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6 years ago  ::  Jun 19, 2009 - 5:51PM #11
deVillenueve
Posts: 24

Jun 19, 2009 -- 3:46PM, spudette wrote:


De Villenueve, I agree that it would be wonderful if all human beings that ever lived, are now living and will ever be born, could be saved. However, from my reading of the Word, I understand that this will not be the case. Yes, it is true that there are many people who have never heard a single word about the True and Living God, but still, the Bible tells us that some instinctively obey God's law, and therefore will be saved because His Law is in their hearts. There is also a passage somewhere (I don't remember where, but I'm sure I can find it) that says something to the effect that, even if nobody speaks the Good News to other people, the very stones will speak.


[/quot


I would like to dwell on this just a tiny bit.  I made the observation that millions of people have been born, lived their lives and died without ever hearing a word or knowing one single thing about the Creator/God or Jesus and God's plan for the salvation of humanity.  In fact, millions have lived lives of being totally uncivilized, travelling in nomadic pacts in perpetrual  fear of predators and constantly facing famine, disease and natural calamities that occur in nature.  I observed that no doubt a high percentage of all the people who have ever lived in the world would fall into the category of those who have never heard of what we refer to as the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  In fact, even during the life and the time of Jesus, himself, He was not well known outside of a small geographical area of the world.


So I am understanding you to say that some (but not all?) of these millions of people will instinctively obey God's law.  (What about the rest?) And if nobody speaks the good news to these millions that stones will speak to them. (Do you mean literally "stones"?)


You see, these are the kinds of things that we, as Christians, cannot just gloss over and then go out and claim that we understand the workings of God and claim that we are equipped to tell the story to others in my opinion.  One answer that would work is that God just does not wish everyone to inherit His kingdom and His plan does not call for everyone having that opportunity.  This, incidently, would tie in pretty neatly with the doctrine of predestination.  No Incas or Mayan folks made it into the elect column!  No sir. Not one single one.


 


  


 


 

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 19, 2009 - 9:30PM #12
deVillenueve
Posts: 24

Spudette, the following website will give you a world of information about the very active ministry of PCUSA both in this country and world-wide.  Presbyterians are encouraged to engage in active ministry both as individuals and as a part of a myriad of organized activities.


www.pcusa.org/navigation/mission.htm


The Presbyterian Church Confession of 1967 states the following:


"The church disperses to serve God wherever its members are, at work or play, in private or in the life of society.  Their witness is the church's evangelism.  Their daily action in the world is the church's mission to the world.  Each member is the church in the world, endowed by the Spirit with some gift of ministry and responsible for the integrity of his witness in his own particular situation."


I hope this helps and that I have not misunderstood your question.

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 06, 2009 - 4:09PM #13
spudette
Posts: 959

De Villenueve, I am reading the book you have indicated about predistination. I do agree with some ideas the book presents, although not all of them. It is taking me quite a bit of time, because I want to understand, noit just skim over the book. I must say that I am beginning to understand a little more than I did before, even though I still can't see God creating even one single person for the specific purpose of destroying that person.


In the meantime, in order to keep this thread going, I'd like to ask you what is the position of the Presbyterian Church on the validity of the Ten Commandments for us today. As always, if you happen to disagree with the position of the Church, I am interested in knowing your personal position on this subject.


Blessings, my friend.

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 08, 2009 - 4:27PM #14
deVillenueve
Posts: 24

Jun 19, 2009 -- 3:57PM, spudette wrote:


Greenponder, I didn't mean to ignore your posting. I agree with you that God isn't saying that He is not powerful enough to save anyone. However, I believe that He wants us to follow Him out of love, not because we are being compelled to do so. That is why not everyone will be saved.


I also agree that we should never use any portion of the Word out of context. I am very careful never to do that. I also consider the whole picture that the Bible gives me. Nowhere does God give me the impression that He wants to force anyone's will, but He does give me the impression that, if we are willing to accept Him, He does want all of us to have eternal life. That will be the choice that every single human being must make: eternal life with God, or no life at all beyond this one.




Spudette, Presbyterians believe that a duty that God requires of every person is obedience to His revealed will.  The denomination teaches that this revealed will is made known to all in the Ten Commandments.  The first four commandments relating to our duty to God and the last six relating to our duty to our fellow man.


The Westminster confession contains this doctrine in detail as explained in Chapter 19.  The entire confession is readable online and pretty well spells out the entire doctrine of the Presbyterian church except as has been stated some of the harsher language has been mellowed over the years.  (We no longer refer to the Pope as the antichrist!)

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 09, 2009 - 6:54PM #15
spudette
Posts: 959
[/quote]


"Spudette, Presbyterians believe that a duty that God requires of every person is obedience to His revealed will.  The denomination teaches that this revealed will is made known to all in the Ten Commandments.  The first four commandments relating to our duty to God and the last six relating to our duty to our fellow man.


The Westminster confession contains this doctrine in detail as explained in Chapter 19.  The entire confession is readable online and pretty well spells out the entire doctrine of the Presbyterian church except as has been stated some of the harsher language has been mellowed over the years.  (We no longer refer to the Pope as the antichrist!)"


De Villenueve, I couldn't agree more with the principle of obedience to God's Law as revealed in the Ten Commandments. I am about to ask you a question that I have asked other people before, and I must admit that the question usually starts all kinds of (sometimes) bitter arguments. My qestion is, if the Presbyterian Church teaches obedience to the Ten Commandments, why doesn't she teache obedience to the 4th? Most people tell me that Jesus taught that all we need today is, first to love God, and second to love our neighbor.  That is true, but it doesn't mean that we don't need to obey all ten of the Commandments, since the first four deal with our loving God, and the last six deal with our loving our neighbor. People have told me that we don't have to obey the Ten anymore, but what they seem to mean is that we don't need to obey the 4th. I disagree very strongly with that, of course, but I am interested in your opinion.


One more question: yoiu have mentioned that you have posted under a different name. Would you be willing to tell me under what name?


Blessings.

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 21, 2009 - 3:49PM #16
CalKnox
Posts: 330

Those not believing in a Sovereign Creator God, "In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:" (Eph. 1:11) follow a sub-biblical God doing the best he can.  All men are justly condemned and on their way to hell for their sins.  All are born dead in trespasses and sins, unable to do themselves any spiritual good.  All their choices, even their best, are filthy rags before God meriting nothing.  We are not saved because of our choice to believe in Jesus.  Faith does not save.  We are saved by the redemptive atoning death of Jesus on the cross for the sins of his elect.  By God's grace, word and the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit, he effectually calls his elect, enabling and inclining them to embrace his promises offered in the Gospel.  We are saved by grace through faith; and faith is the gift of God to his people. Those who do not see these things are reading the Bible selectively.  God is a holy God of love and justice.

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 21, 2009 - 3:51PM #17
CalKnox
Posts: 330

As said elsewhere, the Presbyterian confessions do teach obedience to all God's commandments, including the 4th.

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 24, 2009 - 1:09PM #18
BBarton
Posts: 1,670

Jun 17, 2009 -- 2:26PM, spudette wrote:


I am starting this thread because I am not a Presbyterian, and I am interested in understanding other people's beliefs. This is only for people willing to share their beliefs in a spirit of Christian love and understanding. If anyone feels hostile when a non-Presbyterian asks a question, please refrain from posting here.


 My first question is this: How do you reconcile the belief that God created one group of humans for the specific purpose of saving them, and another group for the specific purpose of damnation, with the scripture I am quoting below?


2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
KJV





So if God so loved the world and if Jesus was willing to be the sacrificail lamb for all creation, why would we think either God or Jesus failed in the mission to save all creation?  I don't think they failed, I think we and our religions fail to realize the magnitude of divine grace.  Jesus said he came not to judge, but to save...  How easy it is to push him off that throne and to judge when he forgave.  Peace. 

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5 years ago  ::  Jul 24, 2009 - 4:24PM #19
CalKnox
Posts: 330

Scripture clearly shows Christ sitting on a throne of judgment also (e.g. Matt 25; Rev. 20). 


Are you a universalist, believing all humans and angels are eventually saved?

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5 years ago  ::  Aug 11, 2009 - 11:17PM #20
spudette
Posts: 959

Cal, it's good to hear from you. It has been a long time. My computer has been down for quite a while, it is finally up and running again.


BB, I don't think anyone here is judging where God forgives. I don't think anyone can say whether everyone will be saved or not, because this is not our call to make. If you take the whole Bible,  there is a clear indication that universal forgiveness and salvation is not a given. If it were, the Bible would not need to tell us about the second death. However, I think that we should pray that at least all the people who are living today or yet to be born would come to God in repentance, because I keep thinking about God sending Jonah to Nineveh to tell the people there that they ALL would die because of their sins, yet all those of that time repented and didn't die. For the people who are already dead, their eternal fate is already sealed, of course.


I also don't think that God's plan of salvation failed, far from it. I believe that It is His will that all come to repentance and be saved, but that each person has to make that choice. God doesn't force anyone to serve Him, or love Him. I do believe that God knows who will come to Him and who will not, but that He leaves each person free to make the choice.


I will ask again the question I asked before, as I am interested in the opinions of each person who posts in this thread: Do you believe that we are required to obey all Ten Commandments ? DeVillenueve, I am particularly interested in your response.


Blessings to all of you, my friends.


 

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