Can one choose to believe, or does it just happens?

Discussion in 'Answers' started by Unregistered, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Can one choose to believe, or does it just happens?

    Hi, this is my second time on the forum. I'm new to christianity. As I read the bible I find the christian message more and more valuable and attractive. I can see all the good it could bring in me if I was able to put it more into my life. I'm trying to understand what it means to believe, and I often wonder if one can choose to believe, or if it just happens.
    Thanks for your time,
  2. It is our choice whether or not we believe God or not believe Him
  3. To "believe" means to trust in, rely on, and depend of God. So to 'believe on the Lord Jesus Christ' is to allow Him to be the Lord of our life.

    Believe does not mean to just mental assent, to just believe that He lived or even that He is who He is. Many people really believe Jesus is the Son of God, but they will not repent and recieve Jesus into their lives. They want to go their own way.

    Is says in
    James 2:19
    Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

    He KNOWS who He is but he will never let Jesus be His Lord or be saved.
  4. :smiley60: In the book of Luke 1:1 it is written ...Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us . even as they delivered them unto us which from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word .

    :smiley90: in this word we can know of the eyewitnesses

    In 2nd Thessalonians we read the account of Paul and silas and Timothy to the church contained in the message is the message of spiritual growth that abounded in faith by belief ......they believed the testimony of Paul regarding Jesus Christ and the cross and so will be with Jesus Christ forever

    In the Acts 13:39 it is written all who believe are justified .........Be it known unto you therefore men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins and by him ALL WHO BELIEVE are justified from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses .

    :smiley90: this tells us that Jesus paid the price for man's redemption and through him alone we can be forgiven of sins because of what Jesus did at the cross we can place our faith in what he did at the cross , we know by this word that all other things believed does not have the ability to justify any one with God ,not even the law of Moses
    , now if you continue reading on there is a "beware" and this speaks of the judgment of God and it plainly says it will come upon the rejectors of truth , this is because of unbelief toward Jesus Christ as the source of all salvation
  5. :smiley40: There my friend is also the account of Thomas who had to see Jesus Christ after he was put to death on the cross , now Thomas had eaten and been disciplined by Jesus Christ and yet he declared he would believe if he saw ,and he did see the risen Lord and savior :smiley90: he placed his hand on the pierced wounds of Jesus . One look and Thomas was saved from his doubt and unbelief his despair , his worry what a peace beyond all understanding :smiley90: it is within every ones power to look to Jesus and believe saved to all the ends of the earth . Jesus the Christ is OUR TREE OF LIFE ,he did not come to condemn the world he come to save it , he often was found eating with sinners :smiley90: you see friend the salvation that Jesus Christ afforded us ALL , it is intended for the entirety of the world :smiley90: now of course there will always be two classes of believers one will be justified aand the other will be Judged , God declared it . God in his mercy and grace made a way to save mankind from the penalty of death and eternal seperation God did this by and through Jesus Christ . Even though the death penalty was imposed on the entire human race by Adam and Eve choosing to eat of the forbidden TREE God said in the day you do you shall surely die . God gave his only begotten son to die on a (TREE) cross that who so ever shall believe in him shall NOT PERISH BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE :smiley90: but he who believes not is condemned already . I believe God did provide a savior JESUS CHRIST OUR TREE OF LIFE and by his grace we are no longer under the penalty of death and eternal separation and damnation :smiley90: God had to judge sin and he did so pour out his judgment on Jesus so we may be reconciled back to God
  6. :smiley40: all one has to do is walk by a graveyard to know that God did tell us the truth :smiley40: and he also knows that satan who was once the most high of Angels hates the notion of man having been given dominion over (placed over ) and he does intend to destroy the human race with deception

    God never intended us to be created to die or to live in darkness or ignorance of the truth , God breathed breath into man and he never chose that we should die or be separated from him estranged from his Love toward us

    this was what satan intended to do , lie to Eve ,and by deception create the fall of man :smiley70: God drove Adam and Eve from the garden ,this was a act of mercy ,why was it a act of mercy ? because if they would have eaten from the tree of "LIFE" they would have lived forever knowing good and evil . Can you imagine (evil) living forever :smiley80: that would have been the worst thing ever to happen to the human race :smiley70: God's love for man even then was so strong that God saw Adam through into exile from paradise the garden of Eden .

    God never intended man to know evil by experiencing it and becoming it :smiley70: God then placed cherubim' s to keep the way of the tree of life

    Jesus Christ defeated on the cross , death hell and the grave and because he did we can choose a life consecrated to Christ and have back eternal life :smiley90:
  7. :smiley60: when reading the book of Genesis in chapter three when you read " TILL YOU RETURN UNTO THE GROUND" Gen 3:19 ..... this tells us the truth :smiley90: the eternal life force was in God , it is not in food or anything else why ? because if you read on you find out the answer " FOR OUT OF IT YOU WERE TAKEN FOR DUST YOU ARE ,AND UNTO DUST SHALL YOU RETURN "

    :smiley90: It was the power of God to keep the dust alive , that being gone , to dust man returns . God did also curse the serpent to crawl upon the dust of the earth

    Jesus Christ is now our "tree of life" as recorded in the book of revelations and Jesus is also our bread of life as recorded in the book of John chapter 6 .
  8. Thank you Jesus for sacrificing your self for us. Amen
  9. I may disagree with a couple people here, but my clear understanding from scripture is that God chose us. What that means is that He caused us to believe - we are dead in our sins completely - that means even the ability to believe. Belief is a gift of the Holy Spirit. To say that we have the power in us to believe seems to me to be close to semi-pelagianism, a heresy of the early church (basically, we "reach out" to God, and he uses that to save us."

    No, we are not like a sick man, who needs a cure - we are DEAD, bones and dust, and Christ breaths the life of the Spirit in us giving us the ability to believe.
  10. It's up to you to believe in God! It just takes one small choice. :) :)
    God is very happy that you are a Christian!!!!! :D
  11. AMEN!!!! That's awesome!!!!
  12. Does one choose to believe in God, or doe God, the Authour and Perfector of our Faith, who chooses us, give the gift of faith as a free gift to His lost sheep? Those who cannot believe, will they? Those who will not believe, can they? When we get to heaven, we'll be praising Jesus who saves dead, sick, lost, filthy sinners and sanctifies them... People in hell will have only themselves to blame. In fact, if it were not for the Lord's mercies, we would be consumed like Sodom and Gemorrah. Praise God for His Glorious Grace. I can't earn it. If i think i deserved Christ's death on the cross, have i seen right, or do i need the Holy Spirit to convince me of my sin? If the Holy Spirit does not convince me of my sin then who does? If He does not wash me and regenerate me then who does? If i cannot come to Jesus unless the Father draws me, then how else can i come?

    John 6:63-71
    “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. 64 “But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. 65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father.”
    Peter’s Confession of Faith
    66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67 So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” 68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 “We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.” 70 Jesus answered them, “Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?” 71 Now He meant Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going to betray Him.

    some can't hear, it is sad, and i feel like God's Spirit moved me to weep over them, but they love unrighteousness, and have ears and eyes and hearts that do not understand, and they cannot hear His Voice because they are not His Sheep...yet i was just llike them, but worse, and until God by His Grace opened my eyes, i was blind as they but more rebellious. But all things are possible with God. If someone can hear and come; LET THEM. If they cannot hear, you never know if one day they will hear, and that seed may not be in vain, only God can cause things to grow. Or maybe the birds eat it up. This I know, it is a mystery how the Spirit works likee the wind blowing. Believe in Jesus? Follow Him, beware of an empty profession. His Word His Truth His Waym, anything less than entering into a relationship with Jesus is not entering the door, head knowledge may be seeking but not striving to enter a relationship.. Many have theology right but no relationship, but not to be despised, the Lord may have them learn and learn until one day :) Love Jesus. Love Him and then know the heavenly doctrines that will humble you before Him and not puff you up...but you will despise the proud ones that point a thumb at the chest and says 'I can even of Myself!' We love Him because He first loved us with the love that He loved us in the Beloved from the God of all Comfort by which we are comforted :)
    But, love Jesus, starts by learning of Him, from Him, knowing Him, being close to Him, seeing your sin and feeling your vileness, loving His Grace, more sin in the light, deeper repentance and self-abhorence, deeper love of Jesus, more sanctifying work of the Spirit.
    Say, do you love Jesus? At one time i didn't, then i did. Sometimes do you find your love growing sweeter, sometimes ashamedly colder? Pray top Jesus, Lord Jesus, please may i know what the height and depth and breadth of Your love is for me? And may i be kept from sinning against thee, and because of it seek to please You more? God will honor what honors Him. Lord Jesus, take my life, do with me what Thou will...Lord, take this heart, breath into it Thy Will, may my heart gently submit to what You want, for Jesus Sake and in His Holy Blessed Name, amen bless us Dear Lord after Thy Will, amen
  13. Well, in many ways I see our faith as an individual and special relationship between God. Everyone comes to the Lord in different ways.

    Everyone has had some way they have come to God - maybe it was not the same as me or you but it was their way of understanding and meeting the Lord.

    When I first came to know God I was in a very, very difficult time of my life. I was having a self-identity crisis, dealing with neighborhood issues, and just not knowing who I was, period. It took me at least seven years to get over this. And I remember that when I stepped out of that old, nasty, horrible environment, it seemed as if my faith in God just...happened. Either I was so stressed out my brain did not remember anything, but I do remember the day I realized the Lord. I was standing in the bathroom, looking at myself in the mirror, and I saw myself. I saw me. I saw who I was. And ever since then it has been a continual growth in God.

    So, in my opinion, everyone is different. Some people have to have a traumatic experience or a life crisis to get them to see the Lord. Some people find the Lord just through sitting down outside watching the world go by. It all depends on who you are. God knows your heart. God knows what will awaken you and lead you down the right path.


  14. Auweia! A true calvinist here!
    Yeah, I know there is a minority of low-key ones who do not hate - I had a wonderful pastor friend who was one of them.
    Of course, with some 8000+ denoms in this country, there is a sizeable variety of calvinist/reformed denoms too.

    However, the number of hardcore calvinists is growing rapidly, has been since the 1980s when a particularly vicious strain invaded several decent churches I was attending at the time. Those churches, along with my friends, all turned RECON! Because I didn`t go along with it, those friends turned against me.
    RECONS are the most extreme calvinists who believe in taking over the government, and ultimately the world.
    They would like to re-institute the Levitical Laws, complete with death penalty for a list of offenses, including heresy!
    Guess WHO defines heresy?
    Many RECONS do not even consider other "flavors" of calvinists christians!

    You are right, foucachon, there are only two kinds of people in the calvinist worldview : the chosen/elect [calvinists] and the unchosen/unelect stuff [the rest of humanity].
    You seem fairly mellow, but I could be deadwrong about that, wouldn`t be the first time.
    The basic rule for interacting with most [not all] christians, not just calvinists, is : do not cross them. This is my lifelong personal experience.
    I have been threatened many times and accused of bizarre things, such as being a witch!
    Since you live in Moscow, you probably know the [in]famous RECON calvinist pastor there who wants to officially bring back slavery!
    There are many others like him, you can find them all over the internet, as well as in real life.
    They`ve put up many hate websites - for example : try googling "imprecatory prayers" might be delighted!
  15. (All emphasis mine)

    Jhn 6:44 - No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day
    Jhn 6:65 - And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

    John 15:16 - " did NOT choose me, but I CHOSE YOU..."
    Eph 2:8 - "For it is BY grace you are saved THROUGH FAITH, and this (this 'faith') is NOT OF YOURSELVES - IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD"


    foucachon, I don't believe it matters quite so much that you disagree with a "couple people here". What matters is that what you say IS in agreement with what the SCRIPTURE SAYS!
    I, for one, would rather AGREE WITH THE SCRIPTURES, than with the doctrines of MEN.

  16. GodSpeaks ,

    re: “It is our choice whether or not we believe God or not believe Him “

    Is there any implication in that comment that you think that a person has the ability to consciously CHOOSE to believe that someone or something does or doesn’t exist, or that a certain proposition is or isn’t true?
  17. I smell Election Doctrine here.

    Joh 6:64 But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
    Joh 6:65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

    There are a few forms of this Election Doctrine. The Calvinist are the hard core form of it. The doctrine makes God out to be a respecter of persons, and the Arguments go on and on.

    Jesus already nailed the issue this people have. "They Believed NOT"

    The human spirit was created in the image of God. The human spirit has the ability to have faith, or the ability to believe something.

    Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

    It would be impossible for someone to believe in something they have yet to hear, and they still have a choice on believing or not. Does God have to draw them? yes.............. The Word has to be preached, and shared. God is the Word, was God.

    Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

    Jesus said that Whosoever will believe on him. should not perish. Whosoever is everyone on the planet. All have a choice to believe or not, that have heard the Word.

    2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

    any, means everyone..............

    God does not pick and choose who can believe. The Word is powerful enough to get anyone's attention.

    Be the one that built his house on the rock, and not the Sand, being a hearer only.

    Be Blessed.
  18. Both.

    We have the choice whether to believe God is who He says He is, and also the choice to believe what He says is true or not.
  19. GodSpeaks,

    re: "Both."

    Perhaps you can help me then. I have never been able to consciously CHOOSE any of the beliefs that I have and I would like to be able to do that - for example to effect a belief that it is possible for me to become a more compassionate person. Since you seem to say that you can consciously CHOOSE to believe things, I wonder if you might explain how you do it. What do you do at the last moment to instantly change your one state of belief to another? What is it that you do that would allow you to say, “OK, at this moment I have a lack of belief that ‘x’ exists or is true, but I CHOOSE to believe that ‘x’ exists or is true and now instantly at this new moment I do believe that ‘x’ exists or is true?

    Maybe you could use something like leprechauns to demonstrate your technique. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, a leprechaun is “a fairy peculiar to Ireland, who appeared in the form of an old man of minute stature, wearing a cocked hat and a leather apron.” So, assuming that you don’t already have a belief in them, how about right now, while you are reading this, CHOOSE to believe - be convinced without a doubt - that they exist. Now that you believe in leprechauns, my question is, how did you do it? How did you make the instantaneous transition from lack of belief to belief?

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