imputation of Christ's active righteousness!

You are more Dispensational than you admit.

March 29, 2007 11:12 AM

 
Anonymous Allen said...

Yes, I did answer your question but obviously not the answer you seem to want but it is the only Biblical answer as far as I know.


"Faith is the aptitude by which anyone comes to Christ, to use your parlance. Faith is a gift from God (Eph. 2:8) and is given in measure by God to each person (Rom. 12:3). Indeed, Jesus is the true light that enlightens everyone (John 1:9)."

Bluecollar, sorry to hear about your father. Prayers sent on your behalf.

Yes Rose, faith is a gift in the same way that our next breath or the next beat of our heart is a gift.

March 29, 2007 11:28 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Mark,
I will contiue to pray for your dad.
Wayne

March 29, 2007 3:42 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Rose,
Have you read this post? I am not going to allow you to misstate the main point. This post is not about boasting or faith being a gift. Boasting does not appear once in this post other than in the verse I chose to illustrate my point about everything we have being from God!

You said…. When it comes to seeing and embracing the truth from God about His wonderful plan of salvation, if He didn’t help me see it, I wouldn’t have seen it..

From this statement I conclude that you needed God’s help (drawing & wooing) but that you, through your own will, “saw it” and came to faith in Christ. Sooooo here is the question. Be it your mind, brain, spirit, will or whatever you used to “see it”……. Did you receive that faculty from God? (Not the actual faith, but the instrument (mind, brain, whatever) you used to come to the conclusion to believe.) Did Rose Cole use her God given mind, spirit, or soul to respond to God’s drawing or did she use something she did not receive from God?

I don’t know why I have yet to get a non-Calvinist to answer that question. Please be the first. You will still be a non-Calvinist with either a yes or a no.

March 29, 2007 4:31 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Matthew,
What article? I am all ears.
Wayne

March 29, 2007 4:32 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Allen,
Thanks, I do appreciate your participation.

If faith is given to each person then everyone would be saved. Since we know eveyone is not saved, then faith must not be given to every person.

Would you care to reload and try again. My comment to Rose just above this one may help you with the question.

Wayne

March 29, 2007 4:38 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Matthew,
In your decision to come to faith in Christ, did you use a god given attribute (mind, soul, spirit)?
Wayne

March 29, 2007 4:40 PM

 
Blogger Gojira said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

March 29, 2007 4:58 PM

 
Blogger Gojira said...

Hi Rose,

If I could, I'd like to ask you two questions.

You write:
"Without God’s enabling, His grace, we can do NOTHING!"

So my queston is: When God "enables" someone, does that enablement guarentee a perfect result? That is, will that person in fact believe? Asked another way, when God enables someone, is that person still in a position to reject that salvation?

Second question:

Will you please explain what you mean by "enable"?

You can answer them in any order, that is, if you feel like answering them or have time to answer them.

Thanks.

March 29, 2007 5:10 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

I referred to the link entitled 'NCT on imputed righteousness.'

Sorry to switch subject without being asked.

March 29, 2007 5:36 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

By the way, while I was in Japan for the last two months, living with four cats totally changed my attitude to the creatures. I am amazed to find I have become a cat lover.

March 29, 2007 5:37 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

For now, just expounding on one of the referenced texts:

2 Peter 3:9 - The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

Who is the 'you' that God is patient toward, not wishing for any to perish? Any of who? All of who? Any and all of 'you.' Again, who is 'you?'

Let's look in verse 8 -

But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day.

Who is the 'you' and the 'any' and 'all?' That would be the "beloved." He's talking to the beloved. (also referenced in vs 1, 14,17) So who are the beloved?

2 Pet 1:1 tells us.

To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:

Believers. The beloved are believers. Peter's audience is believers. The 'you,' 'any' and 'all' in vs 8 are the belivers.

In verses 8 & 9, Peter is telling believers that the seeming delay of Christ's return is because God does not view time the way we do, and is therefore not slack as we may think of slack; and He's allowing for more time for the not-yet-converted among them to be saved. (i.e. those who were chosen before the foundation of the world. i.e. 2 Thess 2:1 - But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. AND/OR Eph 1:4, 2 Tim 2:10 or a number of other texts)


Allen, I appreciate that you've come in here and answered. I just think we need to be careful in asserting emphatic statements, followed by a one or two verse citation - as if it's 'case closed.' Context and the whole counsel of Scripture has to be considered. What does the preponderance of Scripture reveal? You know....

March 29, 2007 6:18 PM

 
Anonymous Allen said...

The mechanical aspect of what happens when one is saved in explained in Romans 10:10: "For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved."

Thus, if you are concerned that the "aptitude" question was left unanswered, the Scriptures are clear that belief (faith) is exercised with the heart and is manifested by a confession with the mouth.

The quality of the responses to my initial post again clarify for me what never fails to be true, but is always surprising to me. The Calvinist is not nearly as interested in what the Scriptures actually say as he is with his own philosophical speculations about God and his personal implementation of logic. Thus, although the Bible actually tells us that faith is given to every each person (Rom. 12:3) and that, despite that reality, not everyone is saved (Matt. 7:21), these truths are rejected by Jazzycat because they don't fit his philosophy of God. Jazzycat is confident when he says:
"if faith is given to each person then everyone would be saved. Since we know eveyone is not saved, then faith must not be given to every person." However, what is glaringly missing from his conclusion is any Scripture. He does not cite to any Scripture to support his position, and probably doesn't think he needs to do so. This response is a typical Calvinist retort which may superficially sound impressive but is utterly devoid of any Scriptural foundation. Generally, Calvinists rely on half-truths and "logical" reasoning which is only very loosely and indirectly based on Scripture. When faced with Scripture that obviously overturns his philosophy (to which the Calvinist has a pre-biblical commitment), the Calvinist will retreat to such statements.

The second way Calvinist often address problems with their system is typified by Gayla's efforts to explain away 2 Peter 3:9. She concludes that Peter is only addressing the "elect" (as that term is understood by Calvinists) and thus reduces Peters words to the following: God wishes for the elect to be saved. Here, the flaws of Calvinism are again revealed: the obvious import of the statement is overturned by interpretive foot-work which reduces the biblical statement to a tautology. In other words, the verse states something that is true, but there was no reason for having said it. The statement "God wishes the elect to be saved" is tautologically redundant because that is already true, if you accept Calvinism, by virture of the Calvinist definition of what it means to be elect.

This is nothing new. It is what Calvinists have to do with scores of Scripture passages that don't fit their philosophy.

Finally, let me also express my disappointment with the tone of these responses. It would have been refreshing to find some Calvinists interested in actually debating positions, rather than with name-calling and fighting. It is obvious, however, that honest discussion is not what is desired here. That, regretably, is also not surprising.

I will leave you with yourselves.

March 29, 2007 7:53 PM

 
Blogger Gojira said...

Allen,

I will gladly debate this with you, and if you notice, I haven't called anyone a name.

Would that be something you are interested in?

March 29, 2007 8:08 PM

 
Anonymous Betsy said...

For anyone whose interested Peter Lumpkins has a similarly themed post "Rock and Rogue"

http://www.peterlumpkins.typepad.com/
Peter has a very nice blog where both Cals and nonCals are able to discuss differences while still showing respect to brothers and sisters in Christ.

I am sorry to say but I can certainly see Allen's point. Why bother asking for a nonCals opinion only to make statements such as "would you care to reload and try again" and "we need to be careful making emphatic statements" than making an emphatic statement "what does a preponderance of scripture say? You know.." You all have obviously already made up your minds and seem to be looking for some sort of way to amuse yourselves by beating up on nonCals - not very Christ-like in my opinion.

March 29, 2007 8:18 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Allen, thanks for your prayers!

You say," It would have been refreshing to find some Calvinists interested in actually debating positions, rather than with name-calling and fighting."

Where was the name calling? Where was the fighting? There is no such thing going on here. Wayne and Gayla as well as Doug are just trying to have people address the heart of Wayne's pointed and well reasoned question. Please come back. You are more than welcome here, friend!

Matthew, yes, I have been wrestling with the position on imputed righteousness. Is Christ's righteousness ours because of His work on the cross and our place in Him, or was His Active Obedience put to our account?

I know that if this were a widely read blog that I'd be in a lot of trouble right now. I follow the Bible, not traditions; and definitely not Darbyism.

March 29, 2007 8:35 PM

 
Blogger Gojira said...

Hi Mark,

I was about to say, Where did anyone call anyone else a name, or fight.

Will keep you and your dad in my heart and prayers.

March 29, 2007 8:46 PM

 
Anonymous Betsy said...

bluecollar, I can't speak for Allen, but I can tell you what I thought reading through this thread. Jazzycat's "Would you like to reload" response seemed to imply that Allen's answer was simply stupid, the fact that he didn't even bother to respond to Allen's answer only implied further that Allen's response was so stupid it wasn't worth the effort of responding.

Gayla's response

"just think we need to be careful in asserting emphatic statements, followed by a one or two verse citation - as if it's 'case closed.' Context and the whole counsel of Scripture has to be considered. What does the preponderance of Scripture reveal? You know....:
...when she herself is guilty of making emphatic statements as if 'case closed' would imply that Allen obviously knows nothing about scripture interpretation when if she has been at this for any length of time she knows very well that her interpretation of 2 Pet 3:9 is not a universally accepted interpretation. But it is the Calvinist interpretation. I thought the purpose for this "question for non-Calvinist" perhaps was to gain an understanding and open up dialogue, but clearly the intent was to somehow show how much smarter Calvinist are by making emphatic statements and closing the case. Is there really anymore need for discussion since you all have it all figured out?

March 29, 2007 9:20 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Allen, Rose, and all,
The purpose of this post was focused on what human beings have received that is not from God. I asked specifically for non-Calvinists to respond to a question that is in italics and large print. To date no non-Calvinist has answered.

My thesis is that everything human beings have comes from God. Therefore, even if one believes he came to saving faith by way of his mind and free will, he still has to point to God as the source of that decision. Furthermore, since some men do not come to saving faith, then the mind and will that God gave them was not sufficient to bring them to saving faith. This would quite simply be a form of unconditional election. One God given mind and will comes to faith, and another God given mind and will does not come to faith. Either everything that a human has physically, mentally, and spiritually comes from God or it doesn’t. I say it does. If someone wants to present a argument that their free will decisions come from a source that they did not receive from God, then I hope they will respond.

Wayne

March 29, 2007 9:22 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Uhhh, JazzyCat? You just totally proved the point that Allen made here:

"However, what is glaringly missing from his conclusion is any Scripture. He does not cite to any Scripture to support his position, and probably doesn't think he needs to do so. This response is a typical Calvinist retort which may superficially sound impressive but is utterly devoid of any Scriptural foundation. Generally, Calvinists rely on half-truths and "logical" reasoning which is only very loosely and indirectly based on Scripture. When faced with Scripture that obviously overturns his philosophy (to which the Calvinist has a pre-biblical commitment), the Calvinist will retreat to such statements."


And saying no nonCalvinist has answered when a couple have emphatically stated that they did answer is argumentative. Maybe Gayla can caution you about those emphatic case closed statements?

March 29, 2007 9:41 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Betsy - Welcome!

People on both sides of this debate come to the table convinced that their position is the more correct rather than the other. That is reality. If someone defends their stand with vigor is that wrong? I've seen this debate get real ugly before on blogs hosted by non-Cals. It happens. People feel strongly about their position, having arrived at their position after much prayerful study. We can't take a Post Modern attitude here. This debate has gone on for centuries with condemnations and all sorts of real ugliness. I've seen many personalities in the past clash here, i.e, e.g Whitefield and Wesley, or Toplady and, again, Wesley. I've seen the "Road to Rome" accusation fly from both sides.

Again, I have not seen ANYTHING wrong happen here.

Douglas - Thanks for your prayers, brother.

March 29, 2007 9:43 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Anon - What are your thoughts on Romans 9:6-33?

In answering the above please keep in mind that many Christians are completely outside the Dispensational hermeneutic. Answering from that system will not satisfy me.

March 29, 2007 9:54 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

Allen, you've made a number of serious charges which you need to substantiate:

"The Calvinist is not nearly as interested in what the Scriptures actually say as he is with his own philosophical speculations about God and his personal implementation of logic."

If you come back, would you mind pointing out for me where, in my response, I imposed my own philosphoical speculations? Logic "which is only very loosely and indirectly based on Scripture."? "Half truth?" Where am I "utterly devoid of any Scriptural foundation."

Or, is it possible that we simply do not agree on what the passage says?

"Finally, let me also express my disappointment with the tone of these responses. It would have been refreshing to find some Calvinists interested in actually debating positions, rather than with name-calling and fighting."

I'm sorry you're disappointed in the tone; I don't think any of us strives to be mean-spirited. Since you've charged me (us) with name-calling and fighting, would you mind citing some examples? I didn't see this.

Betsy: "Why bother asking for a nonCals opinion only to make statements such as... we need to be careful making emphatic statements" than making an emphatic statement "what does a preponderance of scripture say? You know.." You all have obviously already made up your minds and seem to be looking for some sort of way to amuse yourselves by beating up on nonCals - not very Christ-like in my opinion.

Betsy, I'm sorry that you feel as though I'm not being Christ-like, because I certainly strive to be so. Sadly, I sometimes miss the mark.

I do seek to be quoted and understood correctly, though - If you'll notice, my 'emphatic statement' was not a statement of fact, but rather an admonition directed at all concerned, wherein I said "we"...followed by a one or two verse citation - as if it's 'case closed.'" I think we could all agree that it takes more than one or two verses to make a doctrine.

You charge me with other emphatic statement - What does the preponderance of Scripture say? However, this was not a statement, but rather a question. And the 'you know' at the end was actually just an expression, as in 'ya know?' (I probably should have omitted that)

March 29, 2007 9:55 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

...when she herself is guilty of making emphatic statements as if 'case closed' would imply that Allen obviously knows nothing about scripture interpretation when if she has been at this for any length of time she knows very well that her interpretation of 2 Pet 3:9 is not a universally accepted interpretation. But it is the Calvinist interpretation.

Actually, Betsy, that is a good point, and I stand corrected. I certainly did not mean to imply that Allen knew nothing about Scripture interpretation.

Again, just to be clear, though - Betsy, to date, I've not read a thing by John Calvin, so I really, really don't know what a 'Calvinist interpretation' is. I truly don't. In my initial embracing of the sovereignty of God, I was brought to my understanding of Scripture thru the Word of God, by the Spirit of God.

(I have since read some other books, but I really don't know anything about John Calvin)

March 29, 2007 10:04 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

"Maybe Gayla can caution you about those emphatic case closed statements?"

Anon, in your opinion, could this possibly be considered a provocative or caustic statement?

To me it is, and doesn't seem to be very productive.

Sorry, Wayne. I'll not get off the subject anymore.

March 29, 2007 10:13 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bluecollar, you're funny! LOL!

"""Anon - What are your thoughts on Romans 9:6-33?

In answering the above please keep in mind that many Christians are completely outside the Dispensational hermeneutic. Answering from that system will not satisfy me.""""


Since many Christians are completely inside the Dispensational hermeneutic, only an anwer from that system will satisfy me.

And Gayla you may want to reread Allen's response to you - he addressed comments to Jazzycat which Jazzycat later went on to totally show the truth to Allen's statements about him and then he made a response directed at you regarding to your interpetation of 2 Pet 3:9. Of course I guess we could say Allen did make some pretty broad generalizations that you are taking personally.

Ya'll continue!

R

March 29, 2007 10:19 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gayla, yeah that pretty much descibes me. The productivity would come if you show yourself consistent in correcting others in this thread making all those emphatic case closed statements and not just the nonCals.


"Anon, in your opinion, could this possibly be considered a provocative or caustic statement?

To me it is, and doesn't seem to be very productive."


Guess you folks don't get alot of people holding you accountable for the words you're typing huh?

March 29, 2007 10:22 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Anonymous,
Would you care to answer the question posed in the post in italics and large print?

This is not a debate about Calvinism, but I will debate anyone that will answer the question I posed if they will answer the question....

No one has yet. Why do I need to support my view with Scripture when no one has bothered to refute it with Scripture or anything else.

Here it is again.....
My thesis is that everything human beings have comes from God. Therefore, even if one believes he came to saving faith by way of his mind and free will, he still has to point to God as the source of that decision. Furthermore, since some men do not come to saving faith, then the mind and will that God gave them was not sufficient to bring them to saving faith. This would quite simply be a form of unconditional election. One God given mind and will comes to faith, and another God given mind and will does not come to faith.

March 29, 2007 10:50 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness you are a comedian Jazzycat!
"""Why do I need to support my view with Scripture when no one has bothered to refute it with Scripture or anything else."""

The answer to this question would be because you're talking about God maybe?

And just because you stomp your feet and say no one has answered you question doesn't make it so.

How bout this - no one has given you the answer you seem to need so how bout you just post what you think the nonCal answer is then debate with yourself?

You people are cracking me up! Please keep it going!

March 29, 2007 11:18 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Annon...
Copy and paste the answer to the question, because I have not seen it answered in this thread.

Here is the question from the post....
What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

definition of aptitude: capability; ability; innate or acquired capacity for something; talent: She has a special aptitude for mathematics.

You do not need Scripture to ask a question.

A persons decision is not the answer. What a person used to make his decision, such as his brain, would be an answer.

Would you care to answer yourself or copy and paste the answer that you say has been given in this thread.

March 29, 2007 11:40 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Anon - Please identify yourself. You are quite good at squirming away from answering Wayne's direct question. Perhaps that is why you are happy to stay "Anon". I guess I would be embarrassed too if I was so evasive and unable to answer.

Also, so you admit that without falling back on that man made system (Dispensationalism), invented as recent as 1827, that you can not refute Calvinism w/o it? Dispyism was invented by a Calvinist (Darby), btw, and its first adherents were also Calvinist (Schofield, Chafer). They would roll over in their grave to see how their system has been hijacked by you of modern times in order to try to refute their Calvinism.

So, please answer how you look at Romans 9:6-33.

March 30, 2007 6:57 AM

 
Blogger Scribe said...

Hmm? Anonymity, just answer Jazzy's query apropos to the post. BTW, I fail to see any point to calling Jazzy a comedian--be courteous and engage your interlocutor on a more serious note.

How is your father doing , Blue...hope all is well?

March 30, 2007 7:02 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Scribe - It was kind of you to ask about my father. Thanks for doing so. He has been hospitalized due to low blood count. They must determine whether that is because of internal bleeding or low iron intake.

Again, thanks for asking.

March 30, 2007 7:15 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Also Anon, you seem happy to base your system on 1 Tim. 2:4 and 2 Pet. 3:9. But in so doing you do not also consider Romans 9. One's system, in order to be fully orbed, must consider ALL scriptural data. This is where non Calvinism fails. They are forced to explain away Romans 9.

March 30, 2007 7:58 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Also, Anon, what is your view on inherited corruption/guilt (original sin)? Romans 5:12-19; Eph.2:1-3?

March 30, 2007 8:07 AM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

Well,
I did answer you, Jazzy. You just need to look a little closer. Just as I breath because I have lungs and oxygen available, I believe because I have a "heart" or a "mind" (which everyone has) and the Word of God fell upon it just as oxygen fell upon my lungs. I think I actually gave you the answer you are looking for, but you are not recognizing that for some reason.

Oh, BTW, the reason I mentioned boasting in my first comment is because I thought you were implying in the post .... that somehow non-Cals hold to a form of pride because we received the truth and others with the same faculties did not.

Hi Bluecollar,
One's system, in order to be fully orbed, must consider ALL scriptural data. This is where non Calvinism fails. They are forced to explain away Romans 9.

Explain away? Can't both sides accuse the other of that?
I think even anonymous is a lover of truth. We are all trying to have an understanding that consider[s] ALL scriptural data. I mean, one could just as easily accuse the Limited Atonement adherents of explaining away the very basic Sunday school verse, John 3:16, not to mention others far less complicated than Romans 9!

I pray for your family and I don't want to argue with you. I just noticed your last three comments to anon, bam, bam, bam, and I was caused to reminisce. :~) to the good ole days ;~) We love ya, bluecollar!

March 30, 2007 8:58 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

blucollar, if you truly believe this based on what little evidence I've given in this thread than you really have no clue what a non Calvinist believes. No non Calvinist do not explain away or ignore Romans 9 nor do they base their entire system on 1 Tim 2:4 and 2 Pet 3:9, but keep proving all that Allen said about Calvinist true by your insulting attitude.


"""Also Anon, you seem happy to base your system on 1 Tim. 2:4 and 2 Pet. 3:9. But in so doing you do not also consider Romans 9. One's system, in order to be fully orbed, must consider ALL scriptural data. This is where non Calvinism fails. They are forced to explain away Romans 9."""

OK Jazzycat let me have mercy on whom I have mercy today - the answer to your question.

Let's say the appitude by which you come to God is your Spirit. Every single appitude that humans have is God given. I don't think anyone argues that. Where the debate comes in is that you reason everyone doesn't come to faith so God must not have handed appitude equally just like not everybody can play a concerto or throw a knuckleball. The problem with that is that whatever appitude anyone thinks it takes to exercise faith God made the field level - everybody has the exact same ability to come to Christ. He can do that because he's God.

Now have fun with that you people were amusing for a while but now you're just annoying. You should hang out with some of those other Cals who know a little more than you seem too. (yes I know that's insulting, but this whole thread was nothing but an attempt to get some nonCal to answer so Jazzycat could show himself somehow superior because he thinks he has some new idea when in realty he's only asking the same tired old question "why do some people beleive and others don't?")


Here's one place one of the several answers int this thread, but since your looking for some mind reader it doesn't fit for you somehow. Rose has answered you for a third time now and being good Christian that you are I'm sure you'll insult her by saying no she didn't I've just stumped you dumb ol nonCals! What great Christian buddys you have who'll go on the attack for you and not call you out on your condescending insulting behavior.

Allen said:

The mechanical aspect of what happens when one is saved in explained in Romans 10:10: "For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved."

Thus, if you are concerned that the "aptitude" question was left unanswered, the Scriptures are clear that belief (faith) is exercised with the heart and is manifested by a confession with the mouth.


R

March 30, 2007 9:33 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Rose,
Thanks for your latest. We are getting really close here. You said..... Just as I breath because I have lungs and oxygen available, I believe because I have a "heart" or a "mind" (which everyone has) and the Word of God fell upon it just as oxygen fell upon my lungs.

Did you receive that "heart" and "mind" from God? I am going out on a limb and assume that your answer is affirmative. Therefore, you used your God given “heart” and “mind” to believe when the word fell upon it. However, many people, who are similar in all respects to you, do not use their God given “hearts” and “minds” to believe. The conclusion is that God gave you and other believers a “heart” and “mind” that believed and he gives many people “hearts” and “minds” that do not believe. (Check out Romans 9:20-23). My point is that a free will human decision is made from faculties (heart & mind) that are God given. Since some exercise faith with their God given faculties and other do not, then God gives faculties to some that produces faith and does not give faith producing faculties to others. Just as God is the source of physical and mental talents, he is the source of hearts and minds which produce or do not produce faith.

This would be what I am calling a “back door” unconditional election. Without the particular God given “heart” and “mind” you received, you would be like the unbelievers that live in your town and perhaps next door. Any decision that springs from the God-given mind is dependent upon the intricacies of that mind.

THE BOTTOM LINE:
Salvation is from God and there is no human decision that cannot be traced to God. (Rom. 9:16 & John 1:13)

March 30, 2007 10:02 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Mark,
I will continue to pray for your dad and his soul.

March 30, 2007 10:03 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Anon....
Thank you. You finally answered the question.

Your reasoning really got off-track when you said......
The problem with that is that whatever appitude anyone thinks it takes to exercise faith God made the field level - everybody has the exact same ability to come to Christ.

1. Do you really believe the playing field is level?

2. If everybody has the exact same ability to come to Christ, then everybody would come to Christ. Exact abilities would produce exact results.

See my comment addressed to Rose a couple of comments prior to this one.

Please review Gal. 5:22 before you comment again. Thank you.

Wayne

March 30, 2007 10:25 AM

 
Blogger Scribe said...

Mark,

We pray your father's vitality will return to him. I pray that the Lord would bestow upon him the mercy that He bestowed upon king Hezekiah--that "15" more years would be added to him.

Hoping for the best in Christ Jesus,
Scribe

March 30, 2007 10:32 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Anon - running away so soon?

"Every one has the ability"? Chapter and verse please. Also, explain Romans 8:7

"Also, Anon, what is your view on inherited corruption/guilt (original sin)? Romans 5:12-19; Eph.2:1-3?

March 30, 2007 8:07 AM"

Also, dear "runaway" Anon, deal with my 8:07 comment.

I'm going to the hospital now. Don't know how much time I'll have here today.

March 30, 2007 10:41 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Scribe - I am honored. Thanks for your prayers!

Too all:
I believe that the basis of disagreement here is the matter of "totall depravity". Calvinists believe that man is under the sway of the devil (1 John 5:19) and is walking according to the spirit of the world. He is a child of wrath by nature (Eph. 2:1-3), and a slave to sin. (Romans 6). He loves his sin and hates the Light of Christ (John 3:19-20). He is hostile to God (Romans 8:7).

There simply is no scriptural support for prevenient grace, whereby mankind is lifted out of that above mentioned condition to a place of being able to decide for Christ.

March 30, 2007 11:46 AM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

Mark, I believe that another point of disagreement lies with the extent of the sovereignty of God.

Some believe that God is totally, completely sovereign over His creation, while others believe God is sovereign in all things except salvation.

March 30, 2007 12:55 PM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

while others believe God is sovereign in all things except salvation.

Gayla, that is a funny belief. I wonder who would hold that view? I don't know anyone. I wouldn't characterize my view that way. I would say that God has sovereignly made a creation that is able to *respond* to Him. If He is all-controlling, as you seem to suggest your view of sovereignty is, then there really is no true free response, no obedience, no reception of His love. I think He actually wants something from His creation, called a relationship. For God to be "sovereignly in control of salvation," ... must that mean that no one wants God ... so He has to *make* them want Him? Poor God ... from this view, He can't get any response from people unless He controls them. This is the picture that you present. Think about the word "drawing" as used in the John 12:32. Does it mean "controlling"?
Sovereignty doesn't mean all-controlling.

March 30, 2007 1:25 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

I agree Rose, it is a funny view to hold. I do run across people who hold it, though.

"He can't get any response from people unless He controls them. This is the picture that you present."

I submit that you might possibly misunderstand my view if you see this as the picture I present. That, or I've not articulated myself well enough to be understood.

March 30, 2007 2:04 PM

 
Blogger Antonio said...

Some people have a knack for killing people, for torturing, for perversity, for evil.

Some people have skills for deception, for swindling, for unrighteousness.

Some people have an aptitude for devising evil.

Believing is the constitutional ability of men. We operate on that level every day.

Men and women were created in the image and likeness of God. We have His communicable attributes.

Men and women have the ability to believe.

This is much different then saying that God imposes His religion on a soul who wants nothing to do with Him.

March 30, 2007 5:47 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Antonio,
Would you care to answer the question posed in the post?

What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?

definition of aptitude: capability; ability; innate or acquired capacity for something; talent: She has a special aptitude for mathematics.

Nobody in the reformed camp asserts that God imposes His religion on a soul who wants nothing to do with Him.

Jesus in John 3:3-5 and John 6 gives the reformed view of salvation by God's grace.
Wayne

March 30, 2007 6:31 PM

 
Blogger Antonio said...

Wayne,

maybe you didn't see

but I answered.

You may not like the answer, or it may not fit lock and stock to your useless question.

Man has the constitutional ability to believe having been created in the likeness and image of God.

Now what problems do you have with my answer?

Antonio

March 30, 2007 7:53 PM

 
Blogger Antonio said...

Wayne:

also.

Calvinism says that all unregenerate people are rebellious to God and want nothing to do with Him.

God then imposes regeneration on them and faith. Things they wanted nothing to do with. He then put love for Him in their hearts, and makes them all have some degree of commitment to Him.

unregenerate: God haters

Gods imposition:

zap! regeneration, faith, and guaranteed sanctification

God has single handidly turned God haters into God lovers by forcing His worship on the elect.

March 30, 2007 7:56 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Antonio,
I will take your two answers together as an affirmation that you believe that EVERYTHING you used to come to faith in Christ came from God. Since many do not come to faith, it is obvious that you and other believers have a God given ability to simply (to use your terminology) believe that the many do not have.
Believers are equipped with something God given that unbelievers do not have. Person A’s God given brain produced faith and person B’s God given brain did not.

Perhaps you could clear up the following contradiction that makes your position hard to get a handle own:

Quote 1 from you from this thread…..
Men and women have the ability to believe.
Quote 2 from your blog…..
Would it violate His sovereignty to give man latitude and freedom to rebel from Him or respond to His wooing and drawing?

If men and women have the ability to believe, why does God need to woo and draw? If God wants men to come on their own with their own free will without forcing them, why does he woo and draw? If God has to woo and draw, then perhaps the ability to believe is not as strong as you assert.

On the Calvinist and Biblical doctrine of irresistible grace you said from an UOG thread…………
God pounded them on the head with His irresistible grace!

Why is wooing and drawing that may not succeed O.K., but irresistible grace that is 100% successful bad?
Does God pound people over the head with wooing and drawing when they already possess the ability to believe? Where does wooing and drawing cross the line and become grace with pounding on the head?

You said…..Calvinism says that all unregenerate people are rebellious to God and want nothing to do with Him.
Actually Paul said this first in Romans 3:9-18, Romans 8:7-8, Eph. 2:1-5 and Jesus said it in John 3:3.

You then said….God then imposes regeneration on them and faith. Things they wanted nothing to do with. He then put love for Him in their hearts, and makes them all have some degree of commitment to Him.
What you call imposing regeneration and faith the Bible calls giving grace. (John 1:12-13, John 3:3-8, Titus 3:5, 1 Peter 1:3, 2 Cor. 5:17, John 5:21, Eph. 2:1,5, Col. 2:13.)

You said…..zap! regeneration, faith, and guaranteed sanctification
I believe you hold that sanctification is not necessary and in fact a man can come to faith and a short time later become a life-long atheist and even mock God and still have eternal life without any possibility that his faith may have been false. I believe you have even denied there is such a thing as false faith except for a couple of exceptions. Therefore, I believe that sanctification that flows from God’s grace is not a bad thing and neither does the Bible. Rather than quote Scriptures on sanctification, I would say just read the New Testament.

You said…… God has single handidly turned God haters into God lovers by forcing His worship on the elect.
You are pretty close here (I’m surprised). Simply replace “forcing His” with “enabling the elect to worship Him” and end the sentence there.

Wayne

March 30, 2007 9:59 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Nobody has dealt with my comment here...

To all:
I believe that the basis of disagreement here is the matter of "totall depravity". Calvinists believe that man is under the sway of the devil (1 John 5:19) and is walking according to the spirit of the world. He is a child of wrath by nature (Eph. 2:1-3), and a slave to sin. (Romans 6). He loves his sin and hates the Light of Christ (John 3:19-20). He is hostile to God (Romans 8:7).

There simply is no scriptural support for prevenient grace, whereby mankind is lifted out of that above mentioned condition to a place of being able to decide for Christ.

March 30, 2007 11:46 AM

There simply is no acknowledgement of the Fall. Some of the comments I read here are outright Pelagian. Might as well throw regeneration out the window, and clip Ephesians 2:1-3, and Romans 3:9-23 right out of our Bibles. Come on now, people!

March 30, 2007 11:59 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

If God takes a once dead, blind, hostile sinner, pulls him from the path of destruction; opens his eyes; gives a new nature, with new affections; moves in and takes up residence, thereby imparting new life - eternal life -; bringing that person into a relationship with Him, would that not be a cause for rejoicing?

March 31, 2007 9:56 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Since non-Calvinists reject the Biblical teaching of God enabling faith by the irresistible grace of the Holy Spirit, please explain how your faith resulted apart from God given attributes.

Hmm, that question's not loaded at all. As any opinion which is divergent from yours is automatically assumed to be "unbiblical" (by virtue of yours assuming that characteristic exclusively), I hardly see what kind of meaningful response you expect. That is, if you have already decided that any opinion antithetical to yours is unbiblical simply by virture of being in opposition to your "biblical" one, you already have the answers you want.

Besides, my experience has been that while Calvinists are more than happy to argue about the nature of the will (which is hardly established in a philosophically meaningful way within this post), they are entirely reticent to discuss the necessary conclusion of their position in terms of the eternal nature of the divine. That is, if God is the only being within the universe that can be spoken of as possessing a will in a meaningful way (let's not chase the philosophically juvenile conception of "compatibalism"), then God is the only one who can be spoken of as being responsible for all things. Therefore, if God has--from all of eternity determined to damn sinners because of sin; and, given that all things come to pass by the holy and infallible will of God and in keeping with the good and holy pleasure of the divine; then one must necessarily conclude that not only is God responsible for the means and ends by which sinners are damned (i.e., sin), but moreover--and most scandously of all--God desires this very sin for all things which exist, exist because God wills them, and God cannot will that which is not in keeping with the ontology of the holy.

So then, in your need to ascribe all action, thought and will to the primal eternity of God, you have in effect made God not only responsible for sin, but moreover you have equated the very nature of sin with the holiness of God. Therefore, to suggest that God "hates" sin is either 1.) to lie, for how can God hate that which God desires and is essential with the will of God (by virtue of being primally located therein) or 2.) to admit that God, in fact, despises Godself in calling sin "hated of God".

You may balk at this, but I have yet to see a single Calvinistic rebuttal to this line of reasoning that 1.) does not devolve into blind recitation of Reformed creeds (which is meaningless on a philosophical level) or 2.) does not resort to name calling and character assassination in order to cover up the inability to deal perspicuously with the nature of the question.

I welcome your response.

April 01, 2007 6:09 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

E-D,

Yes reformed people believe that God ordained the existance of Satan.

We believe He ordained the Fall.

I'll explain:

Turn to Ephesians 2:6-7. You'll see the position Christians enter into when they come to Crist - heavenly places. You'll see that for all eternity Christians will be on display as memorials of His kindness and grace shown in Christ.

None of the above would have happened if not for the Fall.

God alone is the One Who defines what is good or what is evil; not punny human beings. He alone defines what is fair or not. He does not need to live up to our punny standards. He is God, Wholley other, dwelling in heaven. He has ordained the presence of Satan and sin. He could have stopped them both as he did with Abimeleck in Genesis. But, He did not. See Romans 9:14-24.

God has a purpose for evil and those who are: To show His wrath and to make His power known.

He has a purpose for His vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory:To make known the riches of His glory.

April 01, 2007 7:20 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

E.D.,
Your're right, I think I should have put "In my opinion" after the unbiblical comment. However, my intention was to make it clear that I do not endorse the "back door Calvinism" that I was presenting as the inevitable result of a sovereign God. I affirm the regular Calvinism of the TULIP.

Would you care to answer the question in this post?

Since Mark did an excellent job of answering the off-topic objections you posed, I will offer no more on it.

Wayne

April 01, 2007 9:28 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Yes reformed people believe that God ordained the existance of Satan.

Okay.

We believe He ordained the Fall.

I'll explain:

Turn to Ephesians 2:6-7. You'll see the position Christians enter into when they come to Crist - heavenly places. You'll see that for all eternity Christians will be on display as memorials of His kindness and grace shown in Christ.

None of the above would have happened if not for the Fall.


I see no philosophically compelling reason why individuals could not be "memorials of God's kindness and grace" without the ordination of that which is (supposedly) antithetical to the will and ontology of the divine. If God's grace is infinite, then it does not have to be so by qualification; that is, the existence or non-existence of evil, the fall--whatever--would matter not one whit to the valuation of the infinitude of God's grace. In fact, to argue that such is necessary in order that God's grace be revealed as fully robust is to introduce an curious and contradictory necessity upon the nature of God, a necessity external to the will of God whereby that which is natural to God might be shown to be what it is. However, if such necessity exists, then God is not the sovereign that you imagine God to be, for God must conform to this external necessity lest God's grace be shown insufficient or less than what it would be in other "circumstances."

God alone is the One Who defines what is good or what is evil; not punny human beings.

Yes. This is why I find it wholly inconceivable how you could distinguish between the good that God ordains and the evil that God ordains. After all, how can God ordain that which is contrary to the will of God? The brute fact of ordination requires that the object of ordination be consistent and essential with the will and nature of God. Therefore, if God has called something "evil" which God has ordained, either God is lying or God is evil. There is no way around it, for the how can that which is ordained by God be inconsistent with very God? Therein lies the fatal failure of Calvinism, one which I have yet to see a reasonable answer.

He alone defines what is fair or not. He does not need to live up to our punny standards. He is God, Wholley other, dwelling in heaven.

Then why do you insist on propositionally locating all that exists within the will of God? It is you who place the necessity of exhaustive ordination upon God. So in this sense, you are as guilty on this count as any of your Arminian detractors.

He has ordained the presence of Satan and sin. He could have stopped them both as he did with Abimeleck in Genesis. But, He did not. See Romans 9:14-24.

If God has ordained, from all of eternity, the existence of sin and evil; and, as all things which God has willed must be consistent and essential with the will and being of God; the only conclusion which one can reach (and that indelibly) in light of your statement here is that 1.) God is evil (because God cannot ordain that which is not in keeping with the pure and holy will of the divine) or 2.) God is only feigning in calling "evil" evil. There are no other consistent and reasonable conclusions, given your starting premises.

God has a purpose for evil and those who are: To show His wrath and to make His power known.

He has a purpose for His vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory:To make known the riches of His glory.


If evil is eternally part of the ordaining will of God; and if all that God will must necessarily be essential and consistent with the nature of God; you have effectively concluded that God is evil, or entirely neurotic.

If you disagree, please explain how God can ordain and will that which is antithetical to the will of God, given that God's will is necessarily essential with the nature of God.

April 01, 2007 9:50 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Would you care to answer the question in this post?

I don't see that there's a question to answer. In order to begin answering it, one must establish what the nature of God's will is--it is unreasonable to expect someone who rejects Calvinism to try to answer a question based upon the categories of Calvinistic determinism--such would be an entirely lost battle, for to accept the beginning suppositions is to capitulate the inevitable conclusions.

However, as I reject the nature and boundaries of Calvinism's conception of the will of God, I do not see that this is a question that can be directly answered until preliminary questions of the nature of God's will have been perspicuously established.

Such is what I have attempted to begin in my previous comment.

April 01, 2007 9:54 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

also.

Calvinism says that all unregenerate people are rebellious to God and want nothing to do with Him.

God then imposes regeneration on them and faith. Things they wanted nothing to do with. He then put love for Him in their hearts, and makes them all have some degree of commitment to Him.

unregenerate: God haters

Gods imposition:

zap! regeneration, faith, and guaranteed sanctification

God has single handidly turned God haters into God lovers by forcing His worship on the elect.


Actually, you are forgetting that from all of eternity, God was also pleased to create them to hate God, only so that God might have a change of mind and later regenerate them. Although, this change of mind was inevitably not a "change," for God also determined from eternity that although God had ordained them to hate God, God would also ordain them to be saved.

This was all supposedly done to show the "glory" of God. But show it to whom? As God is pulling all the strings, so to speak, it is only God who is witnessing anything.

Therefore, to speak of the reconciliation of the elect is actually quite a misnomer; the only reconciliation that occurs is the final resolution of an eternal vacillation within the will and very ontology of God...the final overcoming of a quite severe neurosis.

April 01, 2007 9:59 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

E-D,

I see that you DID NOT interact with Romans 9:14-24.

No interaction with that verse means no more discussion.

April 01, 2007 10:21 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Paul's imaginary interlocutors in this passage have nothing to do with the issues I have raised.

The context of Paul's discussions in this passage have to do with questions of the propriety of Paul's claim that Gentiles can come to faith in Christ apart from initiation into the Jewish cultus of worship.

The Jews were scandalized by Paul's message, for they thought that they enjoyed a measure of exclusivity over all other peoples. Hence the cries of "injustice"--after all, they have "done" everything by divine prescription; should this not be sufficient for justification with God? The Gentiles, on the other hand, have done nothing prescribed by the law. How could God be just in reconciling them apart from the law?

But Paul cuts through this rhetoric, advocating that God is not unjust, for the means of justification was never the law, but faith (per his continuous conjuring of the example of Abraham).

There. I have interacted with it. But this does not materially change my previously raised issues, as questions of "fairness" and "propriety" has little to nothing to do with the force of my arguments.

So then, I still await your interaction with my questions.

April 02, 2007 8:11 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

"Paul's imaginary interlocutors in this passage have nothing to do with the issues I have raised."

Oh, they most certainly do. You show signs of being a Dualist. Does evil exist outside the will of God? Does not God have complete control over it, using it to bring about His intended ends?

"Have you considered Job?" was God's question to Satan, and mine to you? Job NEVER knew the why's of his situation. God never explained it to him. Job just had to cover his mouth. God is sovereign.

E-D Who ultimately orchestrated the events the befell Job... The sores, worms in those sores, the loss of family, wealth, and joy of living?

We also see that angels, good and bad, are witnessing redemptive history: Eph. 3:10; 1 Peter 1:12; 1 Cor. 11:10.

Wouldn't you say that you and I are operating on a different paradigm - You on unbiblical philosophy, me on the Bible?

April 02, 2007 10:30 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Oh, they most certainly do. You show signs of being a Dualist.

LoL, have you been talking to gojira? As I entirely deny the ontological existence of sin, there is no sense in which a label of Manicheanism could be accurately applied to me.

Does evil exist outside the will of God? Does not God have complete control over it, using it to bring about His intended ends?


Evil does not attain to ontological existence as it is only meaningful to speak of evil as the privation of good. Therefore, evil neither exists within or outside of the will of God; moreover, as it lacks any ontological existence whereby it might be an object of sovereignty, it is not proper to speak of God having "control" over it.

"Have you considered Job?" was God's question to Satan, and mine to you? Job NEVER knew the why's of his situation. God never explained it to him. Job just had to cover his mouth. God is sovereign.

My question is not whether or not God is sovereign. My question concerns what the nature of this sovereignty is.

E-D Who ultimately orchestrated the events the befell Job... The sores, worms in those sores, the loss of family, wealth, and joy of living?

I hardly see what this question has to do with the issues raised in my comments. Even if one is to ascribe the "orchestration" of the tragedies of Job's life to the divine will of God, what is not answered in this story that is of material difference to this conversation is the relationship of Job's response to God's supposedly infallibly actuating will. In fact, it would appear that Job's story exactly proves my criticism of Calvinism, for why would God "test" Job if God had immutably ordained Job's response? Again, we see the neurosis of Calvinistic thought, for one would have to argue that God is running a "test" on that which God had already infallibly ordained to attain in reality. Is God not sure of God's ordained purpose? And if God is, what is the purpose of running through this charade? As Job's response will programmatically follow from the location of the same within the eternal will of God, the only one whose God's sovereignty is proved to is Godself. Apparently God needed to reassure Godself of this fact, or else the test is yet another manifestation of a severe neurosis plaguing the divine mind.

We also see that angels, good and bad, are witnessing redemptive history: Eph. 3:10; 1 Peter 1:12; 1 Cor. 11:10.

Not if Calvinistic cosmological principals are assumed. All of these occassions of "witness" must inevitably be located in the primal actuating will of God. To "witness" something would seem to be predicated upon the possibility of the non-witnessing of the same event attaining reality. However, as any such scenario is utterly impossible in the hegemony of God's will, such talk of "witness" is nothing but a frail and thin veneer which covers little of meaningful value.

Wouldn't you say that you and I are operating on a different paradigm - You on unbiblical philosophy, me on the Bible?

You think yours is a biblical philosophy, but of course I would disagree, and visa-versa. What is the criterion(ia) for determining who is right?

April 02, 2007 12:59 PM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Jazzy: "What aptitude did you use to come to faith in Jesus Christ that you did not receive from God?"

There is nothing that any of us has received that has not come from God, but that does not mean that we are unconditionally elected. (Acts 17:28)

Jazzy: "When God "enables" someone, does that enablement guarentee a perfect result? That is, will that person in fact believe?"

No, not necessarily.

Jazzy: "Asked another way, when God enables someone, is that person still in a position to reject that salvation?"

Yes. (Matthew 4)

Jazzy: "Will you please explain what you mean by "enable"?"

Speaking for myself, all men left to themselves would never seek God. (Psalm 14:1-3; Romans 3:10-11) But God has put his Spirit upon the earth so that all men CAN seek Him. (Romans 1) Jesus lights every man. (John 1:9) He puts us in places where we might seek Him. He tries to get our attention in many ways. (Acts 17:26-27) These are all forms of grace.

It simply depends upon how we've cultivated our hearts. Have we filled them with evil (as God sees evil) or with good? I believe we all make choices and those choices can (but not always) lead to further bad choices or maybe someone will come into our lives and show us a better way and we can choose to go that better way. I think only God knows a person's heart for sure and only He knows the paths a person takes to cultivate a heart that is so hardened to the gospel or to the grace that surrounds him and vice versa.

I respectfully disagree with your assertion that because God has given us all that we are is a back door to undconditional election. While God has gifted us with life and talents, he's given us a freewill to do with those talents what we will.

I hope I have answered your questions. And I welcome any clarification you may need.

April 03, 2007 12:46 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

E-D - Yes I've seen some of your comments on Doug's blog.

I'm not post modern so I will not hesitate to say this: I am right, and you are wrong!

It is clear that since you neither acknowledge sin nor (as you said last Summer on Jazzy's blog) the fact that God the Father was behind the punches and scourgings that Christ received and the crucifiction, that you do not know God.

My answer is simple: REPENT! Turn from your philosophy! Turn to the Bible only. There you will discover God's hatred of sin. There you will discover that you are a guilty sinner and will be damned to the Lake of Fire if you do not flee to that One Who is able to save such a sinner as you. That One's name is Jesus Christ, the very Son of God.

April 03, 2007 7:36 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

blue--

I'm not post modern so I will not hesitate to say this: I am right, and you are wrong!

How convenient that your presuppositions about truth are self-justified.

It is clear that since you neither acknowledge sin

Not true. I acknowledge sin, but simply deny that it attains ontological existence. I have consistently affirmed that sin is known as the privation of good, meaningful only in reference to the dissolution of good and without existence in isolation from the same.

nor (as you said last Summer on Jazzy's blog) the fact that God the Father was behind the punches and scourgings that Christ received and the crucifiction, that you do not know God.

Well, you have a lot more than me to argue with on this point, like the entire history of Christian theological thought. The divine sado-masochism which you so vehemently affirm is only a quite recent abberation in Christian theological thinking.

My answer is simple: REPENT! Turn from your philosophy! Turn to the Bible only. There you will discover God's hatred of sin. There you will discover that you are a guilty sinner and will be damned to the Lake of Fire if you do not flee to that One Who is able to save such a sinner as you. That One's name is Jesus Christ, the very Son of God.

LoL, since your final response to the serious and important issues that I have raised is nothing more than a petty personal attack, it is apparent that you have conceded the argument.

April 03, 2007 8:30 AM

 
Blogger Deviant Monk said...

blue collar:

I'm not post modern so I will not hesitate to say this: I am right, and you are wrong!

Given that you have implored ED to turn from philosophy and to the bible alone, this statement of yours is hardly justified.

You are essentially saying that ED should subject himself to your interpretation of the scriptures. (as mediated through your philosophical determinism) You have then outlined the things he will find there. Tell me, how can you say, in an intellectually honest way, that you are wanting him to turn to the scriptures alone and not to your philosophical system's understanding of them?

It is clear that since you neither acknowledge sin

it is clear you have completely misconstrued ED's statements concerning sin.

Notwithstanding that, the idea of sin as privation of good is as orthodox an understanding of theodicy as any. In fact, historically speaking, the idea of sin as privation is by far the most well attested.

the fact that God the Father was behind the punches and scourgings that Christ received and the crucifiction, that you do not know God.

Allow me to take this to its logical conclusion. So, someone rejects the idea that God the Father made Christ the Trinity's whipping boy, rejects the idea that God was behind and the actualizer of the sin that brought about Jesus' death, then one doesn't know God. Ok. So, logically, if one doesn't believe that God is the actualizer of every rape of little girls by their fathers, the brutal beatings of wives by their husbands, the vicious murders of babies, etc., then one doesn't know God.

I sure hope I don't know that God.

April 03, 2007 9:40 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

E-D - "The divine sado-masochism which you so vehemently affirm is only a quite recent abberation in Christian theological thinking."

Oh, really!

Well, how about when Philip encountered the Ethiopian Eunuch in Acts 8? He used Isaiah 53 as his presentation of Christ... ya know, THAT chapter that deals with God beating His Son for sin. Isaiah 53 is pretty clear here, or are you scared to look at that chapter and see what it actually says?

1 Peter 2:24 comes right out and says that He bore our sins in His own body on the cross.

April 03, 2007 10:06 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Deviant Monk - "Allow me to take this to its logical conclusion. So, someone rejects the idea that God the Father made Christ the Trinity's whipping boy, rejects the idea that God was behind and the actualizer of the sin that brought about Jesus' death, then one doesn't know God. Ok. So, logically, if one doesn't believe that God is the actualizer of every rape of little girls by their fathers, the brutal beatings of wives by their husbands, the vicious murders of babies, etc., then one doesn't know God."

I am going to challenge you to read Isaiah 53, then come back, and we'll talk.

April 03, 2007 10:09 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Well, how about when Philip encountered the Ethiopian Eunuch in Acts 8? He used Isaiah 53 as his presentation of Christ... ya know, THAT chapter that deals with God beating His Son for sin. Isaiah 53 is pretty clear here, or are you scared to look at that chapter and see what it actually says?

No, I have read Isaiah 53 many times. I see no reason why this necessitates a wholesale equation of the "suffering servant" with the relationship between Christ and God. Moreover, you have failed to take account of the fact that the writers of the NT at no place appeal to the verse you have quoted in theologizing about the nature of Christ's death on the cross (and with no strict correspondence of meaning that many modern hermeneutics impose upon the relationship of OT texts to the person and work of Christ).

Besides, you are failing to account for the meaningfulness of the "suffering" of the Isaiac servant in light of the Jewish cultus of sacrifice. The sacrificial system of the Hebrews did not proceed with the assumption that the sacrifice offered in the place of the sinner was somehow an appeasement of an angered deity (which is precisely what your view of atonement advocates). Rather, the death of the sacrifice in the place of the sinner was a representation and profound indentification of the sinner with the destructive and annihilating consequences of sin. If you wish to understand the Isaiac text, then, you must proceed through this lens, rather than your anachronistic, modernistic conceptions of atonement.

For Christ to be "crushed" by God is not for Christ to be the whipping boy of the Triune community; rather, in the Isaiac context, this would be referring to the profound identification of the sinful nation of Israel with the annihilating power of sin that is unleashed upon the suffering servant, not from the retributive hand of God, but rather from the hatred of humanity against God.

1 Peter 2:24 comes right out and says that He bore our sins in His own body on the cross.

So?

April 03, 2007 11:10 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

"1 Peter 2:24 comes right out and says that He bore our sins in His own body on the cross.

So?"

That one verse blows your whole system away!

Look, if you do not like taking Isaiah 53 for what it clearly teaches, but would rather force your own conclussions on it, then it's time for you to move on.

Christ was the object of His Father's fury. Note Christ's prayer in the Garden:"Not my will, but thine be done". His Soul was indeed made an offering for sin. And only those who put their trust in His finished work on the cross shall be saved.

You preach heresy. If you do not repent then you and those who follow your way of thinking will surely die in your sins.

April 03, 2007 12:01 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

That one verse blows your whole system away!

Since I am apparently lost and blind, perhaps you could explain how this is so.

Look, if you do not like taking Isaiah 53 for what it clearly teaches, but would rather force your own conclussions on it, then it's time for you to move on.

What it "clearly" teaches? You criticize me for supposedly "ignoring" this passage, yet when I perspicuously engage it, you balk about my forcing my own conclusions on it. Guess what, you have done the same!

How do you determine that you have special insight into what the text "clearly teaches?" Upon what criterion--besides that for which you damn me--do you make that determination?

Christ was the object of His Father's fury. Note Christ's prayer in the Garden:"Not my will, but thine be done". His Soul was indeed made an offering for sin. And only those who put their trust in His finished work on the cross shall be saved.

You are pefectly willing to advocate that Christ was the object of God's fury; however, even the text upon which you have based this argument will not lend itself to the extent of your conclusion.

You preach heresy.

Heresy? Perhaps you could cite the ecumenical councils or creeds of the ecumenical church of which I am askance. Given that you will not, inevitably, be able to do this, your accusation of heresy only belies your inability or unwillingness to question and critically engage with the philosophical presuppositions which clearly drive the conclusions which you hold out as objective truth.

April 03, 2007 12:17 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

" Perhaps you could cite the ecumenical councils or creeds of the ecumenical church of which I am askance."

I do not subscribe to ecumenical councils or creeds, only Evangelical councils and creeds, which,btw,hold Isaiah 53 as I do.

Repent or perish!

April 03, 2007 12:35 PM

 
Blogger Deviant Monk said...

I am going to challenge you to read Isaiah 53, then come back, and we'll talk.

Isaiah 53...ok. I've read it. Let's talk.

April 03, 2007 12:37 PM

 
Blogger Deviant Monk said...

I do not subscribe to ecumenical councils or creeds, only Evangelical councils and creeds, which,btw,hold Isaiah 53 as I do.



So you find it better to subscribe to councils and creeds (which ones are you referring to, anyway?) which represent, relatively speaking, an insignificant portion of christian history and thought rather than the ecumenical councils and creeds which all of christendom subscribes? So would the Nicene creed with its affirmations of Jesus' divinity be among the creeds to which you do not subscribe?


Repent or perish indeed.

April 03, 2007 12:47 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

"the Nicene creed with its affirmations of Jesus'"

Yes I subscribe to this creed.

Run your creeds by me one by one.

I must go to work now. See you tomorrow.

April 03, 2007 12:59 PM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

I do not subscribe to ecumenical councils or creeds, only Evangelical councils and creeds, which,btw,hold Isaiah 53 as I do.

Then according to historic, Christian orthodoxy, you are the one outside of the stream of Christian thought, not me...

Repent or perish!

That's a drive-by, right?

ROFL!

April 03, 2007 1:09 PM

 
Blogger Deviant Monk said...

Yes I subscribe to this creed.

Then I guess you subscribe to at least one ecumenical council and its creed.

Run your creeds by me one by one.

Since the discussion has centered around the ecumenical councils and their creeds, you could just as easily look them up in wikipedia or something without me having to write them all out.

Also, there is a difference between the decisions of councils and those being formulated into creeds. Really, the only two significant ones out the ecumencial councils are the Nicene (as revised at Constantinople) and the Chalcedonian definition.

You are the one who has said that the 'Evangelical' councils affirm your understanding of the atonement; thus, it would seem that the burden of proof would lie on you.

April 03, 2007 3:29 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Dawn,
You asked………
"Will you please explain what you mean by "enable"?"

A spiritually dead person must born again to even see the kingdom of God let alone enter it (John 3:3). That is what I mean by enable. God must intervene before we can respond in faith (Rom. 8:7, Eph. 2:4-5, John 6:65). God must take action and give birth to a spiritual corpse. All (100%) of those that God enables come (John 6:37, Rom. 8:29-30).

On your verses:
I don’t see Romans 1 saying God enables all men to seek him. It says that God in general revelation made his creation plain to men. Go to some of the many atheist blogs and see if you think they are seeking God. Acts 17:26-27 says that men should seek God and not that they can or do seek him. Again check out some atheist blogs. The Bible is full of calls for all men to respond to God. This is the external call and it used to draw men that have been enabled by regeneration to respond. John 3:16 for example gives this external call, but is silent on whether unregenerate men have the ability to respond. Romans 8:7-8 tells us that they can’t….. (For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.) Seeking God would please Him, but this verse says they can’t please Him; therefore, they can’t seek him.

Because the Bible calls all men to salvation, does not mean that all men have the ability apart from God to respond.

I appreciate your visit and from looking over your blog, I see that you take a lot of Godly stands. I encourage you in that.

Wayne

April 03, 2007 4:08 PM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

Wayne, thanks for citing Rom 8:7-8. I hadn't even thought of that one! Indeed it tells us that man is unable.

April 03, 2007 7:17 PM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Jazzy, I apologize. Part of my post should have been directed to Gojira. I inadvertently put your name before his/her quote.

But to answer your scripture verses. I do see Romans 1 as an implication of ability as God says He has shown us who He is and that we are without excuse. We see that not only has He revealed Himself and we DO see, but that because of this we are without excuse. How can one be without excuse unless one has the ability to respond to God's revelation?

Romans 2 also shows that we have ability to respond to God. We are born with the law written on our hearts. We are able to know right from wrong, but it doesn't mean we will always do the right thing. Why should our ability to want to be saved be any different? I don't believe it is. We are able to recognize that we need a Savior and are able to heed the call.

The implication in Act 17:26-27 says that we "should" seek God. If we "should", then we CAN, but it doesn't mean we WILL. It says that perhaps we "might" feel after Him and find Him because He is not far from us. "Might" implies an ability to do feel after the Lord. Nowhere does it say we CANNOT.

Jazzy: "The Bible is full of calls for all men to respond to God."

Right. And if God commands us to do something then we most certainly have the ability to do so or His call would be nonsensical. Atheists don't seek God because they can't, they don't because they won't.

Romans 8:7-8 "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God."

All this verse is saying is that on our own will or power we cannot submit to the law of God. We do not even understand this until after we're born again. All we know is that we're sinners who need a Savior. It it the very law that Paul speaks of here that convinces us that we need a Savior. The law is our schoolmaster. This is not speaking of inability to respond to the good news of Jesus Christ.

Jazzy: "Seeking God would please Him, but this verse says they can’t please Him; therefore, they can’t seek him."

This verse says that those who are not submitted to God cannot please Him. It doesn't say that a man cannot seek God, especially when the Lord is calling Him. I believe God calls us often. I know He called me often. I know that when I witness to someone He is calling them. His very creation calls mankind. Trials and tribulation call mankind. God uses many different forms of grace to call us to Him.

Jazzy: "I appreciate your visit and from looking over your blog, I see that you take a lot of Godly stands. I encourage you in that."

Thanks for the encouragment.

April 04, 2007 4:16 AM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Jazzy: "A spiritually dead person must born again to even see the kingdom of God let alone enter it (John 3:3). That is what I mean by enable. God must intervene before we can respond in faith (Rom. 8:7, Eph. 2:4-5, John 6:65). God must take action and give birth to a spiritual corpse. All (100%) of those that God enables come (John 6:37, Rom. 8:29-30)."

John 3:3 doesn't mean that we cannot understand that we need a Savior. Romans 1 & 2 show that we can indeed recognize the need for a Savior and respond to the call.

I agree that God must intervene before we can respond in faith and that is what grace does. It enables us to exercise our faith.

Rom. 8:7, Eph. 2:4-5, John 6:65 does not teach that we are unable to exercise our faith before we are born again. Once we exercise our faith and receive Jesus through grace (John 1:12-13; Ephesians 2:8) we are born again.

John 6:37 tells us that those who put their faith in Jesus are those that the Father gives to Jesus. (John 6:40,45)

April 04, 2007 4:33 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Deviant One - God the Father poured His wrath out on His sinless Son as He bore my sins on that cross. His fury and wrath were satisfied the moment Christ said "It is finished". The proof that God the Father had accepted His Son's sacrifice for my sins was that He raised His Son up 3 days later. Christ now SITS at the right hand of the Father, His sinbearing mission accomplished.

I am sorry if you do not believe this. It would mean that somebody that I interacted with on this blog will spend an eternity in the Lake of Fire. How I wish that would not happen.

April 04, 2007 7:56 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

I am sorry if you do not believe this. It would mean that somebody that I interacted with on this blog will spend an eternity in the Lake of Fire. How I wish that would not happen.

There is nothing within historic, Christian orthodoxy that requires the affirmation of a penal/retribution model of atonement such as you have offered. Therefore, for you to make this an issue of salvific ramifications is nothing but a bare-faced attempt to force your theological hegemonies on others by appealing to the fabricated importance of your viewpoint, a viewpoint that has absolutely no place of necessity within the orthodoxy of the historic church.

I would strongly suggest that you stop presuming to play the role of God in delineating the salvation of others in place of your inability to meaningfully engage with points of view that challenge your own.

Anyone can call someone else a heretic and yell at them to repent; however, your lack of critical interaction with other points of view (not to mention your own) is hardly compelling, and only confirms in the minds of your detractors the flimsy basis upon which your theological allegiances rest.

April 04, 2007 8:05 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Dawn,
All this verse is saying is that on our own will or power we cannot submit to the law of God. We do not even understand this until after we're born again.

Exactly this is the concept. Until God intervenes nothing happens.

God uses many different forms of grace to call us to Him.

Yes, and it is 100% effective. It is irresistible grace. (John 6:37, Rom. 8:29-30, John 3:3, Eph. 2:4-5) While we are still dead in sin, God made us alive.

Question: If man has the ability on his own, why do you and others keep mentioning God calling, drawing, and wooing? Seems to me that you realize it takes God to intervene, but erroneously believe he does it to everyone. The verses I gave above show that he doesn't. There are many more I could have given such as "My sheep know my voice." Not everyone, but my sheep.

Romans 1 is speaking of general revelation that people deny. That is why people still today deny creation. The law in our hearts is the sense of right and wrong that humans are born with and animals such as "Jazzy" for example has no concept of. As long as you believe the external call (John 3:16 & Acts 17) implies ability, I can see where you get your view. However, as a young person, you have time to consider if verses such as John 3:16 really support universal ability.

Wayne

April 04, 2007 9:56 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

ED and DM,
Do deny the atonement as the event that purchases eternal life for those that place their faith in Christ is to deny the authority and inerrancy of the New Testament. Do you affirm Sola scriptura? Liberal theologians (Jesus Seminar) reject much of Biblical revelation as myth. If this is your position then this debate futile.

However if you affirm Sola scriptura, then Mark is reporting to you the teaching of the New Testament and your problem is not with Mark, but with an unbelievable denial of what the Bible teaches about the Easter story.

Mark is to be commended for boldly proclaiming that truth to you. Many are offended by that truth. Please answer the question in sentence two. I didn’t mean to get involved here, so I will retreat and leave any further dialog to remain between you and Mark.

Wayne

April 04, 2007 10:32 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

"There is nothing within historic, Christian orthodoxy that requires the affirmation of a penal/retribution model of atonement such as you have offered."

You are a liar!

You are now banned from this blog!

April 04, 2007 10:57 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

"There is nothing within historic, Christian orthodoxy that requires the affirmation of a penal/retribution model of atonement such as you have offered."

Why am I a liar? Show me in the creeds of historic, ecumencial Christianity where penal conceptions of atonement are offered as dogmatically binding theological propositions.

You will not find them.

April 04, 2007 11:14 AM

 
Blogger Exist~Dissolve said...

Do deny the atonement as the event that purchases eternal life for those that place their faith in Christ is to deny the authority and inerrancy of the New Testament.

Purchases life from whom? As God is the giver of life, no "purchase" is necessary. Human beings must be saved from their entrenchment in sin, not from God. If God's anger is the problem in atonement that must be overcome, then the simplest way of doing so would be to simply get "over it."

To me, the only reasonable conclusion is to place the impetus of atonement where it actually is--on the need of human beings to be recreated and reconciled to God--rather than on a conception of God's anger needing to be sated.

Do you affirm Sola scriptura?

As this historic ecumenical church held to no such arbitrary standard, neither do I.

Liberal theologians (Jesus Seminar) reject much of Biblical revelation as myth. If this is your position then this debate futile.

Much of the OT contains mythological literature. The failure of the Jesus Seminar is that they have used modern historical criticism to suggest that the mythological is without meaning, which is certainly not the assumption under which the writers of portions of Scripture were working.

However if you affirm Sola scriptura, then Mark is reporting to you the teaching of the New Testament and your problem is not with Mark, but with an unbelievable denial of what the Bible teaches about the Easter story.

Well, if what we advocate is an "unbeleivable denial," you have effectively marginalized the majority of Christian history that has not held to such ideas of atonement. Your beef, then,would be with the tradition of historic orthodoxy, not me.

Mark is to be commended for boldly proclaiming that truth to you.

I hardly see how petty accusations and a nearly complete avoidance of meaningful and critical dialogue equates to "boldly proclaiming the truth." If he really believes what he says, let us see him defend it without resorting to childish name-calling and evaluations of salvific status to which neither of us have ultimate access.

April 04, 2007 11:42 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Do you affirm Sola scriptura?

"As this historic ecumenical church held to no such arbitrary standard, neither do I."

See now why you are permanently banned? The Bible alone is my source of information. It is my life. It is my light.

Too simplistic for you? Cool. I only hope you repent before it is too late. Please repent! I do not want to see you perish.

Please stay away from this blog. Your damnable heresy is not welcome here.

April 04, 2007 12:40 PM

 
Blogger Deviant Monk said...

Do deny the atonement as the event that purchases eternal life for those that place their faith in Christ is to deny the authority and inerrancy of the New Testament.

by this are you speaking of ransom theory?

ED pretty well elucidated upon what would be a similar response from me- salvation is about being reconciled to God. As has already been stated, the problem with humanity has been our separation from God which is effected through sin. Hence, the original consequence of the fall was that humanity was expelled from the garden, cut off from the life-sustaining relationship with God. If one is not united in the life-sustaining relationship with God, then death- the tendency towards non-being. the privation of life, so to speak- is inevitable.

The Incarnation is the remedy for this. Whereas Paul's theological construct shows that all of humanity shares in the separation from God due to humanity's fall, so humanity will share in the reconciliation accomplished by the second adam, Christ. The solution isn't just that we are freed from God's wrath but that we are reunited in relationship with the God who sustains life.

Do you affirm Sola scriptura?

I think we've talked about this before. My answer is of course no. Since the doctrine is completely absent within the thinking and doctrine of the church until the reformation, I find no reason to affirm it.

However if you affirm Sola scriptura, then Mark is reporting to you the teaching of the New Testament and your problem is not with Mark, but with an unbelievable denial of what the Bible teaches about the Easter story.

One can wholeheartedly affirm the resurrection without subscribing to sola scriptura.

Mark is to be commended for boldly proclaiming that truth to you.

The truth of the resurrection? ???

bluecollar- re:your dialogue with ed-

You are a liar!

I would be interested as well to have you offer some evidence from historic christian orthodoxy that could substantiate your groundless accusation.

Do you affirm Sola scriptura?

"As this historic ecumenical church held to no such arbitrary standard, neither do I."

See now why you are permanently banned? The Bible alone is my source of information. It is my life. It is my light.


If the bible alone is your source for 'information', then I am curious as to how you can subscribe, as you have previously said, to Evangelical creeds and councils. Aren't the scripture enough? Why would you bind you conscience to man-made doctrinal statements and affirmations?

Too simplistic for you? Cool. I only hope you repent before it is too late. Please repent! I do not want to see you perish.

That seems a lot more charitable than the God of Calvinism. Good for you.

Please stay away from this blog. Your damnable heresy is not welcome here.

You have made some fairly heavy accusations, without any evidence. Therefore, as a show of good faith in this discussion, it seems appropriate that you would

1. Show a council, creed, confession, etc., that condemns ED's conception of the atonement

2. Show that such a council/creed/confession issued an anathema against the heresy (to fulfill the requirement of 'damnable')

Unless you can do this or are willing to do so, your accusation of heresy seems fairly groundless.

If you retort that 'the scriptures alone' prove that such and such is a heresy, then at least expound upon the verses rather than simply saying "read Isaiah 53" or "1 Peter blows this away". That kind of rhetoric is pretty meaningless and gives the impression of an unwillingness to actually engage the issue.


Lastly, are we going to talk now that I have read Isaiah 53?

April 04, 2007 1:35 PM

 
Blogger Scribe said...

100 comments later and no headway--Blue, I think it's time to close comments, I see neither party convinced of the opposing view. My suggestion...conserve your strength to be there for your father, don't let the enemy detract you from what really matters.I fail to see Christ being honored in such disputations...

Praying Christ's best for your family,

Scribe

April 05, 2007 12:02 AM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Jazzy: "Yes, and it is 100% effective. It is irresistible grace. (John 6:37, Rom. 8:29-30, John 3:3, Eph. 2:4-5) While we are still dead in sin, God made us alive."

Jazzy, if it is 100% effective, why did I not receive the gospel when I first heard it? Why do many people not respond positively to the gospel when they first hear it if it is 100% irresistible? Why do some people who claim to be atheist, eventually come to believe the gospel if it is 100% effective?

Are you suggesting that a person has responded to the gospel before they even know it, but continues in a sinless lifestyle while in their own minds they've rejected it?

Paul plants, Apollos waters and God gives the increase. The gospel, if it falls on the fertile ground of a person's heart, will take root and grow. Each of us is responsible for the way in which we cultivate our hearts. God gives the increase which I take to be salvation (and of course the growth part). So grace is not 100% irresistible as it must fall on fertile ground. If it was always 100% irresistible then all who hear would come to salvation.

Romans 8:30 isn't saying that God only calls those whom He has predestined. Rather they were "also called" as "calling" is the first step to salvation. God calls all men everywhere to repent. (Acts 17:30)

Ephesians 2:4-5 is saying that God made those of us who were dead alive. WHY did He do that? Because we put our faith in God through Jesus Christ. Paul isn't trying to say that they were made alive for no reason, rather it was due to their faith.

Jazzy: "Question: If man has the ability on his own, why do you and others keep mentioning God calling, drawing, and wooing? Seems to me that you realize it takes God to intervene, but erroneously believe he does it to everyone. The verses I gave above show that he doesn't. There are many more I could have given such as "My sheep know my voice." Not everyone, but my sheep.

There are many different calls from God. I believe in a call, an effectual call and a call to purpose.

The general call is to all and all have the ability to receive, but not all WILL receive. There are many reasons that some will not receive, but the ultimate reason is that their hearts are hardened by themselves first and then by God. It is all a matter of the heart and there are many complex issues that go into the matters of the heart. Only God knows all those reasons. Those who receive the call then have an effectual calling whereby salvation is obtained. Once salvation is obtained we're called to God's purpose. We're renewed and washed by the water of the word. We understand the deeper things of the Lord. And so on.

As for ability, I mean that we all have the ability within ourselves to receive the call. It simply depends on how we've cultivated our hearts and where we choose to place our faith. God looks upon the heart. (I Samuel 16:7; Romans 10:10) That is not to say that we can save ourselves, but the responsibility of man is to place his faith in God through Jesus Christ.

Jazzy: "There are many more I could have given such as "My sheep know my voice." Not everyone, but my sheep."

Right. Those who have rejected God or have served a God of their own choosing do not know His voice. That's all that verse is saying. It's not saying that God chose certain ones for reasons known only to God. Rather it's saying that those who do heed the call are those who have not closed their hearts to God. They've chosen to believe the gospel that was given to them.

When Jesus was here on earth he put aside the God part of Himself and operated as man. He did what the Father showed him and told Him. (John 5:19) That is why He says "all that the Father gives to me will I in no wise cast out." It is because GOD knew the hearts of those who were true believers. The Father knew the hearts of those evil Pharisees and they were not ones given to Jesus. Had they been true followers of God, they would have been a part of Jesus' sheep. It's not saying that God chose particular people to be saved for no apparent reason. God chooses on the state of one's heart and whether or not they believe the gospel. God does not impart that belief. Belief is the responsiblity on man's part.

Jazzy: "Romans 1 is speaking of general revelation that people deny. That is why people still today deny creation."

Right. But that general revelation is part of the process. People deny it or accept it. That shows ability. That is not the only scripture that shows ability. All throughout the bible God commands us to to seek Him, to repent, to believe, etc. That implies ability.

Jazzy: "The law in our hearts is the sense of right and wrong that humans are born with and animals such as "Jazzy" for example has no concept of."

Right. And that is why humans are held accountable for their actions and that is part of the process that helps us to be lead to salvation. The ability to know right from wrong. The ability to choose right from wrong. The ability to choose God or not. Of course that is once we are called and drawn. But God clearly calls and draws us all. That is why He has given us the law and His revelation. That is why Jesus lights every man. (John 1:9)

Jazzy: "As long as you believe the external call (John 3:16 & Acts 17) implies ability, I can see where you get your view."

Absolutely I believe John 3:16 and Act 17 imply abilitly, but it is not only these passages. Rather it is the whole bible. Words and phrases like: believe, trust, seek, repent, reason, persuade(d), convince(d), study, search, will not, would not, whosoever (will), anyone, etc., not only imply ability, but they also refute 100% irresistiblity and the idea that man cannot respond to the gospel.

Jazzy: "However, as a young person, you have time to consider if verses such as John 3:16 really support universal ability."

I'm 45. While that is still young I'm not sure how young you think I am. :-)

And I will turn it around to you and say that as long as you have breath (I don't know your age. You may be younger than me.), you still have time to consider if verses such as John 3:16 really do not support universal ability.

April 05, 2007 2:35 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Dawn,
I do appreciate your perseverance and obvious love for God. I was an agnostic when I was your age.

Now for a few responses.
You said........
Romans 8:30 isn't saying that God only calls those whom He has predestined.

Oh yes it does....
Romans: 8:30
NASB…….and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
NIV…….And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
KJV……Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
ESV…..And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

We must deal with the text as written and since this call is 100% effective, it obviously does not go out to everyone.

You said........
Those who receive the call then have an effectual calling whereby salvation is obtained.

What do you mean? A person kinda believes and God says, "alrighty then, since you almost believe, I will give you the effectual call."

You said........
God chooses on the state of one's heart

From where does a person get his heart? Is it not God given? If it is God given, then the heart that believes is doing so because of his God given heart. This was the orginal question of this post.

As to John 3:16 and ability, I will give an analogy.

For Wal-Mart so appreciated it's world wide customers, that everyone who comes in to shop today will receive a 20% discount.

Does that statement confirm or deny ability for every human being in the world to take Wal-Mart up on that offer.....
Obviously not. It is an offer that many do not have the ability to take.

I thought you were much younger. But, I am older.

Wayne

April 05, 2007 9:17 AM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Jazzy: "We must deal with the text as written and since this call is 100% effective, it obviously does not go out to everyone."

I can agree with you, but only insofar as the effectiveness is dependent upon a person's placing their faith in Christ. The effectiveness is not in the call, but rather in the salvation, justification and glorification. God calls and those who heed are saved. I do not believe the bible teaches irresistible grace and 100% effectiveness of that grace. I need to think more about this.


Dawn: "Those who receive the call then have an effectual calling whereby salvation is obtained."

Jazzy: "What do you mean? A person kinda believes and God says, "alrighty then, since you almost believe, I will give you the effectual call.""

LOL (touché), no that's not what I'm saying. Like I said maybe I'm not wording things properly. I believe that the bible teaches that God calls everyone to believe and to repent. Those who heed the call are called to a further purpose. I.e., to become the sons of God, etc. So maybe I'm just putting too many calls into the mix. I need to re-read the scriptures and define and refine my wording.

Jazzy: "From where does a person get his heart? Is it not God given? If it is God given, then the heart that believes is doing so because of his God given heart. This was the orginal question of this post."

God gives us a heart and He allows us the freewill to cultivate it however we choose. If we fill it with evil then we'll be evil and be less receptive to the gospel. If it is filled with too much evil, we will never heed the gospel. If we fill it with good or less evil things then we will have a better chance at heeding the gospel. If we do heed the gospel, then God gives us a new heart and you know the rest of the story.

To say that because God gave us our hearts it is a back door to unconditional election is incorrect because He allowed us the freedom to do with our lives what we would. He did not make us do evil or good. He allows for the natural occurrence of things. Like genetics, cause and effect, etc. That is not to say that He doesn't intervene or that He doesn't cause certain things to come to pass. He has a plan and in our God-given freewill we work within His plan. He has still given us a choice in the matter of salvation. All we need do is believe.

Jazzy: "For Wal-Mart so appreciated it's world wide customers, that everyone who comes in to shop today will receive a 20% discount.

Does that statement confirm or deny ability for every human being in the world to take Wal-Mart up on that offer.....
Obviously not. It is an offer that many do not have the ability to take.
"

If Wal-Mart offered its customers world-wide a 20% discount, it is up to each customer whether or to go to Wal-Mart to take advantage of the offer. How do you get inability out that scenario?

I thought you were younger than me. :-)

April 06, 2007 2:02 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Dawn,
Thanks for your input here and your kindness. As you said on the other thread we have pretty much run the course on this subject.

One final explanation on the Wal-Mart analogy. No analogy is perfect, but there are probably untold thousands if not millions of Wal-Mart customers who due to sickness, their physcial location and other reason would not be able to get to a Wal-Mart store within 24 hours. Therefore, just as John 3:16 does not imply ability, neither would such an offer by Wal-Mart. I guess it was silly, but I wanted to show that the language used in either offer does not assert ability to respond. I embrace John 3:16 and believe it is a wonderful verse in evangelism and is totally accurate. All who believe will be saved.

Thanks again and I will check in on your blog from time to time.

April 06, 2007 10:01 AM

 
Blogger Dawn said...

Thanks Jazzy. Please do visit my blog from time to time. You're always welcome. Though, I'm am rather sporadic with my entries.

April 07, 2007 10:35 AM

 
Blogger J. Wendell said...

Hi brother Mark and Jazzy,

Your assetment of ED and DM seems to be accurate, as smart and humorous as they are. "...they aren't quite right." I agree.
Too bad they are banned. I would like to ask, if they have been elevated above being in sin and why they don't understand that there is a penalty for sin and that a propitiation must be made.

God bless you,
brother John

April 09, 2007 10:30 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

John,
Thank you for your response to ED and DM. Maybe they will check in and see your question for them.
wayne

April 09, 2007 9:09 PM

 

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