Predestination and free will?

Ever since I was growing up in the Reformed and then Presbyterian Churches of Australia, I have wondered why churches that espouse predestination have a ‘freewill’ offering (dig for money) at every worship service.

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9 thoughts on “Predestination and free will?

  1. This is funny. At my reformed/evangelical church in the US we solved this problem by making 10% the implied obligatory offering. My father was an usher, I remember helping him count the money as a kid. My favorite was finding the empty envelopes, people who wanted to be seen by others as making a donation in church, but nothing actually given. They were quite rare, but instead of making me angry I kind of liked them.

  2. It is not predestination as we it.It is as God sees it. This is because God sees the beginning, and the end as if it is one, knowing all things,and we cannot only seeing the time that we are in.

  3. You may jest, but surely the infiltration of such terminology into God’s Most True Church only proves “how wily Satan can be in spreading false teachings”:

    As Hartford Community Church Pastor Jeremy Galan explains:
    ‘”We’d just taken one of our so-called ‘free will offerings’ after a singing group from Liberty University came to perform for us… We were counting up the money in the back to cut the group a check when I realized that what we were doing by calling this a ‘free will offering’ was unwittingly promoting the heretical doctrine of free will. It just goes to show you how wily Satan can be in spreading false teachings. I was absolutely stunned at the thought.”

    What Galan did next left those assisting him with counting the offering more than a little stunned.

    “He started mumbling something about the offering being ‘Lucifer’s collection,'” said HCC Treasurer Jason Leo. “Then he went to the church kitchen to get some matches. He gathered up all the money – checks, cash, coins and all – and he took it out back and burned it. I couldn’t believe my eyes. There had to be two, maybe even three, large in there.”

    After turning a disappointed singing group away with no remuneration for their performance, Galan set himself directly to the task of creating official church policy that would ban the use of the term “free will offerings” in favor of “election collections.”

    “I got a pretty nasty letter from Jerry Falwell,” Galan said. “But doing the right thing is not always easy, and it certainly is not always popular.”

    Galan felt that the term “election collections” would better represent the doctrinal beliefs of his nondenominational church, which takes much of its dogma from the teachings of John Calvin. Calvin believed that God has worked his will through all of human history, as opposed to others like James Arminius and John Wesley who taught that God gives all of mankind free will. “Election” is a term used to describe Calvin’s belief that God chose those who would be saved before the beginning of time.

    “I want people who come to our church to know that they have absolutely nothing to do with how much money they put in that plate,” Galan said. “God elected before the creation of the universe how much money will be collected in each of our offerings, and there is nothing that any human being can do to change that amount. The only ‘free will’ here is God’s.” ‘

  4. The ones giving the empty envelopes wanted to be seen as giving to others but were not giving anything of all. The sacrifice of the Lord is a broken, and contrite heart

    Psalm 51:17:King James Bible
    The sacrifices of God [are] a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
    To have one will love whoever like Jesus who is the Lord God who gave all for us.A person who is rich and gives much of what he has given little compared to the widows mite.
    Mark 12,Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. 42And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. 43And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: 44For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.
    Jesus also says:Matthew 6:19:King James Bible
    Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:

  5. Not connected with this post I know, but we were in China for three weeks and your blog was blocked throughout that time.

    Our Chinese friends told us that the authorities were exercising even greater ‘vigilance’ in recent weeks as a result of the contretemps over the Noble Peace Prize.

    But methinks it has something to do with your phenomenology of the loos on the Chinese trains– which are excellent, as you keep pointing out, but your graphic account of the 4th class carriages may have been too much for a thin-skinned bureaucrat somewhere in Beijing.

    1. The first time I was in China (in 2009) I had trouble accessing my blog when it was with the google bunch, blogger, but then earlier this year I had no trouble whatsoever. Perhaps a story of how clean and peaceful it is to relieve oneself on such a train would help.

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