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  • Mark 4:11-12 help. Does Jesus want everyone saved?

    In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

    Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

    What is your opinion?
    "Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life." Philippians 4:6-7 (The Message)

  • #2
    Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
    In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

    Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

    What is your opinion?
    My opinion?

    This does show the doctrine of election. This is reflected in the parable you are referring to in Mark 4

    God bless
    Phil

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
      In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

      Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

      What is your opinion?
      Hi Magnetic,
      Jesus is quoting Isa 6:9,10. When the Lord sent Jeremiah to speak to the people to warn them about the coming judgment, those who were marked to receive this judgment would not be warned by it - but the remnant would.

      This is the same election we see here in Mark for this remnant in Israel who would be warned before the judgment came upon Jerusalem, while those upon whom the judgment was aimed would not. That is why Jesus spoke in parables to fulfill prophecy.
      Robin

      Truth is so obscure in these times and falsehood so established that, unless one loves the truth, he cannot know it. - Blaise Pascal
      And Jesus saith unto him [Thomas], I am the way the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. - John 14:6
      Discernment is not needed in things that differ, but in things that appear to be the same. - Miles Sanford
      Those who compromise with Christís enemies may be reckoned with them. - C.H. Spurgeon

      Comment


      • #4
        Jesus desires all to come to him! His name is Savior!

        Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
        In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

        Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

        What is your opinion?
        Magnetic:
        Jesus said that he came to seek and save the lost.

        The Bible clearly states that God "is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" (II Peter 3:9) and "takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked" (Ezek). So in my view the passage in question must bear a different signficance.

        I am very familiar with the passage, and how it functions in the book of Mark, and would like to say more about it; but I haven't the time just at this moment.

        Roughly, though, I think Jesus' point is that he speaks in parables to challenge his hearers to faith -- to seek out the word, and take it deep within their hearts. The parable is about that very thing. Jesus emphasizes just afterward that nothing is hidden except to come to light. And most particularly, Mark, by use of a very peculiar phrase "when he was alone, those who were about him with the twelve", refered to by Jesus as those "inside", emphasizes that the meaning of the parable is for all who want to take the trouble to understand what Jesus is saying. Thus "the measure you give is the measure you get."

        I'll try to get back with a more complete explanation -- which also might include the following chapter (5) and the incident with the Syro-Phonecian woman (chapter 7) which many find problematic, for similar reasons, and which I think, read carefully in context, is again emphasizing Jesus' intent that his Gospel should reach as many as possible.

        Blessings,
        Scruff

        Comment


        • #5
          Mag,

          I believe that God does want to save all men, in due time, but that blindness, in part and for a limited time, serves the purposes of God:

          1 Timothy 2:5-6 - For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time,

          Here is an exegesis of Romans 11 that I posted a while back:

          Romans 11 exegesis
          Follow Paul's thoughts all the way from chapter 9 thru chapter 11. To not do so will leave you with an incomplete picture of what Paul is saying:

          Paul starts by showing there is an elect:

          Romans 11:4-5 But what does the divine response say to him? “I have reserved for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” Even so then, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace.

          A remnant of Israel according to election.

          He then states:

          Romans 11:7 - What then? Israel has not obtained what it seeks; but the elect have obtained it, and the rest were blinded.

          He then makes a clear distinction and contrast between 2 seperate groups. "the elect" and "the rest".

          The elect have obtained righteousness/salvation and the rest are blinded.

          2 clear distinct groups.

          Romans 11:11 - I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles.

          Paul now states concerning "the rest" that they have not stumbled that they should fall, but their stumbling is for a divine purpose (to provoke jealousy in themselves and bring salvation to the gentiles).

          Romans 11:25-26 - For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:

          Paul, then says that he does not want us to be ignorant of the mystery. Blindness has happened in part to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come and then all Israel will be saved.

          This is clearly speaking of physical Israel, which has been Paul's topic since Romans 9 and through 10 and 11.

          Romans 11:28 - Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.

          The "they" in the above passage are "the rest", those who have been blinded in Israel and who are not "the elect".

          Romans 11:29 - For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

          God is soveriegn, we both agree here so don't think there is much to discuss regarding that passage.

          Romans 11:30 - For as you were once disobedient to God, yet have now obtained mercy through their disobedience, .

          The "their", once again, is "the rest", the blinded ones of Israel who are seperate from "the elect".
          We gentiles obtained mercy through their disobedience/unbelief.

          Romans 11:31 - even so these also have now been disobedient, that through the mercy shown you they also may obtain mercy.

          Once again, "the rest", those who are currently blinded and not a part of "the elect" will be shown mercy because of the mercy shown gentiles, who were also shown mercy in our disobedience/unbelief.

          Romans 11:32 - For God has committed all to disobedience, that He might have mercy on all.

          The mystery, of which we are not to be ignorant of. God has committed all to disobedience/unbelief that He might have mercy on all.

          This mystery/revelation makes Paul break into his doxology:
          Romans 11:33-36 - Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!
          “ For who has known the mind of the LORD?
          Or who has become His counselor?”
          “ Or who has first given to Him
          And it shall be repaid to him?”
          For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.
          WDJD - what DID Jesus do

          He died on a cross for our sin and rose from the dead,
          securing, for all who believe, eternal life and forgiveness of sin

          Toolman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
            In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

            Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

            What is your opinion?

            Simply, the OT explains this, God blinded them so that they couldn't see and understand because their hearts were set to be wicked. And God took advantage of that in order to have the crucifixion happen so that THE WHOLE WORLD could be saved, even the gentiles. If they had beleived then they wouldn't have crucified Him, and guess where that would leave you and me and the billions of other souls that have come to faith in Christ since that time. It is my belief however that they were forgiven for this, because Jesus said "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do." If Jesus said it, then it must be that they were forgiven. After all, Jesus is God in the flesh, right?

            It is kind of like the scene where there was a wicked king in the OT that God sent a deceiving spirit to, to be a lie in the mouths of all the false prophets, and I believe it was the story of Elijah when he called them all together to prove who is God and who is not. That wicked king WANTED to believe lies he didn't desire the truth, so God let him have what he desired.
            Don't seek too much knowledge. You just may be putting more weight on your shoulders than you're able to bare. Let God be the one to decide how quickly you grow.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks people. I can see what you all are saying and can make sense of it, so that's a good thing.

              I was just wondering because of hearing preachers (John MacArther, to be specific) talk about not everyone being saved because they weren't "called by God as the elect".
              "Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life." Philippians 4:6-7 (The Message)

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
                Thanks people. I can see what you all are saying and can make sense of it, so that's a good thing.

                I was just wondering because of hearing preachers (John MacArther, to be specific) talk about not everyone being saved because they weren't "called by God as the elect".
                Mag,

                There are several different beliefs in Christianity:

                1) Those who believe that God has chosen to save only some people and not save others (usually called reformed or calvinists).

                2) Those who believe that God desires everyone to be saved but His desire can be thwarted by man's will (usually called free-will or arminian).

                3) Those who believe God desires everyone to be saved and that He will accomplish that desire (usually called universalists).

                Those are the 3 basic positions within evangelical/protestant Christianity.
                WDJD - what DID Jesus do

                He died on a cross for our sin and rose from the dead,
                securing, for all who believe, eternal life and forgiveness of sin

                Toolman

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Toolman View Post
                  Mag,

                  There are several different beliefs in Christianity:

                  1) Those who believe that God has chosen to save only some people and not save others (usually called reformed or calvinists).

                  2) Those who believe that God desires everyone to be saved but His desire can be thwarted by man's will (usually called free-will or arminian).

                  3) Those who believe God desires everyone to be saved and that He will accomplish that desire (usually called universalists).

                  Those are the 3 basic positions within evangelical/protestant Christianity.
                  Then there is the position I hold which sees the elect of Israel in the context of bringing Messiah into the world - which election is now extended to all who call upon the name of the Lord and shall be saved.
                  Robin

                  Truth is so obscure in these times and falsehood so established that, unless one loves the truth, he cannot know it. - Blaise Pascal
                  And Jesus saith unto him [Thomas], I am the way the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. - John 14:6
                  Discernment is not needed in things that differ, but in things that appear to be the same. - Miles Sanford
                  Those who compromise with Christís enemies may be reckoned with them. - C.H. Spurgeon

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mograce2U View Post
                    Then there is the position I hold which sees the elect of Israel in the context of bringing Messiah into the world - which election is now extended to all who call upon the name of the Lord and shall be saved.
                    Robin,

                    I believe that position falls into one of the 3 groups mentioned. We can explore that if you wish.
                    WDJD - what DID Jesus do

                    He died on a cross for our sin and rose from the dead,
                    securing, for all who believe, eternal life and forgiveness of sin

                    Toolman

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Magnetic View Post
                      In Mark 4:11-12, Jesus is talking about why he spoke in parables and he basically said that he does so in order that they will hear what he is saying, but not understand, because if they DID understand, they might get saved.

                      Now, why wouldn't Jesus want to do everything within his power to make sure everyone came to salvation? Some people may use this verse to show the "doctrine of election".

                      What is your opinion?




                      And when he was alone, those who were about him with the twelve asked him concerning the parables. And he said to them, "To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables; so that they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven." (Mark 4:10-12 RSV)



                      That latter verse has caused a great deal of difficulty in many people's minds. What did he mean? Did he actually mean that he spoke in parables in order to hide the truth so that people could not understand it and thereby be forgiven?

                      This is what it sounds as though he said. But this is only one of three explanatory paragraphs Mark inserts here, right from the lips of Jesus which help us to understand the reasons why Jesus spoke in parables.

                      This first one gives us a very illuminating reason. The Lord himself points out that there are two kinds of hearers, and that this is why he speaks in parables: "To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God." That is, one class of hearers is the disciples of Jesus -- those who follow him, who are obedient to him, who listen to him and accept his authority as Lord and teacher. To them is given the secret of the kingdom of God.

                      The word he actually uses is "mystery" -- the mystery of the kingdom of God. I am always entranced by these mysteries which are mentioned in Scripture. They are not vague and difficult to understand, the word does not mean that. But they are secret from the majority of people. Paul, in his first letter to the Corinthians, says of the apostles, "This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God," (1 Corinthians 4:1 RSV). That is, as men entrusted with sacred secrets which God has told to men.

                      What are these mysteries? Basically, as you read through the Scriptures, you see that they are inside information on life which only believers, only disciples, are given to understand.

                      They are, in fact, truths which the natural man cannot discover by himself. They are great missing pieces, if you like, of the jigsaw puzzle of life. Here is the world and all humanity, working away trying to explain what we are, to understand the universe in which we live, and the society in which we function -- how it works, and why it embodies such difficult problems.

                      The nuclear physicist comes along and puts in a piece of the puzzle. Then along comes the geologist and he fits in a piece. Then the psychologist and psychiatrist fill out a part of it, and we begin to understand a bit more.

                      Then the philosophers add their part. We keep working away at putting together this tremendously complex, amazing jigsaw puzzle of life, trying to understand it.

                      But Jesus declares here that there are certain missing pieces which only God can put in. And they are essential to the understanding of the problem! These he calls "the mysteries of God."

                      In Chapters 1 and 2 of First Corinthians, Paul describes them as the "deep things of God," (1 Corinthians 2:10 KJV). He says the natural man cannot understand them, for they are revealed only by the Spirit of God: "For what person knows a man's thoughts except the spirit of the man which is in him?

                      So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God," (1 Corinthians 2:11 RSV). Only the Spirit of God knows these deep things of God, these great and enlightening secrets which help you to grasp fully what is going on in your life, or in anybody else's.

                      Therefore, this is not merely a certain amount of theological hogwash. This is practical truth which is hidden from us and can be revealed only by God himself.

                      Scripture speaks of various mysteries: In Second Thessalonians Paul speaks of the "mystery of lawlessness," (2 Thessalonians 2:7 RSV). This is what men all around us are trying to solve today -- the reason why evil persists in human hearts, why there seems to be a fountain of evil and violence in man which, no matter what we do to treat the symptoms, continues to pour out ever-increasing manifestations of violence and bitterness and hatred and prejudice and persecution.

                      This is where educators, legislators, and social planners wrestle. Why is all this true? The revelation which explains it is in the secrets God alone reveals. That is why more than anything else we need to understand the Bible, because it holds the key to the problems which are at work in our lives.

                      Then Paul speaks of the "mystery of godliness" (1 Timothy 3:16 KJV) -- the counterpart of the mystery of lawlessness. This is the secret of how to cope with life, how to handle these problems of violence and evil which you find even within yourself, how to handle pressures and disasters, perplexities, and all the common irritations which come our way, how to react to them, what to do about them so that you can handle everything which comes, and remain calm and poised and at peace, and effective in the lives of others.

                      That is the mystery of godliness -- Godlikeness, if you like, which is the full meaning of the word.

                      But here Mark speaks of the "mystery of the kingdom," (Mark 4:11 KJV). What does this mean? It means the understanding of what God is doing now in history -- how the events of our day are being used in the program and planning of God, God's rule over men at work in current events.

                      This is the mystery of the kingdom -- how God functions in human society, just exactly what he is doing today, and how he is doing it. The world would have us believe that everything takes place quite apart from God, that if there is a God he is sitting up there some place watching us poor, struggling mortals down here on the sinful plains of life, but that he really has nothing to do with it; he is just watching it happen.

                      But the Scriptures reveal that God himself is involved in every single event, that nothing occurs which God is not in touch with and has not arranged and brought into being.

                      Without destroying our will to choose, or our freedom to move, he nevertheless is working things out to a vast and cosmic purpose which he announces to us. That is the mystery of the kingdom of God. "And to you," Jesus says, "you who are disciples, is given that secret. You can understand it."

                      But there is a second class, described as "those outside" -- "for those outside everything is in parables." Who are these? Well, of course, they are everyone who is not a disciple.

                      There may be many right here on this board-- church members, or regular church attenders, but not really disciples, not really open to understanding and obeying the Lordship of Christ (which is what a disciple must be), and so the truth is hidden from them. To them the parables will be simple stories without much meaning.

                      Jesus then said this rather solemn, amazing thing: "...everything is in parables; so that they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven."

                      This is the part which troubles many. It does indeed sound as though Jesus is saying "I don't want them to turn again. I've hidden this truth so that they won't. The last thing I want is for them to be forgiven." But we know immediately that is not true; that cannot be what this means.

                      We will be helped greatly if we understand two things about this account: One is that it is highly condensed. Mark's account of this statement is the most condensed of all.

                      We need the parallel passages in Matthew and Luke as well, particularly in Matthew, to understand what Jesus is saying here, and we will look at that in a moment.

                      The second thing we need to understand is that this is a poorly edited account. The editors have failed us at this point. It would help a great deal if you would take pencil or pen and put some additional quotation marks around these words: "'...they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven.'"

                      Jesus is not originating this statement; he is quoting Isaiah. He is saying that this word of Isaiah is being fulfilled at the present time. He does not say, "I'm speaking in parables in order that it might be fulfilled"; he is saying, "I'm speaking in parables because it is being fulfilled."

                      That makes a big difference. It would be perfectly valid for you to insert the words "it is fulfilled" in Verse 12: "... so that it is fulfilled, 'they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven.'"

                      If you look at Matthew 13 you see that this is exactly what has happened. In this parallel passage, the full quotation from Isaiah is given to us. Verse 14:

                      "With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah which says:
                      'You shall indeed hear but never understand,
                      and you shall indeed see but never perceive.'" (Matthew 13:14 RSV)


                      Then Isaiah goes on to explain why this is happening. Mark leaves this out, quotes only the conclusion. Verse 15 of Matthew 13:

                      "'For this people's heart has grown dull,
                      and their ears are heavy of hearing,
                      and their eyes they have closed...'" (Matthew 13:15a RSV)


                      Who closed their eyes? Not God. The people closed them. And why did they close their eyes?

                      "'lest they should perceive with their eyes,
                      and hear with their ears,
                      and understand with their heart,
                      and turn for me to heal them.'" (Matthew 13:15b RSV)


                      The people did not want to be healed. That is the point. In order to prevent the healing of their spirit, of the hurt of their heart, which Jesus wanted to bring them, they closed their eyes and ears.

                      What did the people want? They wanted physical healing, and that is all they wanted. They wanted Jesus to cure their diseases and get rid of all their afflictions so that they could go on just as they were before.

                      Jesus, knowing this, tells them "You are fulfilling the very words of Isaiah the prophet, in that you are not willing to listen to what I have to say. You want me to heal only the body."

                      This is what happens in many of the so-called "healing meetings" of our day. Exactly the same principle is operating. People do not want the spirit to be changed, the real problem to be solved.

                      This was what was happening then; they turned off their minds when Jesus began to teach. So, to capture their attention, Jesus said, "I'll tell you the truth in parables. If you won't listen to this teaching, then I'll give it to you in a different way -- in order that he might reach them."

                      This gives us clear understanding of what he is saying here in Mark -- that parables are designed for the uninterested, for those who have turned their minds off. This is his first explanation -- that there are two classes of hearers.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Nice post, Lars...and just where have you been, anyway? First post since the end of August...Was it something I said?




                        As an aside, I love your sig...been meanin' to tell ya' that for a while.
                        θεοφιλε

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Theophilus View Post
                          Nice post, Lars...and just where have you been, anyway? First post since the end of August...Was it something I said?




                          As an aside, I love your sig...been meanin' to tell ya' that for a while.
                          Hi and thank you......well I have been busy between landscaping and building a deck off my dads house and a little remodeling upstairs I have not had a lot of spare time.

                          But I will be filtering back in little by little as the deck is done and the grass is not growing as fast and the remodeling is just about done.

                          No nothing you said On a forum board with all these members and all of the many posts each day for you to notice that I have not been here gives me a special feeling....one of belonging to a family....as family only notice these kind of things.............

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Lars777 View Post
                            On a forum board with all these members and all of the many posts each day for you to notice that I have not been here gives me a special feeling....one of belonging to a family....as family only notice these kind of things.............
                            'Sokay, bro...and by the way, Mom says to take out the garbage...and I'm wearing your shirt, 'cause I got a milkshake on your other one.

                            Can I borrow your car?


                            θεοφιλε

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks for the post, Lars.
                              "Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life." Philippians 4:6-7 (The Message)

                              Comment

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