Kentucky fried Calvin
The Bryson A-bomb...

Cormack: "When a child is raped, is God responsible and did he decree that rape?"

 

Everyone who’s a fan of James White will remember this question, asked by George Bryson. I’m pretty sure on later broadcasts of the dividing line Dr. White christened it “the Bryson abomination.” It’s really two questions in one. Is God responsible for the rape (1,) and did God decree the rape (2.)

 

In his situation, how would you answer the question?

 

Carl: No and No...

 

Such actions are driven by the wickedness of Satan who will ultimately be judged, along with those who allowed themselves to be instruments of his ghastly plans.

 

Hammerster: I’d answer it like Dr. White. For whatever reason, God had a purpose for allowing it to happen.

 

Happy camper: Job explains it clearly

 

God removes his hand of protection but Satan is responsible for the action taken.

 

Hammerster: Which boils down to God ordaining that it would happen.

 

Cormack: So the answers would be yes to question 1, yes to question 2, and a side note to say it’s for a good purpose we don’t yet know, leaving the conclusion to that persons pain and suffering as a mystery. If the child isn’t elect to salvation under Calvinism, wouldn’t that pain and suffering be to serve God’s good purposes and pleasure, a purpose served at the expense of the lost child’s pain.

 

Hammerster: Purpose, yes. Pleasure, I don’t think I can answer that.

 

Cormack: Pardon me, maybe that wasn’t entirely clear on my part, the “pleasure” would be found in the purpose, a pleasing purpose, not pleasure in the child’s suffering, since God “takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked.” You believe God is pleased with his eternal decree, right? Albeit the idea of an eternal, determining decree gets God glory at the expense of the most vulnerable.

 

Hammerster: I’m aware of your intent. It serves His purpose. That doesn’t mean He takes pleasure in the act itself.

 

Carl @ hammerster: NO

 

Who's will was involved in the action?

 

Cormack: Not the act. Does God take pleasure in the purpose? Is the decree, a decree which in some small part pre determines the rape of countless children, pleasing to him?

 

Hammerster: His purpose in everything is His glory. So I suppose you could say He takes pleasure in His purpose. I just wanted to make sure that you didn’t think He takes pleasure in the act itself.

 

Hammerster @ Carl: Just a heads up. This isn’t the Debate a Calvinist section. With that said...

 

The rapists will was involved. It was involved in the same way Satan’s will was involved in Job. And we know who controlled that situation.

 

Hazelelponi: Everything is for God's glory. Does it glorify God and amplify His mercy and Grace to take that rapist and give them a new heart later down the road?

 

Yes.

 

Does it glorify God and exemplify His longsuffering nature and outstretched Hand to give the sinner leave to act out their own nature until which time it is clear to the man that His punishment is perfectly just?

 

Yes.

 

Does it glorify God and exemplify His power and just nature when He takes vengeance upon the man for the real crimes He committed against one of God's children?

 

Yes.

 

Does it glorify God when God brings His perfect peace and love to this innocent child who was harmed?

 

Yes...

 

We will have trials and tribulations on this earth but we take joy in it all because it is all for His glory...

 

2 Corinthians 12:9

 

"But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me"

 

Cormack: My issue is centred around the fact that God’s purpose (a purpose somehow partly satisfied by the child’s rape) won’t end in Him bringing perfect peace and love to the child. The child is not among the elect. If we believe in eternal torment, the rape is part of a wider plan, a plan that ends with the abused person ultimately in hell. God (according to Calvinism) gets glory by this seemingly inglorious situation. This appears to be a total dishonour.

 

“His purpose in everything is his glory.” Do you feel God gets equal glory from one man being damned forever (hating Him the entire time,) and another man going on to praise, worship and adore Him forever? Are the situations equal in terms of how glorious they make God, or is He already maximally glorious.

 

Hammerster:

 

This appears to be a total dishonour.

 

Maybe this is a good place to jump in. It seems to me that you are assuming that God owes some sort goodness to this child. Is that correct?

 

"His purpose in everything is his glory." Do you feel God gets equal glory from one man being damned forever (hating Him the entire time,) and another man going on to praise, worship and adore Him forever? Are the situations equal in terms of how glorious they make God, or is He already maximally glorious.

 

He gets equal glory for both.

 

Cormack: The cursed and the blessed,

 

having totally different fates,

 

behaving in completely opposite ways,

 

with one group spending an eternity in the presence of God,

 

and the other group made separate from the grace of God’s peace, in torment forever,

 

You believe these polar opposites result in “equal glory” to God. Doesn’t that sound contradictory, absurd even.

 

Isn’t God already maximally glorious?

 

Hammster said: ↑

Maybe this is a good place to jump in. It seems to me that you are assuming that God owes some sort goodness to this child. Is that correct?

 

I don’t believe so. A God of perfect love would express His sovereignty in “some sort of goodness to this child.” So for lack of a better term, God obligates Himself by virtue of who He is.

 

An all powerful God gaining glory at the expense of inglorious, helping, harmless, abused children doesn’t ring true, wouldn’t you agree?

 

Jesus is the greatest, prepared to die for the least of us. The glorious in love dying to lift up the inglorious.

 

Not the greatest taking glory from the weakest.

 

Hammerster: First question. No.

 

Second question, yes. He never changes. What changes, though, is our understanding of Him. The more we know, the more we love and adore. It’s like looking at a drop of water. Pretty cool with the naked eye, but look with a magnifying glass, and you see a lot more. Under a microscope, way more than that. And the more powerful the microscope, the more you see and the more awesome it is.

 

That’s what’s meant by God receiving more glory.

 

Cormack said: ↑

I don’t believe so. A God of perfect love would express His sovereignty in “some sort of goodness to this child.” So for lack of a better term, God obligates Himself by virtue of who He is.

 

An all powerful God gaining glory at the expense of inglorious, helping, harmless, abused children doesn’t ring true, wouldn’t you agree?

 

Jesus is the greatest, prepared to die for the least of us. The glorious in love dying to lift up the inglorious.

 

Not the greatest taking glory from the weakest.

 

There’s that assumption that there’s something worthy about that child to where God must show some sort of kindness to that child or else He’s not good.

 

That’s not biblical, though. He owes us nothing but hell because of sin. That He shows grace to any of us is, well, grace.

 

Cormack: Where exactly do you see that assumption? A more narrow quote, if possible. Because I’ve explicitly written that’s not my view. My view is that a God of perfect love would express His sovereignty by showing kindness to the child.

 

That view, which I’ve already showed, is entirely focused on Gods essence and attributes. It’s entirely to do with who He is and how He governs His creation. It’s clearly not about any deserving qualities in the creation.

 

Hammster said: ↑

And the more powerful the microscope, the more you see and the more awesome it is. That’s what’s meant by God receiving more glory.

 

This makes slightly more sense, but I’m not so sure it’s avoiding the problem. The water droplet as Gods glory, let’s go deeper into that idea. The glorified believers have a microscope, the damned only greater blindness and torment, which of the glories of God are being magnified in their eternal torment?

 

It can’t be wrath, since wrath isn’t an attribute of God.

 

Looking forward to your thoughts, God bless.

 

Hammerster: Sorry for my misunderstanding.

 

If your view is correct, then the kindest thing He could do would be to save everyone. Or at least stopping the rape.

 

It can’t be wrath, since wrath isn’t an attribute of God.

 

Well, wrath is an attribute of God. So maybe we need to examine that.

 

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,

— Romans 1:18

 

Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.

— Ephesians 5:6

 

For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience,

— Colossians 3:6

 

Cormack: Not according to Calvinists like D.A. Carson. Although rather than arguing from authority, we could argue grammatically and write that wrath is a noun, an abstract noun, while attributes are adjectives. An attribute of God is His holiness. Wrath is an outgrowth of that holiness but not the holiness itself. God needn’t be wrathful, but He’s always holy.

 

All of those quotations mention Gods wrath, but none of them describe it as an attribute of God. Even our wrath could be “revealed,” or could “come upon” people, simply in the form of physical violence or even mean spirited replies online.

 

Cormack

 

Hammster said: ↑

Sorry for my misunderstanding. . .If your view is correct, then the kindest thing He could do would be to save everyone. Or at least stopping the rape.

 

Or we could circumvent the argument altogether by not affirming a deterministic portrait of God. Man could be a truly free agent, making choices and endowed with the mysterious ability to do other than what he does. Rather than being enslaved to a sin nature fashioned and decreed by the Creator. Under my view God would only “permit” evils, evils His good action will turn around for good, rather than seemingly authoring and “promoting” evils for his own later glorification.

 

Hammerster: You’ll have to define, then, what you think attribute is so that we will be on the same page. I guess we could ignore scripture, but I don’t think that helps.

 

Cormack: That’s assuming my description isn’t biblical, after already having straw-manned my views (twice) and misapplied verses on Gods revealed wrath, so to wrongly make it an attribute of wrath. I think assuming that the content of scripture is exactly what you think it is isn’t always safe. Many scholarly and well respected Calvinists agree.

 

Hammster said: ↑

You’ll have to define, then, what you think attribute is so that we will be on the same page.

 

My message actually classed an attribute as an adjective. Wrath is an abstract noun and holiness is an attribute, wrath isn’t what God is but an outgrowth of His holiness. Googling an adjective would answer your question.

 

We can always risk ignoring or misappropriating scripture. For example, these are incredible sections of the Bible. . .

 

1 Corinthians 10:13

 

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

 

God makes a way of escape, yet we know from scripture that Christians sin. The conclusion can only be that the Christian didn’t have to sin when they did give in and stumble, meaning there’s an ability to do otherwise.

 

Matthew 23:37

 

Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.

 

Luke 13:37

 

Genesis 4:7

 

If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.

 

Joshua 24:15

 

And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

 

Jeremiah 19:5

 

They have built the high places of Baal to burn their children in the fire as offerings to Baal--something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.

 

Isaiah 7:15-16

 

He will be eating curds and honey when he knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, for before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste.

 

Jeremiah 19:4

 

For they have forsaken me and made this a place of foreign gods; they have burned incense in it to gods that neither they nor their ancestors nor the kings of Judah ever knew, and they have filled this place with the blood of the innocent.

 

Does philosophical determinism and making God into the author of all child abuse really do justice to these verses?

 

If the reply from God while he damns a child truly is “I dunt owe u nofing!” It’s the kind of response we’d receive from any hateful worldly man hanging around on the hard inner city streets.

 

Hammerster: Since this has gone from Ask a Calvinist to Argue with a Calvinist, and you are getting bitter about it, I think it’s time to bow out. I’m not in the mood.

 

Maybe someone else will pick this up.

 

Cormack: "Since this has gone from Ask a Calvinist to Argue with a Calvinist, and you are getting bitter about it, I think it’s time to bow out. I’m not in the mood."

 

As stringently as you stick to the format, my friend, I’m not a Calvinist and you’ve asked me questions so far. Is it "ask a Calvinist" or "Calvinists ask the questions"? I don’t mind either way and can see there needs to be a little give and take. I don’t believe you’re able to judge "bitterness" from behind your screen, and it’s safer we don’t. If you want to pick up on many of my unanswered questions, there’s always tomorrow.

 

Bless you and take care.

― Tyrone Cormack