I struggle with Calvinism. When I meet Calvinists though, I can't help but see Jesus!
I struggle with Calvinism because of the predetermination. I believe in free will BUT Calvinism believes God has chosen whom he has chosen out of grace. But that leads to my question, where is the love in that? If he chooses some and damns others to hell, how is that love? Yet, when I personally meet Calvinists, they are some of the most sincere people devoted to the Lord that I have met. I have met mega church evangelicals and most of them live like the world. I can't say the same about the Calvinists. Any thoughts on the matter?
i cant say as i have ever met any calvinists, but i will share with you my understanding of GOD. as far as free will, or free choice goes, the only thing we are free to choose is to accept or reject GOD. once we make that choice, everything that happens after that, stems FROM that choice. the second part of your question is a bit more complicated. for GOD, time does not exist, or perhaps it is better to say that HE exists outside of space and time. past present and future to us are all the same to HIM. so HE knows already who will choose HIM and who will reject HIM. HE knows this before we are even born. it is by HIS grace and mercy that we were offered salvation in the first place. we are saved by grace, not by anything we might do to earn salvation. but dont let people deceive you...just as works without faith is void...so is faith without works. Yeshua said "if you love ME, keep MY commandments". and "if you say you love GOD, yet do not obey HIM, the truth is not in you and you are none of HIS". we obey GOD out of love, not because, as some would claim, we are trying to earn salvation.but also, consider this. GOD is our Creator, the ultimate authority. HE alone has the right to give life...or take it, as HE sees fit, and without our approval. too many Christians believe GOD is only a god of love. they choose to ignore the old testament. GOD says "vengeance is mine"...and HE has prepared a day of wrath for those who reject HIM. it is wise to remember this side of HIM, and fear (respect) HIM and HIS power.
Beautifully written. Thank you for your insight. I believe absolutely what you have written. Many people have a "careless" faith as if sin doesn't matter. It does matter because God loves you and deliberate sin is like throwing mud on God's face.
thank you JThomp42, and i agree with that statement Melissa, or like crucifying CHRIST all over again.
I had my answer all thought out as soon as read the additional information you proved, but I don't have to type it out because Timcgaa said it all.
Calvinism provides a sense of security for those who believe in that teaching. After all, only those who believe they are the "chosen ones" believe in Calvinism anyway! It gives them a sense of security because God has chosen before the world began who would be saved and who would be left to be destroyed. They believe that as long as they continue to follow God's ways, that is evidence that they are the elect.
This teaching of course presents some moral problems. If God is all-knowing (omniscient) as they claim, then God knew before the creation that the majority of human beings would end up being destroyed by his own hand and because of his own laws...yet he created them anyway. They deny that God has created people for destruction, but that is the conclusion you will come to if you are being honest and following the argument out to its end.
If God omniscient, omnipotent (all-powerful), and loving, why would he go through will a plan that would result in misery, pain, and ultimately destruction for the majority of mankind?
The key, Melissa, is that those who believe and teach predestination are confident that they are among the chosen. Somehow they view God as supremely loving, while overlooking the fact that God alone allowed "sin" to be created.
They will say that I and others who disagree with them are just not among the chosen ones, and therefore are blind to the obvious love and compassion God has for everyone. However, the only thing obvious here is that they have taken certain words and verses from the Bible and created their own system in which they feel happy and comfortable.
Nice caricature you built. The fact is that most who come to these truths in Scripture have a hard time wrestling with them emotionally at first. We don't invent these doctrines to feel secure, but we are only trying to be faithful to Scripture.
Obviously you are welcome to your opinion, Chris. But remember that it's just that---an opinion.
So. You're saying that people just wake up one day and say, "hey, God chooses who will be saved. Thank God I'm among those people," for no reason? They dreamed up these ideas out of thin air with no biblical precedent so that they feel secure?
Ask them does god read 6 billion thoughts all at the same time constantly, & then monitors them & decides who to pick & who not to?..I mean i bet god could if god wanted to easily, but would another system be more beneficial to us..I reckon god's given us total 100% free will to do what ever when ever we choose to, & the strength to do what ever when ever, & then sits back & leaves us to it..We then live & play our entire life out, to see if we love life or not..If we're with the program & on the real love train, & not just pretending we ascend..If we never find anything to actually live for, & if we don't learn that being kind caring & loving are actually provably the best way to be for all of us then it's probably astsalavista!lol....Anyway think about it like this, god if there is one is a very smart god, & you can tell that by the universe which still has all the scientists guessing like they always have been....Anyway would god love to watch a movie when god already know's the ending?, or would god prefer to give us all free will which is better for us & more entertaining for god..I'm not religious, but it seems perfectly logical to me..So to me all Calvinists that are really with the program & are on board the love train, have chosen god themselves they just don't realise it..God probably know's that it's hard to walk the good right path constantly, & takes a massive effort in this day & age..Those are the one's he wants the one's that knew nothing of him but did it because they'd worked it out for themselves, that the best thing to be do see have hold etc feeeeel isss love....Just a theory folks. :-)
Dave, God has read the thoughts of every man and woman on earth and this is His conclusion:
Gen 6:5 "The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."
If a person does the right good thing every time they have to decide, that will all be done from their heart..Whenever a person does the wrong bad thing, that will all be done from their egoic minds control over them..Mankind isn't evil, until shown.
Our hearts are not alone to themselves but they are restrained by the common grace of God. If God ever removes His restraint, the world (every person) would be exponentially evil. We can't fathom just how wicked we are apart from God's grace.
No one is born wicked we're all born equal, & it's childrens parents/teachers/media/friends experiences etc.That if a child identifies with through their minds thoughts that is how that kids ego is built..That's everyone in the whole world buddy.
daveadam, what you speak is not scriptural truth. man is inherently wicked. even CHRIST says no one is good. without GOD we are doomed, for without GOD we can do no righteousness.
God put us here, & then tempts us from all angles..He sends us death to question our faith, & tests our emotions & feelings control to the maximum..We're all born neutral, until we decide which path to walk..A trial run, to see what we'd
again, not scriptural. GOD not only does not tempt us, HE gives us a way out of temptation. all the pain and suffering in this world is a direct result of mankinds rejection of GOD and its desire to live in sin (disobedience). cant blame GOD for bad
All throughout the Bible it declares that humanity is deeply bent towards sin from birth. We are radically depraved to the point to where God actually must restrain us from carrying out our desires fully.
Hello again Melissa,
So glad to see you patiently inquiring of things you don't understand. Most of those who don't understand usually just bash and degrade it and God.
In order to see the love of God in election and predestination we have to truly accept and believe humanity's dilemma and the only means for a solution.
The universal dilemma is this: we are all radically depraved so much that we are all unable to repent, believe, and love Jesus Christ. Our hearts are by nature a heart of stone that cannot respond to spiritual stimuli. We are spiritual corpses, deaf, dumb, and blind towards God. If you don't believe in this premise, then you won't embrace the God of predestination. Notice that I said "God" and not His action of "predestinating."
The remedy is that God must give life so not only that we might believe in Jesus but that we will believe in Him. Those who have the Spirit from regeneration will, by their own new heart, repent and believe. Those who do not have the Spirit from regeneration are absolutely unable to repent and believe in Jesus. It's like Paul said: "Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says "Jesus is accursed!" and no one can say "Jesus is Lord" except in the Holy Spirit" (1 Cor 12:3).
Paul also said to the Ephesians: "In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will" (1:5). He predestined us in love! He saw our condition but was moved by love to predestine us unto adoption as sons. What was reason or driving force as to who and why he predestined? Paul says, " according to the purpose of His will."
Then soon after mentioning this, Paul said, "But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ-by grace you have been saved" (2:4-5). God made us alive while we were dead, and it is this aspect that Paul speaks as being the "grace" that saves us. Most churches teach that one must believe to be born again. However, Scripture teaches that we must be born again in order to believe and we will believe with certainty. Again, I address these things more clearly in my hubs that I provided to you before. I hope that helps.
Stop being a Calvinist, or Lutheran, or Catholic, or Amish, and just be a Christian. The only theology I hear Jesus talking about is love.
Calvinism isn't a denomination like Lutheran or Baptist, but it is a belief structure. It is merely a label that describes a person's beliefs. If we sat down for five minutes to discuss your world views, I could place a label on your beliefs, also.
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