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What would you like to discuss?  Is there a particular issue that you’ve always wondered about?  Perhaps you’re a theist, and there’s one or two issues you’ve always wrestled with about your faith; maybe you’re an atheist who wonders how in the world theists can possibly believe this one thing (or number of things); perhaps you’re a seeker who has questions that need to be answered before you can make a decision on what you believe.  Whatever your questions are, post them here in the comments section — and I’ll do my best to write entries (from the vantage point of theism) where these questions can be addressed and discussed.  I look forward to hearing your suggestions!

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24 comments

      1. Seth, I just visited the link you provided and read your story. Something that immediately struck me was when you wrote: For roughly a year I studied the people at church and the faith they professed. To me, this was the turning point. Where before you were, as you put it, “closed to religion,” during that year you “allowed” their words and beliefs to penetrate your sub-conscious. Because of this new “openness,” it’s not at all surprising when you say, “God did a work in my heart.” It was that year of exposure that helped you “suddenly” realize you believed.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thanks for the feedback, Nan! Do you, then, believe that I made a mistake by being open-minded? I should have remained completely closed and biased against theism?

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    1. Hi Greg! I don’t post much anymore, so I’ll try my best to answer your question here:

      I’m no seminary student, but I would think that yes, angels have free will. They certainly seemed to have it at the great falling away, when Satan deceived a third of them (Satan himself being an angel who chose to rebel against God, which seems evidence enough for me).

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      1. Hi Seth

        I am no scholar myself but I like how you write, how open you seem, and how you engage to inquire and seek truth. Anyway I enjoyed your writing enough to leave a comment.

        I’m not really into having my say, or asking questions in internet land. Most people wont let evidence, reason or logic stand in the way of what they already believe. And if God gave them the freewill right to believe what they want and He can not and will not interfere with their choice, well I am no going to either.

        By your writing you seem to enjoy the discussion and not see all contrary positions as an attack. (and I am inferring all these characteristics to you by your writing haha 🙂 )

        As somebody that was previously deceived, I like to discuss matters to find out what is true. The only reason to believe anything is because it is true. Not a relative truth but an absolute truth.

        Anyway, that is the why….

        Oh and sort of merging what Nan said below, ill say

        For my part I believe

        God does not makes mistakes

        Satan was never the serpent. Scripture says that the serpent deceived Eve not Satan.
        Satan was not a naughty Angel. Scripture says Satan was the anointed cherubim until iniquity (catalyst) was found in him. (Who put it in there and what triggered it?)

        Scripture says that God knew the end from the beginning. Scripture says everything was made by Him and for Him and without him nothing was made.

        Lucifer originally played music in the garden for God’s greatest creation, his Son. If God knew the end from the beginning, knew that Satan would rebel, and that it was not supposed to be, why did he allow him in the garden? Did he not know? Did he not care? Didn’t he have enough power to stop him? Was he playing some sick twisted prank on his Son that went horribly wrong?

        God does not make mistakes. So something else must have been happening and our interpretation of the events is in error.

        Time did not exist before God created it. Time is a created thing.

        In that instant and forever all at the same moment is eternity

        Time is like a painting, God threw some paint down (time) to grow and manifest creation. Quantum physics shows that time does not exist.

        No being made in the spiritual realm can make a decision or have freewill as there is no time in eternity.

        If there is no time in the spiritual realm, in eternity, there is no ability to make a choice to be apart from God, there is no opportunity to exercise that choice.

        As we know love without a choice is not love, God wanted to give his Son a choice, secondly God cannot give a freewill choice and control every choice that is made, than you are programmed, that is not truly freewill. Further God can’t allow a wrong freewill choice in eternity

        Hence this realm was made so that God could place his son away from himself so the son was free to make a choice or not to be with the Father.

        Angels are not given this choice.

        Scripture says angels are messengers of God.

        Does a message have the ability to change itself?

        So, if an angle is simply a messenger from God, it does not follow that they have the freewill ability to change that message?

        If an angel has freewill, why must the devil flee when you resist him? Why does he not give you the finger and hang around?

        Adam was given all authority. (Adam named the snake) and everything Adam named it, it was. Adam was given all power and authority so was able to influence and corrupt those messengers in this realm.

        When Adam made a wrong freewill choice, the iniquity that was placed in Lucifer, activated Satan and made the God of this world.

        Bionically Jude 1:6 does not show me angels chose, had freewill, it just says they were cast down. Same with 2 Peter 2:4 Messengers that missed the mark were cast out is all. It does not show me they had a choice.

        Angels are just messengers from God, so a corrupted message was cast down, a message that set itself against the truth of God

        At the very least, the answer to the question “Do Angels have freewill?” highlights some interesting things and answers lots of questions.

        Anyway, I am interested in your thoughts?

        Greg

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        1. Hello Greg!

          Thank you for the kind words! If I was still writing regularly, I imagine you and I would have some great discussions.

          You make an interesting narrative, but to me the foundation seems very shaky. You say:

          Lucifer originally played music in the garden for God’s greatest creation, his Son.

          The Son is not God’s creation. “Before Abraham was, I AM,” Jesus said. Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Latter-Day Saints, and others continue to maintain that Jesus is NOT coequal with God and is a created being — whereas that debate, as far as I’m concerned, was settled in Nicea millennia ago (and one need not go much further than John 1:1 to settle the matter today). Your logic is interesting, but it is based in heresy — and I warn you that your theology is compromised.

          Thanks for weighing in!

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        2. Hello Seth

          Sorry my bad. You are correct. Incorrect use of a word.

          God’s Son was not created, Adam was. I should of written Adam. We was the greatest of the “created” beings.

          Not sure how what I have written is in anyway heresy??? And again if my theology is compromised, if you could show me where so I don’t believe a lie, I would be grateful.

          If your not interested as you are not writing regularly (life gets busy) I understand. No expectation or obligation.

          I still have enjoyed what you have written.

          Stay blessed

          Greg.

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        3. Ah, okay then. By heresy I meant the statement that the Son was created, which turns out to have been an error.

          As for the rest — again, I’m no scholar, but I’m very wary of this sort of theology that is predicated largely on sweeping statements like “God doesn’t make mistakes” or “Why would God have allowed…?” Speculation on behalf of God is very, very delicate, and can be theologically dangerous — it’s putting Him into a box, it’s imposing our wisdom onto Him, it’s reading between the lines to make sense of God’s actions in light of what we would have done in His place. It’s sloppy theology — for, in reality, our thoughts are not His thoughts. We have no more authority to put God’s actions under the microscope and try to reason out His motivations than an amoeba trying to make sense of the works of man.

          That being said, if you were able to provide legitimate, scholastic sources to back up your account from a theologian whose track record is stellar and orthodox, I’d be more open-minded. What theologian(s) have you read on this topic? Thanks for the input!

          Liked by 1 person

        4. Hello Seth

          For the record I have read no theologian (so can’t speak to anyone’s stellar track record) I have read the bible and I talk to God.

          And to be honest your response took me by surprise.

          It constantly surprises me that people would rely on someone else’s opinion about God with something at eternally important as your relationship with God. Makes zero sense to me.
          We have the same word of God and the same Holy Spirit who wants to teach us. I don’t know why we check with flesh and blood to check what God has said? God wants to be your teacher.

          When Jesus asked the disciples who do people say I am and Peter answered you are the Christ, Jesus said blessed are you Simon-Bar-Jona for flesh and blood has not REVEALED this to you but my Father in heaven. And on this rock I will build my church… not what flesh and blood says but on revelation knowledge of God.

          Again sweeping statements about God?? I don’t know what you meant. By very definition God does not make mistakes, so no mistake was made. Only our understanding of it can be in error. If your God makes mistakes, you need a new God.

          God wants you to know him more than you want to know him. He can be known. Jesus said nobody knows the father except the Son. Great news, we are his sons, we can know him.

          God is limitless, he cannot be but in a box. We set our limit with our relationship with God. It does not contain God, it contains us. Than not believing God, we allow other people’s fears, opinions and lack of knowledge to contain us.

          Seth I don’t know anything about you, but God does, He told me to post this song for you. He likes you, He loves you, He carries your picture in his wallet!

          You are not trying to overcome this world, you are batting from a position of victory. Enjoy it.

          Stay blessed

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        5. Greg,

          I appreciate your kindness, brother! It’s been nice discussing this issue with you.

          You speak of the illuminating power of the Holy Spirit when reading the Word, and I agree with you about that. However, at the same time you seem to discount the role of “flesh and blood” in the life of the believer, especially those of legitimate, God-given authority to protect the flock of God. I believe your reasoning here fails on at least two levels: On the level of your purpose by engaging in this discussion, and regarding the very Scriptures you wish to uphold.

          To the former — if I shouldn’t consider the interpretations of other individuals when it comes to the Scriptures, then what authority do you have to tell me that my interpretation of them is faulty? Why should I listen to you at all, if all I need is the Bible and the Holy Spirit? You and I have the same Spirit and the same Bible — and yet, we are in disagreement. If it were impossible for someone to be wrong if they had those two things, then it would be impossible for us to be in disagreement — one of us is in error. It is for this reason that God has established the church, which leads to my second objection.

          The Scriptures themselves give many examples of how even true believers, baptized in the Holy Spirit, have been in error and have required apostolic and pastoral correction. This is, in fact, the theme of almost the entirety of the epistles written to the Corinthians. It doesn’t make sense to me now that just because those letters have been canonized into Scripture, churches, denominations, and individuals are now immune to heresy and error. If, as you seem to say, other people are not necessary to help each of us remain orthodox and in good doctrine, then there would be no reason for God to establish the church. The books of Timothy and Titus are also good examples of the role earthly pastors have in helping their parishioners remain in right doctrine.

          As a concluding thought — I find your lone wolf philosophy when it comes to Christianity to be irresponsible and best and dangerous at worst. To not even read or take into consideration the work of theologians and other authorities is beyond me — I simply don’t trust myself so much as to not even make myself educated on what other men and women learned in the Scriptures are saying. I would highly encourage you to come under the covering of a local church, if you are not in one already, for those not under such covering are ripe for deception and attack. God bless you, brother, and thanks again for the discussion!

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  1. Seth .. I’m somewhat surprised that you don’t have your own topics to discuss!??! 😉

    In any event, here’s my suggestion. Where exactly in the bible does Satan (capital letter) originate? As an entity in and of himself … not the serpent, a naughty angel, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello again 🙂 I think you would probably receive a more fruitful answer to your question from a Bible student. I for one don’t know — nor am I sure I understand the heart of your question, since I’m not sure why you make a distinction between the “entity” of Satan and the forms he took in Scripture. To me, it’s like asking, “When did you ever actually meet your mother? Not the woman who raised you, but your mother as an entity.” I’m not making sense of the question, I’m afraid 😛

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      1. OK, let me put it this way … most Christians believe there is an entity (or spirit, if you prefer) known as “Satan.” Why? Where does the bible actually say there is such a being?

        You don’t have to be a Bible student to do a bit of research. 🙂

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    2. Hello Nan, have to weigh in, it’s close to my question

      First Bible reference is 1Chronicals 21:1

      First reference of Satan as an entity of himself is Job1:6.

      Satan was never the serpent. Scripture says that the serpent deceived Eve not Satan.

      Satan was not a naughty Angel. Scripture says Satan was the anointed cherubim until iniquity was found in him.

      When Adam made a freewill choice, the iniquity that was placed in Lucifer, activated Satan and made the God of this world.

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      1. Contrary to popular belief, the Satan in the Old Testament was never the “Satan” Christians believe in. He was ha-satan which, in the Hebrew language, means “adversary” or “accuser” and, on at least one occasion, “opponent.” With only one or two exceptions, the ha-satan referred to a human being.

        Re: the reference you noted in 1Chronicles? Read 2 Samuel 24:1 and you will see it says it was the “Lord” that incited David to count the people, not “Satan.”

        The reference you cited in Job is one of the mistranslations. (Most bibles indicate in the footnotes it is the Hebrew word ha-satan)

        The rest of what you wrote is teachings of the church and is not substantiated in the bible.

        In the New Testament, which was written originally in Greek, ha-satan is translated into the Greek word, diabolos, which translates to “devil” in the English language. And therein lies much of the confusion.

        There is much more I could share on this subject — too much to put into a comment. I devoted an entire chapter to “The Big Bad Guy” in my my book if you’re interested.

        Sorry, Seth. I’ll try to come up with another topic for you to discuss. 🙂

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        1. Hi Nan

          Not really sure where you’re coming from, what you’re saying or what your inferring or what golden gong you think you have presented, stating gotcher game over, let’s move on, when the game has not been played at all.

          So,
          None of what I wrote is church teaching, what I wrote fly’s in opposition to most church teaching, so not sure how you dismissed me there.

          I am not sure what Christians believe regarding Satan but I do know that they don’t believe in him, they believe in Jesus, that’s why they are Christians.

          But ill agree with you that what they know about him is based on what they have been told, or on their understanding of creation or their interpretation of events. What someone believes regarding the truth does not make that truth itself wrong. Just their view of it.

          Again your game breaker regarding a supposed contradiction between 1Chronicals 21:1 and 2 Samuel 24:1. I think your being a little disingenuous here. You would have seen many responses explaining your supposed contradiction using Job as contrast (when God says to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job?”) You just don’t like the answer based on your view of events. In another place it says that the Holy Spirit led Jesus out to the dessert to be tempted by the devil. You image a conflict based on your view of what you think happened. There is no conflict here.

          Like you, I could share a lot more on the subject, but I’m not sure you’re really interested. So I’ll leave it to you if you continue this discussion, start a new topic or ignore me all together 

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  2. When Adam made a freewill choice, the iniquity that was placed in Lucifer, activated Satan and made the God of this world. This is what I referenced as “church teaching.” To my knowledge, there is no scripture that denotes this.

    I would prefer not to take up space on Seth’s blog to further discuss this issue. As I mentioned, I go into considerable detail in my book for anyone who wishes to investigate the perspective I’ve presented. I also have a couple of posts on my blog that address the concept of Satan.

    One thing I try to avoid when discussing issues is making assumptions about what another person is thinking or comments about their character. If we have any further interaction, I would appreciate it if you would do the same.

    Have a great day.

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    1. Hello Nan

      Why is offence taken when none is given??

      Anyway, I guess that is what happens in a self absorbed, politically correct, we are all entitled society. I am sorry that you took my comments personally.

      Church teaching?? Ezekiel 28:14-15

      Likewise I wont take up Seth’s space to discuss this issue with you. I thought that the very purpose of why you came here in the first place was to engage in dialog, to learn and gain a different perspective. Again my problem because my assumption about you was incorrect.

      Wish you all the best with your struggles

      Have a great day.

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      1. You know, Greg, that’s the problem with the written word. It’s often difficult to determine what the other person meant.

        Let me provide the examples I was referring to so we’re clear. You wrote,

        what golden gong you think you have presented
        I think your being a little disingenuous
        You just don’t like the answer

        Perhaps you meant nothing “personal” in any of these remarks, but each one is directed to me, i.e., you think, your (sic) being, you don’t like, so what else am I to think?

        Now, regarding Ezekiel 28:14-15. Christian teaching (the church) claims these verses are about “Lucifer.” However, it clearly states in verse 11 that the writer is directing his remarks to the king of Tyre. (BTW, are you aware that “Lucifer” in the Hebrew language actually means shining one, light-bearer? Hardly a description for the figure known in today’s vernacular as “Satan.”)

        Yes, I do enjoy having discussions with others … and I do it extensively on my own blog. However, out of courtesy, I did not want to use Seth’s space for an issue that he did not initiate.

        Oh, and BTW, I’m experiencing no “struggles.”

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        1. Hello Nan

          I am glad you are not struggling.

          Again Yes those remarks were directed at you ( I was talking to you), but they are still in no way an attack. Maybe i need to learn a different way of speaking or as you say writing. Anyway so glad your not offended.

          Again, without using the work disingenuous. I struggle to see how you can disregard Christian teaching that it is about Lucifer state that verse 11 “clearly” states that its about the king of Tyre, disregard verse 13 where is says, “you were in Eden…..” and claim its not about Lucifer and disregard Christian teaching?

          Lucifer was that. shining one, light-bearer. Everything God made was good. But when Adam activated the iniquity that was in him. Satan was made.

          I did not know you had a blog. Unless you invite me in, I have probably had enough wasting my time talking about Satan. He is just the quality controller and not worthy of my consideration, but if you want to dig deeper, by all means invite me. Happy to share.

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