Predeterminism and free will

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ForestGreenCook

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2018
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#42
I'd like to take this brief opportunity to say thank you to the CC users who contribute to my threads in a kind and gentle way.
I've started a number of threads that often address deep and complex questions, so thank you to those CC members who take the time to respond thoughtfully.

My question in this thread concerns predeterminism and free will.

My reading of the Bible is that everybody who will receive salvation has their name written in the book of life - right or wrong?

If this is true, and if God already knows who will reconcile with him through Jesus, how does this idea tally with free will?

Is free will Biblical?
God has given us a free will to choose how we want to live our lives as we sojourn here in this world, but our eternal deliverance is by God's sovereign grace, without the help of mankind.

God, by his foreknowledge, saw that no one would seek him, no, not one. Psalms 53:2. The natural man will not receive any of the things that are of the Spirit, because he cannot discern them, and thinks they are foolishness. 1 Cor 2:14. God transforms us by giving us a new heart, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We do not accept or receive any thing that is of a spiritual nature until after we have been born again,
 

ForestGreenCook

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2018
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#43
Bottom line, God had no foreknowledge of you as a son until you believed the gospel of Christ. That’s Bible.
It never ceases to amaze me how some people discredits God's ability.
 

ForestGreenCook

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2018
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#44
God has given man the freedom of choice and has chosen to operate with man in that time frame.
God has given mankind a free choice as to how mankind wants to live their lives as they sojourn here on earth, but has not given mankind a choice in being born again, with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. he also has not given mankind a choice in his eternal deliverance.
 
Apr 2, 2020
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#45
It seems to me this whole question is based on a misread of Romans 5. The very idea that we do not, for some reason, have the ability to choose the good and refuse evil is an entirely foreign concept to the Bible and negates any form of justice God could possibly apply. If, instead, God is choosing for us then God becomes the author of evil, not simply in an abstract sense but in every single deed that is ever commited. And then He punishes those who through no fault of their own committed sins, instead being the hapless victims of providence. The very idea is anathema to a God that loves sinners to such a degree that He would give His son for them, so desperate for their salvation that He would suffer the injust and ignomious death by crucifixion simply to give those who would take salvation a path by which they will not be eternally doomed. Yet still, in order to preserve some myth of absolute sovereignty many would instead preach a God entirely devoid of love and justice...or at least whose love and justice are so divorced from common conceptions of them that they are completely unrecognizable.
 
Apr 21, 2020
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#46
God has given mankind a free choice as to how mankind wants to live their lives as they sojourn here on earth, but has not given mankind a choice in being born again, with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. he also has not given mankind a choice in his eternal deliverance.
So we don't come to God through free will, but because he selects us?
 

ForestGreenCook

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2018
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#47
So we don't come to God through free will, but because he selects us?
That's what Paul says in Eph 2. While we were yet spiritually dead, thinking that all things of the Spirit is foolishness, God quickened us.
 
Oct 25, 2018
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#48
It seems to me this whole question is based on a misread of Romans 5. The very idea that we do not, for some reason, have the ability to choose the good and refuse evil is an entirely foreign concept to the Bible and negates any form of justice God could possibly apply. If, instead, God is choosing for us then God becomes the author of evil, not simply in an abstract sense but in every single deed that is ever commited. And then He punishes those who through no fault of their own committed sins, instead being the hapless victims of providence. The very idea is anathema to a God that loves sinners to such a degree that He would give His son for them, so desperate for their salvation that He would suffer the injust and ignomious death by crucifixion simply to give those who would take salvation a path by which they will not be eternally doomed. Yet still, in order to preserve some myth of absolute sovereignty many would instead preach a God entirely devoid of love and justice...or at least whose love and justice are so divorced from common conceptions of them that they are completely unrecognizable.
Romans 8:5-9 tells us the lost person is at enmity(has an ill-will towards) with God. They will not choose God in their unregenerate state because they are hostile towards God. Their fallen will, enslaved to sin and Satan, precludes them from choosing God. They hate Him in this fallen state, and cannot and will not, choose Him.
 
Apr 2, 2020
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#49
Romans 8:5-9 tells us the lost person is at enmity(has an ill-will towards) with God. They will not choose God in their unregenerate state because they are hostile towards God. Their fallen will, enslaved to sin and Satan, precludes them from choosing God. They hate Him in this fallen state, and cannot and will not, choose Him.
While there are individual passages that can be read in isolation as supporting such a notion, the Bible as a whole supports the idea that we are able to choose what is right and wrong. Romans stands not as a theological treatise but instead as an address to a divided church, divided along the lines of gentile and jew. To then extend its argument to anthropologic truth is to go beyond its scope. Instead we must take the whole thrust of the Old and New Testament which teaches that not only are we able to make choices that affect our salvation, but that those choices matter. Joshua was told to choose this day, and so are we. Are there factors that get in our way? Sure, but that doesn't negate the basic fact that it ultimately is a choice on our behalf whether we follow God or follow belial, and justice is served depending on our selection.
 
Oct 25, 2018
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#50
Romans 8:5-9 tells us the lost person is at enmity(has an ill-will towards) with God. They will not choose God in their unregenerate state because they are hostile towards God. Their fallen will, enslaved to sin and Satan, precludes them from choosing God. They hate Him in this fallen state, and cannot and will not, choose Him.
Please send me a new PM.
 
Oct 25, 2018
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#51
While there are individual passages that can be read in isolation as supporting such a notion, the Bible as a whole supports the idea that we are able to choose what is right and wrong. Romans stands not as a theological treatise but instead as an address to a divided church, divided along the lines of gentile and jew. To then extend its argument to anthropologic truth is to go beyond its scope. Instead we must take the whole thrust of the Old and New Testament which teaches that not only are we able to make choices that affect our salvation, but that those choices matter. Joshua was told to choose this day, and so are we. Are there factors that get in our way? Sure, but that doesn't negate the basic fact that it ultimately is a choice on our behalf whether we follow God or follow belial, and justice is served depending on our selection.
Joshua spoke to the Jews to choose this day, not all ppl indiscriminately.
The choice was between the idols their fathers served or the gods of the Amorites, the land they were living in.

Context is king.
 
Dec 28, 2016
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#52
Romans 8:5-9 tells us the lost person is at enmity(has an ill-will towards) with God. They will not choose God in their unregenerate state because they are hostile towards God. Their fallen will, enslaved to sin and Satan, precludes them from choosing God. They hate Him in this fallen state, and cannot and will not, choose Him.
Yes, Paul is preaching the inability of man in Romans 8. This is the death knell passage to those who preach “all men are drawn to Christ since the cross!” via misuse and misunderstanding of John 12:32. Really? If that nonsense is true, why bother preaching?

Jesus was saying to those Greeks who came to him in essence all men everywhere will be drawn, not just Jews, but all types of men, some from every tribe and nation. In other words the Gospel would be preached, those ordained to eternal life will believe, Acts 13:48.

God does not draw every single human, that is an apparent fact. Paul shows that what Jesus said was still true after the cross, no man is able to come to him; John 6:44; Romans 8.
 

TMarcum

New member
May 26, 2020
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0
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#54
I'd like to take this brief opportunity to say thank you to the CC users who contribute to my threads in a kind and gentle way.
I've started a number of threads that often address deep and complex questions, so thank you to those CC members who take the time to respond thoughtfully.

My question in this thread concerns predeterminism and free will.

My reading of the Bible is that everybody who will receive salvation has their name written in the book of life - right or wrong?

If this is true, and if God already knows who will reconcile with him through Jesus, how does this idea tally with free will?

Is free will Biblical?
I believe that everybody who will be saved, does have their name written in the book of life. I also believe that this book was written before creation (Rev 13:8). But I do not believe it was predestined by God who will be saved and who will be lost. Then the next logical question would be, how then was the book written from the foundation of the world?

Revelation 13:8
All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.


According to Peter, if we read this passage without rightly dividing the word of truth, we may be led to think the elect were chosen according to the foreknowledge of God, leading us to believe it is predestination.

1 Peter 1:2
Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

I do not believe this to be the case. I simply believe that God is omniscient, knowing everything. Jesus knew that Peter would betray him, before hand. Not merely because of prophecy, but because God is all knowing. There are hundres of examples in the bible, that demonstrated that God knew occurrences and events would occur beforehand. I will say that God knew before creation, every aspect of things that occur in this lifetime.

When God created the heavens and the earth, he set things into motion. The evening and the morning was the 1st day (Genesis 1:5). But before this, there was no time. Time is a characteristic of creation, along with dimension, matter and space. But God is not limited to time. We can think of the span of time as being inside a clear bubble. From the time that God created the heaves and earth until the day he destroys everything and declares time to be no more; being inside the bubble. If we could look at this whole span of time as being in a bubble, then God is on the outside of this bubble, looking inside. He is able to look inside on the left side and see when he created everything. He is also able to look on the right side and see it all end. God is not limited to time. He transcends time. He has already seen time come to an end. He has already seen the earth melt with fervent heat and the heavens depart as a scroll, being rolled together. God has already seen everything play out.

That's a lot to digest, but God did not decide beforehand who would be saved. He simply knows already. This is what Peter meant by foreknowledge.

But I am not suggesting that God does not have capability to make everybody serve him. He definitely could if he chose to do so. But God wants us to choose to serve him. I love the verse (John 3:16), but to understand verse 16, we have to better understand (John 3:17 & 18). Yes, it is not God's will that any should perish. But those who do perish is not because the Son condemned them. The verse 17 teaches us that he was not sent into the world to condemn the world. But in verse 18, we learn that those that are condemned are condemned already simply because they do not believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

So yes, we must choose God or we choose to be comdemned. And just because God already knows what our choices in life will be, does not mean that we know. We do not know if we will be alive to take our next breath. So we must make every choice we make count. We may not have the oppurtunity to choose later. Our soul may be required of us this very night (Luke 12:20).

John 3:
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

So, by knowing that God is all knowing, it helps us to understand (Jeremiah 1:5).

Jeremiah 1:5
Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.


God already knew what man that Jeremiah would become. He already saw him live out his whole life span. So God is able to make the claim, "before I formed thee in the belly, I knew thee. And yes, he did sanctify him and separate him before he came out of the womb. God revealed to Jeremiah his purpose before hand, as well as many other prophets. He worked with King David in a similar way. The same with Jonah.

God may or may not reveal things about our life, but one thing is sure; God knows our hearts. He knows who his children are. But the fearful thing is, we do not know what tomorrow holds.

Today is the day of salvation. In the day you hear his voice, harden not your hearts (Hebrews 3:15).
 
Apr 2, 2020
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#55
Joshua spoke to the Jews to choose this day, not all ppl indiscriminately.
The choice was between the idols their fathers served or the gods of the Amorites, the land they were living in.

Context is king.
Context is key, but the whole of the Bible testifies to man's ability to choose. It is only by reading the doctrine of inability into a handful of passages-namely Romans- that one can derive such a doctrine, and it is only by ignoring the constant pleas and exhortations for the jews to return to YHWH that such a doctrine can be established. There is an entirely disproportionate weight given to the writings of Paul in the last 4 centuries of western Christian thought that has created orthodoxies that are not fitting with the whole testament of Scripture.
 

notuptome

Senior Member
May 17, 2013
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#56
You are misrepresenting me using your own reasoning, not mine. Was Jesus a child of wrath? Yes, but undeserved wrath. Many of my sins were part of my preparation for the future. I would not be me apart from them. I would be more of the self-righteous pharisee type if God did not humble me by them And I would have a twisted view of you and others without them.
Jesus was not a child of wrath. Jesus was born without sin. Jesus took our sin upon Himself to make atonement for our sin. If Jesus had been a child of wrath He could not have atoned for the sins of mankind.

For the cause of Christ
Roger
 

notuptome

Senior Member
May 17, 2013
14,687
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#57
Romans 8:5-9 tells us the lost person is at enmity(has an ill-will towards) with God. They will not choose God in their unregenerate state because they are hostile towards God. Their fallen will, enslaved to sin and Satan, precludes them from choosing God. They hate Him in this fallen state, and cannot and will not, choose Him.
The delicate balance between sin and ability to respond to the gospel. Certainly Adam had a choice in the garden. Part of the curse is that men must choose. God gives the ability if you read John 1. Every man is lighted by God and the Holy Spirit. While many turn from the light it is not God that turns their heart back to darkness but the will of man.

The real question is that if you have not experienced the John 16:8-11 Holy Spirit are you really saved?

For the cause of Christ
Roger
 
Apr 3, 2019
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#58
If there was no free will then this would make no sense:

(Deu 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live)
 

NOV25

Active member
Nov 23, 2019
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#59
Charis: ...the divine influence on the heart and it's reflection in the life.