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Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives

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Steve_Jorns1
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 362

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Posted: Jan 27, 2006 1:31:34 AM
God will draw us to His word so that we may meditate on it day and night as He reveals truth to us. Yes we ask Him for wisdom and understanding but it is He who draws us to His word to begin with. [quote] From:  [i]Adlemi Sotnas &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i] Reply-To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] Subject:  [i]Re: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives[/i] Date:  [i]Thu, 26 Jan 2006 07:35:10 -0700[/i] [quote]Truly Steve, God will draw us nigh straight to Him and He did this to Moses, to Jeremiah, and to Pual and to others. God will not draw us nigh to anything else like the bible. God will let us read the bible, but the explanation, the right one, we have to ask from God personally. Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; wrote: &gt; We only come to Him because He draws us, He quickens us &amp; He stirs us as He said He will draw all men unto Him. &gt; &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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adlemsot
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 290

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Posted: Jan 27, 2006 2:41:09 PM
.can you please consider these bible verses which the Lord Jesus uttered directly to His disciples and try to see if these verses contradict not with what you are saying below?   John 6:44.  No man can come to me, exceept [b]the Father which hath sent Me draw him:[/b] and I will raise him up at the last day.            45.  It is written in the prophets, [b]And they shall be all taught of God.[/b] [b]Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me.[/b]   John 5:39.  Search the Scripptures; [b]for in them ye think ye have eternal life:[/b] and they are they which testify of Me.              40.  [b]And ye will not come to Me, that ye might have life.[/b] [b][i]Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i][/b] wrote: [quote]God will draw us to His word so that we may meditate on it day and night as He reveals truth to us. Yes we ask Him for wisdom and understanding but it is He who draws us to His word to begin with. [quote] From:  Adlemi Sotnas Reply-To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org Subject:  Re: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives Date:  Thu, 26 Jan 2006 07:35:10 -0700 &gt; Truly Steve, God will draw us nigh straight to Him and He did this to Moses, to Jeremiah, and to Pual and to others. God will not draw us nigh to anything else like the bible. God will let us read the bible, but the explanation, the right one, we have to ask from God personally. &gt; &gt; &gt; Steve Jorns wrote: &gt; &gt; We only come to Him because He draws us, He quickens us &amp; He stirs us as He said He will draw all men unto Him. &gt; &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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adlemsot
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 290

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Posted: Jan 30, 2006 11:41:01 AM
[quote]We are all aware in the word of God there are so many contradictions and you have witnessed that in the past from all thepostings made in this forum. It is only the Lord who can teach you what you are trying to prove and you know that. You can quote all the verses pertaining to it and vice-versa but still it is only Lord Jesus will give you the conviction. It is up to you now how to reconcile all the verses you have quoted thru the Holy Spirit guidance.[/quote] Does this mean bro. Art that you, too, are willing to wait for the Lord Jesus to give us the answer for what Steve is raising in this issue of free will? Are we already one in this belief?
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art.barga
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 290

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Posted: Jan 30, 2006 12:12:36 PM
That is for you to answer. If we have received the same spirit you will know what I mean and you will not have to ask me. ----- Original Message ----- From: "adlemsot" &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; To: &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; Sent: Monday, January 30, 2006 7:05 AM Subject: RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives [quote] &gt; We are all aware in the word of God there are so many contradictions and you have witnessed that in the past from all thepostings made in this forum.[/quote] It is only the Lord who can teach you what you are trying to prove and you know that. You can quote all the verses pertaining to it and vice-versa but still it is only Lord Jesus will give you the conviction. It is up to you now how to reconcile all the verses you have quoted thru the Holy Spirit guidance. [quote] Does this mean bro. Art that you, too, are willing to wait for the Lord Jesus to give us the answer for what Steve is raising in this issue of free[/quote] will? Are we already one in this belief? [quote] [/quote]
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aidatcortez
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 138

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Posted: Jan 30, 2006 1:50:34 PM
Bro. Art, In your recent postings, you have opened your mouth boldly in making known the mystery of the gospel. AMEN. Sis. Aida
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Steve
Joined Oct 27, 2005
Posts: 74
Location:Chicago

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Posted: Jan 31, 2006 2:01:18 AM
If one insists that fallen man, in and of himself, has the ability to understand spiritual matters like the gospel message and can will to be born of God, then one does so standing on his own wisdom and understanding. Psalms 14:2 "The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God." Verse 3...no, not one." Repeated in Romans 3:11. If it weren't for HIM, the wide road would be the only road. Thank you LORD for choosing and causing your chosen to approach you. Truly, You and You ALONE are worthy of ALL GLORY!
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Steve
Joined Oct 27, 2005
Posts: 74
Location:Chicago

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Posted: Feb 01, 2006 2:25:28 AM
Being elect of God is dependent solely on God. God ordains His chosen to bring forth fruit. What is His criteria for whom He chooses? It is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God. Because of His mercy, He has saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit
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Steve
Joined Oct 27, 2005
Posts: 74
Location:Chicago

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Posted: Feb 02, 2006 2:35:04 AM
Genesis 20:13 "And it came to pass, when [b]God caused me[/b] to wander from my father's house..." Numbers 16:7 "and put fire therein, and put incense in them before the LORD tomorrow: and it shall be that [b]the man whom the LORD doth [/b][b]choose, he shall be holy[/b]: ye take too much upon you, ye sons of Levi." Joshua 11:20 "For [b]it was of the LORD to harden their hearts[/b], [b]that[/b] [b]they should come against Israel[/b] in battle, [b]that he might [/b][b]destroy them [/b]utterly, and that they might have no favor, but that he might destroy them, as the LORD commanded Moses." 1Samuel 25:26 "Now therefore, my lord, as the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, seeing [b]the LORD hath withholden thee from[/b] coming to shed blood, and from avenging thyself with thine own hand..." 1Kings 20:42 "And he said unto him, [b]Thus saith the LORD[/b], Because thou hast let go out of thy hand [b]a man whom I appointed to utter destruction[/b]..." Jeremiah 31:3 "[b]The LORD [/b]hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, [b]I have loved thee with an everlasting love[/b]: [b]therefore with [/b][b]loving-kindness have I drawn thee[/b]." Daniel 4:17 "...to the intent that the living may know that [b]the Most High [/b]ruleth in the kingdom of men, and [b]giveth it to whomsoever he will[/b], and setteth up over it the basest of men."
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Steve
Joined Oct 27, 2005
Posts: 74
Location:Chicago

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Posted: Feb 03, 2006 2:11:38 AM
Rightly so Paul says in 1Corinthians 15:10 "But [b]by the grace of God[/b], I[b] am what I am[/b]: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all: yet [b]not I[/b], [b]but the grace of God [/b]which was with me." Paul recognizes that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. James 1:18 "[b]Of his own will begat he us [/b]with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures." Again, not our own will. Revelation 17:17 "For [b]God hath put in their hearts to fulfill his will[/b], and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled." All Glory to Him!
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adlemsot
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 290

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Posted: Feb 03, 2006 5:15:43 PM
Steve wrote: _________ Paul recognizes that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. _________   You seem to insinuate here that we must not be boastful of our doing, do I perceive you right? But what about salvation, what for did God save Paul? With Paul doing nothing at all, will God still save him?  
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Steve_Jorns1
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 362

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Posted: Feb 03, 2006 9:15:29 PM
Adlemi, It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world. [quote] From:  [i]Adlemi Sotnas &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i] Reply-To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] Subject:  [i]RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives[/i] Date:  [i]Fri, 03 Feb 2006 02:15:45 -0700[/i] [quote]Steve wrote: _________    Paul recognizes that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. _________         You seem to insinuate here that we must not be boastful of our doing, do I perceive you right? But what about salvation, what for did God save Paul? With Paul doing nothing at all, will God still save him?   [/quote] [/quote]
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art.barga
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 290

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Posted: Feb 03, 2006 9:58:36 PM
[b]Isn&#8217;t it the will of God our Savior is for all of to be saved and to know the truth as it is written in;[/b] 1 Timothy 2:3 &#8220;For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 1 Timothy 2:4 &#8220;[b]Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.[/b] [b]If our Almighty God Jesus Christ did not give us the free will, He would just have imposed/applied His will to everyone for after all He wanted everyone to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. In the same token, everyone will be chosen but it is also written;[/b] Matthew 22:14 &#8220;For many are called, but few are chosen. [b]It really appears that one should will to come to God before you will be saved  as in[/b] Romans 10:9 &#8220;That if thou [b][u]shalt confess with thy mouth[/u][/b] the Lord Jesus, and [b][u]shalt believe in thine heart [/u][/b]that God hath raised him from the dead, [b][u]thou shalt be saved[/u][/b]. [b]The act of believing is a prerogative to will in coming to God&#8217;s salvation(chosen), He has given everyone this choice and He should not have given this commandment if He has taken away free will: [/b] Luke 11:9 &#8220;And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Luke 11:10 &#8220;For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. [b]And you have to convert and humble yourself by your choice like in:[/b] Matthew 18:3 &#8220;And said, Verily I say unto you, [b][u]Except ye be converted[/u][/b], and [b][u]become as little children,[/u][/b] ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Mark 10:15 &#8220;Verily I say unto you, [b][u]Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child[/u][/b], he shall not enter therein. Acts 3:19 &#8220;[b][u]Repent ye therefore, and be converted[/u][/b], that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord. Psalms 69:32 &#8220;[b][u]The humble shall see this[/u][/b], and [b]be glad: and your heart shall live that [u]seek God[/u][/b]. [b]Let us take the case of Saul who persecutes those who believe in Jesus, but he was predestinated of God to be one of His chosen. Lord Jesus has shown His power and glory by making Saul as His persecutor but in the end he became one the Apostles of Lord Jesus. When he fell on the ground on his way to Damascus, he asked who is He speaking and the Lord replied that it is Him the one that he persecutes. He believed and that is an act of freewill, to accept and be converted when in fact, since the beginning he tried to go after those believers of Lord Jesus Christ. He really hates the protagonist that is why he went after the followers of Lord Jesus Christ. And what about Judas, he started to be an ally of Lord Jesus and end-up betraying Him. These are the circumstances the Lord Jesus designed for Saul and Judas that they must undergo as to the foreknowledge of the Almighty God.[/b] [b]This is the very good example of what he meant in commandments;[/b] Romans 9:21[b] &#8220;[/b]Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?[b][/b] Jeremiah 18:6 &#8220;O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. [b]But digest this carefully via the Spirit of the Lord in you[/b] Jeremiah 18:10 &#8220;If it do evil in my sight, that it [b][u]obey not my voice[/u][/b], then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them. [b]This means that the clay may not obey meaning it has a freewill to obey or not(Jeremiah 18:6-10 is referring to Israel-the clay-the chosen people of God).[/b] [b]This is to show is power for His glorification. Look what He did to Paul, He made him His antagonist, for others to show His power and by that He was glorified by those who knew Paul. They found an edification by what He did to clays(Paul) and Judas-for the testament to be fulfilled. [/b] [b]Chosen will never be boastful of his will to convert as written in;[/b] Ephesians 2:5 &#8220;Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) Ephesians 2:8 &#8220;For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Ephesians 2:9  &#8220;Not of works, lest [b]any man should boast[/b]. [b]You were saved not of yourself neither by your works, but how Abraham by his works he was justified by God as written;[/b] James 2:21  &#8220;Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? [b]And faith with works is perfect as mentioned; [/b] James 2:22 &#8220;Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? [b]Being  supported by[/b] James 2:17 &#8220;Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. [b]So the works being referred to in Ephesians 2:9 is different from the works being mentioned in James chapter 2. (That will be touched in our other discussions thru the will and revelation of God.). Every verse should fall to where they are intended to and it does not mean when it was mentioned in a certain verse it is also has the same meaning or connotations as the former verse you came into. The word of truth must be divided rightly as commanded in;[/b] 2 Timothy 2:15[b]  &#8220;[/b]Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. Isaiah 28:10 &#8220;For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:[b] [/b] [b]For by grace(the plan of salvation together with Christ when He fulfilled His testament and being our model or elder brother via crucifixion) we were saved thru faith, it is the gift (inheritance He promised to Abraham) of God. We hoped for things have yet to come(faith)  [/b] Ephesians 1:7[b] &#8220;[/b]In whom [b][u]we have redemption through his blood[/u][/b], the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his [b]grace;[/b] Ephesians 1&#8221;11[b] &#8220;[/b]In whom also we have obtained an inhritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: Ephesians 1&#8221;13 &#8220;In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth[b][u], the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed[/u][/b], ye [b][u]were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,[/u][/b] Ephesians 2:5 &#8220;Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)[b][u][/u][/b] [b]And when you recognized the one true God, boasting will never come into your mind because when you found Lord Jesus Christ, His spirit will make its abode in you as written;[/b] 1 Corinthians 6:19  &#8220;What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?  1Corinthians 6:20 &#8220;For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. [b]And the fruits of Holy Spirit is as written;[/b] Ephesians 5:9 &#8220;(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Galatians 5:22 &#8220;But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Galatians 5:23 &#8220;Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. [b]Thus the confirmation of Lord Jesus Himself that one should will to come to claim the inheritance offered.[/b] John 6:37[b] &#8220;[/b]All that the Father giveth me [b]SHALL COME TO ME[/b]; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. Matthew 11:28 &#8220;[b]Come unto me[/b], all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. [b]Let us not be selective with the words of God to suit what we believe. It should not be our intellect and feelings must prevail it should be the truth in the word of God.[/b] [b]And brethren let us all remember this;[/b] [b] [/b]Galatians 6:26 &#8220;Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another. [b]No one among His children will dare or intentionally take the glory of his Father for they know this only belongs to Him. For children of God do not have anything to boast for what he/she has about spiritual things because he is aware that all came from Lord Jesus. They are just vessels/instrument/speaker systems in conveying the will and revelation of the most high and merciful God (Jesus Christ). [/b] [b]Finally, for me by this posting I am putting into rest this issue and let[/b] [b]the spirit of God work in us[/b].  
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Steve_Jorns1
Joined Jul 21, 2005
Posts: 362

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Posted: Feb 04, 2006 1:40:49 AM
To me it is boasting for someone to say "I humbled myself and came to God on my own." Isn't that what those who say it was their own free will to choose Christ are doing? [quote] From:  [i]"Art Barga" &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i] Reply-To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] Subject:  [i]RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives[/i] Date:  [i]Fri, 03 Feb 2006 06:58:38 -0700[/i] [quote]Isn’t it the will of God our Savior is for all of to be saved and  to know the truth as it is written in;&lt;?xml:namespace prefix = o ns =  "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /&gt; 1 Timothy 2:3 “For this is good and  acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 1 Timothy 2:4 “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the  knowledge of the truth. If our Almighty God Jesus Christ  did not give us the free will, He would just have imposed/applied His will to  everyone for after all He wanted everyone to be saved and come to the knowledge  of the truth. In the same token, everyone will be chosen but it is also  written; Matthew 22:14 “For many are called, but  few are chosen. It really appears that one  should will to come to God before you will be saved  as in Romans 10:9 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus,  and shalt believe in thine heart  that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. The act of believing is a  prerogative to will in coming to God’s salvation(chosen), He has given everyone  this choice and He should not have given this commandment if He has taken away  free will: Luke 11:9 “And I say unto you, Ask, and  it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened  unto you. Luke 11:10 “For every one that asketh  receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be  opened. And you have to convert and  humble yourself by your choice like in: Matthew 18:3 “And said, Verily I say unto  you, Except ye be converted, and  become as little children, ye  shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Mark 10:15 “Verily I say unto you,  Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as  a little child, he shall not enter therein. Acts 3:19 “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that  your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the  presence of the Lord. Psalms 69:32 “The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek  God. Let us take the case of Saul who  persecutes those who believe in Jesus, but he was predestinated of God to be one  of His chosen. Lord Jesus has shown His power and glory by making Saul as His  persecutor but in the end he became one the Apostles of Lord Jesus. When he fell  on the ground on his way to Damascus, he asked who is He speaking and the Lord  replied that it is Him the one that he persecutes. He believed and that is an  act of freewill, to accept and be converted when in fact, since the beginning he  tried to go after those believers of Lord Jesus Christ. He really hates the  protagonist that is why he went after the followers of Lord Jesus Christ. And  what about Judas, he started to be an ally of Lord Jesus and end-up betraying  Him. These are the circumstances the Lord Jesus designed for Saul and  Judas that they must undergo as to the foreknowledge of the Almighty  God. This is the very good example of  what he meant in commandments; Romans 9:21 “Hath not the  potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and  another unto dishonour? Jeremiah 18:6 “O house of Israel, cannot  I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the  potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. But digest this carefully via  the Spirit of the Lord in you Jeremiah 18:10 “If it do evil in my  sight, that it obey not my voice,  then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit  them. This means that the clay may not  obey meaning it has a freewill to obey or not(Jeremiah 18:6-10 is referring to  Israel-the clay-the chosen people of God). This is to show is power for His  glorification. Look what He did to Paul, He made him His antagonist, for others  to show His power and by that He was glorified by those who knew Paul. They  found an edification by what He did to clays(Paul) and Judas-for the testament  to be fulfilled. Chosen will never be boastful of  his will to convert as written in; Ephesians 2:5 “Even when we were dead in  sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are  saved;) Ephesians 2:8 “For by grace are ye saved  through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Ephesians 2:9  “Not of works, lest any man should boast. You were saved not of yourself  neither by your works, but how Abraham by his works he was justified by God as  written; James 2:21  “Was not Abraham our father justified by  works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? And faith with works is perfect  as mentioned; James 2:22 “Seest thou how faith wrought  with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? Being  supported  by James 2:17 “Even so faith, if it hath not  works, is dead, being alone. So the works being referred to  in Ephesians 2:9 is different from the works being mentioned in James chapter 2.  (That will be touched in our other discussions thru the will and revelation of  God.). Every verse should fall to where they are intended to and it does not  mean when it was mentioned in a certain verse it is also has the same meaning or  connotations as the former verse you came into. The word of truth must be  divided rightly as commanded in; 2 Timothy 2:15  “Study to shew thyself approved unto  God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of  truth. Isaiah 28:10 “For precept must be  upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a  little, and there a little: For by grace(the plan of  salvation together with Christ when He fulfilled His testament and being our  model or elder brother via crucifixion) we were saved thru faith, it is the gift  (inheritance He promised to Abraham) of God. We hoped for things have yet to  come(faith)  Ephesians 1:7 “In whom  we have redemption through his  blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his  grace; Ephesians 1”11 “In whom also we  have obtained an inhritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him  who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: 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, Ephesians 2:5 “Even when we were  dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are  saved;) And when you recognized the one  true God, boasting will never come into your mind because when you found Lord  Jesus Christ, His spirit will make its abode in you as  written; 1 Corinthians 6:19  “What? know ye not that your body is the  temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not  your own?  1Corinthians 6:20 “For ye are bought with  a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are  God's. And the fruits of Holy Spirit is  as written; Ephesians 5:9 “(For the fruit of the  Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Galatians 5:22 “But the fruit of the  Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness,  faith, Galatians 5:23 “Meekness, temperance:  against such there is no law. Thus the confirmation of Lord  Jesus Himself that one should will to come to claim the inheritance  offered. John 6:37 “All that the Father  giveth me SHALL COME TO ME; and him that  cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. Matthew 11:28 “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy  laden, and I will give you rest. Let us not be selective with the  words of God to suit what we believe. It should not be our intellect and  feelings must prevail it should be the truth in the word of  God. And brethren let us all remember  this;  Galatians 6:26 “Let us not be  desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one  another. No one among His children will  dare or intentionally take the glory of his Father for they know this only  belongs to Him. For children of God do not have anything to boast for what  he/she has about spiritual things because he is aware that all came from Lord  Jesus. They are just vessels/instrument/speaker systems in conveying the will  and revelation of the most high and merciful God (Jesus Christ). Finally, for me by this  posting I am putting into rest this issue and let the spirit of  God work in us.   [/quote] [/quote]
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adlemsot
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 04, 2006 11:10:04 AM
Steve wrote: ________________________   It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. ________________________   Yes, I agree.     Steve wrote: ________________________   The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world.   ________________________ What if Paul did not religiously obey the Lord somewhere prior to Paul's death, did the Lord still save Paul? I just ask you this on the premise that even if the Lord chose Paul as His vessel, still it was Paul's free will at stake here if he had to follow or not the command of the Lord to him. I hope you understand what I mean. [b][i][/i][/b]  [b][i][/i][/b]  [b][i]Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i][/b] wrote: [quote]Adlemi, It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world. [quote] From:  Adlemi Sotnas Reply-To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org Subject:  RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives Date:  Fri, 03 Feb 2006 02:15:45 -0700 &gt; Steve wrote: &gt; _________________________________ &gt;    Paul recognizes that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. &gt; _________________________________ &gt;      &gt;    You seem to insinuate here that we must not be boastful of our doing, do I perceive you right? But what about salvation, what for did God save Paul? With Paul doing nothing at all, will God still save him?   &gt; &gt; &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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adlemsot
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 04, 2006 11:27:04 AM
[quote] ________________________   To me it is boasting for someone to say "I humbled myself and came to God on my own."   ________________________   Gotcha!  Well, you do hit the bulls eye Steve. Now I understand you very well with what you are saying if we are to glory, glory in the Lord. In my perspective, saying such words to your fellow men tantamounts to self righteousness before the Lord. Let the Lord be the One to tell us such words or let us hear those words from the mouth of the Lord so that the glory will be to the Lord and not to us.    ________________________   Isn't that what those who say it was their own free will to choose Christ are doing? ________________________   Your words is as good as mine Steve and the documents will testify to this. I know now what you mean though we push hard in equating salvation based on free will which to me is a seperate topic vis a via to what you are pinpointing. Perhaps salvation and free will should be dealt in another presentation to see the difference between what you are saying now and what we are saying about free will and salvation.      [b][i]Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i][/b] wrote: To me it is boasting for someone to say "I humbled myself and came to God on my own." Isn't that what those who say it was their own free will to choose Christ are doing? [quote] From:  "Art Barga" Reply-To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org Subject:  RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives Date:  Fri, 03 Feb 2006 06:58:38 -0700 &gt; Isn&#8217;t it the will of God our Savior is for all of to be saved and  to know the truth as it is written in; &gt; 1 Timothy 2:3 &#8220;For this is good and  acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; &gt; 1 Timothy 2:4 &#8220;Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the  knowledge of the truth. &gt; If our Almighty God Jesus Christ  did not give us the free will, He would just have imposed/applied His will to  everyone for after all He wanted everyone to be saved and come to the knowledge  of the truth. In the same token, everyone will be chosen but it is also  written; &gt; Matthew 22:14 &#8220;For many are called, but  few are chosen. &gt; It really appears that one  should will to come to God before you will be saved  as in &gt; Romans 10:9 &#8220;That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus,  and shalt believe in thine heart  that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. &gt; The act of believing is a  prerogative to will in coming to God&#8217;s salvation(chosen), He has given everyone  this choice and He should not have given this commandment if He has taken away  free will: &gt; Luke 11:9 &#8220;And I say unto you, Ask, and  it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened  unto you. &gt; Luke 11:10 &#8220;For every one that asketh  receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be  opened. &gt; And you have to convert and  humble yourself by your choice like in: &gt; Matthew 18:3 &#8220;And said, Verily I say unto  you, Except ye be converted, and  become as little children, ye  shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. &gt; Mark 10:15 &#8220;Verily I say unto you,  Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as  a little child, he shall not enter therein. &gt; Acts 3:19 &#8220;Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that  your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the  presence of the Lord. &gt; Psalms 69:32 &#8220;The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek  God. &gt; Let us take the case of Saul who  persecutes those who believe in Jesus, but he was predestinated of God to be one  of His chosen. Lord Jesus has shown His power and glory by making Saul as His  persecutor but in the end he became one the Apostles of Lord Jesus. When he fell  on the ground on his way to Damascus, he asked who is He speaking and the Lord  replied that it is Him the one that he persecutes. He believed and that is an  act of freewill, to accept and be converted when in fact, since the beginning he  tried to go after those believers of Lord Jesus Christ. He really hates the  protagonist that is why he went after the followers of Lord Jesus Christ. And  what about Judas, he started to be an ally of Lord Jesus and end-up betraying  Him. These are the circumstances the Lord Jesus designed for Saul and  Judas that they must undergo as to the foreknowledge of the Almighty  God. &gt; This is the very good example of  what he meant in commandments; &gt; Romans 9:21 &#8220;Hath not the  potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and  another unto dishonour? &gt; Jeremiah 18:6 &#8220;O house of Israel, cannot  I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the  potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. &gt; But digest this carefully via  the Spirit of the Lord in you &gt; Jeremiah 18:10 &#8220;If it do evil in my  sight, that it obey not my voice,  then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit  them. &gt; This means that the clay may not  obey meaning it has a freewill to obey or not(Jeremiah 18:6-10 is referring to  Israel-the clay-the chosen people of God). &gt; This is to show is power for His  glorification. Look what He did to Paul, He made him His antagonist, for others  to show His power and by that He was glorified by those who knew Paul. They  found an edification by what He did to clays(Paul) and Judas-for the testament  to be fulfilled. &gt; Chosen will never be boastful of  his will to convert as written in; &gt; Ephesians 2:5 &#8220;Even when we were dead in  sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are  saved;) &gt; Ephesians 2:8 &#8220;For by grace are ye saved  through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: &gt; Ephesians 2:9  &#8220;Not of works, lest any man should boast. &gt; You were saved not of yourself  neither by your works, but how Abraham by his works he was justified by God as  written; &gt; James 2:21  &#8220;Was not Abraham our father justified by  works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? &gt; And faith with works is perfect  as mentioned; &gt; James 2:22 &#8220;Seest thou how faith wrought  with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? &gt; Being  supported  by &gt; James 2:17 &#8220;Even so faith, if it hath not  works, is dead, being alone. &gt; So the works being referred to  in Ephesians 2:9 is different from the works being mentioned in James chapter 2.  (That will be touched in our other discussions thru the will and revelation of  God.). Every verse should fall to where they are intended to and it does not  mean when it was mentioned in a certain verse it is also has the same meaning or  connotations as the former verse you came into. The word of truth must be  divided rightly as commanded in; &gt; 2 Timothy 2:15  &#8220;Study to shew thyself approved unto  God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of  truth. &gt; Isaiah 28:10 &#8220;For precept must be  upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a  little, and there a little: &gt; For by grace(the plan of  salvation together with Christ when He fulfilled His testament and being our  model or elder brother via crucifixion) we were saved thru faith, it is the gift  (inheritance He promised to Abraham) of God. We hoped for things have yet to  come(faith)  &gt; Ephesians 1:7 &#8220;In whom  we have redemption through his  blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his  grace; &gt; Ephesians 1&#8221;11 &#8220;In whom also we  have obtained an inhritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him  who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: &gt; Ephesians 1&#8221;13 &#8220;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, &gt; Ephesians 2:5 &#8220;Even when we were  dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are  saved;) &gt; And when you recognized the one  true God, boasting will never come into your mind because when you found Lord  Jesus Christ, His spirit will make its abode in you as  written; &gt; 1 Corinthians 6:19  &#8220;What? know ye not that your body is the  temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not  your own? &gt;  1Corinthians 6:20 &#8220;For ye are bought with  a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are  God's. &gt; And the fruits of Holy Spirit is  as written; &gt; Ephesians 5:9 &#8220;(For the fruit of the  Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) &gt; Galatians 5:22 &#8220;But the fruit of the  Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness,  faith, &gt; Galatians 5:23 &#8220;Meekness, temperance:  against such there is no law. &gt; Thus the confirmation of Lord  Jesus Himself that one should will to come to claim the inheritance  offered. &gt; John 6:37 &#8220;All that the Father  giveth me SHALL COME TO ME; and him that  cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. &gt; Matthew 11:28 &#8220;Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy  laden, and I will give you rest. &gt; Let us not be selective with the  words of God to suit what we believe. It should not be our intellect and  feelings must prevail it should be the truth in the word of  God. &gt; And brethren let us all remember  this; &gt;  Galatians 6:26 &#8220;Let us not be  desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one  another. &gt; No one among His children will  dare or intentionally take the glory of his Father for they know this only  belongs to Him. For children of God do not have anything to boast for what  he/she has about spiritual things because he is aware that all came from Lord  Jesus. They are just vessels/instrument/speaker systems in conveying the will  and revelation of the most high and merciful God (Jesus Christ). &gt; Finally, for me by this  posting I am putting into rest this issue and let the spirit of  God work in us. &gt;   &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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fil3232003
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 04, 2006 9:01:42 PM
I could not help but praise God for this great revelation on the subject of foreknowledge and man’s free will endowed to our brother Art.
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art.barga
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 05, 2006 12:35:08 PM
Psalms 56:10 ----- Original Message ----- From: "fil3232003" &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; To: &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 4:10 PM Subject: RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives [quote] I could not help but praise God for this great revelation on the subject of foreknowledge and man's free will endowed to our brother Art.[/quote]
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Steve_Jorns1
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 06, 2006 9:58:49 PM
Adlemi, Not even Paul can resist the LORD's will. I think Jonah is a good example of this truth. The LORD's will for Jonah was to preach to Ninevah and Jonah ran from it but in the end he fulfilled God's plan because it was God's will. [quote] From:  [i]Adlemi Sotnas &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i] Reply-To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] Subject:  [i]RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives[/i] Date:  [i]Fri, 03 Feb 2006 20:10:06 -0700[/i] [quote]Steve wrote: ________________________         It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. ________________________         Yes, I agree.              Steve wrote: ______________________________         The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world.      ________________________    What if Paul did not religiously obey the Lord somewhere prior to Paul's death, did the Lord still save Paul? I just ask you this on the premise that even if the Lord chose Paul as His vessel, still it was Paul's free will at stake here if he had to follow or not the command of the Lord to him. I  hope you understand what I mean.              Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; wrote: &gt; Adlemi, &gt; It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world. &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt;  From:  Adlemi Sotnas &gt; &gt;  Reply-To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org &gt; &gt;  To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org &gt; &gt;  Subject:  RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives &gt; &gt;  Date:  Fri, 03 Feb 2006 02:15:45 -0700 &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt;  &gt; Steve wrote: &gt; &gt;  &gt;    ________________________ &gt; &gt;  &gt;    Paul recognizes  that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. &gt; &gt;  &gt;    ________________________ &gt; &gt;  &gt;      &gt; &gt;  &gt;    You seem to insinuate here that we must not be boastful of our doing, do I perceive you right? But what about salvation, what for did God save Paul? With Paul doing nothing at all, will God still save him?   &gt; &gt;  &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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Steve_Jorns1
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 06, 2006 9:59:25 PM
Adlemi, Not even Paul can resist the LORD's will. I think Jonah is a good example of this truth. The LORD's will for Jonah was to preach to Ninevah and Jonah ran from it but in the end he fulfilled God's plan because it was God's will. [quote] From:  [i]Adlemi Sotnas &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt;[/i] Reply-To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] To:  [i]bibletalk@purechristianity.org[/i] Subject:  [i]RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives[/i] Date:  [i]Fri, 03 Feb 2006 20:10:06 -0700[/i] [quote]Steve wrote: ________________________         It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. ________________________         Yes, I agree.              Steve wrote: ________________________         The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world.      ________________________    What if Paul did not religiously obey the Lord somewhere prior to Paul's death, did the Lord still save Paul? I just ask you this on the premise that even if the Lord chose Paul as His vessel, still it was Paul's free will at stake here if he had to follow or not the command of the Lord to him. I  hope you understand what I mean.              Steve Jorns &lt;bibletalk@purechristianity.org&gt; wrote: &gt; Adlemi, &gt; It is written if we are to glory, glory in the LORD. Not in ourselves. The LORD saved Paul because the Paul was the Lord's chosen vessel before the foundation of the world. &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt;  From:  Adlemi Sotnas &gt; &gt;  Reply-To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org &gt; &gt;  To:  bibletalk@purechristianity.org &gt; &gt;  Subject:  RE: Freewill in our Physical/Spiritual Lives &gt; &gt;  Date:  Fri, 03 Feb 2006 02:15:45 -0700 &gt; &gt; &gt; &gt;  &gt; Steve wrote: &gt; &gt;  &gt;    ________________________ &gt; &gt;  &gt;    Paul recognizes  that he is who he is because of God's grace, not because of his own doing or his own choices. &gt; &gt;  &gt;    ________________________ &gt; &gt;  &gt;      &gt; &gt;  &gt;    You seem to insinuate here that we must not be boastful of our doing, do I perceive you right? But what about salvation, what for did God save Paul? With Paul doing nothing at all, will God still save him?   &gt; &gt;  &gt; [/quote] [/quote]
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beyond_smoke
Joined Jul 21, 2005
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Posted: Feb 07, 2006 1:59:57 AM
How true is the word, "O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walks to direct his steps" (Jer. 10:23). You have probably heard it said throughout all of your life, that MAN IS A FREE MORAL AGENT. Let me call attention to the fact that the phrase "free moral agent" is not a Scriptural one, any more than the term "rapture" is Scriptural. Free moral agency is simply a theological expression, man-manufactured for his own convenience, and like most human inventions, and extra-biblical terminology, is not the truth at all. But briefly let us examine these three words: free moral agent. 1. An AGENT is an actor, one who is able to act or perform. 2. A FREE agent is one who can act as he pleases without any restraint of any kind placed upon him. 3. A free MORAL agent is one who is free to act as he pleases and without any restraint on all moral issues, i.e. questions involving the qualities of right and wrong. I do not believe that the Bible anywhere teaches that man is a free moral agent. That teaching is a figment of the imagination of the harlot church system. In fact, the Bible teaches the exact opposite. It tells us, "It is NOT of him that WILLS or of him that runs, but of GOD that shows mercy" (Rom. 9:16). The biggest lie that ever was told in human language is that all men are born free moral agents. They are not born free. Be honest! Ask, Is that child free who is born in the slums; the child of a harlot and a whoremonger; a child without a name, who grows up with the brand of shame upon his brow from the beginning; who grows up amidst vice, and never knows virtue until it is steeped in vice? Is such a child a FREE MORAL AGENT, free to act intelligently, as he chooses, upon all moral questions? Is that child free who grows up amidst falsehood, and never knows what truth is until it is steeped in lies; that never knows what honesty is until it is steeped in crime? Is that child born free? Is that child free who is born in a communist land and in a godless home; who is told by its government and taught by its teachers that there is no God in heaven, and never knows even a verse of Scripture until it is steeped in unbelief and infidelity? Is that child born free? Is he a free moral agent? It is a sham, a delusion, and a snare to say it. It is not true. All are not born into this world as free moral agents. The truth is much stronger than that, for the fact is, that NONE are free moral agents! The preachers claim that when God made man in the first place, He endowed him with freedom of will, the ability to accept God's love or reject it, to keep God's laws or break them, and that the decision here and now is a final choice. But our Lord says, "No man can come unto Me, except the Father which has sent Me draw him" (Jn. 6:44). Let us think a moment of just how free man is, how far his freedom reaches. A little observation and study will show that man's freedom has very narrow limits. One is able to wish or desire or purpose as he pleases, but when he comes to carry out his wish or desire or purpose, he finds that he faces a problem. One is not free in the physical realm. Just let him try to jump off the Earth and land on Mars, for example. One is not free in the social realm. Not every man can marry the woman he wishes. One is not free in the economic realm. Not every person who dreams of being a millionaire can become one, no matter how hard he tries. One is not free in the moral and spiritual realm. He may desire with all his being to rid the world of drunkenness and vice, of greed and hate and war, but who has yet accomplished that? Many are not able to free even themselves from a little weed called tobacco! Life neither begins or ends by choice and free will. Consider the matter of your own physical birth. What did you have to do with it, my friend? May I remind you that you were not consulted in the matter; you were absolutely passive in it; you had nothing whatsoever to do with it. You did not have a choice as to where or when you would be born. You had no choice as to what kind of a home or family you would be born into. Did someone say to you, "Tell me, sir - or would you rather be madam? Would you like to have black hair, or blond hair, or perhaps no hair at all? Would you like to have brown eyes or blue? Would you like to have white skin, or black, or would green, or red, or yellow suit you better? And where would you like to live? In Miami, or Hong Kong, or Siberia, or maybe in the Congo?" Nothing of the sort! You were not even consulted. The sovereign Lord God of heaven and earth brought you into existence and ordained your path without so much as a how-do-you-feel-about-it. And you had no choice as to how you would be born, in what condition or state of being. The Psalmist declared, "Behold, I was brought forth in a state of iniquity; my mother was sinful who conceived me and I, too, am sinful" (Ps. 51:5, Amplified). Well did the apostle Paul write....... by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned ... for by one man's disobedience many were made sinners" (Rom. 5:12,19). If any man had brought himself into being, then we can conceive of the possibility of his having something to say about his condition and destiny. But mankind had absolutely nothing whatever to do with his coming into this world. It was the choice of God. God chose to bring this creature into existence because He had a definite plan for him in His creative purposes in the whole universe. It was God who formed man of the dust of the ground. It was God who breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. It was God who placed man in the Garden of Eden. It was God who planted the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the midst of the Garden. It was God who gave the law that man should neither touch this tree nor eat of it. And it was God who made the serpent and put him in the Garden and sent him along one beautiful day to tempt the man. It was GOD! Even if Adam was a free moral agent, God is responsible for what happened in the Garden, for whatever a free moral agent may do, He is responsible for it who made him a free moral agent. If God made man a free moral agent, then God created within man the propensities for either good or evil which determined his choices. If God made man a free moral agent, He knew beforehand what the result would be, and hence is just as responsible for the consequences of the acts of that free moral agent as He would be for the act of an irresponsible machine that He had made. Man's free moral agency, even if it were true, would by no means clear God from the responsibility of his acts since God is his Creator and has made him in the first place just what he is, well knowing what the result would be. If God's will is ever thwarted, then He is not almighty. If His will is thwarted, then His plans must be changed, and hence He is not all-wise and immutable. If His will is never thwarted, then all things are in accordance with His will and He is the architect of all things as they exist. If He is all-wise and all-good, then all things, existing according to His will, must be working toward some wise and wonderful end! "What shall we conclude then? Is there injustice on God's part? Certainly not! For He says to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then God's gift is not a question of human will and human effort, but of God's mercy. It depends not one ones own willingness ... but on God's having mercy on him. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, I have raised you up for this very purpose of displaying My power in dealing with you, so that My name may be proclaimed the whole world over. So then He has mercy on whomever He wills (chooses) and He hardens - makes stubborn and unyielding of heart - whomever He wills. You will say to me, Why then does He still find fault and blame us for sinning? For who can resist and withstand His will? But who are you, a mere man, to criticize and contradict and answer back to God? Will what is formed say to him that formed it, Why have you made me thus? Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same mass one vessel for beauty and distinction and honorable use, and another for menial or ignoble and dishonorable use?" (Rom. 9:14-21, Amplified). It is a wicked and cruel lie to say that the unregenerated man is a "free moral agent." He is no such thing! He is a slave. "We know that the Law is spiritual; but I am a creature of the flesh (carnal), having been SOLD INTO SLAVERY UNDER THE CONTROL OF SIN" (Rom. 7:14, Amplified). The unregenerate man is a slave to sin. He is a slave to Satan. He is a slave of his own carnal mind and deceitfully wicked heart. He is a slave of his own vile passions. How can a man who is a slave and a captive of the devil be a "free moral agent"? Impossible! Adam sold us out. Adam gave us no choice in bringing his progeny under the workings of iniquity. When Adam went into sin, he did not consult with any one of us as to our desire concerning anything he did. None of us had any power or any choice in the condition in which we entered this world. WE WERE NOT SINNERS BY CHOICE, as we have erroneously been told. We are "born in sin, and shapened in iniquity," with the carnal nature in us from the moment we leave the womb. Being "dead in trespasses and sins," dead to God, dead to truth, dead to purity, dead to reality, the Adamic race was no longer capable of making a choice or decision for salvation. How truly the apostle wrote in Eph. 2:2-3, "And you ... were dead in trespasses and sins: wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience; among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and WERE BY N-A-T-U-R-E THE CHILDREN OF WRATH, even as others." The message is clear - we were not sinners by choice. We were sinners by NATURE! We were BORN INTO this condition, simply because the first man, Adam, put us all into slavery to sin. We had nothing to say about it. We did not in any way will it, consent to it, or choose it, for we were born into it. And we were not born free moral agents. We were born slaves! There is no fact more self-evident than the fact of the total depravity of man, or his TOTAL INABILITY to deliver himself from bondage to sin, and this is rooted in the fact that his human spirit is dead from birth. Total depravity means that man in his natural state is incapable of doing anything or desiring anything pleasing to God. Until our spirit is quickened by HIS SPIRIT we are slaves of the flesh and the devil and are enemies to God. When man insists that he still has a "spark" of divine good resident in his heart the Bible says, "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked. Who can know it?" (Jer. 17:9). When man contends that he is a free moral agent and can accept or reject the Lord by his own volition, the Word of God contradicts him, declaring, "There is none righteous, no not one! There is none that understands, there is N-O-N-E THAT SEEKS after God" (Rom. 3:10-11). Man is totally depraved in the sense that everything about his nature is in rebellion against God. Man is loyal to the god of darkness and loves darkness rather than The Light. His will is, therefore, not at all "free". It is a slave to the flesh. Total depravity means that man, of his own "free will," will NEVER MAKE A DECISION FOR CHRIST. Our blessed Lord bluntly says, "You will not come to Me, that you might have life" (Jn. 5:40). Why does our Lord say this? Because the will of the unregenerate man is bound by the bands of sin and death to the god of the spiritually dead. Total depravity means that the natural man is completely incapable of discerning Truth. In fact, unregenerate man thinks of the things of God as being ridiculous! "The natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him. Neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (I Cor. 2:14). Man cannot see or know the things which relate to the Kingdom of God, without being regenerated first by the Holy Spirit. A dead spirit perceives only the things of man and Satan. Hence the words of Jesus to Nicodemus: "Unless a man is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God" (Jn. 3:3). Unborn children do not see the light. Dead men do not see the light. Unregenerate men cannot comprehend even that they should come to the Light. They are the unborn dead who know only darkness. They are totally depraved, wholly incapable of thinking, perceiving, or doing anything pleasing to God, UNTIL GOD SEES FIT TO GIVE THEM LIFE and understanding. Faith follows the giving of Life. The giving of Life is by the will of God. Notice the order: "God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, has made us alive together with Christ (by grace are you saved)" (Eph. 2:4-5). Man is not saved by some mythical act of his own free will. He is saved by grace, the divine enablement of God who first gives him Life and then imparts faith in his heart as a free gift. Paul continues: "For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the Gift of God. It is not of works, lest any man should boast" (Eph. 2:8-9). Observe! Saving faith is the GIFT OF GOD, NOT AN EXERCISE OF MAN'S "FREE WILL"! Man must believe, certainly, but it is not the old deceitful and desperately wicked heart, nor the old carnal mind which believes, but the faith graciously imparted by God as a gift is the agency of man's believing. God has decreed that the works of the flesh shall have no part in the "so great salvation" which He Himself provides. It is His work through the Gift of Life. He regenerated us when we were dead in sins. Life is His Gift. Faith is His Gift. We are saved by a faith which "is not of ourselves." We believed by the faith which GOD GIVES, not by our own FREE WILL! Until a man has been quickened by the Holy Spirit the word is: "Why do you not understand My speech? Even because you cannot hear My word! You are of your father the devil" (Jn. 8:43-44). But once God quickens us by the Gift of Life and the Gift of Faith the word is:" It is GOD who works in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure" (Phil. 2:13). Wise men standing by the grave of Lazarus might pronounce it an evidence of insanity when the Lord addressed a dead man with the words, "Lazarus, Come forth." Ah! but He who thus spoke was and is Himself the Resurrection, and the Life, and at HIS word even the dead live! Just as Lazarus would never have heard the voice of Jesus, nor would he have ever "come to Jesus," without first being given Life by our Lord, so all men "dead in trespasses and sins," must-first be given Life by God before they can "come to Christ." Since dead men cannot will to receive Life, but can be raised from the dead only by the power of God, so the natural man cannot of his own mythical "free will," will to have eternal life (Jn. 10:26-28). He must be given God's gift of saving faith. If Jesus had had no more than an "invitation" for Lazarus to receive Life, He could have knocked at that tombstone door for a long time. But Christ spoke the Life-giving Word and that Word brought Lazarus to life and caused his heart to begin to beat and his lungs to work, and Lazarus heard the voice of his Master and received the faith to arise and walk out of the darkness of that tomb of death. The natural man is a third rate power. He is not able to resist Satan because his will is inferior to the will of the devil. Paul says that those who oppose the ministers of God's truth are in the snare of the devil and "are taken captive by him at his will" (II Tim. 2:26). How can the devil ensnare the lost "at his will"? For the simple reason that man, without the Holy Spirit, is an inferior power who cannot resist the devil but walks "according to the course of this world, according to the Prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience" (Eph. 2:2). And consequently, Jesus says, "NO MAN CAN COME TO ME, except the Father which has sent Me draw him" (Jn. 6:44). A plain example of this is the business woman named Lydia who heard the apostles teaching the Word of God, and "whose heart the Lord opened.." (Acts 16:14). Who opened her heart to Jesus? Does the Bible teach that the sinner opened her heart to the Lord, or does the Scripture teach that it is THE LORD WHO OPENS HEARTS? As someone has said, "Here is a man that is dead, lying in a casket in the ground. What will you do to raise him? Will you bring your flute and play a sweet melody to woo him out of the grave? Perhaps a great thunderstorm could come and the lightning could strike around him and the thunder could shake the earth and boom and crash with its mighty voice. But neither the sweet music of the flute nor the mighty thundering above would have any effect whatsoever on the dead in their graves. They hear not; neither do they know. Nor, can the thundering of the Law or the sweet music of the Gospel have any effect on the mind and soul that is dead in sin. It needs one thing. It needs to be made alive! By a POWER BEYOND ITSELF! 'You has He made alive that were dead.' " Therefore, until God first of all comes with His grace and MAKES MEN ALIVE, there is nothing that man can do. Only GOD can raise the dead! True, God requires repentance and faith that we might be saved. But, praise His name, that which He requires, He also freely gives, that the whole thing may be of grace. Yet Christendom insists on a doctrine of man being a "free moral agent," even though the Word of God exposes this as being utterly false in every degree. Most emphatically do I declare: We are NOT free moral agents! "The creature was made subject to vanity, NOT WILLINGLY, but by reason of HIM WHO HAS SUBJECTED the same in hope" (Rom. 8:20).
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