Bart Ehrman article

Where it is only at best inferred by man that man is free in anything (which would certainly include his will most of all) Jesus is not unclear at all that souls in bondage are completely so, and that He Himself (through continuance in His word from which He is not separate) is the only way to freedom.

And so it is not without noting that this truth is as offensive to some believers today....even as in the day He first spoke it to some "believing Jews" that He is, and remains to the exclusion of all else, the only way to be free. Suddenly they were offended, taking a stand upon their lineage, their history, and matters they thought they shared in common with Abraham. But this winnowing out of histories, kinships of the flesh, all natural matters to which a man might hold for the establishing of himself...mean nothing. And yet not merely nothing...but real hindrances to any knowing of God.

Yet, they will be discarded as nothing, as mere rubbish, d*ng...when they are recognized as the obstacles they are.

But my stand is not upon predestination nor election nor any of those things, nor is my call to it though it is plainly stated, but to the Christ of God in whom, and by whom, God has chosen to make Himself known to man. That very Christ who has said both "you have not chosen me but I have chosen you and ordained you..." and "have I not chosen you, the 12, and yet one of you is a Devil?" Being ordained and predestined is along His way revealed, but the call is never away to the mere knowing of things...but He, Himself.

He is the elect One of God to that. Make no mistake that I am as common as all men, seeking to find some delight in my choices, and such choices that I have framed then as superior, seeking to take to myself such superiority. How common a man I am. But when the matter of choice is too pressed upon me, in matter of life and death (and beyond) and the dread of making the "wrong one" becomes all too plain in its terrors, it is only there my previous delights found in "my choosing" are revealed as the trap I have laid for my own soul. I suckered and merely succored...my own self's soul.

Only there can relief be found in Christ as the One not of my choosing nor deciding as who He is. Yes, only there am I made very glad such has been entirely decided well before I knew of hands into which I might take anything...and now made plain all is, and has been already quite "out of my hands" as ever it was. The preeminence of Christ in all matters may remain questionable to me in some matters (as I am allowed question...even encouraged to it...ask, seek, knock) but this is not to indulge me...but that all asking might lead to what already is, and is established.

And such right of being encouraged, comforted, allowed...which so thoroughly eclipses fears and torments was secured, is secured only by One, not myself. Do not think that to myself this question is strange as though never entertained, "But when do I get mine...when do I get "my own"? The answer has been so plainly and consistently the same through these few decades of seeking Him as to have become undeniable that "If it is not enough that this man Jesus is made both Lord and Christ to you, then nothing of all else in all creation will suffice".

"What will it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his own soul?

and

And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?

It is enough Christ be my life. Yet so much more.

Who forsook His own choosing to be the Choicest (where choice finally fails and is laid to rest in comparisons).

Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?

What is the substance of that man that forsakes what is His by right so that it could not even be called escape by any? What little I may know of His taking on there makes it quite plain...even as I get to know Him...that I am not Him.

For what He took on there is all that separated me from God and even all others...that the only man I could ever know was myself. With no knowing, at all. (And if any man doubt that any and all he may know of himself is only through feeding and feedback, may such a man find grace in the time it is to him, silenced...and only voices are to him, other)

And God in wisdom says "It is not good for the man to be alone".

What He took away, put away, put to death in Himself in His dying for me, that work is all and only what allows a man, even a man as me...to be...without shame.

This gift is proffered to as many as can receive it.
I will appear more foolish, still.
Well said.

Some see the choice; some see the Power behind the choice.
Some see potentiality; some see pure Actuality.
Some seek to make a change; some seek the Unchanging.
Some hear thunder; some hear an Angle.
 
Thread starter #183
Well said.

Some see the choice; some see the Power behind the choice.
Some see potentiality; some see pure Actuality.
Some seek to make a change; some seek the Unchanging.
Some hear thunder; some hear an Angle.
Some see the Psaki
 
Thread starter #185
Since they provide content which has yet to be refuted your credentials as a source are at least step below theirs. Forgive me for not taking your word without something to back it up.
 
Since they provide content which has yet to be refuted your credentials as a source are at least step below theirs. Forgive me for not taking your word without something to back it up.
I have offered my opinion, even stated my belief at times, but I don't recall having asked you to "take my word" for anything. I have no such standing.
 
Thread starter #187
I have offered my opinion, even stated my belief at times, but I don't recall having asked you to "take my word" for anything. I have no such standing.
I thought you might provide something to go along with your statement about reliable sources. Maybe enlighten us as to why they are or are not reliable and then address their content. I'll know for next time not expect anything but laughing one liners.
 
I thought you might provide something to go along with your statement about reliable sources. Maybe enlighten us as to why they are or are not reliable and then address their content. I'll know for next time not expect anything but laughing one liners.
That ground has been covered more times that the path from my office to my bathroom (reference BPH).
 

Israel

Senior Member
Can someone please point out which one of those verses supports free will? I may have overlooked it.
yeah...I know. I didn't make it past #1.

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
 

gemcgrew

Senior Member
And, if that’s what @gemcgrew meant he said we don’t get to choose what we believe because of the pressure on our minds....

That’s what I was wanting to know. Because to me that’s not removing my choice, it’s my allowing an influence to weigh heavily on my choice.
I am not saying that we don't get to choose what we believe. I am saying that our choice is not a free choice. Freedom must be relative to something.
 

Spotlite

Senior Member
I am not saying that we don't get to choose what we believe. I am saying that our choice is not a free choice. Freedom must be relative to something.
Gotcha
 
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Spotlite

Senior Member
Can someone please point out which one of those verses supports free will? I may have overlooked it.
bullet gave it to you - see below.
Added Note - God commands humans to be fruitful and exercise dominion over the animal kingdom and the earth (Gen. 1:26). The fact that God must command us to carry out his will reveals that we are not forced to carry out his will. We can choose to obey God or not.

Dueteronomy 30

15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;

16 In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the Lord thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.

17 But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;

18 I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it.

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:
yeah...I know. I didn't make it past #1.

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
While our foot steps are established to either draw, lead us, and God has a plan for our lives, etc., to................ultimately - "whosever will" "if any man" and many more - we still have to make that choice to obey. If not so, we must remove everything about the disobedient from the Bible. What are they disobeying? What are we striving for?
 

Israel

Senior Member
There can be no obedience seen, nor to even be followed (if one accepts following) apart from seeing the obedience of God's Christ. To go to the heart of that particular matter (if one is first able to find agreement with that...which I do not presume)...is to face the question "Can a man will himself to see?" And in this particular matter of revelation...will himself to see Christ to entrance and for entrance?

GEM has made himself clear that he does not deny choice. And neither do I in various matters. And I do not think either of us are saying man has no will, I know I have made myself clear to that matter in discussions over the years. Even to "not my will be done..." spoken by the Lord Jesus.

But we are speaking in this matter exclusively as pertaining to "free" will as the ascribed term of usage in description of man's estate. A will unhindered to any and all accomplishment (free) which by its function finds nothing at all not under its purview in, and of, exercise. Can one see this is a quite different matter?

The man in prison may choose to be free, earnestly desire himself free...even in whatever measure he tells himself...might will himself to be free. And if one does not understand this as man's natural estate, (yes, even a man in Christ) I might only ask "What then do you see...and what need then of Savior?" Likewise a man in the blackest and darkest miry swamp (though I find cesspool more fittingly applicable) might think "free" is all accomplished by his choice of floating, treading, backstroke or breast stroke...but until or unless solid ground is revealed to him, standing is as far from his will to accomplish as swimming over the moon.

But again, as GEM has sought to make clear, "Free" that is free of "relative freedom" to the absolute, and especially as to will (which is endowment of all power to accomplishment) who alone would know it as His? With yet another question..."What is able to "catch up" (even a believer) in considerations of anything other than the absolute or absolutes?"

Will is indeed one thing...but "free" will quite another by its specificity.

Do not doubt that as a most common brother I have asked (and am still in process of asking/seeking/knocking) "What Lord...do you mean by 'free'?"

And as most common man and brother I am always more inclined to apply my understanding to his words, than to ask for His meaning to apply to my understanding. But thankfully I am kept from losing heart by rebuke. (But that is His work to keep me from fainting dead away at His often and necessary chastenings)

Even so with love. Mercy. Forgiveness. Life. Oh, yes, I know what I think they mean...but...apart from their meaning, meant in and by Him alone...I do indeed know nothing. I am debtor in all things to Him for understanding.

And again, if I present myself as something other, or greater, I am liar. I am all too ready to stop and argue (as did the believing Jews who were offended) by any imagined implying they were not "free". But Jesus is not speaking of a relative freedom (of that much I am assured even if in experience I do not yet know the fullness of it, nor express it by my being)

"If you continue in my word then are you my disciples indeed, and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free"

I only have been given enough to believe Jesus never speaks in less than the absolute and absolutes...no matter the poverty of my understanding. Spirit and life are in...and are indeed His words...and not "some" spirit nor "some" life to be found. Many men will say (and have) "Oh, yes, Jesus says some very good things" And though I am not better than they, I cannot deny the folly of settling there. It has been made too abundantly clear to me there are pains I invite by my choosing of some. Cramps at best. Woodshed visits.

But regardless, it would be folly to deny testimony of scourgings...when those very scourgings testify of being received. No matter how much they may also testify of my own thick headedness. All about may be saying "there's someone really really sick in there"...but I cannot live apart from the physician's visit. He makes all worth it.

I have no choice as to who is Lord. I do not, did not...make Him so. I did not give Him words for my approval nor agreement (even if I find myself being brought into agreement and approval)...He speaks of what is.

And I am only beginning to be taught.
 
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Spotlite

Senior Member
We know man is led, offered, guided, moved upon, etc. And in cases after he’s rejected his calling that his heart is hardened........so the question remains - can man simply say yes or no?
 
Thread starter #200
And a man repents why or how?
"the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance" Romans 2:4

And a man believes why or how?
"For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him" Philippians 1:29
I am well aware of the contradictions. It is you (and all followers of scripture) that choose which one cancels the other out. Some stick to their beliefs 100%, some cherry pick for various matters.
 
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