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Author Topic: Free will of Man  (Read 1825 times)

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geoi

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Free will of Man
« on: April 27, 2016, 02:49:07 PM »

The theory of election and predestination appeals to me because it solves many difficult contradictions, but I have never been able to get past the apparently obvious reference to free will in Genesis 3.   

8Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

So not only does it seem by these passages that Adam and Eve had the free will to eat of the forbidden fruit, but it seems that God was not even immediately aware of what they had done He says "Where are you?"  because they were hiding and he did not know where they were. And he says  “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” we can only assume he asks these questions because he did not know the answer, his questions do not seem rhetorical in any way. 

Thus how can you not understand from this that Adam and Eve have some sort of limited moral agency.  God has obviously given them enough rope to hang themselves with and they had the agency to commit acts outside of the presence of God which he would have no immediate knowledge of and did not approve of. 
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Dave in Tenn

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2016, 04:09:11 PM »

Somebody else will be along later, I'm sure, but let me make this question/observation:

Have you as a parent (or have you as a child of parents) ever said something similar to a child who you KNEW had done the thing you were asking about?  If a mother sees chocolate on her kid's face and an open bag of chocolates on the table where she had left it with instructions for him to leave it alone, she might very well talk to him exactly like this.

We shouldn't assume that just because God asks a question he is unaware of the answer.  Instead, with the rest of scripture talking about the absolutes, we should assume He knows everything and in advance. 
 
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

Extol

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2016, 05:38:13 PM »

The theory of election and predestination appeals to me because it solves many difficult contradictions, but I have never been able to get past the apparently obvious reference to free will in Genesis 3.   

8Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

So not only does it seem by these passages that Adam and Eve had the free will to eat of the forbidden fruit, but it seems that God was not even immediately aware of what they had done He says "Where are you?"  because they were hiding and he did not know where they were. And he says  “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” we can only assume he asks these questions because he did not know the answer, his questions do not seem rhetorical in any way. 

Thus how can you not understand from this that Adam and Eve have some sort of limited moral agency.  God has obviously given them enough rope to hang themselves with and they had the agency to commit acts outside of the presence of God which he would have no immediate knowledge of and did not approve of.

Hi Geoi,

I am going to reply to the parts of your post which I highlighted above. You say predestination "solves many difficult contradictions". Why, then, are you trying to convince yourself that God did not know something? Would that not be one of the most "difficult contradictions" in all of Scripture? If God is sovereign and all-knowing, but is not aware of some things that puny humans are doing--that is a pretty difficult contradiction, wouldn't you say?

Job 28:24 (NLT) for he looks throughout the whole earth and sees everything under the heavens.

Psalm 33:13-14 From heaven the LORD looks down and sees all mankind; from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth-

Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.

Hebrews 4:13 (NIV) Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

Psalm 139 (NLT)

1 O Lord, you have examined my heart
    and know everything about me.
2
You know when I sit down or stand up.
    You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.
3
You see me when I travel
    and when I rest at home.
    You know everything I do.
4
You know what I am going to say
    even before I say it, Lord.
5
You go before me and follow me.
    You place your hand of blessing on my head.
6
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too great for me to understand!
7
I can never escape from your Spirit!
    I can never get away from your presence!

8
If I go up to heaven, you are there;
    if I go down to the grave,[a] you are there.
9
If I ride the wings of the morning,
    if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
10
even there your hand will guide me,
    and your strength will support me.
11
I could ask the darkness to hide me
    and the light around me to become night—
12
    but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day.
    Darkness and light are the same to you.


If you believe these verses, you cannot possibly believe that God might not know everything about us. That is a contradiction. There are many verses which prove God's sovereignty and omniscience. There are no verses which state God does not know what humans are up to some of the time. Therefore, it is foolish to assume from this one passage (Gen. 3) that God does not know certain things. The passage says nothing of the kind, regardless of what you think it might imply. Believe what the Scriptures say, and don't try to glean things from the Bible that aren't really there.


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dave

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2016, 05:46:30 PM »

I believe that question statement, Gen 3:9 And calling is Yahweh Elohim to the human, and He is saying to him, "Adam! Where are you?

Is what Yahweh Elohim is asking everyone, especially those who believe, today… “Where are you?” I believe it is a question that does not express what the Lord God does not know, but it is what the human needs to ask and answer within himself when he misses the mark. Adam had moved from Gen. 2:8 to Gen. 2:23-25 to Gen. 3:6…..Adam was in a whole new place, the Lord God knew where Adam was, but did Adam? I personally ask myself that question.

I probably didn't say that properly, but it's the best I could do.  I hope it is not taken as teaching. Is just the way I have come to understand the question.
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Kat

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2016, 06:34:38 PM »


The theory of election and predestination appeals to me because it solves many difficult contradictions, but I have never been able to get past the apparently obvious reference to free will in Genesis 3.   

8Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

So not only does it seem by these passages that Adam and Eve had the free will to eat of the forbidden fruit, but it seems that God was not even immediately aware of what they had done He says "Where are you?"  because they were hiding and he did not know where they were. And he says  “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” we can only assume he asks these questions because he did not know the answer, his questions do not seem rhetorical in any way. 

Thus how can you not understand from this that Adam and Eve have some sort of limited moral agency.  God has obviously given them enough rope to hang themselves with and they had the agency to commit acts outside of the presence of God which he would have no immediate knowledge of and did not approve of. 

http://bible-truths.com/kennedy2.htm ------------------

RELATIVE VS. ABSOLUTE

If a theologian can't see the "absolute" versus the "relative" in Scripture, he is in no position to teach anyone.

A little boys asks: "Why did God say in Gen. 3:9: 'Where art thou [Adam]?' Mommy says that God knows everything." (I Jn 3:20). You say, "Of course God knew where Adam was. Adam sinned. Adam felt bad. He thought he could hide from God. God was condescending to man's level. It was for Adam's benefit that God asked, 'Where art thou Adam?'" You say, "That's not a problem. That's easy to understand and answer. It's stupid to think that God didn't know where Adam was."

And, of course, we have Scriptural proof that God knew where Adam was because "He [God] knows all" (I Jn 3:20)

Neither did our Lord ask questions out of ignorance:

"Believe ye that I am able to do this?" (Matt. 9:28)

"Who is my mother, and who are my brethren?" (Matt. 12:48)

"How many loaves have ye?" (Matt. 15:34)

"Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?" (Matt. 116:13)

Christ asked dozens of questions during His ministry. But He already knew all the answers:

" ... because of His knowing ALL men ... " (Matt. 21:27).

Christ even answered questions by asking questions. The Pharisees asked why His disciples transgressed the "traditions." Our Lord knew how to "answer a fool according to his folly" (Prov. 26:5) by asking: "Wherefore are you also transgressing the precept of God because of your tradition?" (Mat. 15:3)

This brings up another apparent contradiction, however, because Prov. 26:4 says: "answer not a fool according to his folly ... " Our Lord knew how to do that as well: "Neither am I telling you by what authority I am doing these things." (Mat. 21:27). These two scriptures in Proverbs should teach us to never pit one verse of Scripture against another. Verse 4 and 5 do not contradict. They are both true.

So if it's stupid to think that God didn't really know where Adam was, a relative statement condescending to man's level, isn't it then, likewise, stupid to believe that God contradicts Himself in the following verses:

       THE RELATIVE:                                                     THE ABSOLUTE:
 
" ... seek, and ye shall find ... " (Mat. 7:7)      "Not one is seeking out God" (Rom. 3:11)

"God changed His mind" (Ex. 32:14)              "God is not a man Who changes His mind" (I Sam. 15:29)

" ... choose you this day whom                      "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you ... " (Jn. 15:16)
  ye will serve." (Josh. 24:15)
 
" ... whosoever doeth not righteousness            "All is of God" (II Cor. 5:18)
  is not of God ... " (I Jn. 3:10)

"Zechariah was just before God" (Lk. 1:5)         "Not one is just" (Rom. 3:10)
 (Comparing him to the corrupt priests)              (Comparing man with God)

One is the "relative" the other is the "absolute." One is from man's point of view, comparing men with men, the other is from God's point of view. One shows how a thing is perceived while the other shows how it actually is. One is for minors while the other is for the mature.

Both Scriptures are true. The relative is true and the absolute is true. They do not contradict. However, one really is "relative" while the other is "absolute."

Theologians are always taking Scriptures that speak of the relative, from man's point of view, and insist that these verses are absolute. By doing this they commit a double sin. Because then they insist that these relative truths actually nullify God's absolute declarations. They won't admit to this in their own words, but this is what they do when they retain the "relative" at the expense of rejecting the "absolute."

Even theologians admit that their free will theory is limited. So they have invented "limited free will." They use analogies like a cow on a tether or a fly in a jar or a lion in a cage. Their freedom is limited to the confines of their restraints, but within those confines they are nonetheless, free. Is this true? Is there such a thing as "limited" free will? Or is this just more theological double-talk?

Only in religion do simple words lose their meaning. Let's look at Webster's Twentieth Century Dictionary: Page 963, "limited, a. Restricted." Page 682, "free, a. without restriction." So here then is what theologians want us to believe: Man has a will that is restricted without restriction.

Man does not have "limited" free will. Otherwise God would have "limited" sovereignty. Man has no free will and God has total sovereignty. Theologians try to make high what is low and try to bring low what is high. These teachings do not glorify God.

Somebody has been taking William James too seriously. God is not sitting around waiting to see what man will do through his "free will" so that He can then figure out what to do about it. Rather than conclude from the "wisdom of the world" that man has a free will (and thus deny the sovereignty of God), we must conclude that since God is sovereign, man can not and does not have a free will. This is logical, sensible, and lawful. It is Scriptural and it glorifies God.
--------------------------------------------------------------

mercy, peace and love
Kat
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cheekie3

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2016, 04:51:35 AM »

Kat & Extol -

Thank you both.

These are excellent Scriptural References; and sound Doctrine.

Kind Regards.

George (under the jurisdiction and authority and sovereignty of Our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ).
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The Acts of The Apostles 1:8 (NIBEV) "But you shall receive power when His Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."

Dennis Vogel

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Re: Free will of Man
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2016, 08:03:48 AM »

This should help you: https://youtu.be/PsenGK4hC_8
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