Author Topic: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)  (Read 19073 times)

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Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #125 on: February 24, 2009, 09:50:23 PM »
Maybe the point is that we can change the world despite our sin.

Make a difference any place we can.   And if we still sin so what?   

Go and sin no more is not about sinless perfection.   It is recognizing when Jesus touches us and frees us, there is no reason to go back to it.  In fact we will have knowledge that will prevent it.

The prostitute had no reason to keep doing it.   I have no reason to start smoking again.

But the fact that I still deal with things is not something in my control at this time.


Offline Molly

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #126 on: February 24, 2009, 09:55:17 PM »

Not having condemnation is not equal to Paul not having sin within him.

Where does it say that Pauls sin left him and what good are his words if I can remove sin from myself but the greatest saint didn't and didn't bother to tell anyone how to do it?


Have you done it Molly, are you sinless?  










20According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.

 21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

--Phil 1



1 Corinthians 4:1
Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.


Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #127 on: February 24, 2009, 09:55:30 PM »

The other issue is if the Cross is in place to impart that to everyone all at the same time, or if scripture harmonizes to see that each person has their day of that realization at the time of Gods choosing and the cross is a part of that timing.

Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #128 on: February 24, 2009, 09:58:33 PM »

20According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.





Ro 8:24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?


Offline Molly

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #129 on: February 24, 2009, 10:01:51 PM »
Maybe the point is that we can change the world despite our sin.

Make a difference any place we can.   And if we still sin so what?   

Go and sin no more is not about sinless perfection.   It is recognizing when Jesus touches us and frees us, there is no reason to go back to it.  In fact we will have knowledge that will prevent it.

The prostitute had no reason to keep doing it.   I have no reason to start smoking again.

But the fact that I still deal with things is not something in my control at this time.


:thumbsup:

If we are walking in the Way, we are making progress, going from here to there.

It is called a road for a reason, and a road always starts somewhere and goes somewhere else.


If we are faithful to him, he will be faithful to us.


Matthew 16:24
Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #130 on: February 24, 2009, 10:12:11 PM »
Hi Molly,  I'm not saying we can't change anything.  This is the reasoning behind L Ray Smith's beliefs it seems.

Hi Paul,  you're quite right.  My reasoning may be as dodgy as anybody elses.  I have to go with what my reasoning or understanding of the Bible tells me.  It is full of things to suggest we can choose (I know we can't all choose so easily or freely due to mental ability, mental illness, etc) to 'resist the devil and he will flee'.  There would only be a purpose to a tester, if you can actually be tested.  If you are going to respond with a pre set action, then it wasn't really a test, so why 'create' an adversery in the first place?

I draw the line with evil by leaving it firmly at the door of 'free will'.  It's a 'thing' that need not exist and won't exist in the future, but is existing now in order that we will understand it's corruptive, killing power and ultimately can choose to do God's will without 'wondering if our way would be ok'.  We will know that God's ways are ALWAYS the best ways.

Ec 3:1 and the following verses are showing how there are cyles of life, bad things and good things.  Youngs says: 'To everything -- a season, and a time to every delight under the heavens':

Are you saying that God planned 9/11 to the exact minute because it was His will?  I would say He knew 9/11 would happen but it wasn't His will.  Our wills can be in opposition to God's but that doesn't mean He isn't in overall control.


Go back and reread WhiteWing's post #57.  Here are a few of the scriptures he posted:

Amos 3:6  ....Shall there be evil in a city which the Lord has not wrought?

Job 2:10  .... Also, shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?....

Joshua 23:15  .... so doth Jehovah bring upon you the whole of the evil thing....

1 Samuel 15:2-3  So says Jehovah of Hosts, ....  go, and you shall strike Amalek and destroy all that he has. And you shall have no pity on him, and you shall put to death all from man to woman, from little one to suckling, from ox to sheep, from camel to ass.


God most certainly knew 9/11 would happen, in fact it was part of his plan.

Perhaps the confusion here is distinguishing between God's plan and God's will. 
Romans 9:19Thou wilt say, then, to me, `Why yet doth He find fault? for His counsel who hath resisted?'

This verse is asking who has resisted his counsel (his plan).  And the implied answer is NO ONE.  No one can do anything different than God's plan.  This is plan A - there is no plan B.

So YES, God's plan involves evil, war, even people crashing planes into buildings.  But is this God's will?  No!  God's will is that we should love one another and become an image of him.

See the difference between God's plan and his will?  His plan is a means to an end - his ultimate will. 

Cheers,
Legoman

Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #131 on: February 24, 2009, 11:07:51 PM »
How about this:  Do you believe God works all things after the counsel of OUR FREE WILL?  No that is not what the scripture says.  Everything is worked after the counsel of GOD'S WILL!


Thats simply taking a stance that it must be one way or another.  L, Ray  isn't so adamant to use the scriptures that continually admonish us to do good.   If God has determined things so strictly then we do not need to be told to do anything. God will make it happen and so it will be. 

So then we are left to determine what free will actually is when thats missing the whole boat and arguing for pet doctrines.   

If God does not include the liberty he allows for us within the boundaries that do exist in what he works then explain why we even need to be concerned with running the race if it is God who runs it for us?  It is God who determines I will be in jail or not, then if I want to go murder people then God determined that too.

What about the person who simply hears this nonsense and does give up?  Is that just whatever will be will be?

What kind of a God determines that a person will hear this message and go kill themself because they find no hope in it?    Whatever, huh?





« Last Edit: February 24, 2009, 11:12:56 PM by Paul Hazelwood »

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #132 on: February 24, 2009, 11:37:51 PM »
How about this:  Do you believe God works all things after the counsel of OUR FREE WILL?  No that is not what the scripture says.  Everything is worked after the counsel of GOD'S WILL!


Thats simply taking a stance that it must be one way or another.  L, Ray  isn't so adamant to use the scriptures that continually admonish us to do good.   If God has determined things so strictly then we do not need to be told to do anything. God will make it happen and so it will be. 

Its God's plan, so He will make it happen.  Isaiah 46:10-11 confirms it:

Isaiah 46:10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
 11Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.


He declares it, purposes it, and brings it to pass.

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So then we are left to determine what free will actually is when thats missing the whole boat and arguing for pet doctrines.   

If God does not include the liberty he allows for us within the boundaries that do exist in what he works then explain why we even need to be concerned with running the race if it is God who runs it for us?  It is God who determines I will be in jail or not, then if I want to go murder people then God determined that too.

Look at it this way.  "Why do we need to be concerned with running the race if God determines everything?" 
This sounds an awful lot like the argument ETers say regarding UR:  "Why did Jesus need to come If God will save everyone anyways?" 
And the answer is the same.  Its the process that matters.  God is imparting an experience to each of us - an experience of good and evil.

We needed a savior to save us, so God sent his son.  And likewise, we need to become righteous.  This will happen on God's timetable - the few chosen elect first and everyone else later.  So part of this is being instructed to run the race in a way that we might win it.  Even if we were predetermined to fail, it will be for God's purpose for us.

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What about the person who simply hears this nonsense and does give up?  Is that just whatever will be will be?

What kind of a God determines that a person will hear this message and go kill themself because they find no hope in it?    Whatever, huh?

Proverbs 20:24 A man's steps are directed by the LORD.    How then can anyone understand his own way?
Jer 10:23 I know, O LORD, that a man's life is not his own;  it is not for man to direct his steps.

No its not just whatever will be, will be.  Its whatever God declares, will be.  God imparts to each person their measure of faith:

Romans 12:3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.


One will only believe when God opens their eyes, and only if they have faith (which was given by God).

Job 14:5 Man's days are determined;
       you have decreed the number of his months
       and have set limits he cannot exceed.


God declares when we will die, and by implication how we will die, so yes that would include suicide, murder, war, etc.

The scriptures seem rather clear on this matter (to me).  Its just a question of whether we believe the scriptures or not.

Legoman

Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #133 on: February 24, 2009, 11:47:59 PM »
The scriptures seem rather clear on this matter (to me).  Its just a question of whether we believe the scriptures or not.



 

My point is that God does "work" all things and part of what he works is our choices and our choices may indeed be limited according to Gods counsel, but they are still there.  I think the issue Cat raises is if there is any responsibility on the part of man to work at preventing child rape or is there just nothing we can do about it at all?





Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #134 on: February 25, 2009, 12:05:24 AM »
My point is that God does "work" all things and part of what he works is our choices and our choices may indeed be limited according to Gods counsel, but they are still there. 

Ah - yes, agreed.  I tried to say that in my long post but perhaps it wasn't clear.  Even though God works everything for his purpose, and even though that includes our choices, it is still us who makes the choice.  The man who is commiting a murder or rape has made a very evil choice, even though the circumstances have influenced and even caused him to make that choice - in his mind, he was the one who chose to do the evil act, and he will be accountable for that (Romans 14:12).  The man is accountable even though it could not have happened any other way.  Remember God only has one plan for everything - plan A.

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I think the issue Cat raises is if there is any responsibility on the part of man to work at preventing child rape or is there just nothing we can do about it at all?

Yes of course we should try to prevent evil - God commands us to - it doesn't mean we will always succeed but we must try.  That is part of what we are supposed to learn in this life - what is evil, and how do we become free from it so we can be righteous.

Are we responsible for stopping evil?  Are we even reponsible for the evil we commit?  Ray covers this in one of his papers:  Man is accountable, God is responsible.

Man is accountable because (like I said above), it was the man who chose to do his actions.  We will all be accountable someday for what we have done, whether good or bad.  I believe there will be a lot of shame in that day when we are held accountable, and realize what we have done.

However God takes ultimate responsibility.  He is the one who will correct every wrong (through the process of judgement and the lake of fire), and reconcile everyone and every thing with him, and eventually He will wipe away every tear.  So the little girl who is brutally murdered, and even her murderer, will be corrected, and both will be reconcilled.  Everything will be made right and we will have gained an experience of good and evil so we can be made righteous.

Isaiah 26:9 My soul yearns for you in the night; in the morning my spirit longs for you.
       When your judgments come upon the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.


Cheers,
Legoman
« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 12:08:07 AM by legoman »

Cat

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #135 on: February 25, 2009, 12:09:45 AM »
The scriptures seem rather clear on this matter (to me).  Its just a question of whether we believe the scriptures or not.



 My point is that God does "work" all things and part of what he works is our choices and our choices may indeed be limited according to Gods counsel, but they are still there.  I think the issue Cat raises is if there is any responsibility on the part of man to work at preventing child rape or is there just nothing we can do about it at all?


Paul are you playing Devil's advocate?? :mshock:  

Let me ask you and Legoman this?  (I'll assume a few things if I may, to get my point over)  Just as you may have felt in your heart that something was wrong with the doctrine of eternal torment in hell's flames- don't you feel the same UNEASE with the idea that God purposes a child to live a brief few weeks only to be raped and killed?  What possible purpose does that serve to God? The child isn't old enough to have learned a lesson?  Or was it for the sole purpose of 'teaching' the sick b****** who did it some kind of lesson? Really???? IF they are sick in the head they aint gonna learn any lesson.  Sorry I keep using this horrible example but I need to get this point across.  I could no longer accept that to be true, than I would accept God tortures people for ever in hell.....

Legoman, I just say your last post.  I don't understand how you differentiate between 'choice' and 'freewill'?  Why are they not the same?? Or am I not understanding you?
« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 12:14:14 AM by Cat »

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #136 on: February 25, 2009, 12:23:07 AM »
Let me ask you and Legoman this?  (I'll assume a few things if I may, to get my point over)  Just as you may have felt in your heart that something was wrong with the doctrine of eternal torment in hell's flames- don't you feel the same UNEASE with the idea that God purposes a child to live a brief few weeks only to be raped and killed?  What possible purpose does that serve to God? The child isn't old enough to have learned a lesson?  Or was it for the sole purpose of 'teaching' the sick b****** who did it some kind of lesson? Really???? IF they are sick in the head they aint gonna learn any lesson.  Sorry I keep using this horrible example but I need to get this point across.  I could no longer accept that to be true, than I would accept God tortures people for ever in hell.....

Don't get me wrong Cat, I totally get where you are coming from.  The torture and murder of a young child is totally senseless and seems to serve no purpose.  There are some sick things that happen out there and I sometimes wonder why - I have a 4 year old daughter myself and try not to think about what could happen too much.

When I still believed in eternal torment, it even made less sense as I would wonder if the child was also going to hell...  With the truth of UR there is some sense of purpose as I know God will reconcile all and wipe away every tear eventually.

Now as to the possible purpose:  I really have no idea - I am not God... perhaps it is to teach the SICK b****** some lesson down the line that will really humble him and show the glory of God.  I don't really know - God works in mysterious ways but we know that it is all ultimately for our good.

Again it all comes down to God's sovereignty:
- if God is sovereign
- if God creates evil
- if God causes wars and disease
- if God infact works everything according to his will

Then my logical mind (which is good at the math/computer stuff) can only come to the conclusion, that somehow, for some reason, God has a purpose for every evil act, even the evil act you mentioned.  I don't understand it, but I have faith there is a purpose for it.  It almost brings comfort to know there is some sense to all the evil in this world.

Hope that helps...
Legoman

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #137 on: February 25, 2009, 12:26:34 AM »
Legoman, I just say your last post.  I don't understand how you differentiate between 'choice' and 'freewill'?  Why are they not the same?? Or am I not understanding you?

A choice is just a selection between alternatives.  Even computers make choices, based on programming and input, and no one claims they have free will.

Here is the definition of free will:  Making a choice that is unconstrained by external causes (such as outside influence, divine intervention, etc).

What I believe we really have is an influenced will:  we make choices that are influenced (constrained) by external causes.

Read Ray's series on free will, it is explained there well.

Cat

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #138 on: February 25, 2009, 12:31:27 AM »
Very interesting.  I will read it tomorrow, time permitting and I'll come back to you. I must go to bed.  I'm so tired.  Night night.....Thanks for your input.

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #139 on: February 25, 2009, 12:34:29 AM »
Very interesting.  I will read it tomorrow, time permitting and I'll come back to you. I must go to bed.  I'm so tired.  Night night.....Thanks for your input.

Take care Cat, and take some time to meditate and pray on this all.  Its a tough subject (life-changing I would say), and only God can really show it to you.

Legoman

Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #140 on: February 25, 2009, 12:37:47 AM »
  Even computers make choices, based on programming and input


Actually a computer does not make a choice, but to do what the programming and input determine.  

Even artificial intelligence is only an illusion and the computer cannot do anything apart from the intention of the programming, it makes no choice it operates at a predefined level the choices are made for it based soley on the program that is written.

If you write a defective program for a computer did it then make a bad choice or did it only operate in a manner dependant upon exactly what you wrote for it to do?  

Do you then encourage the computer to run a good race?




bobf

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #141 on: February 25, 2009, 12:41:59 AM »
Sorry I keep using this horrible example but I need to get this point across.  I could no longer accept that to be true, than I would accept God tortures people for ever in hell.....

What's the alternative Cat?

It seems to me that one of these must be true:
1. God is working all things after the counsel of His own will, including this kind of evil that we can not fathom
2. God is allowing these things to occur -- in which case He is equally culpable, since He could stop them
3. God is impotent to stop them
4. There is no God




bobf

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #142 on: February 25, 2009, 12:48:06 AM »
Actually a computer does not make a choice, but to do what the programming and input determine.

It makes a choice under the definition given by Legoman... it's just a rather mindless choice compared to the choices we make.  Also, God determined beforehand which choice pharoah would make.  It was still a choice.


Paul Hazelwood

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #143 on: February 25, 2009, 01:06:50 AM »
Actually a computer does not make a choice, but to do what the programming and input determine.

It makes a choice under the definition given by Legoman... it's just a rather mindless choice compared to the choices we make.  Also, God determined beforehand which choice pharoah would make.  It was still a choice.




Legomans definition is not at issue, scripture is.

So do you think encouraging a computer means anything and how does that relate to Gods encouragement for us in the same manner?   

bobf

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #144 on: February 25, 2009, 01:30:53 AM »
Legomans definition is not at issue, scripture is.

So do you think encouraging a computer means anything and how does that relate to Gods encouragement for us in the same manner?   


I don't like the computer analogy that much either, so I won't prolong it.   It raises more issues than it solves.  We do not make choices like computers so it's not a very helpful analogy (we have a mind, computers don't).  But it does serve to illustrate that making a choice involves selecting from alternatives using our minds.  There is no requirement that our choices be free from divine influence and pressure.  In contrast, some definitions of free will require that our choices be free from divine influence andr pressure.  So that is a difference between making choices and having a free will.  Making choices is scritpural, but that having a free will (under that defintition) is not scriptural.

« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 01:32:43 AM by bobf »

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #145 on: February 25, 2009, 01:43:55 AM »
  Even computers make choices, based on programming and input


Actually a computer does not make a choice, but to do what the programming and input determine.  

Well then we disagree here  :bigGrin:

A computer does make a choice based on its programming AND its input.

If I have a program that receives some input that you type on the keyboard, and then based on that input decides to display one screen of information or a different screen of information - then the computer has madr a simple choice.  Granted it could only choose between what it has been programmed to choose - but the programmer did give it the ability to choose based on the input.

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Even artificial intelligence is only an illusion and the computer cannot do anything apart from the intention of the programming, it makes no choice it operates at a predefined level the choices are made for it based soley on the program that is written.

Agreed, AI is neither artificial nor intelligent, it is just a really complicated program that makes a lot of decisions that give the appearance of intelligence.

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If you write a defective program for a computer did it then make a bad choice or did it only operate in a manner dependant upon exactly what you wrote for it to do?  

There are no bugs, only features  :winkgrin:  (If you are a software developer you will get this joke).

Anyway, no, if there was a bug in the program, that is not a "choice".  The choice comes about as a result of the programming (whether its buggy or not) AND the input.

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Do you then encourage the computer to run a good race?

Now that's just silly... we would only do that if the computer had been programmed to understand what it means to "run a good race".

--

In a lot of ways, we humans are nothing more than a bunch of programming (our God-given abilities, experiences, what we have learned, etc) taking in a bunch of input (our environment, circumstances), and then making a choice.

I know its not a great analogy...  the main difference between us and a computer is that we are self-aware - although some might even debate that our "self-awareness" is just a bunch of more really complicated programming.

Legoman

Offline jabcat

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #146 on: February 25, 2009, 01:46:02 AM »
Hi guys.  Good points, possibilities, summaries and conclusions.  It would be good if we could veer this a bit toward the OP if we could, before others start to jump in and this turns into either a free will or divinely determined, free-for-all   :laughing7:.  Apologies, doin' my job :angry1:.     Thanks  :thumbsup:.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 01:55:39 AM by jabcat »
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline legoman

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #147 on: February 25, 2009, 01:58:50 AM »
No problem jabcat.

I was just thinking on Cat's point again about what the purpose of the evil in the world is, especially some of the really evil stuff.

Perhaps it is so we will learn to trust God - and I mean really trust God.  If God is really in control of everything, and God is good, then we should completely completely trust him that everything will in fact eventually work out for the good of all... even when the really bad stuff comes our way.  I can't wait for that moment when God is wiping away every tear, but I guess I will have to.

Hmm, thats still not on-topic for the original post  :winkgrin: so how about this:  God is the aionios God - he is the God of the ages, all the ages, including this age, right now, even this moment as you are reading this post.  God is working it all out on his timeline through the ages, and its going to be glorious when the ages are done!

Legoman

Offline jabcat

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #148 on: February 25, 2009, 02:04:17 AM »
Understood, difficult topics for sure, ones I personally contend with and have my own opinions and questions on...however, as you probably know, it's been deemed as too divisive a topic within the body here for us to be able to dwell on.  I like your ending summary, thanks  :2thumbs:.
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Cat

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Re: The 2nd biggest stumbling block (the aionios God)
« Reply #149 on: February 25, 2009, 10:47:57 AM »
Understood, difficult topics for sure, ones I personally contend with and have my own opinions and questions on...however, as you probably know, it's been deemed as too divisive a topic within the body here for us to be able to dwell on.  I like your ending summary, thanks  :2thumbs:.

I was going to suggest starting up a new thread to carry on debating these issues but your above comment is worrying me.  Are you saying we can't carry on debating these difficult things?  I need to get clear on this and if I can't sort it out here, I don't know where I will sort it out.  We are debating scripture and our understanding of it.  We are making sure of things and being like the Bereans.... :dontknow: