Dear George,

Ok. I must say that your post was quite interesting. We are going start this over because you did not answer my 2nd question, and I will then reply to one of your false theories in answering my first question. And please see the quotes from Bunyan on election, effectual calling, and the rest of the biblical doctrines of grace. I have supplied more than sufficient quotes.

Originally, you posted:
The fact is, Scripture proves Calvin was only partially right in his doctrine on salvation. This can easily be determined upon close reading of Ephesians 1:4-13 and paying attention to the pronouns used by Paul to describe who he was talking about and who he was talking to. (emphasis by Carlos)

To which I replied,
I would just love to hear what is your view is concerning this issue. Thus, please, "EXEGETE" the passage for us, since it appears that we, Charles Hodge, Peter O'Brien, John Calvin, William Hendriksen, and the vast number of other trained exegetes have been wrong, as it appears in your view. So how does Eph 1 prove us wrong? Please show us how the "pronouns" can easily prove Calvin and others wrong?

1)You did not exegete the Eph 1 passage in this latest post since you claimed above that “close reading of Eph 1:4-13” prove us wrong. As I said, how is this so? When we do close reading, we surely end up on a different plane than you. And How does the “pronouns” prove us wrong?

2) You tried to answer my challenge of appealing to excellent exegesis of Christians such as Hodge, O’Brien, Hendriksen, and many others by saying the following statements:
To His glory, God hides things. Jesus spoke in parables to the multitudes, but later revealed the meanings of the parables to His disciples. Many of His parables are left unexplained in Scripture.
Sorry, but that has nothing to do with the Eph 1 passage. THAT IS NO PARABLE SIR!!!!!! Not only that but you are assuming here that All the men above are either unbelievers or some form of "immature believers":), as if even immature believers cannot grasp these Eph 1 verses which are not even that hard. Furthermore, you still have not done any kind of exegesis to demonstrate the proper interpretation of the passage, and attempt to prove them as you assume them to be. And yes, from what I have seen all these men are/were “humble” and display[ed] the characteristics of a Christian.
In any case, any one who is really “indwelt with the holy spirit” and has any kind of reasoning would know that these men have exegeted the passage correctly. Not only that, but easily recognize that that they are/were "teachers" given to the church (Eph. 4:11). You on the other hand seem to be a master of taking things out of its context[ like the Acts passage] and applying it to a totally different context.

To be honest the rest of your post was just pure speculation [and in fact backfired with the example of Bunyan, see below]. I think Pilgrims’ post is suffice for the rest of your surmises. If you want to sit around and claim that you are the “mature” Christian and one who is in the light, then please EXEGETE THE EPHESIANS 1 passage, and instead of boasting some special knowledge. You sound very much like one of those that the Apostle John warned us about in his epistles[ e.g. 1 john].

Indeed it is quite ironic that you would use John Bunyan as an example for your false theories. In fact, John Bunyan would agree with us that the doctrines of Grace are the biblical truth. Thus, now why don’t you be consistent with your theory and listen to Bunyan, who you admit by your post, knew the bible. You need not tell me about Bunyan; I’m currently reading his “Pilgrim’s Progress”, and “The Christian family”. And sir, his doctrines are the furthest thing from yours. I pray that God may open your eyes to see. May the Lord have mercy upon you.

Here are some excerpts from two of Bunyan's works proving he held to the doctrines of grace [one of them actually has comments related to the Eph. 1 passage].

1."Reprobation asserted ( you know what reprobation is right?)
2. Another scripture you have in the eleventh chapter of this epistle [Romans 11], from these words, 'The election hath obtained it, and the REST were blinded' (Rom 11:7). These words are shedding[1] words, they sever between men and men; the election, the rest; the chosen, the left; the embraced, the refused: 'The election have obtained it, and the rest were blinded.' By rest here, must needs be understood those not elect, because set one in opposition to the other; and if not elect, what then but reprobate?
3. A third scripture is that in the Acts of the Apostles, 'And as many as were ordained to eternal life, believed' (13:48). 'And as many'; by these words, as by the former, you may see how the Holy Ghost distinguisheth or divideth between men and men; the sons, and the sons of Adam. 'As many as were ordained to eternal life, believed': If by many here, we are to understand every individual, then not only the whole world must at least believe the gospel, of which we see the most fall short, but they must be ordained to eternal life; which other scriptures contradict: for there is the rest, besides the elect; the stubble and chaff, as well as wheat: many therefore must here include but some; 'For though - Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved' (Rom 9:27; Isa 1:9, 10:22,23).
I might here multiply many other texts, but in the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established. Let these therefore for this, suffice to prove that there is a reprobation. For this I say, though the children of the flesh, the rest besides the election, and the like, were not mentioned in the word; yet seeing there is such a thing as the children of the promise, the seed, the children of God, and the like, and that too under several other phrases, as predestinated, foreknown, chosen in Christ, and written in the Book of life, and appointed unto life, with many others: I say seeing these things are thus apparent, it is without doubt, that there is such a thing as a reprobation also (Rom 8; Eph 1:3,4; 1 Thess 5:9).
Nay, further, From the very word election, it followeth unavoidably; for whether you take it as relating to this, of distinguishing between persons as touching the world to come, or with reference to God's acts of choosing this or that man to this or that office, work, or employment in this world, it still signifieth such a choosing, as that but some are therein concerned, and that therefore some are thence excluded. Are all the elect, the seed, the saved, the vessels of mercy, the chosen and peculiar? Are not some, yea the most, the children of the flesh, the rest, the lost, the vessels of wrath, of dishonour, and the children of perdition? (Rom 11:9; 1 Peter 2:8,9; Matt 10:16; 2 Sam 6:21; Psa 78:67,68; John 15:16; 2 Cor 4:3; Rom 9:21,22; John 17:12)...For man by nature, (consider him at best), can see no more, nor do no more than what the principles of nature understands and helps to do; which nature being below the discerning of things truly, spiritually, and savingly good, it must needs fall short of receiving, loving and delighting in them. 'The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned' (1 Cor 2:14). Now I say, if the natural man at best (for the elect before conversion are no more, if quite so much) cannot do this, how shall they attain thereto, being now not only corrupted and infected, but depraved, bewitched and dead; swallowed up of unbelief, ignorance, confusion, hardness of heart, hatred of God, and the like? When a thorn by nature beareth grapes, and a thistle beareth figs, then may this thing be (Matt 7:16-18). To lay hold of and receive the gospel by a true and saving faith, it is an act of the soul as made a new creature[e.g.Irrestiable grace], which is the workmanship of God: 'Now he that hath wrought us for the self-same thing is God' (2 Cor 5:5). 'For a corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit' (Luke 6:43-45). 'Can the Ethiopian change his skin?' (Jer 13:23). ( words in brackets by Carlos)
Click here: Reprobation Asserted

2. "Saved by Grace" ( see especially the words in red)
In the first chapter, from the fourth to the twelfth verse, the apostle is treating of the doctrine of election, both with respect to the act itself, the end, and means conducing thereto. The act, he tells us, was God's free choice of some (verse 4,5,11). The end was God's glory in their salvation (verse 6,14). The means conducing to that end was Jesus Christ himself-"In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace" (verse 7). This done, he treateth of the subjection of the Ephesians to the faith, as it was held forth to them in the Word of the truth of the gospel, as also of their being sealed by the Holy Spirit of God unto the day of redemption (verse 12-14). Moreover, he telleth them how he gave thanks to God for them, making mention of them in his prayers, even that he would make them see "what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead," &c. (verse 15-20).

And lest the Ephesians, at the hearing of these their so many privileges, should forget how little they deserved them, he tells them that in time past they were dead in trespasses and sins, and that then they walked in them "according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience" (Eph 2:2,3).

Having thus called them back to the remembrance of themselves-to wit, what they were in their state of unregeneracy, he proceedeth to show them that their first quickening was by the resurrection of Christ their Head, in whom they before were chosen, and that by him they were already set down in heavenly places, (verse 5,6); inserting, by the way, the true cause of all this blessedness, with what else should be by us enjoyed in another world; and that is, the love and grace of God: "But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ [by grace ye are saved]." These last words seen to be the apostle's conclusion rightly drawn from the premises; as who should say, If you Ephesians were indeed dead in trespasses and sins; if indeed you were by nature the children of wrath, even as others, then you deserve no more than others. 2

Again, if God hath chosen you, if God hath justified and saved you by his Christ, and left others as good as you by nature to perish in their sins, then the true cause of this your blessed condition is, the free grace of God. But just thus it is, therefore by grace ye are saved; therefore all the good which you enjoy more than others, it is of mere goodwill.
First, then, we may be said to be saved in the purpose of God before the world began. The apostle saith that "he saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began" (2 Tim 1:9). This is the beginning of salvation, and according to this beginning all things concur and fall out in conclusion-"He hath saved us according to his eternal purpose, which he purposed in Christ Jesus." God in thus saving may be said to save us by determining to make those means effectual for the blessed completing of our salvation; and hence we are said "to be chosen in Christ to salvation." And again, that he hath in that choice given us that grace that shall complete our salvation. Yea, the text is very full, "He hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ, according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world" (Eph 1:3,4).

[color:"red"]Second. As we may be said to be saved in the purpose of God before the foundation of the world, so we may be said to be saved before we are converted, or called to Christ. And hence "saved" is put before "called"; "he hath saved us, and called us"; he saith not, he hath called us, and saved us; but he puts saving before calling (2 Tim 1:9). So again, we are said to be "preserved in Christ and called"; he saith not, called and preserved (Jude 1). And therefore God saith again, "I will pardon them whom I reserve"-that is, as Paul expounds it, those whom I have "elected and kept," and this part of salvation is accomplished through the forbearance of God (Jer 50:20; Rom 11:4,5). God beareth with is own elect, for Christ's sake, all the time of their unregeneracy, until the time comes which he hath appointed for their conversion. The sins that we stood guilty of before conversion, had the judgment due to them been executed upon us, we had not now been in the world to partake of a heavenly calling. But the judgment due to them hath been by the patience of God prevented, and we saved all the time of our ungodly and unconverted state, from that death, and those many hells, that for our sins we deserved at the hands of God [/color]

And here lies the reason that long life is granted to the elect before conversion, and that all the sins they commit and all the judgments they deserve, cannot drive them out of the world before conversion. Manasseh, you know, was a great sinner, and for the trespass which he committed he was driven from his own land, and carried to Babylon; but kill him they could not, though his sins had deserved death ten thousand times. But what was the reason? Why, he was not yet called; God had chosen him in Christ, and laid up in him a stock of grace, which must be given to Manasseh before he dies; therefore Manasseh must be convinced, converted, and saved. That legion of devils that was in the possessed, with all the sins which he had committed in the time of his unregeneracy, could not take away his life before his conversion (Mark 5). How many times was that poor creature, as we may easily conjecture, assaulted for his life by the devils that were in him, yet could they not kill him, yea, though his dwelling was near the sea-side, and the devils had power to drive him too, yet could they not drive him further than the mountains that were by the sea- side; yea, they could help him often to break his chains and fetters, and could also make him as mad as a bedlam, 3 they could also prevail with him to separate from men, and cut himself with stones, but kill him they could not, drown him they could not; he was saved to be called; he was, notwithstanding all this, preserved in Christ, and called. As it is said of the young lad in the gospel, he was by the devil cast oft into the fire, and oft into the water, to destroy him, but it could not be; even so hath he served others, but they must be "saved to be called" (Mark 9:22). How many deaths have some been delivered from and saved out of before conversion! Some have fallen into rivers, some into wells, some into the sea, some into the hands of men; yea, they have been justly arraigned and condemned, as the thief upon the cross, but must not die before they have been converted. They were preserved in Christ, and called.

Saved By Grace

Second, This is the intercession of Christ, or that for which he doth make intercession.
1. He prays for all the elect, that they may be brought home to God, and so into the unity of the faith, &c. this is clear, for that he saith, 'Neither pray I for these alone'; that is, for those only that are converted; 'but for them also which shall believe on me through their word'; for all them that shall, that are appointed to believe; or, as you have it a little above, 'for them which thou hast given me.' (John 17:9,20, Isa 53:12) And the reason is, for that he hath paid a ransom for them. Christ, therefore, when he maketh intercession for the ungodly, and all the unconverted elect are such, doth but petitionarily ask for his own, his purchased ones, those for whom he died before, that they might be saved by his blood.
2. When any of them are brought home to God, he yet prays for them; namely, that the sins which through infirmity they, after conversion, may commit, may also be forgiven them.
This is showed us by the intercession of the high priest under the law, that was to bear away the iniquities of the holy things of the children of Israel; yea, and also by his atonement for them that sinned; for that it saith, 'And the priest shall make an atonement for him, for his sin which he hath sinned, and it shall be forgiven him.' (Lev 5:10) This also is intimated even where our Lord doth make intercession, saying, 'I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.' (John 17:15) That Christ prayed that the converted should be kept from all manner of commission of sin, must not be supposed, for that is the way to make his intercession, at least in some things, invalid, and to contradict himself; for, saith he, 'I know that thou hearest me always.' (John 11:42) But the meaning is, I pray that thou wouldest keep them from soul-damning delusions, such as are unavoidably such; also that thou wouldest keep them from the soul-destroying evil of every sin, of ever temptation. Now this he doth by his prevailing and by his pardoning grace. Intercession of Christ FOR HIS ELECT

All of this is quite consistent to what I maintain!!! Unlike Dave Hunt, I can pull many more quotes demonstrating the unequivocal fact Bunyan HELD FIRMLY TO THE DOCTRINES OF GRACE!!!!

In Christ,