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gives grace to the humble #931
Mon Jul 08, 2002 8:30 PM
Mon Jul 08, 2002 8:30 PM

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<center>[Linked Image] [color:red]This post and all replies was moved from</font color=red> Revelation 22:19 Contradicts Calvinist Doctrine</center><br><br>Sure, don't you see? Good people are saved and bad people aren't! [Linked Image]

Last edited by Pilgrim; Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:00 PM.
Re: gives grace to the humble #932
Sun Jul 14, 2002 8:13 PM
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yeah, "good people" like this Saul of Tarsus. He was such a sweet heart when God saved him. <br><br>blessings,

Not good, humble #933
Tue Jul 30, 2002 9:46 AM
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Dear ReformedSBC,<br><br>"Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself? Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time? It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all." (Ecclesiastes 7:16-18)<br><br>God saves those who will hear Him, not those that are 'good.' <br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Not good, humble #934
Tue Jul 30, 2002 11:13 AM
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God saves those who will hear Him, not those that are 'good.' <br><br>Nope. [Linked Image] God saves his own people, whom he died for; his sheep whom he enables to hear his voice. <br><br>Matt 1:21 "...you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."<br><br>John 10:26 "but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me"<br>

Re: Not good, humble #935
Tue Jul 30, 2002 11:31 AM
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Reply ReformedSbc. <br><br>Dear brother JoshT,<br><br>Good see that you are back. I pray that you do well on your exams. But now back to the subject at hand.<br><br>I would like to add 2 more scriputes that speak on the issue of who are 'those [who] will hear him' and those who wont. <br><br><br>John 8:46 <br>Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? "[color:red]He who is of God hears the words of God</font color=red>; for this reason you [color:red]do not hear them, because you are not of God</font color=red>." <br><br>John 1:12-13<br>But as many as [color:red]received Him</font color=red>, to them He gave the right to become (15) children of God, even (16) to those [color:red]who believe</font color=red> in His name, <br>13 (17) [color:red]WHO WERE BORN</font color=red>, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, [color:red]but OF GOD</font color=red>. <br><br><br>Is this not clear????? I think the grammar and the flow is pretty clear.<br><br>A. God regenerates the person (" born of God") [john 3]. Remember, natural man is "DEAD", spiritually. That is why they are regenerated; it gives spritual life, gives them a ' heart of flesh'. Thus:<br><br>B) they 'hear' & 'believe' and love the word of God and accept Christ as Lord and Savior. <br><br>JoshT that is why in John 3 it is stated that unless one is born again, He "[color:red]CANNOT SEE</font color=red>" the kingdom of God. Natural man is "BLIND". That my brother is the scriptures, NOT some man made tradition or philosphy.<br><br><br><br>I pray to God that HE would open your hear to listen to scripture. <br><br><br>brother,<br>Carlos<br><br>

Last edited by carlos; Tue Jul 30, 2002 11:51 AM.

"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
Re: Not good, humble [Re: carlos] #936
Tue Jul 30, 2002 11:47 AM
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...looks clear to me. [Linked Image]<br><br>From last eve's Bible study....I want to add something I've overlooked...in John 6.<br><br>John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. <br>45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. [color:red]Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. </font color=red><br><br>Notice how it's the Father/Spirit acting FIRST that precedes the "coming" unto Jesus. And none who are unregenerate come ...but only SHEEP come (and stay by the keeping of the Shepherd who goes back after even the One) with their one and only love. <br><br>In Him,

Re: Not good, humble #937
Tue Jul 30, 2002 5:49 PM
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Josh,<br><br><blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p>[color:"blue"]God saves those who will hear Him, not those that are 'good.'</font><p><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Is it not a 'good' thing to hear God? Is it not a 'good' thing to humble yourself before God? <br><br>I hope that you agree that these are very good things. However, they are not the foundation of our salvation. For none of our good works are the basis for our salvation, however, Christ alone is the basis for our salvation.<br><br>Sincerely,<br>Ehud<br>

Good things vs. good people [Re: Ehud] #938
Sat Aug 24, 2002 1:45 AM
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Dear Ehud,<br><br>"Is it not a 'good' thing to hear God? Is it not a 'good' thing to humble yourself before God?"<br><br>You are confusing good things with good people. Men can do nothing good apart from God's grace, so it is ultimately only through God that we can hear God.<br><br>IRT:<br>"I hope that you agree that these are very good things. However, they are not the foundation of our salvation. For none of our good works are the basis for our salvation, however, Christ alone is the basis for our salvation."<br><br>You are confusing the basis with a requirement. You are also confusing hearing with works; if hearing is a work, then faith comes by works (Romans 10:17).<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Not good, humble #939
Sat Aug 24, 2002 1:48 AM
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<br>Dear ReformedSBC,<br><br>I wrote:<br>"God saves those who will hear Him, not those that are 'good.'"<br><br>You wrote:<br>"Nope. God saves his own people, whom he died for; his sheep whom he enables to hear his voice."<br><br>Jesus died for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2), but not everyone hears Him. I have already proven under the argument 'Characteristics of Sheep' that the sheep spoken of in John 10 are those who already follow God. One primary reason is that Christ's sheep will not follow the voice of a stranger. If it is true that all of the elect are sheep before they accept Christ, then no one who ever joined a cult could be saved, because they have heard the voice of another, and therefore cannot be one of Christ's sheep. This is of course untrue, because one becomes a sheep when they hear Christ's voice and follow Him.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Grace, not regeneration [Re: carlos] #940
Sat Aug 24, 2002 1:53 AM
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Dear Carlos,<br><br>IRT:<br>"John 8:46 <br>Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? "He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God. <br><br>John 1:12-13<br>But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become (15) children of God, even (16) to those who believe in His name, <br>13 (17) WHO WERE BORN, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but OF GOD. <br><br><br>Is this not clear????? I think the grammar and the flow is pretty clear."<br><br><br>It is very clear. The phrase 'because you are not of God' indicates that God did not choose to give His grace to these individuals because He knew that they would harden their hearts against the truth and against His grace. The phrase 'WHO WERE BORN, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but OF GOD' makes it clear that it is not man who has sought God, but God who has sought man and chosen certain of them to be saved (based on His foreknowledge). No problems from either passage.<br><br>IRT:<br>"A. God regenerates the person (" born of God") [john 3]. Remember, natural man is 'DEAD', spiritually. That is why they are regenerated; it gives spritual life, gives them a ' heart of flesh'. Thus:<br><br>B) they 'hear' & 'believe' and love the word of God and accept Christ as Lord and Savior."<br><br>Men are not born of God or regenerated before they are saved-- there is no Biblical indication of this. God sheds His grace upon them, enabling them to humble themselves, hear Him, repent, and believe the truth. The 'heart of flesh' is given by God to those who are born again. Note in Ezekiel 11, that God will give Israel this after they show the fruits of repentance, not before.<br><br>IRT:<br>"JoshT that is why in John 3 it is stated that unless one is born again, He "CANNOT SEE" the kingdom of God. Natural man is 'BLIND'."<br><br>The kingdom of God in John 3 refers to the eternal kingdom. In other words, one cannot see God's eternal kingdom unless he is saved. Natural man is blind, until God gives him grace enabling him to see.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Not good, humble [Re: lazarus] #941
Sat Aug 24, 2002 2:02 AM
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<br>Dear Lazarus,<br><br>IRT:<br>"Notice how it's the Father/Spirit acting FIRST that precedes the 'coming' unto Jesus."<br><br>I agree with that.<br><br>IRT:<br>"And none who are unregenerate come ...but only SHEEP come (and stay by the keeping of the Shepherd who goes back after even the One) with their one and only love."<br><br>I don't see how you can draw that from,<br><br> "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me."<br><br>since it says nothing about the unregenerate or non-sheep. It does say that those who have heard will come to Him, which is exactly what I have been saying. While it does say that the good Shepherd goes after His sheep, there is no indication that a wayward sheep will invariably return. To read that would be imposing other meaning on the text. <br>Consider what the scripture says about perseverance, <br><br>"That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us." (2 Timothy 1:14)<br><br>and<br><br>"But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." (Jude 1:29-21)<br><br>So while it is only by God's grace and Spirit that we can endure, we do have a daily decision to make as well: to yield to God's grace and follow the Spirit.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh<br>

Re: Good things vs. good people #942
Sat Aug 24, 2002 10:05 AM
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JoshT,<br><br>Okay, then let me restate what I said.<br><br>Why is it that any of us who are sinners, who are enemies of God, who hate God, despise the things of God, who love our sins and are desperately wicked, who hate to hear things such as repentance and who are all together worthless, <br>why is it that any of us would ever become genuinely interrested in salvation. <br><br>Why does one become interested and the other remains hardened? What is the difference in you than a lost person? <br><br>Ehud<br><br>

Grace [Re: Ehud] #943
Tue Aug 27, 2002 1:50 PM
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Dear Ehud,<br><br>IRT:<br>"Why is it that any of us who are sinners, who are enemies of God, who hate God, despise the things of God, who love our sins and are desperately wicked, who hate to hear things such as repentance and who are all together worthless, <br>why is it that any of us would ever become genuinely interrested in salvation."<br><br>Grace. Without grace, no one could seek God, become humble before Him, or repent. I think we can agree on that much. The difference is that I think God's grace can be resisted by men who see the truth, but then want to harden their hearts against it.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Grace #944
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:13 PM
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:13 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]The difference is that I think God's grace can be resisted by men who see the truth, but then want to harden their hearts against it.

[color:purple]1 Corinthians 4:7 "For who maketh thee to differ [from another]? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive [it], why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received [it]?"

There appears to be a clear contradiction between what you believe/stated and what the inspired Apostle has written. If, as you say, all men have received an "equal measure of enabling 'grace'" then that which makes them to differ is their will and or willingness to cooperate with that grace! Again, your view denigrates grace and relegates it to a mere "influence" which does not actually save in and of itself. Man's will is the actual and proximate cause of salvation. Your position is indefensible.

Arminius and his followers tried to get the true church to return to Rome and it's semi-Pelagianism back in 1618 with this very same heresy. And after 18 months of deliberation a unanimous decision was rendered against them. See here: The Canons of Dordt It just goes to show that Solomon spoke the truth: "There is nothing new under the sun!"


In His Grace,


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Re: Grace #945
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:27 PM
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Josh,<br><br>I can't add a whole lot to what has been said, but would you go on record as saying that you cause yourself to differ from another?<br><br>In His Grace,<br><br>Ron

Re: Grace [Re: Pilgrim] #946
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:33 PM
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Dear Pilgrim,<br><br>IRT:<br>"1 Corinthians 4:7 'For who maketh thee to differ [from another]? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive [it], why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received [it]?'<br><br>There appears to be a clear contradiction between what you believe/stated and what the inspired Apostle has written. If, as you say, all men have received an "equal measure of enabling 'grace' then that which makes them to differ is their will and or willingness to cooperate with that grace!"<br><br>There is no contradiction. The way in which we differ is that we are saved and have the Holy Spirit living in us (a thing which God obviously did). This is not speaking of how men differ from each other with regards to how they will receive God's grace.<br><br>IRT:<br>"Again, your view denigrates grace and relegates it to a mere 'influence' which does not actually save in and of itself. Man's will is the actual and proximate cause of salvation. Your position is indefensible."<br><br>Grace is not mere influence, but I compare it to a lifeboat sent to drowning men. It is true that a decision by the man is necessary for him to be saved (for God has ordained it be so), but whether they accept or reject their salvation, it is still grace that saves. So man does not bring about his own salvation, but the acceptance of God's grace is the only way that he can in any sense 'save himself' (Acts 2:40).<br><br>It makes little difference to me what churches did what to who's proposals, the Bible is very clear on the matter. There are conditions man must meet if he is to be saved, and there are conditions to meet if he is to remain in God's grace. Notable examples of those who fell from grace by rejecting it and following another gospel appear in Galatians 5.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Differing from another #947
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:41 PM
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Dear Ron,<br><br>The scripture that Pilgrim pointed out in 1 Corinthians 4:7 refers to salvation, not to what we are like; so I will go on record as saying I did not atone for my sin or fill me with the Holy Ghost. Why would God elect us according to His foreknowledge (1 Peter 1:2) if He had already decided what we would be like? Why would He need to foreknow the result of what He was already doing? So in the sense of who makes the decision to receive God's grace and follow Jesus Christ, we do. But in the sense of who makes those who accept the gospel different from this present sinful world, it is God.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Grace #948
Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:53 PM
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I don't think the lifeboat example cuts it. The biblical model would be for the life-saver to find me already drowned (ie., dead in trespasses and sin) and beyond hope (fish food) ....you know...like Lazarus. <br><br>It's only after life has been breathed back into me that I begin to appreciate what's been done for me and respond accordingly. Only is this fashion can I truly say that salvation is 100% of God, 0% of me, lest this man boast. <br><br>A former 'dead guy'....

Re: Grace #949
Tue Aug 27, 2002 3:43 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Grace is not mere influence, but I compare it to a lifeboat sent to drowning men. It is true that a decision by the man is necessary for him to be saved (for God has ordained it be so), but whether they accept or reject their salvation, it is still grace that saves. So man does not bring about his own salvation, but the acceptance of God's grace is the only way that he can in any sense 'save himself' (Acts 2:40).

Did you take a night course on learning "Double Talk" or does it just come naturally? [Linked Image]

Let's take your unbiblical illustration; unbiblical as Lazarus pointed out to you in his reply because men are not "drowning" but they are drowned and lying on the bottom of the ocean stone dead. You posed a situation where a man is drowning and someone happens by and throws out a life-saving device. If the person grabs hold of it, he is saved. If he chooses not to grab hold of it, he will perish. However, even granting for the sake of argument that men are merely drowning and not as the Bible teaches, they are long since drowned and dead, let's go with an actual situation where there are more than just one person in the water. The disagreement is over what distinguishes one person from another in the matter of salvation. So, let's put two drowning men in the water. These two men represent the entire human race; those who will be saved and those who will be lost.

God, not being a respecter of persons, by your definition, throws out a life-saving device to both men. This device is representative of what you deem to be "grace". Each device lands exactly the same distance from the two men. Thus, there sits "grace" in the water easily within reach of both men. So far, everything is equal in all respects. Both men in the same water, both drowning, both with "grace" sitting directly in front of them and easily within reach. However, this "grace", as you are wanting to call it cannot save either man on its own. It is but an "aid" to their rescue and nothing more. It is powerless to actually save a drowning man. There is no inherent salvific power in your "grace".

Therefore, if either man is to be saved, there is something which must be added to that "grace", i.e., their determination, decision, and seizing hold of that lifesaving device, aka "grace". To now insist that there is nothing that differs between the two men is ludicrous. For in fact the ONLY thing that differs between the one who is saved and the one who perishes is the one's will and action. Thus salvation is not of Grace but of "grace" + works.

Let's turn this illustration around just to show how erroneous your view is even to plain old common sense. There are three men who are deeply in debt (again ignoring the biblical teaching that all men are born spiritual still-born). They are both equally deeply in debt. All three are given a million dollars with no attachments which is put in trust for them at a local bank. All three receive notification that this money is being held for them and all they need do is go down to the bank and claim it as their own. There are no "strings" attached, thus they are free to pay off all their debts and/or spend it as they will.

One man hurries down to the bank and withdraws his money, pays off all his debts and invests the remainder which will afford him financial security for the rest of his earthly life. A second man totally ignores the notification for one reason or another and consequently remains in his debt and dies poverty stricken. The third man however, like the first, runs down to the bank and also withdraws the million dollars. He sits down and begins writing checks to pay for his many debts. But after awhile he decides he would rather go on a cruise around the world. And in doing so wastes away all the money he had left. He too dies in debt.

Now, what we have here is an accurate display, using your definition of "grace" and why men are saved. The first man accepts the "gift" and uses it wisely and consequently he enjoys "salvation". The second man is one has the same "opportunity" and "possibility" of salvation but rejects it for some reason. And the third is one who initially has "salvation" but out of his love of the world fails to use it wisely and consequently looses it. So, tell me, what makes them to differ? It surely isn't that the one had an advantage over the others as far as "opportunity" is concerned. It surely wasn't that the one had more money than the others! It surely wasn't that the one had "real" money and the others were only offered or given counterfeit money. No..!! That which makes them to differ was themselves. The one's "salvation" was determined by his own will. Bottom line with your view:

[color:red]"grace" + WORKS = salvation


It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that you are embracing SYNERGISM while God's Word teaches MONOGISM!! (Jonah 2:9)


In His Grace,


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simul iustus et peccator

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Re: Grace #950
Tue Aug 27, 2002 10:47 PM
Tue Aug 27, 2002 10:47 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"] It is true that a decision by the man is necessary for him to be saved (for God has ordained it be so), but whether they accept or reject their salvation, it is still grace that saves.



This statement in itself shows that it is not grace that savews, but grace that might save, contingent on the persons active choice. Grace is unmerited favor, getting what one does not deserve, not conditional favor or potential to get what one does not deserve. This is clearly a misuse of terms.



Grace is but glory begun;
Glory is but grace perfected!
- Jonathan Edwards
Re: Differing from another #951
Wed Aug 28, 2002 8:10 AM
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Josh,

You said that you made the decision to receive Christ. Well of course you did. The question I am asking is why did you choose to come to Christ while another does not?

You further go on to say that God "makes" us accept the gospel and not the world. My question is, again, why do you accept the gospel while others embrace the world? To say that you did not atone for your sins or fill yourself with the Spirit does not really address the questions I am asking. I'm concerned with why your sins are atoned for while another's are not. To say that you chose Christ while others do not is to only push the question back one step. In other words, why did you choose Christ, while another chooses the world? Who caused you to differ from another in this regard?

In His Service, I hope.

Ron

Re: Grace #952
Wed Aug 28, 2002 5:55 PM
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Dear Josh,

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]I compare it to a lifeboat sent to drowning men


Did you happen to see the movie "Titanic?" There was a scene after the ship had sunk where there were hundreds and hundreds of bodies in the ocean, dead, frozen, still floating in their life jackets. One lifeboat, after much debate among the passengers and crew, finally decided to go back and try to "save some." The scene was eery as the boat went back in the dark of night and pushed through the lifeless (necros) frozen bodies that bobbed up and down like ice cubes in a punch bowl. There was nothing but silence, darkness, and cold, lifeless, necrotic bodies. The rescuers called and called, to no avail; no response, dead, lifeless.

Question: If the rescuers had, with the best intentions, thrown out a lifeline to those dead, frozen people floating in the ocean could they have grasp it, the lifeline, and saved themselves?

Of course you know the answer. This necrotic condition, deadness, is the condition of all men since the fall of our first parents. We cannot grasp the lifeline unless we are first made alive. We cannot come out of the tomb, like Lazarus, until the Lord effectually calls us through regeneration. We, like those poor, dead, necrotic bodies in "Titanic," cannot respond to the lifeline of the gospel unless we are vivified, made alive.

This appears to be the key to the argument that has been going on between you and other members of this board. The point that we Calvinists wish to stress is that you cannot, we cannot, no man can "decide" for Christ, obey him, or perform any other evangelical obedience until we are resurrected from death to life.

We believe that the Bible teaches that salvation is of the Lord from beginning to end. And so,

To God alone be the glory,
LEJ



Regeneration precedes faith #953
Thu Aug 29, 2002 11:04 AM
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Dear Josht

IN a previous post, I brought up verses John 8: 46 and John 1:12 -13 to indicate that they are clear in showing who are those who will hear and believe and those who wont.

JoshT reponded with the following:
In reply to:
[color:"blue"]

It is very clear. The phrase 'because you are not of God' indicates that God did not choose to give His grace to these individuals because He knew that they would harden their hearts against the truth and against His grace.



Carlos Responds: Talk about classic “eisegesis”. Please prove me from the text where it says God witheld His mercy and grace to them ‘because HE KNEW that that they would harden their hearts agains the truth and against His grace”. Yes, the passage speaks of God had not chosen them. They were not his; as John 10:26 has the similar statement that “but you do not believe because you are not my sheep”. Yes, God never opened their hearts and their ears so that they would accept the gospel. But I am interested to find where in the text it says that God did withold his grace from these pharisees ‘because He knew’ that they would hardern their hearts againt the truth and his grace. For infact, all men in their natural state, behave like the pharisees in this contex; that is they reject the truth. Onfly after God has given ears to hears, can any one accept the truth. The hearing ear and the seeing eye, the LORD has made them both” (Pr. 20:12).


JoshT Continued with the following:

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
The phrase 'WHO WERE BORN, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but OF GOD' makes it clear that it is not man who has sought God, but God who has sought man and chosen certain of them to be saved (based on His foreknowledge). No problems from either passage.



Carlos writes: Do you always read into the scriptures with your “God-forsees glasses”?[Linked Image] That seems to be your number 1 hermeneutic presupposotion. The passage[john 1:12-13] means what it says. God regenerates , gives spritiual birth to the natural man. As Eph 2 says, God “made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions.” This occurs without any doing on the part of the un-regenerate. As that passage state, “not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man. Not even the arminians’s beloved “free-will”. God regenerates irrespective to any of those things. James 1:18 ...”Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth..” . God ‘monergisticly’ imparts spiritual life( i.e man is passive and God is the only one active). Just as a baby had no part in his beginnings of his/her birth, so it is with the regenerate. The idea of resurrection to life also supports this. "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life... Therefore have I told you that no man can come to me, unless it be given to him by my Father." ( John 6:63,65) . 1 John 3:8 “The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit “. God is not only seeking man, He is regenerating them. That’s the meaning of the passage. Why Regeneration? Because the un-regenerated does not accept the things of God, and they are foolishness to him, as 1 coritians 2:12-14 demonstrate. His nature is bent agaisnt God( romans 1). The total depravity of man runs throughtout scripture. So how can one who is dead in their sins, who walks according to his lust and nature chose God? One word: The new birth. Thus, God gives life to people who are dead in the sins so then they can accept things of God and believe in Him. As John 1 passage says, Those who believe, “Who were born... of God”. The birth preceded the belief. "Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God ( 1 john 5:1)" . The greek tenses of the verbs make point very clear: As John Piper states “Every one who goes on believing [present particle denoting a continuous action] that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God [perfect, completed action with abiding effects].

God chose to give birth to them because of HIS GRACE...HIs Kind intention..Because It pleased him to do so.. not because of any forseen merit,etc or anthying seen in any man. As ephe 2:4 states, But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses,”. The Bible says “16It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's mercy.

Ofourse, the is no problem after you have twisted to the scripture to your liking. Anyone can do that. The problem is seen when the text is exegesized properly.


Originally I wrote

"A. God regenerates the person (" born of God") [john 3]. Remember, natural man is 'DEAD', spiritually. That is why they are regenerated; it gives spritual life, gives them a ' heart of flesh'. Thus:

B) they 'hear' & 'believe' and love the word of God and accept Christ as Lord and Savior."

JoshT reponded with the following:

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
Men are not born of God or regenerated before they are saved-- there is no Biblical indication of this. God sheds His grace upon them, enabling them to humble themselves, hear Him, repent, and believe the truth. The 'heart of flesh' is given by God to those who are born again. Note in Ezekiel 11, that God will give Israel this after they show the fruits of repentance, not before.



Carlos Writes: I have already demonstrated above that faith is fruit of the being born again(.i.e regeneration) and not the cause of it. The heart of flesh is given to those who initially have a heart of stone. “I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh” as the ezekial verse states . Are you imlying that those with a ‘heart of stone’ can believe and humble themselves??? I disagree with your intepretation of ezek 11. The point of that passage is that Since God will give them a undivided heart or a heart of flesh , in turn they will serve Him and not idols and keep his commandments, humble themselves, etc. Is it similar to Deut 30:5-7:
“He will bring you to the land that belonged to your fathers, and you will take possession of it. He will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers. 6 The Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live. “7

Notice it is God who is circumcising their hearts so that they will worhsip him.Wehn people repent and turn to Christ and serve Him it is because of God has wrought that work in them. They willingly turn to embrace the Savior since their hatred of God has been transformed to a love for Him.‘Repentance Unto life’ is a Gift from God.
“They glorified God, saying, ‘Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life’” (Acts 11:18).



I had written

"JoshT that is why in John 3 it is stated that unless one is born again, He "CANNOT SEE" the kingdom of God. Natural man is 'BLIND'."

JoshT reponded with:

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
The kingdom of God in John 3 refers to the eternal kingdom. In other words, one cannot see God's eternal kingdom unless he is saved. Natural man is blind, until God gives him grace enabling him to see.



I disagree. One can not see..that is He/She cannot perceive nor comprehend nor know the kingdom of God UNLESS is given spiriutal life by GOD, unless He is made a new creature. That passage is similar to 1 Cor 2:14: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned”. Being born again refers to the new birth( i.e regeneration) and not being saved. They are two dinsctict things. The new birth will lead to being saved. Although the two are necesserarily linked, they are separate things , just like sanctification and justification. That grace by which GOD is “enabling him[natural man] to see” is called REGENERATION. That is what the passages is reffering to. Conlusion: Natural man sees ONLY after He has been MADE ALIVE.He has to be born of the spirit before He can see, hear, know, and welcome the things of the the Spiirt, the things of God. “..Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. 13For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves ( col :12-13). Although the kingdom of God is spoken in various ways throughout the scripture, I believe john here is emphasizing entrace into the kingdom of God NOW according to the context. I would like to know you definition “Enabling”. I doubt very much you would describe it as I would, and I contend, as the bible does.
If you don’t agree I would like you to explain to me how then can it be possible for the unregenerate, who is dead in sin, enslaved to his sins, captive by satan, walks according the world, at enmity with God, hates the light, mocks the Gospel of Christ Crucified, can excercise exercise faith except He/She be first be made a new creature???


"Long my imprisoned spirit lay, Fast bound in sin and nature's night; Thine eye diffused a quickening ray; I woke: The dungeon flamed with light! My chains fell off, my heart was free, I rose, went forth, and followed Thee" --

Carlos



"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
Re: Grace #954
Thu Aug 29, 2002 11:31 AM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"] but the acceptance of God's grace is the only way that he can in any sense 'save himself'



So if God leaves up to man to accept His grace

WHY WOULD ANY SINNER WANT GOD'S GRACE SEEING THAT WE BY NATURE DO NOT WANT ANY PART OF GOD

Ephesians 2:2-5
"Wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lust of our flesh fulfilling the desires of the flesh of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath even as the others. But God who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherein he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath made us alive together with Christ, (by grace you are saved.)"

Here Paul emphatically states that while were in our miserable rebellion to God, while we loved our sin more than Him and while were just as the rest of humankind, it was there in that state(dead in sins) that God who was rich in mercy saved us(made us alive).

God grace is what changed us, and we didn't change to get God's grace. Christ came to save the sinners and not the righteous. He came to save those who were not "seekers" and those who were of a hard heart. He came to save those who were godless terrible people. He did not come to save those who were willing. If this were true then no one would be saved.

Sincerely,
Ehud


Re: Differing from another #955
Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:02 PM
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Dear Ron,

IRT:
"In other words, why did you choose Christ, while another chooses the world? Who caused you to differ from another in this regard?"

The decision to accept or reject the calling of God rests with each individual, for God has delegated to each man a responsibility for his soul. This concept is plainly derived from scripture. But as far as who made us differ in the context of the scripture Pilgrim quoted, God did, for it is ultimately God who justifies us.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: Grace [Re: Pilgrim] #956
Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:08 PM
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Dear Pilgrim,<br><br>IRT:<br>"There appears to be a clear contradiction between what you believe/stated and what the inspired Apostle has written. If, as you say, all men have received an "equal measure of enabling 'grace'" then that which makes them to differ is their will and or willingness to cooperate with that grace!"<br><br>That which makes us differ in the context of that scripture (referring to salvation) is Christ, but it was not referring to who made us differ in regards to deciding to follow God's call.<br><br>IRT:<br>"Again, your view denigrates grace and relegates it to a mere "influence" which does not actually save in and of itself. Man's will is the actual and proximate cause of salvation. Your position is indefensible."<br><br>Grace must be received to save a man. Man's compliance is necessary for salvation, but not the cause; and my position is clearly defended by scripture, as I have shown repeatedly.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: Grace [Re: Ehud] #957
Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:12 PM
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Dear Ehud,

IRT:
"WHY WOULD ANY SINNER WANT GOD'S GRACE SEEING THAT WE BY NATURE DO NOT WANT ANY PART OF GOD"

It is because when God shines His grace on a sinner, the sinner can then see the truth and accept it, it does not force him to, but allows him to.

IRT:
"God grace is what changed us, and we didn't change to get God's grace."

God's grace allowed us to change and accept it so that we could be saved.

IRT:
"Christ came to save the sinners and not the righteous. He came to save those who were not "seekers" and those who were of a hard heart. He came to save those who were godless terrible people. He did not come to save those who were willing. If this were true then no one would be saved."

True, but God's grace did not force them to seek Him or repent either, it simply sets before them the choice of life or death.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: Grace #958
Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:50 AM
Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:50 AM

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IRT:
"Question: If the rescuers had, with the best intentions, thrown out a lifeline to those dead, frozen people floating in the ocean could they have grasp it, the lifeline, and saved themselves?

Of course you know the answer. This necrotic condition, deadness, is the condition of all men since the fall of our first parents. We cannot grasp the lifeline unless we are first made alive. We cannot come out of the tomb, like Lazarus, until the Lord effectually calls us through regeneration. We, like those poor, dead, necrotic bodies in "Titanic," cannot respond to the lifeline of the gospel unless we are vivified, made alive."

You are overdrawing an analogy. There is no indication in the Bible that a person is made alive before they believe. A person, though spiritually dead, is not so dead as they cannot respond to the light of God's life giving grace. You might as well say that believers cannot be saved because they are dead with Christ!

"Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him" (Romans 6:8)

So trying to equate spiritually dead with being unable to answer God's call is an overdrawn analogy and logical fallacy.

"And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring." Acts 17:26-28


IRT:
"We believe that the Bible teaches that salvation is of the Lord from beginning to end."

Good. So do I, and the Lord has decreed that we must obey Him to be saved (Hebrews 5:9).


In Christ,
Josh

Re: Grace [Re: GottseiEhre] #959
Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:53 AM
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IRT:
"This statement in itself shows that it is not grace that savews, but grace that might save, contingent on the persons active choice."

Grace does save: It saves those who receive it. There is no grammatical contradiction there.

IRT:
"Grace is unmerited favor, getting what one does not deserve, not conditional favor or potential to get what one does not deserve. This is clearly a misuse of terms.""

Merits and conditions are two different things; fulfilling conditions does not make one deserve or merit anything; so the term is perfectly sound.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: Grace #960
Fri Mar 28, 2003 11:01 AM
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Merits and conditions are two different things; fulfilling conditions does not make one deserve or merit anything; so the term is perfectly sound.<br><br>At my work, there are conditions I must fulfill to merit a salary increase. I fail to see how the two are not related.<br><br>Thanks, <br>Steve


Grace is not common.
Re: Grace [Re: li0scc0] #961
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:01 AM
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Merits imply deserving or earning something, any merit can be a condition, but not all conditions are merits. No one merits God's grace or salvation, but God has decreed that we must believe to be saved. If God were obliged to save any that believe, then faith would be a merit; but God is not obliged to do anything for us, He does it out of His love and patience for those that heed His word.<br><br>Josh

Double talk [Re: Pilgrim] #962
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:25 AM
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:25 AM

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Dear Pilgrim,

Double talk? I majored in it (kidding)! Let me show you some right now.

First off, my illustration is not out of sync with the Bible, I double dare you to show me where it is. But your idea that men are so dead that they cannot respond to God in any way is. You are simply overdrawing an analogy, I might as well say since believers are crucified with Christ and are dead to sin (Romans 8) that we can no longer commit even the smallest sin, so your own argument is a double edged sword.

IRT:
"However, this 'grace', as you are wanting to call it cannot save either man on its own. It is but an 'aid' to their rescue and nothing more. It is powerless to actually save a drowning man. There is no inherent salvific power in your "grace"."

No, the life ring does not merely aid, but saves a drowning man (and may double as a seat cushion--kidding), it simply requires that the man embrace it. This is a condition, not a double payment. Your arguments are nothing more than word games.

IRT:
"Therefore, if either man is to be saved, there is something which must be added to that "grace", i.e., their determination, decision, and seizing hold of that lifesaving device, aka "grace". To now insist that there is nothing that differs between the two men is ludicrous. For in fact the ONLY thing that differs between the one who is saved and the one who perishes is the one's will and action. Thus salvation is not of Grace but of "grace" + works."

Your whole argument is based on the assumption that hearing God's call and responding to it are works, such is not Biblical, as I have doubly demonstrated in posts past. "Faith comes by works and works by the word of God--??" This puts your argument into a doctrinal double whammy.

IRT:
"It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that you are embracing SYNERGISM while God's Word teaches MONOGISM!! (Jonah 2:9)"

Jonah taught no such thing. While the price of salvation was paid solely by God, we must receive it. Consider

Luke 7:30, "But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him."

They did not receive the word of God and thereby rejected His counsel for themselves, showing that men do have a choice. But as I have said before and I will double emphasize here, it is not our choice that saves us, it is God's grace. We must receive God's grace, but to say that is 'adding' to grace is like saying that faith is added to grace because we are saved by grace through faith. This disproves your argument both logically and scripturally, putting it into double jeopardy.

I will give you a silly illustration in a double post below.


P.S.

IRT:
"And the third is one who initially has "salvation" but out of his love of the world fails to use it wisely and consequently looses it."

Losing has only a single 'o,' not a double.

**Parable Poem of the Boasting Fool** [Re: Pilgrim] #963
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:45 AM
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:45 AM

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Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I often get arguments such as:
"If you believe that you made a decision for Christ, then you also must think you earned/merited your salvation!"
or
"You think you saved yourself!"
and my favorite,
"If it was you who endured, or even if you had anything to do with it, you would have something to boast of, and God would be robbed of having all the glory in eternity, etc..."

For those of you who subscribe to such ideas, I have written a bit of a silly poem to illustrate how this kind of thinking stands up to reality, told from the perspective of my life, enjoy.


My name is Joshua Caleb T.
in ruse I tell no lie
I write to say that through my choices
I've become quite a wonderful guy

Even when I was young,
as I surmised, the good in me was realized
my dear aunt gave to me great gifts
that I would earn them, she pre-recognized

One year amidst mistletoe and candle
I unwrapped more Star Wars than a kid could handle
so I took the gift that was proffered
and gave a merry thanks to her

Now I fail to grasp how some fail to see
how this meritorious act hath made much of me
For as any can see, unless hindered by blindness
that it was my receiving and not her kindness

I chose to accept it, (tis' required in receiving),
and since I made that choice, then it's merited by me
so t'was then myself that got me the gift that evening
so it's plain then how truly generous am I, not she

But there's more to be told
if I may make inference
that my life's been preserved
by my wise perseverance

In boot camp where I was a soldier made,
we would shout and shoot and promenade
in the latter weeks as required of all
I chanced to throw my first grenade

of the dangers present, I could write vast tomes
for I throw almost as well as I write poems
but to impede the shrapnel's merciless cavalcade
the Army had constructed a strong barricade

"Stay behind the wall," the drill sergeant said
"You could lose your life if you lose your head"
"Throw as far as you can, then duck in the cleft,"
"and do not stray to the right or the left"

So I lobbed the explosive with all the force I could muster
my success was unequaled -- except maybe by Custer
I waited in tension as some seconds passed
then the roughly made shelter absorbed one more blast

Now I hope you can follow the trail I'm on
that my own wit and cunning brought me safe from the bomb
If you credit the cover, be duly reminded
that it was me, not the wall, that stood behind it

And so I brag freely, of perseverance perfected
my wisdom, not the bricks, hath the shrapnel deflected
Sure I strayed once or twice from the correct area
but after only fifty pushups, I got the idea

So you see friends and neighbors, what I've done is substantial
the gift-giver and shield were mere circumstantial
But if you say "Tis' expected! That's nothing to boast!"
then I say quite objective, "You are wiser than most"



In Christ,
Josh

Re: Grace [Re: lazarus] #964
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:47 AM
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Dear Laz,

As I have pointed out to Pilgrim, the 'dead' analogy is stretched a bit far. But if you still think I have reason to boast, then read my poem above.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: gives grace to the humble [Re: lazarus] #965
Mon Mar 31, 2003 10:51 AM
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Dear Laz,<br><br>Nope, he simply humbled himself and repented.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: gives grace to the humble #966
Mon Mar 31, 2003 12:28 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Nope, he simply humbled himself and repented.

Which is it:

    [*]Saul humbled himself and repented and therefore God chose to save him.[*]OR.. God's choice to save Saul from eternity precipitated the sending of the Holy Spirit Who made Saul alive and the fruit/evidence of that regenerating work of the Spirit was that Saul humbled himself and repented.[/LIST]In His Grace,


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simul iustus et peccator

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The correct answer is: [Re: Pilgrim] #967
Mon Mar 31, 2003 12:57 PM
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3. God chose to save Saul because He foreknew that Saul would humble himself and repent in the light of the God's grace.<br><br>In Christ,<br>Josh

Re: The correct answer is: #968
Mon Mar 31, 2003 1:03 PM
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Josh,
Good afternoon to you!
I believe that #'s 1 and 2 covered the bases. Your #3 (the correct answer, as you say), that God foreknew that Saul would humble and believe, is really the same as #1. In other words, #3 simply means God was dependent upon Saul...Saul would humble and believe, and thus God saved him. God's saving foreknowledge is still dependent upon what Saul would do.
Steve


Grace is not common.
Re: Double talk #969
Mon Mar 31, 2003 1:11 PM
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In reply to:
Double talk? I majored in it (kidding)! Let me show you some right now.

And you aptly demonstrated your prowess to speak "doubletalk" in the various statements of your reply. Delusion is so hard to escape from, isn't it! [Linked Image]
In reply to:
]But your idea that men are so dead that they cannot respond to God in any way is. You are simply overdrawing an analogy, blah, blah, blah . . .

To the contrary, I am simply accepting the biblical language in its proper context and thus iterating to you what it is teaching about being "dead in trespasses and sins. (cf. Gen 6:5; 8:21; Eccl 9:3; Jer 17:9 Mk 7:21-23; Jh 3:3, 5, 19; Rom 1:18ff; 8:7, 8; 1Cor 2:14; Eph 2:1-5; 4:17-19; 5:8; Titus 1:15. See also, Jh 8:34, 44; Rom 6:20; 2Tim 2:25, 26; Titus 3:3; 1Jh 3:10; 5:19; et al).

Jesus spoke cogently and clearly when He said, "No man [color:red]CAN (Gk: dunatai) come unto me unless the Father Who sent me [color:red]draw (Gk: elkuw [cf. Jh 18:10; 21:6, 11; Acts 21:30) him." (Jh 6:44)

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]No, the life ring does not merely aid, but saves a drowning man (and may double as a seat cushion--kidding), it simply requires that the man embrace it. This is a condition, not a double payment.

You are once again begging the question and assuming that which is not taught in the Scriptures; i.e., that men are merely "drowning", not dead but rather in peril of dying. That's why I rejected and will continue to point out the fallacy of your view. Again, to use your illustration, men are drowned and lying on the bottom of the ocean; dead, lifeless with no desire for rescue nor even life itself. They are "living dead". By inspiration, Moses describes this truth when he wrote of the fall of Adam and the consequences of that fall; Genesis 2:17 (KJV) "But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Was the serpent right and God a liar; i.e., that should they eat of the fruit of the tree they would not die? Personally, I'm going to go with what God said and not the "Father of lies" (Jh 8:44). Adam died the very moment he ate of the fruit, yet he continued to live, physically. The perennial problem is that many will not accept the truth of the depth of the noetic effects of the Fall. They simply cannot bear the insult. Man is far worse than he would like to think he is. He is dead not sick, not even terminally ill, but dead. And until he is "quickened, made alive, born again", he is blind, deaf and dumb to his actual, helpless and hopeless condition.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Jonah taught no such thing. While the price of salvation was paid solely by God, we must receive it.

Funny, my Bible in Jonah 2:9 says, "Salvation is of the LORD." What does your's say? I grant you that "salvation is [color:red]paid solely by God". The ransom has been paid in full. There is nothing more that man need contribute, add, annex, etc. to secure it. The prerequisites of repentance and faith are included in the salvation that was paid for. They are given to those for whom the redemption was made. They are NOT an "extra" which man must bring to the table to facilitate nor complete salvation.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]But as I have said before and I will double emphasize here, it is not our choice that saves us, it is God's grace.

You are once again speaking out of both sides of your mouth. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/rolleyes.gif" alt="rolleyes" title="rolleyes[/img] "Faith" is the "work of God." (Jh 6:29)

John 10:26-28 (ASV) "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand. (cf. Ps 110:3)
In His Grace,


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Re: The correct answer is: #970
Mon Mar 31, 2003 2:46 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]3. God chose to save Saul because He foreknew that Saul would humble himself and repent in the light of the God's grace.

Without a doubt, you do subscribe to a "conditional grace", which is based upon what man DOES and not even upon some ill-conceived and/or arbitrary choice in God alone. According to your statement here, which is unquestionably consistent with your soteriological synergism, God's act of "choice" is pre-conditioned upon what Saul (anyone) does. The inescapable labyrinth which this view creates has already been discussed in part, e.g., in these past messages:

Foreknowledge "1"

Foreknowledge "2"

Foreknowledge "3"

Foreknowledge "4"

And most assuredly, your erroneous view of "foreknowledge" is in total contradiction of what the Scriptures teach in regard to God choosing those whom He has determined to save from all eternity, and before they had either done good or evil (cf. Eph 1:4-11; Rom 9:11ff; et al) Of course, if we were to grant you, for the sake of argument, that your redefining of "foreknowledge" and "predestination" were correct, you are still left with an insurmountable problem. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/evilgrin.gif" alt="evilgrin" title="evilgrin[/img] For if, as you are wanting to argue, that God "foreknew", i.e., somehow observed Saul humble himself and repent, thus moving God to choose him, then to what was Saul chosen? Was he chosen to a "possibility salvation" wherein there was no sure end? Was he chosen to an infallible salvation? If the former is true, then it cannot be said that God "foreknew" anything at all. For what is it that God could possibly know until Saul had lived his entire life and made all the myriad decisions he would during that life? If the latter is true, again using your "reasoning", i.e., God's choosing included a sure end, which was Saul's eternal salvation, then every thing and decision that Saul/Paul was to make throughout his life was immutable. In short, he couldn't have chosen anything but to humble himself, repent and persevere to the end. There could be no possibility of him falling away and being damned.

You see Josh, this type of convoluted thinking only serves to confuse things all the more and the end is far worse than from where you began. It simply is nonsense! It's been tried before, found wanting and failed miserably throughout the history of the Church. Of course, the majority opinion sides with you, that I will sadly admit. Those favoring your view are Rome, most Protestant denominations and every sect and cult that has every existed on earth. In each and every case, grace has been intermixed with works; call it "conditions" if you will, but it doesn't change the reality of what it really is: "God helps those who choose to be saved" = [color:red]SYNERGISM which is the mortal enemy of Grace.... free and sovereign Grace.



In that Grace,


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Re: **Parable Poem of the Boasting Fool** #971
Tue Apr 01, 2003 12:20 AM
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As a poet you should stick to Electronic Engineering. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/flee.gif" alt="flee" title="flee[/img]

Re: Grace, not regeneration #972
Tue Apr 01, 2003 12:38 PM
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Dear JoshT,<br><br><br>Nice to see you back. You still have not proven your case that faith precedes regeneration.<br><br><br>In Christ,<br>Carlos


"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
Re: Regeneration precedes faith [Re: carlos] #973
Tue Apr 01, 2003 6:56 PM
Tue Apr 01, 2003 6:56 PM

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Dear Carlos,

First of all, concerning the Pharisees. The scripture makes it plain that they rejected God of their own accord,

Luke 7:30 says,
"But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him. "

So it was not hard to derive that God foreknew their rejection and did not extend His grace to them, not because He simply hated them.

Secondly, you contend that one is "born again" so that they can be saved, and cite several references. But note what 1 John 3:9 says that one who has been born of God cannot sin. Now I agree that this is speaking of living in wilful sin, but hear me out: How can a person (regardless of how 'spiritually alive' they are) live a holy life before God if they are not yet saved?

The third thing you questioned me on was how can those that are spiritually dead obey God. So do I believe that one who has a 'heart of stone' and a carnal mind can respond to the Lord's call? Absolutely. It's quite simple really, the power of God's grace. John 1 says that Christ is the light of men, for His holy light can even enlighten the deadest men and let them see the truth.
John 5:25 says,

"Verily, verily, I say to unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, whn the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live."

So even though men are spiritually dead, they can still hear when Christ calls them. Should I think it so strange that one who can call the physically dead to life should also be able to do so with the spiritually dead? But as I pointed out with the Pharisees, God's call can be resisted by men. Yes, it is God who opens their hearts and ears, this I do not deny, but man can harden and close them again (see Hebrews 3:7).

"But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears that they should not hear. Yea, they made their hearts as adamant stone..." (Zechariah 7:11-12)

So yes, I do believe that repentance to life is a gift from God, and that salvation is not dependent on our will or effort, but God's mercy. This does not negate the fact that God chooses to save only those that answer His call, even though they be dead.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: The correct answer is: [Re: Pilgrim] #974
Tue Apr 01, 2003 7:16 PM
Tue Apr 01, 2003 7:16 PM

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Dear Pilgrim,

IRT:
"For if, as you are wanting to argue, that God "foreknew", i.e., somehow observed Saul humble himself and repent, thus moving God to choose him, then to what was Saul chosen? Was he chosen to a "possibility salvation" wherein there was no sure end? Was he chosen to an infallible salvation? If the former is true, then it cannot be said that God "foreknew" anything at all. For what is it that God could possibly know until Saul had lived his entire life and made all the myriad decisions he would during that life? If the latter is true, again using your "reasoning", i.e., God's choosing included a sure end, which was Saul's eternal salvation, then every thing and decision that Saul/Paul was to make throughout his life was immutable. In short, he couldn't have chosen anything but to humble himself, repent and persevere to the end. There could be no possibility of him falling away and being damned."

There is only one kind of salvation, conditional. I do not doubt that God knows every facet of my life from beginning to end, but just because He knows my end, whether I followed Him or not, does not mean that He predetermined it.

If my line of reasoning is what has failed, then why, as I pointed out elsewhere, does Romans 11 obviously support what I say? Rome and most Protestant denominations also believe in the Trinity (I assume you do as well), United Pentacostals use this as "evidence" against all other denominations. I frankly don't care who believes what, I simply believe what is written.

In Christ,
Josh

Re: The correct answer is: [Re: li0scc0] #975
Tue Apr 01, 2003 7:35 PM
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Dear Steve,

Exactly right. God elects His own according to His foreknowledge.

"Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ..." (1 Peter 1:2)

Some mistakenly believe that God elects without regard to anything in man's life whatsoever, and indeed salvation is not of man's will or works, but of God who shows mercy. This does not negate the fact that God requires that we receive and continue in His grace.

"And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation." (Acts 2:40)

and

"Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." (1 Timothy 4:16)

Of course this does not mean we save ourselves as in purchasing our salvation, that was done on the cross. This is simply saying that the only way to be saved is to continue in Christ, who is our salvation. Good examples of this are in John 15:1-8 and Romans 11:18-22.


In Christ,
Josh

Re: The correct answer is: #976
Tue Apr 01, 2003 9:09 PM
Tue Apr 01, 2003 9:09 PM
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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Exactly right. God elects His own according to His foreknowledge.

"Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ..." (1 Peter 1:2)

Josh,

You continue to use terms, e.g., "foreknowledge" in an unbiblical fashion. I have challenged you on several occasions to give evidence that "foreknowledge", according to your use of the term, means "prescience", i.e., "knowledge of raw facts beforehand" and that only. Clearly, this mitigates against the very definition of Deity. There are several fundamental questions which need answering on your part if you are going to espouse this erroneous view, which seems to be the undergirding of your position. Some of these questions are:
    [*]Where is the origin of these "raw facts" which God foresaw and upon which He determined (if you are even able to affirm that God does or can infallibly determine anything? If they occurred outside of Himself, how does this square with His Omnipresence?[*]If there are "raw facts" which God must perceive which He has not preordained, then how does this square with His attribute of Omniscience? For your definition would imply that there are some "raw facts" which were unknown unto God at some point.[*]If after perceiving what men will do (again where are these men that He sees?) He then determines what will be (a self-contradictory statement), how does this square with His Omnipotence? For God would then be the Sovereign Who determines all things, but only one who simply iterates what has already happened due to the "free-will" decisions of men.[*]And again I ask, if God foresees that a man has already made a particular choice concerning something and consequently, on the basis of what God has foreseen, does this not destroy your doctrine of free-will? For when this act takes place temporally, is not this same man theoretically able to not choose that which was foreseen, if one believes as you do, that man is not forced in making decisions? Could he not just as freely choose that which was contrary to what foresaw?[*]How does the biblical reality of prophesy exist and square with your view of "foreknowledge" and "free-will"? How is it possible in your indeterministic theology that anything is certainly fixed, immutable and will infallibly take place in all its details?[/LIST]
In His Sovereign Grace,


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Re: The correct answer is: #977
Tue Apr 01, 2003 10:03 PM
Tue Apr 01, 2003 10:03 PM
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Pilgrim Offline

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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]If my line of reasoning is what has failed, then why, as I pointed out elsewhere, does Romans 11 obviously support what I say?

You never have made a case from Romans 11 to justify your view. A right consideration of CONTEXT is essential if one is to rightly understand the Scriptures. Let's look at a few passages from Romans 11:

Romans 11:1-6 (ASV) "I say then, Did God cast off his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God did not cast off his people which he foreknew. Or know ye not what the scripture saith of Elijah? how he pleadeth with God against Israel: Lord, they have killed thy prophets, they have digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have left for myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to Baal. Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. [color:red]But if it is by grace, it is no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace.
Paul first makes the point that although the vast majority of God's covenant people, the Jews have been cut off and stand as enemies against God, the LORD has kept a "remnant" for Himself who He foreknew i.e., (those whom He had foreloved and determined to save by the election of grace). That which made the believing Jew differ from the unbelieving Jew was God's electing grace and NOT anything concerning them individually. For to the one, grace was given which upheld them while the remainder were not given grace, according to God's election. This election, Paul had already established was UNconditional. (cf. Rom 9:11ff).
Romans 11:19-21 (ASV) Thou wilt say then, Branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in. Well; by their [color:red]unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by thy faith. Be not highminded, but fear: for if God spared not the natural branches, neither will he spare thee.
Here, Paul addresses the Gentiles at Rome and admonishes them to not be haughty nor presumptuous about their alleged standing before God. There were those within the covenant community of Israel who presumed to be right with God due to their national heritage and tradition. They thought that because they were Jews, God was their portion while all others were under God's wrath and judgment. But surely the biblical record shows that the vast majority of Jews fell under God's righteous anger and were rejected for their sins and unbelief. Neither nationality, nor ecclesiastical affiliation has any influence upon one's salvation as Paul states elsewhere:
Romans 9:6-8 (ASV) "But [it is] not as though the word of God hath come to nought. For they are not all Israel, that are of Israel: neither, because they are Abraham's seed, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God; but the children of the promise are reckoned for a seed."
In Romans 11, Paul is simply iterating what he had already established before and further establishes that it is God's sovereign right and mercy which saves and nothing else. But I would have you notice that Paul says that the Jews were broken off due to their unbelief; i.e., they never believed but were self-deceived with their Jewishness in thinking that all was right with their soul. He is making the point that the Gentiles were standing by their faith which is of grace, a gift of God and therefore there is no room for boasting over those Jews who had been cut off. Pride always precedes the fall, and such pride is inconsistent with grace. Thus, the admonition is to beware of your prideful attitude for it could indicate that you are in the same precarious position as those who were cut off; without true faith and thus under God's condemnation and possible rejection.

There is nothing in Romans 11 that teaches that a true believer can be cut off for not persevering in the faith. But to the contrary, the text shows that there is a remnant who has been saved infallibly by grace and who has persevered in that faith while others who were guilty of presuming their salvation were ultimately lost. No one is denying the "conditionality" of salvation, i.e., that man is responsible to believe. God doesn't believe for anyone. Faith is given by grace (Eph 2:8 , 9). And true faith always seeks that which it is designed for; Christ. BOTH man's responsibility and God's sovereignty are upheld in the doctrines of grace.


In His Sovereign Grace,


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Re: Regeneration precedes faith #978
Thu Apr 03, 2003 1:05 PM
Thu Apr 03, 2003 1:05 PM
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Dear Brother JoshT,

In our discussion of John 8, I had challenged you to demonstrate me from the Text where it stated that God specifically withheld his grace form the Pharisees because he “he knew in advance that that they would reject him”.

You responded with:
In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
First of all, concerning the Pharisees. The scripture makes it plain that they rejected God of their own accord,
Luke 7:30 says,
"But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him. "
So it was not hard to derive that God foreknew their rejection and did not extend His grace to them, not because He simply hated them.



Brother JoshT, That’s not an answer to my question. Please prove me from the text again where it says that God withheld his grace from them because He knew in advance that they would reject him[I have not used the word ‘foreknew’ for you are not using it biblically, as been demonstrated repeatedly by Pilgrim]. Not only that, but I did not deny that The Pharisees did indeed reject god as their choice. In fact, I said that all men in the natural state reject God (i.e. 1 cor 2:14,Roms 8:6-7,Eph 2:1-3, Romans 1:18-3:20,and many other passages that have been quoted to you). My argument is that if God looked down the corridor of time[using your position] He would see all men rejecting him. Quoting Luke 7:30 does not answer my question. What you said is Eisogesis. Prove otherwise. How did you get from John 8 and Luke 7:30 that “God foreknew their rejection and did not extend His grace to them”? I have yet to see you do any kind of EXEGESIS. With that kind of eisogesis I can basically prove just about anything from the scriptures. The fact of the matter is ROMANS 9 says that God Calls because of His own Pleasure not with regard to ANYTHING Jacob and Esau did.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Secondly, you contend that one is "born again" so that they can be saved, and cite several references. But note what 1 John 3:9 says that one who has been born of God cannot sin. Now I agree that this is speaking of living in wilful sin, but hear me out: How can a person (regardless of how 'spiritually alive' they are) live a holy life before God if they are not yet saved?



You misunderstand me. I’m sorry if I was not clear. But I said that those are born gain, or literally “from Above” sovereignly by the Holy Spirit ( i.e. John 3), will necessarily believe and thus be saved. I said that they are not separated, but two distinct things. I treat Regeneration(Mongergistic work of God alone) and Conversion(repentance, belief by the regenerate) as two distinct things, but the former effectually and without fail leads to the latter. As proven by Romans 8:30:” these whom He called, He also justified”. Regeneration gives the Dead elect sinner Spiritual Life and will effectually cause him/her to come to Christ( i.e. John 6:37,44,65,etc). They will excercise faith in Christ,and thus be justified and also bear other fruits. Please let me know if I misunderstood your question. In addition, I see no response to my ‘cited references.’

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
The third thing you questioned me on was how can those that are spiritually dead obey God. So do I believe that one who has a 'heart of stone' and a carnal mind can respond to the Lord's call? Absolutely. It's quite simple really, the power of God's grace. John 1 says that Christ is the light of men, for His holy light can even enlighten the deadest men and let them see the truth.
John 5:25 says,
"Verily, verily, I say to unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live."


first, what do you mean by “the deadest men”? Yes, it is the Power of God, but the POWER of GOD ALONE. To be “DEAD” means to be UNRESPONSIVE to spiritual Things until, as you said, they “hear when Christ Calls them”. Brother Josht T, this is what I have been saying : That Christ Effectually Calls the Elect. The Elect do in fact hear when called. His Sheep Respond to his voice(i.e. John 10). Those who are not his sheep do not. John 5:25 does not help you, It only strengthens our case . Jesus is talking about 2 RESURRECTIONS in this context. The one at the End of the AGE and the one that happens to Elect men/women Now. It demonstrates an EFFECTUAL call. Note that They ”SHALL hear”.. and those that Hear WILL come to life. It’s certain to happen.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
So even though men are spiritually dead, they can still hear when Christ calls them. Should I think it so strange that one who can call the physically dead to life should also be able to do so with the spiritually dead?



However, it is the Elect that will hear (which was my original statement in this thread). God does indeed RAISE the spiritual dead to Life (i.e. Eph 2:1-10) through the EFFECTUALL Calling that is spoken in this text[john 5] . Those whom He called according to his purpose...Whom He foreknew(elected, foreloved).. He predestined...These He called...these He justified...These He glorified...(Romans 8:22-30 etc.). Though you say the statements above, you in fact deny it with your other statements. The dead Hear as result of the internall calling of God as in john 5:25, Acts 16:14-15.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
But as I pointed out with the Pharisees, God's call can be resisted by men. Yes, it is God who opens their hearts and ears, this I do not deny, but man can harden and close them again (see Hebrews 3:7).
"But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears that they should not hear. Yea, they made their hearts as adamant stone..." (Zechariah 7:11-12)



I sound like a broken record, but God’s effectual call never fails(“All that the Father Gives me, WILL Come to me John 6:37.).I figure if say enough times it will eventually sink into your mind. I am not denying that people resist God’s grace(see the parable of the soil). The Gospel Call goes out to many. However only the elect respond. I am saying that All those HE CALLED[effectually]...THESE HE JUSTIFED[Romans 8:30]...You have yet to refute this passage smile. Note Hebrews 3 is not the same as in John 5:25. The Language here says “IF YOU WILL hear His voice “. This does not give you the latitude to come with conclusion that men can harden their after hearts after being effectually called . There is no effectual calling in this context. Please prove it you think it does. And what are you trying to prove with Zecha 7:11-12 especially in light of it’s context?? I think you fail to disntiguish between the gospel call,which is external, and the effectual call, the internal work of God on the elect.

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]
So yes, I do believe that repentance to life is a gift from God, and that salvation is not dependent on our will or effort, but God's mercy. This does not negate the fact that God chooses to save only those that answer His call, even though they be dead.



This seems like doubletalk to me. Thus, I go back to my original question, Who are those will Hear His CALL? That is what you are missing : the EFFECTUAL call is what ‘Quickens’, ’Resurrects’, ‘Makes Alive’, ‘opens the heart’ of the Elect sinner and thus draw him/her to Believe in Christ (John 6:37-45). The sinner “CANNOT” produce any fruit, which includes faith, unless his nature is changed; His old nature needs more than just an aid; thus my argument that regeneration/calling precedes faith(i.e. Romans 8:30). This happens to the ELECT only.

The difference comes down to this. You believe, as do Roman Catholics, the unbiblical notion of Synergism and I believe in the biblical teaching of Monergism.


In Christ,
Carlos



"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
Re: Regeneration precedes faith #979
Fri Apr 04, 2003 8:04 AM
Fri Apr 04, 2003 8:04 AM

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Dear Josh,
It is clear that the men on this board are doing an excellent job of showing, or at least trying, to show you the truth of the scriptures concerning the doctrine of salvation. I realize from your posts that you have no understanding nor believe in the doctrine of total depravity, unconditional election, limited atonement, irresistable grace, nor perseverance of the saints.

You must believe that man is not totally depraved nor would you even consider that he could, of his own Free Will choose a Holy God. It seems you have rejected the doctrine of unconditional election since you perceive that God elected some on the basis of THEIR faith; surely you must think their are some in hell for which Christ shed His precious blood simply by rejecting His grace. And this leads to even more error believing that man can Resist a Sovereign God and His grace!!! My, it is no wonder that you believe also that man can lose his salvation! No wonder!

What exactly do you base you salvation on? You faith? Have you not read that this too is a gift? How can a dead man do anything, unless he be "born again", made alive unto Christ.

What you may not realize is this doctrine of yours is a very dangerous thing. You give to man that glory that only God deserves. Do you not know that Adam, and thus all posterity, DIED, they just didn't get sick!

I will pray for you Joshua. I don't mean that condescendingly, but sorrowfully. You seem to fight so strongly for those doctrines that in no way glorify the KING.

Go back and sincerely seek the favor of Christ and His wisdom. Ask that He teach you the gospel that was once delivered to the saints. As I said before, the doctrine of election led men to try and throw Christ over the cliff. And many left Him and walked no more with Him..........don't be one of them.

In His Grace,
Linda

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