Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Whose will is more free?

Many years ago I was teaching a group of college students at Mount Vernon Place Methodist Church in Washington DC. The subject was personal evangelism. During the talk I was interrupted by a student. He said something like this: "What about the free will of man versus the sovereignty of God?"

Normally I do not answer such questions because of 2 Timothy 2:23-24, "Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful." This time I did. I replied, "That is like adding apples and oranges. They do not compete. You have to be talking about the same thing in order to make sense."

He asked, "What do you mean?"

"If you want to talk about sovereignty then you must talk about the sovereignty of man versus the sovereignty of God. (God made man sovereign in Genesis 1:28--
God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number;
fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds
of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.")
The question is, 'Who is more sovereign?'

"If you wish to talk about free will then it should be the free will of man versus the free will of God. (God had given freedom of the will to man in Genesis 2:16-17--
And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in
the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and
evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.")
The question is, 'Whose will is more free?'"

1 comment:

Larry White said...

All of man's freedom and sovereignty is given of God for his glory. Thanks and glory be to God. May we be walking in his light.

In the Lord Jesus Christ.