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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.
Sue D.

The character / attributes of God

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This is the first time I've started a topic thread.  

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God created......"  He's our creator.  

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that who so ever believeth in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." 

 

Feel free to continue.  

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Thread has been relocated to the "God" subforum.

 

God bless,

William

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Thanks for the information :classic_smile:  William -- this probably isn't the correct place, either, but how do I empty my messages.  Thanks   

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I can't cope with the thought of meeting God, even though he is and has been the prime comfort and protection for me.

How can anyone stand in his presence?

It's easy to discuss God at a distance, it can go on for hours, but knowing he is not far off at any time or place, causes me to remain silent.

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7 hours ago, Pillar said:

I can't cope with the thought of meeting God, even though he is and has been the prime comfort and protection for me.

How can anyone stand in his presence?

It's easy to discuss God at a distance, it can go on for hours, but knowing he is not far off at any time or place, causes me to remain silent.

Hebrews 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  (Heb 4:14-16 NKJ)

 

Without Christ Jesus we cannot stand in the presence, with Jesus Christ we do stand in his presence (Rom 5:2) and we address him with confidence and boldness - when faith becomes sight that will still be the same.

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13 hours ago, Sue D. said:

This is the first time I've started a topic thread.  

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God created......"  He's our creator.  

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that who so ever believeth in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." 

 

Feel free to continue.  

awesome thread topic - thanks for starting this thread

 

we need to know the character of our God for the quality of our own life as per Daniel 11:32

 

the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever - 1 Chronicles 16:34

 

the Lord is compassionate and slow to anger - Exodus 34:6

 

God is love - 1 John 4:8

 

God loved so much He sent Jesus - John 3:16

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11 hours ago, Pillar said:

I can't cope with the thought of meeting God, even though he is and has been the prime comfort and protection for me.

How can anyone stand in his presence?

It's easy to discuss God at a distance, it can go on for hours, but knowing he is not far off at any time or place, causes me to remain silent.

Well -- Scripture says that Everyone will be standing in His presence and acknowledge Him As God. 

I would think that knowing He's not far off at any time or place would be Comforting.  When we have the confidence that He's our loving and just heavenly Father,  that He alone knows what's the very best for us and wants only that For us -- that Nothing can separate us from the love of God -- That would give us wonderful peace.  And Wanting to share that with others. 

It's because Of Christ that we Can know that we're forgiven.  Satan would take our past -- if That is what a person feels badly, unworthy about -- and dangle it in front of us continually -- tell us that Because of That -- that we'll never be worthy of standing before God -- to take all our cares to Him.  That is satan lying to us.  

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  I'm going to share a bit about the history of teh doctrine of God, that is, I will focus on God's attributes.  Hope this helps the discussion.

Many people have trouble with the notion that God can change. This has to do with the fact that the Bible is not a book in metaphysics or systematic theology. It tells us very little about how God is build, so to speak. What we get are snap shots that often conflict. And it's up to us to piece them together if we can. Hence, once the church worked its way into the upper, educated classes, and people were asking the big questions, the early church looked to Hellenic metaphysics and standards of perfection, to enable it to provide a solid metaphysic. Certain predominant schools of Hellenic thought, such as Plato, Aristotle, Parmenides, Zeno, viewed the world of time and change as a big illusion. The truly divine, the "really real," was something wholly immutable, immaterial, simple. The Greeks enshrined the immune and the immutable. Translated into Christianity, this meant God was traditionally defined, in the major theologians, creeds, and confessions, as void of body, parts, passions, compassion, wholly immutable, wholly independent of creation, standing in no need of the world. God was seen as the Passionless Absolute, the Unmoved Mover.

 

Since the 1940's, however, some theologians have challenged this classical model of God. Hence, there is now neo-classical theism. I am a neo-classical or process theologian. We hold that the classical model of God is too lopsided and unrealistic. We view God as a synthesis of both consistency and change. There is what you might call the absolute nature of God, what God always does, that God is always loving, empathic, luring us to greater beauty. And there is the relative nature of God. God as concrete personality, God as continually changing. Being deeply moved and affected by others is also a virtue. God is not aloof, immune, but empathically shares in all the sorrows and joys of all creatures. A wholly immutable or static God is an indifferent God; and who can put any faith in such a Deity? I can't. I need a God who is responsive. I view God and the world as mutually interdependent, and I believe God grows as the world goes.

 

When it comes to the Bible, many passages do speak of God as immutable, true; but around 100 others also speak of God as changing ( e.g., Gen. 6:6, Hosea, 11:8). Malachi 3:5-7 is sometimes seen as a denial that God can change, but actually affirms otherwise. God persists in certain attitudes ("I, the Lord, change not") and in this consistency does not vary. But rather than affirming divine immutability, the passage speaks of divine change. "Return to me, that I might return to you" implies that if we change in a certain direction, God will change in an appropriate way. In process theology, God is not deflected from a commitment to seek the greatest beauty in all situations; but to promote the greatest beauty, God must be informed by the feelings of others.

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41 minutes ago, ashkat1 said:

When it comes to the Bible, many passages do speak of God as immutable, true; but around 100 others also speak of God as changing ( e.g., Gen. 6:6, Hosea, 11:8). Malachi 3:5-7 is sometimes seen as a denial that God can change, but actually affirms otherwise.

Lets begin with Genesis 6:6 "And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart."

 

Please demonstrate how God "changed".

 

You suggest that the Bible is not to be read systematically. Can you please define systematic theology and provide reasons why this is not acceptable?

 

Systematic Theology can be summed up in Acts 20:27  "for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God."

 

41 minutes ago, ashkat1 said:

Many people have trouble with the notion that God can change. This has to do with the fact that the Bible is not a book in metaphysics or systematic theology.

 

Perhaps I should have began there? Because if you can't prove that we should not consider the "whole counsel of God" then it seems to me your entire response is built on a false premise. In other words in order to arrive at your conclusions, narrative, or interpretation one must reject the unity of Scripture through a Systematic approach?

 

41 minutes ago, ashkat1 said:

Translated into Christianity, this meant God was traditionally defined, in the major theologians, creeds, and confessions, as void of body, parts, passions, compassion, wholly immutable, wholly independent of creation, standing in no need of the world. God was seen as the Passionless Absolute, the Unmoved Mover.

 

Please provide your references. I'd like to read from which historic Creeds and Confessions you're referring.

 

41 minutes ago, ashkat1 said:

A wholly immutable or static God is an indifferent God; and who can put any faith in such a Deity? I can't. I need a God who is responsive. I view God and the world as mutually interdependent, and I believe God grows as the world goes.

Seems to me you're making a case for projecting your own idea god unto God. If God is immovable (Sovereign, absolute, etc) and He was moved by another force then He is no longer immovable. In other words He is subject to the will of His creature. Seems to me that you wish for man to become the irresistible force, however, you must reject an immovable God and project upon Him your own making in order to establish the will of man (The Devil's doctrine Genesis 3:5), thereby making God subservient to man, a genie in the bottle which serves us our agenda.

 

Before we go into that, lets address my questions put to you. Let's begin with Genesis 6:6 and I'd appreciate you answering the rest of my questions thereafter.

 

God bless,

William

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On 5/4/2018 at 4:46 PM, Sue D. said:

This is the first time I've started a topic thread.  

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God created......"  He's our creator.  

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that who so ever believeth in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." 

 

Feel free to continue.  

Good topic @Sue D.  A few years back, at a wonderful community center I help out at a few x a week, they offered something called "The Alpha Course"  I nicknamed it "Jesus Lite." lol.  The one and ONLY characteristic of God they referred to was "Love"-NOTHING else such as He is Just, Jealous, can get Angry (righteously so) and all of His other Awesome attributes...well, I only attended because the director of this center asked me to.  Then she asked myself and a few more volunteers if we would like to lead the next Alpha class...of course I declined and told her, sorry-I have WAY too many "opinions", just being in that small group, I felt I could not say what I believed as I got the hairy eyeball from several in the class whenever I spoke using scripture-they did not know the bible, nobody's feeling could be hurt as we were to respect each others beliefs...really?   Kind of reminds me of how they say "every kid is a winner, they ALL get the prize"!  Bunk.

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41 minutes ago, Submission1 said:

Then she asked myself and a few more volunteers if we would like to lead the next Alpha class...of course I declined and told her, sorry-I have WAY too many "opinions", just being in that small group, I felt I could not say what I believed as I got the hairy eyeball from several in the class whenever I spoke using scripture-they did not know the bible,

It sounds as if this class needed a teacher who knows and believes the Bible.

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Yes @theophilus ,  This class is all over England and the U.S. now...the only so called "teacher" we had was on a screen and using his own little booklets.  They barely even spoke the Name Jesus Christ!   The community center is located right behind my own Church and it is...Episcopal , so, they as I can see, are not Sola Scriptura.  I DO happen to filter every thing through the Holy Spirits guiding of the living breathing Word of God.  They see me as leaving my brain at the door before entering my Church...I laugh it off and love them anyhow...they all know where I stand, and some will even ask ME questions-HA!  I answer as I believe God want's me to and leave it alone. 

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