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Matter of Faith (03/07/2010)
God Never Forces Anyone

From: Bill Steidtmann

Adam: Whadaya know for sure?

Bob: I just canít understand why you donít believe in free will.

Adam: I guess it depends on how you define ďfreeĒ.

Bob: I mean completely independent of outside influence.

Adam: Only God is that free.

Bob: You just donít get it. God doesnít want robots!

Adam: Youíre right, robots are too stubborn and independent. The Potter wants clay, not robots.

Bob: God never forces anyone to worship or believe in Him!

Adam: But He does give them the power to do that, right?

Bob: Of course, by the Holy Spirit.

Adam: Like it says in 1 Corinthians 12:3.

Bob: Yeah, it says ďWherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.Ē

Adam: And God would never force the Holy Spirit on someone, against their will?

Bob: Absolutely not.

Adam: What about Philippians 2:10-11 where it reads ďThat at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.Ē

Bob: Isnít that awesome?

Adam: Yes it certainly is. So, is that every knee and every tongue, or just some knees and some tongues?

Bob: All of them... even the ones in Hell, because Hell is ďunder the earthĒ, so that list includes everyone.

Adam: What if their knees get stiff in the intense heat and they donít want to bend them?

Bob: They donít have any choice, God makes them do it.

Adam: I bet that makes them mad enough to curse.

Bob: Yeah, like a sailor. Remember, in this world God restrains sin, but in Hell all restraints are taken away.

Adam: But in between all the cursing and unrestrained sinning, the people in Hell confess that Jesus is Lord?

Bob: Yup.

Adam: If every tongue confesses that Jesus Christ is Lord, yet no one can say it but by the Holy Spirit, how did the people in Hell manage to do that?

Bob: God forces them to say it! Why do I have to keep repeating myself? Donít you have ears to hear?

Adam: So you think the Holy Spirit jumps in and out of them like a spiritual Hokey Pokey?

Bob: No, donít be stupid. Only the people in Heaven have the Holy Spirit.

Adam: Whatís the difference between the torture and forced confessions of the Inquisition, and those of Hell?

Bob: Hell is more glorious.

Adam: Thereís nothing glorious about losing most of humanity to the Devil. It would be the worst failure, ever.

Bob: It is not!

Adam: Okay, the worst failure would be to lose all of humanity to the Devil. Most would be second worst.

Bob: As long as their tongues say the right words, itís a glorious victory.

Adam: Your vision of glory doesnít seem to require a lot of sincerity. I donít think the Great Pumpkin is going to authenticate this pumpkin patch anytime soon, and God is a lot more discerning than a flying pumpkin.

Bob: Sincerity schmincerity! If he wanted results Linus should have got down on his knees, lit the entire pumpkin patch on fire, and ignore Sally if she runs back and forth screaming ďHeís gone completely insane!Ē.

Adam: And doesnít all that hellfire burn their tongues so bad that it sounds more like ďHemuth Krath eh LeherĒ?

Bob: Itís more like divine ventriloquism. All things are possible with God!

Adam: Does that include saving everyone?

Bob: Technically I suppose it might.

Adam: Good, because if God saved everyone through Jesus Christ, it would make perfect sense that every knee would bow, and every tongue would confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, and everyone would do this by the Holy Spirit. But I have to confess that I canít force anyone to believe it.



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