Thursday, October 30, 2008

mythical free will.

“…they gave of their own accord” (2 Corinthians 8:3).
"…they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God” (2 Corinthians 8:5).

“…thanks be to God Who puts the same earnestness on your behalf in the heart of Titus” (2 Corinthians 8:16).
“…he not only accepted our appeal, but being himself very earnest, he has gone to you of his own accord” (2 Corinthians 8:17).

Three wills. The individuals acting seem to have a will. The apostle and associates seem to have a will. God’s will is present. Three wills, right?

Nope. Why did the Macedonians give “of their own accord”? Because of the “grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia” (2 Corinthians 8:1).

Titus’ “own accord” is inspired by an “earnestness” which was put in his heart by God (2 Corinthians 8:16).

What about the will of the apostle and associates? “We are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). Do you think Paul would argue as passionately as most humanistic philosophers masquerading as theologians do today for the cause of the mythical human free will?

All that is left is the absolute sovereign will of God, dedicated to working for His own glory, the only thing in the universe that will satisfy and bring peace and joy.

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).

“…work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Philippians 2:12,13).

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

if it crawls like a rat...

He looked at me and said, “I’m a Christian. I believe in Jesus.” Then he proceeded to tell me everything else he believed in, a melting pot of religions, all filtered through his feelings.

Another, at a different time: “I’m a Christian. I was baptized as a child.”

Since the term originates from the Bible, perhaps it is the Bible that should exclusively define the term.

“…the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch” (Acts 11:26). Who were called “Christians”? Those who merely express a belief in Jesus? No, “the disciples” were called “Christians.” A Christian is a disciple, or learner, of Jesus. Unless you are actively and continually following Jesus and learning more about Him, you are not a Christian.

What does the Bible say a disciple/Christian looks like?
A disciple/Christian is becoming like Jesus (Matthew 10:24,25).
A disciple/Christian regards Jesus above family, possessions, and life (Mark 8:34; Luke 12:22; 14:26,27,33).
A disciple/Christian makes other disciples/Christians (Matthew 28:18-20; John 15:8).
A disciple/Christian keeps Jesus’ words (John 8:31; Acts 6:7).
A disciple/Christian loves all other disciples (John 13:35; Acts 11:29).