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jta Offline OP
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In view of limited/particular atonement . . knowing that Christ died to fully save His elect, rather than, as some assert, to make salvation possible for all:

If I ask God to save me, am I not in effect asking for Christ to suffer the penalty for my many horrific sins, which, otherwise, I would suffer myself?

How do I do that if I love Him?

Would love not ask instead that He be spared this burden, if possible?

I don't have an issue praying for the salvation of others, but, somehow, it seems really wrong to pray for my own, even though, on frequent occasion, I do. The most I can do, without offending my own pathetic excuse for a conscience, is to ask that His will be done in and through me, whatever that might be, and whether that might include my salvation, or not.

I can't bear the thought that Christ might have suffered for even the least of my sins, much less the totality of them.

Is my logic wrong, and if so, how?

If some part of me, however insufficient, aspires to know, love, serve, honor, and glorify God, how do I do that, lacking His indwelling Holy Spirit and the new nature that all real Christians have per 2 Cor. 5:17?


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Originally Posted by jta
In view of limited/particular atonement . . knowing that Christ died to fully save His elect, rather than, as some assert, to make salvation possible for all:

If I ask God to save me, am I not in effect asking for Christ to suffer the penalty for my many horrific sins, which, otherwise, I would suffer myself?

How do I do that if I love Him?

Would love not ask instead that He be spared this burden, if possible?
Asking God to save you is hardly asking for Christ to suffer for your sins!! nope Why? Because it was God's eternal good pleasure that the Son should most willingly descend from glory, take upon Himself the body of man, become one of us and suffer the horrors of God's infinite wrath against sin in order to glorify His justice, grace, mercy and love for them whom He predestinated to eternal life in Him. The decision for the Lord Christ to suffer vicariously and substitutionally was from eternity. Calling upon God for salvation has no effect in the actual atoning for sin for "it is finished". Calling upon God in truth is the fruit of regeneration which is given by God as the means of salvation. That "calling upon God" is the evidence of love for God springing forth from the new nature which is inclined toward God.

It is God's prescriptive will, command, that ALL repent and believe upon Christ for the remission of their sins and that they be reconciled to God. And, that command is also a loving call to seek Him and ask that your guilt be removed in Him who gave of Himself for your redemption. To refuse to do so is to only add to your sin. To refuse to believe that Christ's perfect righteousness is not imputed to one who calls upon God is a heinous sin for it makes God a liar. To refuse to believe that Christ's death cannot save you is yet to increase your sin for it makes God impotent to accomplish His desire to save. Salvation is not a 'possibility' but a 'reality' to all who truly call upon God with a broken heart, for even that is a gift of God. Assurance of that surety is part and parcel of God's great salvation which the Spirit works in the hearts of God's children. Yet, with very rare exceptions, assurance is given gradually over time as one matures in the face and sees the magnificent work has done in you. That work is two-fold: 1) a deeper realization of the depth of corruption and sinfulness that remains in one's heart. 2) the experience of seeing the grace of God through the Spirit working in you which makes your love of God increase day by day. Full Assurance as the Puritan's are known to write about is a rare thing. But true assurance is inseparable from one's faith for the Father never leaves His children as orphans but is always near to uphold them and lead them in their walk of faith.

The Spirit has supplied enough evidence in the inspired Word of God to validate these things which you surely know, right? grin

Deuteronomy 4:7 (KJV) 7 For what nation [is there so] great, who [hath] God [so] nigh unto them, as the LORD our God [is] in all [things that] we call upon him [for]?

1 Chronicles 16:8 (KJV) 8 Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.

Psalms 4:1 (KJV) 1 <<To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David.>> Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me [when I was] in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.

Psalms 18:3 (KJV) 3 I will call upon the LORD, [who is worthy] to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.

Psalms 50:15 (KJV) 15 And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.

Psalms 55:16 (KJV) 16 As for me, I will call upon God; and the LORD shall save me.

Psalms 86:5 (KJV) 5 For thou, Lord, [art] good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.

Psalms 86:7 (KJV) 7 In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.

Psalms 99:6 (KJV) 6 Moses and Aaron among his priests, and Samuel among them that call upon his name; they called upon the LORD, and he answered them.

Psalms 105:1 (KJV) 1 O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people.

Psalms 116:2 (KJV) 2 Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon [him] as long as I live.

Psalms 116:13 (KJV) 13 I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD.

Psalms 116:17 (KJV) 17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.

Psalms 145:18 (KJV) 18 The LORD [is] nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.

Isaiah 55:6 (KJV) 6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:

Romans 10:12,13 (KJV) 12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. 13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.


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jta Offline OP
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Thank you for your thoughtful reply.

I understand that all are commanded to repent and to believe, and, insofar as I am capable, I have sought to do both.

But I still can't get past the fact that if I am one day saved, then that means Jesus died for my sins, and if not, then He didn't.

I wish it were possible to more fully (e.g., at all) love and serve and obey and please and walk with God, without inflicting on Him such a terrible price. If I could somehow live as though I were a genuine child of God, but then still go to my punishment when I die, I would consider that far better, than continuing to live my present life which is sinful in every way possible, yet to be saved from His righteous wrath. His Glory is what matters above all else, not my eternal condition, except insofar as He is thereby glorified. What matters to me about salvation at this moment is not that I would escape His wrath due to sin, but, rather, that sin would be put to death in me, and that henceforth He would somehow be glorified in and through me.

I guess it is just very difficult for me to fathom God's Love, Mercy, and Grace, especially as they would pertain to someone like me.


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1. I am forced to conclude that you probably have an unbiblical understanding concerning the state of a regenerate man. It appears that you hold that true Christians are some kind of saint in regard to the soul, i.e., you are internalizing and perhaps even externalizing one's life which borders on the brink of a sort of legalism. The Apostle Paul in his autobiographical summary of his life reveals the stark contrast between his unregenerate state where he was self-justified and exalted his standing as a Pharisee, his vast knowledge of Judaism, and his perceived holy life. This he then contrasts with his life after his regeneration, which was antithetical to his former life in every way. However, he also adds his revelation of his soul and the war then existing between the remnant of his 'old man' and that of the 'new man'. He laments that what he knows he should not do and hates is what he too often does. And that which he loves, e.g., the law of God, and yearns to be conformed to it, he too often fails to do. Thus he cries out, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?". But do take careful notice what he then proclaims. It is NOT a cry of desperation and serious doubt concerning his salvation. He writes: "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin." However, that last statement (Romans 7:25) is the end of chapter 7 but it is also the introduction for chapter 8. In that chapter he does not dwell in morbid introspection of the miserable remnant of sin which remains in him but rather he looks beyond himself and focuses 100% on the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ of who's perfect righteousness has been imputed to him and therefore he stands perfectly and completely justified and reconciled to God who loves him with an everlasting love.

2. My simple advice to you, my brother, is the following which has been in the hearts and minds of all the saints and will always be their confession as long as the Lord keeps them on this earth: "And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." (Mark 9:24) Soooo, get on with your life and exchange your reticent groaning for giving thanks for the great salvation which God has bestowed upon you in the Lord Christ. Raise up your voice in praise and thanksgiving for His incomprehensible gift and press on rejoicing in the power of the Spirit which He has graciously given to you as a witness of His grace and mercy to poor needy sinners like you and me.

3. Let David's song be your song from this day forward:

Quote
Psalms 40:1-17 (KJV) 1 <<To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.>> I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. 2 He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, [and] established my goings. 3 And he hath put a new song in my mouth, [even] praise unto our God: many shall see [it], and fear, and shall trust in the LORD. 4 Blessed [is] that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. 5 Many, O LORD my God, [are] thy wonderful works [which] thou hast done, and thy thoughts [which are] to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: [if] I would declare and speak [of them], they are more than can be numbered. 6 Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. 7 Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book [it is] written of me, 8 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law [is] within my heart. 9 I have preached righteousness in the great congregation: lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest. 10 I have not hid thy righteousness within my heart; I have declared thy faithfulness and thy salvation: I have not concealed thy lovingkindness and thy truth from the great congregation. 11 Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O LORD: let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me. 12 For innumerable evils have compassed me about: mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me. 13 Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me: O LORD, make haste to help me. 14 Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil. 15 Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame that say unto me, Aha, aha. 16 Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified. 17 But I [am] poor and needy; [yet] the Lord thinketh upon me: thou [art] my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God.
May GOD be glorified through you.


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jta Offline OP
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Again, thank you.

I do ask God to help my unbelief. I am sure that unbelief lies near the root of much of my sin, as well as being, of course, a heinous sin in itself.

I certainly do not think Christians are perfect or sinless. But they do seem to possess evidences of the indwelling Holy Spirit, most of which I lack, and the general tenor of their lives, especially if observed over time, seems to be an increase in faith, knowledge, love toward God and others, hatred of sin, victory over sin, love for Scripture, and obedience toward God. I long to see some of those things in myself, to see God glorified in and through me.

I love Psalm 40 and will pray through it. Thank you for reminding me of it; it so happens that I am listening through the Psalms in the car on the way to and from work, and will likely get to Psalm 40 in a few days Lord willing. Also 51 (few days later) and 139 (in a couple weeks). While the Psalms in general have become more and more precious to me, these are some that truly express the desire of my heart. That God would grant me true repentance and revival, and grant me a heart more pleasing to Him.


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