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Whether you believe in a higher power or not, this forum is dedicated to the topic of religion and spirituality. We live in a diverse world with different morals and ideas when it comes to our beliefs, so come in and share your thoughts.

Postby qmark » Sun Apr 01, 2012 12:57 pm

OraProNobis wrote:He can be powerless to stop it, in the context that He promised not to interfere with free will , unless with our own free will we invite Him to intercede, and even then He may have reasons to not intercede as we hope He will.

He is very much in control of Himself. His own actions are to keep His promise that He would not interfere with mans free will, unless invoked or invited.


I am a proponent of free will as much as the next guy mainly because I don't believe it is a "work" when one turns their life over to Christ. However, that being said, I don't recall the particular verse where He promises not to interfere. Can you, or any Christian here on the board, point that verse out to me?

OraProNobis wrote:As far as for asking for the book and Chapter of the verse for some of the things Mary says, I will say this.

Anyone who would think that the only Holy Words sanctioned by the Holy Spirit are to ONLY be found in a book compiled close to 2000 years ago, is basically saying God quit speaking to us through prophets, and Saints the day those stories were written.


Are you a Mormon because that is certainly what the Mormans say to justify their belief in the "Book of Mormon"?
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Postby OraProNobis » Sun Apr 01, 2012 2:00 pm

qmark wrote:

Are you a Mormon because that is certainly what the Mormans say to justify their belief in the "Book of Mormon"?


No, I am a Catholic , and the Catholic church has for many 100's of years (close to two centuries) endorsed the messages received and given to certain visionaries , after careful scrutiny that they are indeed of divine origin.

Catholics are not the only ones who believe the Holy Spirit does continue to manifest itself ,and give messages of divine origin. Many Christian churches believe in this. To not think so would be to imply that the Living God is no longer working among His people.

The problem as always, is which ones are legit and which ones are not.

I will say , from the approved Marian apparitions, from the Catholic Church, all of what they have said would happen, has happened, except for a few things yet to happen from the messages of Fatima.

By the fruits of medjugorje, you can see the divine .

One thing for certain, God will reveal what was inspired by Him and sent by Him , and what was not, at some point .
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Postby frrostedman » Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:31 pm

qmark wrote:
OraProNobis wrote:He can be powerless to stop it, in the context that He promised not to interfere with free will , unless with our own free will we invite Him to intercede, and even then He may have reasons to not intercede as we hope He will.

He is very much in control of Himself. His own actions are to keep His promise that He would not interfere with mans free will, unless invoked or invited.


I am a proponent of free will as much as the next guy mainly because I don't believe it is a "work" when one turns their life over to Christ. However, that being said, I don't recall the particular verse where He promises not to interfere. Can you, or any Christian here on the board, point that verse out to me?

Ora, I was going to ask the same thing.

Can you point us to where God promises to never interfere?

When I asked how a non-believer can pray to a God whom he does not know, you mentioned the work of the Holy Spirit. That would be an example of God interceding, or, "interfering," would it not? The work of the Holy Spirit is a direct intervention into our affairs by God. We could debate about whether or not the intervention is justified by our calling or not but either way, it's a direct act by God which permanently changes the course of history.
Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man. - Albert Einstein
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Postby frrostedman » Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:47 pm

MONERGISM AND SYNERGISM
R.C. Sproul

A monergistic work is a work produced singly, by one person. The prefix mono- means one. The word erg refers to a unit of work. Words like energy are built upon this root. A synergistic work is one that involves cooperation between two or more persons or things. The prefix syn- means “together with.”

I labor this distinction for a reason. It is fair to say that the whole debate between Rome and Martin Luther hung on this single point. At issue was this: Is regeneration a monergistic work of God, or is it a synergistic work that requires cooperation between man and God?

When my professor wrote, “Regeneration precedes faith” on the blackboard, he was clearly siding with the monergistic answer. To be sure, after a person is regenerated, that person cooperates by exercising faith and trust. But the first step, the step of regeneration by which a person is quickened to spiritual life, is the work of God and of God alone. The initiative is with God, not with us.

The reason we do not cooperate with regenerating grace before it acts upon us and in us is because we cannot. We cannot because we are spiritually, dead. We can no more assist the Holy Spirit in the quickening of our souls to spiritual life than Lazarus could help Jesus raise him from the dead. [after which Jesus told Nicodemus in no uncertain terms, no one can enter the kingdom of God without first being spiritually reborn... and I emphasize again that Lazarus took no part in his regeneration... I contend this event was a calculated, symbolic, deeply meaningful one.]

It is probably true that the majority of professing Christians in the world today believe that the order of our salvation is this: Faith precedes regeneration. We are exhorted to choose to be born again. But telling a man to choose rebirth is like exhorting a corpse to choose resurrection. The exhortation falls upon deaf ears.

When I began to wrestle with the professor’s argument, I was surprised to learn that his strange-sounding teaching was not a novel innovation to theology. I found the same teaching in Augustine, Martin Luther, John Calvin, Jonathan Edwards, and George Whitefield. I was astonished to find it even in the teaching of the great medieval Catholic theologian Thomas Aquinas.


That these giants of Christian history reached the same conclusion on this point made a tremendous impact on me. I was aware that they were neither individually nor collectively infallible. Each and all of them could be mistaken. But I was impressed. I was especially impressed by Thomas Aquinas.

Thomas Aquinas is regarded as the Doctor Angelicus of the Roman Catholic church. For centuries his theological teaching was accepted as official dogma by most Catholics. So he was the last person I expected to hold such a view of regeneration. Yet Aquinas insisted that regenerating grace is operative grace, not cooperative grace. Aquinas spoke of prevenient grace, but he spoke of a grace that comes before faith, which is the grace of regeneration.

The key phrase in Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians on this matter is this:

even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved). (Ephesians 2:5)

Here Paul locates the time when regeneration occurs. It takes place when we were dead. With one thunderbolt of apostolic revelation all attempts to give the initiative in regeneration to man is smashed utterly and completely. Again, dead men do not cooperate with grace. The spiritually dead take no initiative. Unless regeneration takes place first, there is no possibility of faith.

This says nothing different from what Jesus said to Nicodemus. Unless a man is born again first, he cannot possibly see or enter the kingdom of God. If we believe that faith precedes regeneration, then we set our thinking and therefore ourselves in direct opposition not only to Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Edwards, and others, but we stand opposed to the teaching of Paul and of our Lord Himself.

---------------

This is an excerpt from an excellent (short) discourse entitled The New Genesis
Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man. - Albert Einstein
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Postby OraProNobis » Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:35 pm

frrostedman wrote:
Thomas Aquinas is regarded as the Doctor Angelicus of the Roman Catholic church. For centuries his theological teaching was accepted as official dogma by most Catholics. So he was the last person I expected to hold such a view of regeneration. Yet Aquinas insisted that regenerating grace is operative grace, not cooperative grace. Aquinas spoke of prevenient grace, but he spoke of a grace that comes before faith, which is the grace of regeneration.


Could not this "operating grace" be effected by prayer of others ?

Could not the prayers of others also help with the process of faith after the initial regeneration ?
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Postby frrostedman » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:00 pm

OraProNobis wrote:
frrostedman wrote:
Thomas Aquinas is regarded as the Doctor Angelicus of the Roman Catholic church. For centuries his theological teaching was accepted as official dogma by most Catholics. So he was the last person I expected to hold such a view of regeneration. Yet Aquinas insisted that regenerating grace is operative grace, not cooperative grace. Aquinas spoke of prevenient grace, but he spoke of a grace that comes before faith, which is the grace of regeneration.


Could not this "operating grace" be effected by prayer of others ?

Could not the prayers of others also help with the process of faith after the initial regeneration ?

Ultimately it's a debate as to whether God is sovereign, as I believe, or is limited in His power and obligated to take direction from His creation, as it seems you believe.

I don't understand why any believer would (and most would) struggle with the idea that everything is to the credit and glory of God.

I wouldn't expect you to deny this, but I'll ask it anyway. Do you believe that God is at least indirectly responsible for all things that come to pass?
Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man. - Albert Einstein
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Postby OraProNobis » Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:40 pm


frrostedman wrote:
Ultimately it's a debate as to whether God is sovereign, as I believe, or is limited in His power and obligated to take direction from His creation, as it seems you believe.


Please don't twist what I say around to imply a meaning that I did not give.
If God did not WANT prayer, why would the bible even mention prayer ? You twist that around to say that I mean He is obligated to take direction from prayer, when I merely said it was an invitation and supplication to God that He desires.

James 5:16
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.


Matthew 26:41
"Keep alert and pray. Otherwise temptation will overpower you. For though the spirit is willing enough, the body is weak!"


Romans 8:26-27
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.


2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.


James 5:16
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.


Psalm 34:17
The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.


Psalm 91:15
He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.


frrostedman wrote:
I don't understand why any believer would (and most would) struggle with the idea that everything is to the credit and glory of God.


Sorry, But I will not credit and glorify God for the atrocious sins humanity has committed under the influence, or procession of the Dark and evil angels.

God may have allowed this to happen, only because He keeps His word. It was not preordained, and was NOT "His will" for them to happen.
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Postby frrostedman » Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:27 pm

OraProNobis wrote:frrostedman wrote:
Ultimately it's a debate as to whether God is sovereign, as I believe, or is limited in His power and obligated to take direction from His creation, as it seems you believe.


Please don't twist what I say around to imply a meaning that I did not give.
If God did not WANT prayer, why would the bible even mention prayer ? You twist that around to say that I mean He is obligated to take direction from prayer, when I merely said it was an invitation and supplication to God that He desires.[/quote]
And likewise I guess, you twisted the meaning of my words. I never said God does not desire prayer. I only said he is not obligated to answer our prayers in the fashion we desire. All of your Scriptures in evidence of our admonitions to pray are therefore irrelevant because we agree on it.

Sorry, But I will not credit and glorify God for the atrocious sins humanity has committed under the influence, or procession of the Dark and evil angels.

God may have allowed this to happen, only because He keeps His word. It was not preordained, and was NOT "His will" for them to happen.

I never said evil acts are God's will. You said that. Preordained is a fact. Unless we are talking about different gods.
Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man. - Albert Einstein
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Postby OraProNobis » Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:41 pm

frrostedman wrote:
I only said he is not obligated to answer our prayers in the fashion we desire. All of your Scriptures in evidence of our admonitions to pray are therefore irrelevant because we agree on it.


I'm sorry if I confused the meaning behind your words, and I do agree that God is not required to answer our prayers in the fashion we desire. But this does not imply that God does not require or desire our prayers , especially on the behalf of others.

I was under the impression that you were trying to say that God does not need our prayers to act , and in fact that is true , but He does want them , and it the heartfelt felt prayers of a just person who moves the heart of God, to willfully intercede.
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Postby frrostedman » Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:47 pm

Just for the sake curiosity.

How does one square up the following:

  • God never interferes with our affairs because that would break His agreement not to affect our free will
  • We should pray for God to intercede on our behalf and on the behalf of others
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