Our Father Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come: Thy Will be done on earth as it is in heaven. See Matthew 6 verse 9 thru 15.
Let me be bold to contend for a moment with some philosophical confusion. For any present and future religious philosophers and teachers following after John Calvin, with the exclusion of the flood and the deliverance of Noah and his family, I will present arguments that illustrate that there could not have been any preexisting decree or command of God, before scripture or in scripture, concerning any aspect of the will of God, which sees fit to proclaim the total catastrophic failure of His creation of man. John Calvin, who is attributing more to the will of God than what is lawful, writes: "I admit that by the will of God all the sons of Adam fell into that state of wretchedness in which they are now involved;" Book 3, Chapter 23, section 4. "The decree, I admit is dreadful; and yet it is impossible to deny that God foreknow what the end of man was to be before he made him, and foreknew, because he had so ordained by his decree." Book 3, Chapter 23, section 7. On the beginning point, it is certainly possible for the Infinite and timeless God, to foreknow of Adam and Eve's fall into sin, with its consequences of corruption and death to them, as well as their entire prodigy; but because of God's timelessness in infinity, which allows Him to see afar off within our created space-time continuum, God had no need to decree the fall and ruination of mankind! The inevitability of spiritual sin can happen in the free wills of God's created higher creatures, despite the good will of God.
Any such agreement with the supposition that maintains this false doctrine of God's preordained decrees, is the result of the sin of Adam, again falsely placing blame on the Creator, and making Him the author of sin and death. Jesus declares: For Yahweh is the God of the living, and not the god of the dead. The nature of sin is always to bring death, and that defiling nature is an infinite contradiction to the Holy God of the living. The very WORD of Yahweh's Son, Jesus Christ, being in the Person of the Will and Salvation of God on earth, tells us to pray that our Holy Father's Will would be done in earth as it is done in heaven. There should be no question that because of sin, God's perfect Will is not done in the earth as it is done in heaven, other wise why would Jesus teach us to pray in this manner? If on the other hand, God had preordained the fall of man, then how foolish for man to pray that God's will would be done on earth, seeing that God had decreed mankind's failure and defilement in the first place, even before man ever existed. Illogically, because of Calvin's doctrine, we would be praying for our own catastrophic failure that has the Creator, preordaining the whole of mankind to be in the corruption of sin and death, and as John Calvin resolutely pontificates, that all this is for God's own good will and pleasure? "Nor ought it to seem absurd when I (John Calvin) say, that God not only foresaw the fall of the first man, and in him the ruin of his posterity; but also at his own pleasure arranged it." Book 3, Chapter 23, Section 7. To my free thinking mind, this supposition is absolutely absurd; for God has made it abundantly clear in scripture that He has no pleasure in the death of mankind. For thus says the Lord GOD: Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die; and not that he should return from his ways, and live? (Ezekiel 18 verse 23.)
That one choice for return, given by God for the Way of Life, remains for the seeking man to choose within the searching of his own heart. The principle example would be, when God speaking through Jeremiah says to Israel: For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall you call upon Me, and you shall go and pray unto Me, and I will hearken unto you. And you shall seek Me, and find Me, when you shall search for Me with all your heart. Then I will be found of you, says the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity. (Jeremiah 29 verse 11 thru 14.) Although Jeremiah was prophesying about Israel's captivity and God's heart instructions for Israel, nevertheless God's heart remains the same and He knows the heart of every person, Jew or Gentile. The heart of any person seeking after the heart of God, is always the primary issue with God, and God through His WORD and Son, Jesus Christ will always contend for that seeking heart. For the Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2nd Peter 3 verse 9.) Furthermore, in accordance with Calvin's understanding and teachings, his students would have to deduct that God would have had pleasure in sending His only begotten and beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to the cross to be crucified and die, as a sacrifice for the same sins of the world, which according to Calvin, God had so decreed or had previously arranged for His own good pleasure. John Calvin, and the world, has not understood that the Love of God and the Love of the Son, and Their one perfect desire, is to return the children of man back to the Love of the Father's Heart, through the self sacrificing Love of the only begotten Son. We the sons of Adam, fail to understand that our own sins, even as Christians, has separated us from receiving the love and fellowship of God's presence. Also, in seeking to be a good and righteous person, we fail to comprehend that true righteousness, is tied intrinsically to that perfect sacrificing Love of God and His Son, Yeshua (The Salvation of God), and the Lord our Righteousness. Righteousness begins to be established within the heart of a person, who begins to love God above all things. We choose from the familiarity of the flesh of sin, and its self justification, rather than knowing the spiritual Truth in the Heart of God, Who leads us to humility, repentance from sin, and the renewal of a heart after God.
Sin is a destructive force and not a creative force. Although it is true that God created all things of substance, seen and unseen, from the infinite power within Himself, how be it, His Infinite Holy Nature would preclude the possibility for Him to be the author and mastermind of spiritual sin; and it is preposterous to think that the God of the living would have pleasure in spiritual sin's destructive course, bringing death within His own creation. If the opposite were true of God's character will and creative design, then God would also have had pleasure in initiating the angelic insurrections that have taken place against Him directly "thus-making-Him-a-God-of-confusion-and-folly and no less than an accomplice", if not the instigator of the warfare and confusion within the realm of His Majesty. John Calvin, in his fallen humanity, is illogical and unjust in his accusations against Holy, Holy, Holy God, and he has no conception in his writings or actions, of the righteousness of God's perfect Love.
Everything about sin is the antithesis of the Holy Righteous God, for God is declared, by an enlightened and knowing apostle, to be the personification of Love and Light with no shadow of darkness emitted from His Being; (see 1st John 1 verse 5.) and He is long suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2nd Peter 3 verse 9.) Even so, in His eternal righteousness, He remains the Sovereign righteous Judge of the insurrectionist within His universal kingdom. For this is what the Sovereign LORD says to Lucifer the Star of the Morning: "You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, till wickedness was found in you. Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. (For full account see Ezekiel 28 verse 11 thru 19.) With Lucifer's free choice, to initiate the spiritual rebellion against God, we see that spiritual sin had already preexisted within the realm of God, before His creation of man, and certainly the alien nature of sin did not come forth from a defiling decree of God, for God is the purity of LOVE. Neither was the corruption of sin created or decreed in Lucifer, for when God created him, Lucifer was made the model of perfection, and was blameless from the moment of his beginning. The scriptures in Ezekiel and (Isaiah 14 verse 12 thru 20) provide evidence that Lucifer freely authored his own iniquity within himself, being initiated and then developed within his own free mind, from his lustful and wicked internal desires, which in the end, would separate himself and his followers from God, their Creator. Therefore, says the Creator God in judgment: "I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. All the nations who knew you are appalled at you; you have come to a horrible end, and will be no more". Revelation declares that at a future point in time during the seventh trumpet and the third Woe of judgment that; "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our God and of His Christ and He shall reign forever and ever". In the end, because of the righteous love and obedience of the Son of Man, Who is the Son of God, we are foretold that the perfect Will of the God of Love and Eternal Light, will reign in the earth for ever and ever.
When reviewing the Genesis account of the creation of Adam, we see that God formed Adam out of the base elements of His creation, which in the beginning, all came forth from the pure and Holy Substance of the Spiritual Heart of God's Holy Being. With the earthly form of man, God then created through His Holy Word and the Spirit of His Holy Breath, the soul and the very life within Adam's being. Adam was created to be holy unto God, as a devoted son made in Elohim's image and likeness. It was the holiness of the breath of God, the Holy Spirit, the Ruach HaKadosh, within Adam that would sustain his life of holiness. Instead of Adam and his wife Eve remaining in the perfect love of God, they followed after Lucifer's enticements' by succumbing to the imaginations of their own free mind and heart, turning away from the Love and Light of the God of all life, and thereby reaping their own corruption in death, as well as that of their prodigy.
And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repented Me that I have made them. But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. Genesis 6 verse 5 thru 8.
From the Genesis 6 Scripture account, we can see two antagonistic contradictions to John Calvin's assertions of divine decree, and God's pleasure in man's sinful failures. First, this scripture says that at that time, every imagination of the thoughts of man was continually evil. God did not initiate through decree or in any way impose those imaginations and thoughts in the heart of man, but the scripture implies that those imaginations and thoughts came from the free thoughts of man's own heart and lusts. There comes a time when God will no longer contend for the heart of man, but will give them over to the lust of their own flesh, thus God allowing for their hardening through sin, of their own impenitent and reprobate hearts. (See Romans 1 verse 18 thru 32.) Secondly, God was grieved within His own heart at the wickedness of sin existing within the hearts of His creation of thankless mankind. Except for the faith of Noah and his family, there came that time, when the sowing of the seed of corruption in man, by Lucifer, was so complete that apparently to God, there were no redeeming factors left in the heart of mankind.
Now, with the ability in my free mind to weigh and to choose thoughts, I believe that before the relative creation of all things, the Infinite God, Who transcends created space-time as we know it, in His wisdom and foresight across His relative time, understood all things perfectly. God, when weighing the full nature of the corruption and insurrection that sin would bring against His sovereignty and His kingdom, then comparing it's potential destructive power to the perfect law of liberty, which is totally encompassed within Him and within His Love, and the merciful provisions provided in His New Covenant in the Blood of Jesus, allowed His creatures free choice of the thoughts of the mind. God is intrinsically Sovereign by His infinite might and right to judge His very own creation, but the essence of God, is pure Love and pure Light with no shadow of turning within His knowledge, within His Wisdom or within His ultimate intentions for His creation, which would in any wise contradict His Essence of infinite Holiness. It is an infinite impossibility for the God of all holiness to connive with sin or arrange for sin in His creatures. In the Infinite's omniscience and clarity of eternal thought, He created all of His thoughtful beings with complete freedom to choose between that which would give them perfect liberty, within the law of Love: And He also allowed room in His elevated creatures, for an open choice for the thought for sin. This freedom of choice God allows, in spite of His timeless foreknowledge, in knowing of sin's counter productive influence, with sin's sole objective of self-will, being spiritually imposed in the minds of His creatures. The God of the Living did not decree failure in any of His created higher beings, but the possibility of failure, and then bondage through sin's willfulness, is a decision that His creature's can choose, motivated by their own selfish desires. God is not the god of the dead, but the God of the living: you therefore do greatly err, for all live unto and through Him. ( Mark 12 verse 26 thru 27.) Thanks be to our God of Life that in His foreknowledge, which exists in unison within all the expanse of time, and because of His supreme love and mercy, He made provisions within His Infinite Word, for the forgiveness of man's rebellion, caused through the bondages of sin. For indeed, God's Infinite Word of Love and Grace came in the flesh of man, as Jesus Christ (Yeshua ha Machiach), to die and pay the full penalty of sin through His Body and Blood, thereby eliminating sin's enforced separation of man from Holy God. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting Life. (John 3 verse 16.) These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: But be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. In context John 16 verse 32 thru 33.
Think about it; there are only two absolute choices that really matter: Sin's rebellion with separation from God, leading to eternal death; or Life within the perfect liberty of God's Love and the redemptive Grace in Jesus Christ. God's Will is that of the God of the Living, and not the god of the dead. All choices and decisions of man, fall in the unsettled shades of grey between these two diametrically opposing choices. Because of this lack of insight in the spirit, even at our very best we will continually need the grace of God for proper discernment. The perfection of God's Love is not in the flesh of mankind, but in the Spirit of His Grace. Therefore, God absolutely desires to extend complete amnesty for all past sins, to all who will come in repentance to Him through Jesus Christ (Yeshua Messiah). Then, it is through our faith in Jesus Christ's perfect sacrifice of Love that God's New Covenant Word, will provide the necessary spiritual communal food for continued Life, healing mercy and spiritual growth in Him, while we occupy these earthen bodies.
Make it your free choice.
Turn from your destructive ways.
Say to them, `As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Isreal, (and of uncircumcised hearts)?' Ezekiel 33 verse 11. (NIV.)
Nevertheless, God's solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: "The Lord knows those who are His," and, "Everyone who confesses the Name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness." 2nd Timothy 2 verse 19.(NIV.)
and accept God's provision of Life in Jesus Christ.
If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of Truth; Whom the world cannot receive, because it sees Him not, neither knows Him: but you know Him; for He dwells with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world sees Me no more; but you see Me: Because I live, you shall live also. At that day you shall know that I AM in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. He that hath My commandments, and keeps them, he it is that loves Me: And he that loves Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him. John 14 verse 15 thru 21.
The following section Lamentations continues to illustrate the depths of sin and man's helplessness to its onslaught.
Robert Glenn Pratten