Friday, August 6, 2010

Is God Irresistible?

Friday's Edition
What Does the Bible Say?

Gospel-driven Disciples
A-Z Bible Resource

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This question was submitted to the
 Gospel-driven Disciples A-Z Bible Resource:

Can human beings or any entity
 for that matter resist God?

The answer is very simple. Yes, of course any human being or entity, such as Satan, fallen angels, etc. can resist God. One does not have to look very far or for very long to see people resisting God. For example we read in Romans 13:1-2:

“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.” (ESV – emphasis mine)

There is no doctrine or teaching in the bible that says that God cannot be resisted. God is resisted every day in innumerable ways by both non-believers and believers. The confusion comes when one tries to understand and reconcile the biblical teaching of irresistible grace. 

Irresistible grace is the understanding that once the Holy Spirit begins to pursue an individual whom the bible calls the “elect” the Holy Spirit will overcome the resistance in the sinner’s heart and will successfully apply the benefits of the atonement to said heart rendering the sinner willing to submit to God thus ending that sinner’s resistance.

What needs to be made very clear is though God permits resistance to Him and His Holy righteousness it is only for a limited time. God will permit you or any entity to resist Him until He determines to end the resistance. There will come a day, by judgment or chastisement, death, the overcoming by the Holy Spirit, or the end of this present age that any and all resistance will end. We can see an example of this in Genesis 6:3:

“My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” (ESV)

God allowed sin, unrighteousness, and resistance to Him from Adam’s sin until He told Noah to build the ark. There was a limit to the resistance – man would have 120 years longer to resist God but then that resistance would be ended by a worldwide flood that would kill every living thing except those eight (8) souls whom God safely hid in the ark.

Resistance has been rampant since Noah came off the ark and he and his little family re-populated the earth. Sometimes God ends resistance with the death of the resister, sometimes God end the resistance with the conversion of the resister. Mark it down, God will not always be long-suffering and permit His will to be resisted. Judgment is coming and He will return to this earth to put down all resistance.

So, what is the biblical answer to the question can human beings, or any entity for that matter resist God? Yes, human beings and any entity can resist God for as long as God chooses to permit the resistance. Take warning, dear soul, when God determines according to His own purpose and good pleasure to end your resistance, He will definitely, conclusively, ultimately end your resistance.

[Be sure to read in tomorrow's post of the tragic murder of a national figure]


welcome to my world of poetry said...

A great read Gregg, I am finding your writings very interesting.

Have a nice day.


JD Curtis said...

I agree.

God loved us so much that he gave us freewill to accept Him or reject Him and His ways. What could be more loving than that?

It's Friday and Sunday is coming. Let's keep brother Gregg in out prayers for his Bible Study that he's trying to get off the ground.

Let us pray that the unchurched in that area have stirrings in their hearts to know about God and that they may come to learn more through Gregg's ministry if that is God's plan for their lives.

Kansas Bob said...

Agree with what JD commented about love and freewill.

Gregg said...

Yvonne - Thanks again!

JD Curtis - Thank you for your prayer and encouraging words about this bible study! I truly appreciatge it. However, don't mis understand my point - I do not believe that we possess free will, God allows us to resist until He determines to sovereignly overcomes our resistance making us willing to come to him. Irrisistible grace means that God will overcome the resistance in the heart of his elect making them willing to come to him - or know one would.

KB - I thank God also for His love. I also thank him that according to His good pleasure He chose to redeem me. He made good on His choice by overcoming the resistance in my nature and rendering me willing to come to him.

IanH said...

Gregg, yes we are to honour our authorities, but have the right to change out those in authority in a democratic society, God willing. What gets me upset in a democratic society are are the number of people that whine and complain about the government, but are apathetic and will not get out and vote on election day.It seems that if 40% of the population turns out to vote for three parties, the party elected could be representing as little as 15% of the population! In the meantime, 85% must honour any laws generated by that government. Go figure!

AL said...

"However, don't mis understand my point - I do not believe that we possess free will,"

You've got a post out here somewhere on that subject - I printed it off and carry it around in my Bible - good information.
Another great post, thanks!

Transparent Tulip said...

thank you, that was very informative and at the same time causes my heart to revere and worship the Lord.