As mentioned in the introduction, I have been been discussing the differences between Calvinism and Provisionalism with a fellow blogger. One particular response grabbed my attention and I am trying to understand his position, by referring to his proof texts and logic.
This is the first portion of his response (in red), along with the corresponding verses he referred to. I shall seek to comment on the verses and find his argument within the verses he has provided.
You are always using Human reasoning instead of scripture. God can change and has to change a person’s will to be saved. Ezekiel 36:26 John 3:3-8 Romans 3:10-12 Psalms 14:1-3 even though you think he can’t interfere with natural man’s will and someone will have to tell me how one person believes the Gospel the true gospel that is and another doesn’t. No freewill advocate can give me an answer. They ignore that question.
The next passage my friend brings to the table to support his theology is Romans 3:10-12. Such a famous set of verses describing the fallen state of man, and the universality of sin in the human race.
as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”
In Romans 1 Paul is describing the Gentile world and their wretchedness in front of God, and in chapter 2, he continues with descriptions of sinfulness. By the time he gets to Romans 3:23, he has made his point. All have sinned, both Gentile and Jew.
Remember the problem that Paul was addressing in the letter to the Romans was the division between Jews and Gentiles within the body, how the Jews were acting self righteous and the Gentiles seemingly took too many liberalities. Division was rampant, and we all know how Paul felt about division!
Could the passage be chosen by Paul in order to level the playing field of the different parties reading it? As we say in Texas, all y’all are sinners. All y’all are in the same bucket!
It doesn’t seem to address the sinners abilities to repent, only that they are sinners through and through, and that they have no power to redeem themselves.
Let me try to explain my understanding this way.
If I am drowning and not able to swim, and going down for the third time, I am as good as dead. (Ephesians 2:5) Yet if a boat comes along and rescues me, I only need to stop my struggle and accept the rescue. In words that sound biblical, I need to repent of my own works and receive the grace of God through the Lord Jesus Christ.
Is there any glory in the rescue for the drowning person? I think not. Next time you see a rescue being reported of on the TV, notice who gets the glory.
My friend, we are all sinners, drowning in the cess pool of our own filth, our disobedience only growing with each day of rejection. There is a Savior that is seeking the lost and desiring to commune with the believer. He is the One who desires to live with us, or better put, for us to live with Him, for there is a difference!
I think I may have wandered from the topic, and would like to remind the reader that the emphasis of this passage is the universality of sin on a fallen world, and that it does not describe one who cannot react to the offer of a good gift given to them.
The next passage my friend refers to for consideration is Psalm 14:1. This is the very passage Paul quoted from in the previous portion. David’s context is different and it may be wise to consider the background upon which this passage was written.
I do hope you will continue with me as I seek to understand the verses he supplies and if the verses he supplied support his argument of fatalism/determinism which he speaks of.
10 thoughts on “Calvin’s Concerns – Comment Response 3 – Romans 3:10-12”
We all know Carl will not answer you DoubleAJWalk so I will answer since I have common sense, I use logic, and I am consistent, unlike the host who cannot seem to understand that the Scripture describes the non regenerate as “DEAD” and that once regenerated God makes him “ALIVE” (he even quotes the Ephesians text but can’t understand it). The answer to your questions, NO NO NO NO and Carl will not answer because he knows very well that the person swimming is not the same as being “DEAD”!
The Scripture describes the unregenerate as “DEAD” and this means they CANNOT reach out for help. God must give life! God must raise the spiritually dead person better known as a spiritual resurrection.
I really hate when Arminian jump out of Scripture to use some man made analogy when the Scriptures themselves are full of analogies. Why doesn’t Carl use the wonderful picture of a person being dead and then being brought to life called a resurrection? Because Carl either can’t understand or he is being deceptive.
So I will enlighten your audience with the truth Carl and use a scriptural passage to shed light upon Gods work of regeneration. The sinner cannot be anymore dead then dead. This means that the spiritually dead unregenerate cannot see, hear, or move (scripture often uses real life people who are blind, deaf, or dead to describe humanities spiritual condition period to regeneration). He is dead! He’s a stiff! The point is that the dead cannot move let alone reach out for help.
Here is a wonderful real life picture taken right out of Scripture. An analogy of regeneration- when a person goes from “DEATH” to “LIFE”.
Lazarus physically died and Jesus comes to the village after he’s been dead for days. Jesus resurrected him from the dead. This is a picture of God spiritually resurrecting a spiritually dead unregenerate persons, one if His elect.
“Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.””
John 11:14-15, 23, 25-26, 43 ESV
Lazarus couldn’t reach his hand out! He couldn’t hear, see or move, he couldn’t respond, he had no choice, no free will, nothing he could do to stop it, he couldn’t refuse it, you get the picture. Lazarus was dead as a door nail. Jesus gave him resurrection life and Lazarus got up and came forward.
Please Carl, tell us where Lazarus reached out his arm to grab for help from Jesus like your swimming man. Where is Jesus’ offer of resurrection life (there isn’t)? Where do we find Jesus pleading with Lazarus to come forth (we don’t find it) ? Was Jesus waiting for Lazarus to respond to Jesus’ call (of course not) ? Show me anywhere in Scripture where it does, I’ll be waiting.
God alone saves, he alone regenerates (resurrects) the dead sinner who is dead in his tread passes and sins. And the spiritually dead sinner can no more reach out for salvation or reach out to be regenerated than Lazarus the dead man can reach out to Jesus to be resurrected. The dead sinner must be MADE ALIVE by God and when God sets a sinner free he is free indeed. This is why Romans 3 says that no spiritually dead person (both Jew and Gentile unregenerate) is righteous, no unregenerate understands, and no one dead in their trespasses and sins seeks after God……..
The non elect have no ability to come to God and as a matter of fact only the elect that the Father gives to the Son will be raised up (resurrected) on the last day. The non elect are DEAD (spiritually speaking) in their trespasses and sins and ““Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.” ““Their feet are swift to shed blood;”” in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known.” “There is no fear of God before their eyes.””
Romans 3:13-18 ESV
Once again Carl, you fail miserably in your exegesis.
Once again, excellent explanation of the scripturally supported condition of natural man.
You explained very well in much detail that natural man, although physically alive, is spiritually dead unable to spiritually swim and call out for help because he doesn’t know he is spiritually dead to the True Gospel and consequently only able to believe a false gospel.
It seems so very evident that natural man inherited the delusion sought in the Garden of Eden “ You will be like God” “knowing”
My Bible says The Father gives The Son redeems The spirit regenerates
The Son reveals to whom He chooses
2 Corinthians 4:6
God shines into the heart the illumination of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ
God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy and man’s will is not the driving force of God’s mercy
All that the Father gives to Jesus will be given eternal life and not be lost
God promised to save the children of promise Matthew 1:21
The children of promise are Unconditionally elected
1 Corinthians 2:14
But a natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he is not able to know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
The natural man is unable to reach for something he thinks is foolishness because he is spiritually dead
The apostle Paul prayed for the salvation of the unsaved Israelites Why? Because God chooses the ones to mercy and the apostle desires their salvation
All natural men, physically alive, while drowning will reach out to the boat passing by for help. That capability is in his nature
Your analogy works for the physically alive; but not for the spiritually dead.
The spiritually dead cannot respond to the truth because they cannot hear it, cannot see it and cannot believe it because they are dead spiritually.
They can only respond to a salvation conditioned on some individual unencumbered effort by the sinner.
The spiritually dead must be made alive by God alone which is what being generated from above by the Sovereign Will of God means to whom He chooses to mercy.
God is the one who shines into the heart the illumination of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ; until then, you are spiritually dead.
When God makes alive, they will know their righteousness is a filthy menstrual cloth and he will respond to God, knowing God, will have mercy on whom He chooses to mercy; as in the case of the tax collector when he said
“God be merciful to me, the sinner”. He knew it was by God’s choosing to mercy that he would be saved; all the while looking completely to The righteousness of God that salvation was conditioned solely on the work and the person of Jesus Christ without any effort from the sinner.
So many assumptions. You make many straw men and demolish them beautifully. Kudos to you.
You will have to break it down and tear it down for me and explain with a little more detail
What assumptions? I am open to listening and interacting with u. Please show me the straw man argument within my comments? Where did I misrepresent you?
Your analogy is not only imperfect (as you say), but it is absolutely absurd. But I will allow your readers to decide.
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Does your analogy of someone drowning fit? Does your analogy of using the rescue boat fit? Are these relevant similes or metaphors? You reference Ephesians 2:5. Does that verse actually support your view?
It is an analogy, imperfect as it is.