This lesson will include the questions, answers, and commentary for eleven through seventeen of this Discipleship program. This second lesson answers questions about God’s relationship with humanity as per the Holy Bible.
Christian Discipleship Lesson Two
QUESTION 11: WHAT ARE THE DECREES OF GOD?
Answer: The decrees of God are his eternal plan, according to the counsel of his will, whereby for His glory, he has foreordained whatsoever will come to Him, will be saved. Scripture: Ephesians 1:11; Romans 11:36; Daniel 4:35; Isaiah 46:10; Psalm 115:3; Amos 3:6.
Salvation is usually represented in two ways. You are either part of “the elect” from before God created the universe, or everyone has the potential of electing to enter heaven by accepting Christ as Savior and Lord. But let’s take a closer look at this with God’s omnipresence clearly understood. God is everywhere, always throughout space, time, matter, and energy. That’s the only way He can know the end from the beginning. Isaiah 46:10. So, God has known who would accept His Son and be born again from the beginning, but every person has the potential of becoming born again. John 3:16. They must simply believe, be open to the Holy Spirit changing their lives, repent, and accept the free gift of salvation. So, it’s not predestination or free election. It’s a combination of both because God has known your decision from the beginning but still expects you to elect Christ as Savior and Lord freely.
QUESTION 12: HOW DOES GOD EXECUTE HIS DECREES?
Answer: God implements his decrees in the works of creation and providence. Scripture: Genesis 1:1; Revelation 4:11; Matthew 5:45; 6:26; Acts 14:17: Proverbs 16:9, 33; 19:21; 20:24; 21:1, 31.
God is the sovereign Lord of everything because He created everything. Therefore, He has the right and responsibility to govern His creation according to His perfect will. God’s providence is His protective care over His creation and humanity. So, while we are to be respectful of God’s creation, we are not to worship it in any way. God gave humanity dominion over the earth to use its resources responsibly. But God is still sovereign, so no activity of humanity will ever destroy the earth because God maintains the earth and will one day destroy the world with fire according to His foreordained perfect will.
QUESTION 13: WHAT IS THE WORK OF CREATION?
Answer: The work of creation is God’s making all things out of nothing by the word of his power, and all creation was perfect. Scripture: Genesis 1:1, 31; Hebrews 11:3; Exodus 20:11; Romans 4:17.
In the beginning, God created a perfect world. Sin came into the world through Satan’s beguiling of Eve. God knew this would happen but allowed it to fulfill His divine plan. So, God cursed the earth and humanity, resulting in a fallen world full of fallen from grace people. But God originally made a perfect creation.
Please understand that the theory of evolution is a lie and without scientific merit, as is the big bang theory. Both require raw materials to create and no mind to guide construction. God simply spoke everything into existence, from the subatomic particles to His universe of billions of galaxies with trillions of stars. He is truly all-powerful and all-knowing, creating vast complexity from nothing. The universe could never come from a big bang or random selection.
QUESTION 14: HOW DID GOD CREATE MAN?
Answer: God created man male and female, after his image, we have the capacity for knowledge, righteousness, and holiness, with dominion over all creatures. Scripture: Genesis 1:27-28; Colossians 3:10; Ephesians 4:24.
Please note that God only created male and female human beings. There are no other genders. Each person, without regard for their initial depravity, has the potential to accept Christ and follow His example of living righteously. Holiness is being separated out from the rest of humanity in service to God. We are to exercise self-control and dominion of the earth with wisdom, righteousness, and holiness.
QUESTION 15: WHAT ARE GOD’S WORKS OF PROVIDENCE?
Answer: God’s works of providence are the holy, wise, and powerful acts that he keeps and governs concerning all his creatures and all their actions. Scripture: Nehemiah 9:6; Colossians 1:17; Hebrews 1:3; Psalm 103:19; Matthew 10:29-30.
God’s providence is His protective care over His creation with wisdom and His creative will. Because of His awesome creative power, no creature, including humans, has any excuse for not understanding the eternal creative power of our thrice holy Godhead. Romans 1:20. God is completely sovereign over all of His creation, creatures, and their actions.
QUESTION 16: WHAT SPECIAL ACT OF PROVIDENCE DID GOD EXERCISE TOWARDS MAN WHEN HE WAS FIRST CREATED?
Answer: When God had created man, he made a covenant with him that he should live and enjoy all the benefits of creation but that he would die if he abandoned the obedience that comes from faith. God commanded him not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and thus forsake his child-like dependence upon God for all things. Scripture: Genesis 2:15-17; Galatians 3:12; Romans 5:12.
God’s protective care for humanity started with a perfect world in a perfect garden. Humanity could have stayed entirely dependent on God but chose to walk its own path. They ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, abandoning their obedience to God. God’s plan of salvation is God’s generous solution to humanity’s sin. So, why did an all-knowing God allow this to happen? The only logical answer is that it was part of His plan from the beginning. We cannot know His entire plan and all its details because we simply don’t have minds capable of understanding it, and so we rely on God’s wisdom and providence.
QUESTION 17: DID OUR FIRST PARENTS CONTINUE IN THE OBEDIENCE FOR WHICH THEY WERE CREATED?
Answer: No, but desiring to be like God, our first parents abandoned the obedience of faith, ate of the forbidden tree, sinned against God, and gave up the innocence in which they were created. Scripture: Genesis 3:1-7; Ecclesiastes 7:29; Romans 5:12.
Adam and Eve were indeed the first two people. Since evolution is a physical impossibility and devoid of scientific merit, we can conclude that God created the first two humans. These first two humans chose to abandon their obedience to God; therefore, we have inherited a sinful nature of total depravity. We now have to choose salvation. We must choose to live righteous lives according to God’s Holy Word. Our dependence on the Holy Spirit and His sound counsel without deviating from Biblical scripture is now our chosen path. Our righteousness is as filthy rags, but Christ imparts His righteousness when we accept the free gift of salvation, repent of our sins and try with all our hearts to live lives obedient to scripture. God doesn’t force us down this path; we willingly choose this path to praise, honor and glorify our loving, righteous, and perfect God.
Christian Discipleship Lesson One
If you missed the first lesson in this series, you will find it in Christian Discipleship Lesson One.