Archive for sovereignty

Jude: Predestined With Free Will

Posted in Jude with tags , , , , , , , on December 16, 2018 by paulthepoke

Jude 1:4a For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation…

Sneaky, ravenous false teachers were known and predestined before time. That is what Jude and the text are saying. The vocabulary and grammar state the following.

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…who were long… This is the adverb πάλαι/palai. Its meaning is of old, former; long ago.

These “persons” were beforehand marked out. This is the root word προγράφω/prographo in the Greek. The prefix “pro” meaning before is attached to “grapho” meaning to write. The verb tense of the term προγράφω/prographo indicates it was written with binding results. When it was written long ago, it was written once and for all. It was written a long time ago before these folks were even a thought and it is a done deal. The results are not changing.

Some will argue this may not seem very fair God to create someone for the express purpose of being a false teacher then sentence them to judgment. Remember these people, as well as us as individuals, have free will and freedom of choice. And with our choices come consequences. This is the problem with the critic, specifically the atheist. These folks want no part of consequences for their actions.

Romans 13:2 Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.

As fallen and broken people, who are we to challenge or question the will and authority of God? He created and gave us life. We all have chosen to sin. We are all under the physical death penalty in this life.The question is when that death will occur. In our condition, do we really want to be in the business of challenging God?


A great example of God’s sovereign will and individual choices is Jeremiah 18. God’s divine plan go hand and hand with free will. God knows our choices before we were made. He knows the end from before the beginning. Our individual wills are nothing in comparison to the will of God. As individuals, we overvalue the impact of our free choice.

God is the potter. We are figuratively and literally lumps of clay.

Jeremiah 18:4 But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he made it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make.

Jeremiah 18:10 …if it does evil in My sight by not obeying My voice, then I will think better of the good with which I had promised to bless it.

Yes, God’s will is supreme. Suppose we did not have the freedom to make choices. Without free will, would there be a need for commandments? NO! We were not created to be mindless robots or taskmasters of an all-powerful God. Commandments were written by God to appeal to our sense of volition. We can choose to obey just as well as we can choose to disobey.

Jeremiah 18:11 “So now then, speak to the men of Judah and against the inhabitants of Jerusalem saying, ‘Thus says the LORD, “Behold, I am fashioning calamity against you and devising a plan against you. Oh turn back, each of you from his evil way, and reform your ways and your deeds.”’

Jeremiah 18:12 “But they will say, ‘It’s hopeless! For we are going to follow our own plans, and each of us will act according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.’

With choice comes responsibility and consequences to a just God.

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Isaiah 5:15-17,21 God’s View on Pride

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , on July 24, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 5:15-17 So the common man will be humbled and the man of importance abased, the eyes of the proud also will be abased. But the LORD of hosts will be exalted in judgment, and the holy God will show Himself holy in righteousness. Then the lambs will graze as in their pasture, and strangers will eat in the waste places of the wealthy. 

Isaiah 5:21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight! 

V. 15 The context of the verse is all of humanity. It does not matter if you are an everyday Joe or a hot shot. The idea of the grammar in Hebrew is men are being brought to humility. The point is repeated a second time to make sure the idea is understood.

V. 16 God is set apart, separate, or holy. He has the moral clout to execute justice. He is a truthful, capable, and justified ruler.

V. 17 There is debate whether the language in this verse is figurative or literal. Hebrew Linguists indicate the text literally reads, “Young rams, and ruins, fatlings, resident aliens, will eat.” Will strangers really eat in places where the rich used to live? Will the rich have their places destroyed? The bottom line is this. Animals and people are eating in locations that are not their usual places to dine.

God takes pride seriously. Just ask King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The king was full of himself and thought he was the source of all of his success and power. Nebuchadnezzar had not finished his statement on his self-proclaimed greatness when Daniel 4:31-33 provides a reminder of who is in charge.

“While the word was in the king’s mouth, a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is declared: sovereignty has been removed from you, and you will be driven away from mankind, and your dwelling place will be with the beasts of the field. You will be given grass to eat like cattle, and seven periods of time will pass over you until you recognize that the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind and bestows it on whomever He wishes.’

 “Immediately the word concerning Nebuchadnezzar was fulfilled; and he was driven away from mankind and began eating grass like cattle, and his body was drenched with the dew of heaven until his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws…

Some would say this is just a crazy story from the Bible. You may want to consider there are real psychological disorders where people think they are animals. Check out zoanthropy and lycanthropy. More specifically, boanthropy is a condition where individuals think they are cattle. The king’s diet was grass like cattle. The king was not accustomed to a diet of grass.

This episode did ultimately result in a change of attitude for King Nebuchadnezzar. He came to understand God was in charge (Daniel 4:34-37).

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before stumbling.

PaulthePoke

Prophecy Watch & Bible Study

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