Is There Any Good Reason...

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seer
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Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by seer » Thu Oct 10, 2013 6:58 am

...we (Christians) can think of as to why God just doesn't speak tenderly to us all - all humanity? It certainly would clear up a lot of issues, and make His presence more evidently known. And perhaps draw more men to Him.
Thanks to the human heart by which we live, thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears, To me the meanest flower that blows can give thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears. Wordsworth

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steve
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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by steve » Thu Oct 10, 2013 9:52 am

A few thoughts...

1. If God only wanted the largest number of people to come to believe in His existence in this lifetime, then what you are suggesting would seem to be a sensible policy. At least everyone would then know God is there.

However, as I understand the plan of God, He is not just looking to have His existence acknowledged by the largest number of people (at least not at this time), but He is seeking a certain kind of people. According to Jesus, the Father is seeking those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. This means that the people God wants to have with Him are those who possess traits of spirituality and integrity, which bundle does not describe most people, and would not describe them any better were they to receive a divine revelation. God has, in fact, done just what you are suggesting on many occasions (e.g., to Adam and Eve in the Garden, to Israel at the Red Sea and in the Wilderness; to Israel on Mount Carmel; to Israel in the time of Jesus' ministry among them, etc.). These manifestations did not result in widespread spirituality or love of truth among the people.

2. If being born was only about becoming aware that there is a God, and then dying and going to heaven, then it seems as if God should have adopted the policy you suggest. However, God actually has a purpose that many people (including Christians) often fail to grasp, which is not simply about dragging as many people to heaven as possible (the dragnet in the parable brought in far more fish than the fisherman cared to keep).

Since God is recruiting co-heirs to rule with Christ, He is seeking, training and testing those who might qualify. Believing without seeing is one of the qualifications that man is being tested on. To reign with Christ, one must share His character, His selflessness, His unswerving loyalty to and trust of His Father. Those not interested in this destiny, and therefore unable to pass the course, need not apply. God has made every person potentially capable of meeting the qualifications (with His help, of course! No one can do it any other way). The spiritual desire that seeks first the kingdom of God, and the integrity that seeks His righteousness, do not seem to be what most people choose as their primary pursuits in life. This deficiency would not be remedied by God's merely making Himself more obvious (as if He could be more obvious!). Some people just don't want God, or what He is offering, on His terms.

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by seer » Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:07 am

steve wrote:A few thoughts...

1. If God only wanted the largest number of people to come to believe in His existence in this lifetime, then what you are suggesting would seem to be a sensible policy. At least everyone would then know God is there.

However, as I understand the plan of God, He is not just looking to have His existence acknowledged by the largest number of people (at least not at this time), but He is seeking a certain kind of people. According to Jesus, the Father is seeking those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. This means that the people God wants to have with Him are those who possess traits of spirituality and integrity, which bundle does not describe most people, and would not describe them any better were they to receive a divine revelation. God has, in fact, done just what you are suggesting on many occasions (e.g., to Adam and Eve in the Garden, to Israel at the Red Sea and in the Wilderness; to Israel on Mount Carmel; to Israel in the time of Jesus' ministry among them, etc.). These manifestations did not result in widespread spirituality or love of truth among the people.

2. If being born was only about becoming aware that there is a God, and then dying and going to heaven, then it seems as if God should have adopted the policy you suggest. However, God actually has a purpose that many people (including Christians) often fail to grasp, which is not simply about dragging as many people to heaven as possible (the dragnet in the parable brought in far more fish than the fisherman cared to keep).

Since God is recruiting co-heirs to rule with Christ, He is seeking, training and testing those who might qualify. Believing without seeing is one of the qualifications that man is being tested on. To reign with Christ, one must share His character, His selflessness, His unswerving loyalty to and trust of His Father. Those not interested in this destiny, and therefore unable to pass the course, need not apply. God has made every person potentially capable of meeting the qualifications (with His help, of course! No one can do it any other way). The spiritual desire that seeks first the kingdom of God, and the integrity that seeks His righteousness, do not seem to be what most people choose as their primary pursuits in life. This deficiency would not be remedied by God's merely making Himself more obvious (as if He could be more obvious!). Some people just don't want God, or what He is offering, on His terms.
Hello old friend, I generally agree with the above, but... Even men whom God spoke to thereafter still had to exercise faith and obedience. So the character traits you speak of still would have to be practiced even if God was more evident. Then I would have to ask - are there men in the world that will be lost that could have been saved if they had more "evidence?" Or is "evidence" completely irrelevant to the process?
Thanks to the human heart by which we live, thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears, To me the meanest flower that blows can give thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears. Wordsworth

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by steve » Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:32 am

Then I would have to ask - are there men in the world that will be lost that could have been saved if they had more "evidence?"
God wants all men saved more than most men want themselves to be saved. But "saved" doesn't just mean "in heaven." He wants men genuinely saved from their own sinfulness. Men who desire this will seek and find God, even if He had left us considerably less evidence than He has. Others will ultimately spurn God even if He speaks intelligibly to them through the mouth of a donkey and causes a sword-bearing angel to appear before them. Go figure.

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by steve » Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:40 am

By the way, Jim, we've missed you around here. Thanks for dropping in again! I'd love to have you call the show again. The older listeners miss you!

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by seer » Thu Oct 10, 2013 11:20 am

steve wrote:By the way, Jim, we've missed you around here. Thanks for dropping in again! I'd love to have you call the show again. The older listeners miss you!
Yes Steve, I miss calling in too. I just get home so late from work. But I am happy to have the over time.
Thanks to the human heart by which we live, thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears, To me the meanest flower that blows can give thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears. Wordsworth

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by seer » Thu Oct 10, 2013 11:22 am

steve wrote:
Then I would have to ask - are there men in the world that will be lost that could have been saved if they had more "evidence?"
God wants all men saved more than most men want themselves to be saved. But "saved" doesn't just mean "in heaven." He wants men genuinely saved from their own sinfulness. Men who desire this will seek and find God, even if He had left us considerably less evidence than He has. Others will ultimately spurn God even if He speaks intelligibly to them through the mouth of a donkey and causes a sword-bearing angel to appear before them. Go figure.
Yes, I find the response to the rich man quite chilling. That even if one came back from the dead his brothers still would not listen.
Thanks to the human heart by which we live, thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears, To me the meanest flower that blows can give thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears. Wordsworth

nancyer

Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by nancyer » Mon Jul 07, 2014 10:17 pm

seer wrote:
steve wrote:A few thoughts...
Then I would have to ask - are there men in the world that will be lost that could have been saved if they had more "evidence?" Or is "evidence" completely irrelevant to the process?
This then begs the question, what would the "evidence" be? I've asked my former husband what it would take for him to believe in God, that God is here and loves us, what kind of proof would he need. (He basically believes God had something to do with creating man, probably, and He's somewhere out there, doing "God stuff", not paying any attention to us) He says he doesn't know what that would be. Sadly, I'm not sure there could ever be proof enough for him. b]

nancyer

Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by nancyer » Wed Jun 17, 2015 6:50 pm

A few thoughts...
2. If being born was only about becoming aware that there is a God, and then dying and going to heaven, then it seems as if God should have adopted the policy you suggest. However, God actually has a purpose that many people (including Christians) often fail to grasp, which is not simply about dragging as many people to heaven as possible (the dragnet in the parable brought in far more fish than the fisherman cared to keep).

Since God is recruiting co-heirs to rule with Christ, He is seeking, training and testing those who might qualify. Believing without seeing is one of the qualifications that man is being tested on. To reign with Christ, one must share His character, His selflessness, His unswerving loyalty to and trust of His Father. Those not interested in this destiny, and therefore unable to pass the course, need not apply. God has made every person potentially capable of meeting the qualifications (with His help, of course! No one can do it any other way). The spiritual desire that seeks first the kingdom of God, and the integrity that seeks His righteousness, do not seem to be what most people choose as their primary pursuits in life. This deficiency would not be remedied by God's merely making Himself more obvious (as if He could be more obvious!). Some people just don't want God, or what He is offering, on His terms.
Steve, I think it is a brilliant explanation and answer to those who question God's existence or the fact that He still speaks to us. I know I myself have wondered why and prayed for God to speak to me, put something on my heart, "give me a sign" for lack of a better definition. Thank you.

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Re: Is There Any Good Reason...

Post by dizerner » Wed Jun 17, 2015 7:31 pm

God only gives us one simple and short explanation for the existence of evil and suffering, for his hidden face and the veil of darkness on the peoples of the world:

An enemy has done this. — Jesus Christ, circa 32 A.D.

If we don't realize we are born into a war of none of our own choosing, we won't recognize our enemy or the training and weapons afforded to us.
~ Classical Arminian Christian Mystic ~

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