Perhaps I owe you an apology, I meant no insult. I'm very pleased you were strengthened!Have you ever taught error? Did you grow in grace and knowledge? Does your error mean all your teaching is bad? Lord knows I have taught error before. Thankfully, God did not throw me away but instead, used me in spite of the error!
No matter who one listens to, we have to be strong enough in Scripture to not just accept whatever is said, but to think critically.
"Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see if they are from God..." 1Jn4:1.
With some, they make it easy --- I often listen to MacArthur and Sproul radio shows just to know their positions. MacArthur says things like "God GLORIES in the hopeless helpless no-chance perishing of the majority of people whom God CREATED to be sinful and to perish". Uh, huh. Not the God I know! Would I ever use a MacArthur Study Bible? Heavens no! :-P
He must have struggled with the whole idea of "sovereign election". In the quote I posted above from "Warrant of Faith", he didn't seem to realize he was rejecting the foundation of "Predestined-Salvation"; or that his very assertion aligns perfectly with Matt9:12-13, where Reformed Theology recognizes no connection between Jesus coming for people, and regeneration. Clearly, Jesus came for the sick, that through faith they may become healed and regenerated.Spurgeon has many great sermons that are a wonderful encouragement to the saints. That doesn't mean I agree with all he says. However, he did get some great revelation from the Lord! I remember one piece where he would witness to someone and say "God has elected some to go to heaven, why don't you be one of them?"
Probably not enough. I've read stuff from Sproul, MacArthur, Pink, White, Gill, etcetera; have books like "Chosen by God" and "The Sovereignty of God". All those verses we've been discussing are in those books.Have you read much of his work?
One thing that's critical for us all to understand is Biblical use of literary devices; "Semitic View" (anthropromorphism) for one. Many times they wrote "GOD DID IT", when all the readers at the time understood "men did it themselves". Exodus10:1 is a perfect example --- in that verse "God hardened Pharaoh's heart"; but just two verses earlier (9:34) Pharaoh hardened his OWN heart. It's the same in Romans9, where God "hardens whom He will and has mercy on whom He will" --- in no sense does it mean God actually CLOSES any hearts to belief, nor that God only has mercy on some; it is Semitic View, those who are hardened did it themselves, and God has mercy on ALL (Rom11:32) but men choose to submit themselves to His mercy or not.Did he use a spirit of deception with Ahab? Did he put an evil Spirit on Saul?That verse connects directly to 1Tim1:20, where a man can be left to the consequences of his own choice that he may learn faith. Oftentimes God withdraws His protection and allows men to suffer their own consequences or evil men, which gets written as "God sent ____".Did he have the guy in 1 Cor. 5 turned over to Satan to discipline him?All of that has to fit with "In Him there is no sin", and "God can have nothing to do with evil". God's nature and essence are perfection and infinite goodness, tempered with justness; God cannot be causally involved in anything evil.Did God use the evil chaldeans to discipline his people in Habakkuk? Did he raise up the evil Babylonians to chastise Israel?
I think it's similar to what happened with Job. God did not send satan to attack Job, but God allowed the attack. There is a verse where "God will rebuke the destroyer"; so clearly there are times when He does not rebuke the destroyer.It is a hard thing to believe and God tells us it is a hard thing to believe.
5 " Look among the nations! Observe!
Be astonished! Wonder!
Because I am doing something in your days —
You would not believe if you were told.
6 "For behold, I am raising up the Chaldeans,
That fierce and impetuous people
Who march throughout the earth
To seize dwelling places which are not theirs.
7 "They are dreaded and feared;
Their justice and authority originate with themselves.
But he answers a question later about what his purpose is in doing so.
12 Are You not from everlasting,
O Lord, my God, my Holy One?
We will not die.
You, O Lord, have appointed them to judge;
And You, O Rock, have established them to correct.
Makes me frightened with what's happening in America --- "marriage" being defined in new and fascinating ways, God rejected from all public consumption, we must be dealt with else many ancient cities must receive an apology for what happened to them.
I'm betting every last person here acknowledges the connection between 1Cor5:5 and 1Tim1:20; "taught-not-to-blaspheme", clearly conveys that the bad consequences of their choices may encourage them to REPENTANCE. Bringing to mind 2Tim2:25-26:Paul understood this concept and said he would turn people over to Satan to teach them.
"...if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will."
Clearly, "God-grant-repentance" is identically "come-to-their-senses"; it is yet another Semitic View, God does not ACTUALLY hand-out repentance (rather, He receives repentance FROM men) --- it is saying "if perhaps they may come to their senses AND repent".
"May-come-to-their-senses" does not fit with "God-handing-out-repentance"; but it fits perfectly with "become-convicted-and-repent". A second Semitic View in that very passage is "held-captive-by-the-devil" (which reminds us of 2Cor4:4) --- the devil does not actually have any more control over men than what they GIVE him. But a man who chooses sinfulness, is said to be "held-captive/blinded by the devil". Neither God nor the devil forcefully closes anyone's eyes (Mark4:11-12), they close their own eyes and ears against belief (Matt13:15!).
It's all "causality". God does not write evil into anyone's heart, nor does He collaborate with anything evil; but He does allow us to experience consequences, which (hopefully!) cause conviction and repentance.IOW, God uses evil.
I'd like to know if anyone here disagrees with us, and what is the basis for the disagreement.I agree.Originally Posted by Gadget