From the Pastor's Desk
Page 1 2 3 4   Entries 1-5 of 19
February 9, 2018, 12:00 AM

Freewill of Man Is God's Choice


                                                       

 (SERIES Part 1 — 12/31/17)

  • Freewill
  •  Is God really good?
  • If God can, why doesn’t He?
  • Choices and Consequences 
  • How to Make Good Choices
  • Where is God When I Hurt?
  • Does God Really Care?
  • What about Suffering and Evil? 
  • Does It Really Matter What I Do?
  • How Will This All End?

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-TkQgBvqls                                             

When something bad happens, do not think or assume God did it.  When God created humankind as well as the angels, He gave them FREEWILL.     FREEWILL means God has given us the responsibility and ability to choose.                                

FREEWILL means God chooses NOT to override or remove the freewill of man. We see this theme throughout the Scriptures; God has given humankind as well as the host of heaven freewill.

God gives commands for the good of ALL his created ones.  Ignorance of God’s Commands does not exempt of consequences!  In God’s commands we find the path of true life and directions for our ultimate good.

This is not to say that God never sets limits. The teaching of man’s freewill does not mean that God’s will shall not prevail; by the Scripture, we know it will.  

This topic of “FREEWILL OF MAN” is worth exploring from a Scriptural point of view.

In heaven, even before God created humankind, there was freewill.

Sin started with Satan when he rebelled against God.  The once beautiful Lucifer was given FREEWILL along with the angels God had created. Lucifer/Satan/Serpent/Devil (in name), lifted himself in pride against God.                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Satan persuaded or deceived one third of the angels and they all rebelled against God and were all (1/3 total) cast out of heaven and judged by God. WE refer to these as the “fallen angels.”

God cast them out from Heaven!                                                                                                                                                                                                   

God dealt with the sin of Satan and the angels.  Sin always has to be dealt with.  (Jesus said, Luke 10:18  And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. Revelation 12:7-9  Then there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and his angels.  8 And the dragon lost the battle, and he and his angels were forced out of heaven.  9 This great dragon-- the ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world-- was thrown down to the earth with all his angels.(ALSO Isaiah 14:12-15  "How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth, you who destroyed the nations of the world.  13 For you said to yourself, 'I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God's stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north.  14 I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.'  15 Instead, you will be brought down to the place of the dead, down to its lowest depths.)   

God created a perfect and beautiful world. God created a perfect man Adam and a perfect woman Eve.  He made the heavens and the earth and all the planets. Everything that was made has been made by God. God made a perfect world and a perfect heaven. Genesis 1:31   And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

God also gave Adam and Eve FREEWILL and with that He also gave them ONE command. God told them what the boundaries were. He explained the consequence of their potential disobedience. Let’s explore this from the beginning of Scriptural account.

God gave Adam and Eve FREEWILL with instructions and told them of consequences if they disobeyed.

Genesis 3:1 - 4:1  NLT  The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the LORD God had made. One day he asked the woman, "Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?"  2 "Of course we may eat fruit from the trees in the garden," the woman replied.  3 "It's only the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden that we are not allowed to eat. God said, 'You must not eat it or even touch it; if you do, you will die.'"  4 "You won't die!" the serpent replied to the woman.  5 "God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil." 

6 The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too.  7 At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves.  8 When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the LORD God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the LORD God among the trees.  9 Then the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?"  10 He replied, "I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked."  11 "Who told you that you were naked?" the LORD God asked. "Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?"  12 The man replied, "It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it."  13 Then the LORD God asked the woman, "What have you done?" "The serpent deceived me," she replied. "That's why I ate it."  14 Then the LORD God said to the serpent, "Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all animals, domestic and wild. You will crawl on your belly, groveling in the dust as long as you live.  15 And I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel."  16 Then he said to the woman, "I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you. "  17 And to the man he said, "Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat, the ground is cursed because of you. All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.  18 It will grow thorns and thistles for you, though you will eat of its grains.  19 By the sweat of your brow will you have food to eat until you return to the ground from which you were made. For you were made from dust, and to dust you will return."  20 Then the man-- Adam-- named his wife Eve, because she would be the mother of all who live.  21 And the LORD God made clothing from animal skins for Adam and his wife.  22 Then the LORD God said, "Look, the human beings have become like us, knowing both good and evil. What if they reach out, take fruit from the tree of life, and eat it? Then they will live forever!"  23 So the LORD God banished them from the Garden of Eden, and he sent Adam out to cultivate the ground from which he had been made.  24 After sending them out, the LORD God stationed mighty cherubim to the east of the Garden of Eden. And he placed a flaming sword that flashed back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life. 

In FREEWILL there are voices that influence and try to persuade us:

1. God’s Voice

2. The Voice of our own Flesh or Man

3. The Voice of Satan

 

  • Whose voice do you believe?
  • What you believe affects what you do.  
  • What you do brings consequences.
  • Your belief, behavior and consequences affect you, your world and others.

Would you identify which voice is God’s voice, Satan’s voice or the voice of your flesh?

Identifying the voice we are hearing is a challenge for all of us sometimes. “My people are destroyed because of the lack of knowledge...” (Hosea 4:6)

Satan is a schemer/deceiver/liar!    

Paul warned Christians at Corinth about Satan trying to get the advantage over them by SCHEMING against them and convincing them to withhold forgiveness from an offender (2 Cor.2:10-11). Paul also warns Christians in the Ephesus church to the ARMED with the WORD and FAITH so that they can quench the fiery darts of the wicked…

WE DO HAVE A CHOICE!

Ephesians 6:13-18  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.  14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;  15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.  17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:  18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

Through God's Word and his Spirit, we can identify and fight against the wrong voices we hear. NLT 2 Timothy 2:15 Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.

God’s Word can help us see clearly so that we can make good choices!                                                                                                                         

Psalm 119:104-105   Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.  Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

WE ALL HEAR VOICES! The voice of our flesh/conscience. God’s Voice and Satan’s voice.

Make no mistake about it, we are in a tug-of-war! Even the believer sometimes hears these voices and we have freewill and we have the POWER TO CHOOSE rightly because God’s Spirit is within us through Christ Jesus!   Romans 7:24 - 8:2  Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?  25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God's law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.  NLT Romans 8:1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.  2 And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.

As long as we are on this earth in this mortal body, we have to contend with the flesh and the devil trying to pull us into a wrong direction. However we can choose rightly!

The only sure way we will be able to choose rightly is:

1.Know God’s Word
2. Have God’s Spirit Within
3. Live A Surrendered Life

In doing this we will arm ourselves with the choose to be winners! Our perspective, mind and attitude is part of ARMING yourself against the schemes and trickery of the devil.

NLT 1 Peter 4:1 So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin.

Our Choices Will Have Consequences!  We can make the choice but we cannot choose the consequences of the choice. We can trust God with wisdom to make best choices for ourselves and those we love. Make good choices for yourself, your family, neighbors, others and the future. Your choices will have a ripple affect!

VIDEO: (Ripple Effect) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_j14PP5wlmk

Our choices will affect others Too! Good or Bad.

We are responsible for our choices and yes for much of the consequences. As in earth so in heaven; FREEWILL was given but consequences and results are always part of freewill for choices.

We cannot do anything about the consequences were born in to but we can affect change and good beginning right now.

God did not get what He wanted from Adam and Eve. He wanted perfection for them!

Adam and Eve made the choice and brought sin and its consequences on them and all their offspring; we are all their offspring! ( Adam and Eve’s choice and disobedience/sin brought the consequences of being driven from the tree of life. Hence we live in a world of and sin, sickness and death that began the moment they ate the forbidden fruit.)

God made a choice that day too.   He had compassion and his heart breaks for the pain, tragedies and horrific incidents that affect humankind. God made a choice to come and pay our sin debt and give us eternal life. Also he enables us with the truth/Scripture and the Holy Spirit to guide us so that we can make right choices that will bring positive changes in lives and in our world.

You can make a choice today that will affect the rest of your life. You can make the world a better place by your choices, decisions and lifestyle.

1.Admit that you have sinned.
2.Confess and Repent.
3.Be Baptized.
4.Ask for forgiveness
4.Study the Scriptures
5.Commit to the church
6.Tell others the Good News of God

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                          


Page 1 2 3 4   Entries 1-5 of 19