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April 29, 2007

Comments

Mike Burke

But is there such a thing as "coincidence" in a universe governed by Providence?

I recently searched my own posts on a forum I've belonged to for over two years, and got 666 results.

I found it very disturbing because I was trying to sort some personal questions out at the time, and thought I was beginning to see the answer.

Was God telling me I was on the wrong track?

Was He telling me I'm lost??

Even more disturbing, if such things are just "coincidences," does that mean there is no sovereign, all-knowing, all-powerful, foreknowing God in control of things?

Jim Gordon

Hi Mike - thanks for your comment. The word co-incidence says nothing about causes, only that certain events occur at the same time or place. The significance we put on such events coming together will depend on how we see the world, God and ourselves.

Providence doesn't govern anything, God does. And the God who revealed himself in Jesus is neither arbitrary nor taciturn - words like longsuffering, faithful and everlasting love and mercy are primary descriptors of God. Providence is merely a word we use to try to grasp the reality of the God in whom we live and move and have our being.

I've no idea the significance of statistics from a computer search - I have a profound conviction about the God who searches and knows us, and who searches for us till he finds us.

Hope this helps, Jim Gordon

Mike Burke

>>>>The word co-incidence says nothing about causes, only that certain events occur at the same time or place. The significance we put on such events coming together will depend on how we see the world, God and ourselves<<<<

Thank you.

But I guess my question is "if there's a God who knew certain events would come together at the same time, and knew the significance an individual would put on those events coming together at that time, does that mean He intended that message for that individual"?

If not, why not?

Couldn't a foreknowing, omnipotent, omnescient God have forordained every seemingly meaningful "coincidence" to have meaning, and why wouldn't He?

I know this may be a stupid question, but it bothers me, and if you can see an answer, please reply.

Thank you.

Mike Burke

But if statistics from a computer search seem to have some significance, does that mean God intended them to have that significance to that individual?

If God foreknew they'd seem to have some significance, how can they mean nothing?

jim Gordon

If everything happens by the fore-ordination of God, the omnipotence, omiscience and omnipresence become an oppressive control in which there is no freedom. Made in the image of God each human being is one created as capable of relationship, moral consciousness and the freedom to choose, decide and act. That sin affects such faculties is what we mean by the marring of God's image by that freedom abused. My primary starting point in understanding the attributes of God is not the long words beginning with omni! It is that God is love, and love implies relationshiop, freedom, choice - and faithfulness is when these choices and decisions are made durable through the gift of Love opoured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit. To specualte on what God 'means' or what the significance of every event is, takes me into philosophical speculation ( not bad in itself) and in a relationship between the person and the Triune God, not speculation but trust is what is invited.

Mike

My last question was saved awaiting approval, and I hope you read this before approving it because something was lost when I tried posting it.

My questions should have appeared as follows:

>>>>To specualte on what God 'means' or what the significance of every event is, takes me into philosophical speculation ( not bad in itself)>>>My primary starting point in understanding the attributes of God is not the long words beginning with omni! It is that God is love, and love implies relationshiop, freedom, choice - and faithfulness is when these choices and decisions are made durable through the gift of Love opoured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit. To specualte on what God 'means' or what the significance of every event is, takes me into philosophical speculation ( not bad in itself) and in a relationship between the person and the Triune God, not speculation but trust is what is invited.<<<<

So could the purpose of some disturbing "coincidences" be to tes our trust in God, rather than to convey any specific message?

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