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Thursday, February 16, 2006

Comments on Predestination - 2006

Predestination vs Free Will:

Please note - Near the end of this Blog section was hit by a spam bot advertising medications on it, sorry for the inconvenience. I am removing these but process is slow due to so many unauthorized postings.

The Calvinist – Armenian debate has created confusion. One side basically states that God selects people to be sent to Hell based on some sort of Sovereign arbitrary selection process. The other side says, no, God foreknows who are his and who are not – that people send themselves there. I know that this is an over simplification of both sides of this long standing debate but that is the basic premise for both. OSAS vs Arbitrary selection, what is the answer, if any to this debate?

Since my book dealt with this subject in part, I will begin to post brief writings on this topic that may help both sides see the beauty of God’s Sovereignty in a whole new light. It is my prayer that within these writings – the debate will cease being a debate and people find common ground.

B. W. Melvin
Author: A Land Unknown: Hell's Dominion


Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

When I was a kid, I loved playing Rock’em Sock’em Robots. Blue verses red. I always chose the red robot. Bam slam pop goes the head! Great fun! The Calvinist – Armenian debate reminds of these two robots going after each other each time I read the two sides. Slam – pow! Off goes some ones head till next round.

Here are some points to consider.

Proverbs 16:4 is often misquoted to support something contrary to scripture. It states, “The LORD has made everything for his own purposes, even the wicked for punishment,” NLT.

Other translations use the word evil, doom, calamity instead of punishment. It does not matter what English word is used the idea is that God uses the wicked in a day of punishment, evil, doom, calamity. This passage does not imply that God makes the wicked to be punished, doomed, or evil. That line of thought is contrary to the bible and what it teaches.

Instead it tells us that God uses the wicked to punish the proud, the wicked, and even the righteous when they stray. Note Proverbs 16:5, “The LORD despises pride; be assured that the proud will be punished.”

The wicked are used by God to issue forth punishment is what the Bible says. This is backed up in the bible – Deuteronomy 7:9-10, Deuteronomy 8:17-20. The testimony of God’s dealing with ancient Israel also bears witness to this fact.

When Proverbs 16:4 is misquoted to support the view that God picks a person out to be wicked so they can be punished violates Ezekiel 18:23-32. That interpretation also mocks the best potter and clay story in the bible found in Jeremiah 18:2-10:

“Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.” Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.

“Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying: “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the LORD. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel! The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.” NKJV

The vessel was marred by the hand of the potter. The picture is this; the clay began to wobble and collapsed back onto the spinning wheel. This is what marred suggest. What is being said here is what is being said, “so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make… The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it.”

In other words, God can change the design and make us as He wills dependant upon what?

God does not need to be a divine Puppeteer. He can simply speak. God is reasonable and understands the nature of the clay He has made for the wheel. Ask a potter or try a potter’s wheel yourself. Clay has a mind of its own they’ll tell you. It wants to remain in a clump, soak up all the good water, and do nothing as well as collapses on the wheel. You must have power over the clay to shape it, if not, it remains a useless clump.

God speaks, we can respond because God speaks. What does Jeremiah 18:11-12 reveal? God is definitely not a salve to the whimsical choices of humanity but He still offers a return – a return to service to Him, nevertheless. Why tell someone they can repent but not mean it, if they cannot but rather made not to repent?

The message of the Potter and clay is not blind selection. It is shaping the clay for service. God foresaw how sin entered the world and made the clay filthy. God knows what is now in the clay: pride, fear, lust, all manner of sin that turns one away from serving God. Therefore, He designed the clay to be shaped by His word, what He speaks, declares, ask, so it can be of service to Him again, however He pleases.

God ask us to return to Him. God knows our answer before we do and therefore shapes the clay. Will the clay remain marred or of un-tempered clay, or will it be refashioned and purified by the kiln’s fire? God only knows.

How we respond to God’s call to service is our own responsibility, not God’s. This is where the heart of this debate resides. If you say what I stated, you are pounced on as making God out to be a poor helpless being who sits on some distant throne hoping that His people will use their "free will" and let Him save them and miss the point entirely.

Rock’em and Sock’em keep on boppin. I personally dislike the phrase Free Will but am forced to use it as that is the term what so often used. Our response is not based on Free Will but rather on God’s calling to us. He designed us for service. He is calling us back. He designed us to be in His image, with the ability to think, reason, decide, and even relent as He does. Please do not forget this. The gifts and callings of God are without what?

God made us from the earth, clay and breathed His breath of life into Adam. He made the first clay pure in service to God tending and keeping Eden. The clay of the heart became defiled through the temptation. Now our heart’s ability to think, reason, decide, and even relent has become filthy in service to self. None would serve God again, unless God designed the clay to respond to His hand.

The clay was designed to respond to God’s call, His word, with the liberty to remain either a useless lump of dirty clay or to become a vessel, servant of God as originally designed with the kinks and filth removed by the fire of God’s kiln on this earth.

That is how the clay was made, to respond to the master potter’s hand – the hand of His word. Therefore, He can shape us for His good pleasure as He wills and He Himself remains pure and not the author of sin.

Isaiah 46:10-13 tells us to listen to God? Why if He designed the wicked to doom?
Psalms 115 tells us to trust and fear the Lord? Why, if one cannot?
Daniel 4:34-37 reveals that God can do what He pleases to restore a lost soul – note verse 37.
Psalm 33:8-22 Tells us God speaks. How can anyone Hope, Revere, and Love God if they could not respond to what God speaks and reveals about Himself to make His plan known?
Proverbs 21:1-3The Lord weighs the heart. Interesting…No wonder He can direct our steps Psalms 37:23-24, Proverbs 20:24-27, God foreknew us before we were ever born and places us where we need to be. He leads us how? Psalms32:8-9, Isaiah 30:20-22.

Psalm 139:1-16, How is one ordained fashioned by God? He searched and knows all our ways before we were yet born. He knows who can be of service to Him and who refuses this service, yet, lets us still decide. In the light of Ezekiel 18:23-32 and Jeremiah 18:2-10 we can see that the justice and mercy of God can change and refine the clay. God calls, we respond.

We were simply made that way. God knows what really is in the clay, we do not. Such knowledge is too profound for us to fully fathom. We do have a certain amount of liberty granted by God that God still controls without the need of the arbitrary strings of selection. Instead, He speaks shapes and molds us for service. God ask, choose this day whom you will serve! You have a destiny – choose wisely.

When God called to nation to repent in the Old Testament; He called to everyone in that nation. He let them decide. That ability to decide is a gift from God; part of His image given to humanity. Likewise, He offers to everyone in the world to become born again, but not all will. He still ask and speaks pleading to those that will hear His truth. God cannot help but know who will and who will not. He still calls demonstrating how fair, just, and right God is to Himself and also to us.

God knows who are His, will be His, and who can become His through His call of service and even what we’ll do. Yet, we fight each other like Rock’em and Sock’em and the lost mock and laugh, others stumble and fall, still others justify themselves as doomed and never able to be saved. What a tragic shame! And I am just as guilty for this as anyone else! Therefore:

Jeremiah 10:23-24, “I know, O LORD, that a man's life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps. Correct me, LORD, but only with justice not in your anger, lest you reduce me to nothing.” NIV

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Proverbs 16:4 “The Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of doom.” KJV

This verse is often cited to support the conclusion that some people were created wicked by God solely for the expressed purpose of sending them to hell. Does this verse really support this view? The answer is no. Even the next verse, Proverbs 16:5, in direct context, explains the meaning further: “The Lord detest the proud of heart; be sure of this; They will not go unpunished,” NIV

Never take a verse as a proof text that does not line up with others that contradict it. For example a few more scriptures are: John 3:16, Lam. 3:31-33, Ezek. 18:30–32; 33:11. There is truly a different interpretation that also lines up with Isaiah 45:7-13 contexts as well as what Psalms 9:15-20 [verse16] reveals. It is this:

God uses the wicked for his own purposes as well as the wicked “answering” to their own wickedness. The heart of wickedness is control, to rule like god, to be in charge. When the wicked become instruments of God, God shows all, who is really in charge. The wicked are the ones that quarrel with God over control. [note - Ezekiel 28:17]

They want to be the potter and command the works of God. Instead it is they that are being used by God and made a public spectacle out of. This the bible teaches in abundance.

The wicked justify their works by saying God made me thus – a king, ruler, important, killer, terrorist, etc… Hence, they quarrel with God over control; God has the last laugh, He is in charge and can make them eat grass if He so wishes. That is what the potter and clay parable reveals.

Next point, remember, we are all vessels of wrath. Jeremiah 18:5-10 explains the potter and clay story. They same lump of clay. Clay that became unrighteous before God because of sin, God can shape based on what? Verse 8 tells us if they repent.

How can they repent if they are not told too i.e. notified, called out too? How beautiful are the feet of them that bring good news. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. It comes back to God’s call based on his deep foreknowing that predestines.

God is engaging something with humanity and demands a response. Humans were designed by God to be able to respond. If not, then faith does not come by hearing but rather by selective election.

Now back too Proverbs 16:2-5. A person’s motives are weighed by the Lord – the Lord detest the proud of heart, God declares they will not go unpunished. Therefore, God fashions them for a day of doom, punishment. Why, they quarrel with God and use the, ‘you made me do it’ argument to justify their crimes, actions, and deeds. God has the last laugh as He is in charge, not they. The wicked are ensnared by the works of their own hands and are held accountable.

They can even be fashioned by God to be instruments of his will delivering punishment to his people because his people wandered away from God. [Deuteronomy 28:25].

The reason why there is a debate is that we fail to look fully at the author and finisher of out faith; Jesus Christ. We stop looking at God and seek him. We do not spend time gazing upon God and seeking Him to understand His Nature and Character – who He is. God desires to make Himself known, He wants us to seek Him and ask questions.

It is here, you’ll discover the answer of this debate. The correct answer will point directly to the author and finisher of our faith; Jesus Christ – our God and savior, revealing who He is. Looking at who He is, answers the debate. Stray from this vantage point – you’ll stagnate on certain truths that can create strife and every evil work. Look upon the Lord, you’ll find rest and peace that comes from above.

When I return, I’ll pick up and show you how God’s Nature and Character answers the debate. For now, I hope you can see how Proverbs 16: 4 is oft misquoted and misunderstood. Truly, what a man sows, that he also will reap.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

A Discourse On God’s Nature and Character which reveals His will concerning Election’s Foreknowledge, Predestination, Calling, Justification, and Glorification as Romans 8:29-30 and 1 Peter 1:2, and Ephesians 1:3-22 and 1 Corinthians 2:7-10 reveals.

Part One

God doesn’t need angels, creation, or humanity. He is completely self sufficient and needs no one. But yet He created! Why? We may, in this mortal life, never fully understand why God chose to create but thank God He did or we would not be.

The bible grants clues and glimpses into why He created. If you are wise enough to put the pieces together, you’ll gain a brief glimpse of God’s eternal Glory! God is a God of the living is a statement Jesus used to reveal God the Father. You can say correctly that God creates life in order to be true to Himself, true to who He is, true to His nature, and thus true to His will.

What does the bible reveal about God’s character and nature? First, God cannot deny Himself; 2 Timothy 2:11-13. He is true to His word and His Gifts He gives. God is true to Himself. This is a snapshot of insight into why God created. Summed up, God created to simply be true to Himself, true to be who He is, be true to His nature, and character which reveals His will, plans, purposes.

Let’s look at more of the divine snapshot the Bible gives of God.

The bible further reveals God’s Nature and Character: God is sovereign, eternal, omnipotent, Holy – Isaiah 46:9-10, Psalm 90:2, Revelations 19:6, 1 Peter 1:15; God is absolutely wise, has total understanding, and is supremely intelligent – Proverbs 3:19; God is good, merciful, gracious, and desires to make His ways known to us - Psalms 103:7- 22. God cannot create sin, God does not lie, etc. The list goes on and I suggest that you also study the Names of God used in the bible to gain more insight about His Character.

God offers Gifts and these Gifts are without recall – Romans 11:29; God is fair, equitable – Psalm 98:9, Malachi 2:6.God as to His nature is Love, 1 John 4:16. God is Righteous and exercises perfect circumspect Justice – Psalm 119:137, Isaiah 11:4. God is all knowing - Psalm 139:2-24, Isaiah 41:4, Isaiah 40:2831. God can change His mind – Genesis 6:5-8, Jeremiah 18:8. God can choose - Isaiah 41:8-10.

Remember: His judgments are equitable, just and right regarding how he chooses and thus not understanding how these work leads to an error in truth about God [this is what we will be looking at soon enough but for now, we will need to back up and ponder God before proceeding]

God created in order to demonstrate that He is all these things; How can God verify He ‘loves’ if none exist to love? How can God be Righteous, Just, Merciful, if there were none to demonstrate this too? How can God prove He is equitable, fair, and exercises justice if none exist for this purpose? God cannot deny Himself. To Himself he remains true. No wonder the Heavenly Angels shout “Glory to God, God Most High so worthy to praised! We exist for God! Glory Be! Amen and Amen!

Luke 20:38, “God is a God of the living and all live to Him,” and again in Revelations 4:11, “All things were created for thy pleasure, purpose, will – they exist.” Can you see the snapshot?

If you do not understand these points about God, you can get the wrong picture about God and end up staining God’s nature, character, and will without fully realizing that you have.

That is what the debate of predestination has clearly fostered: confusion and discord. Is this from God or another source? If the answer you have does not honor God as to all that He is, as well as line up with who He is, you’ll end up not honoring God but rather honor one man’s idea over another at the determent of all.

This is not to say we cannot honor what men teach. Without such instruction, we may never learn. However, does what man teach line up with God’s nature and character in such a manner that it poses no contradictions to God’s very nature and character revealed throughout the entire bible? Herein is how to find the correct answer. It is God’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom, and for you and I too seek Him – Proverbs 2:1-9.

Let’s continue: can the doctrine you and I hold concerning predestination, election, God’s choosing, measure up to the standards of God Himself without any contradictions and contorted scripture weaving?

One side of the debate states that God is sovereign and since this is fact, God selects this one for Hell and another for Heaven, and thus fashions them so. God is made out to a nice sovereign bully damning people to hell for the sin He created in the devil and permitted to spread to humanity. Galatians 6:9, according to this view should read, “What God sows, man will reap, so shut the blank up and how dare you question God’s sovereignty you potted clay basket case!”

It is this very attitude that creates strife. I would say the Holy Spirit of God in many Christians is grieved and insulted by this attitude which the attackers fortify with misunderstood scripture quotes to back such a claim. How can you answer it?

If you point out all the scriptures that speak of God letting man choose this day whom they’ll serve, and empathize with the ability to think and reason without constraint that suggest that the human agent is a free moral instrument designed by God you are accused of having an ugly self will rising up and not fit to be listened too.

On the other hand, overemphasizing human free will can lead to errors of believing that humanity can chose God without God’s intervention. This is equally in error as the other and can lead to a Universalism that denies the righteousness and just recompense of God.

However, the majority of those that hold to the doctrine known as ‘free will’ really do not believe that the human agent can choose God on their own. They instead feel the Holy Spirit grieved by the other sides insult. They are at a lose to explain their position without being wrongfully accused of having ‘ugly self will’ raising up within them and waste endless hours in debate with baseball bat Christian’s accusations.

Soon you have an ugly Christian fist fight while the world watches and mocks God at the light we so shine. Glory be! Or salt is wasted tossing it at each other instead of reflecting Our Lord and Savior – Jesus Christ to the world. We are not known by our love but rather the size of our fist, instead!

Is there an answer to this debate: Yes! It is found by comparing the nature and character of God with your doctrine and then be humble enough to change when God’s nature and character demands it.

First things first please read Proverbs 1:2-7 and I’ll continue at another hour or day as God so wills and explore this further.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Let’s continue with where I left off. Please note that in this next brief discourse I did not use scripture references as many were used before.

In the upcoming dialogues there will be abundant scripture references verifying what I write. However, this current discourse is filled with scripture as those with knowledge of the bible will recognize: Therefore…

Let’s look at God’s sovereignty.

Of course God is absolutly sovereign and actively guides the affairs of humanity, including you and me. God is not passive nor watches in complacent idleness. He is vigorously involved leading and directing the universe and creation to His final goal – A New Heavens and Earth.

A sparrow cannot fall without God’s design for it too. God knows the number of our days on this planet, the hairs on our body. God uses the wicked for his own purposes. He directs our steps toward a goal – repentance. The lot is cast into the lap but the final outcome comes from God. All these things the bible boldly teaches about God’s sovereign nature; Scriptures to numerous to permit doubt about this.

The majority of Christians agree with this: God is actively in control and not passive. He did not wind some proverbial clock and then forgot to set the alarm failing to wake up from His seventh day rest. The eyelids of the Lord test the sons of men is a truer statement than most realize. What do you really do when the boss is not watching?

The question is not that God is active or passive but rather How He exercises his sovereign plans, purposes, will. It is our neglect to seek God on this matter that has caused so much confusion. It is our failure to explore how God demonstrates who he is through the attributes of his nature and character that has caused so much current discord between the brethren. We need to examine these divine attributes of God to find the answer to the debate. This is what I am attempting to do.

The attributes of God’s nature and character reveal in a snapshot how he governs the universe. Neglect this, you will discover the wrong picture of God and can end up staining his name without even knowing it. Yes, God is watching.

Interesting that Jesus tells us to ask in accordance to His name. In the bible, a name reflects the character of an individual. If you begin to grasp God’s character, you’ll ask according to His will. You ask thusly in accordance to Christ name and then what? What is to be revealed? Our nature and character or God’s?

As you can see, it is important to know God. Now, let’s apply this to God’s nature and character regarding how he actively controls all the affairs of men and the universe.

As stated before, God is just, righteous, perfect in all His ways. God cannot sin, nor can He lie. God is fair beyond human comprehension. God exercises a profound circumspect justice way beyond our realm. God’s love tests the hearts of those he made intelligent and wise. God’s love is way beyond our own. God alone is wise, truly all powerful and sovereign.

How then does He govern? His righteous and perfect ways displays a thoughtful fairness to how He governs. His profound circumspect justice displays action and holds accountable those He test. His ways are right and pure. You can say his awesome love guides his justice, steers his righteousness that directs his mercy, etc, which reveals all of himself to those He created; thus, clearly demonstrating that God is truly all powerful to none other than himself.

He is fair. He causes the rain to fall on the just and unjust. He created beings with intelligence and wisdom to reason on their own. How can he be all powerful if he cannot control free minded beings? This matches and proves the equity, fairness, righteousness, justice, love, mercy, grace and greatness of God perfectly. If God cannot govern free minded beings, He cannot be all powerful. We were created for His good pleasure.

God cannot sin nor does he create sin, nor does God tempt one to sin i.e. makes one sin. He does not make the wicked, wicked. The wicked are ensnared by the works of their own hands. Free minded beings, angels and human beings, create sin. Now ponder this, God still remains in control; proving his divine nature and character through all this. Wow, that is truly absolutely all powerfully sovereign! God has a divine plan. Hint: it takes heat to remove dross.

This demonstrates how truly awesome God is – designing us in a manner that proves He is all powerfully sovereign way beyond what we can even imagine! He permits, by his divine design, for us and even the angels, the ability to think and morally reason independently and then still is able to reach His desired goal. That is sovereignty! Think on this for awhile.

This does not mean that we can chose God on our own, or earn our own way to heaven and God’s favor by earning points for good behavior. The initiative resides with God alone to save. His initiative does not violate his design that he graciously granted us.

God still remains in control of all things. God displays His initiative by engaging us with a call, a test. We were designed to respond gratis to God’s call, test. This proves God is right and fair and just, etc.

Responsibility teaches consequences. How else can we learn that we are really accountable for our acts as the bible plainly teaches. What a man sows, that He will also reap. This is right, just, fair, perfectly demonstrating a love and mercy profound.

God cannot deny Himself. To himself he remains true. No wonder all his faithful heavenly angels shout “Glory to God, God Most High, worthy to be praised, worthy of honor, and renown!” Yes, we do exist for God! Glory Be! Amen and Amen!

This ability we were designed with is a gift from God but from the clay of Adam we became corrupted by sin. God therefore shapes and molds the clay from this same lump. How does He do so and why?

If you can, match your answers to God’s Nature and Character. Do you see his will, plans, and purposes yet? You see, God truly does know all things. He has a plan. The first three chapters in Genesis reveals all that have I just said. We will go there next if time permits.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Genesis chapters 1-3 reveal so much that you rightly can say the entire plan of redemption is laid out within these three chapters. That is why I chose to look at these. Also from these chapters, we can spring into other parts of the bible to verify context and the themes under discussion.

Within these three chapters it reveals the manner how God actively governs the affairs of man and His creation. Why is this important? It helps answers the debate over foreknowing and predestination.

For example, some teach that God is basically a micromanager. According to this view they envision God doing and causing everything, like God made you sneeze today; or made the evil person attack the innocent. Or even that God caused you and I to go to the restroom at the most inconvenient times. Sounds silly, but that is what many believe.

Others teach that God is asleep at the wheel. Creation is on auto-pilot and before it all crashes, God awakes to save the day. Both these points of view miss how God governs the universe. They both do not line up with God’s nature and character.

There are also variations on these two basic themes but the import is still the same: does God govern and cause all things – or does God govern as a victim of chance? Both these basic views do not line up with God’s nature and character. They give a false view of God. You can even find scriptures that seem to support both perspectives. What’s the truth?

Genesis chapter 1 -3 helps us refocus on the truth about how God governs the universe and the affairs of humanity. Is he a micromanager? Or asleep at the wheel letting chance influence how he governs? Or just maybe there is something else we have missed?

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

The Beginning:

Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth...” KJV

Genesis 1:1-31 reveals much about God’s nature, character, and will. All I suggest is for you to focus on the ‘How’ God creates and not so much on the ‘why’ God created. As to why God created, I mentioned before that God created in order to demonstrate that He is all that He is to none other than Himself for whatever purposes, plans, and reasons only known to him. I do not know any better answer than that.

God creating out of nothing reveals that he is all powerful. It tells us God was wisdom and intelligence far above all. None can compare with God! He is the alpha and omega. He sees all, knows all, He is God. From the first chapter of Genesis, we can see he had a specific design and plan in mind when creating the heavens and the earth. This demonstrates God is all wise and all knowing.

All God needs to do is to speak and it becomes. Hebrews 1:3 tells us the Lord upholds the universe by the word of His power. Genesis 1:3-29 states that God said and it was so. Even now, higher mathematics and physics can measure and analyze how mass moves, the properties of gravity, and even without realizing it, see how God sets in motion the natural laws that keep the universe together.

Thus, one way God governs is by speaking. When God speaks, if he so wills, it will come to pass. His words set in motion events, laws of nature, give order to creation in multiplied symbiotic fashions; they establish life and set it all in motion. His words have left a lasting finger print from God which reveals that he created it all for himself for his good pleasure.

Again, God’s finger print on creation shows plainly an order to it. This order in the universe and on earth demonstrates to us something about how God governs the universe and all the affairs of life. Yes, all creation reveals God’s invisible attributes as Romans 1:20 clearly states - Lets’ look at a few of these revealed in the Psalms.

Psalm 104:1-35 reveals so much about how God governs rightly, fairly, justly, perfectly revealing who He is. At first reading you may be tempted to think God is micromanaging everything but is this really the case or is it uncovering something else about God?

Verse 24 – “O Lord how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them.” From this statement I hope you can see that He governs by a profound wisdom. In other words, he sets in motion creation to go a certain direction and intervenes often. Look at this more and read through the entire Psalm about animals.

When God feeds the animals this does not imply that God places food directly in the animal’s mouth. He designed them to eat certain things, at certain times, and places. God provides for them. The environment of the animal, its appetite, even its residue, all interact in an incredible display that keeps the earth alive and functioning. That reveals wisdom. He governs by this integrating wisdom that sets in motion a series of measurable events that display the handiwork of God.

He designs the animal to perform some function. A frog eats flies. Flies provide cleansing up of decaying things. God will send a fly to the frog to eat so there will not be an over abundance of flies. God designed the frog to catch and eat flies. It is left up to the frog to catch the fly that God sends. If the frog misses the fly, was it a micromanaged event by God for the frog to miss the fly? Or was the Frog learning how to catch flies proficiently as God designed?

It would not prove God fair or just for God to set the food directly into the frog’s mouth or zap it into its belly. This would violate the frogs design and demonstrate God not being truly all he is. Instead, as verse 27-30 reveals, these wait for their food. It is up to the beast, to go and get its food. Does this mean the frog or animals have free will? Certainly not, it was how the frog was designed. It is in the design. God fashioned the frog to eat flies, how the frog goes about this, is up to the frog according to God’s design.

This displays a deep wisdom at work. In other words, God governs by guiding, showing, directing, and also by direct intervention as needed; not by some forceful micromanagement style but rather with a profound deep wisdom that honors how the creature was designed and at the same time displaying the circumspect justice, wisdom, equity, perfect ways, of God in the treatment of what he created. It shows that God respects, and honors those He made, no matter how small. He’ll send the frog another fly.

Does God cook your breakfast for you? If he does, let me know so I can place my order. No, God does not govern motivated by blind chance either. If you are waiting for God to cook your breakfast, well, you’ll starve till you learn how to cook your own. God provides the food. You’ll have to fetch it. The bacon does not get into the frying pan by chance, it is placed by you. God designed you a certain way and sets things in motion.

God governs by setting things in motion and then overseeing, watching, showing, guiding, prompting, and when needed, direct interventions to get things back on track so to speak. The bible teaches this: Psalm111:1-11, Psalm 14:2, Psalm 11:4-5, Psalm 29:1-11, Psalm 32:8, Psalm 40:5, psalm 53:2, Psalm 94:11, Proverbs 3:19-20, Proverbs 15:3, Proverbs 16:1-3, Psalm 48:14, all are just a few examples of this.

God governs by a deeply profound wisdom. This means he sets in motion certain things and oversees the outcomes. In other words, He sets in motion the laws governing life and thus life moves in the direction that his laws govern. He actively watches over, guides, prompts, and when needed, directly intervenes.

Stay within those boundaries, all will be well. Stray, from them – you’ll starve and die. How you live, is up to you. That is a gift from God he will not recall, Psalm 68:18. What you do with the gift of life will be judged, Psalm 11:5-7, Ezekiel11:21. In this God proves all He is true, right and pure.

God governs by His wisdom, not ours. He governs by the word of His power which upholds the universe that sets it in motion. He oversees, watches, tests, shows, guides, prompts, and when needed, directly intervenes in this motion toward a specific goal.

Psalms 12:6 [7], “The words of the LORD are pure words, as silver tried in a crucible on the earth, refined seven times.” JPS

God has a plan. After God created, he saw everything he had made and beheld that it was very good… Genesis 1:31

The direction and course was set.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

As I stated before, God governs by use of an incredible wisdom, by his words that set in motion events. His style is one of guiding, testing, showing, directing, and even by direct intervention. God sets in motion the laws of physics and they are upheld because he placed them.

Look at Genesis 1:1-31. Notice it states that God said let there be light, and there was. God established the heavens. God no longer is vainly speaking let there be light over and over again as a micromanager. God set the light in motion. He gave light it laws, boundaries, which even human scientist can even now measure and predict what light can and cannot do.

God designed the frog. The frog will remain a frog as designed. It will not turn into a prince no matter how many secular evolutionist kiss it. The Frog lives within the boundaries it was designed it. God set that in motion. He even fashioned animals to adapt to the environment but the animals remain as they were designed and do what they do within the boundaries of the design. God said and it became so. This, the Genesis account tells us: God established creation and saw it was very good.

This reveals how he governs – by order, structure, laws that establish a functioning mechanism that runs as it was designed. Next, he governs by watching what He made, He beholds it and watches it unfold. He helps it, prompts it along, test it, and when needed directly intervenes.

This is my point:

Never build your theology on only one facet of how God governs. If one only seeks and reads the bible scriptures that only focus on God’s direct intervention, you might end up fatalistic – living in the never-never land of what ever will be will be. Thinking God made you sneeze or go to the restroom at the worst possible time. Never realizing that He designed the human body to run and function as it was designed. Dust or pollen gets in the nose; the body is designed to expel it with a sneeze. God did not make you sneeze – how he designed the body is what did.

Error creeps in and causes havoc amongst the brethren when we focus only on one truth at the exclusion of the others. Both sides of the debate have done this. Let’s return to the Lord Jesus Christ – author and finisher of our faith. Seek out how he does things according to his nature and character and you’ll find what his will is too.

Are you catching on to how God governs? And how each of the ways God governs, overseeing, testing, watching, showing, guiding, prompting, and when needed, directly intervening, how these all line up with God’s nature and character? Scriptural truth is overwhelming backing up what I am saying.

If you see this, then God’s foreknowing and predestination will begin to make sense and you’ll discover that God is more sovereign than you first thought or ever imagined.

I had to go through all this background so we can actually look at how God’s foreknowing and predestination allows certain things to be.

Next time I post I hope to explore how God designed man, and how a God who knows all, sees all, is everywhere, did not stop mans fall. Why and how the devil was planned to be in the garden. What was God up too?

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

A Step Back...

Can God change His mind?

I posted before that God can regarding to Genesis 6:5-8 and Jeremiah 18:9-10 quotes I made. Now, I need to step back and clarify this more, afterwards I'll return to the topic:

Malachi 3:6-7 and Numbers 23:19 states that the Lord does not change and that God will not change His mind – repent, relent. Yet in Genesis 6:5-8 and Jeremiah 18:9-10 it tells us that God does indeed repent, relent, change His mind. Is this a contradiction? Answer is, No.

Turn to Hebrews 6:13-16-20.It clears this up. Here it speaks of God making an oath. He swears by his oath. You can count on God’s oath for these reasons:

One: God does not lie
Two: God does not change his mind concerning His oath, his word.
Three: God will do what he says he will do to the utmost.
Four: God cannot deny himself
Five: Therefore, you can trust God and have complete faith in the Lord

Therefore you can count on God. What about Genesis 6:5-8 and Jeremiah 18:9-10 then? The answer is found in Hebrews 6:17, “Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.” NIV

God’s unchanging nature! Wow, amazing how the bible points to God’s nature. This is the very subject we have been talking about! God’s unchanging nature and character reveals who he is, how he acts, how he governs, etc.

God is righteous, reveals justice, is merciful, compassionate, loving, kind, exercises judgment, offers salvation, test, refines, and these are just a few attributes of his nature that does not change. Here are a few references from Psalms – Ps 19, Ps 11:4-7, Ps 18:6, Ps 36:5-10, Ps 42:8, Ps 94:14, concerning God.

There are simply way too many scriptures to list here that describe God’s unchanging nature. Now, how can God change His mind when the bible plainly says He cannot change his mind due to his nature?

The answer is discovered in his oath, his word he gave to us. Like his nature, this does not change. God keeps His word, oath. Let’s look at a few scriptures that concern oaths he has given us in direct context of what we are discussing.

Isaiah 55:7 “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the man of iniquity his thoughts; and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have compassion upon him, and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” JPS

Ezekiel 18:25-28, “Yet ye say: The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel: Is it My way that is not equal? Is it not your ways that are unequal? When the righteous man turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, he shall die therefore; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. Again, when the wicked man turns away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considers, and turns away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die” JPS

Ezekiel 33:19, “And when the wicked turns from his wickedness, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall live...” JPS

2 Chronicles 7:14, “if My people, upon whom My name is called, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their evil ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” JPS

Here are a few more references out of many: Psalm 7:9-17, Acts 17:30, Mark 6:12.

The point of it all:

As you can see, due to God’s unchanging nature, he will keep His oath and now that you have read part of his oath, praise God he is not man! He does not lie! He does not change! And most importantly God does not change his mind concerning his oath which is founded firmly in the cement of his unchanging nature.

God is righteous, shows justice, is merciful, compassionate, loving, kind, exercises judgment, offers salvation, test, refines, and these are just a few attributes of his nature that does not change. His oaths reflect his nature and character.

Aren’t you glad!

Hebrews 6:17, “Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.” NIV

Since God’s nature offers his oaths regarding repentance, he can change his mind about you and grant you eternal life. Therefore, that is why God relented from destroying humanity in Genesis chapter six and offers to repent when one also repents as Jeremiah 18:8 says. He made an Oath based on his nature and character – that cannot change.

Praise God he honors his word, his oath! He changeth not! He does not change his mind! He acts on what He speaks! He keeps his promises and fulfills them! Praise God!

Let’s get back on topic.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Genesis Study continued From June 14, 2006 11:23pm post...

What would happen if God decided not to be true to himself? He has that right. He is sovereign. If God chose to just wipe out all the angels and humanity, right now. Who could stop him? None could. God would be in his perfect right to do this, but he does not. Why?

God remains true to all he is. He remains true to his nature and character. Job 34:10-17 reveals much on this matter: “Far be it from God to do evil and do wrong that it would pervert justice. Can he who hates justice govern?” NIV

Job 37:23-24; “The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress.” NIV

It is not in God’s nature to do evil and wrong. He will not pervert justice and because of his fairness and great righteousness, he will not oppress. Also, Job 37:16 states God is perfect in knowledge. Psalm 18:30, “As for God, His way is perfect! The word of the Lord is tested and tried; He is a shield to all those who take refuge and put their trust in Him.” NIV

God’s ways are perfect; his word is tested and tried. God does not lie as Numbers 23:19 and Hebrews 6:13-20 state. It is God’s nature not to lie. It is his nature to do things perfectly. 2 Timothy 2:13, “If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.” NKJV

God cannot deny who he is. It is God’s nature to love, show mercy, do rightly, not lie, uphold and honor his word, all in accord to perfect justice, and dispense perfect judgment and recompense. All his ways are perfect. It is his nature to be all wise, all powerful, all knowing, be eternal, to be a creator, to be a God of the living, etc.

God is true to himself and all creation, angels, humanity were all created for God’s good pleasure, will, purposes. To prove himself to none other than himself that he is all that he is. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me and past finding out.

In Genesis chapter one, we see how God created and established the universe and this world. How he set in motion all things according to his grand design. But why did God do it this way? Why not just make everything perfect and right, without sin and the devil to begin with? Ever wondered this?

The answer is discovered in the very nature and character of God. God is being true to himself for his good pleasure. His ways are perfect. He is wiser than us. Isaiah 66:22 and Revelations 21:1-4 state that God’s plan involves a new heaven and earth as the old order will pass away. It will be a place where righteousness dwells, no sin, etc. We are living in the older. It takes time to remove dross – this demonstrates the fairness of God and displays his vast deep wisdom.

Psalm 12:6, “The words of the Lord are pure words, like silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.” NKJV

And God said, let there be light and there was. God had it in mind all along and intended the new to be inhabited for his good pleasure. Law of thermodynamics will also change. Think on it a bit more.

The old will be removed so the new can replace, and thus the new established forever: no sin, no sickness, no death, etc. Perfect arrives perfected perfectly. All God’s ways are perfect.

God wanted the new to be inhabited, but with whom? How can God create and not be fair to those he intends to live with? Should God deny them wisdom, knowledge, intelligence, splendor, and avoid any possible chance that these may turn on God himself and use his own nature as a tool to conceive and perform sin?

Should not a perfect just God stop this and avoid it? How can God be all powerful if he did? Would not God fear and thus not be perfect and not all powerful by not being able to control all things that can happen? God cannot deny who he is. His ways are perfect. He is all powerful.

Should God not instead let those he intends to live with have wisdom, knowledge, intelligence, and splendor learn responsibility that these carry on their own? This would match his just nature and demonstrate equity sublime, Job 34:10-17.

Job 37:23-24; “The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress.” NIV

In this God foresaw sin, the beginning to the end all in one split second of time knowing full well, his special beings will fall into temptation that could corrupt their wisdom, knowledge, intelligence, and splendor. This demonstrates God’s all knowing nature. He foresees who will and who will not and created them all anyway. God is fair!

He even made a plan to restore some that fall in such a perfect manner that it will astound all with the beauty of its equity, justice, and righteousness displayed. In this God proves himself, fair, righteous, just, merciful, all powerful, all knowing, all wise, etc and etc. He will perfect those restored, preparing them for their future habitation.

For those that will refuse of their own accord, God justly prepares their future habitation banished from God - Banished from a God so good, so fair, so just, so holy, so loving, so kind, so righteous, etc and etc as they desired and proved by their manner of life that they corrupt. Yes, God test the hearts. He judges. He foreknows corruption will never enter the new heavens and earth and makes it so, justly and rightly. How?

It would be the beings own accord to use their wisdom, knowledge, intelligence, and splendor as they desire. God designed them this way, a design that permits responsibility to be of their-own accord. Why? So that God remains true to himself: the author of life and not the author and father of sin. James 1:12-18Proving God fair, loving, and kind; Proving God all powerful and wise.

Job 36:3-12, Job 36:22-26, Psalm 9:16-19, Psalm 11:4-7. Psalm 14:2, John 3:5-6, John 3:15-21, Romans 8:18-39, Ephesians 2:6-9, Job 40:1-8, Job 42:1-6.

God is true to himself and all creation, angels, humanity - all were created for God’s good pleasure, will, purposes. God proves himself to none other than himself that he is all that he is. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me and past finding out. Glory to God and Amen!

Let’s continue and finally go to Genesis 1:26-31 and ponder our beginnings.

Friday, 16 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Review: I had to go through all this background so we can actually look at how God’s foreknowing and predestination allows certain things to be. Next time I post I hope to explore how God designed man, and how a God who knows all, sees all, is everywhere, did not stop mans fall. Why and how the devil was planned to be in the garden. What was God up too?

Current Continuation...

This brings us to how and why an all knowing perfect God created human beings the way we are, and knowing full well we would fall away from God. How could a sovereign God permit this? Should God not have done it another way? Is God at fault for sin and death? Is God asleep at the wheel or divinely in control in ways we don’t fully grasp?

God decreed, “And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.' and God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. God blessed them; and God said unto them: 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Gen 1:26-28 JPS/KJV

Notice the word image, reflection, semblance, used in various translations as well as the word translated as ‘likeness.’ These imply not a direct carbon copy but more as a representative – a reflection of God likeness. Not another God, not a carbon copy of God but rather a reflection of God on earth in order to tend and keep it. A reflection, if you will, managing the affairs of life on earth as God would the universe: or as humanity entrusted with the responsibility to manage God’s earth and its affairs of life under God’s direction.

Next, to be able to do this, humanity needs intelligence, wisdom, knowledge, the ability to learn, ability to reason, and the ability to think independently, and be responsible towards what God decreed here. These are also reflections, lower reflections, of God’s nature and character too. These are a gift from God. God gave these to humanity which proves He is perfect, right, just, fair, sovereign, all powerful, all wise, all that He is.

If God did not, then he would not be God. Think on this for awhile. Of course God could have designed us like ants – robotic in nature but how could a righteous, loving, merciful, gracious, just, all powerful God do so and remain true to his nature of being? Would not God have been afraid of foreseen outcomes – thus negating proving he is in Charge? God cannot deny himself.

God calls those things that are not as though they are the bible tells us. When God created the universe and earth – he had a plan; to make it perfect. We are living in the process now. Do not believe me? Read Revelations 21. Why the long arduous process? Answer, because God, for his good pleasure, reveals all He is throughout the process: His wisdom made manifest, His total sovereignty proved, that He is a God of the living and He is all that He is, as I have been stating throughout this discourse.

God is not afraid of foreseen outcomes. He is not afraid of making intelligent and reasoning beings, angels and humanity. He test and refines the design. He is actively involved in what he has created, proving to Himself that He is truly the great ‘I Am.’

Herein is a great truth that I reluctantly grant you – God cannot deny himself. This is how the devil became ‘the devil’ and how sin entered the world of men. Somewhere between Genesis 1:1-31 God must have created angels. There was a war in heaven as Revelations 12:7-9 states. When it occurred, I do not know but it did happen.

How else was the serpent in the Garden of Eden as Genesis 3:1-15, Ezekiel 28:13-19, and Isaiah 14:12-15 state? The devil drew a third of the angels with him? Where was the all knowing, all powerful, sovereign God Most High? Didn’t he foresee this? Could he not have stopped it and avoided all the pain, sin, and death? How could the devil get away with this, rebelling?

Job chapter 1 reveals an answer if you are wise enough to see it. Turn to Job 1:6-12. In verses 6-8 we read the account of Satan coming to test, not just Job, but God himself. Satan accuses God of putting a hedge about Job. The devil is attempting to trap God. This is the wisdom that the old covering cherub corrupted as Ezekiel 28:17 so states. What wisdom is that? Well, the knowledge of the fullness of God – that God cannot deny who he is. This is not weakness but rather perfect strength. God is perfect!

Why would the Lord God create such a being, knowing beforehand that it would turn into an evil being? Ezekiel 28:15 reveals more. That covering guardian Cherub was created perfect until wickedness was found within that being. This again shows how sovereign God is. God is fair and will do right and permit things to happen that proves He is in charge. He foresaw the corruption happening. It would not have been perfect to stop it but rather it would be perfect to control it justly and fairly.

The devil knows that God is righteous, loving, merciful, gracious, just, etc, remaining true to his nature. He attempts to use this knowledge to trap God and overthrow God, Isaiah 14:13-14. He tries to make God a liar, unfair, unjust, unloving, etc, to raise his throne above God. He does so with Job, seeing Job’s sin of self-righteousness, later revealed in closing chapters of Job, and saying in essence to God – “you are not that just and fair to let this pass, stretch out your hand against all Job has and Job will curse you.”

Job 2:1-7 again we see Satan trying to get God to violate his very nature and character but God has the last word – you cannot kill Job – his life must be spared. God is in charge. Even the devil had to obey. Then and there, the serpent lost. The devil was trying to get God to wipe Job out of existence. This would violate God’s life giving nature. God cannot deny himself.

You see, Jesus tells us in John 8:44 the devil is a lair and murder – not God. God instead brings life to them that hear His word – His call – His decree, John 8:51, John 10:28-29.

The devil murders those to do not want to hear. Slays families, relationships, everything a man/woman has, slays homes, children, flocks, crops, nations, slays with disease, destruction, and slays hope and dreams – anything to get one to curse God, Job 1:10-11, Job 2:4.

How does one curse God? Simple, like the devil, use God’s nature and character as an excuse to remain living a lie, accusing God, and living to entrap God; to disprove who God is just as the father of lies does. How? Misusing the nature and character of God for ones own advantage. God truly test the heart!

God has a moral law – which is none other than himself, his nature, his character revealed. God foresaw the challenge, the hate, the slaughter, but let it happen to prove that He is all that He is – fair to all, righteous to all, just to all, loving to all, behaves perfectly to all, exercises profound judgment, exhibits a fair and equitable wrath when needed. He is slow to anger, 2 Peter 3:6-14 – which display what about God?

You see, the devil knew this about God, knowing that God would not kill him, not deny the very life granted to him, not zapping him into a state of non-existence. To do so would cause God to deny the life granted. That was indeed a big chance the serpent took. God could certainly zap into a state of non-existence but God, being God, chose not too, which again proves what about God?

Instead, God remains control, thwarting the devil at every turn. Justly proving who and what sin is, what rebellion is, and in the end – not zapping the devil and his followers into a state of non-existence but rather into a lake of fire, forever. He is incredibly more sovereign than we ever realized! Wiser, more just, more righteous, more even handed, than the human mind can even conceive!

God will not deny life to those he made intelligent with the ability to reason of their own accord; attempting to be supreme, tempt God to deny himself by how they live, slaughtering others hopes, dreams, ways, and means. The bible says, in Deuteronomy 5:11 “Thou shalt not take the name [character] of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain.” KJV/JSP

How can God justly hold anyone guilty who takes, misuses, His Name if God made, predestine, some to take His name in vain. You see – if so, as many argue that God does capriciously predestine/elect some for hell – God would end up denying Himself, His word, His own law, and He himself would be guilty of taking His own name in vain! [Note: Name represents one's character]. God cannot deny Himself. What would God do?

God designed the independent mind. This absolves God of being unjust, unrighteous, unloving, and unfair and definitely not the creator of sin. Sin remains the creatures own. However, God still made the creature and thus justly has the last word regarding their fate. God demonstrates responsibility.

God will give with great justice what they deserve – fire and wrath everlasting – justly, fairly, even handedly, righteously so those who freely returned back to God can see and never repeat rebellion again, Revelations 22:11-17 – these verses reveal what about God – his nature and character?

God is not afraid of foreseen outcomes – proving He is in Charge. God cannot deny himself. [A Mystery: Job 42:13]

Genesis 1:26, God made man in his image and likeness, reflecting God’s nature and character on earth. Let us not lose our salt nor let our lamps shining in a dark world go out, Romans 8:1-39. You do have a purpose.

God foresaw the fall in the Garden of Eden proving what about God? More on this, next time…

Truly; God, all his ways are perfect, converting the soul. What can remain perfect if the imperfections are not removed first? Psalm 18:30-31, Psalm 19:7-14, Psalm 12:6-7.

Wednesday, 21 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...


God decreed, “And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.' and God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. God blessed them; and God said unto them: 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Gen 1:26-28 JPS/KJV

God created man in His image – a reflection of God’s divine nature and character. Within this reflection, we have the attributes of wisdom, intelligence, reason, the ability to think on our own, to create, and be creative. We are by no-means carbon copies of God. We cannot create out of nothing. We are not God or Gods but his creatures, created for the purpose of God’s good pleasure. We instead reflect a lower portrait of God’s nature and character assigned to govern the affairs of life on earth; tending and keeping life maintained in a wise, evenhanded, intelligent way.

God granted us dominion over the earth and its animal/plants inhabitants and to replenish the earth and sub-due it. God made humans with intelligence to be able to perform this task. This proves what about God? He is fair, righteous, just, and truly loves. Even though humanity has the ability to turn against God, God still permits this reasoning intelligence to exist. He is truly God and cannot deny himself. He proves who He is.

God is steering all things to a final goal as stated in Revelations 21. In this steering, he is proving himself all that he is. If you ponder this more, you’ll soon grasp that this process was the wisest course of action to take. Allowing special created beings to be able to reason and think on their own still proves that God is more Sovereign, more all powerful, more righteous, holy, pure, just, merciful, wise, more all knowing, than we can conceive. You will fall in love with God more and more while you contemplate and ponder his greatness!

Who else but God would permit independent thought? Even when being able to foresee the consequences of this independence corrupting some of these beings, God still created for his good pleasure!

You see, as I stated before, God proves himself; all that he is, in the design. He designed humanity to think and reason independently. This independence, he tests. In the Garden of Eden he tested man and woman and proved himself God.

To be Continued…

Friday, 23 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

June 26, 2006

Also, I offer this insight on this blog freely and can use it as you will, all I ask if you use it please acknowledge me in your quotes: B. W. Melvin, Bryan W. Melvin – Author of book: A Land Unknown: Hell’s Dominion. This way, I take responsibility for what is written and not you as James 3:1 states.

The Main Point of it all

“And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.' and God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. God blessed them; and God said unto them: 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Gen 1:26-28 JPS/KJV

Dominion is a strange word. God gave humanity dominion over the earth. This key word is so neglected in the predestination verses free will debate that it isn’t surprising we remain locked in a theological struggle over the dominion of competing religious ideas; free will verses predestination, once saved always save verses falling away, God’s omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, verses human will and the existence of evil.

Why God granted mankind dominion, as well as what dominion really involves, answers this debate without question. However, we remain in the dark, clouded with human-centric notions about dominion that we all fail to note the importance of it as it pertains to God and how he designed human beings. We cannot help this; after all, we live after the fall of mankind subjugated in a struggle of wills.

In order to be granted dominion involves the ability to rule, exercise authority, to have a say so in how things are to get and be done. To be granted dominion involves a measure of independent reason in order to use it properly. Therefore, here in Genesis, it tells us how we humans were made, and granted a gift from God to have dominion. This displays what about God’s nature and character – his own moral law? Is it any wonder the bible boldly proclaims, ‘God test the heart?’

As stated and repeated often, in prior discourses, ‘God test the hearts.’ God test those he entrusts with certain domains that require degrees of dominion. To do this, requires granting a design that allows latitudes in ones reasoning ability. God let Adam name the animals Genesis 2:19-20 as well as gave Adam the authority to tend and keep the Garden, Genesis 2:14. God even gave man his own image too which is to reflect what?

This proves God is true to himself by granting liberty of thought. God foreknows everything and can guide liberty minded creatures like ourselves as he wills based on his foreknowing. This displays God’s all powerful nature, his righteous, holy, pure, just, merciful, wise, loving nature and character which in turn is in reality, his moral law which is the means of how God exercises his sovereign dominion over all creation.

Origin Of Evil – a Brief review:

Ezekiel 28:12-13, it states God granted a degree of dominion to a certain covering Cherub, Ezekiel 28:14-19, who became filled with violence due to this dominion it was entrusted with. This creature saw how to twist and bend God’s moral laws in order to get away with rebellion against God.

Again in Isaiah 14:12-19, we see that God tested this beings heart. What was the nature of the test? Answer, dominion – “For you said in your heart, I will ascend into heaven; I will exalt my throne above the stars of God” Isaiah 14:13 NKJV.

Why? Why did God permit this, foreseeing all the terrible woe and cost that would come when an eternal being would go astray by misusing, misrepresenting, and misguiding God’s moral nature and character i.e. God’s moral laws? Answer: God test what he makes.

To deny the choices involved with granting dominion to those God creates would cause God to break his own moral law, deny his true nature and character even when God foresaw it all happening. To stop it would mean violating the precept, ‘Thou shall not commit murder’ which is in essence is extinguishing life into a state of non-existence. God gave a gift of life that he will not extinguish it into non-existence, though he could but his moral law, his nature and character would have to be denied to do so.

This is not a position of weakness as some may like to argue. It is a position of strength as God is all knowing, and all powerful. He sees the beginning to the end and remains in control steering life towards it true and final goal: the new heavens and earth revealing all that he is to all and proving himself true to himself, Job 34:12-36.

God has a plan, a course, to restore the order of all creation at a future time. Within this frame of time, God will prove who he is and establish his dominion in the most extreme fair, even handed, just, righteous, loving, merciful, manner all in accordance to his nature and character – his own personal moral law which will with such longsuffering lead to God displaying his wrath in an extremely fair, even handed, just, righteous, manner at an appointed hour, 2 Peter 3:8-18.

The question is – can God trust one to exercise dominion and not overstep their boundaries? God foreknew those who will and those that will not and assigned them a place in the scheme of time according to where they fit best. Some were made angels and others, humanity. In this, and through this, God will prove himself true to himself and all that he is.

Back to Genesis and Mankind:

Dominion, how we seek dominion! In business we seek to dominate the competition. At home, there are those that dominate family and friends. In the religious world, there are those that seek to dominate. Politics seek dominion. How do we rule? How do we bend the rules for our own gain?

Genesis 1:26, “And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion…” KJV

What is the nature of this dominion that God granted humanity to have? It was to be a reflection of God’s nature, character on earth. It was intended for mankind to govern in a fair, even handed, just, righteous, loving, merciful, manner as God does all creation and reflect that on earth, to our family, home, community, nation, life itself.

Do you think the bible says in vain for Christians to be Christ like, be imitators of God? 1 Corinthians 11:1, Ephesians 5:1-17, 1 John 2:6, 1 John 4:4, Galatians 4:19-21, John 17:20-26. God is restoring the real meaning and purpose of dominion back into our lives.

Romans 3:23, “for all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God, NKJV” the bible shouts! What is the Glory of God? How else can you express the majesty of God’s glorious nature and character?

The Glory of God is revealed by how he governs within all fairness, righteousness, circumspect Justice, mercy, according too true truth, displays of grace, not lying, not taking back what he promises and gives, permitting liberty of thought and reason, holding accountable with equity, healing, restoring in the most fair way, not acting unjustly, being humble, patient, kind, longsuffering, teaching and instructing with wisdom, tact and the list goes on.

We no longer exercise this style of dominion or reflect it [God's Image]; instead we seek to define our own dominion and rule with iron over clay. Mankind fell and lost the image of God we were designed to reflect: shining forth God’s nature and character where we live. The Glory of God profound!

Such a gift this was that a test was conceived by God in order to test dominion granted humanity. God test the heart based on what was foreknown. God saw that Humanity would fail this test and in doing so, God will prove himself supreme! 1 Peter 1:10-13.

Genesis 2:9, “and God planted a tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” NKJV

To bad we fail to see that it was the very dominion granted to Adam God was testing through the use of the knowledge of good and evil. How will man use his gift of dominion? Will he seek to take it for what he deems as a good and noble course? Or use it as a tyrant for evil? Either way is wrong.

Will man use the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to be fruitful? Multiply? Replenish? Employed in the means to subjugate, subdue, force, keep under, bring into bondage, to dominate? Will man use this knowledge to manipulate the moral laws of God, his nature and character, to rule as they see best?

What direction will this dominion sway? God’s way as designed? Or man’s way? God test the heart. Romans 3:23, “for all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God,” NKJV.

Foreknowing the fall of mankind would happen; would abandoning humanity or even destroying humanity have been the wisest and best course of action God could have taken? And for that matter, destroying the devil into non-existence in the process too? Would not this course prove God not all powerful and thus misuse his own manner dominions governorship?

God has a plan. We are part of it. Deny it if you like. The Glory of God will prevail as we shall soon see!

Monday, 26 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

June 26, 2006

Dominion Continued:

Genesis 1:26, “And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over…”

Dominion? What is it? How is it defined? The Hebrew word translated here denotes the ability to rule, to have authority, dominate, tread down, subjugate, a have a say-so in the governance of life on earth. God assigned humanity, as it were, to be God's representative, God’s viceroy, upon earth.

Man and woman were fashioned to rule as God does: thus, to be a reflection, an image of God’s nature and character on earth. Governing according to how God governs with fairness, righteousness, circumspect justice, mercy, reflect true truth, display grace, not lying, not taking back promises or gifts, permitting liberty of thought and reason, holding accountable with equity, healing, restoring in the most fair way, not acting unjustly, being humble, patient, kind, longsuffering, teaching and instructing with wisdom, tact, etc and etc.

God even granted humanity the ability to multiply, bear young. Why? To give a taste of what it is like to rule over a free-minded, independent willed, person. Think about it for awhile!

Before the fall, dominion did not mean to be coercive, tyrannical, motivated by self-willed selfishness, acting with malice to implement control, to control for mere pleasure of control, to dominate in order to promote self regulated agendas and ideas. Instead, it meant the opposite of these. Dominion was to reflect God’s nature and character on earth – an image of God’s moral laws governing the affairs of life on this planet bound to equity and proved by love.

My oh My - How Far have We Fallen:

Genesis 2:9 “And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” KJV/JPS

God planted a tree in the Garden of Eden. He foresaw its need to test the gift of dominion granted Adam and Eve. He Foresees, the ultimate goal of a new heaven and earth where righteousness reigns, and sin and death have ended. Within a stretch of time, God will reveal himself, his character and nature, and prove himself true to himself in all the he will do to reach that state predestined.

Humanity will need to learn how to have dominion and exercise it correctly as God does and was thus entrusted with this gift of implementing dominion to learn what true liberty really consist of. Man was made in his own image that reflects God’s glorious image in what we will later be entrusted with, Romans 8:19-25.

Rom 8:19-22, “For the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God; For the creation was not willingly subjected to vanity, but because of Him who subjected it on hope that the creation itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. And we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now.” MKJV

Continued on Next Post...

Tuesday, 27 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

June 26, 2006

The Fall:

Genesis 3:1-7 records how humanity first parents exchanged the truth about God for a lie and fell away from God into sin. If you will look closely at these verses, you will see it was a test involving dominion.

Gen 3:1, “Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman: 'Yea, hath God said: Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden?” JPS

In essence, the serpent was more cleverly subtle knowing God will not deny Himself. The serpent understood the concepts of God’s fairness, justice, righteousness, God’s unfailing ability to keep his word and not take back any gift He gives.

Yes the devil knew full well that God will-not extinguish life into a state of non-existence because it was a gift. This fallen covering Cherub began the temptation to misuse God’s own moral nature and character to get away with seeking ultimate dominion. He is subtle isn’t he? Going about questioning God’s authority? Job 1:10, 1 Peter 5:8-11.

Through this act, the rebel is caught and convicted in the most fair-handed manner and righteously just way, that there can no longer be doubt that he would constantly corrupt life, if allowed to remain. Instead, he will be used by God to achieve God’s goals for a period of time, proving who is really in control. And a place will be made for the devil and his cohorts, Matthew 25:41, 2 Peter 2:4.

Gen 3:2-3, “And the woman said unto the serpent: 'Of the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said: Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.” JPS

Clever tactic, reminding them of God’s own words sent to govern fairly which allows independent thought and reason. Adding to God’s word they found the lie alluring. Keep in mind, Adam was only an arms length away from Eve while this happened. She handed him the fruit. He was taken in by the serpent’s lie, after all, God said that Adam had authority over all creatures on earth. What did he have to lose to ‘just’ listen?

Gen 3:4, “And the serpent said unto the woman: 'Ye shall not surely die; for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil.” JPS

Dominion challenged. They could both see the serpent was not dead and both also knew that God would not extinguish their own lives into non-existence either. They walked with God and knew their creator’s nature and character well: God spoke and communed with Adam and Eve, Gen 1:29-30, Gen 2:18-19, or have you forgotten this part?

Gen 3:6-7, “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig-leaves together, and made themselves coverings.” JPS

Oh, to be like God! After all, were they not God’s viceroys on earth? - To govern as God does? Why not take the fruit? God gave them dominion over the earth. They could see how good it will be for food, how delightful for the eyes to see, and how one can be so wise exercising dominion – their own dominion in their own image and likeness: Has not God said?

Now we can implement the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to be fruitful! What will make you fruitful? New clothes? Cars? TV’s? Riches? Power? Control? Etc. What things do we do to remain fruitful and be fruitful at whom and what’s expense?

We can implement the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to multiply: have sex with whomever, whenever and whatever desired is a modern argument used today that reflects humanities dominion to multiply.

What about increasing appetites for base things and perversions? Or the mass means to increase wealth and power unjustly for wrongful uses? Neglect the truly downtrodden, poor, and infirm and justify our neglect as righteous so we can multiply?

Now we can implement the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to replenish the earth! How about you? How do you go about replenishing yourself? Drugs? Booze? Lust? Slander? Gossip? Own the best toys? Money? Popularity? Renown? Note: Matthew 6:24.

Also, what do we do with the gift of this planet entrusted to us both the bad and the good? We declare – we do not need to reflect God here anymore, but our own image and likeness. What a mess, exploitation and its unseen but oft felt cost. Evolutions slap on the face of God! Multiplied intelligence at work to verify a dream or foolishness extreme?

Now we can implement the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to subdue, subjugate, force, keep under, bring into bondage, to dominate according to humanities own ideas and wisdom.

Now humanity can implement the knowledge of good and evil to exercise dominion over the ways and means to tend and keep our own affairs of life! See some results: Broken homes, shattered dreams, unkind words we speak that hurt, how we despise all authority except our own, live self willed no matter the cost, carousing, living hypocrisy, justifying guile and cunning to get what you desire at your loved ones expense and anyone’s else’s too.

Yes, Adam and Eve both saw that this fruit would make them so wise that they can now manipulate the moral laws of God, his nature and character, to rule as they see best. Oh my, how we all sin and make life so ugly exploiting God’s love and grace, Romans 6:1-2! Adam and Eve both ate and saw they were naked, without God and hope in the world. Do You?

Can you see how far we all have fallen from the Glory of God?

Dominion, Humanity likes to exercise it! Oh! How much dominion we can have by relying on written laws! So much so, that I am afraid we would even bend God’s own written laws to fit human-centric notions of dominion concerning what it means to please God. No wonder the Law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, Galatians 3:24.

Isn’t that what precisely happened in the Old Testament? Note: Zechariah 7:8-12. Jesus in righteous anger drove the unrighteous out of the temple declaring his message – repent! Return back to God! John 2:14-25, Mark 1:15. That is why the Old Testament Laws could not save nor atone for sin, as we would twist them to justify our own acts of dominion. Isn’t this the nature of all religions devised by man?

We manipulate God’s written law so much to prove we have dominion over life on earth and not God, thus, we neglect true dominion which is summed up in Micah 6:8, “It hath been told thee, O man, what is good, and what the LORD doth require of thee: only to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God.” JPS/KJV

Those that are of the truth will hear the truth about God! Those that will not remain firmly seeking dominion to dominate all things, even God himself.

Is it all Hopeless?

As I stated before, God cannot deny himself. This is a great strength and not weakness. God foresaw the need to redeem humanity in an extremely just and fair manner that honors whom he created as well as how they were designed as independent minded beings. This independence will be challenged and provoked to return to God freely or permitted to reject God and thus continue to live in ones-own image of dominion. How fair is fair?

God is a just God. What is justice without consequences? God displays these consequences to us. Some will return to God and others will not. Do those that return to God do so because God foresaw who will? Or did he blindly select those that will return to him out from the mass sea of humanity born and yet to be born?

Knowing something of God’s nature and character answers this: Blindly selecting is not just and makes God the author of sin. God cannot sin. To himself he remains true and gave the responsibility to humanity to respond to what God himself foresaw was needed to prove himself, loving, kind, just, fair, righteous, etc, to none other than Himself. Thank God He did so! Glory to God forevermore!

Sin is the creatures own making. The moral law of God reveals who God is and what He is like. Sin seeks to take dominion away from God’s moral law and replaces this with its own dominion. How? By taking advantage of God’s love, kindness, justice, fairness, righteousness, etc, to remain unchanged and unchecked in ones reach for dominion.

God foresaw the need to call out to lost humanity so they can return. For those he foreknew would hear, he predestined, those he predestined he called so they could hear. In this God proves himself God. He knows all things before they ever be and shapes us according to what he foreknows about us.

The Call... To be continued...Final Thoughts and conclusions

Tuesday, 27 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

June 30, 2006

The Call-Intro

Our Dominion: A Hard Heart

When I speak of dominion, I am speaking of how we exercise our ability to rule, exercise authority in our lives, what we dominate, tread down, and subjugate. We base this on our own knowledge of what will be good or bad to us personally. Some may even rightfully interpret this dominion I speak of as self-will or even as a hard heart.

For example, there are people that obliviously seek to control and toss their self-willed authority around. There are even others that seek to govern their privet worlds by having self willed pity parties, petty sadness, paltry tantrums, as well as by many various self willed subtle manipulative means to maintain some form control over their lives.

Some rule with diverse forms of negativity to maintain control over peers and family. Ruled by fear can go either way: one can intimidate with violence, threats, personality or let the fear of living, making mistakes, fear of being hurt again be the dominion all must be subjugated too. The list goes on. The heart is truly hubris and desperately twisted. All human hearts have become hard through sin. There are none righteous but God. All have sinned.

The human heart needs to be engaged and changed. Some hearts, according to God’s nature of justice and fairness will remain hard no matter what. Others will change only after God engages it through His call. He foreknows all things knowing who will remain hard and who will not before time began. He tests the heart fairly, righteously, mercifully above what our humanness would ever allow. His ways are way above our own.

God test the heart to see what we will do with this free gift of dominion. God does not make someone a child molester or a serial killer. God does not make one evil, so he can toss them into hell. People make themselves so by how they use their dominance. God foresees everything, leaving the sin to be the creatures own, not his doing. He has responsibility to confine this dominance so that it does not replicate its hardness eternally.

Zechariah 7:11-12 states that people harden their own hearts into the type of dominance they wish to implement. They refused to hear God’s call to return, to return to him and his Glory and in exchange are turned over to the dominion they want to live by as Romans 1:16-32 reveals. God foresees that a hard heart will remain hard no matter what, and God can thus make it harder than it ever was if he so wills for his own plans.

Fair is fair, just is just, righteous is righteous, love is love, and God is God. He calls out to everyone because of who he is, proving he is the Lord God of all creation. He has the final word on where one will spend eternity. Evil only gives the illusion of triumph through many terrifying acts but in the light of the eternal, it will lose. God is in charge, governing according to his nature and character, revealing his living dominance supreme.

Remember God can make hard clay harder or softer in accordance to his nature, character, and moral laws that govern the universe. When God chooses to make the hard clay, harder, then there is a just and fair method involved in doing so which absolves God of being the author of sin and still maintain control of free minded beings, justly. When studying Pharaoh’s hard heart, it is good to remember this and avoid a subtle human dominance.

What about Pharaoh then – did not God harden him?

Friday, 30 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

July 1, 2006

What about Pharaoh then – did not God harden him?

What about Pharaoh then – did not God harden him is a question posed by many. If you only focus on a single scripture theme, that is only what you will see. Focus on God’s anger, wrath, and that is all you’ll know. Only focus on God hardening Pharaohs heart, you’ll miss how and why God hardens a heart, Romans 9:13-23.

Remember that through the very fall of humanity in the Garden of Eden all hearts are hard. This concept is important to recall regarding Pharaoh’s heart. All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God, or have you forgotten this? Pharaoh’s heart was hard before God said he harden it in the Exodus account. God made cement into granite: More on this later.

Romans Chapter Nine cannot stand on its own. It must match all other scriptures on the same themes it proposes. Only by examining all scriptures of the same theme can you be sure of what it is really saying. It must hold with all scriptures that tell that people harden their own hearts without coercion, and in doing so, you will discover how and why God can harden hearts too.

If you do not do this as well as note the actual content of Romans Chapter Nine, you can spin-off into great error. Not understanding that through Abraham all nations will be blest, you will not comprehend God’s plan of salvation that came through the children of Israel that God predestined before time began; and instead come to an unfocused perception of who God really is and how he truly acts.

Many stagnate when it comes to God hardening Pharaoh’s heart and go no further exploring God’s foreknowing, predestination, and call. They remain camped by the same mountain declaring, “God made sinners sin! Look at Pharaoh, God made his heart hard! He made the wicked-wicked so he can torment them in hell! Don’t complain! How dare you complain – the pot has no right to complain to the master potter - you made me thus! Rejoice and be glad in this! Has not God said? I got chapter and verse!”

This line of thinking does not line up with God’s nature and character which reveals His moral law: “Don't blame God when you are tempted! God cannot be tempted by evil, and he doesn't use evil to tempt others. We are tempted by our own desires that drag us off and trap us. Our desires make us sin, and when sin is finished with us, it leaves us dead. Don't be fooled, my dear friends. Every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father who created all the lights in the heavens. He is always the same and never makes dark shadows by changing.” James 1:13-17, CEV.

Romans 9:10-33 is describing something different than what many propose. Without God’s call, Jacob would not have become Israel and Jesus never made manifest to humanity. Through Abraham all nations will be blest.

Romans 9:11 “...for [Rebecca’s] children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of the One calling…” LITV

How often is this verse misused? You need to ask God, how does he elect – call out? When does God elect? Answer is before any of us were ever born or have done anything bad or good. God just knows who are his because He foresaw the need to call out his mercy to prove he is merciful to ‘all’ so some of the ‘all’ will not be lost.

It is that simple. He is the one calling. He knows who will hear mercy and who will reject mercy and can shape us as he wills, based on foreknowing. This is just, right, and fair…not of works but of the One calling.

Yes, God will show mercy on whom he wills and whom he wills he will harden. How does God show mercy? He calls, seeking that which is lost. Whom he foreknows, he predestines to be shaped into the image of His Son, whom he predestinates, He calls: that is the message in Romans 8:28-30. God will never let go those that hear and understand.

God calls and displays his mercy to whoever he foresaw, foreknew would hear. He calls according to his purpose. Hearing is not a work, it is hearing. Hearing enables one to return back to God’s will.

What is God’s purpose - his will? To shape those that-hear back into the image of His Son, Jesus Christ. What is the image we lost in the Garden? - Reflecting God’s nature and character to what was entrusted to us. What’s the message of the New Testament?

God foreknows who will hear this call of mercy and who will reject it just as 1 Peter 1:2 points out. God will have mercy on whomever he will have mercy because it is his call that proves mercy is possible. God knows all things, always. He is God, proving himself God. God most merciful and kind, exercising true justice and judgment!

How shall I say it so it is clear to you? God ask one question, “Do you hear my mercy?” to all humanity. He knows our answer before we were ever born. “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.” Proverbs 16:33, [JPS] tells us.

The words translated ‘whole disposing thereof’ means the entire process of deciding a case, rightly, fairly, judiciously. An example of this is to cast your prayers, request, plans up to the Lord and he will rightly, fairly, judiciously, decide what is best for a person. Or you can even say that the Lord can also toss something in one’s lap to test a person’s heart.

In other words you can say for the example I am illustrating, that God cast a question, a lot, into our lap that begins the entire process deciding a case, rightly, fairly, and judiciously. Only God can do this.

More on this Subject soon…

Saturday, 01 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

July 1, 2006

Mercy Displayed:

God did not design one person to hear and another not to hear his call. He does not say, “You there will hear and go to heaven and you over there will not so I can damn you to hell.” God decided to ask a question so as not to leave ‘all’ lost. This says what about God? You can reject God’s mercy or accept it. Sin remains the creatures own. How fair can God be? Yet, people still complain – why you made me thus?

How God shows mercy is neglected by many. Instead of looking at the entire bible to explain how God shows mercy, some just see a single ray of light and seek dominion with the light they see as the only way; thus, the faith of many can become shipwrecked. Am I wrecking your faith or increasing your faith to repent and return to the wonderful Lord God of all? A tree is known by its fruit

Jeremiah 18:3-10 explains in detail how God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy, and will have compassion on whom He will have compassion. By responding to his voice and if they do not, he will harden what is already hard. God does not destroy the gift of reason. He will cement ones destiny according to how a person responds to his voice, that call of mercy from God’s own heart. It is that simple. Have faith in God my friend. His yoke is easy and his burden light.

Ezekiel 18:23-31, “Do you think I enjoy seeing evil people die?" asks the Sovereign LORD. "No, I would rather see them repent and live.” GNB

Question: How can anyone honestly repent if never offered this choice by God? If God blissfully, or consciously, damns souls, or even picks to bless, why offer repentance at all? Or for that matter, offer a new heart and mind?

This is not to say that God cannot select or pick but rather point out that there is a judicious process involved with God’s electing, selecting out from humanity. I am exploring the process. Others only see the result and not the process. Romans chapter Nine reveals the results and alludes to the process. Other parts of the bible reveal the process.

Ezekiel 18:23-31, “But if a righteous person stops doing good and starts doing all the evil, disgusting things that evil people do, will he go on living? No! None of the good he did will be remembered. He will die because of his unfaithfulness and his sins.

"But you say, 'What the Lord does isn't right.' Listen to me, you people. Do you think my way of doing things isn't right? It is your way that isn't right. When a righteous person stops doing good and starts doing evil and then dies, he dies because of the evil he has done.

“When someone evil stops sinning and does what is right and good, he saves his life. He realizes what he is doing and stops sinning, so he will certainly not die, but go on living. And you people say, 'What the Lord does isn't right.' You think my way isn't right, do you? It is your way that isn't right.

"Now I, the Sovereign LORD, am telling you people that I will judge each of you by what you have done. Turn away from all the evil you are doing, and don't let your sin destroy you. Give up all the evil you have been doing, and get yourselves new minds and hearts. Why do you people want to die?” GNB

Sum of the Matter:

What is sin? - Violation and transgressing God’s moral Law. His moral law displays God’s nature and character governing the universe. Transgressing this law, is misusing it to attain ones own dominion, rule, authority, no matter the mask self-will wears. God, because of who he is, calls out to everyone, repent!

Acts 17:30, “In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent” NIV

God calls all, not a few but all. It is out of the ‘all’ God searches the hearts of ‘all’ and seeks them that are lost. God foreknows beforehand who will repent because he simply foresaw who truly hears his call. This again proves God is all that He is, Fair, Just, Merciful, etc.

God calls ‘all’ because ‘all’ need to be called. Think on it for awhile: God indeed appoints those that believe from amongst the ‘all.’ Those that truly hear can be molded into the image of God’s dear son, Jesus Christ. Without God’s call, none could be molded back to God’s true purposes.

In Acts13:48 it states that God appoints as many to eternal life based on what? Have you taken the time to search this out or instead take the easy path and declare, “don’t ask questions, shut-up, you are damned if you are and you ain’t if you ain’t!”

How many have been turned away from seeking Christ with such dominating attitudes? Seeking to defend God’s honor, people instead twist it into something it is not.

Scripture defines scripture, a little here and a little there, line upon line and precept upon precept. Why, so we’ll fall backwards, be caught, and snared so that we will repent of the error of our ways. Isaiah 28:9-13.

Both Acts 2:47 and Romans 10:8-17 reveals something on this matter that explains how God appoints. Let us look at these verses:

Acts 2:47, “And every day the Lord added to their group those who were being saved.” GNB

Rom 10:13-16, “For everyone, "whoever may call on the name of the Lord will be saved. [Joel 2:32] How then may they call on One into whom they have not believed? And how may they believe One of whom they have not heard? And how may they hear without preaching? And how may they preach if they are not sent? It has been written, "How beautiful" "the feet of those preaching the gospel of peace, of those preaching the gospel of good things [Isaiah. 52:7] But not all obeyed the gospel, for Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our report?" Isaiah 53:1 LITV

Rom 10:17, “Then faith is of hearing, and hearing through the Word of God.” LITV

God foresees, foreknows, who will repent and who will not because He is God. To be perfectly just and right, God calls out proving his mercy. Without his voice, his word, his logos, none could ever be granted salvation’s new heart and renewed mind.

God has mercy on whom he will have mercy and others that reject God, reject from their own harden volition, that residue if you will - left over from the fall. God will reject and turn them over to a debased mind. Cemented to live in the dominion they desire and all its shameful consequences. This proves what about God? He hardens what is already foreknown to be hard.

Back to Pharaoh…To be continued

Saturday, 01 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Back to Pharaoh

Pharaoh hardened his own heart because it was already hard. Harden through sin, through the very fall of humanity in the Garden of Eden. It was hard to begin with. All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God, or have you forgotten this?

God foresaw Pharaoh would harden is already hard heart as Exodus 8:32 reveals. Thus, God could harden this ruler’s heart even more rock solid because God foreknew old Pharaoh would never respond to God’s mercy know matter if God physically appeared and tapped danced on Pharaoh’s forehead. Pharaoh would remain hard.

Thus, God has mercy and compassion on whom he wills and whom he wills he hardens. God hardens what is already hard: all have sinned – or have you forgotten this?

Never insert the definition of how humans define the word ‘Will’ used here or you will fail to see how God has mercy, compassion, and hardens. This Greek word in context with God’s ‘will,’ means too judiciously resolve, intend, desire, and purposes something. This lines up with God’s nature/character. Human ‘will’ does not.

Pharaoh was entrenched in his dominion, Exodus 5:2, 23. And the people God purposed to set free were also entrenched in Pharaohs dominion, Exodus 6:9. Something had to be done to break this impasse. God proves he is in control and has true ultimate dominion.

Why did God do this? Exodus 7:1-5 explains why. God proves he can and will use the wicked for a day of punishment. God remains in control according to the dictates of his nature and character, totally expressed in exercising his will. In this, God reveals his attributes of fairness.

How? God foreknew from the sea of humanity born and yet to be born that this one person would reject God’s mercy/compassion, and made him Pharaoh, Exodus 9:15-17. God had a plan and can use those he foreknows to reveal his power – that the Lord God is in sovereign control governed by all God is.

God was judiciously fair and just turning Pharaohs heart hard because it was hard to begin with, as evidenced by Pharaoh refusing to listen to God’s voice, as well as from the result of the fall of humanity in the Garden of Eden. God gave Pharaoh what he wanted even before he was ever born, cemented his lust for dominion in his heart so we can learn from the entire biblical example recorded in Exodus not to harden our hearts.

God foreknows all, he is just, fair, upright, does no wrong, his way are beyond our full comprehension. How dare we instruct God and say he damns to hell because he desires it according to his will! This line of thought violates God’s own sovereign nature, moral law, and character. If this were the case then God has violated what Exodus 20:1-17 reveals by causing, predestining people to break his own laws. This is not righteous, or just, nor a true reflection of all who God is.

The story of Pharaoh does not imply or indicate that God blissfully selects one to be damned and another to be blest. It implies a deep knowledge that foreknows all things by simply knowing way beforehand who will hear His call and who will reject it. In this God remains faithful in how he designed free thinking beings entrusted with exercising the gift of dominion he gave and tests; thus, God can and does hold us all judiciously accountable. What we sow is what we reap.

When a person rejects God’s call, his voice, his eternal logos, he will cement their desires rock hard. God foreknows they’ll never repent. From this they’ll remain, forever reminded that they do not have true dominion; eternally reminded that their moralistic dominion seeks only to supplant, and that it will never to acquiesce to God’s true dominion. God is beyond doubt fair! More fair than you and I will ever be!

In this God proves himself again, great in wisdom, all powerful, just, and pure in all that he does. God truly knows all and from this foreknowing can predestine. This displays what about God’s nature and character? Mighty is the Lord and greatly to be praised is He! Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

Please read Isaiah 45:4-13 again in context as it reveals God has true Dominion. God uses those that strive against their maker, uses those that manipulate, misuse, and twist God’s nature and character in order to get away with exercising their own dominance. Who refuse to hear! Who shout: “What are you making God? You have no hands to make me, I am that I am!”

God will have the last laugh with people like that. Be not one of them, repent and return back to God. God is calling… The lot is now cast into your lap.

More on:

Romans Nine:


Saturday, 08 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Romans Nine:

Acts 10:34-35, “Then Peter opened his mouth and said: In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” NKJV

Romans 2:11, “For there is no partiality with God.” NKJV

Deuteronomy 10:17-18, “For the Lord your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality nor takes a bribe…”NKJV

There you have it, God demonstrates his complete fairness. He shows no partiality. He does not select on merit. He calls demonstrating his mercy, not to some, not to just a select few, but all; for to do otherwise would cause God to deny himself just and fair. Praise God, he will not deny himself!

Romans 9:12-16 is teaching the same thing. It is a shame so many interpret this chapter in accord to human-centric notions of love and hate - mercy and hardness that they fail to see how God shows no partiality. He calls all but not all will hear.

What did God Love about Jacob? What did God hate about Esau? According to Romans 8:29 it is based on God’s superior foreknowing. He calls and demonstrates mercy in accordance to his will – which is a reflection of God’s nature, character; his moral laws being enacted which display all who God is.

Now, Paul in Romans 9:13 is quoting Malachi 1:1-3. Malachi writes about the descendants of Jacob and Esau. So does the context of Romans chapter nine. Paul retains context but later others did not interpreting this chapter. What was it that caused God to hate Esau and his descendants and love Jacob and his descendants since God shows no partiality? Yet, love and hate show partiality! Is God unrighteous? Certainly not!

Romans 8:29 clues us in how God shows no partiality, how God can both love and hate, and have compassion and harden: the answer is God foreknows. God foreknows that if He never displayed mercy, none could receive it. Since He calls, there is now a chance for whoever freely hears to receive God’s terms of mercy and from this, these that hear learn to work His righteousness.

Let’s review, people harden their own hearts, every heart is hard due to the nature of the fall of mankind in the Garden of Eden. Out of humanity, there are none righteous and all have sinned, except Jesus. People’s hearts are hard because of the Fall and from this harden their own hearts daily seeking personal forms of dominion. [The bible does teach this as I have shown from prior discourses]

From this, God foresaw the need to display his mercy, his calls, Romans 9:16. Since God calls, there is now made a chance for whoever hears God’s terms of mercy to freely accept or reject, proving God absolutely fair. God already knows the answers but to be true to himself still calls without partiality.

When the bible speaks of God hardening hearts, God is hardening what was already hard. In other words, he is sealing the heart, damning it eternally. This can occur during the great white throne judgment, or when judgment comes after death, and can also occur during ones mortal life based on God foreknowing all outcomes of his call. There is no unrighteousness from God in any of this.

Esau and his descendants symbolize those that reject God’s call. God despises and detest those that reject him. God can group people of like mind and will, from amongst the vast sea of born and unborn humanity, place them in specific geographic locations, and form nations of these for certain epochs in time.

Esau’s and Ishmael’s descendants are prime example of this found within the pages of the Bible. God used them to display his character and nature according to his will, plans, and purposes. Proving God has true dominion, not they. He used them to punish Israel when Israel strayed as well as displayed his judgments against their manner of conduct, rule of life, dominion they espoused.

God is right in placing people in these geographic groups as they are hell bent to exalt their own forms of self righteous dominion over God’s. They reject God’s mercy as God foresaw they would. To deny them part in existence would prove God not truly sovereign; therefore, God let’s them be born. Think on this a bit more on your own.

If you can see that God’s ‘Will’ – plans and purposes - are to display all that he is in accordance to His nature, character, and moral law then you’ll see how God has mercy on whom he wills and hardens as well as the manner in which he does.

God foresaw, that without a display of mercy, a call, none could respond. Now that God decided to call before anyone was ever born and done anything wrong, God can foresee the result of his call – who will hear and understand and who that will reject. That is how God has mercy and can harden. Not of works but of Him who calls. God foresees the results of his own call. His decisions are based on his own deep foreknowing, Romans 11:33-36.

God foreknows the results of every human being has towards his call. God will harden what is already hard at an appointed time. In other words, seals the hard heart harder as it will never accept God’s mercy no matter how loudly God’s fairness, justice, righteousness, mercy shouts. He makes the rain fall on the just and unjust without partiality.

He foresaw that Jacob and his true descendants would be people that would hear and understand his call, learn to obey from disobedience, and be willingly changed into a new person. He loved that about Jacob and made him born at such a time and place where he could be best used.

Jacob is an example of faith that saves one from remaining hard, transforming a person’s hard heart over time into new heart. From this new heart, one will obey God and reflect God’s nature and character where they were assigned. God loves those that love him. God shows no partiality.

God foresaw that Esau and his true descendants would refuse to listen to God’s call and hated, detested, that Esau would not listen or obey his call and chose to exercise personal dominion to establish their own brand of righteousness. God still blest Esau even though he despised him.

Esau is an example of faith in self-will that seals a person’s already hard heart to remain hard, set against God. From this hard heart, one will never obey God nor reflect God’s nature and character where they were assigned. Instead, they’ll reflect their own forms of dominion. God hates those that hate him. God shows no partiality.

Therefore, the conclusion of the matter: do not be like Esau, repent! There will come a time when God will seal ones heart, fate. The majority of the time this comes at the point of departing this life when you will be judged. The exceptions are those like Pharaoh and Esau who were hardened, sealed early. Do not be like Esau, repent! God is calling his mercy to you. Return to God before it is too late!

Remember, God designed humanity to respond to his call. He will not violate the gift of autonomy he gave you. To do so would make God deny himself. God is not a slave to your will either. He holds you accountable. Be not like Esau trying twist this fact about God’s nature and character with your tears, repent! And return to God! Harden not your heart as they did. Return to God’s call of mercy – Jesus Christ!

God’s Call: Mercy Divine

Continued - Next frame

Saturday, 08 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

God’s Call: Mercy Divine

When reading Romans chapter Nine, it is important to keep it context with Romans chapters 8 through 12. Paul’s quote of Malachi 1:1-3 also in context. In fact, Malachi chapters 1 through 4 help explain Romans chapters 8 through 12. A reading of both help clarify themes both speak of.

In Malachi 1:1-3, it states that God Hated Esau and loved Jacob. Please note, that when God hates something or someone there is a reason for this. It is not a blind selection, nor is it a reflection of human-centric notions of hate. It is a hate, despising, detestation that comes from foreknowing the end result of Esau and his descendents before the final outcome has been realized.

God despises, detest, hates those that misuse his name and character for their own dominating ends, Malachi 1:7-14, Malachi 2:1-6. Therefore, God hates, despises, those that impose their own dominance, self-will, in place of what was entrusted to them. Esau was one such person. Read his history found in Genesis for more details.

God hates those that are like Esau. God will exercise this hate in accordance to his character, and nature. This hate will show mercy, be just, demonstrate righteousness, exercise justice and judgment, it will be fair, and it takes a long time before it boils over into a stage of hot punishment.

God’s hate shows mercy for many reasons. 2 Peter 3:2-12, states one; God foreknows that some will repent like Jacob and return to God. Speaking of Jesus in Malachi 2:4-9 and Malachi 3:1-6, the Lord reveals his call of mercy that will be displayed later through Jesus on a hill called Golgotha.

Those that hear, understand, and repent are like Jacob, whom God loves. Those that refuse to understand, hear, and refuse to repent are like Esau, whom God hates. God’s mercy slows God’s hate from taking unjust vengeance so that people are given a fair, even handed, just, righteous, chance to repent and return to the Lord. Why? God foresaw that because he calls, shows mercy – it proves that God is all He is through demonstration of his glorious nature that he is God perfect in all his ways.

The example from Romans reveals the same thing – two kinds of people. One, like Jacob who will receive a new nature and thus be God’s own special people and the other like Esau sealed rock-hard in disapproval. The choice is still the creatures own even when God already knows the answer. He calls to all so all will be without excuse. God shows no partiality.

Look at Romans 9:11, Romans 9:15-16, Romans 9:18, Romans 9:22-26. These very verses back up what I am revealing. It is to our common shame that these verses have been misapplied so often throughout church history. Romans 9:16 sums it up nicely: “…but of God who shows mercy.” NKJV

This is revealed even within the pages of Genesis Chapter three: God’s call: Mercy Divine.

Genesis 3:8-9, “…Late in the afternoon a breeze began to blow, and the man and woman heard the LORD God walking in the garden. They were frightened and hid behind some trees. The LORD called out to the man and asked, "Where are you?"” CEV

How can anyone return to God, unless God let’s them know He is there, that God still exist? That he is God, one you can trust not to deny himself – A God of mercy, love, righteousness, justice, fairness, etc.

Adam and Eve heard the Lord walking, coming near, and hid. I wonder if they realized what they had done. They must of and hid, trying desperately to avoid the all seeing, all knowing, all powerful Lord God who hates sin, who said they’ll die if they did what they both did.

Again, the act of hiding in and of itself is a way to maintain one’s dominion over circumstances. Maybe if I hide long enough, God will just go away and leave me alone. This was not to be the case: “The LORD called out to the man and asked, "Where are you?” Gen 3:9 CEV

Have you ever pondered this: What would have happened if God refused to call out to Adam and Eve? God has that right. He definitely foresaw the fall, how sin hardens the heart; he should have hated and destroyed everything then and there. But would this have been really just for a perfect God to do? Destroy and remake in an unjust, unfair manner?

If God refused to call, we all would remain lost, damned, without hope and without God in this world. But God does indeed mercifully call, and still walks among humanity today. Will we stop hiding? Can you hear him calling?

You see, it is God’s call of mercy to us that predestines one. It is not an arbitrary selection but rather a foreknowing selection. God designed humanity’s to reason and think on-their-own. His call engages our reasoning intellect without any violation to how he made us. Truly in this, God proves He is fair. Even His questions to Adam reflect God’s calls of mercy.

God knows all, if you will hear and respond or reject his call way before we were ever born or have done anything bad or good. He calls to all humanity because He is God proving He is the great I AM. “So then, everything depends, not on what we humans want or do, but only on God's mercy.” Rom 9:16, GNB

Without God’s mercy to call out to us, none would or could ever be saved or even respond to his mercy. To Himself God remains true. God gave responsibility to humanity to respond to what God Himself foresaw was needed to prove Himself, loving, kind, just, fair, righteous, etc, to none other than Himself: His call – mercy divine!

From God’s call, God can fashion humanity according to his divine plan as he knows who will hear and who will reject because he is God that knows all. Oh, the fairness and righteousness of God displayed in the independence of reason and thought!

Do not let sin harden your heart anymore. God is calling! - Wrestling with you right now! Do not let God go. It is his good pleasure to give you his kingdom but first, the seat, the hip of your power, dominance, is being broken so that you will learn to lean on God’s staff, Jesus Christ and walk in newness of life.

Oh the anguish in your heart! The pain of your dominance wrecks havoc within your life! Its misery causes so much misery for you. Let it all go! Take hold of God! - The caretaker of your soul, Jesus Christ.

“Come let us reason together says the Lord…” Isaiah 1:16-20. NKJV

Conclusion soon to be posted.

Saturday, 08 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

“Come let us reason together says the Lord…” Isaiah 1:16-20. NKJV

Malachi 1:3-5, “But Esau I have hated, and laid waste his mountains and his heritage for the jackals of the wilderness.” Even though Edom has said, “We have been impoverished, But we will return and build the desolate places,” Thus says the LORD of hosts: “They may build, but I will throw down; they shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, and the people against whom the LORD will have indignation forever. Your eyes shall see, And you shall say, ‘The LORD is magnified beyond the border of Israel.” NKJV

When one reads this passage from Malachi and correlates it to Romans Chapter Nine it would be very wise to note that the ‘All Knowing God’ knows all things. God knows beforehand what independent minded beings will do and what they think before any being was ever created.

From this knowledge, God can conceive and plan from a vast reservoir of free minded beings so that He can prove who he is; that he is fair, just, merciful, righteous, caring, all powerful, etc. God knows that he must show mercy, call, out to this vast sea of beings to prove himself as he really is. From this, there will be those that reject and those that accept. Absolute fairness perfectly displayed.

From this, God foresees and knows who will reject his mercy, his call, misuse his own nature and character to justify getting away with sin [however temporary], and God knows who will accept his call, his mercy, and learn to reflect his Spirit, His nature, and character as God intended before any being came into existence. God does indeed test the heart.

Thus God can place them in groups in certain geographic locations of like minded souls so he can prove he is in control, not they. Malachi 1:3-5 actually points this out as does Romans chapter nine. Since God knows all things, he can harden hearts because individuals have already had harden their own hearts through sin.

Romans chapters 1 through 8 come before chapter nine. From these chapters we learn that it is men that suppress the truth in exchange for a lie. That people do not like to retain the knowledge of God and are turned over to a debased mind. Romans 2:5 reveal that we, the individual, harden our own impenitent hearts. These chapters go on to explain how this is so: that sin entered humanity through Adam’s transgression and that all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.

That is why, I keep pointing this out: we harden our own hearts. From this, God can justly, evenhandedly, harden hearts harder as he foresees and foreknows who will accept or reject his calls. God can soften hearts to hear too. It is his calling out to humanity based on foreknowing that predestines. God is not unjust nor is he arbitrary – He just knows.
This is brought out in Genesis regarding the historical history of the Jewish people. God selecting a group of people to reveal his nature and character displayed world wide so all nations, people, that do hear and understand will be blest.

Romans chapter 9 and 10 reflect this theme as does Malachi. It is God’s call of Mercy that elects, fairly, righteously, with perfect justice, that is tried and refined with profound love, proving that God is all that He is, forever unchanging! Oh the greatness of the Glory of God! Praise God all you saints!

Now with this in mind, what would have happened if God never called and just left mankind alone? There would have been no Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, or Joseph as we know them today. No display of God’s faithfulness, righteousness, love, or mercy. Justice would have lost all meaning.

We would all have been like Esau and Pharaoh and gone astray seeking our own personal dominion. God had to call because he is merciful! He proves himself through his call as he strolls amongst us today. God cannot deny himself! Praise be to God! This is revealed in Genesis chapter three.

Genesis 3:10, “So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” NKJV

Can you see from Adam’s answer that salvation is not based on God’s foreknowing how one decides to answer God’s call? We’ll just make excuses. We have tasted dominion. We like it too much to let that kind of control slip away. We’ll seek to blame another for our faults instead. We’ll twist the truth to get out of a jam rather than surrender our control.

Even when God gave his people written ordinances inscribed in stone, we, like they, end up twisting these in subjugation to our concepts of what makes right and wrong dominion; thus, establish our own human righteousness over God’s. Malachi also alludes to this by its many references that state “how have we defiled, profane, not honor God’s name, etc.”

The heart is twisted, turning even God’s own written words and revealed wisdom in order to establish human dominance without even knowing it! Job and his three comforters did so without realizing it as Job chapters 3 through Job 32:1-5 reveals until Job was confronted about his true sin.

Will we ever see God in the whirlwind of his nature and like Job cry out, “I have heard of You by the hearing ear, but now I my eye sees You. Therefore I abhor myself and repent in dust and ashes.” Job 42:5-6, NKJV. And can we, like Job, after seeing pray for our friends? Calvinist – Armenian – Catholic?

Proverbs 6:16-19 states that God hates a proud look. A proud look involves hubris of one’s soul to take dominion and be one’s own god – reflecting our nature and character as the measure of law, through scams, through sacrificing the innocent for personal gain, by devising cunning plans that end up justifying ones own style of living, lying to escape blame, and sowing discord amongst the brethren to gain some form of control.

Adam was naked, without God. God had to call to him again and again to cause him to see how naked he was. "How did you know you were naked?" God asked. "Did you eat any fruit from that tree in the middle of the garden?" Gen 3:11 CEV

Therefore it is not how we answer that God foreknows that saves but rather it is how we surrender to his call, repent, that God foresees because He called! Without his call, he cannot predestine fairly. Without his call, none could repent. Without God’s call, God would not be God and thus he would deny himself and all that he is.

His call is His work, not ours. Only a work of God can restore humanity and re-establishes faith fairly, justly, perfectly back into the heart of men and women. But remember, God test the heart. We must repent. God’s call engages and enables the ability to repent. God even test our repentance to see if it is true.

Our repentance is to surrender to His call. Faith, loyalty, fidelity is re-established between those that hear God’s call and God. Thus those that hear, the elect, learn by living process to reflect God’s true nature and character back on earth demonstrated by mirroring God’s nature and character where ever they are at in the here and now: shining this light first to family and friends, then in the work place and market, next in our own communities, and then to all.

Yes, the Lord God certainly knew Adam would fall and seek after his own dominance. The Lord of Host certainly could have destroyed humanity in one stroke but God cannot deny himself. He is merciful. God had a plan: Mercy Divine! Mercy enlists a response. What will yours be?

Acts 17:30, “In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him [Jesus Christ] from the dead." NIV

To be continued…

Repentance: what’s that?

Thursday, 13 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Repentance: what’s that?

Repentance what does it mean? How does one repent? The biblical theological definition of repentance means to change one’s mind for the better, change one’s direction, to turn around, to think differently to achieve repentance which leads to fulfillment of life by returning to God.

The Webster’s 1828 dictionary defines repentance this way: “In theology, to sorrow or be pained for sin, as a violation of God's holy law, a dishonor to his character and government, and the foulest ingratitude to a Being of infinite benevolence.”

God calls all to repent, change their ways, turn around, surrender one’s dominion, return back to God and his ways, learn to think and be different than the way we once were. Unfortunately, not all will repent.

How does one repent? The answer is simple, stop relying on your own efforts and surrender to God’s work that will save you to the uttermost. Jesus tells us how to repent in John 3:3, “Jesus answered and said to him, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” MKJV

You must be born of God’s Spirit. When God made Adam, he blew into him the breath of life. To be born again implies God’s Spirit being re-blown within you. God’s Spirit will enable you to effectively repent, change your life, and amend your ways. [John 16:7-15]

John 3:6-8, “Humans give life to their children. Yet only God's Spirit can change you into a child of God. Don't be surprised when I say that you must be born from above. Only God's Spirit gives new life. The Spirit is like the wind that blows wherever it wants to. You can hear the wind, but you don't know where it comes from or where it is going.” CEV

To repent means to surrender to God’s dominion and have that established within you. All our efforts at reforming our own ways fall short of God’s Glory and instead ascertain our own dominion. You cannot repent of your own accord. Self works to please God only shows that you are relying on yourself and not God, who gives freely his Spirit to those who call upon Him in faith.

John 3:15-17, “Then everyone who [believes] has faith in the Son of Man will have eternal life. God loved the people of this world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will have eternal life and never really die. God did not send his Son into the world to condemn its people. He sent him to save them! CEV

To repent is to believe in God’s work on the cross, that holy display and call of God’s mercy on a hill called Golgotha. To repent is to believe. The word ‘believe’ translated in verse fifteen is from the verbal form of the Greek noun ‘faith’. It denotes faith in living action.

Faith means to trust, rely, depend; to have total confidence in someone or something that produces love, fidelity and loyalty. To believe in Jesus Christ means to trust, rely, and depend on what he did to save and not on your own self. To actively believe means also that a person actively learns fidelity, love, and loyalty to Christ Jesus during their earthly sojourn.

They learn to surrender their personal dominion in exchange for God’s benevolent dominion ruling them and thus shine this where ever they have been assigned. They hear and understand the words of the kingdom and bear much fruit as Matthew 13:23 explains.

John 3:18-19, “No one who has faith in God's Son will be condemned. But everyone who doesn't have faith in him has already been condemned for not having faith in God's only Son. The light has come into the world, and people who do evil things are judged guilty because they love the dark more than the light. CEV

You see God calls out, “turn around come back to the light of life!” Repentance tests the heart. If you have faith in Jesus you will be changed and will have God’s Spirit to give you new life, eternal life. If one has faith in their own dominion they will be condemned because their faith, love, fidelity, and loyalty are in their own dark ways, their own dominion. God shows no partiality.

John 3:20-21, “People who do evil hate the light and won't come to the light, because it clearly shows what they have done. But everyone who lives by the truth will come to the light, because they want others to know that God is really the one doing what they do.” CEV

Be not one of them who cannot surrender their darkness. Instead live by God’s truth which displays God’s dominion ruled and governed by God’s infinite benevolence, nature and character.

Ephesians 2:8-10 also tells us how to repent plain and simple, “For by grace you are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them” MKJV

It is time to repent. It is hour to believe in one who gave his life in exchange for yours so that your can now return back to God. Now is the second for you to decide your fate. Can you not see and hear God’s call of mercy displayed on a hill called Golgotha?

Romans 10:9, “Because if you confess the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.” MKJV

Now is the moment… What will your answer be? Don’t neglect and put it off any loner!

Romans 10:13, “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” NKJV

Thursday, 13 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Conclusion: Truly, God Violates Free Will

Is God a slave to man’s free will? Bound never to violate humanities will so free? The answer would be NO. God is not bound never to violate free will. God is not a slave to free will. Instead, he is all powerful and can control free will minded beings by letting them be free to make their own decisions and choices. In this, God is absolved from creating sin, violating his very nature, and thus denying himself.

To retain absolute control involves being able to control all things, even the free minded, and still reach the final goal one desires. You and I cannot do this. Only God has such power. From this, God can control and shape based on foreknowing what a being will do with this ‘free mindedness’ given as a gift.

Therefore whom God foreknew, he predestines, whom he predestines – he calls. Without that call of mercy, none could ever be justified and glorified. It is God’s call that engages the free minded to repent and return to God. God violated humanities free will with his call. People love darkness more than light. However, there will be those that hear and understand, Matthew 13:19-23, Romans 10:9-17.

These, God calls out as his elect and those that refuse God have selected their own dominion over God. Herein is the test. Who amongst us will return to God on his terms? And who will not? It is that simple. God knows who will and who will not based solely on his decision to call out to all, so some of the all will be saved by his demonstrated mercy revealed on the hill Golgotha.

God’s terms are to believe on Christ Jesus, become Born Again, and learn to be transformed into the image that reflects God’s true nature and character during their earthly sojourn, here and now, wherever one has been assigned in the time allowed.

Some that have become born again have died moments after receiving God’s call of mercy. They have entered Heaven’s land. They did not have the opportunity to prove their faith on earth. Do not judge them as not saved. They believed and were taken to glory for God’s own purposes we cannot fully comprehend.

However long we have on this earth, do not lose heart but stand strong in the faith. You have a purpose and that is to reflect God’s nature and character first to yourself, then to your family, next to friends and neighbors, branching out later to your community, workplace, market, and then to even your own country.

It begins with you. What dominion do you desire to live by and shine? Some desire religious dominance over God the Father. Others desire their own dominion over the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. There are those that desire to supplant God the Holy Spirit’s dominion with their own ideas of right and wrong, good and evil.

God’s indwelling Holy Spirit teaches us how to truly shine God’s benevolent, just, loving, kind, righteous, even handedness, and even instructs us to correctly exercise true judgment in this dark world. God’s call challenges our free will and in his mercy he violates it, perfectly.

Without this violation we would all remain lost and damned. God’s call demands our response to either accept His mercy or reject it. In this, God will let you freely decide own your own who you will serve. Choose life.

His call makes this choice possible. Without it, we have none. God will not violate our ability to think and reason independently but he will violate our free will forcing this decision upon us fair and square. How? He calls; He shows mercy on that hill, Golgotha. What will your answer be to God’s mercy? From this…

Whom the Lord has mercy, he will have mercy and who the Lord judicially hardens he hardens, seals them forever. May God break all our hard hearts so we can find true meaning and purpose for our lives!

If you think God makes the wicked, then He would have caused the children of Israel to violate the Ten Commandments, and thus made all people everywhere sin against his own moral laws. If this then is the case - What does this say about God? What does this prove about God?

How can God truly be righteous and perfect in all His ways if he made people break his laws and turn them into rebels against himself? How can God be kind and show mercy and be fair in any of this? God would cease to be God if this was so as it is written:

Matthew 12:25, “And Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation. And every city or house divided against itself shall not stand.” MKJV

This line of thinking causes God to deny his own nature and proves God is not all powerful as he cannot fairly, rightly, justly, lovingly govern all things wisely. Instead, it makes God take on the nature of man as that is how mankind would act to prove dominance.

Fact is, if left alone, all humanity would be lost. God calls out in mercy. God’s wisdom in his design of humanity lets sin be the creatures own. God in his mercy calls – some will hear and some will not: God’s true fairness revealed, righteousness exposed, Justice proved, Love refined, Mercy established. No violation to God’s nature and character in any of this. God remains true to himself and not man.

God’s wisdom tests the heart because he calls. God’s all-knowing nature knows how one will answer His call before you or I was ever born. He can shape from His foreknowing all things. What’s wrong with that?

God calls out to everyone, everyday violating the free will of humanity, calling and providing the means to repent and change. What will be your response? God already knows but still ask: He is fair. Will you repent and learn to be changed by God’s Spirit or remain as you are, lost, without hope and God in this dark world?

When you learn to change - it will first affect you, next your family and friends. You have a purpose: Live shining the dominion of God’s nature and character where ever you have been assigned. Why don’t you start shining and stop whining?

God Bless you all!

I may add to this thread from time to time. Feel free now to post questions that I can answer if there is something not clear to you. Ask away... and Be blest!

If anyone ever tells you God will not violate man's free will, tell them about why Jesus came and you'll soon see God does violate free will, perfectly!

Thursday, 27 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Post One of - 7-31-06 – Part one of three

Some Final Thoughts

The potter and the clay, pictures of truth the bible portrays. Romans Chapter Nine, Isaiah 64:8, Jeremiah 18:1-10 use this illustration. Yet for many, the depiction perceived from these scriptures are just a lump of clay on a potter’s wheel being fashioned into good or bad clay vessels of usage for the potter. However, there is more to this picture than meets the eye as we shall soon see.

Viewing ourselves as lumps of clay on a spinning wheel misses the truth of Romans Chapter Nine. There is something else we fail to see. This blindness causes the message of Romans Chapter Nine to become a black and white picture of God’s justice and sovereignty which ends up disfiguring the name, nature, and character of God.

The way Romans Chapter Nine is seen is this: God hardened Pharaoh Heart and thus makes the wicked – wicked for punishment. While others are spared for no apparent reason other than to decorate God’s house with knickknacks for God’s pleasure. This line of thought does not line up with other scriptures, Ezekiel 18:23, Psalm 9:16, Jonah 3:9-10. This alone should tell us there is more here than first meets the eye.

Before we look at what is missing, let us first look at where such line of thinking ultimately leads before we continue: The point still stands – believing in Christ for salvation, period. How does one believe?

Let’s look at something. Is ‘believing’ having a complete full assurance a work of human will, any thing accomplished by hand, art, industry, or mind? Does believing consist of ‘running’ translated in Romans 9:11 which E-Sword defines as – Runneth - word occurs in Greek writings denoting to incur extreme peril, which it requires the exertion of all one’s effort to overcome?

Romans 9:11-etc, “for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of the One calling, it was said to her, "The greater shall serve the lesser;" Gen. 25:23 even as it has been written, "I loved Jacob, and I hated Esau." Mal. 1:2, 3. What then shall we say? Is there not unrighteousness with God? Let it not be! For He said to Moses, "I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will pity whomever I will pity." Ex. 33:19. So, then, it is not of the one willing, nor of the one running, but of the One showing mercy, of God. LITV

This passage has been used to build a case that cannot stand in the light of other scriptures. Let’s; look at this further.

According to text case here, which is out of context with rest of scripture, you could argue that any feeling you have, any work you do, regarding salvation is of mere human origin and cannot be trusted due to the desperately wicked heart of humans, Jeremiah 17:9

If then was the case, salvation is based solely of God’s selection, in which no one could ever be assured of. No feeling, no works, no deeds could assure us of salvation. If this was really the case, then the work Jesus did on the cross is of no effect as everything is based solely of God’s selection.

The best you can do to be assured of salvation is live however you want because in the end God selects. Good works are pointless. Feelings and knowing(s) in the mind cannot be trusted. There is no way anyone can be assured of salvation. Only by death and afterwards would you know if you were one of God’s elect! Thus, just hope that the hands of an ever kind providence have chosen you – live and let live.

If all is based on this type of selection, why did Jesus die on the cross? To save the elect only? How – when the elect cannot possibility know they were selected because the elect would be dependant upon their wills, mind, feelings of knowing assurance, deeds, works, and etc, which according to Romans Chapter Nine, one cannot trust!

Therefore, based on this type of logic about God’s election’s selection no one could ever be assured of salvation and the cross of Christ will have no purpose as there would be no logical reason Jesus had to come for Salvation as God just selects. Maybe God sent his son to just tell the elect they are the elect?

This cannot be either as the elect could not be certain – even the bible would be pointless. God selects – just hope he chose you as you cannot trust any human agency, feelings, assurances, even assurance perceived from coming heaven or the bible cannot be trusted as that is all part of him that wills and runs.

Why? Because God will have mercy on whomever he will have mercy, and will pity whomever He will pity, and harden whomever we wills and there is nothing to be assured about. You cannot trust anything – just hope you are selected.

NOW, I hope you can see how false this line of logic is and how it fly’s in the face of all scriptures. Jesus tells us to believe in Him. Even Jeremiah 17:7, “Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.” KJV tells we can trust the Lord.

If you can trust, you believe, if you believed, you have faith in God’s work; His call to all that will hear and understand what this belief and faith is all about: God’s work calling us back into a relationship with himself for his service.

You can be assured of your salvation! You can believe! You do have responsibility! You can know the Lord! You can trust the sacrifice of Christ that was for all so some of the all can be saved. Those that are saved bear good fruit.

It is like what Jesus said in Luke 13:18-19:

Luke 13:18-19, “Jesus asked, "What is the Kingdom of God like? What shall I compare it with? It is like this. A man takes a mustard seed and plants it in his field. The plant grows and becomes a tree, and the birds make their nests in its branches." GNB

The seed is the word of God, His call – His dominion re-established within us, it is small but grows. It takes time to grow. The individual is affected by the word as it grows and as growth implies, in time one will change. A person will change from serving selfishness, sin, the ways of the world to reflecting what God is truly like as revealed by Christ Jesus’ nature and character. Walk as He! 1 John 2:6-7, 1 John 4:21.

This takes time and within time, ones faith will grow larger so that others can find comfort in your shade and discover shelter and rest by your example of faith. Is that you? Are you growing? Maturing? Changing? Do others find rest and seek shelter by our living faith in God?

Luke 17:5-10, “The apostles said to the Lord, "Make our faith greater." The Lord answered, "If you had faith as big as a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, 'Pull yourself up by the roots and plant yourself in the sea!' and it would obey you. ”Suppose one of you has a servant who is plowing or looking after the sheep. When he comes in from the field, do you tell him to hurry along and eat his meal? Of course not! Instead, you say to him, 'Get my supper ready, then put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may have your meal.' The servant does not deserve thanks for obeying orders, does he? It is the same with you; when you have done all you have been told to do, say, 'We are ordinary servants; we have only done our duty.' " - GNB

Are the birds coming to you to nest and rest in the faith like you shine? Or are does it scare them away? Are you busy tossing the mulberry trees out of other’s lives by shining God’s kingdom so they can find rest? Or turning people away from the faith that saves by tossing them away? What type of servants are we? A friend of God or not?

Continued below…

Tuesday, 01 August, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Post Two - 7-31-06 – Read Post One – Part Two of Three

Now in the light of what was just written:

How and when does God harden the heart? Romans 1:18-32 reveals that God gave people over to do what they want because of their own preferences – or as the CEV version puts it – “God let these people go their own way’ and ‘God let them follow their own evil desires.” It does not mean God makes people, nor manipulates people to sin and live in sin so He can punish them. God gives up people to uncleanness, sin, because he foresaw that is what they desire above all else.

Likewise, Pharaoh’s heart was previously hard through humanities sin nature before God hardened it further in the Exodus account. God harden because Pharaoh’s heart was already hard by the mere fact that Pharaoh, like you or me, were already born into sin. God knows all things even the thoughts and intents of one’s heart before we were ever born. That is superior foreknowledge far above what we can fully fathom.

What happens when reading Romans 9:11, andRomans 9:16are that only the words translated as ‘works,’ ‘wills’, and ‘runneth’ are focused on. The words in verse 11 –‘call’ and ‘shows mercy’ in verse 16 are not even considered as an option. The fear of human works and deeds for salvation are so great that nothing else can be seen. The picture becomes blurred and God is no longer seen as He truly is: warning, calling, pleading, shining truth before he shapes the clay on the wheel.

What about it then? Yes, no one can work, or wills, or runneth can earn God’s salvation. No one can choose God unless there was a choice offered by God. God knows everything. He is all knowing. He knew us before we all were ever born and had done anything bad or good and that through Adam sin would enter the world. He foresaw Jacob, Abraham, Isaac, would be just as Esau and Pharaoh would be – lost in sin, hard of heart, without hope and God in this world – unless He demonstrated his mercy, show mercy i.e. call to people and make himself known all would be lost. Isaiah 45:21-22

God’s love is like that – showing mercy, displaying justice, proving righteousness, giving a choice to fallen mankind before anyone was even born. This choice proves God’s fairness, his even handedness, that he and his love are real. Again, it is God offering a gift to humanity and asks: choose this day whom you’ll serve! Choose life!

No one could choose if God did not make that choice possible. We have a responsibility given by God to choose. Yes, God had to violate human free will with this choice to prove He is the great I Am and all that He is.

Without freedom, there can be no agape love. God’s nature is one that loves in the realm of agape. God gives freedom because he loves; love is not selfish; it gives. For God not to grant humanity the ability to think and reason independently would prove that God is not true to his nature of love. He fashioned mankind with the ability to decide, think, and to be responsible for what they do. Love allows this as it is not selfish, rude, etc, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. If not, God would fail being God that loves with perfect love.

God foresaw that due solely to his call and mercy some will hear and understand and that others would not. A selfish god would not permit this. A rude god would rule by sovereign force. An unkind god would select, elect, un-judicially. A god such as this would be guilty of sin and causing evil, which is not in accord to the true nature and character of God that sins not and acts righteously, whose ways are perfect.

From His superior foreknowing God can shape and mold us all. God’s love shapes fairly and justly. God judiciously elects and selects based on foreknowing all things. Sin remains the creatures own doing and God with true all powerful sovereignty provides the fair means to rid it from creation: by a call, show of mercy. Leave out the call and showing mercy, you have not the God of the bible but only a god wrath, hate, vengeance, who is partial and cruel.

When Romans 9:11,16 tells us that is not him that wills, works, or runs it is not implying that the choice God gave to humanity involves any human works, wills, or human runnething. What it means is that it is of God’s own initiative to call and display mercy. We can do nothing unless God speaks calls, shows mercy, warns, and in doing so, engages human responsibility to accept or reject the mercy displayed with the justice of love. That is how He shows mercy on whom He wills.

We are responsible for how we hear. God already knows the answer but we do not. If a person God foresaw rejecting his call, he can make them a Pharaoh or an Esau along as in doing so has a divine purpose like the bible proves. Both Esau and Pharaoh served higher purposes as I mentioned in my prior writings. Pharaoh and Esau rejected God’s call. Isaiah 55:7

God created and thus fashioned a choice. God’s choice is what is implied Romans Chapter Nine. God foreknowing the final verdict of a person’s life beforehand is what is being conveyed within its text. The bible elsewhere testifies that God engages humanity and seeks those that he foreknows would hear and understand.

What else can make this clear to you? Choice is impossible without God. God knows all things. Because God knows all, He certainly knows who will be his and who will be not based on his calling out; that just and perfect process involved in electing and selecting.

That is the message of Romans Chapter Nine. Jeremiah 18 speaks of the same thing in the story of the potter. Without the arms and hands of the potter reaching forth to the lump of clay there could be no vessels made. The clay is from he same lump: all have sinned. Stop seeing only the wheel and clay upon it – look at the potter. See how the clay is prepared by the potter before the wheel can ever be applied.

The bible prophetically describes Jesus as the saving arm of God, God’s hands that save, Isaiah 59:16-21, Isaiah 64:6-8, Isaiah 50:2. Jesus demonstrated God’s mercy and the Holy Spirit changes, John 16:7-16. The hands and arms of the potter are Jesus and God the Holy Spirit. Jesus you can say allegorically is the right arm of God and the Holy Spirit the left reaching out towards the lump of clay called humanity. God the Father is the Potter shouting to the clay words of merciful warnings, teachings, and shining beams of light upon it, Daniel 12:3 – note the word ‘shine - 2094 Strong’s Number’ used here.

This lump is fallen, filled with sin but still the potter, God the Father calls out his warnings and instructions to repent, then reaches towards humanity with His right hand, Jesus Christ, demonstrating his mercy and by his left hand, the Holy Spirit to fashion change. The clay can now be shaped as it has been prepared.

You see, the potter must first prepare the lump to be shaped before it can be used and put upon the wheel. Water is added too or removed from the lump of clay then the clay kneaded before the spinning wheel can be applied. This preparation involves foreknowing what’s in the clay.

As the book of Jeremiah 18:5-10 says, “Then the word of the LORD came to me: "O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?" declares the LORD, "Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel. If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do for it.” NIV

God calls, he warns, he shows mercy to all but not all will accept his mercy, nor desire to be change by God’s Spirit, thus he shapes the clay according to how each particle responds to his words as he foreknew they would and his hands reach forth a shapes accordingly.

God speaks to the clay before shaping it. That is the message of Jeremiah 18:1-10, Isaiah 64:6-10, Isaiah 45 – God calls, speaks to the clay, warns! Admonishes! Instructs! Applies water, (John 16:8-9, John 4:14) and kneads (John 3:17-21, Romans 6:23) the clay before it reaches the wheel. If they refuse and rebel they will perish. God is astoundingly even handed and fair!

God will not break his own laws and nor will God cause, manipulate, people to rebel and sin either. To do so says what about God? If God cannot keep his word, then would he still be God? In the design of man, God’s love grants people freedom even at the risk of them abusing it, love still gives. When abuse occurs, God is still sovereignly all powerful to maintain control. In this, his mercy reaches for you and I, calling, warning, pleading for us to return to such a wonderful Lord God of all.

Therefore, Pharaoh was warned and would not let God’s people go and was destroyed. Esau and those like him refuse to hear God’s words that reveal who He is and reject being shaped by God’s loving hands and are thus rejected by God. How about you? It is not too late. God is calling, return to the Lord! He is calling! His hands are kneading and watering you souls! Repent! Return to God!

Tuesday, 01 August, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Post Three - 7-31-06 – Part Three of Three

Read Post One and Two above

If one holds such a black and white interpretation of Romans Chapter Nine regarding that all forms human agency is impossible for men and women to receive salvation then we need to explore this line of thinking further.

While it is factually true that no human being can choose God’s salvation from and of their-own volition, earn it, will it, or work it out on his or her own, God still offers a choice. Since God offers his mercy, it is his offer that saves and not humanity offering something up to God. Without God’s offer of mercy, showing it, proving it - none could be saved. Since it is God’s offer, this provides a free-choice for individuals and therefore still remains a work of God and not mankind’s.

God designed humanity to be rational, thinking, reasoning beings. Doing so, absolves God of being directly responsible for creating sin and imperfections. God’s wisdom cleanly displayed! God’s display of mercy, his call, and his grace engages human agency to decide own his or her own to accept the offer or reject it.

God is all knowing. This is a concept way beyond mere mortal words to describe. You cannot describe it in a step by step linear fashion. God knows all – Period. He knows how one will answer his call; respond to it, what each will do with his call before any person was ever born. He knows all. From this superior foreknowledge, God can shape, place, and assign people as he sees best.

It remains God’s call and not humanities work. What can make this clearer for you? Without God’s call, all humanity would remain forever lost and damned with no possibility of choosing God or attaining salvation in any shape or form. However, God did and does call and show mercy and this now logically provides what? A Choice!

Yes, a divine choice that makes human beings absolutely responsible for their sins and not God. A heavenly option provided by God that proves his very nature and character that He is just, merciful, loving, kind, righteous, all wise, all powerful, all knowing, completely sovereign as he controls all things with equity, justice, and judgment that is way beyond what our mortal minds can fully and adequately comprehend, Job 34:10-15.

This choice is demonstrate throughout the bible and the scripture evidence for it is overwhelming. Here are just a few, Deuteronomy 11:26-28 option of obeying, Deuteronomy 13:18 we have responsibility in to listen, Deuteronomy 6:22-33 we can hear his voice and live. Job 34:11, Psalms 62:12 God repays man in accordance to his work. God test the heart and is just Psalms 7:9-11, Works of the wicked are of their own hand Psalms 9:16. From this we can see that God offers options. If he offers, what are we to do but answer?

Again Psalms 9:10, Isaiah 55:3 and verse 7, Jeremiah 17:7 state for us to trust the Lord. How can we if God does not engage our minds with his mercy? Isaiah 1:18 God calls us to reason with him, why would God say this if he did not first call out to engage us and tell us to choose whom we will serve in love as a son does a loving father?

John 3:16 tells us to believe in Christ. How can we if were never given that option; that option that engages us. Without this call of God, all humanity would remain lost. God would even have been unjust to create all humanity just to remain lost and damned. This is contrary to who God is. He is fair, righteous, and all his ways are perfect. He shows this by calling to all humanity with such grace that on one hand saves one soul and next can damn another due solely to his option he provided mankind with. Choose.

He knows the answers of each person before we all were ever born but still God ask and thus proving what about God? He Foreknows all things and shapes and places people in the scheme, time, and places throughout the history of humanity. Such knowledge is too wonderful to fully comprehend! Glory to God that He is and is a rewarder of those that diligently seek him!

You see, it remains God’s call that saves and not mans acts. He shows a foreknown mercy, compassion, and even hardening based on His calling out to humanity which produces a choice for us, without this choice, none could become born again. This is what I have pointing out: Jesus Christ our true doctrine - You can get to know him in a personal relationship that changes everything!


Romans chapter nine tells us the same thing. If not, then it is denying the rest of the bible that speaks of the call, option, choices God imposes upon mankind.

Now, the way that many interpret Romans Chapter Nine, deny God’s calls, and option given to humanity. While they factually state that no human being can choose God’s salvation from their-own volition, earn it, will it, or work it out on his or her own, they deny that God can ever offer a choice because in their mind this becomes a human work, will, runnething of human agency.

If this then is truly the case, you need to interpret Romans Chapter Nine in strict black and white terms and equally apply it to all scripture. Therefore, God just selects and elects. If God just selects and elects based on the fact that God is Sovereign and can do whatever he pleases, then why did Jesus come into the world and do the work of mercy he did? Why bother with the call?

If you state that only for the elects sake God calls, you may be philosophically correct but theologically misled. To just call the elect out is weak as there is in reality no way that even the elect could possibly know or discern they were of the elect. All such knowing and discerning is of human agency and cannot be trusted even if it is claimed it came from God. How can this be so?

All hearing, bible illumination is interpreted within the mind of a human agent and thus cannot be trusted. Bible reading cannot be trusted due to being part of the human psyche of comprehending. How can one really and truly spiritual discern anything at all – since the heart of humanity is desperately wicked and deceitful? After all it is written, not of him who wills or runs or works but God who shows mercy. After all, all human agency comes under the realm of self will, sin, and deception.

If one is born again by God’s selection in this black and white manner, then would not all feelings, interpretation of scripture, preaching, and sense of forced grace be part of human agency? You reason within your mind, you hear, understand and in doing so you willeth, runneth, and worketh. Human agency is brought into play and thus you could never know you were born again due to sin nature’s free will to sin.

Only God’s election stands. There would be no logical reason for Jesus to have come and pour out his spirit as God selects: Black and white – no middle ground. If no human agency can ever absolutely be a part of salvation, then there is no possible way for the elect to be assured of their salvation. God could only reveal this on judgment day.

The great commission would become a farce as God just elects. You are damned if you obey God or not. Maybe you are saved and maybe you are not. There would be no way of knowing you were saved or not until judgment day.

This is where this style of thinking ultimately leads: On solid Rock hard Doctrine I stand, all other is sinking sand. There is no Christ only doctrine that points out clearly how man damns other men with judgment: I stand on doctrine alone! I am the elect! I and I and I is repeated thus proving that self will was never slain within themselves as they claim it had been in them!

On the other hand, since God designed humanity to think and reason independently, which absolves God of creating sin, He offers a choice. Since God offers a choice, humanity can now choose because God offered it. Thus the great commission, Christ’s work on the cross, and the fullness of God’s indwelling Spirit can be known and experienced as real certainties.

Thus, your faith will grow and others will see and seek rest under the shade of your tree.

Yes, Jesus the tree of life!

Tuesday, 01 August, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Part Four – Conclusions and Investigations – August 2, 2006.

See Parts One through Three Above

Reader Note: You’ll need to read Part Three of Three before reading this, please do in order to gain a better understanding of what is being said here and not take statement out of context. God Bless!


John 6:44, “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.” KJV

Does God draw people based solely upon His predetermination or based upon foreknowing? Even when the bible boldly proclaims that whom God foreknows, he predestines and whom he predestines he calls in Romans 8:29, as well as 1 Peter 1:2 statement that declares ‘elect according to the foreknowledge of God’ many adhere to an interpretation that God draws, elects, solely by predetermination first and foremost.

Everything, according to a predetermination world view is caused by God. He made you sneeze, had you run over your pet cat, God broke your arm; God assigns people to be wicked, and others to become saints. The list goes on and on.

Many adherents of this view teach that God hardens hearts because he predetermines who should and who should not have a hard heart without thought of God’s foresight into why God would harden somebody’s heart in the first place. It is either black or white to them and so is their gospel as it has no light.

The crux of this argument resides in Romans Chapter Nine statement that it is not of human will, works, or running that saves but only upon God’s predetermination on who he wills to shows mercy, compassion, or harden. At first glance this seems logical but to apply its logic to where it leads, ends up negating the reason for the gospel and Christ’s work on the cross.

This interpretation denies all scriptures that state otherwise and verses that prove God offers a choice to humanity that holds them accountable for how they hear, understand, and respond. Thus, confirming that God does not damn a soul because he predetermine it but rather that the soul that hates God, God also hates. He loves those that love him and hates those that hate him. Sin is the creatures own doing and not God’s.

While it is an absolute fact that no human being can will, run, work, or earn their salvation own his or her own, God’s call belongs to God alone and it is his call that creates a choice for human beings to accept or reject. Without this, none could receive or reject the gospel message.

Yes, God is in control but how he controls is based upon his superior foreknowing and not only on predetermination. If God controls and elects based only upon God’s predetermination then God cannot control all things, all ways, and in all circumstances. Therefore, God governs by his foreknowledge which guides how he predestines, just as the bible states.

Many people would like to imply that this portion of scripture in John 6:44 proves that God elects solely upon His sovereign predetermination based on their interpretation of Romans Chapter Nine. In simple essence, they state in black and white terms that - “No man can come to Jesus Christ, except by God drawing a selected person – thus elects them.”

That is a nice analogy and holds philosophical truth but again it misleads one theologically to support something the bible does not actually teach. Again, if God draws a person based on Romans Chapter Nine’s point that no one that wills, works, runs can be saved as it is God that draws him takes the message out of the cross as there would be no need for Jesus’ work, which is an absurdity as God just draws.

According to this world view, it is either black or white. It has to one way or the other. If God just draws, the conclusion is why did Jesus have too come? We go back to that. There is nothing anyone can do than just wait and hope that God draws them. No assurance is possible despite the fact that the bible claims you can have that assurance.

If this were the case; when and if God does draw you, how can you be sure he is or has? After all, all feelings, intellectual ascent, believing, faith, bible reading, preaching, etc is an activity of human will, works, and running. Therefore, God just draws – just hope you are the pick of God’s election boys and girls. You cannot trust you are being drawn by God, as that is an act of human will, works, and running.

The problem with using John 6:44 as a proof text to prove God just predetermines with no thought on choosing whomever for whatever reason, and damns and saves based on God’s predetermination alone denies what the Greek word ‘draw’ means in the cited passage. This line of thinking also neglects the context the next few verses which follow that clarify and back up what this word means without controversy.

John 6:45, “It is written in the prophets, and they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.” KJV

Interesting, it goes back to the human agency of hearing and learning something about God through what they hear. In verse 44 the Greek work translated ‘draw’ means literally to draw by an inward power, to be led, encouraged, pleaded with, shown to come not by force but rather by an internally effective process though all means of rational conviction. Guess what? This indeed lines up with what John 16:7-15 teaches. Do you hear?

Thus, they shall be taught by God by hearing and learning from God something. Yes, this goes back to God showing mercy, calling, pleading, preparing the clay for the wheel, or you can say God’s pleading to all so all will respond in someway to God’s pleadings. Proving what about God? He is truly perfect in all his ways, Psalms 11:5, Psalms 12:6-7.

God in Old Testament times used prophets to plead his case and draw people back to himself; he did so with Nineveh in Jonah’s time. God gives the option of obeying or rejecting his message, his call, his mercy. In other words, do you believe or not what God is showing and teaching? God changes not.

The message of Psalms 78 concurs with this too. Note verse 41 and all the times the people would not believe despite all the times God reveals himself. Did he cause them to sin just to leave us an objective lesson? Answer is No as this would cause God to violate his own nature – Job 34:10-17.

God pleaded and shown his mercy unfettered to them. Their hearts were hard by sin not God. They chose to rebel and God honored this choice. Hebrews 3:7-15 states that they harden their own hearts as does Psalms 95:7-8. In this God leaves us an objective lesson not to act like they and rebel as it leads to death.

“Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts…” Hebrews 3:7-8. Notice it states, “Today, if you hear…” and not “Today, if God predetermines …” It is of this nature and type of drawing is how God draws. He seeks those he foreknew would hear at the time, date, place in the ongoing today’s of tomorrow. He is pleading, calling, showing mercy and then we have a choice given by God to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and all that He has done. Some will hear God’s call and return, some will not and reject his call as all is foreknown by God.

When God does harden someone’s heart it is because he foreknows they’ll never accept the mercy that he shows as he did with Pharaoh. Those that love God learn to depart from iniquity as Jacob learned and those that God hates choose iniquity as Esau did. Be like Jacob and receive a new name from God: A new character and new nature! Do not be like Esau.

Now back to the book of John.

John 6:46-47, “Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” KJV

This leads us back to Romans Chapter 10, which by the way comes after Chapter Nine in context demonstrating Paul’s main points brought in Romans Eight and Nine concerning topic under discussion.

Romans 10:8-10 “But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” KJV

Rom 10:10 12, “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.” KJV

Rom 10:13-15, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” KJV

Rom 10:16-18, “But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.” KJV


We go back to God offering a choice to believe in Him or not. That is how God draws people Christ. He engages their reason as it is written, Isaiah 1:18, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” KJV

He draws by teaching and instructing people about his mercy and grace, and offers to all a choice to choose this day whom they’ll serve. Confession is a human agency. Faith is a gift from God that proves God’s grace is mercifully drawing and calling. What will be your confession of life? God asks even when he already knows the answer! Wow! What an awesome God proving all that he is true! God is absolutely worthy of praise!

Thus, the great Commission takes on new meaning, Matthew 28:18-20 and Luke 24:46-47.

We are truly the light of the world:

Matthew 5:13-16, "You are like salt for the whole human race. But if salt loses its saltiness, there is no way to make it salty again. It has become worthless, so it is thrown out and people trample on it. "You are like light for the whole world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one lights a lamp and puts it under a bowl; instead it is put on the lamp stand, where it gives light for everyone in the house. In the same way your light must shine before people, so that they will see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.” GNB

What’s your answer? Shine Calvin? Wesley? Armenianism? Or Shine – teach instruct others of Christ by your life, conduct, and words?

What is your answer – your confession?

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