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Free will and the early church

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  • Free will and the early church

    I have a question about free will which I haven't seen asked before though I'm sure someone in the past 2000 years has done so. I don't claim this disproves anything but just want to hear what people have to say.

    Was it possible that in the earliest days of the church immediately following the Ascension for most people who came to believe as recorded in Acts to instead freely choose not to convert or spread the gospel? If these decisions had led to the early church dying out would that have been "God's will"?
    Last edited by MehdiR; 08-25-2021, 01:46 PM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by MehdiR View Post
    If these decisions had led to the early church dying out would that have been "God's will"?
    no...

    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

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    • #3
      Welcome to TWeb!

      Originally posted by MehdiR View Post
      Was it possible that in the earliest days of the church immediately following the Ascension for most people who came to believe as recorded in Acts to instead freely choose not to convert or spread the gospel? If these decisions had led to the early church dying out would that have been "God's will"?
      I believe that salvation is ultimately due to God's decision, not man's decision (John 1:12-13). God chooses who will believe, and calls them, and those who are called will respond (Rom. 8:30, Acts 13:48). Then acknowledging Christ as Lord means we will obey his command, and spread the gospel (Matthew 28:19-20).

      Blessings,
      Lee
      "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

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      • #4
        God's will is that all come to the faith.

        Scripture Verse: 2 Peter 3:9

        9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

        © Copyright Original Source



        So, the Church dying out would never have been his will.
        "What has the Church gained if it is popular, but there is no conviction, no repentance, no power?" - A.W. Tozer

        "... there are two parties in Washington, the stupid party and the evil party, who occasionally get together and do something both stupid and evil, and this is called bipartisanship." - Everett Dirksen

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        • #5
          Originally posted by MehdiR View Post
          I have a question about free will which I haven't seen asked before though I'm sure someone in the past 2000 years has done so. I don't claim this disproves anything but just want to hear what people have to say.

          Was it possible that in the earliest days of the church immediately following the Ascension for most people who came to believe as recorded in Acts to instead freely choose not to convert or spread the gospel? If these decisions had led to the early church dying out would that have been "God's will"?
          Yes, it was possible.

          As to God's will -- His Commandments express His will, but people break them all the time.
          Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

          Beige Nationalist.

          "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

          Social Justice is usually the opposite of actual justice.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by NorrinRadd View Post
            As to God's will -- His Commandments express His will, but people break them all the time.
            Yet "the law came in to increase the trespass" (Romans 5:20), so God's will is not being frustrated, even when people sin.

            "The LORD has made everything for its purpose,
            even the wicked for the day of trouble." (Proverbs 16:4)

            God's purpose eventually is that people not sin, yet even sin has a purpose in the plan of God:

            "For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all." (Romans 11:32)

            Blessings,
            Lee
            "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Littlejoe View Post
              God's will is that all come to the faith.

              Scripture Verse: 2 Peter 3:9

              9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

              © Copyright Original Source



              So, the Church dying out would never have been his will.
              The "Church" as the embodiment of one overarching belief system did not exist in the mid first century CE. There were isolated groups of adherents to this new cult but there was no uniformity of belief among those adherents.
              "It ain't necessarily so
              The things that you're liable
              To read in the Bible
              It ain't necessarily so
              ."

              Sportin' Life
              Porgy & Bess, DuBose Heyward, George & Ira Gershwin

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MehdiR View Post
                I have a question about free will which I haven't seen asked before though I'm sure someone in the past 2000 years has done so. I don't claim this disproves anything but just want to hear what people have to say.

                Was it possible that in the earliest days of the church immediately following the Ascension for most people who came to believe as recorded in Acts to instead freely choose not to convert or spread the gospel? If these decisions had led to the early church dying out would that have been "God's will"?
                The choice not to spread the gospel existed for individuals.
                The choice not to convert existed for individuals.
                Many actions that have been and are undertaken are contrary to God's will. In the ordinary course God does not choose to impose his will.

                Cohesiveness of the early church before CE70 is implicit in disputes being referred to the Jerusalem elders (apostles, prophets etc).
                sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by tabibito View Post

                  Cohesiveness of the early church before CE70 is implicit in disputes being referred to the Jerusalem elders (apostles, prophets etc).
                  Really? What sources are you citing as evidence?

                  "It ain't necessarily so
                  The things that you're liable
                  To read in the Bible
                  It ain't necessarily so
                  ."

                  Sportin' Life
                  Porgy & Bess, DuBose Heyward, George & Ira Gershwin

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Moderated By: Bill the Cat

                    Since this was DivineOB sock puppetting, this thread is closed. If you'd like to continue discussion, please start a new thread.

                    ***If you wish to take issue with this notice DO NOT do so in this thread.***
                    Contact the forum moderator or an administrator in Private Message or email instead. If you feel you must publicly complain or whine, please take it to the Padded Room unless told otherwise.

                    That's what
                    - She

                    Without a clear-cut definition of sin, morality becomes a mere argument over the best way to train animals
                    - Manya the Holy Szin (The Quintara Marathon)

                    I may not be as old as dirt, but me and dirt are starting to have an awful lot in common
                    Stephen R. Donaldson

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