Open question about Romans 9-11

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Sean
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by Sean » Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:10 am

Paidion wrote:It is obvious that you have studied Rom 9, 10, and 11, Sean. Thank you for your questions concerning the standard Calvinist explanation of Romans 8:28-9:24 . Good job!

I doubt that any Calvinist can give a satisfrying explanation for his stance.
Thanks! 8-)
He will not fail nor be discouraged till He has established justice in the earth. (Isaiah 42:4)

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seer
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by seer » Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:23 am

Interesting. They can become elect, if they believe. A choice make.
Of course the become elect when they believe, the question is whose choice is it to become elect - God's or ours.
Hmmm. Your reading Ephesians 2 into this. If we were all children of wrath then why does Paul say God made two groups: vessels of wrath and vessels of honor. That is what I'm wondering about. I'm not asking about Ephesians 2.
That's the point Sean. By nature we are vessels of wrath, objects of wrath. And God has kindly decided to rescue some of us, and make us vessels of mercy. I don't see why that is so hard to understand.
You don't seem to be following my argument. If Romans 9 is a call only to the elect then why does Paul try to save some of the non-elect?

So Jim. Who is this call for? You can't have your cake and eat it too. I thought God only saves the elect (the "Jacob" types, the only ones God calls, remember?)
First Sean. It is clear that the "call" is not universal. You avoided this point. And it is clear that the "call" is not based on anything we have done - good or bad. Second, Paul does not know who the elect are or are not. But certainly God does - or don't you believe that God knows who the elect are? All Paul is saying is that those who are presently blinded may in fact become elect if God so chooses to graft them in again. So we are back to chapter 9 - whose choice is it?
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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darinhouston
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by darinhouston » Fri Sep 19, 2008 11:57 am

seer wrote: Of course the become elect when they believe, the question is whose choice is it to become elect - God's or ours.
I'm having trouble following your position, Jim - I thought you believed that an individual man was either "elect" or "non-elect" from all eternity, that the choice (if any) was God's from eternity past, and that it was unalterable (by the man or otherwise). Here, you seem to take the position that a man's individual election can change, and that at the time of Paul's writing, there were some who were not in the "elect" that would later become "elect" (through either their own or God's choice -- by the way, I don't think that point matters for the present argument, though it's a good follow-on point once this one is resolved).

To clarify your position, do you believe that there are some people who either existed at the time of Paul's writing or who would exist at a later time who were not then elect who could later become elect (not re: Paul's knowledge of their election, but re: their actual membership in the "elect")?

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seer
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by seer » Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:08 pm

darinhouston wrote:
seer wrote:
To clarify your position, do you believe that there are some people who either existed at the time of Paul's writing or who would exist at a later time who were not then elect who could later become elect (not re: Paul's knowledge of their election, but re: their actual membership in the "elect")?
My position is that no man becomes elect until he actually repends and believes. Did God from all eternity know who would repent and believe? Of course, we all agree with that - unless you hold to the heresy of open theism. And I would say He not only knew but chose from all eternity. Like I said, we are by nature children of wrath, until we are regenerated...

The only question is - how do we become a vessel of mercy - and Romans nine answers that - the "call" is based on God's choice alone.
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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Sean
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by Sean » Sat Sep 20, 2008 11:14 pm

seer wrote: My position is that no man becomes elect until he actually repends and believes.
1Peter 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.

Does Peter disagree with you? Since you equate election with repentance and belief, it is interesting that Peter says "elect according to the foreknowledge of God" What is it that God would "know beforehand" except faith? It seems our status as "elect" is before the time we believe. Because God knows this in advance.
He will not fail nor be discouraged till He has established justice in the earth. (Isaiah 42:4)

Troy
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by Troy » Sat Sep 20, 2008 11:55 pm

I asked a friend of mine who goes godrulz what he thought of this verse. This is what he had to say:
  • Peter is speaking to those who have already freely responded. They are now part of the corporate elect. The group was foreknown and predestined, but individuals are freely added later, become part of this group, and are known as part of the elect when they respond (not from before they were born). In OT, God does not determine who is saved or lost before they are born (Calvin's double predestination). In OT, God foreknows that there will be a people who respond to Him, but only know which individuals do when they actually do so (not in eternity past before they make the choice). Election is not unconditional; exhaustive definite foreknowledge is not the basis for election; election is corporate, not individual (those who believe become part of the predestined group). God predestines that all who believe will be part of the foreknown group (God will persist until He has a people; it is not necessary nor possible for Him to know which individuals will or will not respond to the gospel until after they are born, hear the message, and make a choice in time).
I must say that I concur, but I am putting this understanding out to be informative for those who are not familiar with the interpretation of those who believe that the future is, to some extent, unsettled.

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seer
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by seer » Sun Sep 21, 2008 4:41 am

Sean wrote:
seer wrote: My position is that no man becomes elect until he actually repends and believes.
1Peter 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.

Does Peter disagree with you? Since you equate election with repentance and belief, it is interesting that Peter says "elect according to the foreknowledge of God" What is it that God would "know beforehand" except faith? It seems our status as "elect" is before the time we believe. Because God knows this in advance.
Sean, I made in clear in my previous posts that God knew the elect from all eternity. What would God know before hand? Those He would choose! But until the actual time of conversion we were under God wrath. And Paul, and the rest of us humans, are blind God's choice - until we see the evidence of conversion.

Again: 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 Him who calls
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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Sean
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by Sean » Sun Sep 21, 2008 6:32 am

seer wrote:
Sean, I made in clear in my previous posts that God knew the elect from all eternity. What would God know before hand? Those He would choose! But until the actual time of conversion we were under God wrath. And Paul, and the rest of us humans, are blind God's choice - until we see the evidence of conversion.
I hear you Jim, but you also said people become elect at the point of salvation. Yet Paul said the "elect obtain it [salvation], the rest were blinded".
I believe what God knows is the faithful. Paul states faith is the condition that determines if someone is saved or not.
seer wrote: Again: 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 Him who calls
I don't see this as the same type of proof text that you do, and I have shown why in this thread. Even the people not called could be saved if they are moved to believe. Read that passage carefully. It says the twins were not yet born (so it's obvious they had not done anything yet). Then it says it's not of works but of God who calls. God doesn't call people to conversion by works. It's by His Spirit. His Spirit regenerates us when we believe.
Romans 9:11 is not speaking about individuals for salvation. It's speaking about God's choice. If this were speaking about individuals, it would contradict itself when it says: Rom 9:12 it was said to her, "THE OLDER SHALL SERVE THE YOUNGER."
This didn't happen with the two men in question. This is speaking of people groups. Paul is making the case that God has yet again chosen a people group. Christ. You must be in Christ to be the chosen people. Christ is God's choice. Just as God chose Jacob over Esau, God chose Jesus over all those who came before Him. God is showing His choice over the lineage of Christ. God brought this about.

Look at this passage:

Rom 9:6 But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel,
Rom 9:7 nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, "IN ISAAC YOUR SEED SHALL BE CALLED."
Rom 9:8 That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.
Rom 9:9 For this is the word of promise: "AT THIS TIME I WILL COME AND SARAH SHALL HAVE A SON."


It's not the children of flesh, it's the children of the promise who are counted as seed [of Abraham]. Verse 9 points to a promise God made about Isaac.

Gen 18:11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and Sarah had passed the age of childbearing.
Gen 18:12 Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, "After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?"
Gen 18:13 And the LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh, saying, 'Shall I surely bear a child, since I am old?'
Gen 18:14 Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son."


God made a promise. Even though it was impossible for man, God's choice will stand. But was this a choice for the salvation of Issac? It doesn't seem to be about that at all. It's about God's plan to bring salvation through Jesus.

Paul says this about Abraham and his seed:

Gal 3:14 ...the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, "And to seeds," as of many, but as of one, "AND TO YOUR SEED," who is Christ.
Gal 3:29 And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.


While the "seed" is plural, it is speaking about Christ. Jesus is the ultimate choice of God, God manifested in the flesh. All who come to Christ share in His elect status and share in all that is His (1 Pet 2:6). These are the true seed. Paul in Romans 9 is showing that just as God's choice was made plain in the OT, it is also being made plain in the NT. God's choice now is Jesus. Jews incorrectly assumed being a child of Abraham made them a child of God, but they thought this was in the flesh. This is not correct. Later the law and the workings of the law made some Jews think this made them children of God. Paul states the condition of faith as the determining factor (not law) of why there are Jews who were not saved (Rom 9:30-33). So we have a different interpretation of Romans 9. ;)
He will not fail nor be discouraged till He has established justice in the earth. (Isaiah 42:4)

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seer
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by seer » Sun Sep 21, 2008 7:34 am

Hey Sean, I'm going to let this slide for now. I think we both made our points. Besides I'm rather busy debating some atheists in New Zealand. Why don't you and others here join me? I post there as James...

Peace, Brother...

http://openparachute.wordpress.com/
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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Sean
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Re: Open question about Romans 9-11

Post by Sean » Mon Sep 22, 2008 3:22 am

seer wrote:Hey Sean, I'm going to let this slide for now. I think we both made our points. Besides I'm rather busy debating some atheists in New Zealand. Why don't you and others here join me? I post there as James...

Peace, Brother...

http://openparachute.wordpress.com/
That's cool. Have fun debating the atheists. I'm not sure how I can convince and atheist that there is a personal God who sent His Son for us, and I'm an Arminian! :shock:

I spent many years bouncing between atheist and agnostic. All I can say is that when I really wanted to know the truth and read the bible seeking truth I found it. I don't think anyone can be convinced if they don't really want to know.

Good luck! 8-)
He will not fail nor be discouraged till He has established justice in the earth. (Isaiah 42:4)

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