Discussions with a Calvinist

Discussion with Teresa
Round 4

Of course I answered your question, you just do not like the answer.
Let me ramble a bit on choices to explain my answer

What does Romans say about it?

Rom 5:10-12
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For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
And not only [so], but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; men, for that all have sinned:
 

Even God does not have unfettered free will. He can not violate His nature.
All of our choices are governed by our preferences. Man will always choose what he prefers.

The fact is that all choices are made within a restricted set of circumstances

A man jumping off the empire state building can not exercise free will half way down.

Did you chose your sex? Did your chose your parents? Did you choose your country or city of birth? Did you chose your intelligence?

All of these things were predestined by your creator
He set up for you that parameters of the decisions and choices that will be available to you.

He could have had you born in India to Hindu parents in a low class. You never would have had an opportunity to go to school or to make the life choices you make today. You may never have heard the gospel to be saved.

Acts 17
26From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.

All of our choices are governed by our preferences. Our preferences are part of the creative process of the Father

Have you read the twin studies?

I read one that blew me away

Two brothers separated at birth. both had the same IQ, Both the same level of education, both loved firefighting (one was a professional and one a volunteer), both married women similar in appearance and both wives were named Jean. Both men had the same number of kids...and both drove red cars. They both freely chose what they preferred.

Now these studies are done to show us the effects of genetics.
I know the designer of genetics. And His name is Lord of Lords and King of Kings. He is the great "I AM"

God has designed each of us in such a way that we will have preferences that will lead us to certain choices.

Because of the fall men will never seek God

Rom 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

In order for man to choose Christ he must have a preference for Christ. But the fall removed that preference. Man is spiritually dead.He can not choose life

Jhn 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Note here that Jesus says a man cannot SEE the kingdom of God. Man can not desire or choose what he can not see
So God gives those that are His a New heart.

Eze 36:26 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.

God then gives us a heart that will desire Him, a heart with a preference for God . A heart that can see Him and desires to choose Him...

Our will was put in bondage in Eden. The will we have is the will of Adam( Gen 5:3 ) . Only the new birth gives us a truly free will. The desire and the will to choose Christ

I find it so interesting that people resent the idea that God has foreordained our eternity.

If our father so loved us to foreordain our present, how much more important is our eternity?

Some say Calvinists do not believe in free will.

Actually we strongly believes in true free will

The free will of Adam was lost in the fall. Adam (and ours though him) lost one set of choice options.

Psa 14:2-3
The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, [and] seek God.

They are all gone aside, they are [all] together become filthy: [there is] none that doeth good, no, not one.

Jer 4:22 For my people [is] foolish, they have not known me; they [are] sottish children, and they have none understanding: they [are] wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Why?

It is because a spiritually dead man cannot freely choose spiritual life. He needs spiritual CPR. NO, we need a whole heart transplant

Eze 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:

THEN the free will that God gave to Adam is restored.
 

We read in Genesis 3 ( in the account of the fall) Look what happened to the relationship between God the Father and Adam after the fall

God was seeking Adam.Adam was not seeking God

Gen 3:7-10 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where [art] thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I [was] naked; and I hid myself.

That is the natural response of man to God since the fall

They had the most intimate relationship with God before they sinned, yet they stopped desiring fellowship with God once they fell.

In the same way man tries to make his own solution and covering, He does not seek out God.He seeks his own solution ( apron of leaves.)

Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

They thought they could save themselves.they had the solution they liked.

But it was not Gods solution, not one of their choice. They were now totally dependant on their "free will " , their dominion was gone. They hide and covered they did not seek and find .

THAT is the condition of carnal unregenerate man.

He can make choices. But he will never choose God. He prefers to be a god to himself.
He will make insufficient choices that do not please God nor cover their nakedness

Unregenerate man will choose the lesser of two evils. BUT until he has that heart transplant he will never choose Gods solution.

He will never freely repent and believe . God must find Him and cover him in the blood . Man will never act first .

Man does have "control" He will choose as he will from the options that are available to him .

He will always chose what pleasures or excites him. He will always chose in what he sees as his best interest.

I will remind you that scripture is clear. Everything the unsaved does is sin to God , no matter how the world sees it.

So the unsaved can choose between bad and worse in the eyes of God. But it is always his choice.
It is not until God acts that man can and will choose to repent and believe .

John1;12-13

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, [even] to them that believe on his name:

Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

Let me ask you something.

At the very moment that you believed did you stand there and weigh your choice on a scale of personal benefits? Or did you at that MOMENT desire Christ above all else (I am not talking about previous times, but at the moment of your salvation?)

One of my favorite verses is

Blessed is the man whom thou choosest (election) and causest to approach unto thee" (irresistible grace, Psalm 65:4)
 

because we are most blessed

I have clearly told you in the last mail that scripture says that men are held responsible for their acts, even foreordained choices, because they are freely chosen


BCBSR Reponse

Teresa,

You say you answered the question but what's your answer? Here's the question again:

Does God hold people accountable for things they have no control over? A) Yes B) No

Please answer "A" or "B" (or "yes" or "no"). You spoke on free will, but the question isn't about free will. In fact the words "free" and "will" are not even in the question.

Yes I know Calvism teaches that a person is born-again before coming to faith in Christ. That is what I said it taught on my web pages. And it seems while you had previously taken offense that I had misrepresented Calvinism, your responses continue to affirm that what I have written is in fact an accurate portrayal of Calvinism. As for my response to Calvinistic concepts of the order of faith and regeneration see:

Faith and Regeneration
http://www.bcbsr.com/topics/fborn.html and

Faith a Gift?
http://www.bcbsr.com/topics/faithagift.html

Good Biblestudying to you,

Steve Amato



The Berean Christian Bible Study Resources Jul 29,2015