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Page 229

Freedom means "to be free from outside persuasion or force; to freely do that which one desires." When speaking of God's decree and governing providence, it is important to remember that every evil deed decreed and governed by God is done freely by the person committing the action. He performs his sinful deed because he desires to.

How would you respond to the following persons' viewpoints?

    "Certainly, I stole several thousands of dollars from that millionaire. But my deed was in God's decree and providence. Probably my theft helped to teach the millionaire a much needed lesson. God had His purpose with my action. Besides, nothing I could or could not do can change His decree or providence."

    "Sure, I missed certain days when I should have been working. Yes, I will admit I wasted several hours when I was trying to establish my business. But, God must have decreed that I would not be successful, because in His providence, He directed it so that my business has always done poorly. God must have decreed that I should always be poor."

    "Of course, I have never prayed or read a lot, but religious books just don't interest me that much. It must be that God has decreed that I will be lost, because nothing has happened in His providence to change things in my life. This is not my fault. I can't convert myself! If God has decreed to save me, He will direct things to produce the necessary change in my life."

What is clearly wrong in these three viewpoints? Why?


But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

- Genesis 50:20

And truly the Son of man goeth, as it was determined: but woe unto that man by whom He is betrayed!

- Luke 22:22


What is the difference between something being in God's providence or in His favor? Why is this difference important when considering the viewpoints expressed on this page?


The secret thing belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.

- Deuteronomy 29:29


While very few may express themselves in the words of these three accounts, how can people testify of these beliefs in actions?

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