You do know that Scripture is God's Word (all Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness – 2 Tim 3:16), yes?
And that Scripture is one of the means in which God reaches out to mankind ... and that is God "making the first move" so to speak as far as "calling" out to the lost and the sinners ... you do know this, yes?
Reply split into 2 due to size limitation.
Those spiritually dead cannot respond to a "first move" - to be able to do that, they must first be given spiritual life, and spiritual life comes with salvation. Therefore, in having already become saved, God's purpose in reaching out is to provide edification, not salvation.
"quickened": made alive.
[Eph 2:1 KJV]
1 And you [hath he quickened], who were dead in trespasses and sins;
[Col 2:13 KJV]
13 And you, being dead in your sins
and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened
together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
[1Co 2:14 KJV]
14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God
: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know [them], because they are spiritually discerned.
Quit arguing with God and do as He instructs. Turn your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ and see Him in every book of the Bible ... from Genesis to Revelation ... and then see how much of God's Word opens up to you as you read with purpose and with unveiled heart. So then, faith by hearing and hearing by the Word of God – Rom 10:17).
The arguing is yours and is because you do not understand/believe in grace as fundamental to, and a requirement of, the gospel, but instead is in your own works. If you don't read the Bible following its instruction, then you won't its truth.
The "hearing" of Rom 10:17, is spiritual hearing, not human hearing. It comes only in conjunction with being born-again, which comes from being saved - it is not of man's doing nor can be heard (comprehended) with man's ears.
[Jhn 8:43 KJV] 43 Why do ye not understand my speech? [even] because ye cannot hear my word
ONLY GOD CAN TURN THE HEART
Read the verses again, rogerg. I didn't write the Book and you appear to be rewriting it in order to fit a preconceived notion you have come up with:
2 Corinthians 3:15-16 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it [the heart of the reader/hearer] shall turn [verb, active] to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away [verb, passive].
. I guess that I incorrectly assumed you would be able to project my intent from my post, but apparently, I was wrong. Look at the following verses. The heart of natural man as-is is impervious to the things of God: a fully corrupted heart (of which all of the unsaved have), cannot change itself. In a spiritual sense, the heart of unsaved man has nothing spiritually good within itself to change itself.
[Jer 17:9 KJV] 9 The heart [is] deceitful above all [things
], and desperately wicked: who can know it?
[Eze 36:26 KJV] 26 A new heart also will I give you,
and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
[Psa 58:2-3 KJV]
2 Yea, in heart ye work wickedness
; ye weigh the violence of your hands in the earth.
3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.
[Rom 2:5 KJV]
5 But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath
and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;
Scripture is the "something external to themselves". And Scripture is God making the first move in reaching out to mankind.
No, God must cause them to change first. Until and unless He does so, the gospel will be lost on them. See 1 Co 2:14 - it cannot be made any clearer than does that verse. Why are you so unable to comprehend or accept it?
You again rip a verse from its context and present an opinion that is not supported by Scripture:
2 Peter 1:20 relates to the Scripture writings.
The first thing we are to know about Scripture is that the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
Read Jeremiah 36 for a full understanding of 2 Peter 1:20-21.
Having said that, we are to understand words within verses, verses within immediate context, immediate context within remote context, and all Scripture is to fit together with no contradictions.
We are to be like the Bereans who searched the Scriptures daily whether those things [the things Paul and Silas taught] were so – Acts 17:11.
No, it is not to be read that way! For example, God created both OT AND a NT exactly because His revelations were not intended to be fully complete in any one verse or series of physically adjacent verses - His revelation was progressive throughout spanning the whole Bible, with all being necessary to gain true, correct, and complete understanding. Plus, it must be of God's will to give a particular person the Holy Spirit so they gain understanding and accompanying faith.
Yes, Scripture does not contradict itself but neither does a lack of contradiction mean the full revelation has been found using only isolated verses - but, to achieve that, an analysis of all like verses throughout the whole Bible is necessary.
God did move His prophets to write the Bible. The point, however, is not whether He moved them to write it, but in how He moved them to structure it. He did not move them so it be read as any other book - should someone approach it in that manner, it would be very difficult to find/understand its truth, and which would easily lead to its misinterpretation.
Read your last sentence again more closely. The Bereans searched "the Scriptures" - they searched all of the Scriptures - to find whether a doctrine is "so". They did not cease their search at individual verses, nor accept that as final a confirmation, but sought to validate against the WHOLE bible. The Bible was written to be read and understood only as being FULLY and COMPLETEY INTERGRATED and INTERRELATED.
For example, in the below, multiple verses were referenced by Christ to document and demonstrate to them whom He was.
[Jhn 5:39, 45-47 KJV]
39 Search the scriptures
; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they
which testify of me. ...
45 Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is [one] that accuseth you, [even] Moses, in whom ye trust.
46 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me.
47 But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words
[1Co 2:13 KJV]
13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.