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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.


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About Fastfredy0

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  1. Fastfredy0

    God Created Man/Adam Sin-ful

    I assume the you are implying that no evil existed at the time that God stated "it was very good". This may not be the case. Consider: Since we derive our very concept and definition of goodness from God, to accuse him of evil would be to say that good is evil, which is a contradiction. Therefore, men cannot say, "Because God is good (according to our false standard of goodness), he must not and would not do this or that." Instead, we must say, "Because God is good (according to his own standard of good, which is the only true standard of good), if He does this or that, then it must be good." Thus if God has decreed and caused evil, then while evil is evil, it must be good that he has decreed and caused evil. R.C. Sproul stated: "it must be good that evil exists, because God sovereignly, providentially ordains only what is good. In terms of His eternal purpose, God has esteemed it good that evil should be allowed to happen in this world." R.C. Sproul paraphrase: "Evil is evil; and good is good; and evil is never good; yet it is good the evil exists, otherwise God would not have allowed it."
  2. Fastfredy0

    Is Christ's Resurrection part of what saves us?

    Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology ... it's on my kindle and says page 380 and part of the section title: "4. SHould We Pray to Jesus and the Holy Spirit" of Chapter 18 entitled "Prayer"
  3. Fastfredy0

    R.C. Sproul on infant baptism.

    MacAuther and Sproul debated infant baptism:
  4. Fastfredy0

    Is Christ's Resurrection part of what saves us?

    I am a big fan of Chafer and have his 8 volume set (4 books). (Irrelevant Aside: He's about the only one that can make sense of Matthew from my biased point of view) I found a commentator that thinks you can also pray directly to Jesus or the Spirit. His reasoning follows: · Though there is a clear pattern of prayer directly to God the Father through the Son there are indications that prayer spoken directly to Jesus is also appropriate. The fact that it was Jesus himself who appointed all of the other apostles, suggests that the prayer in Acts 1:24 is addressed to him. The dying Stephen prays “lord Jesus, receive my spirit (Acts 7:59). The prayer “Our Lord, come!” (1 Corinthians 16:22) is addressed to Jesus, as is the prayer in Revelation 22:20b. And Paul also prayed to “the Lord” in 2 Corinthians 12:8 concerning his thorn in the flesh. There is therefore clear enough scriptural warrant to encourage us to pray to the Son. · Though no prayers directly addressed to the Holy Spirit are recorded in the New Testament, there is nothing that would forbid such prayer, for the Holy Spirit, like the Father and Son, is fully God and is worthy of prayer and is powerful to answer our prayers.
  5. Fastfredy0

    Impassibility of God

    Grrr.... dropped my mouse and lost a 1/2 hour of my musings when my unsaved additions vanished as the web page changed. I don't have the patience to repeat the process. Thanks for your musings They're appreciated. This back and forth has me thinking. 🙂 Perhaps my main contention is my issue of using the words "subtract" and "add" when describing an immutable God. Perhaps, if the term manifest was used I would be more comfortable. Example: God chose to manifest his glory by physically displaying in the dimension of time a person with two natures that is fully God. 🙂
  6. Fastfredy0

    Jesus is not God Almighty himself

    It was difficult understand for me. Example: I am not familiar with the term "raped" scripture. Perhaps a personification? (Rape is a word for sexual assault.) Grammer made it difficult to understand. Spelling of 'transloated' which I at first assumed to be "translocated" retarded my comprehension. I was told the authors were inspired and each had their own style and thus it was not technically a dictation. Maybe I am wrong. Maybe it was a dictation in the style of the writer. Because of my lack of education I always have difficulty when God is referred to as YHWH and other abbreviations. Again, that is my limitation that retards my understanding I didn't know what claims you were referring too. Again, maybe that's just me. I don't get it ... I am not sure who the Scribes are ... possibly another term for writers but there is a capital on Scribes so I suppose it has a formal definition of which I am unaware. I don't know what "Self Interpreting" that means. I asked two university educated co-workers if they knew what "Self Interpreting" meant and neither could hazard a guess. Neither I or the software spell checker know what "Rebewed" means. All this being said, Becky liked what you wrote so it's probably just me.
  7. Fastfredy0

    Impassibility of God

    Gee, difficult questions. You got me thinking (something I try to avoid as I am not particularly good at it) Impassibility is a difficult concept and the author I quoted alludes to this. I probably will hit some heresy but I will take a chance and put my feeble thoughts out there. (You will make my brain hurt 😉 ) I would say the human nature was able to suffer and the divine nature cannot suffer or at least not as we do. For example, the divine nature cannot die (which is a form of suffering) and obviously the human nature can die. Similarly, I would submit that the 'human nature' of Christ is the nature than can have sympathy and that can learn(Matthew 24:36; John 11:35 Jesus wept); whereas the divine nature would not be sympathetic as pointed out by the article I posted or at least not sympathetic in the way humans experience it. I don't think the divine nature could suffer or have sympathy because God is sovereign and His decree (plan) goes entirely to the way He desires so it's not like he is surprised by event (not to mention that the divine nature has no succession of moments; a concept I struggle with. So all things are as if they are currently happening to Him. Can God suffer and be joyful and love at the same time? I suppose he does; but the amount would not change. Is this suffering and love or wrath as we experience it? Surely not.). Also, the divine nature of Christ, being independent, cannot be affected by his creation (satirical aside: unless you are an Arminian and God has to change all His initial plan according to whether you decide to believe or not *mischievous smirk*) Aside: (God is incomprehensible, yet knowable so I may be portraying my incomprehensibility more than my knowability) *weak smile* Hmmm, (brain continues to throb 😉) God does not change and is not made of parts so the 'divine nature' cannot be added to or subtracted from. So,I suppose, the Hypostatic Union is neither an "addition" or "subtraction" to the divine nature. I can't answer your pre-incarnate question as I don't know what specific issues you refer to. (Aside: having two natures and being one person is not a easy concept for me ... i.e. This Jesus is a complicate being) Jesus has two natures which suggests the natures can be distinct. Thus the 'all knowing' divine nature and yet Jesus can say that only the Father knows the time of Christ's 2nd advent. (Matthew 24:36 “But of that [exact] day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son [in His humanity], but the Father alone. AMP) Sorry, I probably didn't answer your query. His ways are not our ways so. I hesitate to use the pejorative "cheapen". Man cannot inflict pain on the divine nature or change it's plan or teach it. The divine nature cannot be added to or subtracted from; it is not made of parts. Just as the divine nature is omnipresent, the human nature of Christ is not for if it could it would not be a 'human' nature. The human nature can feel pain and cry for Lazarus, the divine nature of God does not (in my opinion) have emotions in the same way that we do; thus, I would go along with the article. All this being said, my finite mind is still grovelling to better understand Him and His attributes. I am sure He is laughing at me right now in an anthropomorphic way. Maybe the human nature of Christ just learned about my petty grovelling and is giggling as I type assuming the divine nature thinks my meanderings are worth mentioning to the human nature) Maybe your point is that Jesus is God (agreed). But some of the features of Jesus contradict the definition of God. (God is spirit, Jesus is not; God is all knowing, Jesus is not; God doesn't get tired, Jesus does) Seems there will always be some complexity that is beyond me if I try to go deeply into the metaphysics of it all. My apologies if I have committed a heresy (or two). 😉 ... and for my meanderings ... you got me thinking, thx.
  8. Fastfredy0

    Impassibility of God

    Impassibility of God ... I found this interesting Vincent Cheung: The immutability of God implies the IMPASSIBILITY of God. This means that God is without "passions" – emotions or feelings. Less thoughtful believers protest against the doctrine, since they misapply biblical passages that seem to describe a God who experiences emotions such as grief, joy, and wrath (Psalm 78:40; Isaiah 62:5; Revelation 19:15). Passages that appear to ascribe emotions to God are anthropopathic. The view that God experiences emotions like men appear to entail a number of contradictions: A man may become angry against his will in the sense that he does not choose to become angry, and he does not choose to experience whatever causes the anger, but that the "trigger" incites this emotion in him against his preference. This applies to human experiences of joy, fear, grief, and so on. However, this cannot be true with God even if he were to experience emotions, because such lack of self-control contradicts his omniscience, sovereignty (He controls all events), and immutability (He is not merry one moment and sad another for God is eternal; He has no succession of moments). Since God is omniscient, he cannot be surprised, and this at least eliminates certain ways of experiencing emotions. Perhaps the reply is that all facts are simultaneously present to God, so that the insult that angers him is always happening "now." But this would imply that God must be angry about this one insult throughout eternity, and not just when it happens. If so, then God's emotions would not offer us the kind of interactivity that proponents of divine emotions are after. In any case, suppose something happens that alleviates this anger. Of course, the only way is forgiveness through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. But since God knows Christ's sacrifice just as well as the man's insult, we are at a loss as to whether he is ever angry or not. The mental experiment results in absurdity, because the truth is that God is not like man, because he is not a man. Then, if an action of mine can cause anger in God in a similar way that I can cause anger in a man, then this means that I can cause anger in God by my power. To the degree that he lacks self-control, he is helpless against my efforts to cause anger in him. Likewise, if an action of mine can produce joy in God in a similar way that I can produce joy in a man, then this means that I have the ability to produce joy in God at will. In this manner, I would exercise a significant measure of control over God. But this contradicts his sovereignty [,independence] and immutability. The matter becomes much more complex when we take into account that he knows all the thoughts and actions of his creatures in all of history simultaneously. But it is enough to consider all the billions of people who anger him at any point in time, and the thousands or at least hundreds of people who please him at the same time. How is it possible for him to be angry with two billion people in a sense like man's anger and pleased with two hundred people, also in the human sense, at the same time? If the answer is that God's mind is immense, so that he is not subject to human limitations, then our point is also established. Therefore, some form of divine impassibility is necessary. If God is angered by our sins, it is only because he wills to be angered by them, and not because his mental state is subject to our will or beyond his control. Even if God has emotions, they are under his control, and they will never compromise his divine attributes. And since they cannot compromise the divine attributes, this also means that even if he has emotions, he does not have them in a way that is similar to man. But then we wonder why we would still call them emotions. Thus at least in this sense and to this extent, we must affirm that God is without passions. The dictionary defines "emotion" as "disturbance, excitement; the affective aspect of consciousness; a state of feeling; a psychic and physical reaction (as anger or fear) subjectively experienced as strong feeling and physiologically involving changes that prepare the body for immediate vigorous action." Love too is not an emotion in the Bible, but a volition. His love is uncaused (uninfluenced) as God is independent (Ephesians 1:4). Since God loves His people in Christ, it is not regulated by their fruitfulness, but is the same at all times. Because He loves them in Christ, the Father loves them as Christ. The time will come when His prayer will be answered, “that the world may know that thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved Me” (John 17:23). Jesus experienced emotions, but what can we infer from this? He also experienced hunger and fatigue (Matthew 21:18; Luke 4:2; John 4:6), but this only proves that the Son of God took upon himself a human nature. Just as Jesus in his divine nature did not experience hunger or fatigue, he in his divine nature did not experience emotions. Only his human nature experienced hunger, fatigue, and emotions.
  9. Fastfredy0

    Separating Separator

    The symbol indicates "I liked what you said". No response is necessary.
  10. Fastfredy0

    Is believing a work?

    Definition: A work is an activity involving (1) mental or physical effort done in order to (2) achieve a purpose or result. Thus, if I believe the salvific gospel via my own strength I have: 1) performed a mental effort (considering God's salvific message and coming to a conclusion) 2) achieved a purpose (go to heaven rather than hell for instance). John 1:29 already being stated. Aside: Gee, if I am wrong then I have reason to boast. *sticks his chest out with pride* But then I have problems with 1 Cor. 1:29, 1 Cor. 4:7 & Ephesians 2:9 *Chest repidly deflates*
  11. My dad used 'the strap' (a old waist belt). He would always give an explanation before the physical event and often use the words, "I don't care if you don't love me, but you will respect me". That hurt 'cause I loved him. As an adult I would in jest reminisce and state I didn't mind the belt so much, it was the buckle that hurt. I did something inappropriate in church once so there was what seemed an eternal time delay between sentencing and punishment ... that was a loooong car ride home. I always commenced crying as early as possible in an attempt to diminish the duration of the punishment; I don't think it worked but hard to measure and I didn't want to incur a large sample size to corroborate my theory. Used the same procedures uponto my two munchkins. I thought an open hand was superior to a strap. I did institute the counting to 3; the utterance of which would command a mandatory spanking. I guess they believed me as I never made it to 3 though a couple of times I did say "2 and a half". They did find a loop hole in this procedure. They, for example, might be bickering and they knew they were safe to continue for the time interval between 1 and 2, so the 'yapping' would ensue until the word "two" was voiced; the ensuing dead silence being a conformation of my authority. (lol) Aside: Best to spank them when they are small. One son ended up a high school heavy weight wrestler that went to state finals. Needless to say he could beat the crap out of me so luckily I had instilled 'respect' into him while he was younger. *soft giggle*
  12. Fastfredy0

    Is Bible God's Word?

    Thank you. This gave me a good, early morning chuckle. (Me laugh get you from)
  13. Fastfredy0

    Presbyterian Church of America.jpg

    So, the Presbyterian (PCA) branch is also beginning to lean toward same-sex marriage? My rule of thumb ... the PCA were the "good guys" and the PCUSA were the "bad guys" where I define the "good guys" as being against same-sex marriage and the ordination of gay clergy. In humanistic terms, the "bad guys" seem to be winning.
  14. Fastfredy0

    Just mike requests you prayers

    My strong sympathies are for you and during this time of suffering. I've enjoyed your posts and your love of God.

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