Post Number: 14
|Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2007 - 7:33 pm: || |
Can someone help me find scripture that will debunk the fact that there is a controversy between God and Satan about who's way is best and that God will be vindicated by those who are perfectly obeying His law?
I know Satan is a defeated foe - and that Christ won the victory at the cross. I'm just trying to sort this out.
I keep hearing that God cannot intervene or help me in my struggle because according to the conditions of the great controversy, if I'm not keeping the commandments He can't.
Can someone clarify exactly what the conditions of the Great Controversy actually are? I'm struggling and trying to sort this out.
Thanks so much!
Post Number: 3572
|Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2007 - 8:55 pm: || |
Read the gospel of John. That will give you your answer.
Post Number: 5721
|Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2007 - 9:49 pm: || |
First of all, Joyfulheart, the Bible never says there is a controversy between God/Christ and Satan. The Bible always shows God as sovereign even over evil, and Satan has never raised an accusation against God that "the universe" has taken seriously. Such an idea is simply not in the Bible. The last three chapters of Job have God declaring, through His questions to Job, His own sovereign, omnicient, omnipotent power over all creation—and He NEVER answers Job's question nor reveals to him why his suffering occured.
Romans 3:21-26 reveals the only question God had to "answer". The Great Controversy (GC) says that Satan raised the questions of whether or not God was "fair" in establishing a law His people could not keep, or whether He was "fair" in condemning those who didn't keep it. The GC says that the purpose of the investigative judgment (now often re-named the "pre-advent judgment) answers these questions to the satisfaction of the entire watching universe—whoever that includes. The IJ, in other words, explains why some people are saved and others aren't. It establishes God's "fairness" and shows that Satan's claims that God requirements are too hard to keep are false.
The Bible, on the other hand, reveals that the universal "question" was NOT whether or not God was "fair" in giving people the law and expecting them to keep it, nor is the question whether or not He is fair in punishing the wicked given the difficulty of keeping the law. Rather, according to Romans 3:25 and 26, Jesus shed his blood "to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus."
Did you catch that? No one ANYWHERE has ever questioned God about whether or not He is fair in punishing sinners. The question was, "Why did He allow sinners to go on living when they were in defiance against God?" He had "passed over" the sins people had committed during history prior to the cross. They had gone unpunished, and the sinners had not been immediately destroyed.
Jesus died to show that He was justified in NOT destroying sinners at the moment of their sin. His death demonstrated that God Himself is Just and the Justifier. He is just in allowing sinners to go unpunished because He Himself took the consequences of sin. He, the Just, because He became sin (1 Cor 5:21) and became a curse for us (Gal. 3:13).
He, the Just, is also the Justifier. His took our sin and took our punishment, thus demonstrating why He left sinners UNPUNISHED. He paid their price.
The lie of the GC is sublte and profoundly evil. It sets up the straw-man argument that God has to demonstrate to the universe why He is just in punishing sin. WRONG.
The universe has always known He must punish sin. The only open question was why He didn't destroy sinners immediately. The cross of Jesus demonstrates God's justice in allowing sinners to LIVE—Jesus takes their punishment. He does this so that everyone who has faith in Jesus will be justified.
The GC assumes that Satan has a just question about God's "fairness". Romans and the rest of Scripture (including the gospel of John, as Diana mentioned) shows that NO ONE has a just question about God's right to punish sin. Read Romans 9:19-26.
Colossians 2:14-15 and Ephesians 2:14 show that at the cross, Jesus disarmed and publicly humiliated Satan and his authorities and rulers by destroying the the curse of sin. He nailed the law to the cross in His own body (the Hebrew word "Torah" and the Greek work "Logos"—as in John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word..." have the same meaning. They both refer to The Word—and Jesus IS the Word/Torah), and by nailing the law to the cross, He fulfilled it and established Himself as the object of faith and obedience.
We do not "answer" Satan's questions by keeping the law and proving him a liar. We prove NOTHING to Satan. No one in the entire universe is obligated to "answer" Satan—least of all God.
Instead, we are demonstrating to the universe the manifold wisdom of God, as His body indwelt by the Holy Spirit, according to His eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 3:8-10).
The Great Controversy is a subtle but profoundly twisting lie. God is NOT on trial. Satan has raised no objections which God is obligated to answer. Jesus is God's final word (Hebrews 1:2), and in Him God justice and righteousness and our forgiveness and eternal security are realized.
Post Number: 245
|Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2007 - 11:51 pm: || |
That's a really good answer Colleen, I hadn't really come across that particular problem with Adventism before.
Joyfulheart, on the question of God helping me in my struggle against sin and Satan, as a never has been SDA, I would say this in one more problem with a misunderstanding of the covenants.
The condition of being in covenant with God is not keeping the commandments, like under the Mosaic Cv, it is faith, trust and submission to Christ.
So if I trust Christ to help me, and ask him to, then he will.
Anyway, how am I supposed to keep God's commandments as a precondition to getting help to keep them? Doesn't make sense to me.
I receive the Holy Spirit to help me live the Christian life, not as a reward for having lived it. I need the Holy Spirit first, then I can stand a chance.
Check out Gal 3: 1-4, 5: 16-25; Romans 8: 5-17; James 4: 7-10.
Post Number: 246
|Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2007 - 11:56 pm: || |
Just to clear up a possible misunderstanding, I'm not talking about having the Holy Spirit to help me keep the law, that is a subtle error too. Jesus said the work of the Holy Spirit is like the wind blowing where it will. The guidance of the Spirit will never conflict with God' holy character, but it may well conflict with the ceremonial and now obsolete aspects of the Mosaic law.