Does God love all mankind and does He wish to save everyone

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Mar 23, 2016
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The confusion lies in mistaking the Gospel for the deep things of God. Already addressed and already ignored by the OP.
That, and believing the "natural man" spoken of in 1 Cor 2:14 is an unbeliever as opposed to the carnal Christian.

Just read the first 3 chapters of 1 Corinthians and we see that Paul was speaking to believers who were immature, carnal, "babes in Christ". But they were still born again ... just not able to understand those "deep things of God" Paul was able to relay to those spoken of in 1 Cor 2:6 ... those who were "perfect" (more mature) .
 

ForestGreenCook

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Yes, I have provided you with the proper understanding of 1 Cor 2:14. I have explained 1 Cor 2:14 to you several times.

You reject the truth of Scripture because your dogma is in conflict with the truth of the Word of God.

The word "natural" in 1 Cor 2:14 is the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός).

If Paul had used the Greek word physikós (5446: φυσικός) in 1 Cor 2:14, I would agree with you. But Paul used the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός).

The Greek word physikós (5446: φυσικός) means natural, describing the behavior of an unregenerate person, i.e. a nature lacking divine transformation (salvation). However, Paul did not use this word in 1 Cor 2:14.

In 1 Cor 2:14, Paul used the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός) and the word describes the natural ("lower") aspect of humanity, i.e. behavior that is "more of earth (carnality) than heaven".

Here is what I explained to you in the "Predestination or free wiil" thread at Post #489:

In 1 Cor 2:6 Paul indicated that he spoke to those who were perfect (i.e. more mature, not "perfect" as in 'no sin') concerning the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7).
But the natural man spoken of in 1 Cor 2:14 were those who were "brethren" (1 Cor 2:1) who could receive instruction as to Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Cor 2:2). Paul could not instruct these immature believers about the wisdom of God in a mystery so Paul taught them what they could understand. He did not go beyond what they could comprehend.
The "natural man, as described in 1 Cor 2:14" is the born again believer who is still immature and is referred to in 1 Cor 3:1 as a babe in Christ:
1 Corinthians 2:
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.
15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
3:1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
The "natural man" in 1 Cor 2:14 is the same as the "babe in Christ" spoken of 3 verses later in 1 Cor 3:1.
Yes, I agree that Paul is speaking to his brethren in Christ as indicated from verse 1 through the whole chapter, but in verse 14 he is speaking to his brethren, about the natural man who is void of the Spirit, in comparison to his brethren in verse 13 who discerns spiritual things with spiritual. The natural man referred to in verse 14 is not a born again believer who has been given the Holy Spirit or he would have the ability to discern spiritual things. The carnal men mentioned in 1 Cor 3:1 l are members of the Corinthian church who have been regenerated, and can discern spiritual things. When we have been born again, we still have to contend with our fleshly nature as Paul points out with his battle within himself of the Spirit verses the carnal flesh. Paul tells them, although they are born again, they are demonstrating their carnal nature by their envying, and strife, and divisions.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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Yes, I agree that Paul is speaking to his brethren in Christ as indicated from verse 1 through the whole chapter, but in verse 14 he is speaking to his brethren, about the natural man who is void of the Spirit, in comparison to his brethren in verse 13 who discerns spiritual things with spiritual. The natural man referred to in verse 14 is not a born again believer who has been given the Holy Spirit or he would have the ability to discern spiritual things. The carnal men mentioned in 1 Cor 3:1 l are members of the Corinthian church who have been regenerated, and can discern spiritual things. When we have been born again, we still have to contend with our fleshly nature as Paul points out with his battle within himself of the Spirit verses the carnal flesh. Paul tells them, although they are born again, they are demonstrating their carnal nature by their envying, and strife, and divisions.
I do not agree with your assessment of the verse. Paul was addressing the problems within the believers in the church at Corinth. Paul was not addressing the unbeliever. There was no need to make a statement that the unbeliever cannot comprehend spiritual matters. No one, not even the unbeliever, needs instruction concerning this issue.

However, there was (and still is) a need to understand that the believer who lives according to the "lower aspect of humanity, i.e. behavior that is more of earth (carnality) than heaven" is limited in his/her ability to understand spiritual matters.

The same situation still occurs in our churches to this day. We have believers who never mature to full adulthood in Christ even though they have been born again for years (and in some cases decades). And these carnal believers must feed on the milk of the word.

We need to get past this stage in our spiritual maturation in Christ so that we are no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive (Eph 4:14).


 

ForestGreenCook

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I do not agree with your assessment of the verse. Paul was addressing the problems within the believers in the church at Corinth. Paul was not addressing the unbeliever. There was no need to make a statement that the unbeliever cannot comprehend spiritual matters. No one, not even the unbeliever, needs instruction concerning this issue.

However, there was (and still is) a need to understand that the believer who lives according to the "lower aspect of humanity, i.e. behavior that is more of earth (carnality) than heaven" is limited in his/her ability to understand spiritual matters.

The same situation still occurs in our churches to this day. We have believers who never mature to full adulthood in Christ even though they have been born again for years (and in some cases decades). And these carnal believers must feed on the milk of the word.

We need to get past this stage in our spiritual maturation in Christ so that we are no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive (Eph 4:14).
I am a little confused, maybe you can give me some insight on your answer. You say that you do not agree with my assessment of the verse, and you say "Paul was addressing the problems within the church to believers" I thought that is what I said, unless you are claiming that the believers are the natural man described in 1 Cor 2:14. If so, You are the one assessing it wrong. Babes IN CHRIST have been given the Holy Spirit which makes them able to discern spiritual things. The natural man, void of the Spirit, cannot discern even the baby spiritual things, They are not born again believers. These carnal believers you refer to in 1 cor 3:1 are not the man described in 1 Cor 2:14. Are you going to tell me that Paul is "a babe in Christ" after reading Romans 7:18-25?
 
Mar 23, 2016
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I am a little confused, maybe you can give me some insight on your answer. You say that you do not agree with my assessment of the verse, and you say "Paul was addressing the problems within the church to believers" I thought that is what I said, unless you are claiming that the believers are the natural man described in 1 Cor 2:14.
I have told you numerous times that I believe the natural man described in 1 Cor 2:14 refers to believers who were carnal.

I believe the born again one who is carnal is limited in his/her ability to comprehend spiritual matters. We must remember that Corinth is located in Greece and the Greeks (according to 1 Cor 1:22) seek after wisdom. We cannot comprehend spiritual matters by means of natural, earthly wisdom. These are the issues Paul was dealing with in the church at Corinth.




ForestGreenCook said:
If so, You are the one assessing it wrong. Babes IN CHRIST have been given the Holy Spirit which makes them able to discern spiritual things. The natural man, void of the Spirit, cannot discern even the baby spiritual things, They are not born again believers. These carnal believers you refer to in 1 cor 3:1 are not the man described in 1 Cor 2:14.
In 1 Cor 2:14, Paul is not addressing "baby spiritual things". Paul is addressing the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) which he was able to teach among them that are perfect (1 Cor 2:6) – and again "perfect" refers to more mature, not "perfect" as in 'no sin'.

Paul was unable to teach the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) to those believers referred to in 1 Cor 2:14 because they were living in light of who they were in Adam (carnal) as opposed to who they were in Christ (spiritual).




ForestGreenCook said:
Are you going to tell me that Paul is "a babe in Christ" after reading Romans 7:18-25?
No. Paul teaches us that it is through Jesus Christ our Lord (vs 25) that we are able to overcome to the point where we walk in light of there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus of Rom 8:1.

As we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ (consistently and constantly remain in Him) we grow up and mature in Him. We mature spiritually as we abide in Him without wavering and turning from Him. And that is not to say that our fleshly instincts do not affect us ... it's just that we are able to see the lusts of our flesh for what they are (just distractions which we can ignore if we so choose).

We have got to get to the point where the life we live as we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ is more vital to us than what the flesh has to offer and not get drawn away from Him. I love the verse in Rom 6 which state what fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed (vs 21). I try to remember that verse when my "natural" instincts crop up. the pleasures of sin which last for a season (Heb 11:25) are not worth the greater riches (Heb 11:16) found in an the fellowship enjoyed in the presence of the Father (imho).



 

ForestGreenCook

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I have told you numerous times that I believe the natural man described in 1 Cor 2:14 refers to believers who were carnal.


I believe the born again one who is carnal is limited in his/her ability to comprehend spiritual matters. We must remember that Corinth is located in Greece and the Greeks (according to 1 Cor 1:22) seek after wisdom. We cannot comprehend spiritual matters by means of natural, earthly wisdom. These are the issues Paul was dealing with in the church at Corinth.





In 1 Cor 2:14, Paul is not addressing "baby spiritual things". Paul is addressing the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) which he was able to teach among them that are perfect (1 Cor 2:6) – and again "perfect" refers to more mature, not "perfect" as in 'no sin'.

Paul was unable to teach the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) to those believers referred to in 1 Cor 2:14 because they were living in light of who they were in Adam (carnal) as opposed to who they were in Christ (spiritual).





No. Paul teaches us that it is through Jesus Christ our Lord (vs 25) that we are able to overcome to the point where we walk in light of there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus of Rom 8:1.

As we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ (consistently and constantly remain in Him) we grow up and mature in Him. We mature spiritually as we abide in Him without wavering and turning from Him. And that is not to say that our fleshly instincts do not affect us ... it's just that we are able to see the lusts of our flesh for what they are (just distractions which we can ignore if we so choose).

We have got to get to the point where the life we live as we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ is more vital to us than what the flesh has to offer and not get drawn away from Him. I love the verse in Rom 6 which state what fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed (vs 21). I try to remember that verse when my "natural" instincts crop up. the pleasures of sin which last for a season (Heb 11:25) are not worth the greater riches (Heb 11:16) found in an the fellowship enjoyed in the presence of the Father (imho).
As I have told you before, I do understand your defense of the natural man who cannot discern spiritual things because he has not received the Holy Spirit, I also understand that my proof texts are not going to make you understand them, unless the Holy Ghost within you reveals it to you, but I don't think he will until you deny yourself, from my own 12 years of experience. My discussions in themselves will not reveal the truth without the help of the Holy Ghost within the person. I do believe that you are a dedicated bible student, and that you are one of God's elect that will be with him in heaven. I commend you for your dedication and hope you will continue to discuss the scriptures with me. It is a motivation to keep our minds on the word of our Lord.
 

ForestGreenCook

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I have told you numerous times that I believe the natural man described in 1 Cor 2:14 refers to believers who were carnal.


I believe the born again one who is carnal is limited in his/her ability to comprehend spiritual matters. We must remember that Corinth is located in Greece and the Greeks (according to 1 Cor 1:22) seek after wisdom. We cannot comprehend spiritual matters by means of natural, earthly wisdom. These are the issues Paul was dealing with in the church at Corinth.





In 1 Cor 2:14, Paul is not addressing "baby spiritual things". Paul is addressing the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) which he was able to teach among them that are perfect (1 Cor 2:6) – and again "perfect" refers to more mature, not "perfect" as in 'no sin'.

Paul was unable to teach the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7) to those believers referred to in 1 Cor 2:14 because they were living in light of who they were in Adam (carnal) as opposed to who they were in Christ (spiritual).





No. Paul teaches us that it is through Jesus Christ our Lord (vs 25) that we are able to overcome to the point where we walk in light of there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus of Rom 8:1.

As we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ (consistently and constantly remain in Him) we grow up and mature in Him. We mature spiritually as we abide in Him without wavering and turning from Him. And that is not to say that our fleshly instincts do not affect us ... it's just that we are able to see the lusts of our flesh for what they are (just distractions which we can ignore if we so choose).

We have got to get to the point where the life we live as we abide in our Lord Jesus Christ is more vital to us than what the flesh has to offer and not get drawn away from Him. I love the verse in Rom 6 which state what fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed (vs 21). I try to remember that verse when my "natural" instincts crop up. the pleasures of sin which last for a season (Heb 11:25) are not worth the greater riches (Heb 11:16) found in an the fellowship enjoyed in the presence of the Father (imho).
I know that Jesus, as a man, did keep all of God's commandments and never sinned and I commend you if you are like him and never waver, I, myself cannot make that claim. It reminds me of the two men that were praying and one said "save me Lord for I am a sinner".
 

ForestGreenCook

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There is NO SUCH SCRIPTURE. Calvinism promotes this error, which shows that the Gospel of Calvinism is a false Gospel.
Scripture proves scripture.
Yes, I have provided you with the proper understanding of 1 Cor 2:14. I have explained 1 Cor 2:14 to you several times.

You reject the truth of Scripture because your dogma is in conflict with the truth of the Word of God.

The word "natural" in 1 Cor 2:14 is the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός).

If Paul had used the Greek word physikós (5446: φυσικός) in 1 Cor 2:14, I would agree with you. But Paul used the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός).

The Greek word physikós (5446: φυσικός) means natural, describing the behavior of an unregenerate person, i.e. a nature lacking divine transformation (salvation). However, Paul did not use this word in 1 Cor 2:14.

In 1 Cor 2:14, Paul used the Greek word psyxikós (5591: ψυχικός) and the word describes the natural ("lower") aspect of humanity, i.e. behavior that is "more of earth (carnality) than heaven".

Here is what I explained to you in the "Predestination or free wiil" thread at Post #489:

In 1 Cor 2:6 Paul indicated that he spoke to those who were perfect (i.e. more mature, not "perfect" as in 'no sin') concerning the wisdom of God in a mystery (1 Cor 2:7).
But the natural man spoken of in 1 Cor 2:14 were those who were "brethren" (1 Cor 2:1) who could receive instruction as to Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Cor 2:2). Paul could not instruct these immature believers about the wisdom of God in a mystery so Paul taught them what they could understand. He did not go beyond what they could comprehend.
The "natural man, as described in 1 Cor 2:14" is the born again believer who is still immature and is referred to in 1 Cor 3:1 as a babe in Christ:
1 Corinthians 2:
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.
15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
3:1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
The "natural man" in 1 Cor 2:14 is the same as the "babe in Christ" spoken of 3 verses later in 1 Cor 3:1.
Eph 2 explains how we were as natural beings, void of the Spirit. In verse 5 explains how we became a spiritual being while we were yet spiritually dead, which is the new birth.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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I know that Jesus, as a man, did keep all of God's commandments and never sinned and I commend you if you are like him and never waver, I, myself cannot make that claim. It reminds me of the two men that were praying and one said "save me Lord for I am a sinner".
We all live with our flesh and its never-ending appetite to fulfill fleshly desires. The moment we are born again, God starts working within us. Little by little, as we learn to trust God, we give more of ourselves to Him. We find that the things we hold most needful to us are nothing but distractions which keep us from Him. We let go of those things because we want more of Him. The lust of the flesh that we think is so needful to us becomes less and less influential upon us and we let go of that which is unnecessary in order to have that closer fellowship with God.

It's a lifelong endeavor and none of us will be perfect in this life. But we can develop a closer and closer relationship with God as He helps us let go of those things which hinder us.

And, no, I am not perfect. But I hope and pray I am closer to God today than I was yesterday and I hope and pray and I am closer to God tomorrow than today.



 
Mar 23, 2016
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Eph 2 explains how we were as natural beings, void of the Spirit. In verse 5 explains how we became a spiritual being while we were yet spiritually dead, which is the new birth.
Please understand Eph 2 in light of Eph 1. And Eph 1:13 reveals what occurs at the time a believer is born again:

Ephesians 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

We trusted after we heard the word of truth; then we believed the gospel of salvation which we heard; then we were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise.

Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

We were made alive at Eph 1:13.

Ephesians 2:5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved)

We heard, trusted, believed, and then we were sealed. This does not negate God's grace. Those who ultimately find themselves cast into the lake of fire reject God's grace through their suppressing the truth in unrighteousness (Rom 1:18).



 

CharliRenee

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It is hard to say or to fathom of exactly why it is to be how it is to be. I do know that we are given help from the one who gives us life in the first place. Our souls are His, in the end to do with as He sees fit. Regardless if we believe or not, the outcome is His call. Our Holy redeemer who didn't have to die to save us, did. He gave us a way to take captive our wretched inclinations. We either choose life, with Him or destruction, on our own. I take comfort in focusing on His goodness, on His order, on His compassion and tender mercies. I know that not everyone will know or accept Him, but we all, universally, can choose to just believe.
 

GraceAndTruth

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"God loves everyone" is part of the new age gospel.
If God loves everybody then HE owes Esau an apology, because He hated Esau in the womb (before he could do any right or wrong).
Malachi: 1: Heb 12: 16-17 Rom 9:13
 
U

UnderGrace

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God calls on us to love our enemies.

I will go with what God says rather than a distorted doctrine and lack of understanding on the word "hate" in ancient Hebrew.
 

Scrobulous

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Universalists believe all people will be saved. They often complain against the contrary teaching that people go to hell by posing questions such as:
  • "Do you really believe that God is going to lose most of mankind in hell and that only a few are going to be saved?"
  • "If most go to hell, doesn't that mean that Satan wins since God only gets a few compared to the majority who are lost?"
Of course, these kinds of questions are the wrong ones to ask. What they are doing is using emotionalism to sway someone's beliefs. What they should be asking are questions like these:
  • "What does the Bible teach about damnation?"
  • "Does the Bible tell us if most will be lost or saved?"
  • "Does it tell us that all will be saved?

  • "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. 14"For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it," (Matt. 7:13-14).
  • "For many are called, but few are chosen," (Matt. 22:14).

  • "And He was passing through from one city and village to another, teaching, and proceeding on His way to Jerusalem. 23And someone said to Him, "Lord, are there just a few who are being saved?"

  • And He said to them, 24"Strive to enter by the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25"Once the head of the house gets up and shuts the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying, ‘Lord, open up to us!’ then He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from.’ 26"Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets’; 27and He will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you are from; depart from Me, all you evildoers,'" (Luke 13:22-27).

  • "And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel, "Though the number of the sons of Israel be as the sand of the sea, it is the remnant that will be saved; 28for the Lord will execute His word upon the earth, thoroughly and quickly," (Rom. 9:27)
So how can anyone say God has offered salvation to everyone, the above scriptures make it clear that God has chosen to save some and not all mankind as many believe. What about the Reprobate.

Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

2 Corinthians 13:6 But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.

2 Corinthians 13:7 Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that we should appear approved, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as reprobates.

2 Timothy 3:8 Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

Titus 1:16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.

Do the reprobate choose to be reprobate or has God given them over to their sin nature to continuously sin and deprive themselves of receiving the salvation which Jesus purchased on the cross. It sounds like God didn't give them the gift of faith, so they can't respond by believing the Gospel.

Big questions! Short answer to your title: Yes.
God does not want anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance. 2 Pet 3:9
God grieves for the unrepentant. What did Jesus say? I wanted to gather you all, but you wouldn’t let me! Luke 13:34.
God gives man freewill. He calls everyone. His spirit works in every heart. Some choose to listen, some reject and this over an entire lifetime. The ones who choose to listen are called the chosen. Of course God knows who will choose to believe and who will not, but he doesn’t coerce. He woos, but like any lover, he is not always successful.
Regarding the maths, there is evidence that most will not be saved. This is not a victory for satan, who will end up in the lake of fire. I personally believe the lost will be destroyed and this will be a great sorrow to God.
As for the scriptures that talk about God ‘giving people over’ this is essentially seeing things from God’s point of view. He allows people to follow their own sinful inclinations. He does not send the inclinations or have any part in them. It is a description of God allowing people to make their own decisions. Some feel this is cruel of God. But if you want all to be saved, you have to force everyone to obedience. This eliminates free will. If you do this you eliminate love, because if love is forced it is not love at all. For love to be love, there MUST be freedom.
Some say God can do anything. He can’t. He is constrained by the logic of his own decisions. God wanted love and this inevitably means there must be a hell.
 

GraceAndTruth

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God does not want anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance. 2 Pet 3:9

That is a misquote. 2 Peter 3:9 says God is patient towards YOU, now wishing any to perish but all to come to repentance.
Peter's letter is to BELIEVERS who have tolerated false teachers and prophets, mockers etc (chapters 2 & 3), and God wishes those believers to come to repentance so they will not perish in their apostasy. True beleivers will repent and turn from that evil but those believers who do not and continue down the broad road will perish.

Yes, some 'believers' do perish
Matthew 7:21-23 New King James Version (NKJV)
I Never Knew You
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

Therer is not one book in the New Testament that is not addressed to believers specifically.
Study with the Hermeneutic method, & use CONTEXT.
 

ForestGreenCook

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We all live with our flesh and its never-ending appetite to fulfill fleshly desires. The moment we are born again, God starts working within us. Little by little, as we learn to trust God, we give more of ourselves to Him. We find that the things we hold most needful to us are nothing but distractions which keep us from Him. We let go of those things because we want more of Him. The lust of the flesh that we think is so needful to us becomes less and less influential upon us and we let go of that which is unnecessary in order to have that closer fellowship with God.

It's a lifelong endeavor and none of us will be perfect in this life. But we can develop a closer and closer relationship with God as He helps us let go of those things which hinder us.

And, no, I am not perfect. But I hope and pray I am closer to God today than I was yesterday and I hope and pray and I am closer to God tomorrow than today.
I agree with your assessment. When God first outs his Holy Spirit within us, we then have the ability to began to discern spiritual things. Along with the Holy Spirit comes faith, which is a fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5). The Holy Ghost within us begans to reveal a little here and a little there, line upon line and line upon line. Like you said, the more we learn of Jesus and the Father, the older we grow in faith, the less we are tempted, but we will never reach total victory over our sinful nature until he changes us at that last day.
 

ForestGreenCook

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Big questions! Short answer to your title: Yes.
God does not want anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance. 2 Pet 3:9
God grieves for the unrepentant. What did Jesus say? I wanted to gather you all, but you wouldn’t let me! Luke 13:34.
God gives man freewill. He calls everyone. His spirit works in every heart. Some choose to listen, some reject and this over an entire lifetime. The ones who choose to listen are called the chosen. Of course God knows who will choose to believe and who will not, but he doesn’t coerce. He woos, but like any lover, he is not always successful.
Regarding the maths, there is evidence that most will not be saved. This is not a victory for satan, who will end up in the lake of fire. I personally believe the lost will be destroyed and this will be a great sorrow to God.
As for the scriptures that talk about God ‘giving people over’ this is essentially seeing things from God’s point of view. He allows people to follow their own sinful inclinations. He does not send the inclinations or have any part in them. It is a description of God allowing people to make their own decisions. Some feel this is cruel of God. But if you want all to be saved, you have to force everyone to obedience. This eliminates free will. If you do this you eliminate love, because if love is forced it is not love at all. For love to be love, there MUST be freedom.
Some say God can do anything. He can’t. He is constrained by the logic of his own decisions. God wanted love and this inevitably means there must be a hell.
I think you may be taking 2 Pet 3:9 out of context. To find out who Peter is talking to we have to go back to 2 Pet 1:1 - To them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. Peter is reminding them, when they sin to come to repentance so they might not "perish" (be separated from their fellowship with God) Peter even includes himself in his warning to those of like precious faith by using the word "us-ward". Ps 53:2-3 - God saw by his foreknowledge that non would seek him and that none was good, no, not one. That is because all mankind is born into this world spiritually dead. That is why God choose an elect people before the foundation of the world ( Eph 1:4) and that is why he had Jesus to cleanse them of their sins on the cross, (John 6:39) and that is why he had to regenerate them and give them the indwelling of the Holy Spirit,(Eph 2, especially verse 5), so that he would have someone to praise and worship him. Believing, repenting, confessing, accepting etc. comes after regeneration and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. I believe the scriptures teach that God did indeed give man the freedom to choose how he wants to live his life here on earth, but his eternal salvation is by the grace of God, without the help of mans choice and that salvation took place on the cross.
 

ForestGreenCook

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God does not want anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance. 2 Pet 3:9

That is a misquote. 2 Peter 3:9 says God is patient towards YOU, now wishing any to perish but all to come to repentance.
Peter's letter is to BELIEVERS who have tolerated false teachers and prophets, mockers etc (chapters 2 & 3), and God wishes those believers to come to repentance so they will not perish in their apostasy. True beleivers will repent and turn from that evil but those believers who do not and continue down the broad road will perish.

Yes, some 'believers' do perish
Matthew 7:21-23 New King James Version (NKJV)
I Never Knew You
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

Therer is not one book in the New Testament that is not addressed to believers specifically.
Study with the Hermeneutic method, & use CONTEXT.
I think that you can get a better understanding of 2 Pet 3:9 by reading my post #598.
 

ForestGreenCook

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"God loves everyone" is part of the new age gospel.
If God loves everybody then HE owes Esau an apology, because He hated Esau in the womb (before he could do any right or wrong).
Malachi: 1: Heb 12: 16-17 Rom 9:13
I will Amen that.