St. Paul, A Shipwreck and The Adjustment Bureau - John Van Sloten

August 07, 2011

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Media @ New Hope CalgaryWhat do you think about free will and providence? Do we choose our lives? Or is there some kind of divine plan? Or is it both?

“In their hearts human beings plan their course,
but the LORD establishes their steps.”
Proverbs 16:9, TNIV

“Men, I can see that our voyage is going to be disastrous and bring great loss to ship and cargo, and to our own lives also.”
The Apostle Paul in Acts 27:10, TNIV

“But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed. Last night an angel of the God whose I am and whom I serve stood beside me and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’ So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me. Nevertheless, we must run aground on some island.”
Acts 27:22-26, TNIV

“The Chairman has the plan. We only see part of it”
Team Leader, The Adjustment Bureau

Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men stay with the ship, you cannot be saved.” So the soldiers cut the ropes that held the lifeboat and let it drift away.
Acts 27:31, TNIV

“The soldiers planned to kill the prisoners to prevent any of them from swimming away and escaping. But the centurion wanted to spare Paul’s life and kept them from carrying out their plan.”
Acts 27:42-43, TNIV


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August 10, 2011
Was just doing some research for our trip to Europe and came across The Augsburg Confession, since we will go to Augsburg, and this Article 18, certainly is timely to the discussion. Not sure I understand it completely, John, but thought it interestig to share. Lutherans believe that we have free will in the realm of "civil righteousness" (or "things subject to reason"), but that we do not have free will in "spiritual righteousness". In other words, we are free to choose and act in every regard except for the choice of salvation. Faith is not the work of men, but of the Holy Spirit.
Wendy J. Lewis Dart
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