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Thursday: The Holy Ones of the Most High — 32 Comments

  1. Today's lesson raised a bit of a challenge for me. I am well aware that the Papal powers (deliberately plural) persecuted "God's followers" but I am also aware that they persecuted just about everyone else too. If you read the history books, Jews and Muslims suffered pretty badly at the hands of the Papacy, as did anyone they considered to be a witch (sometimes that was only because the victim was a woman that someone did not like)

    Are we right to take the view that God is only on the side of those who suffered because they were proto-Seventh-day Adventists, or should we take a broader view? What about all those who suffered persecution simply because they were different? It is just that I don't really trust a definition of "God's people" based on their similarity to our belief system because that is really ego-centric rather than Christo-centric. Please don't accuse me of universalism because I am not proposing that.

    What I would really like is a discussion of who God's people are that does not sound sectarian.

    Amen!(29)
    • Maurice

      Why did the Papacy persecute the Muslims?
      Why did the Papacy persecute the Jews?
      Why did the Papacy persecute the 'proto Seventh-day Adventists?
      Why will the Papacy persecute the end-time Sabbath-keeping sons and daughters of God?

      I believe Daniel 7 is dealing with persecution by the Papacy in specific areas. These are directly related to the activities and behavior of the 'little horn power' in the vision.

      The 'little horn power' is the 'arm of Satan' and as such-
      He will persecute those who choose to obey God's law rather than laws created by man.
      He will seek to persecute those who trust our Heavenly Father and come to Him through His Son Jesus the only Mediator.
      He will seek to persecute those who acknowledge and worship God the Creator on His day and not the day the 'little horn set up.

      Daniel 7 sees the enemy of God attacking the obedient children of God because they 'fear God and give glory to Him.'

      But all that does not negate the fact that they have persecuted other groups of people for other reasons.

      Catholic anti-Semitism began long before the twentieth century. For centuries, Catholics persecuted Jews, crowding them into ghettos, forcing them to convert to Christianity, and frequently killing them. For centuries, Catholics accused Jews of ritually murdering Christian children, engaging in sorcery, poisoning wells and desecrating images of Christ. For centuries, Catholics were taught that Jews — all Jews — were cursed because they had killed Christ, a position that was not officially condemned until 1965.

      Amen!(12)
    • Yes, that's a question that is often on my mind too. And I am sure of many of us. Let the Holy Spirit guide us these days and see the answer He will give us.

      Amen!(10)
    • As far as I can tell, there are only 2 groups of people in scripture. Those who have not resisted God's salvation initiatives and those who have. Those who have reborn/renewed hearts and those who have hardened hearts. Those who live in accordance with the principles of self-renouncing love and those who live in accordance with the principles of self-seeking lust (of the flesh, eyes and boastful pride of life). This is why God looks on the heart rather than merely the outward appearance.

      Therefore I believe that any and all persons who have a self-renouncing heart are 'God's people' because it is impossible to have a self-renouncing heart apart from God's rebirthing/renewing of our heart.

      I used to believe that a person had to formally be a Christian to be saved until I realised that when the Bible says there is no other name by which we can be saved, it is referring to character not label. This matches with Romans 2:11-16.

      I believe there will be people who are saved who have never heard of the notion of Christianity. And similarly those who have heard of it but have rejected it because of the misportrayed 'God' that they experienced at the hands of others - but who despite this have gone on to have self-renouncing hearts developed within. Conversely, I believe there will also be many people who wear the label of Christian or of denomination who are not saved because under the label is a heart that is hardened in self-seeking.

      I look forward to seeing others views on this topic...

      Amen!(32)
      • Hello Bro.Phil
        I must confess that I thought you were 'stuck' on this 'self-renouncing love' but only this morning the Holy Spirit reminded me as I read your contribution that this is how the law is really fulfilled in our lives.
        If we Christians could focus on this kind of love on not on the Law, we wouldn't be so stressed out, guilt-filled, skeptical of those who don't see spiritual realities like we do, we would be seen as real, and others would love being in our company. Perhaps we need to live the law in this way. Then others would KNOW we are Christians. After all isn't that why the disciples were first called Christians? I don't think it was what they preached only.

        But your comment 'I believe there will be people who are saved who have never heard of the notion of Christianity' left me with a couple questions.

        What do you mean by 'notion of 'Christianity?'

        Will there be people saved eternally who never accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord? Jesus said "no one comes to the Father but by me." Am I being too literal here?

        Amen!(5)
        • Hi Norma.
          Thanks for your honest feedback. Yes, I can understand how some might think I have somewhat of a monocular focus! The reason for this is that I have come to realise that the principle that constitutes self-renouncing love is the core principle that underpins how true/abundant life is (only) able to operate (as per Jesus use of the definitive article in John 14:6: the Way, the Truth, the Life). It was the few pages in Desire of Ages (19-21) that 'opened my eyes' one day when reading the description of what Ellen White refers to as the "circuit of beneficence" - which is another way of describing the phenomenon of self-renouncing love. Ellen White points out how this principle is embedded in nature as evidenced by the water cycle and the oxygen cycle. She also states that it is the principle/'law' (with law meaning a constant: such as 2+2 always equals 4) that is the underpinning law of all other laws on earth, in heaven and that it has its source in the heart of God (who is the source of life). I didn't just believe it because Ellen White said it - rather when I saw what Ellen was saying I could see that it 'joined the dots' in a coherent way. My thought at the time was 'that makes perfect sense'. It also matches why Jesus said that if anyone would become a follower of Him, they would of necessity need to deny/renounce self... (Matthew 16:24).

          This principle of self-renouncing giving, this circuit of beneficence is interesting to consider. By its nature of ever giving so that others may receive (eg: as per the oxygen cycle), it is a perpetual phenomenon (hence the truth and relevance of Jesus statement reflected by Paul in Acts 20:35). And as a perpetual phenomenon, it is the 'mechanism' of 'eternalness' - so to speak. That is not to say that eternal life exists separate from God for I find/believe that there are 2 essential and inseparable/interconnected things that are necessary for abundant life:

          1) A source of life (ie God who is the only Source of Life) that a person must be in connection with (eg John 15:5)

          2) A mechanism of life - the law of self-renouncing love/given or the circuit of beneficence. I find that all laws of nature that promote and sustain abundant life share that same core nature - perpetual giving in perfect harmony. This is why a person needs to live in harmony with the law of life - why they need to have a heart reborn from self-seeking to self-renouncing (as per John 3:3-6).

          Thus any person who is reconnected back to eternal life (ie redeemed) will of necessity need both of these things: to be connected with the Source of life and live in harmony with the principle/s of self-renouncing/giving/denying. In Christian language we know this as 'trust and obey'. Paul refers to this as the 'law of the Spirit of life' in Romans 8:2 and contrasts it with the opposite phenomenon - the 'law of sin and death' which involves being separated from connection with God and living out of harmony with self-renouncing via being self-seeking.

          With respect to the 'notion of Christianity', I believe there will be people in the new earth who have never heard or known of Jesus or God because they lived at a time or place or circumstance where they were precluded from such knowledge. Some examples are (a) people from remote tribes of the past who were geographically isolated from Christian civilisation or (b) even children and young people of today in our increasingly secular society who don't know who or what God or Jesus is other than an expletive.

          But we do know that the Holy Spirit works on everyone's heart regardless of whether that person has access to awareness of Christianity or not. Paul reflects this in Romans 2:14,15 for example where he talks about the gentiles having hearts that "instinctively" live in conformity to the principles of the law even though they don't have the law. It also explains what Jesus may have been referring to in John 10:6.

          With regard to your question regarding John 14:6, Jesus statement is correct - there is no other way that abundant life works other than the 2 points I outlined above. (If there was any other way, Satan's allegation of God's way as arbitrary would be upheld). But that is where I say that eternal life will only be because a person's heart has been reborn/renewed by the Holy Spirit but that not everyone will necessarily understand who or what the Holy Spirit is, or Jesus or God. But their hearts nevertheless "instinctively" live in accordance with God's way even though they haven't had opportunity to know that that is what it is. So, yes, I believe it is easy to take too literal or narrow an interpretation of such texts - I used to do that so I know how easily it is done!

          Give what I have said some prayerful thought and research and see where the Holy Spirit leads your conviction. Happy to hear any further thoughts or concerns you may have...

          Amen!(4)
          • Phil, you have linked self renunciation with eternal life. In other words God ‘lives’ or maintain His Life by self renunciation? Adam and Eve were created perfect humans. They could not have been tempted by/with anything from within. Will you specify what about themselves would/should they renounce with respect to eternal life while in the garden.
            We know about self renunciation with respect to sinners like ourselves and the fallen Adam.

            Amen!(0)
          • Hi Kenny. Yes, I believe it is true that "God ‘lives’ or maintains His Life by self renunciation". There are only 2 options - exercise self-renunciation which precludes self-seeking or indulge self-seeking which precludes self-renunciation. Abundant life exists on a foundation of freedom-based love - it cannot exist on any other foundation/basis. Where there is freedom, there is the option of both self-renouncing and self-seeking. This will always be the case. Self-giving and self-renouncing are one in the same reality: the reality of Agape love.

            You stated that "Adam and Eve were created perfect humans" and therefore that they "could not have been tempted by/with anything from within". This unfortunately is not the case. Perfection is only maintained on condition of continuing to choose self-renouncing over self-indulging. Because they were created with freewill, the option of being tempted/of exercising a choice that is out of harmony with abundant/eternal life exists.

            The events of Genesis 3 were not the first time this had happened. Note Ezekiel 28:12-15a which affirms Lucifer too was created 'perfect' - but then note in Ezekiel 28:15b and 16 where the source of non-abundant/eternal life is identified by the writer to have arisen - it was within/internally via a choice to indulge rather than renounce pride/etc. This is also reflected in Isaiah 14:13 where it points out that the initial seed of pride indulgence rather than renunciation was within Lucifer's heart.

            'Perfection'/abundant life is always contingent upon right choice and right heart. This always has been and always will be. Twice in the history of the cosmos has the choice to self-indulge rather than maintain self-renunciation been made. Fortunately, all indications are that because of earth's sad history being forever embedded within eternity, no being will ever choose this option again (for a third time).

            Perhaps I should ask what disturbs you about the idea that 'perfection' does not mean that the freedom of choice to sin is non-existent?

            Amen!(3)
          • Phil, I too have struggled in understanding the term self-renouncing until now. Maybe if you could give us a range of synonyms to choose from it would help us understand your point.

            I have discovered that some words or phrases have picked up different meanings to other people. I like the term Principles of Life & Love, while I note you like Abundant Life, however I believe they are closely related.

            One reason I find an issue with self-renouncing is that it starts with the word "self". I believe being made in the Image of the LORD and being restored into His image means putting the LORD first, then others and then being concerned about our character.

            I look forward to your input.

            Amen!(3)
          • Thanks for the feedback Shirley. I will see what other synonyms I can use in subsequent postings.

            Amen!(1)
      • Phil, I agree with your statement "There are those who have not resisted God's salvation initiatives and those who have. Those who have reborn/renewed hearts and those who have hardened hearts.
        Matt 16:24-25 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If someone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me, 25 for whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will find it.”
        1Sa 16:7  But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

        I believe the LORD is looking for people who accept him as the Creator and Ruler of the Universe and are prepared to live according to His Principles of Love and Life.

        Since Creation the LORD has been revealing His Character to all people in many and varied ways and it is their reaction to this that matters not compliance with any formalized set of standards. Although Jesus Christ and His Word has given us the clearest revelation of His Character and His plan for the restoration of this world and His people in His image.

        Rom 1:19  Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. 
        Rom 1:20  For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 
        Rom 1:21  Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 
        Rom 2:14  For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: 
        Rom 2:15  Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) 
        Rom 2:16  In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel. 

        Amen!(9)
      • These are conclusions that many in our local congregation are accepting as well. “God’s people” have emerging characters that reflect the character of God: outward focused love (1 Cor 13:4-7).

        Amen!(5)
      • Phil, I too have come to the place that I do not believe those that are saved have to be a “Christian”. If they reflect God’s character, His name, they are kind, respectful and seek to serve those around them, they are the “ people of a certain sort” that CS Lewis describes in Mere Christianity.

        Amen!(3)
        • Yes, the LORDs aim is for us to be restored to His image. But He only promises eternal life to those who believe and accept Jesus as the divine Son of God. 1John 5:12,13

          Amen!(6)
    • I hear what you are saying my brother, Adventists have become too self-confident and egocentric about who they are in relation to God. However, we cannot place Adventist in this week's lesson as the events taking place in this prophesy actually happened way before Adventists existed. The war or persecution of saints in Daniel 7 has nothing to do with the persecutions yet to come. Daniel 7 is about events that happened during the 1260 years which are in the past.
      Daniel 7 : 21 "I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them"
      In this persecution the little horn accomplished its mission. When we begin to speak of God's people I think of future tribulation as recorded by John the Revelator. He indirectly describes God's people in Revelation 13 : 8 "And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." This verse clearly reveals that the People of God will not worship the beast but only those 'whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world' This is my understanding brother Maurice.

      Amen!(1)
  2. We are blessed when we read
    Daniel 7:25-26 New King James Version (NKJV)

    25 He shall speak pompous words against the Most High,
    Shall persecute the saints of the Most High,
    And shall intend to change times and law.
    Then the saints shall be given into his hand
    For a time and times and half a time.

    Through-out history there has been chalanges against Gods faithful people. The real amazing fact is that evil only lasts for a time, but Gods people live for eternity.
    26 ‘But the court shall be seated,
    And they shall take away his dominion,
    To consume and destroy it forever.

    Amen!(8)
  3. As an Adventist in an area which was "reached" in the late 1920's and that has only been Christian since the 1870's and where we grapple with the issue of the salvation of our "pre-contact"ancestors who lived out their lives in darkness and spiritualism. We are forced to take a broader view in this respect and,in the sense that all people are Gods, and are opposed, subverted, and denied opportunity by the enemy who works against their salvation, it works best. The arrival of, and interaction between the first Catholic missionaries (1888) after the Methodists(1875) and later Adventists (1929) brought this truth into relief against the backdrop of the world wars where missionaries of all churches paid the ultimate price for their Christianity.This view enables us to be more Christ-centric in our approach which is a really much more effective position for discipling.

    Amen!(14)
    • Kenneth, I say Amen. I agree with Maurice too. Amen. It was not only Seventh-day Adventists that were persecuted in the earlier days of persecution. As a matter of fact it was not only Christians alone other persons and religions were persecution we cannot deny this fact.
      Also, we must remember that God has His people scattered across all the earth and in all churches. The purpose of the gospel commission is to let the world know about the love of God, the sacrifice of Jesus for the so Salvation of humanity so that they will accept Jesus as Savior and Lord and relate to God through obedience to His Word. Now it is at this point that obeying the commandments including the Sabbath commandment come.
      Now here is where the persecution of God remnant church and people come. Towards the end of the age - this age to be specific- God will have a people, a called-out remnant who decided that comes what may we are going to worship, trust and obey God even in the face of death like the three Hebrew boys, like Daniel, like some faithful Christians and some Adventist pioneers and so on. It is these faith full persons that will be the remnants of the remnant who will be targeted by the Papacy because of their firm allegiance to God. Not the Adventist Church but true obedient worshipers. A number of such are in our Adventist churches and the others will be drawn from elsewhere into this remnant. I have purposed in my heart to be in that last remnant. What about you?

      Amen!(3)
  4. Paul, I would believe persons like Elder Ashton is been used and led by Holy Spirit to present His word to our hearts. Let's endeavour to pray they this Medium is truly appreciated

    Amen!(3)
  5. God knows the future! Throughout history, it is possible to find specific elements that fulfill prophecies described in the Bible long ago. Why God used such a strong set of images to describe the persecution and suffering of His people? If we look at history and the horrors of middle age, also at the wars of the last century's accounts, we see a world of universal conflicts, a world where men fight for power, possessions, money! All of these are human tendencies, while Christ preaches self-denial, meekness, love. Whoever is looking for these later characteristics will meet opposition and war from the enemy of God. May we stand on the side of God, and give our hearts for Him to abide. We may suffer from this, but at the end this is the only thing we will take from this planet, the desire not for eternal life, but a life of being with our Master forever! Good has already overcome evil, we need to hang onto that!

    Amen!(8)
  6. Someone to help me on Tuesday.Am confused does this judgement mean that we are no longer troubled by the little Horn since 1,260 years is over? Please help

    Amen!(2)
    • Lameck, I believe that the 1260 was a specific period when the pompous, persecuting horn power ruled its kingdom and it had political power, however there is then a period after the 1260 years until dominion is given to the Most High and His people during which period the principles and teachings of that power will continue to influence people. In fact we see in Revelation 13 that there are other powers during this period, namely the land beast and the "image" who influence and then persecute God's people.

      Rev 13:5  And a mouth speaking great things was given to it, and blasphemies. And authority was given to it to continue forty-two months. 
      Rev 13:11  And I saw another beast coming up out of the earth. And it had two horns like a lamb, and he spoke like a dragon. 
      Rev 13:14  And it deceives those dwelling on the earth, because of the miracles which were given to it to do before the beast, saying to those dwelling on the earth that they should make an image to the beast who had the wound by a sword and lived. 
      Rev 13:15  And there was given to it to give a spirit to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might both speak, and might cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. 

      Amen!(3)
  7. Who are the Holy Ones of the Most High? Quit simple, those who have been washed in the Blood of the Lamb.

    Now how are we washed in the blood of the Lamp is more important than who we are. We chose Jesus Christ. We surender of our will to the Master. We do not resist His drawing. Ask for forgivness of our sins. Believe He has forgiven us and is capable of saving a wreckage like us. Claim the promises He has given us. Isaiah 1:18. Romans 5:8-9. John 10:9.

    Therefore my heart rejoiced and my tongue exulted exceedingly; moreover, my flesh also will dwell in hope [will encamp, pitch its tent, and dwell in hope in anticipation of the resurrection].
    Acts 2:26.

    Amen!(3)
  8. “Jesus forgave a thief dangling on a cross, knowing full well the thief had converted out of plain fear. That thief would never study the Bible, never attend synagogue or church, and never make amends to those he had wronged. He simply said “Jesus remember me,” and Jesus promised, “today, you will be with me in paradise.” It was another shocking reminder that Grace does not depend on what we have done for God but rather what God has done for us.” Phillip Yancey
    Royce

    Amen!(3)
    • Brother Royce,

      The excerpt quoted below from the 'Desire of Ages does not support Mr Yancey's understanding about the nature of the thief's confession.

      "To Jesus in His agony on the cross there came one gleam of comfort. It was the prayer of the penitent thief. Both the men who were crucified with Jesus had at first railed upon Him; and one under his suffering only became more desperate and defiant. But not so with his companion. This man was not a hardened criminal; he had been led astray by evil associations, but he was less guilty than many of those who stood beside the cross reviling the Saviour. He had seen and heard Jesus, and had been convicted by His teaching, but he had been turned away from Him by the priests and rulers. Seeking to stifle conviction, he had plunged deeper and deeper into sin, until he was arrested, tried as a criminal, and condemned to die on the cross. In the judgment hall and on the way to Calvary he had been in company with Jesus. He had heard Pilate declare, "I find no fault in Him." John 19:4. He had marked His godlike bearing, and His pitying forgiveness of His tormentors. On the cross he sees the many great religionists shoot out the tongue with scorn, and ridicule the Lord Jesus. He sees the wagging heads. He hears the upbraiding speeches taken up by his companion in guilt: "If Thou be Christ, save Thyself and us." Among the passers-by he hears many defending Jesus. He hears them repeat His words, and tell of His works. The conviction comes back to him that this is the Christ. Turning to his fellow criminal he says, "Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?" The dying thieves have no longer anything to fear from man. But upon one of them presses the conviction that there is a God to fear, a future to cause him to tremble. And now, all sin-polluted as it is, his life history is about to close. "And we indeed justly," he moans; "for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this Man hath done nothing amiss."
      There is no question now. There are no doubts, no reproaches. When condemned for his crime, the thief had become hopeless and despairing; but strange, tender thoughts now spring up. He calls to mind all he has heard of Jesus, how He has healed the sick and pardoned sin. He has heard the words of those who believed in Jesus and followed Him weeping. He has seen and read the title above the Saviour's head. He has heard the passers-by repeat it, some with grieved, quivering lips, others with jesting and mockery. The Holy Spirit illuminates his mind, and little by little the chain of evidence is joined together. In Jesus, bruised, mocked, and hanging upon the cross, he sees the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world. Hope is mingled with anguish in his voice as the helpless, dying soul casts himself upon a dying Saviour. "Lord, remember me," he cries, "when Thou comest into Thy kingdom."
      Quickly the answer came. Soft and melodious the tone, full of love, compassion, and power the words: Verily I say unto thee today, Thou shalt be with Me in paradise.
      For long hours of agony, reviling and mockery have fallen upon the ears of Jesus. As He hangs upon the cross, there floats up to Him still the sound of jeers and curses. With longing heart He has listened for some expression of faith from His disciples. He has heard only the mournful words, "We trusted that it had been He which should have redeemed Israel." How grateful then to the Saviour was the utterance of faith and love from the dying thief! While the leading Jews deny Him, and even the disciples doubt His divinity, the poor thief, upon the brink of eternity, calls Jesus Lord. Many were ready to call Him Lord when He wrought miracles, and after He had risen from the grave; but none acknowledged Him as He hung dying upon the cross save the penitent thief who was saved at the eleventh hour. DA 749.3 - DA 750.3

      Amen!(12)
      • Norma; you are absolutely right and I agree with you. I’m well aware of the desire of ages. However the point of Philip Yancey is making is very valid, We are saved by nothing but the blood of Jesus!. My wife said that the thief on the cross probably gave great encouragement to Jesus and I believe she’s right ...Royce

        Amen!(1)
  9. Excellent question Lameck, because the Horn’s dominion was taken away, annihilated, and destroyed forever by this judgment (Dan 7:21,22,26). The Horn performs, apparently, for 2300 evenings - mornings (Dan 8:13,14) evidencing some correspondence between the three and a half and 2300 periods?

    Amen!(0)
  10. John answered and said, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name; and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow along with us.” But Jesus said to him, “Do not hinder him; for he who is not against you is for you.” (Lk 9:49,50)
    Mark says, “But Jesus said, “Do not hinder him, for there is no one who will perform a miracle in My name, and be able soon afterward to speak evil of Me. For he who is not against us is for us.“ (Mk 9:39,40).

    Amen!(2)
  11. Phil, God is self existent and the only such being (Jn 5:26). Who or what imposed those conditions/options/choices on God for His existence or for maintaining His life? Since God is Love, among other attributes like Holy, Righteous, Jealous... when He loves it is self expressive, not self renouncing. You imply that God’s every action or thought is subject to judgment by some other reality, but He always chooses self renunciation over self seeking from the two options ‘given’ Him. Who is God in that scenario?
    When Adam and Eve were in harmony with their Creator they were manifesting exactly what they were made of, they were expressing themselves, beings created in the image of God - the opposite of self renunciation. Indeed, they renounced themselves when they rebelled against God; they renounced their created status and sought another status. Satan had done the same thing!

    Amen!(1)
    • Thanks Kenny.

      Bottom line is that I believe that there is only one way that abundant life (Greek: Zoe) is possible and that God freely chooses to live that way. Some might superficially see this as somehow limiting God or that God is somehow controlled by something. I don't see it that way - I see it as a reflection of God's omniscience.

      Keep in mind that Satan has inferred/alleged that God is arbitrary. Non-arbitrary means that something has a reality-basis to it. I believe God is and does things a certain way because that is the best or only truely viable way. If God does something simply because He can or He chose to do it that way just because He decided to do it that way, then Satan's allegation of God as arbitrary is upheld.

      I do not believe God is arbitrary but that there is a reality-basis for everything God is and does. In my view, that makes God more rather than less. But I am aware some people may feel uncomfortable with this view.

      Amen!(2)

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