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Does God Hear Our Prayers?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by JustCallMeNick, Mar 7, 2015.

  1. roger1440

    roger1440 I do stuff

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    The Drowning Man

    A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help.

    Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, "Jump in, I can save you."

    The stranded fellow shouted back, "No, it's OK, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me."

    So the rowboat went on.

    Then a motorboat came by. "The fellow in the motorboat shouted, "Jump in, I can save you."

    To this the stranded man said, "No thanks, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith."

    So the motorboat went on.

    Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, "Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety."

    To this the stranded man again replied, "No thanks, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith."

    So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

    Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, "I had faith in you but you didn't save me, you let me drown. I don't understand why!"

    To this God replied, "I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?"
     
  2. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    That's the story I referred to before.

    In this story, who sent the flood?
     
  3. Kolibri

    Kolibri Well-Known Member

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    This presumes that what insurance calls "acts of God" are actually that, "acts of God". Or that because god is omnipotent and all loving that he should have prevented the flood.

    1. God never punishes w/o warning. Nor does he kill the righteous along with the unrighteous. Natural disasters are not "acts of God."

    For the Sovereign Lord Jehovah will not do a thing
    Unless he has revealed his confidential matter (or "his secret.") to his servants the prophets.
    - Amos 3:7

    "It is unthinkable that you would act in this manner by putting the righteous man to death with the wicked one so that the outcome of the righteous man and the wicked is the same! It is unthinkable of you. Will the Judge of all the earth not do what is right?" - Ge 18:25

    2. Jehovah balances his power and love with justice and wisdom. The Bible is clear that Jehovah has a valid reason to, for a time, allow man to feel the results of independence. The serpent in Eden did not challenge God's power, but his right to rule. We are experiencing what happens when man is left to direct his own step. That way, when Jehovah does say enough is enough, no one will ever again have a valid reason to wonder which sovereignty is in our best interests. Very early in man's history he gave us a hope.

    "And I will put enmity (or "hostility.") between you (that is, the serpent.) and the woman and between your offspring and her offspring. He will crush your head, and you will strike him in the heal." - Ge 3:15

    "For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will, but through the one (that is, God.) who subjected it, on the basis of hope that the creation itself would also be set free from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God." - Ro 8:20,21
     
    #23 Kolibri, Mar 9, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2015
  4. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    Actually, it didn't presume anything. I was open to any answer that Roger might give. I was interested in seeing how he could reconcile whatever answer he gave.

    Then who is ultimately responsible for them?

    Will he also not send boats and helicopters without telling his prophets?

    So, in your view, God does not answer prayers (at least for now)?
     
  5. Kolibri

    Kolibri Well-Known Member

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    I need to be more careful in my wording. "This presumes" is ambiguous. Was this you or the argument. I can see how it can be presumed that I meant I was presuming you were presuming. :D
    Regardless I will be more careful from here on out.:)
    And I guess I jumped in too quick as well.

    Sometimes man is responsible for natural disasters by his mismanagement of the environment. Sometimes it is man's choice to live so close to earthquake prone zones, or to ignore warning signs that a volcano is active.
    We saw in a small scale that Jesus was given authority over the weather, and we can look forward to that control being used worldwide starting with the 1000 year reign of the Christ, but we are not being ruled by God and his Christ as a planet just yet. We did see too how the Israelites were blessed with rains and fruitful harvests when they were loyal to their God. and were subject to famine and drought when they were disloyal. This is not an exact correlation as the famines and drought were sometimes discipline as proscribed by the Law Covenant - but this does illustrate that God has blessed those that are loyal and that weather and other earth stresses can be controlled.

    It does seem silly that this hypothetical man stubbornly refused to work in harmony with his prayer. As far as God sending others to help as an answer to a prayer, the Bible does say that happens.

    "Are they (that is, the angels) not all spirits for holy service, sent out to minister for those who are going to inherit salvation?" - Heb 1:14

    Anxiety in a man's heart weighs it down,
    But a good word cheers it up.
    - Proverbs 12:25

    "If a brother or a sister is lacking clothing and enough food for the day, yet one of you says to them, 'Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,' but you do not give them what they need for their body, of what benefit is it?" - James 2:16

    Just from these 3 scriptures we can see that God will often use others as facilitators of his help. So considering the providential boats and helicopters as God's fingers reaching out to help would not have been unreasonable.

    Call on me in the time of distress.
    I will rescue you, and you will glorify me.
    - Psalm 50:15

    God does answer prayers, but as shown by post #14, not all prayers are listened to. We do good to remember how Jehovah feels about excessive pride.

    Though Jehovah is high, he takes note of the humble,
    But the haughty he knows only from a distance.
    - Psalm 138:6

    And we have to remember what is the bare minimum that Jehovah promises us, so we do not get disillusioned.

    "and may you be strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may endure fully with patience and joy." - Colossians 1:11
     
    #25 Kolibri, Mar 9, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2015
  6. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    I believe (from my particular Hindu sampradaya's perspective) that God hears all prayers, but will only answer those that would bring us closer to him, as that is the goal. He also assigns spirits (devas in Hinduism) to take care of the details.
     
  7. serp777

    serp777 Well-Known Member

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    He only listens to people who lost their car keys or football stars who won the superbowl or oscar winners. Starving African children on the other hand? NOPE.
     
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  8. JustCallMeNick

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    If you're referring to the Biblical God, those last two claims are plainly incorrect (I'll cite the NWT since I assume that's what you're most comfortable with):

    "The dream [of seven years of abundance followed by seven years of famine] was given twice to Pharaoh because the matter has been firmly established by the true God, and the true God will soon carry it out.” Genesis 41:32

    "'But if Jehovah does something extraordinary and the ground opens and swallows them and everything that belongs to them and they go down alive into the Grave, you will certainly know that these men have treated Jehovah disrespectfully.' As soon as he finished speaking all these words, the ground beneath them split apart. And the earth opened and swallowed them up, along with their households and everyone who belonged to Korah and all their goods. So they and all who belonged to them went down alive into the Grave, and the earth covered them over, so that they perished from the midst of the congregation. All the Israelites who were around them fled at their screaming, for they said: 'We are afraid that the earth may swallow us up!' Then a fire came out from Jehovah and consumed the 250 men offering the incense." Numbers 16:30-35

    "All have the very same outcome, the righteous and the wicked, the good and the clean and the unclean, those sacrificing and those not sacrificing. The good one is the same as the sinner; the one who swears an oath is the same as the one who is cautious about swearing an oath. This is a distressing that happens under the sun: Because all have the same outcome, the heart of humans is also full of bad; and there is madness in their heart during their life, and then they die!" Ecclesiastes 9:2-3

    “Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘I will cause powerful windstorms to burst forth in my wrath, and a torrential downpour in my anger, and hailstones in destructive fury.’” Ezekiel 13:13

    “Say to the land of Israel, “This is what Jehovah says: “Here I am against you, and I will bring my sword out of its sheath and cut off from you both the righteous and the wicked. Because I will cut off from you the righteous and the wicked, my sword will be drawn from its sheath against all flesh, from south to north.” Ezekiel 21:3-4

    “Then Jehovah hurled a strong wind at the sea, and there was such a violent storm on the sea that the ship was about to be wrecked.” Jonah 1:4

    "...since he makes his sun rise on both the wicked and the good and makes it rain on both the righteous and the unrighteous." Matthew 5:45

    "Or those 18 on whom the tower in Siloam fell, killing them--do you think that they had greater guilt than all other men who live in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all de destroyed, as they were." Luke 13:4-5


    Duly noted, but do you have an answer to the conundrum I posed in the OP?
     
  9. JustCallMeNick

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    The answer there would typically be that something might be good and recognizable as good, but simply not God's will at this time, e.g. if God has an even BETTER thing in mind.

    All good points, I agree. All this seems to get chalked up to the ultimately inscrutable "will of God," because, "His ways are higher than our ways," etc. In other words, stop expecting it to make sense - an answer I'm starting to find increasingly dismissive of genuine criticism.
     
  10. serp777

    serp777 Well-Known Member

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    I see no reason why God should care about prayers. Clearly, if they are answered at all, it is entirely arbitrary. Why would God bother to answer the wishes of a few relative ants--like finding someone's care keys, or helping someone win the Superbowl, or getting an Oscar for some actor/actress. Starving African children die all the time. If prayers are answered its almost a capricious selection of prayers. Regardless, having your prayers answered is like winning the lottery so your energy is better spent solving your actual problems.
     
  11. Kolibri

    Kolibri Well-Known Member

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    eh. I quote from it most frequently because it is easy to read and the thoughts are so much easier to see when the reader does not have to translate out of an out-dated version of English. I do not mind using other translations though. In regards to your quotes...

    Genesis 41:32 - this famine was not a punishment. The dream provided a warning of what was coming and a way for Jehovah to teach that following his direction always leads to success. Plus it ended in the 70 members of Jacobs household to have a good place to settle (Goshen) while waiting for the promised land.

    Numbers 16:30-35 - these were rebels that were punished, some by fire, some by earthquake. Some of the sons of Korah separated themselves when warned. We know this because it was his descendants that were used to compose Psalms 42-49,84,85,87,88. They were all warned. Check out Numbers 16:11,15,20-26.

    Ecclesiastes 9:1-3 - is a statement about the eventual outcome of all imperfect people. We all die eventually. There is no "natural disaster" here. this is a continuation of what Adam was already told at Ge 3:19

    Both accounts in Ezekiel were warnings, not examples of accounts of action taken w/o warning.

    Jonah 1:4 - The only righteous man on this boat, though he was in a state of disobedience, was Jonah. Still the boat was not immediately capsized, nor was it capsized at all. Jonah showed self-sacrifice by offering his life to spare the lives of these sailors. He found out later that they survived as no doubt he wrote this book regarding himself after the events. Jonah himself warned these sailors of what they needed to do to survive at Jonah 1:12.

    Matthew 5:45 - this is not a punishment at all but a statement of Jehovah's provisions the sun and the water cycle to the benefit of mankind in general.

    Luke 13:4-5 - the falling of this tower was not an act of God either, it was an unexpected event. (Ecc 9:11) As Jesus said, they did not die due to any excessive guilt. But Jesus used this current event to drive home a warning about the need to have a change of attitude

    You mean that to a believer, having God being the hearer of prayer is something impossible to be prove as true or false? Idk. I mean all the reasons that you cited as to why God might not give a person their request immediately are scripturally verifiable.

    But we know it can't be true for all believers. (Mt 7:23)
    I can think of one way of falsifying it for a particular individual - if they accept the Bible as the word of God.
    A man who lacks consideration for his wife is a man who will not be consistently heard by God if at all. If he believes he is being heard, here is the proof that he is wrong:

    "You husbands, in the same way, continue dwelling with them according to knowledge. (or "showing them consideration; understanding them.") Assign them honor as to a weaker vessel, the feminine one, since they are also heirs with you of the undeserved favor of life, in order for your prayers not to be hindered." - 1 Peter 3:7
     
    #31 Kolibri, Mar 10, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2015
  12. Caligula

    Caligula Member

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    Yes, he can hear all prayers. God delegated archangel Probability to manage with all these prayers. Ain't he smart? If you think he is, please praise him. If if you think he ain't - praise him, or you'll greatly suffer!
     
  13. JustCallMeNick

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    Yes, I know - that is why I cited it as an example. You claimed natural disasters are not acts of God and that God does not kill the righteous along with the unrighteous. Quite plainly, though, Jehovah caused a seven year famine to come over the whole land of Egypt and beyond - righteous and unrighteous suffering alike.

    I did not question anything about warnings. Specifically I questioned your claim that natural disasters are not acts of God and that God does not kill the righteous along with the unrighteous. I brought up this example because again, we see Jehovah clearly causing a natural disaster - a very extreme one. Now if it helps you sleep at night to believe that "everyone who belonged to Korah" was "unrighteous," then OK (but really? Their whole household? Their babies? Are you sure?) Contextually it sure doesn't seem like the Israelites felt too protected by their ostensibly "righteous" status as God's chosen people.

    Yes, and who is in charge of when we die, Biblically speaking?

    "My days are in [God's] hand." Psalm 31:15

    "If [man's] days are decided, the number of his months is with you; You have set a limit for him that he may not go beyond." Job 14:5 (The NWT softens this verse by translating the first word as "if"- every other translation I can find says "since.")

    While this is not tied to a natural disaster, it connects to the idea that Biblically there is not some clear delineation between righteous and unrighteous in terms of how your life will play out. Yes, God does often use natural disasters and the like as punishment for the "unrighteous," but sometimes the same affliction befalls everyone alike.

    You failed to comment on the most relevant parts! Ezekiel 13 is, yet again, an example of natural disasters being caused by God. In Ezekiel 21, Jehovah comes right out and says he is going to "cut off" (that's a euphemism for kill) both the righteous and the unrighteous alike - directly in opposition to what you said earlier.

    I also don't know how giving a warning, which you keep emphasizing, somehow gets Jehovah off the moral hook. If I warn you ahead of time that I'm going to punch you in the nose because I'm angry at you, that doesn't somehow give me license.

    I only brought this up as yet another example of God having influence over weather.

    Yes - again, another example of God having influence over Earth's weather. I don't know what kind of rose-colored glasses make you assume God only controls weather when it's nice and refreshing and everyone is happy about it, but when it's stormy and people die because of flooding or heat or cold, God is suddenly hands-off. God has his hands in everything that happens, according to the Bible:

    "Because from [Jehovah] and by him and for him are all things." Romans 11:36

    Again, there is no such thing as an "unexpected event" if God is omnipotent and omniscient. Sometimes Jehovah ordains for bad things to happen to good people - sometimes even death.
     
    #33 JustCallMeNick, Mar 10, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2015
  14. JustCallMeNick

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    But you see how that's a terrible way to guilt-trip someone, don't you? "Ah, prayers aren't getting answered, Bob? Hm, not treating the wife well?"

    It seems to me that's just another rationalization to make people feel like their prayers aren't getting answered because there is something wrong with THEM, rather than, I don't know, something wrong with prayer, perhaps - at least that kind of prayer.

    Well wait a second - how would someone "believe" he is being heard, without actually being heard? That seems to be implying that a person still CAN get all the things they ask for in prayer, without doing what God says at all. So again, the conundrum remains.

    So a person's prayers might be "hindered" if they don't agree with Paul and, say, consider their wives to be equals with them, instead of "weaker vessels?" Ugh, even worse, friend, sorry.
     
  15. Kolibri

    Kolibri Well-Known Member

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    The earthquake in Haiti was not an act of God. Hurricane Katrina was not an act of God. The tsunami in Japan was not an act of God. By definition, when God acts, he is not indiscriminate. Miraculous Judgements might use natural forces, but they are not natural disasters; when I am speaking of natural disasters, I am specifically speaking of things that are not directed by God. Perhaps it was a clarity of concept that was missing.

    God does not plan everything out in detail. He does not use his ability to see into the future indiscriminately. If he did there would be no free will. Instead the Bible shows he holds back, and he even has hopes that do not get realized.

    For the vineyard of Jehovah of armies is the house of Israel;
    The men of Judah are the plantation he was fond of.
    He kept hoping for justice,
    But look! there was injustice;
    For righteousness,
    But look! a cry of distress.
    - Isaiah 5:7

    So there really are 'unexpected events', events that God has not technically caused, but permitted. Though one could argue that by permitting he "caused", he is not the source of all calamities, nor the source of people's stubbornness.

    Regarding Job 14:7, Byington also uses "if". I have not checked the interlinears. "If" is definitely softer than "Seeing his days are numbered."
    No imperfect man is righteous in the fullest extent required of humans. We do die, eventually; even if it is simply due to our bodies wearing out from not being perfectly renewed.

    Children are the responsibility of the parents. If you are a parent, would you want that responsibility taken away from you? As long you are their legal guardian, their future rests in your choices. (De 6:6,7)

    Train a boy in the way he should go;
    Even when he grows old we will not depart from it.
    - Proverbs 22:6


    You are right, that would be a terrible way to guilt trip someone. But you asked how can one solve the conundrum regarding if prayers being heard by God is unfalsifiable. We know the Bible speaks clearly that not all prayers are heard. But how do you convince someone that their prayers are being heard or not heard. The only way to do that is to reason on God's standards for prayer. Just because a star athlete prayed for the gold metal and won it does not mean that God heard or answered that prayer. But the 'believer's heart' can be deceptive and cause him to believe something that is not true. It is a matter of self-deception that can only be fixed going to the written word and reexamining ourselves in relation to it.

    Personally I would only bring up 1 Peter 3:7 to someone who was struggling and looking for a way to improve things, and then only if I had reason to suspect that it was an issue. I can tell you I have not ever shown this scripture in the case of personal counsel before and have so far only used it in a topical discussion on prayer.
     
  16. JustCallMeNick

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    How do you know? Some people have said they were acts of God. At best you can say the Bible is silent on them.

    But that's entirely the point - how would you know if a natural disaster were caused by God or not? This strikes me as a very artificial distinction you're making - when God does it they're "judgments using natural forces" - those "forces" include storms, floods, droughts/famines, thunder, lightning, fire, earthquakes - but when God just "permits" it they're "natural disasters." You see how this is problematic, I hope? One man's natural disaster is another man's judgment from God for sin. (See: Westboro Baptist Church)

    At best you've got a mixed bag:

    "From the beginning I [Jehovah] foretell the outcome, And from long ago the things that have not yet been done. I say, ‘My decision will stand, And I will do whatever I please." Isaiah 46:10

    "For [Jehovah] looks to the ends of the earth, And he sees everything under the heavens. When he set the force of the wind And measured out the waters, When he made a regulation for the rain And a path for the thunderous storm cloud," Job 28:24-26

    "Do you know how the clouds float? These are the wonderful works of the One perfect in knowledge." Job 37:16

    "There is not a word on my tongue, But look! O Jehovah, you already know it well." Psalm 139:4

    "By this we will know that we originate with the truth, and we will assure our hearts before him regarding whatever our hearts may condemn us in, because God is greater than our hearts and knows all things." 1 John 3:19-20

    Whether he is the source of ALL calamities is one thing, but again, how do we distinguish the calamity he DID directly cause vs. the calamity he just "permitted?" Heck, there is even a Bible passage that ties all this back to prayer:

    "Elijah was a man with feelings like ours, and yet when he prayed earnestly for it not to rain, it did not rain on the land for three years and six months." James 5:17

    People's stubbornness is a whole 'nother issue, as again, the Bible says in several places that actually God DOES cause people to be stubborn and not believe.

    By Byington I assume you mean The Bible in Living English - a very loose "translation" that is more a paraphrase.


    I'm not seeing the relevance to our conversation?


    The problem, of course, is that "the written word" is subject to one's preconceptions and interpretations. So its usefulness for discerning reality is limited to one's own assurance that a) the Bible is worth listening to in the first place, and b) that one is actually understanding it correctly and applying it one's own life correctly.
     
  17. Kolibri

    Kolibri Well-Known Member

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    2 ways. The deaths are indiscriminate as the righteous are not fully spared and there was no prophetic warning that could prompt a repentance and/or reversal of the judgement or a clear means of salvation. When the Babylonians were coming to attack Jerusalem to destroy it, even though the stubbornness of the nation got to the point where the calamity was certain, individually they had a means of saving themselves by leaving the city and surrendering to the invading army. (Jeremiah 21:9)

    Regarding God's omniscience. There is nothing that is impossible for God to know, if he chooses too. But when it comes to calculating the future he always exercises perfect self-control to prevent predestining individual salvation. Groups of people and patterns are one thing. Even the actions of specific people hundreds of years in advance has been done as in the case of Cyrus the Mede, but never an individual's eternal destiny.

    Regarding James 5:17, Elijah's prayer was no doubt at Jehovah's direction even though the command to do so was not recorded in the scripture. We can see from 1 Kings 18:1 Elijah was following direction. The drought was in harmony with De 11:16,17 as a proscribed penalty for spiritual prostitution.

    This statement was why I brought up how one could argue that by permitting one "caused" something to happen.

    *** it-1 p. 857 Foreknowledge, Foreordination ***
    The apostle Paul’s discussion of God’s dealings with Pharaoh is often incorrectly understood to mean that God arbitrarily hardens the heart of individuals according to his foreordained purpose, without regard for the individual’s prior inclination, or heart attitude. (Ro 9:14-18) Likewise, according to many translations, God advised Moses that he would “harden [Pharaoh’s] heart.” (Ex 4:21; compare Ex 9:12; 10:1, 27.) However, some translations render the Hebrew account to read that Jehovah “let [Pharaoh’s] heart wax bold” (Ro); “let [Pharaoh’s] heart become obstinate.” (NW) In support of such rendering, the appendix to Rotherham’s translation shows that in Hebrew the occasion or permission of an event is often presented as if it were the cause of the event, and that “even positive commands are occasionally to be accepted as meaning no more than permission.” Thus at Exodus 1:17 the original Hebrew text literally says that the midwives “caused the male children to live,” whereas in reality they permitted them to live by refraining from putting them to death. After quoting Hebrew scholars M. M. Kalisch, H. F. W. Gesenius, and B. Davies in support, Rotherham states that the Hebrew sense of the texts involving Pharaoh is that “God permitted Pharaoh to harden his own heart—spared him—gave him the opportunity, the occasion, of working out the wickedness that was in him. That is all.”—The Emphasised Bible, appendix, p. 919; compare Isa 10:5-7.
    Corroborating this understanding is the fact that the record definitely shows that Pharaoh himself “hardened his heart.” (Ex 8:15, 32, KJ; “made his heart unresponsive,” NW) He thus exercised his own will and followed his own stubborn inclination, the results of which inclination Jehovah accurately foresaw and predicted. The repeated opportunities given him by Jehovah obliged Pharaoh to make decisions, and in doing so he became hardened in his attitude. (Compare Ec 8:11, 12.) As the apostle Paul shows by quoting Exodus 9:16, Jehovah allowed the matter to develop in this way to the full length of ten plagues in order to make manifest his own power and cause his name to be made known earth wide.—Ro 9:17, 18.

    Job 14:5's "If". I was too tired to look it up earlier. the Hebrew word is 'im Strong's Number 518 Hebrew Dictionary of the Old Testament Online Bible with Strong's Exhaustive Concordance, Brown Driver Briggs Lexicon, Etymology, Translations Definitions Meanings & Key Word Studies - Lexiconcordance.com

    The reference to parents being responsible for their children was in response to how it is that in times of judgement sometimes there is a loss of life of young ones along with their parents. Take the Flood in Noah's day. It was the parent's responsibility to get their little ones on the ark. God holds parents responsible for their babies. And this carries over to those times of adverse judgement when the children have not yet made a self-determination to put God before man.
     
    #37 Kolibri, Mar 11, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2015
  18. JustCallMeNick

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    But we covered this. Jehovah doesn't universally spare the righteous. The Bible explicitly informs us of this. So that metric is out.

    What this essentially means in practice, then, for folks who believe in the strictest kind of Sola Scriptura, is that after the Bible was written God suddenly stopped using "natural forces" for judgment (since we could never point to any storm or force of nature outside the Bible and say definitively it was a judgment from God). Which seems rather arbitrary on God's part, doesn't it? If it's been working for thousands of years, why suddenly give up?
    For others, though, they'd claim there's plenty of prophetic warning for the natural disasters they think are the work of divine judgment. Again, Westboro Baptist Church, case in point. One man's prophet is another man's crazy uncle who wears a tinfoil hat. So again, that metric strikes me as profoundly subjective.

    First I'm curious as to what you're quoting here. JW literature of some sort, I assume?

    Second, the examples extend beyond the hardening of Pharaoh's heart. But entering that discussion here would take us even further afield than we've already gone.

    Strong's gives the indication that the word has a wide range of potential meaning, so I'm assuming context is important in determining it in individual cases. Given that the NWT translation there is at odds with basically every mainstream translation I can find (KJV, NKJV, NASB, NIV, NAB, RSV, ESV, ASV, and so on) I'm going to chalk that up to JW bias.

    The fact that parents are responsible for their children does not mean you punish children for the wrongs of their parents. That's terrible. Surely you recognize how hideous it would be if we applied that logic in everyday life?
     
  19. ChristineES

    ChristineES Tiggerism
    Premium Member

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    I believe that God hears our prayers, but He just doesn't answer us always the way we expect Him to. I've had answers to prayers many times, including just recently.
     
  20. roger1440

    roger1440 I do stuff

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    “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” (John 14:14)
    In Jesus’s name implies in accordance to the will of God. We are to pray to be holy. We are not to pray to change the world. We are to pray to change how we live within the world. Look closely at the Lord’s Prayer. Our daily bread is the bread that comes down from Heaven. This bread is not rye, whole wheat or pumpernickel. Jesus was born in Bethlehem. Bethlehem literally means ”house of bread”. So, does God answer our prayers? All depends on what we are praying for.
     
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