A short thought on free will in the Scriptures
Jeremiah 6:15-17 NIV Are they ashamed of their detestable conduct? No, they have no shame at all; they do not even know how to blush. So they will fall among the fallen; they will be brought down when I punish them,” says the LORD. 16 This is what the LORD says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.‘ 17 I appointed watchmen over you and said, ‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’ But you said, ‘We will not listen.’
In our passage are those with detestable conduct refusing to obey God or has God decreed that choice? Is their decision contrary choice/resistance to God’s will or not?
Is God able to communicate perfectly, or must we interpret such Scriptures symbolically?
Does God make genuine invitations to repent and believe? Does God have 2 types of invitation, one understood and the other not understood?
Personally, I believe that God
B1 Tells the truth John 8:45-46, John 16:13/ etc.
B2 Can communicate perfectly Compare Genesis 2:16-17
B3 Does genuinely want all to repent 1 Timothy 2:4, Revelation 22:17, 2 Peter 3:9, Luke 13:3 and 5, etc.
B4 Wants us to interpret His words in a plain, normal sense. If it is allegorical, it will be understood from the context as allegorical. If it is symbolic, it will be understood from the context that it is symbolic.
C1 How can anyone obey God’s rules, unless they understand the rules in their plain, normal sense? Otherwise, their defense would be that God did not make the law clear enough to obey. Compare Mark 10:49, Matthew 4:10, Matthew 6:1, and Colossian 3:9.
C2 How can anyone believe prophesy, unless they understand what is being said? See for example, 2 Samuel 7:12-16 and fulfilled in Matthew 1:1, Luke 1:32-33, Acts 15:15-16, and Hebrews 1:5. Also see Micah 5:2 [Hebrew Bible, verse 1] and fulfilled in Matthew 2:1-6 and John 7:40-43.
C3 Compare 2 Peter 3:19 (Compare versions)
Also, I believe people
B1 Are enabled by God’s decree (prevenient grace), thus we have freed will. Compare Acts 16:14, Acts 2:37, and Jeremiah 32:32-33.
B2 Are able to resist/make contrary choice Compare Acts 7:51, Isaiah 63:10, and Zechariah 7:12.
B3 Will go to hell, it they choose to not believe or ignore it Compare Revelation 21:8, Isaiah 66:4, Acts 18:6, and John 12:48.
A few other verses
B1 Luke 13:3 NLT Not at all! And you will perish, too, unless you repent of your sins and turn to God.
B2 John 5:39-40 NLT You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! 40 Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.
B3 1 Kings 18:21, Proverbs 3:31, Proverbs 1:28-33, Matthew 21:28-32 and many others.
A few articles
B1 An Arminian Account of Free Will by Roger Olson (defining terms among other things)
A Few Thoughts on Jeremiah 6:15-17
Posted by Choco at 11:11 on 12 Dec 20
Labels: Choice, Free will