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#42680 - Fri Jun 05, 2009 6:29 PM Extent of God's Love  
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hisalone Offline
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I'm beginning a new topic to keep things separate from a previous discussion.
Johan,

I didn’t see anything in the WCF that I didn’t agree with concerning the subject of God’s love or redemption. I am going to try to say what I mean by God’s “objective love” for ALL men.

First some prefatory statements of what I believe: (all verses NASB)
1) Christ death is efficient for the elect alone; His death
did not purchase salvation for the reprobate but it was
sufficient for them
2) God hates some and chooses others to salvation
3) Without God’s regenerating work brought about by the Holy
Spirit, we cannot accept Christ because we cannot know Him
nor can we know our own depravity.
4) The regenerating work of the Spirit is given to the elect
and them alone, His work is necessary for belief, not that
we believe then receive the Spirit.

Verses that speak of Christ dying only for the elect:

John 10:15 I lay down My life for the sheep
John 15:13 Christ laid down His life for His friends
(paraphrased)
John 17 His priestly prayer for the elect
Eph. 5:25-27 Gave His life for the church
These are true but they don't mean that His death was not sufficieant

What I am describing is the objective love of God to ALL men, however, still not speaking of unlimited redemption, just God’s manifestation of His love for all.

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.”

Titus 3:4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared

These two verses are used by the Arminians to show that salvation is dependent on our act of believing, that Christ died for everyone, and this is proof that He died for all. I deny this completely!

Now where I differ with the reformed view, is that I believe that Christ’s death was a manifestation of God’s love and goodwill to ALL men.

Now as for Luke 2:14, almost all the translators say the verse should be read, peace among men of whom God is pleased.

I believe the KJV is the better translation, where it reads “goodwill to men”. He sent His Son as a manifestation of His goodwill toward all men, not just the elect. We don’t need to manipulate the words as to what the scripture plainly says to defend our doctrine of election.

Some possible arguments to the verses above might be: all men meaning all nations, or as said above, all God favors, however, my understanding is that it is a demonstration of His love to all, meaning everyone. This free gift of Jesus Christ is offered to all, elect and non-elect, notice it is offered, not it is applied. Sadly for the unregenerate who have had Christ offered, all those nations where the gospel and Christ have been revealed, their suffering Hell’s torments will be even harsher than those who never heard of Christ. Luke 12:48 who has been given much shall much be required;….. The world basks in their luxury like the rich man did in comparison to Lazarus not realizing that because Christ, His word and the truth are at our fingertips, found on computers, tvs and in books, that we will be under a stricter judgment.

Now, if John 3:16, Titus 3:4 and Luke 2:14 are not speaking of all mankind, then the verses below are a lie.

Rom. 10:8-13 But what does it say? “THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved;10 for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.11 For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call upon Him;13 for “WHOEVER WILL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD will be saved.”

Why? Paul is offering Christ to the elect and the non elect. Now just because it is already known that only the elect will be saved, that doesn’t nullify the extent of the offer. If it is offered, it has to be available or it becomes a false offer, basically a lie and contrary to whom God is.

Rev. 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.

Here we have the same offer made to all by the Holy Spirit and the church.

With the above verse in mind, it also means that whenever we offer the gospel, as the body of Christ, we are lying if Christ isn’t really available to all. I believe He is available, and so I present Him as available to both believers and non-believers alike, if I didn’t believe that, I would be uncomfortable offering the gospel message.

Acts 16:31 And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you shall be saved, you and your household.”

In this verse Paul and Silas are telling the jailer what to do to be saved. If he isn’t one of the elect, and Christ isn’t available, then they are also basically lying to him, because if he believed, he would still be lost.

Why do I say all this, I’m trying to point out that Christ’s sacrifice was a “presentation” of God’s love to the whole world. It was sufficient payment for the entire world’s sin; although it was only efficient to those whom God chose to apply it to. He opens their eyes in order to accept it through the Holy Spirit.

Jn. 6:44 “No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day.

I realize that we can get into word gymnastics to support opposing views, but my question is, where does this view contradict with who God is? Or how does it contradict the doctrine of limited atonement? Or does it deny God’s justice? This very plainly shows God as a God of Love, as He is perfect in all His attributes.

This view does not deny any reformation doctrines that I’m aware of. It comes down to whether Christ is a manifestation of God’s love to all or just to the elect. The reason I say His love, because if Christ isn’t a manifestation of Love, then He isn’t God because God is love.

There is nothing to lose because of this view; because I believe it is true to scripture, yet everything to gain.

Let me end with this, when we offer the gospel to someone and tell them that if they believe they will be saved, yet we really believe that Christ can only save the elect, then we aren’t being completely honest with the individuals we are speaking to. Yes, it is true that if a person believes they will be saved, but “what if” an unregenerate person believed (I know, impossible, but only to make my point), then Christ is not really offered and the person never did have the opportunity to be saved even if they did believe. For me, I would have a hard time doing God’s work when I believed I wasn’t being truthful in my presentation, it becomes a contradiction.

Last edited by hisalone; Fri Jun 05, 2009 6:47 PM.

Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42682 - Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:19 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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I believe that God's sovereignty in His free election allows room for a genuine and sincere offer of grace during the preaching of the gospel but I don't think I would say God has an objective love for ALL mankind.


I am not trying to debate it's just William's my2cents




#42683 - Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:51 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: William]  
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Hmmmm, there is quite a number of things which need comment so I'll try and make this as brief as I can. If there is an item you wish to pursue in more detail, methinks a new thread should be started to do that otherwise this could be a VERY long thread in itself.

Originally Posted by hisalone
Now where I differ with the reformed view, is that I believe that Christ's death was a manifestation of God's love and goodwill to ALL men.

Now as for Luke 2:14, almost all the translators say the verse should be read, peace among men of whom God is pleased.

I believe the KJV is the better translation, where it reads "goodwill to men". He sent His Son as a manifestation of His goodwill toward all men, not just the elect. We don't need to manipulate the words as to what the scripture plainly says to defend our doctrine of election.

1. Christ's death was a manifestation of God's LOVE to the elect for in Scripture the love of God is almost always connected with salvation. Put simply, who God loves he saves. More on this later in response to some of your proof texts.

2. Luke 2:14... there are two 'readings' in the manuscript evidence.
The first is:
Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace,
Good will toward men.

The second is:
Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men of (His) good pleasure.

Now, it is unfortunately necessary to bring in the original Greek here to make the case for the second reading. But that's not to be taken as an apology but simply good exegesis. The genitive (eudokias) means "of good pleasure". This is reference to God of whom the angels are glorying, i.e., in God's good pleasure. I cannot mean they are glorying in man. (cf. Matt 11:26; Lk 10:21; Eph 1:4, 5, 9)

Hendriksen is certainly worthy of quoting on this matter when he writes:
Accordingly, when spelled out in full, the interpretation favored by the second view is this: "And on earth peace among men whom God has graciously chosen." His sovereign delight rests on them. With them he is well pleased.

Now even those who cannot read Greek but are sound in doctrine know that the second of the two views, rather than the first, is in line with biblical doctrine. True and lasting peace is the portion of those, and only of those, whom God has graciously chose. See the following passages: Isa 26:3, 12; 32:17; 48:22 (= 57:21); Hag 2:9; Zech 9:10; Lk 1:78, 79; Jh 14:27; 16:33; Rom 5:1; Eph 2:14, 17; Col 1:20. The entire work of salvation, from start to finish, must be ascribed to him alone: Ps 32:1; 89:33, 34; 115:1; Ezek 20:14; Dan 9:19; Jh 6:44; 15:16; Eph 1:4; Rev 5:9-14; 15:3, 4.

3. John 3:16... This text has been thoroughly hashed over here in the past and by many others from various denominations. I have taught a class on this text as well and painstakingly went through every word, both in English and Greek to show that it does NOT nor CANNOT be made to mean what is popularly taught. For the sake of brevity, let me give you a literal translation of the Greek which hopefully will be sufficient:

For God loved the world in this manner in that He gave His only begotten Son so that (in order that) the believing ones (present participle of pisteow) would not perish but have eternal life.

The word "world" in this passage simply cannot be understood as every man woman and child. The context doesn't allow it. For more on understanding "cosmos" in its context here see:
- "THE WORLD" of John 3:16 Does Not mean "All men without exception"
- An Exposition of John 3:16, by John Owen

4. Titus 3:4... Again, I must defer to the Greek where the word "love" doesn't appear in either of its two biblical forms (philew or agapaw). The word translated by some English translations is actually "philanthropia from which we get our English word "philanthropy" which is a generosity, beneficence, kindness, etc. So, this text simply does not say nor teach that God loves all men. That God sheds His goodness upon all men is what the text says, e.g., Matt 5:45 where WE are to show love to others as evidence of our being children of God. But neither text says nor infers that God loves all men.

5. It would appear that at least one area that has led you to your view is trying to what you perceive as something that needs reconciliation; God's discriminating love and the free offer of the Gospel. The fact is, no reconciliation or apology is needed.

- The recipients of God's electing love has not been revealed, i.e., the roles in the Book of Life are part of God's secret (decretive will).
- The Gospel is the means by which the elect are called to repentance and faith.
- That Christ is able to save ALL who come to Him by faith is true in and of itself.
- The Holy Spirit, working in, with and through the preaching of the Word effectually draws the elect to Christ.
- We are commanded to preach Christ in the Gospel to ALL men. (do we need to question God's command to do so?)

It is absolutely true that "whosoever comes to Christ will not be cast out". And, it is no less true that ONLY those regenerated by the Spirit will come. So, the offer (actually a command; Acts 17:30) to repent and believe on Christ unto salvation is sincere. What hinders anyone from coming isn't a lack of sincerity on God's part toward them but rather their natural hatred of God. For more on the legitimacy of the Free Offer see here: Reformed Evangelism, by Morton Smith (scroll down to part B).

Originally Posted by hisalone
I realize that we can get into word gymnastics to support opposing views, but my question is, where does this view contradict with who God is? Or how does it contradict the doctrine of limited atonement? Or does it deny God's justice? This very plainly shows God as a God of Love, as He is perfect in all His attributes.

Now, now... there is nothing gymnastic about exegeting biblical passages using the original languages and grammar. wink

Your view, at best, diminishes the depth of God's love which always accomplishes that which He purposed, i.e., to save a people for Himself. The love of God is most exhibited in Christ Who wasn't sent to make salvation possible, but to actually secure the salvation of a definite number of people, (Matt 1:21; Eph 1:4; et al). To say, "God loves you" is synonymous to say, "God has saved you in Christ."

Secondly, your view diminishes, at best the atonement of the Lord Christ when you say it was "sufficient for all". IF by that you mean that IF God had intended to save all of mankind without exception, then Christ's blood would have been sufficient to atone for all. This is indisputable given that the Lord Christ was deity, and thus His sacrifice was of infinite value. BUT, if by this phrase you mean that Christ's death sufficiently atoned for every man, woman and child, but it is efficient for only the elect then you are embracing the heresy of Amyraldianism. For more on this topic, see here: Sufficient for All, by Jim Ellis.

Okay, enough! rofl

In His grace,


[Linked Image]

simul iustus et peccator

[Linked Image]
#42692 - Sat Jun 06, 2009 12:05 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Pilgrim]  
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hisalone Offline
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Pilgrim,

"Sufficient for All" was read and your exposition of the Greek is being taken into account. Still, even though everything isn't completely clear to me, because to me, Christ is still the objective exhibition of God's love(my thinking to the world where the opposite view is just to the elect). I see I am in the minority, but felt some encouragement that Shedd held somewhat to this view even if it is wrong. I want to spend time looking at His grace and mercy in relation to Christ as the object of God's Love. I intend to continue working through this not locking in on one stance or the other until I'm fully convinced. It isn't that I can't accept that God chooses whom He will and He isn't being fair not making it available to all, I'm coming at it in who God is and who Christ is. With that in mind, until I'm satisfied, I will continue to search, not to support my position but to be satisfied one way or the other.

On a side note, why the smiley rolling on the floor laughing at the end of your previous post? What am I to think of that?



Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42694 - Sat Jun 06, 2009 1:46 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Pilgrim Offline
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hisalone,

In reverse order:

2) The rofl was just an expression of my having looked at the length of my intended "brief" response and seeing it wasn't so very brief.

1) It is true that Shedd did not stand with the majority along with a few other doctrines, e.g., he took a "realist" view in regard to imputation of Adam's sin which is hard to defend. But Shedd isn't one to throw out as he stood squarely on the vast majority of doctrines.

I am very pleased to hear that you are seriously considering different "evidences". Remember, most of those before us didn't simply sit down and dream up things to write in Systematic Theologies or to write down for what was to become the official statement of faith for an entire denomination. They searched the Scriptures, sometimes for years, consulted the "stalwarts" before them having great respect for the gifts given to them for the edification of the Church and then committed themselves to a conclusion. Some, e.g., Augustine to mention but one, changed his mind about many things as he matured. Arthur Pink mellowed considerably in his latter years yet never wavered from the doctrines set down in the great Confessions.

It has been mentioned before and perhaps it bears repeating... All that is needed is one verse from Scripture that shows that God doesn't love all men and the view that declares that God loves ALL men falls to the ground. Not only is there one, but there are many; Deut 7:6-8; Lev 20:23; Ps 5:4-6; 11:5, 6; Prov 6:16-19; Mal 1:1-3; Mk 4:10-12; Jh 6:39; 17:9, 11, 24; Rom 9:6-13, 20-24; 11:5-10, et al.

Let me finish with some reasoning from what Scripture teaches about the thrice Holy God:
  1. Was it God's intention to save all men?
  2. Did God covenant with the Son to save all men?
  3. Did God decree that Christ would be given as a Savior for all men?
  4. Was the love of God the fountain from which He predestinated and elected those to be saved? (Eph 1:4; Rom 8:28, 29) {see: prognosko = foreloved}
  5. Is the Father's love efficacious so that it accomplishes that which He purposed? (Jh 6:36-40; Rom 5:8-10)
  6. Did the Lord Christ possess the same love of the Father? (Jh 13:1; 15:9, 13; 17:9, 10, 26; Rom 8:37; Eph 5:25, 26; 1Jh 4:19; Rev 1:5; cf. Jer 31:3)
  7. Is it therefore logical that God would love all men yet Christ not save them?
  8. Since salvation is the ultimate expression of God's love, mercy and grace and Christ who came to redeem those whom the Father gave Him and is thus the ultimate expression of God's love, then can it be said that the sending of Christ displays a universal love of God for all men?
  9. Is not reprobation a display not only God's inexorable holiness and hatred of sin, but also of His love for righteousness? Is this not epitomized in the cross; we see the love, grace and mercy of God AND His holiness, wrath and justice.

In His grace,


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simul iustus et peccator

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#42698 - Sat Jun 06, 2009 4:16 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Pilgrim]  
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hisalone Offline
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Pilgrim,

Actually, If I'm not mistaken, Thomas Boston, John Brown, Andrew Fuller, W.G.T. Shedd, R.L. Dabney, B.B. Warfield, John Murray, R.B. Kuiper to name a few also held to a similar view. I learned this through John MacArthur's, "The God Who Loves". As I said, it will be necessary to get clear in my mind the difference between His Love, Mercy and Grace.

Othere questions I want to search out are: Can God's love be separated from His Mercy and Grace? If so, then is it possible for His love to be objective in Jesus Christ for all men where His Mercy and Grace is selective applied only to the elect? Is the love of God revealed in Christ the same love as that which is applied to the elect?

I also looked at the verses you provided concerning His love not being for all men, but that is where the difference of objective and subjective love plays in.

Honestly, I'm not trying to be the devil's advocate here, I really want to know for sure. Something that MacArthur said, (I don't agree with everything MacArthur teaches, so he isn't my authority, just gave me reason to think) that sometimes the reformed position goes the opposite extreme, lifting God's sovereignty over God's attributes such as love. It is a real consideration. I would call myself pretty much reformed, so this question is important to me.

Thanks for your time in replying, it is all going into my thought processes.

In Christ


Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42700 - Sat Jun 06, 2009 6:40 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Originally Posted by hisalone
...[MacArthur] just gave me reason to think) that sometimes the reformed position goes the opposite extreme, lifting God's sovereignty over God's attributes such as love. It is a real consideration.

I couldn't agree more. God's sovereignty IS one of His attributes and thus cannot be elevated over the other attributes. On the one hand we have the Evangelical (semi-Pelagian/Arminian) extreme where everything is to be seen through "love" glasses. This without question is what currently predominates Christendom. On the other hand we have the hyper-Calvinist extremists who demand that everything about God is to be filtered through His decree[s].

From my study of Scripture, neither is an option worthy of consideration. I've studied at seminaries of both groups and it wasn't enjoyable. [Linked Image] What I have come to understand is that if one attribute is to be given more of a priority over any of the others it is that God is HOLY! His grace is HOLY, His mercy is HOLY, His love is HOLY, His justice is HOLY, etc. When Isaiah was given a vision of God the seraphim didn't cry out, "Loving, loving, loving is the Lord of Hosts:the whole earth is full of his love." (Isa 6:3) When Noah was floating away on the waters of the great flood and thousands were left to drown, he didn't unfurl a banner over the back of the transom which read, "Smile! God loves you." When men are called to give an account at the Great White Throne Judgment, they are not going to stand face-to-face with a loving Father. It is before the thrice holy Judge of all the earth that they are going to have to do. The sending of Christ into the world was without question a magnificent display of God's love... BUT it was equally a display of God's judgment upon sinners who loved darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil.

The love of God is not exalted but rather diminished when it is made universal for it means that this loving omnipotent God allows sinners for whom Christ was given to perish and suffer eternal damnation. Calvinism, the Reformed Faith answers this charge (contra the Remonstrance during the "Quinquarticular Controversy of 1618-19") by showing that the love of God in Christ is redemptive in nature. It is God's love that saves a sinner through the redemption that is found only in Christ. "Salvation is of the Lord" (Jonah 2:9)... from beginning to end; regeneration, calling, conversion, sanctification and final glorification. (cf. Rom 8:29-39) The apostle John sums it up this way:

Quote
1 John 3:1-2 (ASV) "Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God; and [such] we are. For this cause the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we children of God, and it is not yet made manifest what we shall be. We know that, if he shall be manifested, we shall be like him; for we shall see him even as he is."

God bestowed His love upon believers; the elect and thus they are often addressed as "beloved". Unbelievers and the reprobate of whom we have no absolute knowledge are never addressed as "beloved of God". The elect are those loved from eternity in Christ (Eph 1:4), adopted as sons in Christ, sanctified in Christ, made to sit in the heavenlies with Christ, are preserved to the end by Christ and will for all eternity be in perfect communion with Christ. Truly, what manner of love is this? What I can tell you is that it isn't "common". wink

In His grace,


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simul iustus et peccator

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#42702 - Sun Jun 07, 2009 5:04 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Pilgrim]  
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hisalone Offline
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Pilgrim, in order to be fair on this, I am going to answer the links you provided, the first will be a
Rebuttal of Rev. Engelsma’s points. I’m not a scholar like many here, I’m actually a plumber by trade, so I may not be clear in everything I am saying or may state something amiss, so be patient.

Answer to his points marked by the bullets:
Point 1 that God loves all men without exception with a saving love is not what I am saying, He manifested his saving love in Christ, made it available to all, but it is not active/effective except in the elect.
Point 2 Jesus death was sufficient for all, as we all know, so yes, His death was sufficient for all men and so we can say He died for all men.
Point 3 God’s perceptive will, “His desire” is not the same as His sovereign decretive will
Point 4 is a sum of points 1,2, 3 which are not true
Point 5, individuals are only able to believe through the power of the Holy Spirit
Point 6 same thing, we believe and Christ’s work becomes effective by the work of the Holy Spirit
His Conclusion is wrong, it is dependent entirely on the decretive will of God.
Verses he used to back up his definition of world:
John 1:29 "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." Did Christ by His death take away the sin of all men without exception? If He did, all men without exception shall be saved.”
Originally Posted by Calvin Commentary John

He uses the word sin in the singular number, for any kind of iniquity; as if he had said, that every kind of unrighteousness which alienates men from God is taken away by Christ. And when he says, the sin OF THE WORLD, he extends this favor indiscriminately to the whole human race; that the Jews might not think that he had been sent to them alone. But hence we infer that the whole world is involved in the same condemnation; and that as all men without exception are guilty of unrighteousness before God, they need to be reconciled to him. John the Baptist, therefore, by speaking generally of the sin of the world, intended to impress upon us the conviction of our own misery, and to exhort us to seek the remedy. Now our duty is, to embrace the benefit which is offered to all, that each of us may be convinced that there is nothing to hinder him from obtaining reconciliation in Christ, provided that he comes to him by the guidance of faith.


Jn 6:33
"For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world." Does Jesus give life (not, ineffectually offer life, but, efficaciously give life) to all men without exception? If He does, all men without exception have eternal life.

It is the offer of life to the world, without Christ the world is dead. We can only eat this bread by the work of the Holy Spirit

Jn. 17:9 He prayed only for His elect, is it wrong? Would we accuse God of being unfair for not praying for everyone? Besides this goes back to the decretive will of God, and He prayed according to the Father’s will.

Pilgrim, in my reading and further pursuit of this subject, I continue to stand on the side of God’s objective Love appearing to all men. It was really quite interesting that after I first broached the subject and you called me a standaloner, I looked in my library and stumbled on John MacArthur’s book. He says some really good things that are very supportive in his book “The God Who Loves”. I can’t in good conscience accept a different view at this time. I will continue to contemplate it, but right now the strength in this tug of war lie with the stand that Calvin and others mentioned previously stood on. I want to answer some of what you mentioned and other links, but that will be later, my time doesn’t permit it right now.

Last edited by hisalone; Sun Jun 07, 2009 7:36 PM.

Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42705 - Mon Jun 08, 2009 1:56 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Hisalone,

Thanks for responding to my original question about where you differ from the WCF. Pilgrim has already said a lot and I cannot improve on that. Perhaps just the following two points:

(1) With regard to Calvin, where do you see in what you quote from him that he supports your view?

(2) Same with John MacArthur. I checked his interpretation of John 3:16 in the MacArthur Study Bible and as far as I can remember (don't have it with me right now) he does not support your view. Will check it later today again.

Johan

#42715 - Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:34 PM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Johan]  
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Johan,

Here is a nother article I found on the Love of God by D.A.Carson. I am beginning to understand more the divide between me and many here, as D.A. Carson suggests, when we leave the possibility of love being extended to those who are not elect, we are approaching Hyper Calvinism. The view I hold is actually standing together with many others, not just a few as implied, and I intend to stay here.

Article by D.A. Carson:
http://calvinandcalvinism.com/?p=1301

To say God did not show salvific love (again,I call this objective love)to the non-elect is contrary to all that scripture teaches on the subject. As my first post suggested, then we are basically lying when we present the gospel no matter how we rationalize it. There are arguments on both sides that can be convincing, but it all comes down to who God is in relation to the world. Just think, if Jesus who was God did not love the elect and the non-elect when He was in the flesh, then He never fulfilled the law. God can have a type of Love for the non-elect without extending salvation to them. And not just the love of benevelence as has been suggested. Maybe on this discussion group I standalone, but not in His church, others have held the same view without being Arminian.

Hmmm I just pulled Spurgeon vs Hyper-Calvinism off the shelf, I intend to see how he approached the subject also.

Last edited by hisalone; Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:54 PM.

Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42719 - Tue Jun 09, 2009 1:16 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Hisalone,

But what about Malachi 1:3:

Quote

The oracle of the word of the LORD to Israel through Malachi.

2 "I have loved you," says the LORD But you say, "How have You loved us?" "Was not Esau Jacob's brother?" declares the LORD "Yet I have loved Jacob;

3 but I have hated Esau, and I have made his mountains a desolation and appointed his inheritance for the jackals of the wilderness."


The apostle Paul quotes Malachi 1:3 in Romans 9:13. And he goes on to say

Quote

13 Just as it is written, "JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED."

14 What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be!

15 For He says to Moses, "I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION."

16 So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.

17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH."

18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.


Can one really talk about God's love without also understanding the above? I could not see that Carson refers to these verses.

As for preaching the gospel my personal view always was that we have to do that irrespective of who is crossing our path because God's elect is not known to us. Why am I lying to a person when I am telling him/her that God provided the sacrifice for our sins and that God so reconciled us with him?



Johan

#42720 - Tue Jun 09, 2009 5:19 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Johan]  
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Originally Posted by Johan

But what about Malachi 1:3:


God is talking about nations not individuals (although it also applies to individuals), He hates the wicked and loves those who do righteousness. Look at Essau's life as an example of the Edomites. He sold his firthright, married women he shouldn't have etc. When God said He hated Essau, He was speaking of the wicked.

The apostle Paul quotes Malachi 1:3 in Romans 9:13. And he goes on to say

Originally Posted by Johan

Can one really talk about God's love without also understanding the above? I could not see that Carson refers to these verses.


God is talking about extending saving mercy, He will have mercy on whom He will have mercy.

Originally Posted by Johan

As for preaching the gospel my personal view always was that we have to do that irrespective of who is crossing our path because God's elect is not known to us. Why am I lying to a person when I am telling him/her that God provided the sacrifice for our sins and that God so reconciled us with him?

Because according the the high reformed view He only provided Christ for the elect, not for the world, so to tell someone that Christ died for them and if we call on Him we would be saved would be to lie then. I read half of Spurgeon and HyperCalvinism, it is a real eye opener. He faced the same debate back in 1860. As he said, what happens is that people extend their thinking past who God is and go to the opposite extreme of Arminianism into God not providing salvation to any but the elect. I don't know why I was said to be the standaloner, the majority of the Puritans held to the view I hold, the other view is the real standaloners. I almost went that way, but saw the error in it. Why is it so hard to believe God can have a love for everyone and yet only show mercy to the elect?


Hisalone
Matt. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. KJV
#42721 - Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:00 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Originally Posted by hisalone

Originally Posted by Johan

As for preaching the gospel my personal view always was that we have to do that irrespective of who is crossing our path because God's elect is not known to us. Why am I lying to a person when I am telling him/her that God provided the sacrifice for our sins and that God so reconciled us with him?

Because according the the high reformed view He only provided Christ for the elect, not for the world, so to tell someone that Christ died for them and if we call on Him we would be saved would be to lie then.


In all seriousness, what then about Peter's sermon at Pentacost?
Was that a lie?

Johan

#42722 - Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:00 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: hisalone]  
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Originally Posted by hisalone
Look at Essau's life as an example of the Edomites. He sold his firthright, married women he shouldn't have etc. When God said He hated Essau, He was speaking of the wicked.

Let's Scripture interpret Scripture and not or own forced interpretation due to our own presupposition (aka: inductive). What do I mean here (Analogy of Faith)? We learn how to understand Malachi 1:1-3 from Paul's use of this passage in Romans 9:10-13.

Quote
Romans 9:10-13 (ASV) "And not only so; but Rebecca also having conceived by one, [even] by our father Isaac-- for [the children] being not yet born, neither having done anything good or bad, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth, it was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. Even as it is written, Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated."

Paul totally eliminates any possibility of looking to either Jacob or Esau (individuals representative of the entire human race re: salvation, i.e., God's love).
  1. These two individuals were conceived as one see, i.e., egg in Rebecca = equal.
  2. God's choice (love) was made long before they were born = not based upon anything they did or would do.
  3. God's election was His deliberate intent to shed His love (choice) upon one and not the other = sovereign electing love is given to one and withheld from the other.
  4. Love and hatred are ACTS, not emotional passions in reaction to mankind = love and hatred flow naturally from the very being of God and applied as He has foreordained for His own glory.

Paul continues to expand on this truth and shows that mercy (pity) is extended to some and not all, compassion is extended to some and not all, which is God's prerogative and not according to man's decision (will). Some men are raised to a place of great recognition for the sole purpose of displaying God's power and that His name might be made known to all. Paul then goes further to explain that this mercy given not given to others includes a hardening of their hearts, i.e., increasing their enmity against God further displaying His wrath and power in regard to those whom He created for the very purpose of making known the riches of his glory upon vessels of mercy, which he afore prepared unto glory.

It is therefore illogical and contrary to this and other explicit passages which teach God's discrimination among those of Adam's fallen race to assert that 1) Election, mercy, and compassion can be alienated and even made antithetical to the love of God. 2) That the election, love and salvation can be separated and made to contradict each other.

Originally Posted by hisalone
Because according the the high reformed view He only provided Christ for the elect, not for the world, so to tell someone that Christ died for them and if we call on Him we would be saved would be to lie then.

1. What is the "high reformed view"? And who has made this designation? Personally, if I were to accept this designation of my view which is consistent with all the Confessions I would much prefer to hold to a "high Reformed view" vs. a "low Reformed view".

2. If you reject the biblical truth that Christ was provided for the elect only, you are forced into a position which is indefensible, i.e., Christ was given to all without God intending to save all by Him. Thus, that which you are so wanting to avoid; an insincere offer of Christ to sinners, that is what you end up with. You have a God Who never intends to save all men, Who sends forth a Savior that redeems men but Who doesn't atone for them so that it is impossible for them to be saved by Him.

3. If Christ was provided for all but not all are saved, then you are forced into defending a position which denies a vicarious, substitutionary atonement. You are left with Christ simply making salvation possible since those for whom He was sent are not all saved by His atonement. (aka: semi-Pelagianism/Arminianism, aka: synergism)

4. You have no biblical warrant to tell anyone that "Christ died for THEM" personally since God has elected only some to receive redemption in Christ whom He sent to accomplish their redemption through His perfect obedience, death and resurrection. Nowhere in Scripture will you find this phrase used in a gospel message preached or taught by the inspired writers or examples of anyone else telling men indiscriminately that Christ died for them. This is something which belongs to those who HAVE COME to Christ by faith, who have been washed in His blood, who have been given the Holy Spirit and Who testifies to their spirit that they are children of God. (cf. Gal 2:20)... in which Paul again makes it very clear that the love of God is inextricably bound to the love of God, the sending of Christ Who actually saves specific individuals.

Originally Posted by hisalone
I read half of Spurgeon and HyperCalvinism, it is a real eye opener. He faced the same debate back in 1860. As he said, what happens is that people extend their thinking past who God is and go to the opposite extreme of Arminianism into God not providing salvation to any but the elect. I don't know why I was said to be the standaloner, the majority of the Puritans held to the view I hold,...

1. I will have to echo Johan's conclusions and challenge which he has written several times in regard to your references to those who you allege support your view. I believe you have not read Spurgeon correctly for in my reading of that book, he does not support that which you are trying to justify.

2. re: "the majority of the Puritans held to the view I hold". I would publicly challenge you to defend this statement with quotes and references from the majority of Puritans. grin

In His grace,


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#42723 - Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:09 AM Re: Extent of God's Love [Re: Pilgrim]  
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Originally Posted by Pilgrim

4. You have no biblical warrant to tell anyone that "Christ died for THEM" personally since God has elected only some to receive redemption in Christ whom He sent to accomplish their redemption through His perfect obedience, death and resurrection. Nowhere in Scripture will you find this phrase used in a gospel message preached or taught by the inspired writers or examples of anyone else telling men indiscriminately that Christ died for them. This is something which belongs to those who HAVE COME to Christ by faith, who have been washed in His blood, who have been given the Holy Spirit and Who testifies to their spirit that they are children of God. (cf. Gal 2:20)... in which Paul again makes it very clear that the love of God is inextricably bound to the love of God, the sending of Christ Who actually saves specific individuals.


This is exactly why I asked about Peter's sermon at Pentacost. And it applies to all the other public sermons by the Apostles that's given to us in Scripture.

This is my last post on this topic.

Johan

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