Biblical proof of free will

I am curently debating a calvinest with strong beliefs in its tenents of TULIP ( had to look that up on wikipedia)

he claims there no biblical proof for free will and even goes to say that augustine disnt totally believe in it all that much

can someone hook me up with biblical quotes in support of free will?

… I like to here what he has to say about Gen 3:22 (RSV)
Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever”

Or the fact that we are in a fallen state and have original sin was because an act of disobedience, free will.

Plus, I think the Philosophy forum here would give this “doctrine” a fine education.


*]From Scripture: If there is no free will, then there is no choice. But Deuteronomy 30:19 gives us a choice: “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Choose therefore life, that both you and your seed may live”. Therefore we have free will.
*]From common sense logic: If there is no free will, then there is no choice of belief, and therefore no convincing. People who deny the existence of free will are convinced there is no free will. Therefore we have free will.

Matt. 23:37

"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! 38 Behold, your house is forsaken and desolate. 39 For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”

You see in verse 37 how Christ would have gathered up Jerusalem as a hen gathers her brood, but Jerusalem would not. How could Jerusalem go against the Will of God if indeed there was no free will?

[bibledrb]deuteronomy 30:19[/bibledrb]

This James Akin Catholic Answers article takes you through the five points of TULIP.

Careful there jbecknell. “Would” in this context is not a conditional hypothetical but an archaic expression for wish or desire, as in “All things therefore whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do you also to them”.

Rev2: 21 ?
And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.

Acts7: 51 ??
Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers [did], so [do] ye.

20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

This is true of the second instance of the word, but not the first. The first instance shows the conditional nature of Jerusalem’s rejection quite clearly.

The entire verse reflects the conditional nature. In fact, it’s the very same verse that Tim Staples (the chief apologist at catholic answers) uses to show an example of free will in Scripture.

Well, if there’s no free will, there’s no sin, and no repentance, and no point in arguing about the matter. You’ll just end up wherever you’ve been predestined to go.

Calvinists are arbitrarily selective with Augustine’s “authority” just as an FYI. They should either grant that he has some divine-appointed authority or stop quote-mining him.

As for free will, these are just some passages I think are a little more explicit with regard to the exercise of free will (because the Bible is chock full of other language that exhorts the listener to commit a certain act):

James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.

Philemon 1:14 I preferred to do nothing without your consent in order that your goodness might not be by compulsion but of your own free will.

Sirach 15:11-20 Say not: “It was God’s doing that I fell away”; for what he hates he does not do. Say not: “It was he who set me astray”; for he has no need of wicked man. Abominable wickedness the Lord hates, he does not let it befall those who fear him. When God, in the beginning, created man, he made him subject to his own free choice. If you choose you can keep the commandments; it is loyalty to do his will. There are set before you fire and water; to whichever you choose, stretch forth your hand. Before man are life and death, whichever he chooses shall be given him. Immense is the wisdom of the Lord; he is mighty in power, and all-seeing. The eyes of God see all he has made; he understands man’s every deed. No man does he command to sin, to none does he give strength for lies. (of course Calvinists followed the Protestant tradition of rejecting Sirach…)

Psalm 16:4 Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows

Isaiah 7:15 He shall eat curds and honey when he knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good.

Proverbs 1:29 Because they hated knowledgeand did not choose the fear of the Lord.

Isaiah 56:4 For thus says the Lord: "To the eunuchs who keep my sabbaths, who choose the things that please me and hold fast my covenant.

Deuteronomy 23:23 You shall be careful to perform what has passed your lips, for you have voluntarily vowed to the Lord your God what you have promised with your mouth.

Jeremiah 18:1-18 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD: “Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will let you hear my words.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was working at his wheel. And the vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter’s hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do. Then the word of the Lord came to me: "O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter has done? says the Lord. Behold, like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel. If at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom, that I will pluck up and break down and destroy it, and if that nation, concerning which I have spoken, turns from its evil, I will repent of the evil that I intended to do to it. And if at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will build and plant it, and if it does evil in my sight, not listening to my voice, then I will repent of the good which I had intended to do to it. Now, therefore, say to the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: Thus says the Lord, Behold, I am shaping evil against you and devising a plan against you. Return, every one from his evil way, and amend your ways and your doings.' "But they say, That is in vain! We will follow our own plans, and will every one act according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.’ (this passage particularly wrecks the Calvinist interpretation of the passive clay in Romans 9)

Jeremiah 2:13 For my people have done two evils. They have forsaken me, the Fountain of living water, and **they have dug for themselves **cisterns, broken cisterns that are unable to hold water.

2 Timothy 2:12 if we deny Him, He also will deny us.

Isaiah 30:1 Woe to the rebellious children," says the Lord, "who carry out a plan, but not mine; and who make a league, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin.

2 Corinthians 8:1-5 We want you to know, brethren, about the grace of God which has been shown in the churches of Macedo’nia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of liberality on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own free will, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints – and this, not as we expected, but first they gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God. (this passage shows that grace neither violates man’s will, nor does man’s will replace God’s will)

1 Thessalonians 4:3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor. (God’s will includes man’s abilities to take ownership of himself)

=ZhaneAugustine;7628054]I am curently debating a calvinest with strong beliefs in its tenents of TULIP ( had to look that up on wikipedia)

he claims there no biblical proof for free will and even goes to say that augustine disnt totally believe in it all that much

can someone hook me up with biblical quotes in support of free will?

:smiley: They Must use a REALLY different Bible…

**Deut.30: 19 **“I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live,”

4Ezra.7: 129 "For this is the way of which Moses, while he was alive, spoke to the people, saying, `Choose for yourself life, that you may live!’ " Matt.19; 17 "And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? One there is who is good. **If you **would enter life, keep the commandments.” ****

**Sir.15: 17 **“Before a man are life and death, and whichever **he chooses **will be given to him.”

Matt.20: 14 Take what belongs to you, and go; I choose to give to this last as I give to you. AND 15" Am I not allowed to do what** I choose **with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’ "

**Heb.6: 10 **“For God is not so unjust as to overlook your work and the love which you showed for his sake in serving the saints, as you still do.”

1 Peter 1: 17 “Now if you invoke as Father him who judges impartially according to each one’s works, conduct yourselves with reverence during the time of your sojourning, “

Rom.2: 13 “For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.”

OH! Ask this person IF they chose to ask you the question; and DID you choose to answer it:)

God Bless,

p.s. I meant to include this last post just as an example of how people quote-mine Augustine in an attempt to use him as support for “no free will” but that is not a complete picture of his works. To him, we certainly have free will even if that is a gift from God, moved by grace. For example:For it is certain that we keep the commandments if we will; but because the will is prepared by the Lord, we must ask of Him for such a force of will as suffices to make us act by the willing. It is certain that we do keep the commandments, if we will to do so; but because the will is prepared by the Lord (Prv 8:35), we must as Him to give our wills such a strength as will suffice for putting our will into action. It is certain than in willing anything, it is we that do the willing; but it is He that enables us to will what is good…It is certain that in doing anything, it is we that act; but it is He that enables us to act, by His bestowing efficacious powers upon our will. (Augustine, Grace and Free Will, 32[XVI])And John Calvin himself, conceded in his Institutes (III.22.8) that Augustine was not always in league with his own position on salvation. Perhaps most contrary to Calvin was Sermon 169 by Augustine:What does this mean, “for our justification”? So that He might justify us; so that He might make us just. You will be a work of God, not only because you are a man, but also because you are just. For it is better that you be just than that you be a man. If God made you a man, and you made yourself just, something you were doing would be better than what God did. But God made you without any cooperation on your part. For you did not lend your consent so that God could make you. How could you have consented, when you did not exist? But he who made you without your consent does not justify you without your consent. He made you without your knowledge, but He does not justify you without you willing it.” (Augustine, Sermon 169)

Thank you all for the help, along with the early father’s this should help me a lot

Thank you all for the help, along with the early father’s this should help me a lot

Thank you all for the help, along with the early father’s this should help me a lot

thanks guys

Or, another possibility is that, in the post fall world, all human beings are free to choose in accordance with our desires, but, like drug addicts, what we desire is not ultimately good, and like drug addicts, we are powerless to stop desiring what is not ultimately good. Therefore, like a drug addict, I am (along with all human beings on the earth) not truly free in terms of my will.


This can be understood to mean that God acts supernaturally to unharden the will of those whom He draws to Him so that they come to God willingly. If this is what Augustine means, I doubt that Calvin would disagree.

As I stated earlier, Calvin in his Institutes admitted that Augustine was not always in line with him. And the text of Sermon 169 is not worded the way you assert, anyway.

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