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#48883 - Thursday, June 14, 2012 5:25 AM Re: What is essential **** [Re: John_C]
Robin Offline

The Boy Wonder

Registered: Thursday, January 3, 2002
Posts: 1019
Loc: Florida, Occupied CSA
I had come, for awhile, to dismiss eschatology as not only non-essential, but unimportant. Perhaps I was reacting more to the "scared saved" stuff of my childhood, where kids were told that "the Antichrist is comin' to get ya, but you can escape if you pray this prayer - quick before the Antichrist comes!"

We were taught to fear man's wrath rather than God's justice. We were told that we could be rescued by Jesus from the horrific wrath of the Antichrist - if we agreed to His terms.

So newly Reformed, I has delighted to learn that Dispensationalism is not only biblically false, but historically unsupported as well. It "wrongly divides the people of God." And once disproved, it also quashed my Charismatic questions and freed me from a lot of the superstition associated with it.

Eschatology is important because it describes the nature of the Kingdom. Is it of this world or the next? Is it Jewish or more universal? Is it physical / political / cultural or eternal and non-temporal? These are the questions that helped shape my understanding of eschatology, and I know longer consider eschatology to be "non-essential." I say that belief in the physical and temporal return of Jesus Christ is essential doctrine, and furthermore that any eschatology which redirects the sinner's terror from the wrath of God to the wrath of men is heretical and ought to be universally condemned by those who love the gospel.

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#48884 - Thursday, June 14, 2012 10:43 AM Re: What is essential [Re: Robin]
Dennis Offline
Plebeian

Registered: Sunday, April 5, 2009
Posts: 21
Loc: Torrington, Ct.
Originally Posted By: Robin
I had come, for awhile, to dismiss eschatology as not only non-essential, but unimportant. Perhaps I was reacting more to the "scared saved" stuff of my childhood, where kids were told that "the Antichrist is comin' to get ya, but you can escape if you pray this prayer - quick before the Antichrist comes!"

We were taught to fear man's wrath rather than God's justice. We were told that we could be rescued by Jesus from the horrific wrath of the Antichrist - if we agreed to His terms.
Kinda the same with me. smile But I was raised Roman Catholic for the first 20 years of my life. So I was around 20-21 when I was introduced to Dispensationalism, I pretty much took it, hook, line and sinker. And like you said, it was pretty much a fear, control thing.

Quote:
So newly Reformed, I has delighted to learn that Dispensationalism is not only biblically false, but historically unsupported as well. It "wrongly divides the people of God." And once disproved, it also quashed my Charismatic questions and freed me from a lot of the superstition associated with it.
Amen bro!
I agree and praise God He cares for us and leads us into truth on many doctrines.

Quote:
Eschatology is important because it describes the nature of the Kingdom. Is it of this world or the next? Is it Jewish or more universal? Is it physical / political / cultural or eternal and non-temporal? These are the questions that helped shape my understanding of eschatology, and I know longer consider eschatology to be "non-essential." I say that belief in the physical and temporal return of Jesus Christ is essential doctrine, and furthermore that any eschatology which redirects the sinner's terror from the wrath of God to the wrath of men is heretical and ought to be universally condemned by those who love the gospel.

I just want to say, it has been a while since I have discussed these things with people and got such a reasonable, intelligent, knowledgeable discussion like I am having with you, I appreciate this.

This forum is like a breath of fresh air. Thanks you.

God bless.
_________________________
"There is no possibility of taking a mercy out of God's hand, till the mercy be ripe for us, and we ripe for the mercy."

THOMAS BROOKS

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#49060 - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 4:36 PM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Lichawa Thole Offline
Plebeian

Registered: Monday, August 13, 2012
Posts: 9
Loc: Zambia
Can someone please help me with info on how the terms "esential" and "non-essential" came into use from a historical standpoint with respect to christian doctrine?
I ask because reading the posts here, I get the impression that everything is essential.
For instance if the non-ordination of women to church office is essential to ecclesiology, then one might also argue that amillenialism is essential to eschatology with the end result that everything becomes essential
Yet we know that all terminology has a historical meaning attached to it. So for example, I cannot call myself a Presbyterian just because I believe in eldership rule as opposed to congregational rule because the historical meaning of Presbyterianism excludes Baptists who are without presbytery or synod.
So help me, what is the historical understanding of the terms "essential" and "non-essential?"
_________________________
A Debtor to Sovereign Grace

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#49061 - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 5:34 PM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Pilgrim Offline

Head Honcho

Registered: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Posts: 13355
Loc: NH, USA
Lichawa,

I think you will find that those terms vary greatly, although there has been historically a major consensus among Reformed denominations. You will always find extremes on both ends, but again there has been a major consensus on what is considered "essential" and "non-essential".

Further, the things included in those two groups vary according to the subject considered, e.g., historically, what is essential for salvation was nearly unanimously agreed upon among the Reformers and Puritans. Yet, on the subject of ecclesiology, there was a definite disagreement. On the matter of eschatology, the agreement was far greater than what might seem given the vast disparity of views we have today. In former years, e.g., previous to the 1800's there were only two received views; Amillennialism (the oldest although it was originally known as Postmillennialism) and the later Postmillennialism. They had their respective differences but they were both adamantly opposed to any and all forms of Chiliasm (Premillennialism).

So, how does one determine the historical understanding of what is essential and what is non-essential in regard to various subjects? I believe that is easily discerned by consulting the official Creeds, Confessions and Catechisms of the Church, beginning at the earliest days. On the matter of the nature of God, we have the Nicene and Athanasian Creeds. On the deity of Christ we have the Chalcedon Creed. On the matter of the Fall and its noetic effects, we have the Council of Orange. On a broader scale on the various Loci of Theology, we have the various Confessions of Faith; Waldensian, French, Helvetic, Belgic, Thirty-nine Articles, Westminster, London Baptist and Savoy Declaration. There is great unanimity between all those documents despite their minor differences on church polity.

What we are witnessing today, and this has been growing in intensity for the past 150+ years, is a tendency to minimize doctrine and life to the point of the absurd. We have today a "lowest common denominator" theology which has been used to develop a truncated and false gospel based upon Madison Avenue advertising philosophy and modern psychology's behavior modification. It has become so widespread that most people don't even realize what has been going on. In fact, whenever someone brings to the floor the "old gospel" of the Bible, which was preached and taught by the Reformers, Puritans and those who followed them through the centuries, it is looked upon as a very strange thing. It is criticized strongly as being 'narrow', 'divisive', 'too intellectual', 'oppressive' and many other pejorative slurs. I think we can give much credit to this falling away of sound doctrine and unanimity upon what is essential and non-essential to Charles Finney, a hero of such men as Billy Graham. His heresies have been a major influence upon most Evangelical denominations and churches. The "old paths" have been forsaken for "another way". (Isa 30:8-13; Jer 6:16,17; Hos 4:6)

Doubtless, MUCH more could be said on this subject, but hopefully, this brief synopsis will give you some food for thought. grin

And lastly, but certainly not least... Welcome to the Discussion Board!

In His grace,
_________________________


simul iustus et peccator


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#49196 - Thursday, October 4, 2012 5:42 PM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
After I read through past post on this subject, I was amazed that "love" was left out of everyone's essentials. It appears to me that the following is John's opinion of the essentials:

1 John 3:21-24
“Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.”
NASU


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#49197 - Thursday, October 4, 2012 6:25 PM Re: What is essential [Re: Wayne@purpose]
Pilgrim Offline

Head Honcho

Registered: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Posts: 13355
Loc: NH, USA
Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
After I read through past post on this subject, I was amazed that "love" was left out of everyone's essentials. It appears to me that the following is John's opinion of the essentials:

1 John 3:21-24
“Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.”
NASU

How about CONTEXT? For example...

1 John 3:18 (ASV) "[My] Little children, let us not love in word, neither with the tongue; but in deed and truth."

And, somehow you left out verse 24, even though the passage reference infers that it is included in your biblical quote?? Perhaps just a slip of the mouse? grin

1 John 3:21-24 (ASV) "Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, we have boldness toward God; and whatsoever we ask we receive of him, because we keep his commandments and do the things that are pleasing in his sight. And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, even as he gave us commandment. (24)And he that keepeth his commandments abideth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he gave us."

Let's not confuse the issue, please. The Lord Christ summed up, aka: summary statement, the whole law by "loving God" and "loving neighbor" (the two tablets of the Ten Commandments). But the Gospels and the rest of the New Testament epistles elaborate what that summary means in great detail... thus the principle of the "Analogy of Faith"; comparing Scripture with Scripture and not simply doing a search for one word in a concordance. wink Scripturally, love is a Christian's motive, which is and MUST BE expressed in definable ways, according to God's revealed will; profession of right doctrine (truth) and exhibition of right living (holiness). BigThumbUp
_________________________


simul iustus et peccator


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#49198 - Friday, October 5, 2012 12:35 AM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
Sometimes your thoughts confuse me.

1.I do not see the point of your reference to 1 John 3:18. It does not take away the need to make love an essential. Do you want to clarify your intent?

2.Yes, verse 24 was a slip of the mouse.

3.I do not believe you know “what my issue is” and as a result, you believe I am confusing the issue. The issue I have is this: The obvious importance of love in the church is being neglected. Count the perdetage of times "the apostle who Jesus love" uses the word "love" in I John. Then compare that percentage of times with today's Christians literature. We have already seen it was left out of the who’s who list of essentials above. My study of the subject has show me that God “expects me” to see life through the lens of love 'all of the time'. Therefore “this is my story and this is my song” and I am not ashamed of it. Maybe, the short focus here will cause some to repent and begin to ask the important question: If God does His part, what part do I have to play to experience growth in love for God and man? There are good, better and best things that we can spend time on. When Martha complained to Jesus about good things that Mary was not doing, Jesus said “only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." I need to be like Mary!

4.I am confused by your question related to “Analogy of Faith". If your question is to say love is not an essential to salvation because it is not identical to faith, I believe John again can provide the proof in 1 John 3:14. It says, “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.”

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#49199 - Friday, October 5, 2012 5:45 AM Re: What is essential [Re: Wayne@purpose]
Pilgrim Offline

Head Honcho

Registered: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Posts: 13355
Loc: NH, USA
Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
Sometimes your thoughts confuse me.

1.I do not see the point of your reference to 1 John 3:18. It does not take away the need to make love an essential. Do you want to clarify your intent?

Sorry if you are sometimes confused by my responses.

My point in referencing and including 1Jh 3:18 is because in it an inextricable part of the CONTEXT of that passage and without it, "love" can be easily and often is miscontrued to be something other than it is. In the world today and in the modern Church, love is defined as strictly an emotive experience. But in Scripture, as seen in the self-revelation of God and the teachings of Christ and the apostles, love is an action which may or may not be attached with an emotion. "[My] Little children, let us not love in word, neither with the tongue; but in deed and truth." Throughout the OT, this is how God is revealed, a God who moves among the inhabitants of the earth and demands righteousness, holiness and justice on penalty of death. Even God's love is holy, but it cannot be said that God's holiness is love. scratchchin

Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
3.I do not believe you know “what my issue is” and as a result, you believe I am confusing the issue. The issue I have is this: The obvious importance of love in the church is being neglected. Count the perdetage of times "the apostle who Jesus love" uses the word "love" in I John. Then compare that percentage of times with today's Christians literature. We have already seen it was left out of the who’s who list of essentials above. My study of the subject has show me that God “expects me” to see life through the lens of love 'all of the time'. Therefore “this is my story and this is my song” and I am not ashamed of it. Maybe, the short focus here will cause some to repent and begin to ask the important question: If God does His part, what part do I have to play to experience growth in love for God and man? There are good, better and best things that we can spend time on. When Martha complained to Jesus about good things that Mary was not doing, Jesus said “only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." I need to be like Mary!

Perhaps you should explain how your perception of the modern church has concluded that it lacks love? Even more helpful would be if you stated your definition of Biblical love. That would certainly go a long way to then considering your concern of the lack of love in the modern church.

Personally, what I see lacking in the modern church is 1) Truth and 2) Holiness. The modern church is fraught with all kinds of heretical teachers and doctrines. Even the Gospel itself has been radically changed so that it is now "another Gospel" (Gal 1:7,9). And secondly, the law of God has been relegated to ancient history and has no part in the church today. The first table of the law is everywhere being violated with worldliness being brought into the worship of God, idolatry is openly practiced and the 2nd Commandment rejected out of hand, God's name is blasphemed by word and deed among professing Christians and lastly, the Sabbath has not only been neglected, those who seek to keep it holy are ridiculed and labeled 'legalists'. True faith is rarely found among the members of the modern church; Assensus, Sandemanianism is what most possess along with a false sense of assurance of salvation. In short, what is sorely lacking is those who are like the man of Psalm 1:

"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the wicked, Nor standeth in the way of sinners, Nor sitteth in the seat of scoffers:
But his delight is in the law of Jehovah; And on his law doth he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the streams of water, That bringeth forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also doth not wither; And whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
The wicked are not so, But are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For Jehovah knoweth the way of the righteous; But the way of the wicked shall perish." Psalms 1:1-6 (ASV)

Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
4.I am confused by your question related to “Analogy of Faith". If your question is to say love is not an essential to salvation because it is not identical to faith, I believe John again can provide the proof in 1 John 3:14. It says, “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.”

1. Analogy of Faith = comparing all that the Bible has to say about a particular subject.

2. The topic in this thread actually concerned what "doctrines" are to be considered essential of one's profession of faith. An example I might offer you is one may say they "love Christ" but deny His deity (JW, Mormon, etc.) One may say they love the brethren which can be seen in exemplary beneficence to the church and even extending to the poor, etc., but believe that salvation is merited through grace + 'good works'. True faith always expresses itself in adhering to and loving TRUTH and in HOLINESS. One is excommunicated from the assembly of the saints, the church, for being errant in doctrine and/or life. I have never read in any literature, going back as far as the Early Church Fathers, that one must confess "love" to become a member of the Church. Nor, have I ever read that someone was cast out of the Church because they did not have enough "love". So, "I" am confused why you want to make it an "essential" requirement. I am certainly not disputing the fact that a true Christian WILL love God and his neighbor as himself. What I'm saying is that this spirit-wrought love of a true Christian will be expressed outwardly in word, deed and truth. A true love of God, for example, will be expressed in biblical worship vs. 'worship' which is man-made and man-centered.

3. 1John 3:14 does not address the matter of "faith". The intent of the Spirit, speaking through John is in regard to "assurance" of salvation which can be discerned in part from one's love of the brethren.

Looking forward to your response(s) to #3 above. grin
_________________________


simul iustus et peccator


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#49201 - Saturday, October 6, 2012 5:32 AM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
Does the following answer your questions?

God is Essential, the Holy Spirit is God, God is Love, Love is the Holy Spirit, Love is Essential

1 Cor 13:1-13
• If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
• If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
• And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.
• Love is patient,
• love is kind and is not jealous;
• love does not brag and is not arrogant,
• does not act unbecomingly;
• it does not seek its own, is not provoked,
• does not take into account a wrong suffered,
• does not rejoice in unrighteousness,
• but rejoices with the truth;
• bears all things,
• believes all things,
• hopes all things,
• endures all things.
• Love never fails;
• but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away;
• if there are tongues, they will cease;
• if there is knowledge, it will be done away.
• For we know in part and we prophesy in part;
• but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away.
• When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child;
• when I became a man, I did away with childish things.
• For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face;
• now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known.
• But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
NASU

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#49202 - Saturday, October 6, 2012 5:55 AM Re: What is essential [Re: Wayne@purpose]
Pilgrim Offline

Head Honcho

Registered: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Posts: 13355
Loc: NH, USA
Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
Does the following answer your questions?

God is Essential, the Holy Spirit is God, God is Love, Love is the Holy Spirit, Love is Essential

No, that doesn't answer my question(s):

Originally Posted By: Pilgrim
Perhaps you should explain how your perception of the modern church has concluded that it lacks love? Even more helpful would be if you stated your definition of Biblical love. That would certainly go a long way to then considering your concern of the lack of love in the modern church.

1. Your syllogism is grossly fractured and illogical, unfortunately.
2. Your 4th statement is contradictory to your 2nd statement and it is seriously heretical: Love is the Holy Spirit.
3. Simply copy/pasting 1Cor 13 doesn't work. It also might reveal a serious problem with your functional hermeneutic. IF you believe that 1 Cor 13 is THE biblical definition of "love", then all and any other mention of love in the Bible MUST BE understood through the lens of 1 Cor 13. Is that really what you are suggesting?

On the contrary, I believe that each and every mention of love in the Bible must be understood according to the CONTEXT in which it is found. After considering ALL of the appearances, allusions and examples of love from Genesis to Revelation, only then can one arrive at a true definition of love. Perhaps it would help to remind you that no one can "love" someone or something that they do not know. Could your perception of a lack of love in the modern church be somehow related to this fact? scratchchin
_________________________


simul iustus et peccator


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#49203 - Saturday, October 6, 2012 5:11 PM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
I confess that the time I put into my last response was far less than what the subject deserved. I will do a better in my next reply.

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#49211 - Sunday, October 7, 2012 11:18 PM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
You said:
Perhaps you should explain how your perception of the modern church has concluded that it lacks love?
I say:
My perceptions are limited to one man’s “part time” view of the subject and therefore not really important. God’s word on this subject is infinitely more accurate and important:
Matt 24:9-14 Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. "At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. "Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. "Because lawlessness is increased, most people's love will grow cold. "But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved. "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. NASU
Rev 2:2-5 'I know your deeds and your toil and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false; and you have perseverance and have endured for My name's sake, and have not grown weary. 'But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. 'Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place — unless you repent. NASU
Rev 3:15-17 'I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. 'So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. NASU


You said:
Even more helpful would be if you stated your definition of Biblical love. That would certainly go a long way to then considering your concern of the lack of love in the modern church.
I say:
I do not have “a definition” of Christian Love. I believe the Holy Spirit has helped me construct a summary. The summary was to be posted in this forum but it got posted in the open forum some time ago. The definitions that matter to this post are the definitions of love in the following verses:
1 John 4:8 The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. NASU
The Greek word for love that appears underlined in the above verse is the word agape (ag-ah'-pay). It is defined as “from NT:25; love, i.e. affection or benevolence; specially (plural) a love-feast;KJV - (feast of) charity ([-ably]), dear, love” in Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary.
1 John 3:14-15 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. NASU
The Greek word for love that appears underlined in the above verse is the word agapao (ag-ap-ah'-o) and is defined as “perhaps from agan (much) [or compare OT:5689]; to love (in a social or moral sense). KJV - (be-) love (-ed). Compare NT:5368.” in Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary
&#8195;

You said:
Your syllogism is grossly fractured and illogical, unfortunately. Your 4th statement is contradictory to your 2nd statement and it is seriously heretical: Love is the Holy Spirit.
1. God is Essential,
2. the Holy Spirit is God,
3. God is Love,
4. Love is the Holy Spirit,
5. Love is Essential
I say:
Hummm, I believe the thing you are missing is how the Holy Spirit works in the heart of the believer. When God’s love shines through us, it is the shinning of the Holy Spirit. In this sense, “love is the Holy Spirit” and in this sense “it is essential”.
Matt 5:16 "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. NASU

You said:
Simply copy/pasting 1Cor 13 doesn't work. It also might reveal a serious problem with your functional hermeneutic.
I say:
The copy/pasting of 1 Cor 13 was to give you examples the Holy Spirit shinning through the believe via love. Surely you don’t think all that is in 1 Cor 13 can be accomplished by man’s love do you?

You said:
I believe that each and every mention of love in the Bible must be understood according to the CONTEXT in which it is found. After considering ALL of the appearances, allusions and examples of love from Genesis to Revelation, only then can one arrive at a true definition of love.
I say:
I see the issue differently.
While being one of the most essential doctrines of the Bible, the doctrine of love is one of the simplest to understand and should be able to be understood by a child in my opinion.
Matt 18:1-4 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, "Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" And He called a child to Himself and set him before them, and said, "Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. "Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” NASU
I also say:
A doctrine of love should contain “God’s love for man” and “man’s love for God”. Can you see the ingredients for a doctrine of love in the following passages?
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” NASU
2 Cor 5:14-15 For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf. NASU
&#8195;
You said:
Perhaps it would help to remind you that no one can "love" someone or something that they do not know. Could your perception of a lack of love in the modern church be somehow related to this fact?
I say:
As I said above, my perception of the modern church does not matter. It is God’s perception of the modern Church that matters. With regard to ”the perception of the modern church”, I have a few questions:
Mark 12:28-34 One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, "What commandment is the foremost of all?" Jesus answered, "The foremost is, HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.' "The second is this, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.' There is no other commandment greater than these." The scribe said to Him, "Right, Teacher; You have truly stated that HE IS ONE, AND THERE IS NO ONE ELSE BESIDES HIM; AND TO LOVE HIM WITH ALL THE HEART AND WITH ALL THE UNDERSTANDING AND WITH ALL THE STRENGTH, AND TO LOVE ONE'S NEIGHBOR AS HIMSELF, is much more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices." When Jesus saw that he had answered intelligently, He said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." After that, no one would venture to ask Him any more questions. NASU
Mark 10:25-27 "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." They were even more astonished and said to Him, "Then who can be saved?" Looking at them, Jesus said, "With people it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God." NASU
• What perception does the modern church have of the passages above?
• Can they see that God has an “expectation” here? If so, what expectation do they see? Do they realize that it is essential to see this expectation “from God’s point of view” and not from a perspective based on their own personal experience with the commandment; to the point that they assume God does not really mean “all” when he says it?
• Do they really believe “all” things are possible with God and the “all” includes “all” in the passage above?
I also say:
Matt 22:34-40 But when the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered themselves together. One of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?" And He said to him, " 'YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.' "This is the great and foremost commandment. "The second is like it, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.' "On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets." NASU
Rom 13:10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. NASU
• Does the modern church know why Jesus said “on these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets”?
• Do they know why Paul said “love is the fulfillment of the law”?
• If the answer is no in both cases, that may be why they say “love not essential”











Prov 1:5 “A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel” NASU

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#49213 - Tuesday, October 9, 2012 8:32 AM Re: What is essential [Re: Wayne@purpose]
Pilgrim Offline

Head Honcho

Registered: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Posts: 13355
Loc: NH, USA
Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
You said:
Perhaps you should explain how your perception of the modern church has concluded that it lacks love?
I say:
My perceptions are limited to one man’s “part time” view of the subject and therefore not really important. God’s word on this subject is infinitely more accurate and important:

But it is YOUR understanding and application of God's Word that is being discussed and questioned, and not God's infallible Word that is being questioned. wink

Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
You said:
Even more helpful would be if you stated your definition of Biblical love. That would certainly go a long way to then considering your concern of the lack of love in the modern church.
I say:
I do not have “a definition” of Christian Love. I believe the Holy Spirit has helped me construct a summary.

Ancillary to what you wrote above, you have gone even further and now apparently you are attempting to give serious weight to your view(s) by bringing in the "help" of the Holy Spirit. What it seems you are now stating is that God Himself, in the person of the Holy Spirit is behind what you are espousing. Thus, I nor anyone else should be too hasty to disagree with you. scratchchin

I could just as easily state that my disagreements with your view(s) aren't simply my own, but the Holy Spirit has helped me see their error(s) and/or inconsistencies with Scripture.

Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
You said:
Your syllogism is grossly fractured and illogical, unfortunately. Your 4th statement is contradictory to your 2nd statement and it is seriously heretical: Love is the Holy Spirit.
1. God is Essential,
2. the Holy Spirit is God,
3. God is Love,
4. Love is the Holy Spirit,
5. Love is Essential
I say:
Hummm, I believe the thing you are missing is how the Holy Spirit works in the heart of the believer. When God’s love shines through us, it is the shinning of the Holy Spirit. In this sense, “love is the Holy Spirit” and in this sense “it is essential”.

I must tell you that it grieves me to see you trying to defend a most serious heretical statement after it has been pointed out to you. Are you so obsessed with your thesis that you would deny the doctrine of the Trinity to promote it?

Once again, the statement, "love is the Holy Spirit" is heresy of the first order. And I'll try to explain this in very simple terms:

1. A "predicate nominative" in linguistics refers to a sentence where the subject and the predicate are one and the same. For example, "John is the President." is equivalent to "The President is John." We have a biblical example in John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." It would be and is 100% correct to then state that "God was the Word". In short, the PERSON named "the Word" IS the PERSON named "GOD".

2. In contrast, you have stated, "God is love, the Holy Spirit is God, love is the Holy Spirit". The error should be more than perspicuous at this point? "Love" is an attribute of God, Who is a being consisting of three PERSONS. The Holy Spirit, being one of those PERSONS, shares the ATTRIBUTE of love. But it is totally incorrect, therefore to conclude that the person IS the attribute. If "love" (an attribute) IS the Holy Spirit, then the Holy Spirit is not a PERSON, thus effectly denying the third person of the divine Trinity. Even more simply put, love and the Holy Spirit are not equivalent.

Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
You said:
Perhaps it would help to remind you that no one can "love" someone or something that they do not know. Could your perception of a lack of love in the modern church be somehow related to this fact?
I say:
As I said above, my perception of the modern church does not matter. It is God’s perception of the modern Church that matters.

My response would be the same as #1 and #2 above.

Proverbs 1:2-5 (ASV) "To know wisdom and instruction; To discern the words of understanding; To receive instruction in wise dealing, In righteousness and justice and equity; To give prudence to the simple, To the young man knowledge and discretion: That the wise man may hear, and increase in learning; And that the man of understanding may attain unto sound counsels:"
_________________________


simul iustus et peccator


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#49301 - Wednesday, November 7, 2012 11:50 AM Re: What is essential [Re: John_C]
Wayne@purpose Offline
Newbie

Registered: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Posts: 36
Loc: Houston Texas
More scripture to support the conclusion that "love is essential"!

Luke 10:25-28

25 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and made trial of him, saying, Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
26 And he said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?
27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself.
28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. ASV

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#49302 - Thursday, November 8, 2012 12:23 AM Re: What is essential [Re: Wayne@purpose]
Tom Offline
Needs to get a Life

Registered: Sunday, April 8, 2001
Posts: 3910
Loc: Kelowna, British Columbia, Can...
Originally Posted By: Wayne@purpose
More scripture to support the conclusion that "love is essential"!

Luke 10:25-28

25 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and made trial of him, saying, Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
26 And he said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?
27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself.
28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. ASV


I probably shouldn't say anything, but I can't get past the feeling that you are totally misunderstanding what Pilgrim is saying.
I don't think anyone least of all Pilgrim would disagree with anything this passage is saying.
That has nothing to do with your assertion that the Holy Spirit is an attribute. Love is an attribute among many the Trinity possesses and I would state that God's holiness is probably the attribute that I believe stands out more than love itself.

I would ask that you deal directly with what Pilgrim said to you.

Tom

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