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CHAPTER 3

Stagnation and Servitude are not Only Economic

and Social, but Spiritual and Moral

The Australian, April 3, 2006,

ABC News, April 3, 2006

News 374

 

SEE ALSO

The Biblical Workman Appendix 3,

Light of Dawn Ch. 2,
Lord of Life
Ch. 3,
 8, 9
More Marvels ...
Ch. 4, *6

A letter in The Australian, April 3, 2006, includes certain statements which may be worth preserving.

It deals with 'the question of Muslim integration' and declares this concerning a discussion which had interested the letter writer:

"The point is  that our Australian muslim community, at present only about 1.5 percent of the population, has spawned a minority of such belligerence and so iconoclastic towards everything non-Muslim, as to cause significant social stresses and trains in our basically easy-going society. One can hardly turn on the TV or open a newspaper without some Muslim figuring prominently in the news, usually for all the wrong reasons. If the figure reaches 4 or 5 per cent and there is no real integration, we could be faced with a very uncomfortable level of aggression, lawlessness and confrontation. This is not racism. The alarming reality is that, unlike other migrant waves, it is the second generation who are most likely to display this behaviour, as has happened in Europe. The power of radical Islamic theocracy, where it can get an unchallenged entry, should never be underestimated."

At the same time, there has been news of a Federal Government interest in considering the matter of hate, divisiveness and incitation to violence.

While Tony Blair has been talking of the case of Iraq and Afghanistan, where he declared that there was a "titanic struggle" to be free of oppression, stagnation and servitude, is there such a freedom elsewhere ? (cf. Beauty for Ashes Ch. 3)

This case in the Middle East is covered to some extent in The Australian, but also in the ABC News, which includes these words. Italics are used for signalisation for our purposes, and are not in the original.

 

CANBERRA, Australia Mar 27, 2006 (AP)

British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Monday pledged to keep British troops in Iraq and Afghanistan until those countries are stabilized. (Italics are used for emphasis, not in the original.)

"If the going is tough, we tough it out," Blair told a rare joint session of Australia's Parliament.

Blair told lawmakers that the "immediate threat is from Islamist extremism," which he said was "not a passing spasm of anger but a global ideology at war with us and our way of life."

Britain and Australia were the only two nations to send troops to fight alongside U.S. forces in the invasion of Iraq three years ago and both countries still have forces in the country and in Afghanistan fighting Taliban and al-Qaida insurgents.

"If we want to secure our way of life, there is no alternative but to fight for it," he said. "That means standing up for our values not just in our own countries but the world over."

In a key foreign policy speech, Blair said the struggle was not just against "those who hate us," but also against opponents who believe Britain and its allies fight for their values selectively.

"This struggle is about justice and fairness as well as security and prosperity," he said. "And in truth today there is no prosperity without security and no security without justice. That is the consequence of an interconnected world."

He pointed to recent elections in both Iraq and Afghanistan as symbols of the values he was advocating and said those countries were "engaged in a titanic struggle to be free of a legacy of oppression, stagnation and servitude."

Here then we see Islamic extremism as a philosophy but also as a basis for war being waged against nations with substantial freedoms; and it is ideological as he presents it. Elections in Iraq and Afghanistan he sees in terms of justice, not least, and he esteems there to be a huge conflict concerning freedom from OPPRESSION, STAGNATION and SERVITUDE.

 

It is then a spiritual thing, in essence, a matter of justice, of freedom so that you are not being oppressed in clamping restrictiveness, so that you are not being constrained beyond the spiritual selectivity which is yours, by mere bullying. If that is not in the core of his meaning, it would be hard to find indeed!

Very well. He too is against a vocal group using violence and misusing law to force people to be less than human, to be fiefs of some dictatorship; and he desires justice and liberty.

With the letter writer in The Australian, then, he appears, at the basic level, to have much in common.

It is easy to say these things; but it is far harder to preserve them. One of the reasons for this is the question of definition. It can be so abused that whole fleets of ships can travel through the holes unwholesomely left, by the unfounded foundlings which obtuse philosophy can beget. In the spurious use of the name of liberty and justice, both can be bound and gagged.

IS IT oppression to say that if your words of reasoned affirmation offend some religious sensibility, then you are guilty before law ? Is it misuse of liberty so to exact, to level a gun or a law at you if you speak in all sincerity and goodwill, your mind  ? If not, that would apprehend Jesus and the apostles, the prophets and Moses at once for injury, death or in prison. Victoria is not giving a good example here, even eavesdroppers in churches being able to level charges if the result is not to the religious ear of informers! As to liberty for thought and pursuit of truth, unless it reforms, it appears to be growing close to irrelevant in such a struggle (cf. Cascade of Truth, Torrent of Mercy Ch.   10 (freedom, force and faith), NEWS 156 (esp. Victoria), Pall of Smoke and Diamond of Joy Ch. 10 , Galloping Events Ch. 7, *2).

You do not have to have a gun in order to oppress.

It is violence against you for someone to tell you that you have influenza ? If it is done maliciously to unsettle you, perhaps; but if a doctor says it ? or if someone states it to be so, based on evidence that he deems sure, and for your intended good ? Is it not a case of servitude to refuse people the liberty to declare what they believe to be true provided they do it with all good will and hope and not in hate, which becomes, when directed towards people as such, readily an implement of evil!

Is freedom of speech then to be sacrificed to social servitude!

We recall the British journalist who could scarcely believe what appeared to be happening to his nation. Is it possible, he recently mused, that this newspaper of which he spoke  is declining to publish certain material because of physical fear for its Staff!

The land that would fight for freedom on the beaches was retreating in the Press! The point was this: that

if you cannot freely and even critically discuss issues,

because of fear, whether of government sanctions or physical violence, or injurious violence of some sort of attack on your body or liberty,

so that truth becomes a hostage to social address, security or comfort:

then the human spirit is sold!

If it is to the State, that is the case; if to outside terrorists, then that!

What then is the liberty which is to be retained ? Is it liberty to kill ? Scarcely. Is it liberty to wound then, with implements to reduce your power of speech, as at Calvary, when they wanted to suppress Christ with the only means in their power, while even those at His permission ? Yet His permission did not attenuate their guilt! He had no desire for physical force to repel those whose spirits were sold in His sale, for the truth was thereby shown, and He meanwhile prayed for and achieved the forgiveness of those of them and indeed of us, who receive His salvation, thus vicariously achieved!

What would silence Christ, the prophets and the apostles, if the guilty verdict were to be applied with force, would then be anti-Christian!

Whether judicial or criminal, however, violence is useless before truth; and in the case of Jesus Christ, it could not even prevent His own, long predicted and arithmetically precisely fulfilled resurrection on the third day! Christ was God's final word! Man the prince, the autonomous, the ruler of man, becomes man without mandate, man with manacles for truth, in any age, whether in killing Christians, imprisoning them or simply assailing the truth, spoken in all heart and goodwill, with all concern and care, with reason and with grounds! (cf. Ch. 2 above).

What then if you want to crush the human spirit by making it a matter of 'violence' to say things which upset the delicate spirit of the listener ? Perhaps Churchill then should have been put in prison, for many would have thought him, and did, war-mongering in much of his preliminary endeavours, and this might have upset their philosophical or religious sensibilities. Then instead of fighting Hitler, they could have fought Churchill on some beach or law court!

Perhaps then you should abort leadership at birth, and substituting law for logic, castrate candour, limit righteousness and make what is convenient into your State sanctioned god!

This is not to say too much in terms of some of the limits which the supine ingloriously push, even as if for the sake of a twisted irony, doing so in the name of liberty or justice or some other concoction which breaks the arm of meaning, and leaves it hanging lose by the side of the State concerned.

The fact is this: that when HATRED of people is not the point, but their welfare, when FREEDOM to challenge and criticise is not a grouchiness that loves to molest, but a desire for truth and liberty which endures because it is well-founded, that when issues are at stake for which application of mind and heart is necessary: then to prevent discussion, to mischaracterise goodwill, to bring servitude and oppression into force as a substitute for the presentation of thought, or the indication of need, this is simply a profound arrogance.

It is that time-dishonoured habit of man in striding like a prince onto the tarmac, and receiving bows as he struts, and suppressing as he acknowledges, should be discredited. It is never fitting for man to become or pretend to make himself into some bigoted tyrant, whether by one or by many, some a little god without glory, and one who loves the centre stage. Democracy can invent such a result, by having most sanction it, or those who perform it! Liberty is not to be found in following mathematics alone, but its source; people, but their basis; opinion, but the truth. When the truth becomes a virtual legal synonym for what most want, then the nation groans, and a darkness medieval in its clanking shadows, bustling in its self-conceit, brings but a new new shadow on the spirit of man.

It means that God Himself, for He is there (cf. SMR), is to be drafted into a bay where as far as the ACTIONS of mankind is concerned, or a nation amidst it, He is refused permission to speak. It is not this man or that: it is the treatment of all by the shameless arrogance of some, be they 51% or 99% of the people. Having the things done that you want, in disposing of national powers and productions is one thing; having ceaseless combat with  the liberty to explore and to criticise, to assess and the declare, to challenge and to reason, to sustain and to answer, this is another.

One is to resolve issues; the other is to implement the ultimate capacities of man by man, for man, at the will of man. It is like a cancer to the spirit of man, and by its unseemly, unspiritual and godless self-elevation, a pronouncement of hostility to holiness, self-aggrandisement the limit for man, imposed by man for man. He becomes the ultimate, like a toadstool that reeks, making foul the very air that is breathed, a pollution most horrible, the acrid fumes of its baseless endeavours forever shameless, contemptible, its arrogance reaching to the skies for the normal rebuff!

It will of course come as in II Thessalonians 2, Revelation 13, 19, Daniel 7, and its name, at the ultimate evil flowering, is the antichrist. It is intolerant, bears nothing, believes only itself, imposes its platitudes, fears the truth and seeks to suppress it, governs for glory self-made, self-taught and self-admired. This is the very crown of donkeys, and finale of Satan's little fling as you see in the above passages.

At another level, it  would be like the Judge who tells his 'tale' in Gilbert and Sullivan, calling more and more loudly, LET ME SPEAK! but there, he was for a time not be permitted, for the cast would imitate him, while he roars, saying, Yes, let him speak - thus making it hard for him to do so! In this case however, the cast would be far more belligerent, oppressive, and far more interested in subjugation, and would more simply say, NO DO NOT SPEAK! Believing a lie, they connive with it; suppressing the truth, they seek that they, not it, will endure, the ultimate and most ugly of survivalists, arch enemy of all revivalists, desiring to turn the water of refreshment off at the mains.

If issues cannot be debated for fear of the rewards of intolerance, the oppressions of convenience or even the slanders of motivation, then gone is the society; it is in prison, self-made.

bullet If then survival is more important than truth, social cohesion (No division! say some),
then in all truth, what is the point of survival, to live in darkness and spiritual servitude!

If CHRIST had decided NOT to tell the truth, say for His immediate personal survival -
a very clear issue at that time -
then it would not have been fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet Isaiah
(emphasis added):

"BECAUSE He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth", THEREFORE, "They made His grace with the wicked..."

Had HE used violence, which is not the divine way for instilling truth at the outset, He could have raised angelic or even human hosts, and won. He did not. Truth was not of that ilk. It is not established by the punitive violences, the authorised vengeances, the brutalising impositions of man. Indeed, human history is in no small measure, a vast panorama in which the Lord is showing the truth by illustrating the feeble faint-heartedness, the light-headedness or heavy-handedness of error, in its OUTCOMES and manifestations.

Thus, for example, Hitler Youth was not really so good, as you see in the end of it! In history very valiantly, God is declaring above the vociferous shoutings and inclement declarations of man in his own name, truth by His word, and its impact. He shows what shall be in the income, which then becomes an outcome, showing wisdom as well as realities in history which the blind could read, if they but ceased shutting their eyes (cf. Matthew 13:14-15, cf. Ephesians 3:9-10, 1:10).

Again, had Christ used DECEIT, then He could have said, quite simply, instead of the fact as in Mark 16:62, YES I AM, rather, No, I am not. If He had hidden His deity, then man might have spared His humanity! But He did not do so. Survival is the stuff of rats, or mice; truth is in the power of God, and Christ declared HIMSELF to be it! If He had allowed His identity to be hidden, then His biological life could have been spared, but His reality would have been sullied. Truth cannot be sold, except by traitors to the race, its place and its potential; it must be bought (Proverbs 23:23).

If God were, in other words (John 8:58) to HIDE His reality, His identity, then untruth might live a little more than it does, before the judgment. He does not. He DOES allow His servants (as foretold in John 16:2 and Matthew 10, and 24), to be killed; but He does NOT allow truth to be covered up. The beauty of man lies not least in this, that being in the 'image' or fellowship potential with God, he has access to truth. Breach of this liberty by man readily becomes assault on God.

Reality is a cruel impact, and love seeks to avoid this for those who, being human and astray, ask for that impact. Is it cruel or violent, seeing a man clinging by his finger nails over a precipice, to indicate the peril, if for some reason he does not perceive it, and even to try to help, if he permits ?
Is speech sometimes necessary to this end ? Is not the biblical position repeatedly this, that IF you do NOT warn someone in peril before the Lord, then you are prone to inherit the guilt! (Ezekiel 18, Proverbs 24:11).

Is love to become illegal ?

It has been, throughout history, the case that many see what is impending and try to warn, by what is true, and try to help others to see it; and nowhere is this more evident than in the prophetical writings of the Bible, or in Jesus Christ, who is their culmination and whose Spirit is their source (I Peter 1:10-11). Is it then not simply a denial of that genius for liberty which biblical Christianity provides, to seek to suppress honest, loving and sincere presentation of a message, whatever it might imply ?

Did the preacher write the Bible ? Did he create Jesus Christ ? or is history to be spat out for the sake of those who refuse to learn by it ? is arrogance to indict sincerity or even, in grossest pillage of truth, call that love which is concerned for others, as if it were hatred, which nevertheless in all benevolence seeks good for one and all!

Such nevertheless is the way of it in all dictatorship, whether this be for erroneously conceived glory, as with Hitler and hosts of which he is merely a type, or human self-love: by violence, legal or physical, they SUPPRESS and bring into SERVITUDE, to use the word of Tony Blair, what a better approach liberates. But does it ? What is this better approach ?

Democracy alone cannot do it. You can elect for example, as has recently been DONE, a Hamas which desires first off to obliterate Israel. In death, freedom on this earth, has certain limits, as some may still be able to see... a democratic election, then, disposed to level liberty, and with it life as an extra, to the ground ?

Even if the minority is by law to be preserved, HOW is it to be preserved ? Shut up in prison, whether literally or by denying them free speech, lest the violence-people be embarrassed! This DEMOCRATIC result is not servitude ? What then IS servitude if it is not being made a slave and subdued by force, where truth is not above it!

There is no rule but that of God which can in the end DARE to give freedom so that you can even DENY Him, in word or deed or life itself, and yet continue alive and vocal. The glorious liberty of God is not endangered by lies and fraud, force and violence. It merely exposes sin in the process, and faith as well!

This immunity is for several reasons, amongst which the following figure. Thus, when TRUTH is in view, force is not necessary in order to sustain it. Reason riots in the grip of folly, and this is one basis of Biblical Christian Apologetics, that such is the case*1 . Force, whether for the institution of servitude in the place of liberty, or for the licence to wrest a land, trading man's soul for some short-sighted concept of comfort or survival, is not requisite for truth. It IS a requisite for error, and the latter freely uses it. It has no other option. It cannot win otherwise. When judgment supervenes, truth has had its day, and imposes its result: but it is GOD who does it!

WHEN meanwhile the human spirit is given freedom of expression, then solid spiritual reality comes where the spirit of man, finding the power of God, resides freely. Love is free! Lack of love is the final cause of hatred, since God is love (I John 4:7-8): it is attempt at His evacuation by force or convenience which is the actual hatred, for it removes from the scene, as far as humanly possible and by external means, which is a certain distance for a certain time, the very love of God.  For those who willingly so live without it, this disease of the spirit of man sustains itself with whatever simplistic or superficial substitute appeals, whether pleasure, or comfort, or self-congratulation, or wealth, or economic prosperity or intolerant cushions or accommodating placebos it wishes, as if to imagine that  where truth is excluded by law, or force more direct, one can reside plushily.

It is where truth is free because it needs no force, where love is present since God is love, that hatred and lies can be forfeited happily. Then liberty has its source, meaning and aim, and is not another name for muting truth in the interests of numbers.

Naturally, since man is defiled (Ephesians 4:17-19), an alien before God without redemption, and hence not amenable in himself to solutions to his spiritual state, there is always an endeavour to do SOMETHING other than be true to the spirit of truth.

Thus you can institutionalise religion and make it that of a nation, which then USES that religion in order to glorify itself, thus defeating the reality by misnaming it!

You can verbalise it, and pretend it is for you, while manifestly having neither sincerity nor mind for it. You can dogmatise in your own strength, and playing God, in or out of a church or other religious body, sacrifice the people to your pride, and how many have done this, from the crucifixion of Christ to the Inquisition, to the irrational and calamitous calumnies and violences of Communism (cf. SMR 965, and see with that the Communist failures scientifically in pp. 614, 925, 971, and the enormities in Highway to Hell, Aviary of Idolatry, News 37,  97, 98) or by the radical fight to intimidate or rule outrages of false prophets.

Of these,  this world has had many, as Christ foretold (Matthew 24:24), whose excursions of effrontery toward man, whose intimidation and self-glorying in an abyss of emptiness,  know no bounds but that of arrest. As Paul said of such at the first, measuring themselves by themselves they are not wise (II Cor. 11).

This is merely to abuse God! You can do this the Romanist way with the Inquisition, though it is forbidden in John 18:36 and Matthew 36; or the nationalistic way, making a nation's riches a ground for religious appeals to fight for it. You can do it the Islamic way by cutting off hands or heads or intimidating hearts, who are to be killed if they change their 'religion' as though it were not a matter of freedom, and as though the love of the life of a man were to be made instrumental to the opinions, let alone unsupported, of his fellows. This is no love, but lashing! That has been shown in various times, ways and places, already*2.

It is when a nation loses it nerve, or finds its heart in its stomach, that it suppresses benevolently- inclined, free debate. At times the due exercise of liberty in life MUST involve, as with Christ as seen in Matthew 23, strong words, which resemble the scalpel of the surgeon. Yet it is better to speak frankly to one's friend than to have him get syphilis, for example, or Aids! The RESULT of not speaking has to be weighed against the manner of speech. TO ASSUME this or that, and then make laws, is not the essence of freedom, but of suppression.

However when a nation is willing to sustain liberty, as was Britain for so long in so much, then true greatness can more readily come; and when the name of Christ is not forced, but made a basis both logical and spiritual, for human relationships, believe in Him or not, in terms of justice and mercy, then as with Britain, greatness, for all the declivities and errors that at times went with it, can indeed arise. Here the human spirit is no more made a product of the legal mincer, or the intimidatory forces of repression, which not having truth, must, to survive, as perhaps in some corrupted trade Union with rich officials who desire continuance of their place and credo,  or society of nobles interested in retaining power, use various kinds of force.

To confuse sturdy talk, for love, backed by truth, with violence is so sad and complex a hallucination that a society needs to be far advanced towards ruin to be susceptible to it! It is ONLY when you are INCITING to PHYSICAL violence as your objective, or using it, that the issues of freedom at once intervene, as issues of spiritual liberty and human reality in a land. In addition, of course, when a person indicates a desire not to hear, though to a point, a friendly person may persist a little, to ensure it is not just a slight initial aversion to facing an issue, then in liberty the one so declining is honoured by NOT hearing.

As with any kindly relationship, you may reason somewhat in the hope of awakening your friend,  the object of your concern, or the one whom you are loving for the sake of the Creator and Redeemer of man, and liberally provide for it. Yet when the decisive word is spoken, FREEDOM works the other way, and the party is left alone. In the electronic case, he has no need to come;p but if he does, then as to a house, come he may freely.

Again, one may call again on someone to whom one is presenting, for example, the Gospel, unless at the outset expressly forbidden to do so;  but similarly, if ultimately the answer is no, or the request is made not to act again, that then becomes the responsibility of the one who speaks and says NO THANKS! Freedom does not need to PUSH. Consider the actions of Christ! ... consider for example the case of the rich young ruler in Mark 10:17ff.. He RAN, he FELL DOWN before Christ, he SOUGHT earnestly what to do for eternal life, but being rich and having this an impediment, he preferred this to eternal life, and went mourning. There is no record that Christ ran after him. God has His own ways...

Force is always irrelevant here. This is so whether it be by governmental sanctions, putting those who speak in love for truth, into prison, fining them, killing them or whatever other violence is in mind; or by those who in parallel, actually kill or wound or maim, or threaten physical force on their own account, or that of their organisation. In each case, force is being used to suppress by arrogance, with no concern for truth, only for comfort, survival or making all one. To do this not by truth, but by law, is merely to make of the nation which does it, a terrorist nation, using prison as an implement, just as terrorists use bombs.

 

NOTES

 

*1  EXCURSION IN LIBERTY, LOVE and SOVEREIGNTY

See for example:

SMR Chs. 1, 3, 5, 8-10

REASON, REVELATION and the REDEEMER,

SCIENTIFIC METHOD, SATANIC METHOD and the MODEL OF SALVATION,

CELESTIAL HARMONY for the TERRESTRIAL HOST,

THE GODS OF NATURALISM HAVE NO GO!

Not only does reason relish truth, without antinomy or alogism, and find it exclusively in the biblical depiction and the Christ whom it reveals, before and after He came on time to do what had been for a millenium in many minute ways prescribed, all beyond the touch of mere humanity, or requiring less than deity, in every field: but even internally, the biblical harmony and consistency is so intense as to be a revelatory exercise in itself, to ponder it. For this, for example see with the Celestial Harmony ...  the Predestination Quintet,

ON PREDESTINATION and FOREKNOWLEDGE,
LIBERTY and NECESSITY,
RESPONSIBILITY, DUTY and CREATIVITY.

Here, not least in such sites as Great Execrations, Great Enervations, Greater Grace Chs.   7 and   9, it is found that the precondition of liberty is love, divine love, and only then is it possible to both void and avoid the cast of superiority and inferiority as determinants, for then the self is not the limit, and its composure is not the criterion, nor is an estimate of this the basis, as of a datum inviolate by its nature; for God is no respecter of persons, and would have all to be saved and repeatedly says so (as in I Timothy 2, Colossians 1, II Peter 3:9, Ezekiel 33:11, in various times and ways, inveterate in His intensity).

When love desires, almighty power resides and restraint in love abides, then is man free indeed, and so was Adam; but having fallen, man is so obliterative of truth in spiritual things, being a rebel (as in Romans 5:1-2, Ephesians 2:1-12, 4:17-19), being soiled into controls and vexations including the pride that he is not, that only a sovereign divine act CAN release him. Yet only the God who is love does not please Himself (cf. Romans 15:1ff.), nor does love seeks its own fulfilment as if this were the basis, but seeks that ALL be reconciled, since it is the truth.

Then man's liberty is not invaded, nor is it sovereignly sufficient, and in this double negation before the divine affirmative, lies liberty.

God who knows man better than he knows himself, is stopped by nothing, and having the only merit in the affair, seizes past the delimitations of psychology and finds not the plunder to be carried off, as in the vexations affairs of the nations, but those who in His knowledge respond, though in themselves their pathology paralyses.

PREFERENCE for darkness is HIS divine declaration as the ground of exclusion from grace, and this in the very view of His so loving the world that He gave His only begotten Son. Indeed, when God declares, man is well advised to listen. It also solves the whole problem of freedom, predestination being its answer, not its concussion!

Man, defiled, cannot contemplate God objectively, though his equipment is adequate to find Him; so God, desirous, releases His own, knowing them neither by merit, for He knows past all sin, nor by lust, for love is chaste, nor because of their innate superiority, for when you see past sin there is no variation in the image in essential human perspicuity. He knows where grace finds residence and declares I WOULD but YOU WOULD NOT! in this or that way, continually throughout the Bible (cf. SMR Appendix B). THIS is the condemnation, that light has come, even the light just shown in John 1-3, not some other light, the Light of the World, for the context does not suddenly avoid and void what it has been at such long pains to present and in 3:16 to highlight, but this light is that of this One, the incarnate and changeless Christ (Hebrews 13:8). It is the preference not to have Him which damns, for He is the only Saviour from the damage which severs.

The light is for the WORLD (as in Colossians 1:19ff.), indeed beyond it; it is sent by the motivation of LOVE for the world (I Timothy 2:1ff.) distributively, and while the result is foreknown and ordained, in the ordination there is the same love as in the application; for God does not change and is as Christ showed Him to be (John14). Such is what the Bible actually teaches, and this resolves all the antinomies of philosophy and all the mindless confusions of man. It also saves sinners, this love, through its grace and cost-bearing, and there are no preferential pools, for Christ did not come to save righteous people, too good to be true literally, inherently divinely preferable: but SINNERS.

In this way, with these concepts and with this divine concern, the Bible resolves the problem of the meaning of man, his direct and genuine responsibility and the nature of his freedom in the image of God which, though defiled and inoperable relative to God Himself, is not defunct and remains relevant. Hence the endless parade of poignant appeals from deity, who, as with Christ the second person of the Trinity when on earth, deplores that they have not listened to Him (Luke 19:42ff., Matthew 23:37ff., cf. SMR Appendix B), and that as a result of this fact,  they must suffer judgment, Christ  Himself, the Lord weeping the while. Deity is not torn apart; His grief is that which confronts what has been warned and will not listen, as so often.

bullet He will not go further, for love does not;
 
bullet but He will and does go to the Cross, to pay for the recipients of His grace,
 
bullet for at payment in truth, love does not baulk!

That God is love, and in love acts, His plans those of love, His program so instilled with mercy, His reach unlimited as in Colossians 1:19ff., Ephesians 1:11, has results. It means that it is not self-satisfaction as in any mere power, but the welfare of those sought which is the concern, and this not in mere temporal content but eternal domain: man is not a manipulee, a resultant in his destiny of mere desire, selective in its mode for the sake of outside volition. Divine sovereignty is satisfied, for love does not force, but would go to any length, short of breach of integrity, to reach; and this  it did, from explicit and express incarnation to Calvary itself.

Human liberty is not annulled, merely beyond man's own reach in this affair, but not beyond God's own comprehensive knowledge, and predestination is the guarantee of God who is love, that love has had and will have in history to the point of destiny itself,  the outcomes which are apt for its embracive desire, purity and integrity, without invasion of man. In operation, it is therefore wholly sovereign, in preliminary outreach, wholly pure and without limit, in result it has the few who tread the narrow way. WHOM He foreknew He predestinated is what the Bible declares, and this is the truth. It is NOT their works or meritorious actions in any way which are relevant, resultants of what they are (Ephesians 2:1-10, Romans 9:11,16); but the  God of freedom freely knows who are His own. With Him, there is no darkness; darkness is for what absconds.

Thus does the Bible have a coherent, consistent and overwhelmingly integral approach which resolves all problems in this area which anything short of such a God with such a practicality would and does fail to meet.

This in turn verifies its truth, in this arena, just as every other has the same outcome. The word of God IS truth, and Christ IS the way, and foolish indeed the one who ignores His entreaties (Proverbs 1), devastates his or her own design, and far worse if possible, assails the divine integrity which has loved, paid and sought, and misses none in whom His love comes to reside, forces none who hate, despise or depart from Him, and reigns over a kingdom of liberated souls, not in the misfit misnomers of a vehement Communism or Nazism, but in the marvellous ways of objective truth, God as a Father and Creator, man when now home again, as redeemed.

 

*2

See for example:

More Marvels ... Ch. 4,

SMR pp. 50ff., 91, 1080ff., 1186A,

Divine Agenda Ch. 6,

Bon Voyage Ch. 2, *10A, *11A.,

Lord of Life Ch. 3.