The Heresy of “Free Love”

I love it. People are seeing beyond color, ethnicity and gender and simply are falling in love

God’s natural order is under attack.

More than one hundred years have passed since the false equivalence of love and desire has been established. The terrifying false preaching that emotional desire is the only worthy compass for choosing a partner has thereby destroyed social, racial  and moral standards for marriage. People, Christians absolutely included have been zealous in defending the standard that “feeling a desire” for somebody is a sufficient grounds for establishing a marriage.

What they fail to understand is simply this; Desire is temporal and does not abolish all the structural issues that come with a marriage. Christians should marry foremost to keep the law of God and thus to maintain a social unit which is capable of producing righteous children. Inter-racial marriage is not only an abomination (תּוֹעֵבָה) in the eyes of God – it’s structurally an unequally yolked marriage in which the heritage, traditions and customs of both spouses will conflict and not only cause social disharmony in the home; but its effects on the child cannot be underestimated.

Children born of distinctly different races struggle through their entire lives without having an identity and heritage they can understand, venerate and follow. People of any race or combination of races can be saved through the grace of God indeed! Yet children without a kindred(γένος) people will always lack racial and cultural belonging – that social trait which is important to the establishment of nations and provides that healthy and comforting feeling of having a family extending beyond your biological mother and father.

Adam after rejecting the offer of companionship with the beast of the field was given a wife of his own flesh and blood; Adam says “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Genesis 2:23 Throughout the entire gospel in this very spirit; marriage has only been promoted and permitted between members of the same kindred nations. The apocryphal book of Tobit reads “Beware of all whoredom, my son, and chiefly take a wife of the seed of thy fathers, and take not a strange woman to wife, which is not of thy father’s tribe” ( Tobit 4:12 )  [Read more Racial Laws]

God instructs; If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them. The mortal sin of so many today is the wholesale abandonment of righteous child-bearing marriages. Their filthy lust-driven replacement in which the sins of Sodom are expressed produces amongst the worst breaches of the law of God possible.

These empty, childless relationships of abhorrent lust and pride not only fall apart rapidly: but they are exposed to unfathomable rates of cheating and “adultery” – the primary reason for this disloyalty in sodomite relationships is simply this: Sodomites have accepted fundamentally in their hearts that “sexual desire” is of a higher value to them than the well-being of children, families, nations and the church. Even worse, they have accepted that their desire has a higher value than loyalty to the almighty God who created them.  

Interracial “marriages” too live have this same problem; they exclaim “but we love each-other!” – as if that were an excuse to break God’s law and leave the world with a litter of mongrel children who will suffer their entire lives because of their lack of racial and cultural identity. Christians need to recognise that there is far, far more at play in a relationship and marriage than simply “desire” – It must be understood that God ordained laws and ordinances that not only glorify him and challenge his flock: but establish righteous nations, families and marriages.

Conclusively we must promote a firm understanding of what it ~really~ means to be married; We must ensure that men no longer use “desire” as their foremost compass for selecting a wife. Men must take into account God’s law and the yoking of their marriage; The health and identity of your children must too be considered when selecting a wife for they will bear the genealogy and social health that your marriage reflects onto them.  Rocky marriages crippled by cultural incompatibility place children under enormous stress – combined with having no racial identity is a dangerous scenario which often leads to juvenile delinquency.

Alcohol Abuse and Divorce

The ABS found that 49 per cent of women who had experienced an assault in the preceding 12 months where the perpetrator was male, stated that alcohol or drugs had contributed to the most recent incident[1] Consistent with most other studies of marriage breakdown, Burns 1984; Eells and O’Flaherty 1996; Wolcott 1984; Ponzetti et al. 1992 all found that Alcoholism related abuse resulted in approximately 7.4% of all marriage breakdowns.

Statistics show, 11 per cent of women and 3 per cent of men reported alcohol or drug abuse as the main reason for divorce (Kitson and Sussman 1982; Cleek and Pearson 1985).

Australia had a total of  48,517 divorce cases in 2015; meaning we can make a conservative estimate to establish that alcohol related abuse had a role in wrecking 3590.258 families every year.

 

1: ABS, Personal safety survey Australia 2005 (reissue), op. cit. p. 29.

On Judgement

Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

Matthew 7:1-5

The doctrinal heresies that have been pervasive for the last century are fundamentally a movement for the abolition of law and righteousness.  Everyday “Christians” are fast to strike down judgement with the first 7 words of Matthew 7:1 ; “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” – Unfortunately for their sake, Christ here was evidently speaking against hypocritical judgement; not judgement itself. Christ says “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

First and foremost, Christ establishes the principle that men who judge, will also be judged by that same measure of works. Thus the blasphemer aught to be careful judging other men for the same crime! Secondly, and often forgotten: Christ commands those hypocrites to abolish their sinfulness so that they then would be worthy of judging others. “Casting out the mote out of thy brothers eye.”

“Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.” 1 Corinthians 6:2-4

St Paul writes in his letter to the Corinthians to exact judgement upon the unrighteous, later in the chapter he speaks about how “The unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God” and prepares a list of transgressions to the law from which they are to judge the members of their society. Paul suggests the elders of the church be functional in this process in verse 5 “I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you?, no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?

It is hereby conclusive that not only do we saints and faithful followers of Christ have the capacity to judge others, but we are in-fact worthy of judging even the “smallest matters.” Judgement is not only a capacity of the saints, but it is a command given to us directly by Christ “first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

Regarding our church, 1 Corinthians 6 teaches that elders in good standing are worthy to judge the lesser esteemed members of the church for the suppression of wickedness and impiety.

The Mercy of God

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

Romans 8:1-4

Our heavenly father has freed us from the bondage of the law of death – the perfect sacrifice of his son has covered all the penal demands for salvation: How blessed we are to be given the gift of salvation, wearing the flesh of the fallen man which leads all men to fall short of God’s legal demands for salvation.

How fortunate we are to have kept the laws of Christ and his prophets for guidance: How blessed is a nation to have the very word of God for instruction. How merciful is our God to dispense such laws without the old fears of spiritual condemnation for transgression.

How insufferable are those who condemn the good and holy law of our God; Who blaspheme our Lord and profess a doctrine of lawlessness and sin.

Do not be fooled; The unrighteous man who dishonours God with lawlessness surely will live to regret his decisions, both in this temporal world and in the afterlife : The sinful ways of man, resulting in such cruelty and harm in our world may only be properly suppressed with the vigorous application of God’s law.

Fulfilment and Strength to be found in the Law of God

I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. Romans 7:25

Praise be to God indeed, for how fortunate is a nation to have been bestowed upon laws of righteousness that God himself designed! The flock of the modern world have been led betrayed greatly: being raised in an atmosphere of such lawlessness and individualism, the common man not only knows the fulfillment and wholesomeness of a Christian society – but he has been taught to resent and spit upon the laws and ordinances of God.

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. 

Psalm 1:1-4

The righteous, good and just law of God is the delight of the Lord and the blessing upon man. Christians are taught time and time again throughout the gospel of the Israelites and even the history of Europe; that a nation that disrespect God’s law and abandon his rule fall asunder.  The man with his life and convictions rooted in the law of God will indeed be like a fruitful tree, he will not wither and weaken at the stresses of the world – he shall prosper despite all the circumstances stacked against him.

The man who does not indulge in temptation like pornography will have a happy marriage.

The man who does not indulge in substances like alcohol and drugs will maintain a strong will, health and career.

The man who places God before all else, who cares not for popularity and petty politics will inherit the kingdom of heaven.

Honest Prayer and Firm Doctrine are the only true sources of strength and fulfilment. 

Theonomy in the Westminster Confession of Faith

Westminster Confession of Faith 

Chapter XIX

Of the Law of God

VI. Although true believers be not under the law, as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified, or condemned; yet is it of great use to them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life informing them of the will of God, and their duty, it directs and binds them to walk accordingly; discovering also the sinful pollutions of their nature, hearts and lives; so as, examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against sin, together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ, and the perfection of His obedience.

It is likewise of use to the regenerate, to restrain their corruptions, in that it forbids sin: and the threatenings of it serve to show what even their sins deserve; and what afflictions, in this life, they may expect for them, although freed from the curse thereof threatened in the law. The promises of it, in like manner, show them God’s approbation of obedience,and what blessings they may expect upon the performance thereof: although not as due to them by the law as a covenant of works. So as, a man’s doing good, and refraining from evil, because the law encourages to the one and deters from the other, is no evidence of his being under the law: and not under grace.

VII. Neither are the forementioned uses of the law contrary to the grace of the Gospel, but do sweetly comply with it; the Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely, and cheerfully, which the will of God, revealed in the law, requires to be done.


The Westminster Confession of Faith, for better or worse: is the foremost doctrinal creed in use by the Presbyterian world today; this too includes the Presbyterian Church of Australia.

Sections I-V establish in fierce terms that the “covenant of works” has been abolished and that the works of the law of God are not sufficient to fulfill the penal demands of salvation.

Section VI is a firm statement regarding the usefulness of the law of God for Christian life and practice. It reads “It is of great use to them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life informing them the will of God, and their duty, it directs and binds them to walk accordingly; discovering also the sinful pollution of their nature, hearts and lives.”

Summarily it makes the argument that the law of God is the foremost reflection of God’s character and desire for the lives of men. Paul writes of this heavily in Romans chapter 7.

Verse 12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
Verse 22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man.
Verse 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

The WCF continues to argue that God is pleased ( approbated )  with the obedience of men to his law, it too concludes that the law prescribes the blessing we may expect upon our obedience to the law.

Section VII being the final section of the articles of the Law of God, reads that the use of the law is not contrary to the grace of the Gospel. Obedience to God’s law in-fact, complies directly with the gospel in subduing the sinfulness of man and enabling him to do that with cheer and determination, as God requires.


Antinomiansm therefore is unacceptable inside of the Church which professes the Westminster Confession of Faith. We Presbyterians must be uncompromising in our resolve and always remember that the eternal law of God is the ultimate reflection of God’s character – and we have been blessed by God to be granted the ability of will to fight against sinfulness and immoral desire.

“There are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jude 1:4

 

Evangelisation in the new century

 

“Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

Matthew 7:6


Christianity has for many decades been led astray by the call of church liberals to ‘modernise or die’ – a catch-call based on the fallacious argument that if the Presbyterian Church does not mould itself to be socially acceptable and meet the standards of this fallen world, it will perish and fall asunder, being unable to draw a honest congregation from amongst the lost sheep of our day. Presbyterianism however, will not survive without firm, bible-based preaching that is not afraid to learn through the lens of tradition and sincerity.

Chapter six of the book of John is an enormously relevant story to our situation today. Christ had with Him at this point an enormous following, consisting of those who had witnessed the miracles of Christ and were enamoured by His glory. Christ however, undaunted by the fear of losing popularity professed the word of life; “As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.” – this doctrine was hard teaching, and wasn’t popular with the people of the day for obvious reasons.

John 6 verses 61 and 66 read: “When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you?” and “From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.” – this principle of unrepentant honesty and truth was not only set forth by Christ; but so too was it seen in the lives of the prophets of Israel and Judea. Christ and the prophets of our Lord have always dispensed the law and doctrine with courage and uncompromising zealotry: Placing truth before popularity every time.

The Presbyterian Church of Australia’s foremost doctrinal standard is the Westminster Confession of Faith; it reads in chapter xix of the law of God: “Although true believers be not under the law, as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified, or condemned; yet is it of great use to them, as well as to others; in that, as a rule of life informing them of the will of God, and their duty.” St Paul said in Romans that ‘the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. ‘ Christians today must remember this; that God ordained laws and ordinances for us to glorify him, and to lead righteous lives.

Liberalised churches that seek to throw away the contents and real value of the Old testament and New testament laws will only distance themselves from the generation of youth raised in a lawless and wicked world. According to the British ‘Daily Mail’ Generation ‘Z’ is the most conservative generation since the second world war: William Strauss an American historian and author of the book ‘The Fourth Turning’ predicted accurately that a generation such as ours that has grown up in times of crises, faithlessness and moral depravity will ruthlessly seek strict and uncompromising religiosity in their teenage and young adult lives. Traditional Presbyterianism now has a golden opportunity to be the church and gathering place of this generation thirsting for the solution to the Western World’s state of moral degeneration.

Church liberalism has led to broken homes, alcohol and drug abuse, scepticism of God and worst of all: abandonment of natural, healthy gender roles and duties. Presbyterianism therefore, must take up the mantle of Christ and the prophets; We must be uncompromising on our beliefs, as we know both in theory and in practice that compromise on our world-view only leads to disunity, corruption and eventually weakness. The evangelical liberals of the church seek to draw in ‘wider sections of the community’ by compromising on the law of God; even though it has been proven time and time again throughout history that only honest and hard preaching based in gospel truth will bring God’s blessing, and a congregation that will stand the test of time.

Presbyterians today find themselves in a situation not too dissimilar from the Scottish Covenanters of the 17th century. Richard Cameron, the famous Covenanter preacher was martyred in his struggle against the indulgence of the Presbyterian church; submission to the institutions of the British crown. Today the Presbyterian Church of Australia in many cases has submitted to the institutions of modernity: Treating Feminism, Sodomy, Fornication and all the other stripes of immorality with unobjectionable, soft preaching.

To compromise on God’s perfect and good law not only alienates genuine members of the church, but also demonstrates weakness, and scepticism towards God. The ‘wider sections of the community’ which we would like to evangelise will not easily devote their entire lives to God if we are seen compromising on God’s law and ordinances. The theme for the P.C.A this year is “Taking God Seriously” – We ought to be doing so with courage and conviction.

Evangelising the ‘broader community’ will be most effectively performed if we demonstrate zealous love for our God. Today’s modern world of complacency and faithlessness bears children who would be enamoured and drawn in by our faithful zeal. An uncompromising Presbyterian Church would be like “the light of the world; A city set upon a hill that cannot be hidden.” to paraphrase Christ in Matthew 5:14

Young people with a thirst for religiosity are disenfranchised when they seek God and are met with confused church eldership who franticly invite them to “contemporary” music performances and light-handed bible studies. We must remember that those who can only be attracted by weak and heretical teaching are the sort of people who would not join the Presbyterian Church of Australia in the first place. Those hardened souls who can only be bought with chocolate cake, guitars and religious highs will join the ranks of evangelical “Hillsong” church or go to their local “C3”

Young Men, particularly those of the Presbyterian tradition: need religiosity not based in “feelings, emotion and spirituality” for these are often very feminine forms of religiosity. Young men need religiosity based in doctrine, law and duty. There is room for everything in the Lord’s church – but the feminisation of many Presbyterian churches in Australia has resulted in the wholesale alienation male Presbyterians. Lindsay Harold wrote in her article ‘For Women Whose Husbands Are Withdrawing From Church’: “Most men instinctively withdraw from Christianity that is focused on feelings. They don’t want Jesus to be their boyfriend. They don’t want to sing mushy love songs to Jesus or talk about their feelings about God. So a worship service that seems like just feeling happy thoughts about Jesus is going to grate and, over time, push them away.

The answer to getting men involved and passionate about church is apologetics. Apologetics is the study of the reasons and evidence for the Christian faith. It’s based on facts, not feelings. And men will engage with a Christianity focused on believing something they have evidence for and then going on a mission to change the world (or at least their corner of it).”

Conclusively it must be known that many younger Christians, or people inquiring into Christianity are discouraged by indifference on moral and political issues which are a direct abomination to God’s natural order. Presbyterian churches should seek to draw in the younger, conservative generation by zealous, uncompromising faithfulness to our gracious and loving God. We should return to history, tradition and gospel truth to proclaim a message of confidence and legitimacy: The solution to the depravity of our age.

Presbyterian Head Covering

 

1st book of Corinthians ; Chapter 11 –

First Section: Ordinances of the Church

Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.

But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.

But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.

For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.

For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

St Paul’s ordinances of the church reveal that a man does not cover his head because he is the glory and image of God. Women must cover her head because she is the glory of man, and not in the image of God. We soon learn that long hair is the glory of a woman.

Second Section: The natural law of God

For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man.

Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.

10 For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.

11 Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.

12 For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.

13 Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?

14 Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?

15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.

16 But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.

St Paul reflects on the Genesis creation story to make clear that woman is not the image & glory of God as she was created for the man. Paul continues to argue that natural law deems it unholy for a woman to pray to God without a covering and that long hair is a glory to women as it is a natural covering for her.

Church ordinance deems that it is unholy for a woman to pray to God without covering her hair; and that if her hair is uncovered she has committed a dishonour equal to shaving or cutting off her hair.

So where is the reasoning behind this?

It can be argued firmly that women should cover their hair as it is a glory to them; covering her hair is for modesty  ( 1 Timothy 2:9 ).

The covering is an important symbol to denote Godly submission to her husband. Just as man is the head of woman: God is the head of the angels – those angels whom in rebellion ( Job 4:18, 2 Peter 2:4, Jude 1:6 ) bring darkness to the world. She must then wear the “power” ( a sign of submission ) upon her head.

Let us not forget that the only time in the scripture in which women had their hear uncovered in church was in Numbers 5:18 ; where these women were uncovered to be identified as those who stand accused of being disloyal, rebellious wives who had committed adultery with other men.  Genesis 24:64-65 also shows that Rebekah wore a head-covering as a symbol of her submission to Isaac.

Conclusively it must be understood that 1 Corinthians 11 is written in two discrete sections. The law of the scripture demands women dress modestly in church and given the second section of this chapter; they must cover their hair in church as the hair of a woman is the glory of a woman. Ultimately women must wear the head covering as a symbol of their submission to their husbands and submission to the ordinances of God and the fathers of the church.

There are no contradictions in scripture; and we know the Presbyterian church has always advocated head-covering until the age of church liberalism in the 1960s : We should look to the combined wisdom of the many generations to find balanced and clear doctrine.

Read more here

A. R. Fausset (1821-1910)

Fausset co-authored with David Brown and Robert Jamieson the work, A Commentary, Critical, Experimental, and Practical on the Old and New Testaments.

“In putting away the veil, she puts away the badge of her subjection to man (which is her true ‘honor’), and of her connection with Christ, man’s Head. Moreover, the head covering was the emblem of maiden modesty before man (Gen. xxiv: 65), and chastity (Gen. xx: 16). By its unlawful excitement in assemblies is avoided, women not attracting attention. Scripture sanctions not the emancipation of woman from subjection: modesty is her true ornament.”

“It hath a threefold use, For decoration, as in Isa. iii. 23. 2. For a sign of modesty, pleaded for by the apostle, 1 Cor. xi. 6. 3. And mainly a sign of women’s subjection to their own husbands…”

M. R. Vincent (His Word Studies in the New Testament was published in 1886)

“The head-dress of Greek women consisted of nets, hair-bags, or kerchiefs, sometimes covering the whole head. A shawl which enveloped the body was also often thrown over the head, especially at marriages or funerals. This costume the Corinthian women had disused in the Christian assemblies, perhaps as an assertion of the abolition of sexual distinctions, and the spiritual equality of the woman with the man in the presence of Christ. This custom was discountenanced by Paul as striking at the divinely ordained subjection of the woman to the man.”

J. Vernon McGee (1904-1990)

“Apparently some of the women in the church at Corinth were saying, ‘All things are lawful for me, therefore, I won’t cover my head.’ Paul says this should not be done because the veil is a mark of subjection.”

John Knox (1505-1572)

“First, I say, the woman in her greatest perfection was made to serve and obey man, not to rule and command him. As saint Paule doth reason in these wordes: ‘Man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man. And man was created for the cause of the woman, but the woman for the cause of man; and therfore oght the woman to have a power upon her head,’ (that is, a coverture in signe of subjection).”

John Calvin (1509-1564)

“So if women are thus permitted to have their heads uncovered and to show their hair, they will eventually be allowed to expose their entire breasts, and they will come to make their exhibitions as if it were a tavern show; they will become so brazen that modesty and shame will be no more; in short they will forget the duty of nature….So, when it is permissible for the women to uncover their heads, one will say, ‘Well, what harm in uncovering the stomach also?’ And then after that one will plead [for] something else: ‘Now if the women go bareheaded, why not also [bare] this and [bare] that?’ Then the men, for their part, will break loose too. In short, there will be no decency left, unless people contain themselves and respect what is proper and fitting, so as not to go headlong overboard.”

“Hence we infer that the woman has her hair given her for a covering. Should any one now object, that her hair is enough, as being a natural covering, Paul says that it is not, for it is such a covering as requires another thing to be made use of for covering it. And hence a conjecture is drawn, with some appearance of probability — that women who had beautiful hair were accustomed to uncover their heads for the purpose of showing off their beauty. It is not…” (John Calvin’s Commentary on Head Coverings)

Existence of Evil.

But there stands out the great fact of the existence of much suffering in the universe of God; and reason asks: “If God is almighty, all-wise, sovereign, why, if benevolent, did He admit any suffering in His world? Has He not chosen it because He is pleased with it per se?” It is no answer to say: God makes the suffering the means of good, and so chooses it, not for its own sake, but for its results. If He is omnipotent and all-wise, He could have produced the same quantum of good by other means, leaving out the suffering. Is it replied: No, that the virtues of sympathy, forgiveness, patience, submission, could have had no existence unless suffering existed? I reply that then their absence would have been of God no blemish or lack in the creature’s character. It is only because there is suffering, that sympathy therewith is valuable.

Suppose it be said again: “All physical evil is the just penalty of moral evil,” and so necessitated by God’s justice? The great difficulty is only pushed one step farther back. For, while it is true, sin being admitted, punishment ought to follow, the question returns: Why did the Almighty permit sin, unless He be defective in holiness as in benevolence? It is no theodicee to say that God cannot always exclude sin, without infringing free agency; for I prove, despite all Pelagians, from Celestius downwards, that God can do it, by His pledge to render elect angels and men indefectible for ever.

Does God then choose sin? This is the mighty question, where a theodicee has been so often attempted in vain. The most plausible theory is that of the optimist; that God saw this actual universe, though involving evil, is on the whole the most beneficent universe, which was possible in the nature of things. For they argue, in support of that proposition: God being infinitely good and wise, cannot will to bring out of posse into esse, a universe which is on the whole, less beneficent than any possible universe. The obvious objections to this
Beltistic scheme are two.

It assumes without warrant, that the greatest natural good of creation is God’s highest end in creating and governing the universe. We shall see, later in this course, how this assumption discloses itself as a grave error; and in the hands of the followers of Leibnitz and the optimists, vitiates their whole theory of morals and their doctrine of atonement. The other objection is, that it limits the power of God. Being infinite, He could have made a universe including a quantum of happiness equal to that in our universe, and exclusive of our evils.

I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. Isaiah 45:7

Robert L. Dabney
Systematic Theology 


Terms:

theodicee – an attempt to answer the question of why a good God permits the manifestation of evil.

beneficent – resulting in good 

Regarding “Double-Predestination” in the Reformed Theology.

Whenever it is said that the Lord hardens, it is not meant that He does so by infusing any sinful qualities into the heart of man: as it is expressed by the apostle, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God; for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man.” For He is incomprehensibly holy, and infinitely removed from being accessary to anything that is sinful in the creature. But, It is said He hardens when He not only permits and leaves the man to the hardness of his own heart, which is natural unto the sons of fallen Adam, but also when He withholds or withdraws somewhat of that grace given to the creature, on which hardness of heart follows

William Guthrie.
Presbyterian Covenanter

This out of interest; was made in reference to Romans 9:16-18:

“So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.”

Our argument is that a man, having not been given grace by God’s sovereign reign – is predestined to damnation.

We do not make the argument that God had any role in making men lawless and sinful, for we after the fall of man – do that by our own free agency.