Can The Lost Do What is Right?

Have you ever been mistreated or just ignored at a church event only to feel loved and accepted at a work party full of unbelievers? Ever browse your favorite news website and read about yet another church’s misuse of funds followed by a story covering a secular organization donating millions to a good charitable cause?

Why do these types of circumstances stand out so dramatically to us? It is because we expect things to be quite the opposite. We expect Christians to actually be better people, don’t we?

In addition, we often have the assumption that non-Christians cannot do good things. However, this contradicts our experience! Many non-Christians are immoral, yes, but many are also relatively good, morally grounded people who have their own problems just like us all. We have people behaving both morally and immorally in the church as well.

So, what does being salvifically lost have to do with being able to make moral choices? Are lost people able to make the right moral choice? Yes, of course, they are.

So, then why does Paul say in Romans 3 that “no one is righteous, no not one?” How can it be that lost people are able to make the right choice much of the time if indeed they are not righteous?

Paul’s point is simple. Though the lost can do good things, it will not count as righteousness. If a man makes a billion right decisions it will not make him righteous. Even our good deeds are as filthy rags. This is the reason one must trust in the righteousness of another, namely Christ Jesus, the only righteous One!

Some argue that since the lost cannot do what is right, therefore they cannot confess their unrighteousness and put their trust in the righteousness of Christ because that, itself, is the right thing to do.

Remember, however, the Bible never says the lost cannot do the right thing! It only says that they cannot merit righteousness by doing the right things (righteousness cannot be attained by the law). The lost can do what is right, it is just never sufficient to earn their righteousness. And admitting that fact in faith isn’t in and of itself sufficient to make one righteous either!

In other words, the lost cannot earn their own righteousness and if they confess that fact by trusting in the righteousness of Christ they still are NOT doing enough to merit their own righteousness. This is why the lost need His righteousness applied to them by grace!

In Romans 3 Paul teaches that no one is righteous yet in chapter 4 he declares that Abraham was righteous. Which is it?

Paul is saying that no one is declared righteous by means of the law, therefore, the only hope is to follow Abraham’s example and trust in the Righteousness of God!

PAUL IS NOT SAYING lost people cannot merit their righteousness by the works of the law, therefore, they can’t trust in God either!

We must understand that each lost individual, not God, is responsible for how he or she responds to the gospel’s appeal to be reconciled!

SPREAD THE WORD!

104 thoughts on “Can The Lost Do What is Right?

  1. Eric,
    This is another great article that we need!

    This is why I love this site and urge others to financially support this site.

    We need concise, cogent articles available so that people will have the material they need when the YRR wave hits them. They need simple biblical answers when they are hit with the extra-biblical “dead men dont make choices” and “you must have a man-centered Gospel” and the “your faith is a work.”

    Thanks

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Its ALWAYS baffled me why some people would continue to insist that… Faith is a work. In reading the book of Romans…I stumbled upon the truth that Faith is not counted as a work by God! It clearly stated that Faith was NOT a work…. that revelation set me free (from possibly going down the opposite track), and yet the same people I showed this truth to still didn’t consent!
      Romans4
      1What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?
      2For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
      3For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
      4Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
      BUT TO HIM THAT WORKETH NOT, BUT BELIEVETH on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
      6Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness WITHOUT WORKS

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Amen Clare. It is clear in scripture that faith is not a meritorious work or one of the “works” that Paul is speaking of. Paul continually contrasts faith vs. human works and teaches that we are saved thru faith not works. But interestingly faith is the one “work of God” Our Lord Jesus instructs us to do to gain salvation … “Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?”” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.””. John 6:28-29. So in one sense you could say that faith,or believing in Him, is a work, the one work of God Christ commanded that we do. So the next time you get the “faith is a work” take them to John 6. Yes, faith is a work (the work of God), It’s the one and only “work” that Jesus taught that a man must do (as opposed of course to human works).
        ‭‭

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks! Andy!!!

        Will definitely be adding this truth to my notes and responses.
        That’s great
        Amen!

        Like

  2. Excellent post Eric! The parable of the sower proves faith in the Word is able to be exercised in a heart before the fruit of regeneration from that Word takes place… and the only hindrance to salvation mentioned is hard hearts, shallow hearts and thorny hearts not allowing the Word to complete its work and produce the fruit of salvation.

    There is no hint by Jesus that the first three hearts were eternally immutably stuck in that position. Even Satan believed that the hard heart could get saved as long as the Word remained in it.

    Luke 8:12 NKJV — “Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Eric,
    Interesting how your article and premise coincide with so much of Scripture.

    Look what Luke says about Zechariah and Elizabeth….

    1:6 Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly.

    No mention of anything special. Just God-fearing Jews…. just like the word talks about God-fearing Gentiles.

    Even Lydia (who is a Calvinist hero) was a God-Worshiper (and down by the river to pray) before she encountered the Gospel.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Lydia was a Jewish convert therefore a “worshiper of God” but not a Christian but a sinner like the Apostle was a Jewish Worisher of God who God had to save. Thus God had to open Lydia heart to understand and receive the things Paul was saying. Same for Cornelius who in a sense was an old Testament believer who trusted the types and shadows that pointed to Christ but needed to come to a knowledge of a fuller meaning of Salvation Christ. The word of God cannot contradict itself. It cannot say this: ” John 3:20 – 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. Only when there is a work of soveriegn grace of the Holy Spirit will the sinner do the truth and come to Christ John 3:21. But until then he cannot come John 6:44. If faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God then that means there was a place and time in history that we all did not have faith. Paul prayed to rescued from evil wicked men, he said not all have faith I believe in Titus. We must take the whole counsel of God into consideration and even I have not here because only short pararaghs arre what is wanted and if this comment allowed I pray that tongues will not be set on fire by hell and curse me and then go to church on Sunday and bless God. For Such things ought not to be.

        Like

  4. I have had numerous ‘discussions’ with Calvinists in the last 30, yes, count ’em, 30 years on this matter. And I have had my arguments straw-manned so many times that the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz is jealous. (figures, the Scarecrow was brainless.)

    My question would be, what makes someone jump into a raging river or run into a burning house to save someone?

    Is that a salvific act? Nope.

    But I contend it is a good act, and the one being rescued would consider it a wonderfully great act.

    Calvinists are at a loss to speculate on the motivation of such heroism. For to say it is an intrinsically good act – in and of itself – means the beginning of the end of their Calvinist tapestry of interwoven conundrums.

    Such heroes when interviewed refuse the hero label. “I just did what anyone else would do” is the usual response.

    I speculate that their motivation is an expression of the value of life. And, going further, I think it is an illustration of the imago Dei; although, if true, would be a sub-conscious response.

    Fun to think about, and especially fun to ask a Calvinist.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ok, I will take the bait and bite:

      Yes my brother in Christ long yes. But are you up to the task, or will you just use sarcasm, man-made philosophy, vain deceit and words? Or will you use your large vocublary like the sub-conconscious that really did not even belong in the sentence you use?. Will you interact with the subtance I wrote? Will you seriously interact with the Holy Scripture I gave to show “Let God be true and every man a Liar.? WIll you even read it? Most don’t? Too much for them? They like their short snappy sarcasm comments like I burned down so many Calvinist strawmen, I have been doing this for 50 years. The Calvinist does not even follow Christ he follows John Calvin and worships the god of John Calvin. I have made no mention of John Calvin. But I have used the stronghold, mighty tower and the Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God.

      You said my brother in Christ (I am assuming you are a Christian, Since I do not know you personally, I really do not what your take on Reformed/Calvinist Christians are. That is if you believe they are in Christ or not being a Christian.)

      But you said: “Calvinists are at a loss to speculate on the motivation of such heroism. For to say it is an intrinsically good act – in and of itself – means the beginning of the end of their Calvinist tapestry of interwoven conundrums”

      My Words: “Care to clarify.this quote a little more. after I got past the sanctified sarcasm which I am sure Brian Wagner took great delight in. For he has made me laugh many times with his brand of sarcasm. Reformed believers have no problems with sinners doing good works as long as it is studied and remembered well from Holy Scriptures its right understanding.

      2 Timothy 2:15: – Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

      Evil, wicked sinners can and do works and make good moral choices. I am not really sure where you see the Calvinist Christian has a problem with that unless you, (and I mean this in respect) err not knowing the word of God or the whole Counsel. I know I do not know it all either but I think you are missing the point altogether because of just maybe your dislike of Calvinism. That is why Brian likes and shows his approval of these comments that are not based on Holy Scripture and I am going to address him on that because a man of his stature should know better.

      You used no Holy Scripture, trusting for the most part in the philosophy of your mind. Now when I use the word of God that will make the knowledge, wisdom and and philosophy of man look foolish you will cry, STRAWMAN.

      1 Corinthians 1:25 – For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
      1 Corinthians 1:21 – For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.
      Colossians 2:8 – Take heed lest there will be anyone taking you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the principles of the world and not according to Christ.

      Now that I believe I know with what and whom I am dealing with now I will engage you so I will not be taken captive. That is through the philosophy of man, empty deciet (straw men, I burn them down rather quickly) and the traditions of men that are ot according to to Christ.

      My words: I could use the, “Let us make man in our own image” thing, and say that it is just tainted with sin. but man still bears God’s image and that is one reason, (just one reason) we do not see total chaos. But also not more human flourishing.

      James 3:9 – With the tongue we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness.
      James3:10 – From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so.

      My Words: So yes, Wicked evil sinners can and do good works and make good moral choices. These are good and moral before man only and not before God. How can that be so you ask: They are good and moral. They are sin from DEFECT. That is utter comptetness with blemished imperfection before a righteous Holy God whose Son, Jesus said, Be perfect as your heavenly Father in Heaven is perfect. It is a lack of want of something being absolutetly esential out of Holy necessity for the completness and perfectness of perfecting Holiness in the fear of the Lord, cleansing themselves of the flesh and the spirit.

      Which brings me to my next which is still connected to the previous point, There is not holy desire in the wicked sinnner who is evil in heart and when his actions manifest they are wicked. Yes even the good and works and moral choices are wicked, evil, undone and unacceptable to and before God, Jesus told his disciples in John 15, “without me you can do nothing and the branch that abides in Him bears much fruit bear much fruit and Glorifies His Father in Heaven and proves they are His Disciples, followers of Jesus.

      John 15:5 – 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
      JOhn 15:8 – 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

      If a Christian can do nothing without Christ and must be abiding within him to bear fruit that gloriffies God what can the evil sinner’s wicked so called wicked “idol of free” do who is not abiding in Chist. When Christ said “YOU CAN DO NOTHING, HE DID NOT MEAN A LITTLE SOMETHING) It is the Spirit that gives life, the flesh profits nothing.

      John 6:63 – 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life

      18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find.

      If you do a word study in the Greed the word translated “flesh” speaks of the “sinful nature, the seat of evil passion and fraility, opposed to the spiritual, (makes me think of those in Romans 8 who are Spiritually minded, for they wiil live), also carnally minded, fleshly, the sensous nature of man, his animal cravings which incite to sin, sinful depravity,

      Rom 7:18  For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.

      John 6:63 and Romand 7:18 both have the same Greek term translated in English as “Flesh:meaning the same in both immediate and surrounging contextes. They both speak of an inability the beliver and the sinner has because of the sinful evil and corrupt flesh.

      Back to verse John6:63 before I finish with “sinners doing good works and making good moral choices that are acceptable and pleasing to man but rejected and hated by God as filthy rags,

      John 6:63 – …..the flesh “profits ‘,,,,,,

      What can a sinners evil corrupt wicked sinful flesh that is all described above do that is pleasing and acceptable to God and brings pleasure to His heart and Glory to His name.

      Remember we leaned in John 15 that Jesus told His disciples that “WITHOUT ME” you “CAN DO NOTHING” (And I said NOTHING does not mean a little SOMETHING)

      John 5:63: – “profits” – KJV says “that quickeneth” reminds me of Ephesians 2

      2 And you [He made alive when you] were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of your transgressions and sins,
      2 in which you once walked. You were following the ways of this world [influenced by this present age], in accordance with the prince of the power of the air (Satan), the spirit who is now at work in the disobedient [the unbelieving, who fight against the purposes of God].
      Made Alive in Christ

      2 And you [He made alive when you] were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you once walked. You were following the ways of this world [influenced by this present age], in accordance with the prince of the power of the air (Satan), the spirit who is now at work in the disobedient [the unbelieving, who fight against the purposes of God]. 3 Among these [unbelievers] we all once lived in the passions of our flesh [our behavior governed by the sinful self], indulging the desires of [a]human nature [without the Holy Spirit] and [the impulses] of the [sinful] mind. We were, by nature, children [under the sentence] of [God’s] wrath, just like the rest [of mankind]. 4 But God, being [so very] rich in mercy, because of His great and wonderful love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment).
      4 But God, being [so very] rich in mercy, because of His great and wonderful love with which He loved us,
      5 even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment)

      3 Among these [unbelievers] we all once lived in the passions of our flesh [our behavior governed by the sinful self], indulging the desires of [a]human nature [without the Holy Spirit] and [the impulses] of the [sinful] mind. We were, by nature, children [under the sentence] of [God’s] wrath, just like the rest [of mankind].

      Wow, verse 3 talks directly what we just got done talking about the “sinful, corrupt, evil, wicked, opposed to the spiritual, animal natural enticed to sin, of the “flesh. I keep getting side tracked but no more.

      John 6:63 – ….profits ….is the Greek term transalated “profit” meaning, “to help, profit, benefit, accomplish, to be of value, to be useful, advantageous.” Well we no from the Greek term translated in English above as “flesh” that it “does not “profit, that is to help, be of any benifit, accomplish, be of any value or usefulness or anyway spiritually advantages doing any works that are good and pleasing to God, or making moral choices that are holy, godly, pleasing and bringing pleasuring to the heart of God and giving Him all the Glory.

      1 Corinthians 10:31 – 31 So then, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of [our great] God.

      John 6:63 – ….The flesh profits nothing….

      John 6:63 – …. nothing… The Greek term here transaled into the English word “Nothing” means. “of no account, naught, insignificant, useless, worthless, obselete, to come to nothing, to be fruitless,

      So in John 6:63 the “flesh”, that is the seat the sinful nature, the seat of evil passion and fraility, opposed to the spiritual, (makes me think of those in Romans 8 who are Spiritually minded, for they wiil live), also carnally minded, fleshly, the sensous nature of man, his animal cravings which incite to sin, sinful depravity, that “profits” it “does not “profit, that is to help, be of any benifit, accomplish, be of any value or usefulness or anyway spiritually advantages doing any works that are good and pleasing to God, or making moral choices. that are holy, godly, pleasing and bringing pleasuring to the heart of God and giving Him all the Glory. It also does not profit in the sense that it does not in anyway contribute to a wicked unbelieving (Jesus paid the price for unbelif on the cross also) sinner’s salvation or any type of preparation that goes before his or her regeneration or conversion in Christ., the flesh profits “nothing” it is of no account, naught, insignificant, useless, worthless, obselete, to come to nothing,and bears nothing of spiritual fruitfulless to God.

      John 6:63 – It is the Spirit that gives life, the flesh profits nothing, the words I (Jesus) speak they are spirit and they are life. “Jesus, the 2nd Adam or I should say the last Adam who prevailed has life became a life quickening spirit also, he had the Spirit without measure. and he quckened whomever he willed.

      Matthew 11:27 – 27 All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one fully knows and accurately understands the Son except the Father; and no one fully knows and accurately understands the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son [deliberately] wills to reveal Him

      John 17:2 – 2 Just as You have given Him power and authority over all mankind, [now glorify Him] so that He may give eternal life [a]to all whom You have given Him [to be His—permanently and forever].

      Now to finish (and you say, thank the Good Lord of heaven). This is not a subject that is superficial or can be scraped off the surface or cherry pick a verse and say well that settles it as one individual did above whom I am going to answer. Brian Wagner also liked and approved His comment also. There Brian, you will recieve “wounds of a friend. an a “open rebuke that is better than concealed love| You are man of greater stature than that than to believe cherry picking once verse settles it. Did you know Brian that God Himself preached the gospel to Abraham?

      Galations 4: 17 And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God [e]in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect.
      18 For if the inheritance is of the law, it is no longer of promise; but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

      Galatians 3:8 – And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

      Sorry for the interruption, but the good works performed by evil wicked sinners is not accepted by God or pleasing to Him in anyway whatsoever. They are as filthy rags as the authority of Holy Scripture has stated.

      Isaiah 64:6 – We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.

      ” How many in the congregation blush for the incautious man and his “filthy rags!” Adam Clark

      “Filthy rags point to that which to the Israelite was the other extremest form of ceremonial uncleanness, as in Ezekiel 36:17.”

      Leviticus 15:19-33 a woman on her “menstrual period? equaled a evil wicked sinner’s righeousness as “filthy rags” ELLICOT

      “The words :filthy rags” may be rendered, “as a menstruous cloth” John Gill

      (filthy rags—literally, a “menstruous rag” (Le 15:33; 20:18; La 1:17). Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

      Job_15:16  How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water?

      Psa_53:3  Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

      So the good works and good moral choices accepted by men and rejected by God as filthy rags are sin by defect, They lack the right “MOTIVE, DESIRE, INTENT OR DISPOSITION OF HEART AND MIND. Sinners do not do good works accepted by and rejected by God as filthy rags being actions of their heart as wicked and evil, they sin by defect in this way. They do not strive to do these good works or make good moral choices to be godly, holy in a spiritual sense before the Holy God of Heaven who is angry with the wicked everyday. They do not do it for the Glory of God, to be pleasing to Him and bring bring pleasure to His heart, They do not want to. They are slaves to sin. John 8 says those who commit sin are slaves to sin. So the so-called mythical fiction idol of free-will that has the natural innate ability to believe in Christ and do things pleasing to God is nothing more than the Heresy of Pelagianism. I am not calling any of my brothers in Christ on this site heritics. I just believe there is some confusion and ignorance in this area as there are confusion and ignorance in areas I believe in the Bible. Pelegianism believes in the self-determining idol of “free-will” In a sense that is true because even speaking naturally we choose according to the strongest desire or motive we have in our heart or mind at any given moment. I have have spoke of this real life example before down below to a Non-Calvinist: The reason I call it the Pelagian hersey because Eric in his article above even struggles if the sinner has within him natural innnate faith to believe in Christ. Well faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. So if it comes to you, the logical conclusion is that there is a time you did not have it. I could increase, enlarge and multiply the pasages that show evil and wicked men do not have faith and that faith is a giift of grace, the very work of God. Not that God believes for us, but that it is created within us. Christ died for the sin of unbelief also. When those on Soloteriology101 say sinners can do works that are pleasing to God and can by their mythical fictious idol of “free-will’ believe with natural innate faith they are espousing the Palagian Heresy. There is no mention of the power of grace. Being saved by grace though faith. The power of the Holy Spirit in connection with the instrumentality of the Word of God, the Gospel. The word of God being the Sword of the Spirit in Ephesians 5. Why give all this ability to evil sinful man who loves his sin and hates God and for some reason not wanting to give all, and I mean all the Praise and Glory to the Lord Jesus Christ, Looking unto Jesus, the Author, orginator, the very source of our faith, and the one will bring it to a finished state of completion.

      I told the Non-Calvinist he did not have “free-wiill” and that it was a mythical fiction and his will was determined by his greatest desire at any moment, I asked him what his favorite Ice Cream was. He said Chocolate. I told him we are going to pretend that in one hand I have your most favorite ice cream chocolate that usually always determines your will in choosing it and in the other hand I had vanilla. I then told him there was no way he could reach out and take Vanilla instead of Chocolate because his will was strongly determined by the greatest desire of Chocolate. The non-calvinist Smiled and reached out and pretended to take the Vanilla cone of Ice Cream. He felt ver proud that he had just won a victory over a Calvinist. That is until I reminded that our natural will does according to the strongest desire at any given moment. He asked what do you mean? I said you had a greater desire than your most favorite ice cream of chocolate and that desire was proving me wrong and you new strongest desire and motive of heart and mind you acted upon. Proving you will is not free but determined by your desires and motives.

      Rom 3:9  What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, 
      Rom 3:10  as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; 
      Rom 3:11  no one understands; no one seeks for God. 
      Rom 3:12  All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” 
      Rom 3:13  “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” 
      Rom 3:14  “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.” 
      Rom 3:15  “Their feet are swift to shed blood; 
      Rom 3:16  in their paths are ruin and misery, 
      Rom 3:17  and the way of peace they have not known.” 
      Rom 3:18  “There is no fear of God before their eyes.” 
      Rom 3:19  Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. 
      Rom 3:20  For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. 

      John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
      20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

      How bout a like my brother in Christ Brian? 🙂

      Like

  5. Thanks again for this!!

    I have been re-reading Romans 7…

    And came to the conclusion that:
    Chapter 7/8 is not really talking about the depravity of man, nor really how man responds or not to the gospel. It seems to me to be trying to encourage the saints (Jewish in particular) that they should stick to their new found faith, and not bow down to any pressure to return to the Jewish OT law(religion)… as they are the true Sons of God… (those whom are of The Faith of Christ)

    The WHOLE BOOK I’ve come to find is centred on that theme for the most part… Chapter 2, Chapter 3 especially vs 11 onwards I’ve realised is actually talking about the ” religious/ works based Jew”…..who think they have right standing with God … but as a matter of fact … they haven’t! Because vs11-18 is actually how God sees them (all of those verses are from the OT talking about Isreal). Leading to Vs20…THEREFORE by the deeds of the law, shall no flesh be justified IN HIS SIGHT…. for by the law is actually the knowledge sin… which Paul goes on the explain how this is so, in Chapter 7 (another chapter dedicated to “those under the law”

    There are also verses in the same Chapter, which shows that Paul in his unsaved/unregenerate/pre born again state…. had a will that wanted to do right.

    His problem became when he realised that sin in his members (body of death)….made it impossible for him to fulfil the law 100% in order to merit that he was Righteous/ not a sinner.

    I’ve condensed and rephrased the verses, just to bring out the point:
    Vs14 the law is spiritual.. but we are carnal, sold under sin. Sold to a master that tells us to sin.
    Vs15 and16 the good I see in the law, that its the right thing to do, and the things it says I shouldn’t do… I AGREE WITH, I CONSENT that the law is good.

    Vs17… so because I agree with the law, then its actually sin in me that’s causing the problem of disobedience…. for THE WILL IS PRESENT IN ME, but how to perform what is good (ie good from Gods perspective that is 100% compliance, not one law broken!)I find not.

    Vs19&20 the GOOD I WANT TO DO, I fail and the evil I dont want to do, I find that I do!…. its actually sin in me causing this problem!

    Vs20-23 there are 2 laws working in his body.. one is the GOOD THAT HE WANTS TO DO in his mind, and THE DELIGHT HE HAS FOR THE LAW IN THE INWARD MAN… and the 2nd law, called the law of sin… which is in his members and wars against his mind(the “consenting and willing side of him) and brings him into captivity to sin (ie transgresses the law of works).

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      1. THAT IS A FANTASTIC ARTICLE!!! And as you said in your comments…”that settles it!!” 🙂

        I was wondering if you or anyone found a fault/or error with my comment, in that its not in line with the teaching of the article in the link?

        I’d also would value some feedback on my personal notes below… on my definition of “CALLED” am asking because some say called means to be called to get saved by God…. but I see that differently based on the chapter.

        Rom8:
        28And we know (literary:to see , to perceive with the eye) that all things work together for good to them that love God,(saints of Old, also the whom and the forknown ones in vs 29 and in Rom11:2) to them who are the called (IE CALLED ‘CHILDREN OF GOD’ (Romans9: 7-8 is declaring whom are the ones God calls Children, as oppose those whom “He will CALLto get saved”)….according to his purpose.(ie redemption/being a true “son of God” by faith and not works of law,)Rom9:11(nor by birth/lineage) Romans9: 7-8

        Verse 30:
        them( saints of old) he also called (IE CALLED THEM “SONS OF GOD”- Rom9:8):
        and whom he called (“the sons of God” ie title, names them), them he also justified:
        and whom he justified,
        them he also glorified.

        ROM9:7-8

        7NEITHER, BECAUSE they are the seed of Abraham, ARE THEY ALL CHILDREN: BUT, IN ISAAC shall thy seed BE CALLED.
        THAT IS,(paraphrase…what I (Paul) mean is that) They which are the CHILDREN OF the FLESH, these are NOT THE CHILDREN of God: BUT THE CHILDREN OF THE PROMISE ARE COUNTED for the seed.

        So I take the Called in Rom8:28 onwards to be meaning those God calls HIS children.
        As oppose those God Calls….(to salvation)
        Especially since its been established that the people Paul says God is talking about are the “known” ones, the ones whom love Him, the ones because they are saved, have been predestined to be conformed into His image… starting from salvation here on earth all the way to when He returns and we will be like Him (salvation completed/fulfilled)

        So therefore the Called, are not (unsaved that God is going to Call to be saved)…. but are Saved ones by Faith, whom God called….. Called what? “Children of God” Rom9:8

        1John3:

        1Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, THAT WE SHOULD BE CALLED THE SONS OF GOD: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
        2Beloved, NOW ARE WE THE SONS OF GOD, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
        3And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

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  6. One of the gotcha, go-to verses that Calvinist will use to try to debunk this article will be 1 Cor 2:14. Actually they only use a half-verse (as usual!)….

    “….but considers them foolishness,and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.”

    But —again as usual— they do not see the context of the verse.

    2:1-7 This world does not function on man’s ideas or plans but on God’s plan (Christ crucified) and the Spirit’s power.

    2:8 “None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”

    If they had understood it and accepted it (see 2:14) they would not …..

    It does not say they were kept by God from understanding (perhaps other passages would teach us that they were blinded by Satan “lest they believe”)

    Just using the phrase “they would not have” tells us that another outcome could have been possible.

    2:9-10 “However, as it is written:
    “What no eye has seen,
    what no ear has heard,
    and what no human mind has conceived”[b]—
    the things God has prepared for those who love him—

    these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.”

    God has prepared this things for those who love Him (like Zechariah and Elizabeth, Luke 1). It never says for those who are “irresistibly forced to love Him.”

    2:10-11 “The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them?”

    What is the Spirit searching for!? Why is the Spirit looking for anything if He already planned everything? Why does it says that a person’s own spirit knows their thoughts best? But we are taught (by Calvinists) that God decreed all that –before time?

    2:12-13 We are taught by the Spirit.

    2:14 “The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.”

    This verse does not say that you have to be regenerated before you can do any good (Zechariah & Elizabeth)! It does not say you have to be regenerated before you can seek the things of God (Seek first His kingdom!). This verse does not say that we are “too dead” to respond to God’s call to repent (prodigal son —called “dead” twice).

    It simply says (what it says!) that we will not understand the spiritual mysteries (v 7) of God without the Spirit.

    A baby who knows nothing about the miracle of conception and birth…. who knows nothing about the bond of love and sacrifice of his mother….who knows nothing of the “mysteries” of all that the mother will do for him will still accept the offer of milk!

    You dont have to know all the mysteries of God (which He will teach by His Spirit) to accept His offer to “come unto me all you who labor with heavy burdens and I will give you rest.”

    Like

    1. I have not read the article yes FOH but have saved it and I promise I will read it later. I do want to respond to this comment of yours my friend and brother in Christ

      FOH said: “One of the gotcha, go-to verses that Calvinist will use to try to debunk this article will be 1 Cor 2:14. Actually, they only use a half-verse (as usual!)….”

      I am using Grammarly now so my writing skills should be much better. I actually fixed the word “actually| for you. Your welcome my brother. Love this software. Might write that book now my brother in Christ Brian.

      1 Corinthians 2:14 – But the natural unbelieving man does not accept the things[the teachings and revelations] of the Spirit of God. they are foolishness [absurd and illogical] to him, and he is incapable of understanding them. because they are spiritually discerned and appreciated. [and he is unqualified to judge such spiritual matters]. 2015 Amplified Study Bible

      1 Corinthians 2:14 – 1Co 2:14  But 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. KJV

      Notice FOH, I quoted the entire verse, I did not leave the second half of it out and will address it as well as the first half. You make a disingenuous assertion and accusation against Calvinist above in saying that is our habit and way of doing things. I will put a Calvinist Biblical Exegesis up against a Non-Calvinist Biblical Exegesis any day. Need I remind you of the Romans 9 debate. I know we both believe our side prevailed. It is about the truth of God not about one side or the other side winning my brother.

      You say this is a gotcha verse to debunk the article. Well, I have not read the article yet, but FOH could you give some examples of Calvinists who have used this verse in this matter? This will prove your integrity and truthfulness in the matter and show that you just do not have a deep-seated ill-will and hatred for Calvinism. Some examples, please. Examples where they use only (half of the verse). The burden of proof is on you my brother in Christ. Remember the Apostle said to let every one of you speak truth to his brother and in the Ten Commandments it says, “thou shalt not lie.” Looking forward to these examples with great curiosity and anticipation

      FOH says: “.But —again as usual— they do not see the context of the verse.”

      Another assertion and accusation by FOH, Please provide examples related to the article you provided so we will no you speak with a tongue of truth and integrity. Death and life are in the power of the tongue. The character is more important than Calvinism and Non-Calvinism. You have three very Godly men on this site I disagree like but I want to be like, in holiness of heart and love and outwardly manifesting the beauty of Christ. I call them the Holy Triad on Soteriology101. Not meant to blaspheme the Trinity in any way. They are Dr. Flowers. Brian Wagner and Eric the Administrator/

      FOH says: “God has prepared these things for those who love Him (like Zechariah and Elizabeth, Luke 1). It never says for those who are “irresistibly forced to love Him.”

      Neither do the Calvinist say that they were “irresistibly forced to love him” Fist of all that would be impossible to do unless there is a miracle of grace to change the wicked evil hating hostile heart of the sinner?

      John 3:19-21 – 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.
      20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.
      21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

      You see FOH as I have told you numerous times, evil wicked sinners hate the light of Christ, the love the darkness of sin. They are voluntary sins and even their wills are in bondage to it’s enslaving power. Those who commit sin are a slave to sin John 8. They will not come to the truth because their wills are in love and take great pleasure in the sin they are in bondage to. And they have this great hatred and hostility toward a holy God who is angry with sinners every day. The evil, wicked, sinner thinks the gospel is foolishness, silly, nonsense, absurd and illogical,

      But when he “is born again (from above, not from the fictitious idol of free-will) he will come to the light and it will be clearly seen his deeds are done in God.

      John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
      6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
      7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’
      8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

      Being born again is Regeneration, coming to Christ in Faith believing is conversion and the believing sinner does so willingly because he is drawn effectually and lovingly to Christ and will be raised up on the last day.

      John 6:44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him [giving him the desire to come to Me], and I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day.

      John 6:65 And He was saying, “This is the reason why I have told you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him [that is unless he is enabled to do so] by the Father.”

      God has to take out the heart of stone that is stubborn and rebellious, lives and walks a lifestyle of sin, is hateful and hostile to God and put in a heart of God that is willing, and pliable.

      Ezekiel 36:26 Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you, and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.

      God’s people become willing in the day of his power, the Sovereign blows where it wishes, that is why some people in church seem to not affected at all by the preaching of the gospel and others are deeply under the conviction of sin and godly sorrow.

      John 3:8 – 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

      Psalms 110:3 – Your people shall be willing in the day of your power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: you have the dew of your youth.

      Song of Solomon 1:4 – 4 Draw me away!

      The Daughters of Jerusalem
      We will run after [a]you.

      The Shulamite
      The king has brought me into his chambers.

      The Daughters of Jerusalem
      We will be glad and rejoice in [b]you.

      We will remember your love more than wine.

      Rightly do they love you.

      Jeremiah 31: – “I have surely heard Ephraim grieving, ‘You have chastised me, and I was chastised, Like an untrained calf; BRING ME BACK, THAT I MAY BE RESTORED, For You are the LORD my God.

      KJV SAYS, …..turn thou me, and I shall be turned, implying an inability without the Almighty’s grace, help and power.

      FOH says: “2:10-11 “The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except for their own spirit within them?”

      What is the Spirit searching for!? Why is the Spirit looking for anything if He already planned everything? Why does it say that a person’s own spirit knows their thoughts best? But we are taught (by Calvinists) that God decreed all that –before time?”

      Do you read the Bible FOH with NON-Calvin glasses on? If so that is a pity because you are missing out on so much of the whole counsel of God. You seem to want to Calvinize every verse.

      Matthew 13:11 Jesus replied to them, “To you, it has been granted to know the [a]mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them, it has not been granted.

      Mark 4:11 He said to them, “The mystery of the kingdom of God has been given to you [who have teachable hearts], but those who are outside [the unbelievers, the spiritually blind] get everything in parables,
      12 so that they will continually look but not see, and they will continually hear but not understand, otherwise they might turn [from their rejection of the truth] and be forgiven.”

      Isaiah 6:9-10 – 9 And He said, “Go, and tell these people:

      ‘Keep on listening, but do not understand;
      Keep on looking, but do not comprehend.’
      10
      “Make the heart of this people insensitive,
      Their ears dull,
      And their eyes dim,
      Otherwise, they might see with their eyes,
      Hear with their ears,
      Understand with their hearts,
      And return and be healed.”

      Matthew 13:11 Jesus replied to them, “To you, it has been granted to know the [b]mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them, it has not been granted. 12 For whoever has [spiritual wisdom because he is receptive to God’s word], to him more will be given, and he will be richly and abundantly supplied; but whoever does not have [spiritual wisdom because he has devalued God’s word], even what he has will be taken away from him. 13 This is the reason I speak to the crowds in parables: because while [having the power of] seeing they do not see, and while [having the power of] hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand and grasp [spiritual things]. 14 In them, the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says,

      ‘You will hear and keep on hearing, but never understand;
      And you will look and keep on looking, but never comprehend;
      15
      For this nation’s heart has grown hard,
      And with their ears, they hardly hear,
      And they have [tightly] closed their eyes,
      Otherwise, they would see with their eyes,
      And hear with their ears,
      And understand with their heart, and turn [to Me]
      And I would heal them [spiritually].’

      16 But blessed [spiritually aware, and favored by God] are your eyes because they see; and your ears, because they hear. 17 I assure you and most solemnly say to you, many prophets and righteous men [who were honorable and in right standing with God] longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

      2 Corinthians 2:14 But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us spreads and makes evident everywhere the sweet fragrance of the knowledge of Him.
      15 For we are the sweet fragrance of Christ [which ascends] to God, [discernible both] among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing;
      16 to the latter one an aroma from death to death [a fatal, offensive odor], but to the other an aroma from life to life [a vital fragrance, living and fresh].

      You see FOH, the preaching of the Gospel to some is foolishness, silly, nonsense, absurd and illogical and always will be, To them, it will be an aroma of death. They are vessels of wrath prepared for destruction. Reprobation.

      To others the preaching of the gospel and the Holy Cross of Christ is not foolishness, it is the power of God unto Salvation until they are glorified and delivered from the presence of sin forever. It is an aroma of life.

      The verses I gave you above FOH, if you are willing to read this that is, meditate, pray over them, Selah, pause and think carefully upon them in connection with what you have written.

      Once again FOH I ask of you, what does it mean to be “TOO DEAD” and where is that found in the Holy Scriptures?

      2 And you [He made alive when you] were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of your transgressions and sins,

      2 in which you once walked. You were following the ways of this world [influenced by this present age], in accordance with the prince of the power of the air (Satan), the spirit who is now at work in the disobedient [the unbelieving, who fight against the purposes of God].

      3 Among these [unbelievers] we all once lived in the passions of our flesh [our behavior governed by the sinful self], indulging the desires of [a]human nature [without the Holy Spirit] and [the impulses] of the [sinful] mind. We were, by nature, children [under the sentence] of [God’s] wrath, just like the rest [of mankind].

      4 But God, being [so very] rich in mercy, because of His great and wonderful love with which He loved us,

      5 even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment)

      We are totally and completely dead in trespasses and sins, an utter incapable inability to take one step in the direction of Christ who we hated with the greatest hostility before God caused us to be born again/from above though the instrumentality of the Word/Gospel (the word of God which is the sword of the Spirit). The Spirit of God through intimate connection with the word of God internally creates and produces faith with us, it is the work of God. God does not believe for us, but he does give us the enabling ability and loving desire and the want to, to come to Christ as the Father draws to Christ and Christ will raise us up on the last day. Praise the Lord God of Host There is no God like our God my Brother in Christ Brian my friend!!! I’m about to feel like preaching/

      Even physically or being biology alive we owe it all to God. If he takes his breath of life back we cease to exist, If it is so physically, it is so Spiritually,

      Acts:17:28 For in Him we live and move and exist [that is, in Him we actually have our being], as even some of [a]your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’

      I know too long as always. But this is not superficial stuff. This is the Word of the living God whose ways are past finding Out This is the God of the Universe who wants us to know what he has revealed and that the whole council. I know I don’t even know 2 particles of sand on the beach of God’s Holy Word. But this is more than a superficial surface scratching. We are to study to show ourselves approved, that a workman may rightly divide the word of God and not be ashamed. Father give us the spirit and wisdom of the Lord Jesus Christ.

      Grace to FOH and all who take courage and read this as they did the long article he recommended.

      Allow me to offer a refutation to that article by a classic on reprobation

      http://www.reformedreader.org/rbb/bunyan/reprobation/toc.htm

      Like

  7. Great article!
    Thanks Eric!

    I especially appreciated the distinction of righteousness that is by works of the law vs. righteousness by faith.

    I have ever contemplated the doctrine of “quid pro quo” that some ministries teach in the context of eliciting money.
    Perhaps this is the underlying message in God’s rejection of the offering of Cain, the offerings of King Saul, and the offerings of Balaam.

    The process of “quid pro quo” however, is in fact, the process by which one negotiates with the demonic.
    And this process if rejected by God – as can be seen in the contrast between Elijah’s simply prayer of faith vs. the worshipers of Baal cutting themselves in order to induce their supernatural being to do their bidding. Elijah approaches God with simple faith and humility and the wood and the water are consumed by fire.

    Adam and Eve were at one point ONE with God. The serpent’s trick was to get them, of their own free will, to give up being ONE with God in exchange for being LIKE God. I think righteousness by works of the law is essentially driven by that motivation, and so is witchcraft.

    Thanks again Eric!

    Like

  8. I am a Calvinist a you all know and I believe wicked sinners do good moral acts as running into a fire to save someone, or being a good husband or wife, a good employee, a good father, I am confused. Am I missing something because I still believe there is none good no not one in the sight of God.

    Like

    1. KevinK
      You said …. “I am confused. Am I missing something because I still believe there is none good no not one in the sight of God.”

      You have agreed that unsaved people can rescue people from a fire (do good). Not enough to save themselves. Exactly.

      But Romans 4 juxtaposes (contrasts) works and faith. Abraham had faith. Period. Not —was given faith. He didnt earn it, he just believed.

      You use Eph 2:8-9 but it is grace that is the gift not the faith. Ask any student of Greek.

      So faith is never given —- even one teeeeny time in Scripture. It is required, not given.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You make just an assertion that Abraham had faith and was not given faith. Without any Scriptural proof FOH. You know that will not do with me Sir, respectfully. I gave many Scriptural proofs yesterday showing that wicked evil sinners who hate God do not naturally have innate faith from birth, not even Abraham. Abraham was saved just like the rest of us. He looked to Christ in the future and His finished work.

        Hebrews 11:10 – For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

        The foundations were the Apostles and prophets with JESUS CHRIST BEING THE CHIEF CORNER STONE.

        And every sinner is justified or declared righteous in the sight of God in the same way FOH. Their are no two ways of Salvation.

        Romans 3:23 -for all have sinned (including Abraham) and fall short of the glory of God,
        24.and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

        You misquote me in Ephesians 2:8-9 FOH. I never said that “faith” was the gift. Salvation is the gift being referred to here, “being saved by grace through faith” I am familiar with the Greek on this I can assure you my friend. But it is a gift, meaning it is free, no conditions, no strings attached.

        Yes faith is required, you are right. But you are wrong to say that it is not given. Yesterday I gave a strong case showing that wicked evil sinners do not have faith and I would like to see you address each verse. Next I will give a positive argument to show faith is given or granted (not granted in the incorrect way you use it in Philippians 1:29) by a miracle of grace. God bless my friend. Looking forward to hearing back from you.

        Like

      2. KK,

        I think you are the one making the assertion that faith is given. That is not found ONE time in the Scriptures. But we do see what Hebrews 11 says:

        3 By faith we understand ….

        4 By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did.

        By faith he was commended as righteous…..

        And by faith Abel still speaks, even though he is dead. [[[he still speaks to us! Meaning…have faith!! How does he speak to us if God gives the faith? His example means nothing (“wala” in Tagalog) to us if we all have to be given faith.]]]

        5 By faith Enoch….

        6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. [[ “comes to him” is an actions verb; “believe that he exists” is an action verb; “believe that he rewards those who seek him” action verb; Seek him. Seek him. He rewards those who seek him. ]]

        7 By faith Noah ……….

        8 By faith Abraham ….

        11 By faith even Sarah….

        13 All these people were still living by faith when they died…… Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God….

        17 By faith Abraham ……

        20 By faith Isaac….

        21 By faith Jacob….

        22 By faith Joseph…

        23 By faith Moses’ parents….

        24 By faith Moses ….

        25 He chose…..

        26 He regarded disgrace ….

        27 By faith he left Egypt….

        28 By faith he kept the Passover and the application of blood [[[application of blood—- not just blood in the bucket. I had to be applied]]]

        29 By faith the people….

        30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the army had marched around them for seven days. [[they had faith and acted on their faith]]

        31 By faith the prostitute Rahab …..

        32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets…..

        No verse in the Bible says God gave these people faith…. or gave anyone faith.

        God takes the time to list them by name and commended their faith. He adds these words….

        “he was commended as righteous…..”

        “Abel still speaks, even though he is dead.”

        “Without faith it is impossible to please God…”

        “……must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

        “Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God….”

        “the application of blood” ….who applied the blood?

        Now…. according to Calvinism, God takes all this time to list them by name for using a faith that He irresistibly gave them. What is the point then?

        What is the point of Hebrews 11?

        Also, Christ says:

        Matthew 9:22 Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.”

        Mark 5:34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

        Luke 17:19 Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

        Luke 18: 42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.”

        Matt 8:13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that moment.

        Matt 15: 28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.

        Luke 7:50 Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

        Is Christ deceiving us? Why does He not say —not even one time—- “I have given you the faith and now I will heal you”? In stead He openly states that their personal faith made a difference.

        To His disciples… (Matthew 17:20) He replied, “Because you have so little faith.”

        Why does He not just give them more faith? He wants them to have faith? To have more faith?

        The Scriptures make it clear that we have something to do with our faith. But Calvin whisks it all away with a wave of a wand —- saying— Total Depravity! Man made idea!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. FOH,
        Respectfully, you did not interact with one verse that I gave with exegesis that showed wicked sinners do not have faith, You evaded it seems and went elsewhere. Not meant to offend. But I know this is what impedes a discussion. I am trying to interact with everything you have said. I am going back and I am going to work my way down answering all the Lydia, Cornelius etc issues you brought up because I do not want you to feel that I am evading. I am also going to give you a positive affirmation that faith is a grace or a gift given by God. You will be suprised when you see the one versed you rejected Philippians 1:29 in the Greek says faith is a gift. So I will not discuss or interact with the above sir until you interact with the verses of text I gave you that prove you and I before we were saved by grace through faith did not have innate faith. So we are at a stand still other than me catching up on the other things you have commented about. Which is good it will give me time to catch my brother in Christ. I will not just be asserting I will from God’s word establishing emphatically that faith is a work of God that is produced or created within us. God does not believe for us. We do the believing once we are given or granted the gift of faith. Maybe I will do the positive affirmation that faith is a gift of grace given by God first before I catch up I think. But you need to interact with what I wrote or this discussion will be void and empty. It will be useless for me to stay on defense all the time. This is a discussion, an interaction, back and forth where we acknowledge what each other wrote and interact with it. I know you FOH, this is not your first rodeo, you are battle tested and hardened and not easily offended. That is not my motivation. Just want to steer this in the right direction.

        Like

      4. Wow,
        The pot is black said the kettle. You have written a very very long post with so many verses. But I deserve it. Lesson learned FOH. 🙂 I will cut back because now I see what you mean when so much is written. But I will respond to this post piece by piece in shorter comments and all the other post also. I will give you an example where you are missing it and not taking the whole counsel of God and His Holy Scriptures into Consideration with the point you asserting and trying to prove above and is definitely not founded on God’s Holy Word.

        Let’s look and read about the healing of the lame man at the gate called beautiful in the book of Acts and see where His faith came from to be healed. First I will post the Passage so you can read it.

        Acts 3:1 – Now Peter and John went up together to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour.
        2 And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to [a]ask alms from those who entered the temple;
        3 who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms.
        4 And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, “Look at us.”
        5 So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them.
        6 Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”
        7 And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
        8 So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them—walking, leaping, and praising God.
        9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God.
        10 Then they knew that it was he who sat begging alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
        11 Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed. 12 So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: “Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?
        13 The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go.
        14 But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,
        15 and killed the [b]Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses. 16 And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

        I really do not even need to respond to anymore of your post. This passage destroys all that you have taken out of context and made free-will innate your Pelagian idol. I say Pelagian because you mention nothing about the grace of Christ or the power of the Holy Spirit. It is as if you believe sinners have this faith naturally when they are born and can believe in Christ at anytime even though Jesus told Christians in John 15 that without Him they (the Christians) could do nothing. As I said before, NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN THEY CAN DO A LITTLE SOMETHING. You are talking about the “boogie man” above or you need to clarify.

        But this is where once again (not meant to offend) you err not knowing the scriptures) Look at how faith healed the lame man in Acts 3 and where the faith came from. Was it some natural ability he had within him. Pelagianism. Or was it a grace or gift to be found in Christ that was given to Him which he exercised and began rejoicing and leaping praising God. Let’s look at God’s word and see.

        …… “Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? 13 The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus,

        See how you look at the idol and the pretended power of free will exercising a faith that all have from birth and I look away from myself to the Word that glorifies foremost our God and Savior Jesus Christ.

        Peter makes it clear to the people that it was not by his power or Godliness that healed this man or made him to walk, But, 3 The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus,

        And verse 16 that makes your Pelagianism vain and empty, promising false hope. Like a dark thunder cloud passing over promising a thunder and lightening storm the likes you have never seen, but passes over and never delivers. You words are empty FOH and full of self-deceit.

        Verse 16 of Acts 3 says it was faith in Jesus’ name, that healed the lame man and made him strong.

        God’s Word that Faith is a gift, a virtue or grace is given more evidence in verse 16, Even greater evidence. I would say the ultimate evidence. Only those who are spiritually blind to the truth would not be able to see it or those who are so prideful that they are willing to trade the truth of God for a lie because they hate what they Call Calvinism so much. Let’s see what it says.

        16)…….Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

        where does the Faith come from that healed the lame man. What or shall I say Whom is its source. Jesus our Savior, who comes with healing in His wings.

        The Faith which is in Jesus and comes through Jesus has given the lame man perfect soundness so that he does not go into the temple dancing and leaping praising his pelagian faith and his free will idol but notice he looks away from himself and begins leaping and praising God who glorified His servant Jesus.

        KJV
        Acts 3:16 – And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

        The faith that is by Jesus has given perfect soundness, not pelagian faith, that neglects Christ the Savior and His grace, who said you can do nothing without me in John 15 and once again, NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN YOU CAN DO A LITTLE SOMETHING.

        You can only do anything pleasing to God by abiding in Christ. And we can do all things though Christ who strengthens us.

        Remember Romans 5:6 all the bible translations I gave you for that verse that when we were without strength Christ died for the ungodly. Let’s look at the different words for “without strength” then we are done until next time/

        1. without strength
        2, still powerless
        3. utterly helpless
        4.still weak
        5. still helpless
        6. helpless and sinful

        God Bless my Brother in Christ

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      5. Hey FOH,
        Sorry my friend and brother in Christ. I figured you were going to bow out because the word of God is irrefutable. Your excuses are just to superficial my friend. Your posts are long, choppy, incomplete sentences, need to be clarified, redundent and I could go on and on. I made it a point to do better on my sentences so they would not be run ones and think I did do better. But the the man at the gate of beautiful being healed through the faith that comes thought Jesus Christ just defeats your idol of self-will and man-made faith. I have not taked about Non-Calvininism any different any different than you have about Calvinism my brother. Go back and read your post. You more or less so that it is heresy. And you are disengenous in saying that I have said that Non-Calvinism is a heresy when I am calling you my friend and my brother in Christ. I said you sound like a Pelagian at times and then a semi- Pelegian at times. That is not calling your beliefs a heresy. I even asked you to clarify. I went back and read some of my posts and most of my posts the sentences were not run ons. I did much better. I think you are not ready for this deep of a debate and conversation. You want to keep it superficial and just assert accustion your 20 same old accusations about Calvinists and use your 40-50 go to verses. I could have answered about Lydia and Cornelius. They had converted to the Jewish religion and that is why they were worshipers of God and not true Christians. Although there may be a case that Cornelius was.

        You said almost all my stuff was Calvinist post. I think you did not even read what I wrote my friend. I told you I came here not to defend Calvinism but to expose the false teaching of Non-Calvinism. That is what the Majority of my post consisted of.

        You have dealt with them years ago. FOH, I am sorry to say this. You do not even sound as if you were ever a true Calvinist. I think you might have been enamered with it at once. I don’t think you really understood it and that is why you are unable to refute it. Even as I think Dr Flowers was never a true Calvinist but just enamered with it and never really understood it.

        I do no think I beat you in this debate my friend and brother in Christ. I do think the Word of God from the Calvinist standpoint was strong, powerful and overcoming against the philosphy of Non-Calvinism. That is what you game mostly, philosphy. Your understanding of the word is superficial at best my friend and I do not mean to offend. You know you were not able to engage the scriptures I gave you so you bowed out. But that is ok, It is what I exptected, it always happens. “your too long Kevin. your sentences are run-ons blah blah blah and on it goes” Not one scripture did you interact with to your shame my friend. If I was I would not say anything more until I was able without evading and without exuses and more knowledgeble and accusing others of accusing you of heresy to speak anymore of Calvinism in the disrespectful way it is done here on Soteriology101. Not by all, but my a few.

        So we agree to disagree. I could not just let you make those few last comments as if that was why you were quitting. Yeah, maybe you were not able to keep up. But maybe you are not able or prepared to keep up. Like Eric said there is not time limit on anwering back. I had already made a decision to cut down to very small portions. But God knows when it is over and he has deemed it so. It seems he is moving to minister once again to the JW’s.

        I know some of this will probably offend and maybe get me banned again, but I do not mean it to offend. I just felt like I needed to defend myself against why you were really quitting.

        Shouting in caps. I VERY SELDOM DID THIS AND I WAS NOT SHOUTING JUST TRYING TO EMPHASIZE.

        You were just looking very any and every reason my friend and brother in Christ to quit. I never accused you of heresy only you sounded like it at times and I asked you to clarify.

        Ok God bless you and your family. It was fun while it lasted. Hopefully the Holy Spirit will use what I have written to open and enlighten someone’s eye’s on here. I was banned once before and maybe will be again. I think I know why I was banned before and who made it happen. But maybe Eric will reserve judgement and show mercy. I will take a long break and not post for a month or two.

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      6. Kevin,

        Not that FOH needs my help, but consider Romans 4:5 NKJV (NIV)….

        “But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly (the wicked), HIS faith is accounted for righteousness…”

        Notice the ungodly, or wicked, sinner does have faith (his faith). Now while it is true that not all have faith in Jesus Christ (2 Thessalonians 3:2), most put their faith in their works. They have faith, but it is just misplaced. I would argue that those who believe in evolution have more faith than I do. 🙂

        Also, you said… “Abraham was saved just like the rest of us. He looked to Christ in the future and His finished work.”

        When Abraham was declared righteous, it wasn’t because he “looked to Christ in the future and His finished work”. Abraham was declared righteous because he believed God would fulfill His promise regarding giving him offspring (Genesis 15:5-6). Personally, I don’t believe any of the OT saints were saved because they looked to the cross. While maybe some might have had an inkling what God would do, but they certainly could not have understood a roman cross. And God didn’t expect them to. The gospel Abraham believed was the gospel of the kingdom. The Abrahamic covenant of a people, a land, and a government.

        Hebrews 11:8 (NKJV)….
        By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance (the Promised Land). And he went out, not knowing where he was going.

        Blessings.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. KevinK

      You say this…. “I believe wicked sinners do good moral acts as running into a fire to save someone, or being a good husband or wife, a good employee, a good father.” Amen! Unsaved men choose good things all the time for their kids!

      I dont know if you have kids…. but if so, you want to be a good father right? If you could, you would choose Christ for your child….. but you say to me “FOH I cannot choose for them—-I wish I could!! They must choose for themselves.” But then you realize you dont believe they choose for themselves. So, you cant choose for them. They cant choose for themselves. Who chooses? God, you say.

      The most loving being in the world…. a being that “is love” “God is love” (not “God is loving” He IS love) is the One who must choose.

      And yet….. if they dont have Christ, it is because He did not love them or choose them.

      Ouch!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. FOH do you still believe the good acts of wicked sinners who the wrath of God is upon and who are hostile to God and hate Him and take pleasure and love in there sin, are unrighteous before God and as filthy rags before Him and unacceptable to Him.

        I think God for His image that still remains in wicked sinners although tainted with sin completely that causes them to do good works that are acceptable before MEN but unrighteous and as filthy rags before God. The wicked sinner’s sins are sin from DEFECT FOF. Because something you are not taking into account my friend.

        1 Corinthians 10:31 – So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

        There in not and one bit of motivation in the heart of a sinner in the good work he may do before man that makes him want to glorify God. Whether it is the most simple things as eating or drinking, or whatever he does, that is what we are commanded as Christians my brother to do, even in this discussion to be respectful, not be condescending, not accuse but speak the truth to each other in love. The sinner does not have a heart to be a godly father or a godly husband. The sinner is this and this is God’s words not mine that trump my words and yours.

        John 3:19 – And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.
        20. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.

        You see FOH, there is no wicked sinner who wants to glorify God, he hates the light of Christ and loves and takes pleasure in the darkness of sin, and he will not come to the light lest his evil deeds be exposed. He that commits sin is a slave of sin and wicked sinners are voluntary sinners who take great love and pleasure in the lifestyle of sin they live and hate the God of Holiness and love you mentioned.

        So Brother in love I say this, knowing I could be wrong and I am willing to admit that if I am. Please believe this. I truly believe this at this time but will repent immediately if you show me otherwise but I do not want to quarrel but have a respectful discussion like I did with Eric. Thanks my brother in Christ

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      2. KevinK,
        It is interesting that you insist so heavily on Total Depravity when the Scriptures give us lots of stories to the contrary.

        Acts 10:1 “At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. 2 He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly.”

        Later the Lord arranges for Peter to preach the Gospel to this man….but was he “so dead” he did not think of spiritual things? Sounds like long before Peter came, he was trying to honor God.

        I have already mentioned Lydia, a “worshiper of God.”

        Acts 8 tells us the Ethiopian, “had gone to Jerusalem to worship, 28 and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the Book of Isaiah the prophet.”

        Luke 1 tells about Zechariah and Elizabeth that “Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly.”

        Cain was about to do evil but God told him that he should dominate over evil…. (Gen 4:6) “Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.'”

        It sounds to me like God is telling Cain that he could have chosen “what is right.”

        Over and over and over the Scriptures give us examples of people doing good things, or being able to do things.

        Calvinist use Romans 3 to demonstrate Total Depravity. But (1) we do not all have venom on our lips (do we?) and (2) the context is that Paul was trying to tell the Jews that they were not “automatically righteous” —- it is not a doctrinal statement that no person can do anything good.

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      3. Hey FOH,
        How are you doing brother, good I hope, excellent response. You give some things to think about and I ask for some time to do some research on some of your comments if you will show me some grace please.

        I will make one comment and I do not mean to offend my friend. First Scripture from Romans 3 that you asserted without any real proof that Calvinist use this (it seems you were trying to way use it wrongfully which is possible) to demonstrate Total Depravity. Let’s see what God says and not Calvinist FOH.

        9 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all. For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.

        10 As it is written:
        “There is none righteous, no, not one;
        11
        There is none who understands;
        There is none who seeks after God.
        12
        They have all turned aside;
        They have together become unprofitable;
        There is none who does good, no, not one.”
        13
        “Their throat is an open [d]tomb;
        With their tongues they have practiced deceit”;
        “The poison of asps is under their lips”;
        14
        “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
        15
        “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
        16
        Destruction and misery are in their ways;
        17
        And the way of peace they have not known.”
        “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
        19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become [e]guilty before God.
        20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

        FOH, do you really believe you go one day without sinning with that tongue of yours brother. I know God says that you or I do not.

        Not meaning to offend again FOH but err not knowing the whole counsel of God and the scriptures just wanting to disprove Calvinism. It is much more important to be like Christ. It said above that all are under sin Jew and Gentile and the law of God’s commandments makes every sinner’s mouth of excuses to be in vain and his mouth to shut up before God and you and I are no except.

        Do you and I have venom or poison in our lips. Yeah, I hate to tell ya but we do and I mean that sincerely without offense FOH. But do not take my word on it, let God be true and every man a liar.

        James 3: 2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a [a]perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body.
        3 [b]Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body.
        4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires.
        5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things.
        See how great a forest a little fire kindles! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of [c]iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of [d]nature; and it is set on fire by [e]hell.
        7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind.
        8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
        9 With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the [f]similitude of God.

        In verse two God says “we stumble in many things” that means You and I FOH.

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      4. Accidentally hit the send button but I want to finish this important point in James 3 to show you the Christian at times and probably every day as venom or poison on his lips and needs the cleansing blood of Christ daily.

        2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a [a]perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body.
        3 [b]Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body.
        4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires.
        5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things.
        See how great a forest a little fire kindles! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of [c]iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of [d]nature; and it is set on fire by [e]hell.
        7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind.
        8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
        9 With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the [f]similitude of God.

        If we, You and I FOH are able to control the tongue, lips or mouth we would be perfect like the God of heaven. Can either of us say that. I do not think so. In many words sin is not lacking the book of proverbs says and you have much to say here on this site. Just saying not meaning to offend. The tongue God says is a little member but it boast or brags in sinful arrogance. Sounds like venom sinful poison to me my brother. Remember I am not trying to insult you or prove you wrong just discussing and wanting only the truth of God’s word. If we boast we should boast in the Lord that we are now in Christ. James 3 continues speaking to Christians that the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity, SET ON FIRE BY HELL. Here it is my friend FOH, James 3 says if you read it, “the tongue is an unruly evil, full of poison, (venom) confirming Romans 3. “With it we (James includes himself) we bless God and curse man) I have seen a lot of that on this site from both sides and that is why I promised Eric I would not do it and I asked you to read my last Comment on Eric’s last article “A chartible discourse. Please read it if you have not FOH. I will study and address in a much shorter way the other things you listed. But thanks my brother for responding. I know you are just defending what you sincerely believe and I in no way fault you for that. Blessings

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      5. Oh I do want to mention that I said before that wicked unsaved people can and do good works FOH. But their works are not pleasing or righteous before God but they are as filthy rags, Even Eric stated that in His article. So the wicked can contribute nothing to His Salvation, that is the dividing line between us. But you must first see that God does not accept the good works of sinners, they are sin from defect, the sinners lack the right motivation of heart, they have no desire to please or glorify God. To be godly in those good words that are acceptable by man but are as filthy rags before God. Eric am I right in saying this. Could you chime in my brother

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      6. KK,
        Of course we add no good work to our salvation!

        We believe. We have faith. Read all of Romans 4. Abraham’s faith. Our faith….is not a work.

        My point about Romans 3 is that people take the poetic language and say “no one seeks God” ipso facto (therefore!) God must do all the seeking (and regenerate us first). I was not trying to get you to convince me that I sin with my tongue. I know that to be true.

        The point is that Romans 3:10-11 is used to “prove” that we are “too dead” to even believe. That is not the point of Romans 3 and the rest of Scripture proves that we are not “too dead” to “come unto me all you who labor and I will give you rest.”

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      7. FOH.
        I mean this respectfully so please I beg of you not to be offended. You contradict yourself without knowing it I think. Sort of being self-deceived which we all are to an extent. None of us know it all. You said that all of us do not have “venom on our lips” My main point going to James was to show it stated that our tongue was “unruly and full of poison” James included himself in all of that passage and this is intimately related with Romans 3. “Poison and Venom” James 3 is meant is a universal sense no one is excepted and so is Romans 3 as Paul said that all are under sin, that being Gentiles and Jews, no exceptions.

        If God says “no one seeks God” Then why is it so hard for you to believe what God is saying. It’s like he is speaking through his word but you cannot hear what he is saying as Jesus said to the Jesus, that inability.

        Jesus in the wilderness when tempted by the devil said “it is written” That means you better listen up because he is going to speak the Written Holy Word of God.

        Well guess how the section of Romans 3 starts out, it says, “it is written” So FOH you better listen up and take it serious as the Written Holy Word of God. God is not writing fiction. He is not pretending. He is describing wicked sinful man in the in his spiritual deadliness who only commits sin and even his good works are sinful before the God of heaven.

        10 As it is written:
        “There is none righteous, no, not one;
        11
        There is none who understands;
        There is none who seeks after God.
        12
        They have all turned aside;
        They have together become unprofitable;
        There is none who does good, no, not one.”
        13
        “Their throat is an open [d]tomb;
        With their tongues they have practiced deceit”;
        “The poison of asps is under their lips”;
        14
        “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
        15
        “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
        16
        Destruction and misery are in their ways;
        17
        And the way of peace they have not known.”
        18
        “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

        You know what all that Holy Scripture is useful for FOH that I just pasted for the second time. It ended with verse Now read verse 19-20 and find out what it is used for by God.

        19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become [e]guilty before God.
        20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

        It is so there will be no excuses before a holy and righteous God and the sinner will see his true spiritual condition cry out for the remedy, the Lord Jesus Christ.

        Of course you have Faith FOH you are now a Christian. But before you were a Christian you had no faith because faith is the work of God that he produces within you.

        2 Thessalonians 1:11 – To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power,

        Notice Paul prays that God will fulfill His work of faith with Power. It does not speak of any faith innate within you

        Romans 10:17 – 17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

        FOH, if you had saving faith from the time you were born, naturally innate within you why does God say that “FAITH COMES TO YOU BY HEARING AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD. Why does it have to come to you if as a sinner you already have it. Contradiction. Let God be true and every man a liar.

        2 Thessalonians 3:2 – And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil people, for not everyone has faith.

        Notice “NOT ALL HAVE FAITH” Who are those that do not have faith that Paul is speaking of, sinners, wicked and evil persons. He was surely not speaking of himself and those who were helping him in the ministry of the Lord who had through faith embraced Christ as their Lord and Savior.

        John 6:29 – Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

        It is the Work of God that he produces or creates faith within us as I think the other verses have shown we have no saving faith from birth or innate within us but it is not work for us, it is just the empty hand of faith believing in Jesus who will save us from our sins. Really and actually save from our sins. Not possibility salvation depending on a corrupt wicked free-will and mind and heart that is desperately wicked and deceitful above all things.

        Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

        Since you say FOH that sinners have faith from birth that would make wicked evil sinners alway pleasing to God which contrary to what the Word of God says. Which Hebrews 11:6 says “without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to be pleasing to God. Remember evil and wicked men, sinners do not have faith we read from God’s word earlier. So there is a time that we were without faith, being in the flesh that is, and were not pleasing to God.

        I so wanted to put this verse because you guys are always saying how we misuse it. I want to understand how.

        7 Because the [c]carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be.
        8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

        The evil wicked sinners carnal mind is enmity, hostile, wicked against God, it is not subject to God’s Holy Law nor does it have THE ABILITY TO OBEY GOD’S LAW. WHY?

        Because those who are in the flesh, speaking of the wicked evil sinner, can do nothing (once again speaking of inability) nothing (nothing does not mean a little something) pleasing to God. Jesus even said to His disciples and application to us Christians that without Him we can do nothing.

        FOH what is the difference between the good works of evil wicked sinners doing good works that God counts as filthy rags and Christians saved by grace through faith doing good works, this kind of good works the Word of God speaks of:

        Philippians 1:11 – Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.

        Can you please distinguish them for me.

        What is the meaning of “too Dead”?

        Once again you err my friend not knowing the word of God but leaning in favor of the flesh and sinful corrupt free-will. Sinful wicked man will never come to Christ unless God the Holy Spirit does a miracle of Grace. Did you not read the Scripture I gave you earlier. Interact with the Holy Scripture more FOH that I give you as I do with yours that is where we will come to the truth maybe. Not meant to offend. Here is the text I gave you about coming to Christ by the wicked evil sinful man who hates Christ and is a voluntary slave of the sin he loves and takes great pleasure in.

        John 3:- 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
        20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

        I could pump so many verses in here that prove the total depravity of man and his inability to come to Christ apart from regenerating grace but I do not want to go in several different directions. That is how these conversations get to confusing,

        Sorry so long FOH, but it is difficult not to with you. But I have seen some long ones from you my friend. Hope I have not offended you in anyway. Remember when I refute what you say it is in no way personal my friend and we both must remember that and not take it personal. Anyway if I do I will be banned 🙂 I gave Eric my word.

        Also I am not trying to convince or persuade you of anything. I am just giving you what I believe is the truth, the convincing part comes from the Holy Spirit which I am sure is what you are doing to my brother in Christ. God bless.

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      8. KK
        Is this literally true?

        “Their throat is an open tomb;”

        Friend. Brother.

        context context context.

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      9. I would say my brother in Christ it is a metaphor that represents a real spiritual truth of a wicked evil sinner. What do you think. I could go deeper but I will keep this one short. Yes your always context, immediate, surrounding, audience relevance, history, location ect and then application can be made to us. You agree my friend. I am sure you have more you can add, I have seen you do have knowledge that I do not deny.

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      10. Just another quick reply to this about Cain One thing to remember about me FOH, something I could not get Wagner to understand about me. I do not give up my own personal understanding of a passage of Holy Scripture for another person’s commentary. But through much prayer, Bible study, meditation of the word, daily reading of the bible in a year I come to my own conclusions. That is how I discovered the truth of Being Chosen in Christ from Eternity. You know the Bible actually says we are chosen for salvation and I can show the the verses for it but you guys actually put the cart before the horse and say we are saved and then God elects us. Why is that. Because you would be admitting something is true of Calvinism. Wow FOH, just be honest about God’s word. Not sure if you believe that but many Non-Calvinist do. Would be interested in your thoughts on that. Are we Elected or Chosen to Salvation or Saved and then elected by God. Show me Scriptural proof for whatever stance you take my friend. I discovered the truth of being eternally elected in Christ unto Salvation in time and history through the preaching of the gospel through prayer, meditation, study, the Holy Spirit and daily Bible reading. When I read commentaries I always search the scriptures to see if what they are saying is truthful and confirms what scriptures is saying. They have been beneficial to me and have corrected me at times and there are many times I have found them to be faulty But you know what FOH, anything you or I say could be put in a book and called a commentary, so don’t knock them to much, but be cautious and trust mostly in prayerful study and the Holy Spirit who will teach us all things.. But God has given us gifts in the Body of Christ, Pastors and teachers who are gifted and graced with an understanding of the Bible that is far greater than a lot of us and we must not take that for granted but even as some Christians searched the scriptures to check out the Apostle Paul who was infallible in speaking God’s words we definitely need to check out Pastors and teachers who are infallible about their understanding of the Bible. But at the same time realizing we are but mere sinful men too and also fallible. Go figure.

        I start with Martin Luther in His Masterwork and Classic Book, The Bondage of the Will. I am sure you have read it being a former Calvinist. He knew the Hebrew language quite well and this is why you err with Cain and Genesis 4:7

        He says and I quote: “Gen. 4:7 obligation does not imply ability

        Another passage is cited by our Diatribe (Remember he is refuting Eramus who I believe was a Pelagian, here referred to as Diatribe), from Genesis 4, where the Lord says to Cain: :Under thee shall be the desire of sin and thou shalt rule over it” (v. 7) “Here it is shown, ” says the Diatribe, “that the motions of the mind to evil can be overcome, and that they do not bring with them a necessity of sinning.”

        (MY WORDS FOH, THIS IS EXACTLY HOW YOU ARE UNDERSTANDING THIS VERSE AND THAT IS THE PELAGIAN HERESY. I AM NOT CALLING YOU A HERETIC MY BROTHER IN CHRIST, I JUST BELIEVE YOU NEED TO CLARIFY YOUR POSITION. DR. FLOWERS HAS HAD THIS SAME PROBLEM OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN. HE TALKS AND SOUNDS LIKE A PELAGIAN AND THEN COMES TO HIS OWN DEFENSE AND SOUNDS LIKE A SEMI-PELAGIAN ONLY TO SOUND ONCE AGAIN LIKE A PELAGIAN. I LISTENED TO A CONVERSATION HE HAD WITH DR. SEAN COLE RECENTLY ON YOU-TUBE AND HE SOUNDED AT TIMES PELAGIAN AND AT TIMES SEMI-PELAGIAN. THIS IS DOUBLE-TALK. HE WANTS TO GIVE SO MUCH POWER AND GLORY TO THE NON-CALVINIST IDOL OF SO-CALLED FREE-WILL (A WILL THAT IS IN BONDAGE TO SIN, HE THAT COMMITS SIN IS A SLAVE TO SIN) THAT HE TAKES AWAY FROM THE GLORY AND POWER OF GOD ALMIGHTY’ AND THE FACT THAT JESUS SAID IN JOHN 15 THAT WITHOUT ME YOU CAN DO NOTHING. AND ONCE AGAIN, NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN YOU CAN DO OR HAVE THE ABILITY TO DO A LITTLE SOMETHING THAT IS PLEASING TO GOD. YOU MUST BY THE GRACE OF GOD THOUGH FAITH IN CHRIST BE ABIDING IN HIM AND YOU WILL BEAR FRUIT, GOOD WORKS THAT ARE TO THE GLORY AND PRAISE OF GOD.. BACK TO LUTHER)

        “These words, the motions of the mind to evil can be overcome” are ambiguous; but from the force of the sentiment, the inference drawn and the subject matter, they must mean that it is the power of free-will to overcome its motions to evil; and that these motions do not bring upon it any necessity to sin:. Here again, what is excluded from that which is ascribed to free-will? What need is there of the Spirit, or Christ, of God, if “free-will” can overcome (without me you can do nothing, no ability to be spiritually moral, holiness of heart unless you are abiding in Christ, outwardly you can reform yourself so that you look like a white washed tombstone, but inwardly you are still full of dead men’s bones) the motions of the mind to do evil. (oh the power of the Non-Calvinist Pelganian idol of free-will. (Quotes are my words FOH a little sanctified sarcasm courtesy of my friend Brian Wagner the best of the best at it) Luther continues: “Again, where is that PROBABLE VIEW which says that “free-will” cannot even will good? Victory over evil is here ascribed to that which neither wills nor desires good!!! The thoughtlessness of our friend the Diatribe is exceedingly excessive!!!
        “Here is the matter in a nutshell,” Luther continues, “As I said, by statements of this sort, this man is shown, not what he can do, but what he ought to do. (elsewhere in the book Luther in sarcasm to Erasmus says even a SCHOOL BOY KNOWS THIS) “Cain is therefore told that he ought to rule over his sin (as his obligation to keep the holy law of God), and keep its desires under his control, But this he neither did nor could do, for the rule of another, Satan. already bore heavily upon him.” (Scriptures that confirm this very fact, that Cain belonged to and was enslaved to Satan and his works were evil are posted below from the NT) It is well known that the HEBREWS OFTEN USE THE FUTURE INDICATIVE FOR THE IMPERATIVE, as in Exodus 20; Thou shalt have no other gods but me, “thou shalt not kill”, Thou shalt not commit adultery,” (vv. 3, 13-14) and there are countless such cases. If these words are taken indicatively, as they stand, they would be promises of God; and since He cannot lie, the result would be that no man would sin; and then it would be needless to give men commandments!! So our translators would have rendered this passage more correctly as follows; “Let its desire be under thee, and rule thou over it.” Similarly it ought to be said concerning the woman: “Be thou under they husband, and let him rule over thee” (Genesis 3:16) That the words were not spoken to Cain is an indicative sense is proved by the fact that they would have been a Divine promise; but they were not a promise, for the opposite of them ensued in Cain’s conduct.

        LUTHER’S EXPOSITION OF GENESIS 4:7 COMPLETE AND I THINK IRREFUTABLE

        “If you skip the rest of this FOH, for Christ’s sake and God’s glory, at least scroll to the bottom and read the three verses from the NT where God describes Cain’s character and lifestyle. Cain did not make Faith’s Hall of Fame in Hebrews 11. He made the Reprobate’s Hall of Shame, the wicked prepared for the day of destruction.

        3. And now, lastly, one word about the command, which is also a promise: ‘To thee shall be its desire, and thou shalt rule over it.’

        Man’s primitive charter, according to the earlier chapters of Genesis, was to have dominion over the beasts of the field. Cain knew what it was to war against the wild creatures which contested the possession of the earth with man, and to tame some of them for his uses. And, says the divine voice, just as you war against the beasts of prey, just as you subdue to your purposes and yoke to your implements the tamable animals over which you have dominion, so rule over this wild beast that is threatening you. It is needful for all men, if they do not mean to be torn to pieces, to master the animal that is in them, and the wild thing that has been created out of them. It is bone of your bone and flesh of your flesh. It is your own evil that is thus incarnated there, as it were, before you; and you have to subdue it, if it is not to tyrannise over you. We all admit that in theory, but how terribly hard the practice! The words of our text seem to carry but little hope or comfort in them, to the man who has tried-as, no doubt, many of us have tried-to flee the lusts that war against the soul, and to bridle the animal that is in him. Those who have done so most honestly know best how hard it is, and may fairly ask, Is this useless repetition of the threadbare injunction all that you have to say to us? If so, you may as well hold your tongue. A wild beast sits at my door, you say, and then you bid me, ‘Rule thou over it!’ Tell me to tame the tiger! ‘Canst thou draw out Leviathan with a hook? Wilt thou take him a servant for ever?’

        I do not undervalue the earnest and sometimes partially successful efforts at moral reformation which some men of more than usual force of character are able to make, emancipating themselves from the outward practice of gross sin, and achieving for themselves much that is admirable. But if we rightly understand what sin is-namely, the taking self for our law and centre instead of God-and how deep its working and all-pervading its poison, we shall learn the tragic significance of the prophets question, ‘Can the leopard change his spots?’ Then may a man cast out sin from his nature by his own resolve, when the body can eliminate poison from the veins by its own energy. If there is nothing more to be said to the world than this message, ‘Sin lieth at thy door-rule thou over it,’ we have no gospel to preach, and sin’s dominion is secure. For there is nothing in all this world of empty, windy words, more empty and windy than to come to a poor soul that is all bespattered and stained with sin, and say to him: ‘Get up, and make thyself clean, and keep thyself so!’ It cannot be done.

        So my text, though it keeps itself within the limits of the law and only proclaims duty, must have hidden, in its very hardness, a sweet kernel of promise. For what God commands God enables us to do.

        Therefore these words, ‘Rule thou over it,’ do really point onwards through all the ages to that one fact in which every man’s sin is conquered and neutralised, and every man’s struggles may be made hopeful and successful, the great fact that Jesus Christ, God’s own Son, came down from heaven, like an athlete descending into the arena, to fight with and to overcome the grim wild beasts, our passions and our sins, and to lead them, transformed, in the silken leash of His love.

        My brother! your sin is mightier than you. The old word of the Psalm is true about every one of us, ‘Our iniquities are stronger than we.’ And, blessed be His name! the hope of the Psalmist is the experience of the Christian: ‘As for my transgressions, Thou wilt purge them away.’ Christ will strengthen you, to conquer; Christ will take away your guilt; Christ will bear, has borne your burden; Christ will cleanse your memory; Christ will purge your conscience. Trusting to Him, and by His power and life within us, we may conquer our evil. Trusting to Him, and for the sake of His blood shed for us all upon the cross, we are delivered from the burden, guilt, and power of our sins and of our sin. With thy hand in His, and thy will submitted to Him, ‘thou shalt tread on the lion and the adder; the young lion and the dragon thou shalt trample under foot.’

        Heb_11:4  By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.

        Hebrews 4:12 speaks of Abel being righteous but not Cain.

        1Jn_3:12  Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous.

        Cain was of the Wicked one the Satan and his own Works were evil. Abel was born again saved by Faith through types and shadows he had of Christ up to that point. Even the one prophesied early in the book of Genesis when it says Christ will crush the head of Satan which makes me think of the scripture in 1 John that for this purpose was the Son of God manifest to destroy the works of the evil one, which we know to be that serpent in the garden of Eden, Satan, The Devil.

        If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”

        First of all FOH, I see God telling Cain what he must do or ought to do not necessarily can do. God destroyed the world wide Flood because its motives, intentions, disposition of heart and actions were evil continually

        Genesis 6:5 – .The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.

        Just because mankind now is in bondage to sin and takes great love and pleasure in sin, voluntary slaves of sin. Because he who commits sin (as a lifestyle, a sinner not in Christ) is a slave of sin. They love the darkness of sin and hate the light of Christ and will not come to the light lest their deeds be exposed. If they do come it is because they have been drawn, not irresistibly against their will, but effectually by the inward grace of the Holy Spirit in connection with the Gospel. He that has heard and learned from the Father Jesus said comes to me. John 6:44-45. OH yeah all that are drawn do come because verse 44 finishes up with Jesus saying he will raise them up on the last day.

        But just because the sinner has lost his ability to obey does not mean God has lost his right to still hold every sinner to obey his holy standard.

        John 6:44 – No one can come to Christ unless the Father draw him, and I will raise him up on the last day.

        Notice the inability. “No one can” The word “can” speaks of “ability” to do something. We learned this in Elementary School. We would ask the teacher, Can I sharpen my pencil, she would say to teach us, are you able to get up and walk over and do it. We would say yes, declaring we had the physical ability. Then the teacher would correct us by saying, you should have said, May I sharpen my pencil because I know you can or have the ability to sharpen your pencil.

        But in John 6:44 Jesus says, “No man “can” (does not have the spiritual ability or enabling power within himself he lost that ability when man’s representative sinned in the garden of Eden and Spiritual death and a sinful nature was passed from generation to generation causing Total Depravity and the branch of it which we speak now Spiritual impotence or inability.

        No man can come to me Jesus said because he does not have the spiritual ability or the enabling power to come, that is given by the Father in John 6:65. But the spiritually impotent sinner comes when the Father effectually draws him, and the same him that is drawn in John 6:44 is said by Jesus to be raised up on the last day. So yes this drawing is effectual, yes irresistible grace in the sense that yes the drawing is resisted but God will eventually overcome all sinful man’s resistance and make him willing in the day of his power. The man who had no ability and could not come to Christ now comes willingly and loving Christ, for God has taken out the heart of stone, the pride, and rebellion, love of sin and wickedness, and put in a heart of flesh that is pliable and willing. A Spiritual Surgical Operation by the Great Physician. Oh the wonders of the Great Grace of God found only in the Lord Jesus Christ.

        Commentary on Cain and sin lying at the door and Cain having the ability to rule over it or mortify it. Read especialy the last part of this commentary. All of it of course but the last part speaks of Cain’s ability and free-will.

        But the expression of Moses has peculiar energy. Sin is said to lie, but it is at the door; for the sinner is not immediately tormented with the fear of judgment; but, gathering around him whatever delights he is able, in order to deceive himself; he walks as in free space, and even revels as in pleasant meadows; when, however, he comes to the door, there he meets with sin, keeping constant guard; and then conscience, which before thought itself at liberty, is arrested, and receives, double punishment for the delay. [239]

        And unto thee shall be his desire. Nearly all commentators refer this to sin, and think that, by this admonition, those depraved hosts are restrained which solicit and impel the mind of man. Therefore, according to their view, the meaning will be of this kind, If sin rises against thee to subdue thee, why dost thou indulge it, and not rather labor to restrain and control it? For it is thy part to subdue and bring into obedience those affections in thy flesh which thou perceivest to be opposed to the will of God, and rebellious against him.’ But I suppose that Moses means something entirely different. I omit to notice that to the Hebrew word for sin is affixed the mark of the feminine gender, but that here two masculine relative pronouns are used. Certainly Moses does not treat particularly of the sin itself which was committed, but of the guilt which is contracted from it, and of the consequent condemnation. How, then, do these words suit, Unto thee shall be his desire?’ [240] There will, however be no need for long refutation when I shall produce the genuine meaning of the expression. It rather seems to be a reproof, by which God charges the impious man with ingratitude, because he held in contempt the honor of primogeniture. The greater are the divine benefits with which any one of us is adorned, the more does he betray his impiety unless he endeavors earnestly to serve the Author of grace to whom he is under obligation. When Abel was regarded as his brother’s inferior, he was, nevertheless, a diligent worshipper of God. But the firstborn worshipped God negligently and perfunctorily, though he had, by the Divine kindness, arrived at so high a dignity; and, therefore, God enlarges upon his sin, because he had not at least imitated his brother, whom he ought to have surpassed as far in piety as he did in the degree of honor. Moreover, this form of speech is common among the Hebrews, that the desire of the inferior should be towards him to whose will he is subject; thus Moses speaks of the woman, (Genesis 3:16,) that her desire should be to her husband. They, however, childishly trifle, who distort this passage to prove the freedom of the will; for if we grant that Cain was admonished of his duty in order that he might apply himself to the subjugation of sin, yet no inherent power of man is to be hence inferred; because it is certain that only by the grace of the Holy Spirit can the affections of the flesh be so mortified that they shall not prevail. Nor, truly, must we conclude, that as often as God commands anything we shall have strength to perform it, but rather we must hold fast the saying of Augustine, Give what thou commandest, and command what thou wilt.’

        v. 7. If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? And if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. The fault lay altogether with Cain himself; for if he had done well, if he had had faith and shown this faith in truly good works, in acceptable offerings, then he would have experienced the appreciation for which he seemed anxious, and could have lifted his countenance in token of a good conscience. If, on the other hand, his sacrifice was not brought in true faith and he was now angry over his rejection, then sin, like a wild, predatory beast, would crouch at the door of his heart, eager for even the slightest opportunity to enter and to work its will. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. That is as it should be in the heart of the child of God. Although the desire of sin is always directed against man with the intention of gaining control over him, yet the believer will keep the upper hand, will hold the wrath of the heart back with the firmness of the sanctified mind.

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      11. KK,
        Sorry friend. Your posts are just too long with run-in sentences. Too may items to handle at once. You keep shouting with all caps and saying we are holding heretical position. I had tried, but I cant keep up.

        Almost all your stuff is Calvinist points I was making (myself) against others years ago. Grace to you….

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      12. FOH,
        I would like to ask you to do me a favor please. I know you may not want to, but just this once will you. I am doing my best to be on my best behavior to honor Christ and keep my promise to Eric,

        Will You go back to Eric’s last post (A Charitable Discourse) and read entirely my last comment so you will no where my heart is coming from in conversing with you guys here. It is important to me. I am not asking much my friend. God has really convicted me in last 7 to 8 days or so, 5 of them I was in the hospital with an infection. Not looking for pity. But if you will read the post I think you will understand. A little long but the sentences are not run together and it will not take long. I ask everyone to read it please. I think it will make a big difference in discussing things with me. God bless to you all and I thank you so much for this opportunity for iron sharpening iron. Eric is a good man, I sense the work of the Holy Spirit in Him, Godliness and Christ-likeness. I would rather be right in that respect more than being a reformed believer/Calvinist any day and that is what my post on his last article is saying. Can we read something for once other than Calvinism or Non-Calvinism. I humbly ask you please FOH and everyone else.

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      13. KevinK

        I have read many of your comments, but I cannot be sure which one you are referring to when you ask me to go back and read them.

        I agree with you about John 3:20…. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light…. but I do wicked things, right? Then next verse says…

        “21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.”

        If you want to start with that verse…. it would look like people can live by the truth BEFORE they come into the light, right?

        KK, when I was a Calvinist, I started (came to the Scripture) with the concept of Total Depravity….and then found a verse or partial verse that would support it. That is a bad approach.

        Calvinists use Lydia in Acts 16…. “The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message.” And they say “See, she was dead till the Lord opened her heart.”

        Nope.

        She had gathered at a place of prayer and the Word says … “She was a worshiper of God.”

        In Luke 15, Christ says that the prodigal son was “dead” two times. MacArthur (Calvinistic) gives a 90 minute sermon saying the father probably had a funeral service for his son. Later he skips over (10 seconds) the words in Scripture that the son “came to his senses” because he must ignore that idea (it does not fit for him).

        Then later he says —– I kid you not—- that this should be called “the parable of the seeking Father.”

        Wow! The father did not seek….. he just waited for the son to come to his senses.

        KK, if you start with Total Depravity —- and will not consider otherwise —-then you will need to rely on Calvin’s ideas. That’s fine. A lot of my friends are Calvinists.

        But I read Matthew 5-7 where Jesus is talking to hundreds or thousands of people on a mountain side and He says “Seek first the kingdom.” I believe He was talking to all of them….. not just a couple.

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      14. Hey FOH.
        I apologize brother. I see you have commented a lot more than I knew. I did not see these other comments show up in my notifications. I will start at the top and start working my way down my friend. You pose some very good questions that challenge me and are going to make me think but (not meant to brag) I am pretty acquainted with the Word of God (does not necessarily mean I am right) So I will come directly to the article for now on to see what you and other have said. Late now. So God bless you FOH, and thanks for being so kind to me and engaging me and helping to see if what I believe is truly the truth of God. Good night my brother and God bless.

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      15. FOH,
        Let us both come to a respectful understanding ok my brother and friend in Christ, I have used the word of God not Calvin. I do not need to rely on Calvin although if I want to quote him I will or another Reformed Scholar who may say something better in the bible than I can. And you do not need Leighton Flowers but you use the bible. So if you will not keep indirectly acquainting me as if I am following John Calvin and got my theology from John Calvin I will not say you have been hanging around on Soteriology101 to much and have now become indoctrinated from Leighton Flowers. I do not mean to offend but I do not think this is fair. Predestination is the one subject Calvin wrote the least on. The only reason it is contributed to him is because he systematized it. Go read what he wrote on Prayer and Justification. He wrote a commentary on the whole bible and contrary to what people may think every verse is not calvinized. His doctrine of Justification you would definitely agree with seeing that is it by grace alone through faith alone that we are justified through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ. There is page after page on the Doctrine of Justification, so much more than Predestination. Most people don’t know this or do not want to know this or just do not believe this. God bless my brother. Hey I still hope and pray I am not offending you, if I do please let me know immediately, I know it is easy to take someone the wrong way when writing on the internet, but as I said before of you FOH, you seem to be battle tested and hardened, and not easily offended, so I will try and be the same my friend

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      16. Brian, I could not reply to you directly to you, But thank you so much my friend and brother in Christ for praying for me. You will notice on here I have always said that it was you and Dr. Flowers who have demonstrated me an inward holiness and love that manifested itself in an outward beauty of Christ. Now I put Eric in that group. A Triad. 🙂 I believe that being conformed to Christ’s likeness in love, gentleness and holiness is more important than right doctrine. I know you have to have your Doctrine of Salvation right to an extent so that it will be counted a a “Magor” and not “minor” but you do not have to understand everything about it to be saved. Yes Christ’s death upon that Holy Cross, His burial and His Resurrection. That fact that the wrath of God is upon sinners and their eternal destiny outside of Christ is one of damnation and hell, burning in the lake of fire forever and ever. (you will not believe this but I may be changing my views on the orthodox views of hell, what do think about hell Brian I do value your opinion. Is there a case for Annalitalion. Or destroying of body and soul in hell. I waver between the two. But a well known Calvinist F. F. Bruce said we at least must consider it a theological idea/theory) I know there are some strong tough verses orthodox Christianity has for the traditional view of hell but there are some strong answers for them too. Man I have such a racing mind and get side-tracked so easy.

        Then we tell the sinner who is burdened with his sin and heavy laden to come to Jesus who is meed and lowly. To flee the wrath of God into the loving graceful arms of Jesus by faith believing in Him for eternal life. We tell the sinner “whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved and come to the (waters of life and drink and thirst no more. We tell them that Jesus is the remedy for the sin and guilt and will save them from the bondage of sin and they will repent doing a 360 turning from a lifestyle of sin to a Holy God and by the grace in Christ through Faith in Him alone inherit eternal life.

        We really have so much in common the Non-Calvinist and the Calvinist. We just disagree how God brings it about. I know the differences and I am not ignoring them. Such as Regeneration precedes faith, Definite Atonement or Particular Redemption and Election from eternity unto Salvation in Christ in time and History.

        But this conversation I think is still important and necessary. If we could just remember to speak the truth in love and ask each other to forgive we sin against each other. Remembering what we do have in common. As I told Eric my friend Brian. One day you and I are going to put off this body of corruption forever, be delivered from the presence of sin forever and put on new glorified bodies like Jesus our Great God and Savior. We will look upon His face, the One who Saved us by His grace. Then You and I will come hand in hand before that Throne of Grace where our Lord and Savior Reigns on High. We will cast our crowns at his feet. We may fall and worship Him, we may weep and cry. We may shout in joy, delight and great pleasure of the pure satisfaction of being in the Presence of the God of our Salvation. Knowing it will be for eternity. One thing we will not be doing is arguing Calvinism and Non-Calvinism

        But on the other hand I know it is important to be as close and pure to the Holy Scripture as possible. So this discussion must and will continue. I only wish with a Holy desire and love that it would continue with the attitude and knowledge from what I have written above my brother.

        The last time I was on here, I know I offended you and hurt you Brian. Please I beg of you to forgive me. Even now I have read what I have written and I hear the Lord to speak and correct gently and softly. I am sorry my brother.

        Please tell me what you think about the “Doctrine of hell” Not going to debate ya. Will just read what you have written. I for now waver between two opinions.

        Blessings in Christ and my His grace be with you always

        Liked by 1 person

      17. Oh, Brian
        I am sorry for calling you a Professor on here. I had forgotten you did not want that to be. For now, on lips closed my brother and friend.

        I am going to ask you something somewhat personal if you do not mind, but feel free not to answer.

        Do you have a Master’s Degree? I promise I will not tell anyone. I am just curious and yes there is a reason I want to know. Not to hurt you or use it in a conversation or anything like that. I give you my word in Christ it will stay between us.

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      18. KK,
        You will not offend me.

        I was a Calvinist for years. I am seminary trained (I dont put much importance in my M.Div) with Hebrew, Greek and the study of 4 other languages. I have been an overseas pastor and missionary for 30+ years and I am a leader in my organization.

        I “get” Calvinism. I jumped on the same wave that Piper and MacArthur jumped on in the 70’s in California. It was a mostly male, white, Western, educated, systematic theology wave that rose up to resist Pentecostalism, the Faith Movement, the Prosperity Gospel, the Emerging Church, and Open Theology.

        I was, like many others, happy to be “safe” in a “secure, traditional, reformed, biblical” place —- unlike those others who “are drifting off into who knows what…”

        Later…. I just read thousands of verses that contradict Fatalism-Determinism-Calvinism and I got tire of saying “we know this verse does not mean this since we know….. (fill in with some Calvinist presupposition).” Calvin’s determinism is the “In sha’Allah” of Islam called Qadr.

        As I read through the Bible year after year, I realized that the weight of the story of the Bible is not Calvinist (the Good News is not that you might be the 1.5% that God loves and saves). Before I was a Calvinist I told people “God loves you and Christ died for you.” But when I became a Calvinist I said….wait I cant tell people that. I could no longer tell people “Repent! Christ died for you!” Calvinism had now convinced me that Christ really only died for 1.5% (or so) of humanity.

        Good News!

        Good News?

        So I looked and found 40-50 verses that Calvinism is propped up on —– and I studied if there could be alternative interpretations for them (I mean why pass thousands of verses through the filter of just these 40 right?).

        When I saw the great interpretations of, say John 6:44 (read Brian Wagner’s in these pages), Eph 1:11, Rom 9, Rom 3:10…. I realized that —– with my good intentions to honor God—- I had believed a man-made philosophy….Calvinism…. which actually makes God a tyrant, not a God of love.

        Now…… You say I did not answer your verses. Your writing is long and (sorry to say it) hard to understand sometimes. If you want, you can send me 1-2-3 verses in short posts and I will try to respond.

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      19. FOH,
        Great background my friend. I am very impressed. It is good to know more about you. You are a very intelligent man. I know you were not being prideful and trying to intimidate me by educational background and the fact that you know 4 other languages. I think that is awesome. That takes discipline, strong discipline and an IQ that I have to admit is very much higher than mine. 🙂 Thank God for the Holy Spirit and Jesus said (John 15) “without me you can do “NOTHING” “NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN A LITTLE SOMETHING” What amazes me here is that Jesus was talking to those who were Christians, saying they are helpless, without strength, no ability to do anything spiritually good or to contribute anything toward their salvation because without Christ we can do nothing. That is why in John 17: 1-2, Jesus said the Father gave Him power over all flesh, and now he (Jesus) gives eternal life to all the Father has given Him.

        There is this theme or doctrine of election running through the gospel of John that just cannot be blind unless you are just spiritually blind to it, arrogant and do not want to admit or just being down right disingenuous Let’s look at it. Remembering that even Christians are without strength, and helpless and have no ability without Christ who said in John 13, Jesus Speaking, ” Without me, you can do nothing, and the Non-Calvinist boast mightily of the sovereignty of his idol of “FREE-WILL” to do what is spiritually pleasing and acceptable before God and before he was a Christian the Non-Calvinist idol of “free-will” made the the deciding factor, that DETERMINED (Non-Calvinist and Determinism) his fate and destiny as to whether he will accept Christ or not. If Christ said to Christians they can do nothing without him, what can wicked evil sinners who hate Jesus and spit in his face every day do with a corrupt evil wicked will that is in bondage to sin and loves it and takes great pleasure in the wickedness they choose according to their sin nature with their wicked “will” because the heart is desperately wicked and deceitful above all things When we as sinners were WITHOUT STRENGTH then Christ died for the ungodly. The Non-Calvinist has this false philosophy and pelegian or semi-pelegian theory that they are not helpless or what you said “TOO DEAD” They have this almighty powerful idol of free-will that steals the glory from God and still have the gall to say all the glory goes to God, but in reality the have to say all Glory goes to the Non-Calvinist because of my almighty powerful idol of free-will (no where taught in the bible) and glory to God a little bit too. But if the Christian can do nothing without Christ FOH, meaning they are helpless, without strength, and have no ability outside of abiding in Christ, what can a corrupt wicked sinner do with an evil will who hates God. Remember Nothing does not mean a little something Let me get back on track here.

        When we were without strength Christ died for the ungodly. Meaning the sinner who is outside of Christ can do nothing spiritually good or pleasing that God will accept or contribute anything to his salvation even as the Christ who is in Christ and is helpless, without strength and has no ability unless he is abiding in Christ, because Jesus said strongly and emphatically “WITHOUT ME YOU CAN DO NOTHING” . i SAY IT AGAIN TO DRIVE THE POINT HOME NOT TO BE REDUNDANT. NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN A LITTLE SOMETHING LIKE THE ALMIGHTY POWER OF THE IDOL OF THE NON-CALVINIST.

        You spoke heavily and and a way disappoving of Calvinism calling it nothing more than Calvinist doctrine. Once again implying we are like parrots are just repeating what we have read from John Calvin and what other Calvinist teachers and Pators have taught us. This I will address my friend as you made a sweeping comment with a broad brush that no one knows the Doctrines of Grace or Reformed Theology/Soteriology unless they have been taught it for they surely did not get it from the Bible. How do you know FOH. Have you asked every Reformed believer. Have you asked me. We have an anointing with us who teaches us all things, so we have no need that any man teaches us. This assertion you made is not based on facts or proof and you need to repent my friend and that publicly on Soteriology101 where you made the sinful prideful comment to make Calvinism look like a false teaching. I will address this more later in another post that is why I stopped on unconditional election about the “all the Father gives Jesus he gives them eternal life.” Now with humility, my friend will you do what I did when Eric corrected me when I was wrong and admit it right here on Soteriology101 and say that I should stick to God’s word and not to human sinful philosophy and made-up assertions that are not based on facts and proofs.

        FOH. Once again my friend please do not be offended. I will clarify what I have said above. I am not angry, prideful and you are my brother in Christ and I have done the same things in the past and will also make the same mistakes in the future. Call me out on them. A fool rejects correction, a wise man will hear and become wiser.

        Read the passages below from different translation of the same verse, Romans 5:6 FOH. See what it says of the Non-Calvinist Philosophy and false assertion and teaching of their favorite idol the almighty powerful free-will that DETERMINES their spiritual destiny. Non-Calvinist and their idol of free-will are believers in determinism. Please read them all.

        Yes I do write to much, this time because I have been away to long and had to make a strong refutation to your comment. It is also not fair of me to send so many verses to you at once.

        But FoH,and I will repeat this. You only have to exegete and refute one verse at a time and I am going to hold you to it my friend or I will call you out at using the debate tactic of evasion. So please start with one verse where I show that sinners do not have faith my friend.

        Oh yeah what about the 70 – 80 verses Non-Calvinism is propped up on. Send them my way my friend. The reformed Faith is not afraid to interact with Holy Scriptures that the Non-Calvinist says Proves him wrong. Are you afraid to interact and perform biblical exegesis with the verses I sent to you FOH? For now on I promise one verse at a time. Man we got a lot of conversatons going on here but you know what I like it and I am starting to like you my friend and brother in Christ. You treat me with kindness. yeah you don’t hold nothing back and you tell me how you really feel but I want you to tell me the truth, but ultimately I want it to line up with God’s truth.

        Read the verses below my friend especially the last verse, it is a suprise, a different one but relates intimately with Romans 5:6 describing accurately the sinner nature, character and actions before God quickened him and made him alive and saved him by Grace though faith in Christ. God having mercy upon whom he will have mery. Not of him how wills or of him who runs (actions) but of God who mercies them.

        New International Version
        Romans 5:6 – You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.

        New Living Translation
        Romans 5:6 – When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners.

        English Standard Version
        Romans 5:6 – For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.

        Berean Study Bible
        Romans 5:6 – For at just the right time, while we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.

        Berean Literal Bible
        Romans 5:6 – Yet indeed Christ, of us still being without strength, according to the right time, died for the ungodly.

        New American Standard Bible
        Romans 5:6 – For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.

        Contemporary English Version
        Romans 5:6 – Christ died for us at a time when we were helpless and sinful. \

        Good News Translation
        Romans 5:6 – For when we were still helpless, Christ died for the wicked at the time that God chose.

        Ephesians 2:1 – And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,
        2 in which you once walked according to the [a]course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,
        3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.

        4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,
        5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
        6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
        7 that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
        8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,
        9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.
        10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them

        God bless my friend and brother in Christ, May the grace of Christ be with you always, and he that began this good work in you complete it, For even as he is the AUTHOR, (ORIGINATOR. SOURCE) OF OUR “FAITH” JESUS WILL COMPLETE IT” THAT IS BRING TI TO A FINISHED STATE OF COMPLETION BY HIS EFFECTUAL POWER, THAT IS ACCOMPLISHING GOD’S WORK OF FAITH IN YOU (THE ONE WHO CREATED OR PRODUCED FAITH IN YOU, FAITH COME BY HEARING AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD) God does not believe for you, he just gives you the faith and the enabling ability to do so, and you will do so willing. because that which you hated you find you have by necessity of a changed heart and new disposition and old things passing away you are loving God and setting your affections on things above.

        2 Thessalonians 1:11 – Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power:

        Hebrews 12:2 – keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him endured a cross and despised the shame and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.

        Romans 10:17 – So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

        John 5:29 – Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”

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      20. Hey FOH,
        I am commenting again because of Brain Wagner jumping in on the conversation when I asked that if you had me blocked so that I could not directly respond to you, please do not participate in this conversation, which would be only you and me now. Brian was trying to prove that Calvin wrote a lot on Calvinism. What Brian has failed to do and I mean this respectfully, because of his hatred of Calvinism is do his homework. Unbecoming of a Professor and a Greek Scholar. But I consider Brian a friend and a very Godly man who I learned a lot from but I cannot hold back the truth when something just is not right. So this is indirectly to you and more directly to Brian. Not meant to offend any of the two of you so please Eric have I am at your mercy my Brother in Christ:

        Concerning the eternal Predestination of God, 192 pages, Hardly what I would call a lengthy book on Predestination and he only wrote because he was responding to someone who was challenging his theological position, (Albertus Pighius) or he would have never wrote. The fact remains he still wrote more on other subjects, the whole counsel of God than that which is wrongly associated with his name, Calvin, such, Calvinism. The real funny thing and I am telling you the truth I have only read about 5-7 percent of the book as it is difficult to read. The Bible Scholars and Theologians of old were far from being superficial. But I plan (with a dictionary and my Greek helps and resources to read through this short book that Calvin wrote out of necessity to Pighius who I think was nothing more than a boogie man heretical pelagian. Read the Institutes on the Doctrine of Justification or the Doctrine of the Knowledge of God or the Doctrine of Prayer or the Doctrine of the Church, all of this far out weighs the 5% or 19% Calvin wrote on Doctrines of Grace. I thank God for what he did write. It was he enough. Because look what it has done. The Doctrines Of Grace and Calvinism is on the Rise and being re-instated in it’s rightful place in the orthodox church, especially in the Southern Baptist Church Denomination. It is like God is raising up new Calvin’s and Luther’s and giving them Godly wisdom and words that cannot be resisted or defeated. Another Reformation. Praise be to the Glory of God’s Grace, Because it is always by Faith Grace alone, through faith alone, Because of Christ alone, to the Glory of God alone. Amen

        Calvin or no Reformed Pastor did not teach me the Doctrines of Grace or Predestination or Reformed Soteriology. Well Not all of it. I learned it from the Holy Spirit as he opened the eyes and ears of my heart to the Word of God. The first thing I learned was Eternal election unto Salvation while attending a Non-Calvinist church. I still attend a Non-Calvinist Church and there are some who know what I believe. I never bring it up in church or out of church, unless approached by someone out of church and asked about it. The reason they ask is because there are things I have had to decline to comment on. I don’t know if I am doing the right thing or not, but I do not want to disrupt fellowship and bring a great disturbance to my local church. I have found a church that I may start attending. I am in prayer waiting for the peace of God. Election is made from eternity unto salvation. Chosen to be saved says the word. I know what is said about the word “beginning” and many are mistaking about that word and using it wrongly as they will see if they will do a study on John 1:1, and see that the word beginning is speaking of the eternity of Christ with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Were were chosen before the foundation of the world, not the ambiguous and odd interpretation of Brian Wagner who Sean Cole Refuted and Wagner did not reply or give him a complete exegesis of Ephesians 1 (in context with Greek since Sean and Brian are both Greek Scholars). Still waiting on that Ephesians 1 Biblical complete Exegesis. I still have Dr,. Sean Cole’s rebuttal of Brian Wagner’s understanding of Ephesians 1:4 if anyone is interested in seeing it. I think I will post it since I asked that no one participate in this conversation if they had me blocked and could not directly respond to them.

        The name of John Calvin is frequently associated with the doctrine of predestination. Published in 1552 to counteract the criticisms and contrary views being taught by others, this work shows Calvin rigorously defending his controversial position. Readers will witness Calvin masterfully arguing his points, wrestling with scriptures, and fully engaged in the rough-and-tumble polemical world of sixteenth-century theological debate.

        All John Calvin did was systematize the doctrines of Grace or Reformed Soteriology/ Salvation. He did not invent it, God did.

        Then we have what another Book Brian Wagner says is a lengthy book by John Calvin Called the Secret Providence of God. Well it is shorter than the “the eternal Predestination of God” being only 181 pages. We do not need to exaggerate to defeat doctrines we do not believe are true. It is disingenuous. Speak the truth in love, patience and reverence and in the fear and love of the Lord. The same person said the ESV BIBLE has a Calvinist leaning and Revelation 13:8 is an incorrect translation by the translators and this could be disingenuous. He is documented on Soteriology101 saying this. One thing he does not tell you is that there were many many myriad other translations that translated Revelation 13:8 the same way, before the ESV did. Also in the Greek it is a probable and possibly the right translation. I have and article from Greek Scholars who go into this verse and tell you why this true, I will probably post this also sometime in the future. I will believe the best about my brother and maybe he made a mistake on these issues and just did not do his homework because of his hatred of Calvinism and strong desire to prove it as a false doctrine even though it is on the rise. You cannot thwart God, he will do all his counsel and all He pleases and bring the counsel of man to nothing in its defeat,

        But back to Calvin’s book the “Secret Providence Of God” Only 181 pages. Not a lengthy book. Once again written out of necessity because of Calvin’s enemies who were smearing His reputation in the church and His beliefs of the doctrinal truths of God’s word. Out of commandment to God’s word Calvin in these two short books was defending the faith once delivered to the saints.

        Jude verse 3 – 3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.

        So I stand by my statement of fact, John Calvin wrote very little on Predestination, but what he did write is amazing grace. You know, John Newton, the Slave Trader who was Caption of the Ship who went and kidnapped black men and sold them on the slave market. While reading his bible God brought great guilt of sin and he cried out for mercy and forsook his sinful lifestyle. He wrote the most popular Christian Hymn in Christian History and all Christians sing it and love it and relate intimately to it. Including Wagner and FOH. The Christian Hymn “Amazing Grace” John Newton wrote. John Newton was also a CALVINIST’ Amazing grace is one of the most Calvinistic songs ever wrote and sang somewhere in a local Non-Calvinist Church every Sunday and peace and strange warmness it brings to their hearts as they sing it. Praise to the Glory of God’s grace.

        Thanks for the book recommendation Brian Wagner my friend, just bought it from Amazon for $1.54, after all it is only 188 pages, what can you expect 1000 dollars. 🙂 Like I said before Brian, I mean this playfully as you know (as you insert a little sarcasm in your comments now and then) “welcome to class I am your new teacher” I did not read your full comment on this so I hope I am responding correctly. If not forgive me in Christ as he has forgiven you. But I do think there is pertinent info in this you need to think about and realize.

        It is because of Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God: our righteousness, holiness, and redemption.

        Not because of the almighty powerful sinful wicked idol so-called free-will of the Non-Calvinist that determines his spiritual destiny. Non-Calvinist are deterministic in their faith and belief in the power of their imaginary fiction idol of so-call free-will.

        In Christ Brian you know their is respect and love for you, but I have to call a spade a spade. I will keep things much shorter for now on FOH (I know I have said that before, please forgive me, one verse at a time, expecting some interaction from you, meaning some rebuttal of what I have said and rebuttal of sinners not having innate saving faith, the fact that faith is a gift. I will give you the first verse tomorrow on that subject and respond to something else you have said my friend. Thanks for being friendly FOH and being yourself. I know your personality is speaking it like it is and that is ok, will not be offended my brother, you do your thing and I will do mine. When you are tired and weary of this let me know and I will go in victory. Just kidding, no one every wins. Both sides still think they are right and think the other side is wrong. I am going to challenge you in the future on being a true Calvinist when I know you are on here and you have about 29 mns. You will understand when the time comes my friend.

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      21. FOH,

        John 11:47-48 (ESV)……
        So the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the council and said, “What are we to do? For this man performs many signs. If we let him go on like this, EVERYONE WILL BELIEVE IN HIM, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”

        The Pharisees would have known better had they read their “Institutes of the Christian Religion”.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks Eric.

    A text that makes your point, as well as any that I know of, is Rom 2:14, where Paul acknowledges that Gentiles (by implication unbelievers) can do by nature the things contained in the law, even though they did not have the written laws given to Moses. (They do have the basics of the law written on their hearts.) Note also, that the law is spiritual (Rom 7). Unbelievers can do some right / spiritual things… albeit they cannot be justified by obedience to the law.

    A second text would be in Mt 7, where Jesus acknowledged to his hearers that they knew how to give *good* gifts to their children, even though they were “evil.”

    When we read and/or listen to Calvinists carefully we see that they often ascribe the ability to do moral and spiritual good to unbelievers, who are dead in sin.

    Q: If we were born so dead in sin that we are incapable of humble faith then why would Jesus use the humble faith of children as examples for adults? Mt 18, 19. Jesus showed that there is a capacity for faith in children, in spite of the devastating effects of the fall.

    When I was a Calvinist, I struggled to distinguish between the law of faith and the law of works. Rom 3:27 Most Calvinists struggle to make the distinction. They overstate the meaning of “dead in sin” and understate the power and scope of the common grace of God.

    If you are proud of your faith… you have the wrong kind. God has brilliantly designed the plan of salvation so that the condition of salvation is something we could not possibly be proud of! If we are proud of our faith then it is not contrite faith.

    Thanks again, Soteriology 101, keep up the good work

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I do want to say though, Eric this is a good post there is much I do agree with you on. although I do not think Prevenient grace is taught any where in Holy Scripture if I am understanding you right Sir. I like this comment here from you, “This is the reason one must trust in the righteousness of another, namely Christ Jesus, the only righteous One!” Also this comment here, “This is why the lost need His righteousness applied to them by grace!” We may disagree on the method of how God does this but it is true nonetheless, that is your comment, it is by grace.

    “Romans 3:23-24 -23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24)being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;”

    Justified, Declared righteous before God. Imputed Righteousness through the grace found only in the Lord Jesus Christ. Right on Eric.

    This comment I found a little confusing, but maybe I am understanding you wrong and you can clarify my friend.

    “In Romans 3 Paul teaches that no one is righteous yet in chapter 4 he declares that Abraham was righteous. Which is it?’

    Abraham was declared righteous in the same way as everyone else as he looked at the types and shadows that foretold of the coming Messiah, through the grace and redemption that is in Jesus Christ.

    Speaking of Abraham in Hebrews 11:10

    Hebrews 11:10- 10 for he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. the ultimate glory of the saints in heaven, where God dwells

    What Abraham saw of earthly blessing was but the earnest of some greater gift still future, and yet present through the power of his faith. The shifting tent might be Abraham’s home now, but he waited for that city which should never know change—of which alone it could be said that it hath “the foundations,” and whose Architect and Maker is God.

    Eric’s comment: “Are lost people able to make the right moral choice? Yes, of course, they are.” I agree, good observation Eric as long as we remember there is none righteous, no not not one.

    Eric said: “Some argue that since the lost cannot do what is right, therefore they cannot confess their unrighteousness and put their trust in the righteousness of Christ because that, itself, is the right thing to do.”

    It depends Eric, remember the grace you were talking about earlier.

    Ephesians 2:8-10 – 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

    Salvation is a gift of God it is not of ourself, not of works, so there can be no pride or boasting, We are God’s workmanship, he actually created us for good works pleasing to him that we should bear fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ to the Praise and Glory of God

    Philippians 1:11 – Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.

    Once we are in Christ we can bear fruits of righteousness to the glory and praise of God (that is the difference which I bet I will have to explain) and do good works.

    Sinners are good works before man are unrighteous and as filthy rags before God and at the right time I will explain why.

    Eric said: “PAUL IS NOT SAYING lost people cannot merit their righteousness by the works of the law, therefore, they can’t trust in God either!”

    This is confusing to me my brother Eric, Could clarify and help me to understand, do not mean to offend.

    Eric said: “We must understand that each lost individual, not God, is responsible for how he or she responds to the gospel’s appeal to be reconciled!”

    That is true, there is a command for sinners to repent of their sins and turn to God and believe Jesus to save them from their sins.

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  11. Daily through the Bible, I come to 2 Samuel 13, Amnon and Tamar….. have a look:

    12 “No, my brother!” she cried. “Don’t be foolish! Don’t do this to me! Such wicked things aren’t done in Israel. 13 Where could I go in my shame? And you would be called one of the greatest fools in Israel. Please, just speak to the king about it, and he will let you marry me.”

    We could see this kind of example every day in a thru-the-Bible reading. What do we learn? What is God teaching us with these stories?

    Both are part of the “chosen” people. She says, “Such wicked things aren’t done in Israel.” She knows better. She knows good and evil.

    Calvinists tell us that God “allows” unregenerate man to choose evil (not good, just evil). So is Amnon regenerate and choosing evil? Is Tamar unregenerate and choosing good?

    Calvinists over-think the text (actually read into every passage to make it fit with their world-view).

    It’s as simple as it looks. Every person alive can do good or evil. Not enough good to save himself…. but surely enough to help his kid with his homework, or “help an old lady cross the street.”

    But not for Calvinists. People can only do evil all the time. Since any “doing good” would mean they could…..eh….. do good, and we can’t have that!

    Their whole philosophy is a house of cards built on the faulty idea of Total Depravity. Tumbling down…tumbling down….

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  12. The NT part of my daily reading gets me to John 17.

    Only rookie, newly-minted Calvinists use this chapter to “prove” Calvinism. After a short explanation they back away!!!

    Notice what Jesus says that could be taken out of context (that’s their method of choice) and used to “prove” Calvinism:

    “2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him.”

    “6 ‘I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word.'”

    “9 I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours.”

    NOTE that all these verses sound exactly like the “Father gave me” verse (John 6:44) that Calvinists use. And yet…. and yet…. you dont see them using these (granted, young cage-phase Calvinists will till they are corrected).

    Why? Why not use all these “those you have given me” verses? I mean, they are really good at taking a partial verse and using it ….so here are the words “those you have given me” so it should be a slam dunk, right?

    Read on.

    “12 While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.”

    Rats, rats, rats! Judas is included in the “given to me” ones ….and then it says he “has been lost.” Rats, that won’t work! Oh well…. let’s dont use those “given to me verses” but let’s go find another one and take it out of context….. and use it over and over as a filter for the rest of the Bible.

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  13. Eric my Brother in Christ.
    I am confused and do not understand what is going on. I posted one response not directly at you, but where you posted an article “A Charitable Discourse” I think it was called. I do not remember exactly for sure. But you approved it and posted it. I then posted 2 more there and you have not posted them.

    I then reacted and responded to your new article and it was never posted. I do not know why. Maybe you just have not had time. This I understand. I know in my post I have not misbehaved but I have went out of my way in trying not to offend and behave as you have asked me to. I even said keep on a short leash. I know my post to my knowledge have not been offending and I have not singled out anyone to my knowledge except you in your most recent post. There was a lot that I agreed with you on Eric if you read my post. It can’t have been because they were to long because there were some very long, I mean some very long post from others on Soteriology101 posted in the comment section that you approved. They were all Non-Calvinist. Have you banned me again because I am not a Non-Calvinist? Just asking not accusing. Seeking clarification as to why you will not even respond to a simple email anymore. Do you not like Reformed Believers? Just seeking understanding Eric. I am not a stalker and do not aim to keep emailing you but I do believe you have done me an injustice by not answering the emails I sent you after the John 6 discussion. It is not becoming of you Eric. I quoted you, Dr Flowers and Brian Wagner as the 3 most godly men on Soteriology101. But I will reserve my final judgement and not think you are being biased for now. I will believe the best of you until I know different as to why you post on your articles are not being posted. You said you were giving me a second chance. You allowed one of my comments to go through and then nothing else. Like I said I believe you just have not had time. I will no longer email you as I do not want you to think I am seeking your friendship or I am a stalker or something like that. I think your last article was very good for the most part. I only asked clarification on some of it.

    Thanks Eric.

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  14. Eric my Brother in Christ.
    I am confused and do not understand what is going on. I posted one response not directly at you, but where you posted an article “A Charitable Discourse” I think it was called. I do not remember exactly for sure. But you approved it and posted it. I then posted 2 more there and you have not posted them.

    I then reacted and responded to your new article and it was never posted. I do not know why. Maybe you just have not had time. This I understand. I know in my post I have not misbehaved but I have went out of my way in trying not to offend and behave as you have asked me to. I even said keep on a short leash. I know my post to my knowledge have not been offending and I have not singled out anyone to my knowledge except you in your most recent post. There was a lot that I agreed with you on Eric if you read my post. It can’t have been because they were to long because there were some very long, I mean some very long post from others on Soteriology101 posted in the comment section that you approved. They were all Non-Calvinist. Have you banned me again because I am not a Non-Calvinist? Just asking not accusing. Seeking clarification as to why you will not even respond to a simple email anymore. Do you not like Reformed Believers? Just seeking understanding Eric. I am not a stalker and do not aim to keep emailing you but I do believe you have done me an injustice by not answering the emails I sent you after the John 6 discussion. It is not becoming of you Eric. I quoted you, Dr Flowers and Brian Wagner as the 3 most godly men on Soteriology101. But I will reserve my final judgement and not think you are being biased for now. I will believe the best of you until I know different as to why you post on your articles are not being posted. You said you were giving me a second chance. You allowed one of my comments to go through and then nothing else. Like I said I believe you just have not had time. I will no longer email you as I do not want you to think I am seeking your friendship or I am a stalker or something like that. I think your last article was very good for the most part. I only asked clarification on some of it.

    Thanks Eric.

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    1. Kevin, for some reason, even though I have unblocked you from the site WordPress shoves everyone one of your comments into the trash folder and I have to pull them out. I apologize that sometimes it takes me a day or two to do so.

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      1. ok Eric,
        Now I understand, and like I said I believe the best in my brothers in Christ until I know the difference. You have shown yourself to be one of true Character in Christ that I can trust and for that I thank you for. I know I am on a short leash and I want to be and I will with the help of Christ cannot do anything not to let you down.

        Like

  15. Daily reading….2 Samuel 14

    Joab is the rascal in charge of Kind David’s army.

    14:1 “Joab realized how much the king longed to see Absalom. 2 So he sent for a woman from Tekoa who had a reputation for great wisdom. He said to her, “Pretend you are in mourning;”

    So much human thinking, planning, conniving, maneuvering.

    Joab tricks (deceives) David into seeing Absalom. They even swear by the Lord God in the process. No mention whether God is for or against this plan. No mention of God at all in the book of Esther (That’s why Luther disliked the book and Calvin never preached or commentated on it!!). Just all about men and women and the choices they make.

    Later (14:22) “Joab bowed with his face to the ground in deep respect and said, ‘At last I know that I have gained your approval, my lord the king, for you have granted me this request!'”

    What is the point of all these stories? Oh yes…. the point is that everything has been immutably planned /ordained/ decreed/ willed by God since before time. If that’s true what do we learn? And can we even learn….I mean everything is already planned right?

    Later (15:6) “Absalom did this with everyone who came to the king for judgment, and so he stole the hearts of all the people of Israel.”

    Stole their hearts? Can he do that? You mean God made him deceive everyone so he could steal the hearts of the people away from God’s anointed David, right? Well, it doesnt say that….but it must be true since “we know” …….

    Calvinism renders meaningless so much of the Bible.

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  16. My daily reading takes me to John 18.

    18:37, Jesus responded, “You say I am a king. Actually, I was born and came into the world to testify to the truth. All who love the truth recognize that what I say is true.”

    The people who loved the truth —before Christ came— are the ones who recognized it when they saw it.

    Maybe that is like Simeon in Luke 2:25:

    Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout.

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  17. The reading goes into John 19.

    19:11 Then Jesus said, “You would have no power over me at all unless it were given to you from above. So the one who handed me over to you has the greater sin.”

    Here Christ says that Pilate has the power cuz God gave it to him. Gave him the power…. but did not dictate his every move.

    Then Christ says ….. “So the one who handed me over to you has the greater sin.”

    Who is Christ referring to?

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  18. Daily reading had Psalm 119 also. Hard to see determinism and Calvinism here. Of course one can always say “oh we know the scripture does not mean that…”

    119: 118 But you have rejected all who stray from your decrees.
    They are only fooling themselves. [they stray; God rejects. Not God rejects first]

    121 Don’t leave me to the mercy of my enemies,
    for I have done what is just and right. [I have done what is right]

    122 Please guarantee a blessing for me.
    Don’t let the arrogant oppress me! [Me. me. me!]

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  19. Romans 8:28-30 (NKJV)…
    And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

    Clare (hope you are still “watching”),

    Sorry for the delay to your original post/comment dated 5/26/18.

    For the most part, from Romans 2:17 thru Romans 11:12, Paul is addressing the Jews (while there is certainly some application for us as well, but he is speaking directly to the Jews).

    Romans 2:17 (NIV)…
    Now you, if you call yourself a Jew; if you rely on the law and boast in God….

    Romans 3:1 (NIV)….
    What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew, or what value is there in circumcision?

    Romans 3:9a (NKJV)….
    What then? Are we (Jews) better than they (Gentiles)?

    Romans 4:1 (NIV)….
    What then shall we (the Jews) say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh (physical descendants), discovered in this matter?

    Romans 7:1 (NIV)….
    Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law (who had the written code? Who knew the Law forwards and backwards? The Jews)—that the law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives?

    So I believe that Romans 8:28-33 is talking about the nation of Israel (or at least the faithful Jews making up the 12 tribes). The overwhelming use of “the elect” in scripture points to that tiny nation; regardless of faith or not (Isaiah 45:4, 2 Timothy 2:10). It was Israel who was ‘called according to His purpose” (v 28). This “calling” of Israel for “His purpose” included, but not limited to, being a blessing to the nations (Genesis 12:3 and Genesis 22:18), a witness to the Gentile nations (Isaiah 43:10), and a light to the world (Isaiah 60:2-3). It was Israel that God “foreknew” (v 29; and reiterated clearly in Romans 11:2). It was Israel that was “predestined to be conformed to the image of the Son” (v 29; remember the imaginary of the tabernacle in the wilderness?) All of this was in order of preparing Israel for the coming of their Messiah (v 29); who would happen also to be the Savior of the world (John 4:42, 1 John 4:14).

    Salvation is of the Jews (John 4:22)

    Romans 9 is all about the election (and privileges) of the Jews (v 4) and the coming of the Messiah (v 5). “The promise” for the children (12 tribes of Israel) is referring to the Abrahamic covenant regarding a land, a people, and a government (King and Kingdom). So it was Isaac (according to the promise). Not Ishmael (according to the flesh; Abraham’s attempt to fulfill God’s promise via Hagar). It was Jacob. Not Esau. And it was Judah (the Southern Kingdom). Not Israel (the Northern Kingdom).

    Genesis 49:10 (NKJV)….
    The scepter shall not depart from Judah

    Isaiah 65:9 (NKJV)….
    I will bring forth descendants from Jacob, And from Judah an heir of My mountains; My elect shall inherit it, And My servants shall dwell there.

    Hope this helps.

    Blessings.

    Like

    1. Hi Phillip,

      Thanks for replying 🙂
      SO SORRY FOR THE LENGTH TO YOU OR OTHER READERS….please bear with me..

      I totally agree with you that Romans speaking more specifically to the Jews as per the verses you pointed out. Chapter 8 is a follow on from Chapter 7 where he says in verse1 I speak to them that are under the law… and I consider Chapter8 part of his flow from 7 explaining that the Law (which represents those that are of the Flesh, since the law of sin and death in their members is working through the Law to appoint them to death) 7:7-25.
      Which leads to “therefore there is no condemnation to those in Christ Jesus….” in opposition to the Jews who are in the Flesh (ie trying to earn salvation through the Law).

      I’ve come to believe that Paul is encouraging the Jewish believers, not to bow to the persecution or pressure from the Law salvation seeking Jews . And encouraging them that they (the believing Faith/Spirit in dwelt and lead Jews) are actually the Sons of God 8:14-17
      And their present sufferings 8vs17 (which is related to that persecution…11vs28) is not to be compared to future glorification, if they suffer with Christ vs 17(b)

      So that leads to vs28 onwards. Ie that’s the backdrop.
      Then…30 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

      Now because-of the “those that love God” this is referring to the OT Jewish Believers.
      So these must be the specific set of people Paul is referring to (as they are the sub group out of Israel who went on to be Justified, and Glorified. ) eg Elijah mentioned in Chp11 and for instance the list of Jewish Believers listed in Hebrew 11.(Faith Believers)

      So Paul is encouraging the current Jewish Believers that just as God came through for them, they can have that assurance that they also will go through the same process and receive the same End as the OT believers did.

      Leading to …who can bring a charge against Gods Elect…. who are currently The Elect….as oppose the Unbelieving Jews ( although God hasn’t forsaken them ..ie the U-Js).

      Then Paul says in Romans…
      in vs3 For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh:
      ……So he is on the topic of Salvation.

      And his heaviness is particular to Isreal as a whole which currently is largely U-Js…whom all the privileges as you listed pertains too.
      So he goes to assure that…vs 6

      *Not as though the word of God(all the privileges etc you listed) hath taken none effect* . For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:

      FROM HERE:.. it seems to me that he is explaining that God’s word which seems to have taken no effect… only looks that way because they have assumed that God Word was for all of Isreal, by name/lineage etc…. but actually Gods Word is for His Children.. which links back to the “Forknown” of God in Chapter 8. This group are the “those whom love God”… which one can only become if one comes by Faith. (as has always been the case Romans 1: 17For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.)

      NEITHER, BECAUSE THEY ARE the SEED of Abraham, ARE THEY ALL CHILDREN: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
      8That is, THEY WHICH ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE FLESH, these ARE NOT THE CHILDREN OF GOD: but the CHILDREN OF THE the PROMISE are COUNTED for the seed.

      So only the Children of Promise are counted as seed. Which includes the current Jewish believers… because they have believed in a promise (just like Abraham believed in a promise) and righteousness was imputed becoming a child of God. So these current believers also believed in the promise (found in messiah Jesus) and they are also counted as seed.(and therefore will inherit ‘The Word of God’)
      To inherit one needs to be saved…. which is why Paul is in sorrow…. they are not saved, he is even willing to be accursed (wow!) for thier sakes… if that could cause them to obtain SALVATION, making them a child of God… Leading them to be eligible for all the inheritance that God had in store for The Elect (The Jews… by Faith and not just ethnicity/birth/lineage)

      Same as vs 11(For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the PURPOSE OF GOD ACCORDING TO ELECTION might stand, NOT OF WORKS, but of him that calleth;)
      ……Paul showing them that God has always caused His purposes to stand, through the “System of Election” rather than “Works”

      ……And He prefers the System of “Mercy” VS16

      15For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
      16So THEN IT IS NOT OF HIM THAT willeth, nor of him that runneth, BUT OF GOD THAT SHEWETH MERCY.

      And the rest of the verses following Paul uses to show that point. Pharaoh could have received God’s mercy …. but fail short of that(through his own choice), so became a vessel hardened and of Wrath…. which God can also choose to do! (HE IS GOD)…is Paul’s point to the question , is their unrighteouness with God?…. No! He says….God can choose to use a system of Election by Faith instead of Works, and Election by Mercy (which on our part we come into when we come to God by Faith in His promise of salvation, provided by Him)….He Is God.
      He moves in Chapter 10 etc to further explain, that God comes through for Isreal as whole…as “Isreal will be saved”… since He worked out His plan which will lead to them beoming Jealous and coming to Him by Faith… and His Purpose according to Mercy will come to pass. (On the bigger scale than just the current “remant” of believIng Jews).

      SORRY FOR THE LENGTH…. but I said all that just to make my original point that… the meaning of Called in Romans 8:30…..means Called “Children of God”…..
      30Moreover whom he did predestinate (to be conformed into Christ image):
      ( Isreal yes, but only Believers in specific because election is not by works but by “Him that calls” ie Him that elects out OF HIS OWN KINDNESS/ GRACE ),
      them he also called: (ie named them ie these Isreal believers “Children of God”) …
      and whom he called, (“Children of God”)
      them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

      as opposed to
      30Moreover whom he did predestinate (to be conformed into Christ image):them he also called:( Called to be Saved” ie the call to get saved. Or “called/invited to be elected)and whom he called, (“to be Saved or Elected”)
      them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
      …….This cannot be what Paul meant. Especially in light of the fact that NOT EVERYONE WHO IS CALLED TO BE SAVED…ie hears the gospel message is “Justified”.
      Only those who are His Children. (ie those that love Him, ie those He did “Foreknow” (past tense OT Jewish Believers) “knows” relationally in past as Dr Flowers explained.

      But for the Roman Jewish Believers… that would apply to them as those God “Knows”, they were currently justified…. and awaiting to be glorified.

      I think that yes, although that chapter is referring to Isreal and in specific Isreal believers of old. It can also apply to us, since the whole reason Paul wrote it was to encourage those whom love God and whom He Knows relationally…either in the past did “forKNOW” or us now that love Him and therefore are currently KNOWN by Him. And Justified because We have become grafted into that Elect and therefore will also have the promised end of GLORIFIED… as God has shown Himself faithful to do by the example of OT post glorified Jewish Believers. Whom Paul was using to encourage those current pre glorified , currently (in Paul’s time) justified Jewish Believers.

      So that encouragement now applies to us, now, The Elect in Christ, especially for us to remember when we go through sufferings for His names sake.

      Do you or other Non Calvinist think this is not an accurate understanding and if not why?

      Rgs In Christ
      Clare

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Clare,

        Wow. A bunch there.

        First, I read the first several chapters of Romans somewhat differently than others. To be completely honest, I haven’t come close to working out all the kinks as yet, so I want you to know that this is just my opinion (like everyone else commenting here) and should be considered as such.

        In short, I believe from Romans 2:17 thru Romans 10 Paul is speaking directly to the Jews (albeit believing Jews for the most part). Now while there is certainly some application for us (which makes it easy and tempting to get pulled in), Paul’s words were/are intended for his Jewish audience; those who both knew the Law (Romans 7:1) and were actual physical descendants of Abraham (Romans 4:1).

        I can certainly see Romans 8:28-30 referring to OT Jewish believers who were kept in Abraham’s bosom and were later raised with Christ to glorification (but I am not opposed to this somehow referring to the nation of Israel). But, regardless, no one prior to the cross was justified, nor glorified, until His blood was spilt at Calvary and the Lord led those captives to heaven. That said, they are God’s elect (His chosen ones) because they are Jews/Israelites, regardless if they believe or not (1 Chronicles 16:13; Psalm 105:6, 2 Timothy 2:10). In Romans 8:36, just 3 short verses later, Paul quotes from Psalm 44. There are no Gentiles in this group.

        Romans 9, 10, 11 are all about God’s promises/covenants (Romans 9:4) to the nation of Israel; from its birth (Romans 9:8) to its restoration of the two houses of Israel and Judah (Romans 11:26) which is heavily prophesied in the OT and will be fulfilled in the future. When Paul uses the word “Israel” he is, for the most part, referring to the House of Israel, a separate and distinct nation/kingdom from the House of Judah. Paul’s references to Jeremiah, Isaiah and Hosea support this.

        Now regarding Romans 11 and the olive tree. Abraham, the father of that nation, is the root. The natural branches (the physical offspring of Abraham) are made up of the 12 tribes, or the house of Jacob, His chosen ones. As Gentiles, we get grafted in, but we never become the natural branches. Just as the natural branches who are cut off never become un-natural (non-elect), the Gentile (the non-elect) who get grafted in never become the natural branches (His elect). Everything the Gentiles get is because of the promises He made with His elect people (the nation of Israel), which is why Paul reminds us not to think too highly of ourselves….

        Romans 11:25 (NKJV)….
        For I do not desire, brethren (Gentiles in this context), that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part (partially, NOT permanently) has happened to Israel (the House of Israel/the Northern Kingdom who was divorced and scattered among the Gentiles) until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.

        Romans 11:26-27 (NKJV)…
        And so all Israel (both the House of Israel and the House of Judah) will be saved, as it is written: “The Deliverer will come out of Zion (Jerusalem, Judah/the Southern Kingdom, the nation of Israel), And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob (the 12 tribes); For this is My (new) covenant with them, When I take away their sins.”

        Ever-learning.

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      2. Clare,

        “So that encouragement now applies to us, now, The Elect in Christ, especially for us to remember when we go through sufferings for His names sake.”

        Again, I differ from my brothers here regarding this.

        I believe the children of Jacob are His chosen ones (1 Chronicles 16:13, Psalm 105:6). Israel, My Elect (Isaiah 45:4). The church is His body (Ephesians 5:23, Colossians 1:18, Colossians 1:24). Now, since Jews/Israelites are God’s elect, His chosen ones, does that mean they can’t belong to His body? Of course not. The early church was probably made up mostly of Jews. They were the first to believe in Christ (Ephesians 1:12). First to the Jew, then to the Gentile (Romans 1:16). James referred to them as a kind of “firstfruits” (James 1:18). Peter even referred to them as “overseers” (1 Peter 5:2).

        As I have stated before, this notion, in my opinion (though I could be wrong), of “those in Him become elect” was fabricated by Jacob Arminius in a desperate attempt to distance himself from the Calvinistic teaching of unconditional election (to salvation). These are by far the two mostly widely taught (and accepted) beliefs regarding election. I reject both. I believe from beginning to end, the nation of Israel, the children of Jacob/Israel, is/are God’s elect. Period. We see this in the OT. During Christ’s earthly ministry. During Paul’s ministry. And during the end of days.

        Revelation 21:9-14 (NKJV)…..
        Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. Also she had a great and high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates, and names written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: three gates on the east, three gates on the north, three gates on the south, and three gates on the west. Now the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

        Hallelujah!

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    2. Finally my brother in Christ Philip,
      I find a “reply” location to respond to you, speaking the truth in love my friend. It is your response and refutation to me above. You refuted me with one verse and without saying it, it was like you said, “well that settles it, the Calvinist did not know what he was talking about:” I put him on the run. Brother I do not mean to offend but “THe Holy Doctrine of Justification” is not formed and created on the weight of one verse. Maybe I was a little too superficial myself, But I will try to correct that here. Now one thing I am not going to do is give you all the answers. I have noticed this thing of giving “one verse” and thinking well “that settles it” and thinking one has triumphed.

      Well, let’s look back and see what you did say.

      You said, and I am paraphrasing, “does not need, my help.”

      Actually, FOH did need help, he was in over his head, but the only thing you failed to provide any with you one-string banjo verse. That is why I was curious Brian Wanger who is an expert and gifted in God’s word liked and approved in what you wrote. He knows we do not build doctrines on the weight of one verse. They can lend support and information in and of themselves. But a Doctrine like the one of Justification in Jesus Christ is found in a Chapter or many chapters of the Bible or a whole book of the Bible and passages scattered throughout the Bible. You should feel ashamed of Philip. You did not show due diligence in studying and rightly dividing the word of truth.

      2 Timothy 2:15 Study and do your best to present yourself to God approved, a workman [tested by trial] who has no reason to be ashamed, accurately handling and skillfully teaching the word of truth.

      I repeat what you said in your first in your response once again. That “FOH did not need your help”

      FOH did need help and the help he needed you failed to provide. I will use a metaphor as to what you did that I have used before my brother Philip. You were like a Dark threatening thunderstorm of the likes we have never seen. Promising, heavy rain that would cause flooding with the consequences of terrible damage. Promise strong winds of proportions that there would be houses destroyed and much damage to people’s property. Lightening and thundering like we have never seen and heard. The weather forecaster has even warned everyone to get in the basement or safest area of your house because this baby is going to give birth to several tornadoes.

      But just like you Philip, the Scary, threatening promising thunderstorm passed over without even a drop or trickle of rain.

      Not only does my brother in Christ FOH need help Philp but brother without offending you in love, you do too. Yes I know I came across a little strong there. But for some people, you have to address them in different ways. After all that I had written to FOH you still did not understand I had to shake you and try and wake you up.

      You sound as if there are two ways of being justified before God. The Abraham was justified before God and it was counted to him for righteousness and being saved by grace through faith in Christ who justifies (declares legally) the ungodly There is and always has been one way to justify the ungodly wicked sinners before a just and Holy God. Thought the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

      I am going to help you with the first half and then I am going to let you do the last part on your own. I will give you a hint and you find it easy and that will settle it.

      Galatians 3:6-22 New International Version (NIV)
      6 So also Abraham “believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”[a]

      7 Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham.

      8 Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.”[b]

      9 So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.

      10 For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.”[c]

      11 Clearly, no one who relies on the law is justified before God, because “the righteous will live by faith.”[d]

      12 The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, it says, “The person who does these things will live by them.”[e]

      13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a pole.”[f]

      14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

      One thing you cannot do here Phillip is jerk Abraham out of his immediate context and surrounding context in Galatians 36-22. It is a sin and a violation of Bible exegesis

      Look at verse 8 Philip, It says, “.Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham” You cannot deny the gospel through which Christ justifies the ungodly and declares them righteous was declared IN ADVANCE TO ABRAHAM.

      Now let’s look at another passage of Holy Scripture Philip:

      Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,

      22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all [f]and on all who believe. For there is no difference;

      23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

      24 being justified [g]freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

      25 whom God set forth as an [h]propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed,

      26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

      Verse 23 is all so very interesting that I say he that ears to hear and eyes to see let him hear and see what the Spirit of the Lord is showing us in the Word of and Speaking to us about being justified by grace through faith in Christ.

      It says something profound Philip, this, “THAT THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD APART FROM THE LAW IS REVEALED THROUGH THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS. Remember Philip, Those Paul was talking to did not have completed the New Testament like we did. That is why the LAW AND THE PROPHETS OF THE OLD TESTAMENT TESTIFIED OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD APART FROM WORKS.

      That so reminds me of a favorite verse of mine. “We have been saved by grace through faith, and that not of ourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast.

      But back to Romans 3. Philip, what did the Law and the Prophets reveal and testify about the righteousness apart from works in the Old Testament? The very next verse tells us, Philip.

      Look at verse 22. “even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ to all and on all who believe, for There is no difference.”

      I think believing Abraham who had the Gospel revealed and preached to him in advance falls into the category.

      There is only one way for Philip to be justified before God and to be declared righteous. That is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ just as the Father of Faith Abraham did. As we look backward in faith to the cross as what Christ accomplished and believe it is true when he said those words, “it is finished” Abraham looked forward towards in faith and through the eyes of faith seen the same thing.

      And yes Philip, not only did Abraham have the Gospel revealed to him, it was Actually preached to him by God!! That is the part I was going to have your search on your own. But I will be gracious and show you the verse myself.

      We actually already seen it when it was translated into English by the NIV as “revealed the Gospel” which is the same thing but there is a better translation that says “preach or proclaim/

      Galatians 3:8 – And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.”

      If you look closely Philip, you will see within this verse it says that…..God preached the Gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “in you, all nations shall be blessed.

      Now, brother, will you receive the engrafted Word of God’s grace will humility or continue to be self-deceived. In Christ and speaking the truth in love I beseech you that this is not a competition about who is right, the Calvinist or the Non-Calvinist. It is about having the Holy truth of God in your inward heart and loving the Lord Jesus Christ enough to say I was wrong. Just as I did with Eric when he corrected me twice in a lively debate we had on John 8

      This has always been a verse that gives great comfort and joy to Philip. I pray now brother it will you also:

      Romans 3:24 and are being justified [declared free of the guilt of sin, made acceptable to God, and granted eternal life] as a gift by His [precious, undeserved] [c]grace, through the redemption [the payment for our sin] which is [provided] in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God displayed publicly [before the eyes of the world] as a [life-giving] [d]sacrifice of atonement and reconciliation (propitiation) by His blood [to be received] through faith.

      : Romans 3:24 being justified [a]freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

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  20. Reading through the Bible, and today gives me Acts 8:14-40.

    14 When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that the people of Samaria had accepted God’s message, they sent Peter and John there.

    ——The Scripture so often uses “accepted” the Word of God…making it sound like people have something to do with “accepting.” But the main point today is further down….

    “The eunuch had gone to Jerusalem to worship….

    30 Philip ran over and heard the man reading from the prophet Isaiah. Philip asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”

    31 The man replied, “How can I, unless someone instructs me?” And he urged Philip to come up into the carriage and sit with him.

    32 The passage of Scripture he had been reading was this:

    “He was led like a sheep to the slaughter.
    And as a lamb is silent before the shearers,
    he did not open his mouth.
    33 He was humiliated and received no justice.
    Who can speak of his descendants?
    For his life was taken from the earth.”

    34 The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, was the prophet talking about himself or someone else?” 35 So beginning with this same Scripture, Philip told him the Good News about Jesus.

    36 …..As they rode along, they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “Look! There’s some water! Why can’t I be baptized?” 38 He ordered the carriage to stop, and they went down into the water, and Philip baptized him.”

    ——–
    A. This man was a worshiper of God. Made a special trip to worship the God of Israel (as known at that time). (giving us the impression that he was not “too dead” to look for God, just like Lydia, seeking).

    B. The man was reading Scripture but felt he needed someone to instruct him from Isaiah. Notice that the Scripture in no way implies that this is a “God-hater” who needs special revelation, giving-of-faith. Just needed a person to help him understand Isaiah. To “persuade him” as Paul puts it.

    C. Notice even the OT picture of Christ is not one of a deterministic despot, but one of a humble servant.

    D. Notice that the “too-dead” “God-hater” is asking questions? ….and that it simple says that Philip told him the Good News? No mention of any special giving of faith (oh, that’s right, there is never a mention of that in Scripture—not one time).

    E. So the worshiper of God, reading Scripture, hears the Good News and asks immediately to be baptized. Yes! Amen! Did God intervene miraculously by having Philip on the spot and moving him on from there? Yes! But the conversation and flow of the conversion are totally natural, human, and possible any time. Other times, Paul is in situations where the people do not receive his explanation.

    God brought a messenger (Philip) to a seeker (Ethiopian) so he could hear/understand the Good News. The way we all should live.

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  21. Today’s reading in the Proverbs part… 17:2-3

    3 Fire tests the purity of silver and gold,
    but the Lord tests the heart.

    Let’s see how the hard-to-understand Calvinist ESV puts it…

    3 The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold,
    and the Lord tests hearts.(ESV)

    —————–
    Looks like no matter where you look you have “the Lord test hearts.”

    Why?

    Doesnt He know?

    I thought Calvinists say that He puts all things in our hearts? Why waste ink saying He “tests our hearts”?

    Tests? How?

    Again, Determinism renders the Scripture meaningless.

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  22. I know I gave my farewell address to Eric, but I wanted to share something with my friends, my very brothers in Christ that is absolutely irrelevant to Calvinism and Non-Calvinism. Something I think we forget. The very Love of God, the Grace of Christ, and that Sweet Precious Communion of the Holy Spirit in our times or Prayer, reading the Bible and Bible Study. I heard this 5 year old girl sing this song on Youtube and it just caused this strange warmness in my heart and then it began to burn within me so that I was filled with the Spirit. I began praying and seeking God. Fellowshipping and enjoying that Sweet Precious Communion with God the Holy Spirit. Thank you Jesus my Lord for those Words you said on that Holy Cross. “It Is Finished. Not sure if it is appropriate here to share but I hopw Eric and Dr. Flowers will show me some grace, for this is about our mutual salvation that comes from the God of heaven, the very God of our Salation in Christ Jesus

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  23. CALVINISM ASSERTS CERTAIN TYPES OF FREEDOM AND CHOICE THAT ARE ILLUSIONS

    Let [P] = All human sinful thoughts, desires, and choices, which come to pass – it being the case that Calvin’s god immutably decrees and renders certain they come to pass. And he does so millennia before humans exist.

    It follows from this, that since [P] and only [P] are immutably decreed and rendered certain to exist, that Calvin’s god has made nothing other than [P] accessible to humans. And Calvin’s god gives humans no freedom outside of [P].

    And it is also obvious that no human being has (or ever had) any choice about whether [P].
    And since [P] and only [P] is rendered certain to exist, then [NOT P] (will not and cannot) exist.

    And since it is impossible to choose something that does not exist – in this case [NOT P].
    It then follows that humans (will not and cannot) have a REAL choice between [P] and [NOT P], since one of these does not exist for humans to choose.

    Now the Calvinist who is not comfortable with this situation – will want to insist that humans have a choice between [P] and [NOT P] *AS-IF* in their system [NOT P] exists for humans to choose – even though it is the case that in their system only [P] can exist.

    Therefore, we can see there are certain types of freedom and choice within Calvinism that are illusions.

    Calvinists, in a world of double-think, try to make their doctrine seem like common sense, by crafting semantic illusions.
    They do this by carefully crafting language designed to make certain types of freedom and choices appear to exist – which Calvin’s god in fact does not allow to exist.

    We call this Calvinism’s *AS-IF* thinking. Their minds are conditioned to think and speak about things that do not exist *AS-IF* they do.

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  24. Daily reading gets me to 1 Kings 14-15.

    “14:7 Give your husband, Jeroboam, this message from the Lord, the God of Israel: ‘I promoted you from the ranks of the common people and made you ruler over my people Israel. 8 I ripped the kingdom away from the family of David and gave it to you. But you have not been like my servant David, who obeyed my commands and followed me with all his heart and always did whatever I wanted. 9 You have done more evil than all who lived before you. You have made other gods for yourself and have made me furious with your gold calves. And since you have turned your back on me, 10 I will bring disaster on your dynasty…..’”

    12 Then Ahijah said to Jeroboam’s wife, “Go on home, and when you enter the city, the child will die. 13 All Israel will mourn for him and bury him. He is the only member of your family who will have a proper burial, for this child is the only good thing that the Lord, the God of Israel, sees in the entire family of Jeroboam.”

    ————————
    There is just no way to justify this passage (and thousands like it) with determinism!

    A. This is the (Sovereign) LORD (all caps meaning Yaweh) speaking. What He says will help us understand Him.

    B. He tells Jeroboam that He promoted him and ripped it from David (due to Solomon’s unfaithfulness) but, alas, Jerry didn’t do what God wanted either!

    C. He compares him to David who “did whatever I wanted” —-meaning that others can do what God does not want. He does not always get what He wants.

    D. Jerry made God “furious” with his gold calves. Now how can that be decreed/willed/ wanted/ ordained by God? That is some kind of schizophrenic situation —-God chooses a man to replace David, makes him build a golden calf (since He ordains all actions before time) and then gets “furious” at him for doing it. God’s chosen person no less!

    E. The Sovereign Creator says, “since you have….. I will now do….” So much reaction from God to man! I guess that kills (for the zillionth time!) the Calvinist idea “God acts and never reacts.”

    F. The Sovereign Lord says, “this child is the only good thing that the Lord, the God of Israel, sees…” So the child was good? Not a God-hater, do-no-good-er?

    Determinism just does not hold up in the light of ALL of Scripture.

    Ps….. you can make all this go away with the wave of the wand and the Calvinist interpretation of Eph 1:11.

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  25. Daily reading 1 Kings 15. Abiham.

    3 He committed the same sins as his father before him, and he was not faithful to the Lord his God, as his ancestor David had been. 4 But for David’s sake, the Lord his God allowed his descendants to continue ruling, shining like a lamp, and he gave Abijam a son to rule after him in Jerusalem. 5 For David had done what was pleasing in the Lord’s sight and had obeyed the Lord’s commands throughout his life, except in the affair concerning Uriah the Hittite.

    ————-
    A. “Not faithful to the Lord” (yet doing what God decreed he would do right?).

    B. “For David’s sake.” Why so many times do we see these kinds of phrases? I thought it was man who did things for God’s sake only (for Calvinism)? This is a very “man-centered” idea. How does Calvinism explain these constant “man-centered” ideas?

    C. David had obeyed the Lord’s commands through his life…. well except for Uriah (but then again….God decreed that too— so we’re all good).

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  26. NT portion is Acts 10

    10 In Caesarea there lived a Roman army officer[a] named Cornelius, who was a captain of the Italian Regiment. 2 He was a devout, God-fearing man, as was everyone in his household. He gave generously to the poor and prayed regularly to God.

    ———————
    Could his goodness save him? Nope. Does the Bible say he was a devout, God-fearing (not God-hating) man? Yep.

    No response whatsoever from Calvinism, cuz for their system to work all people have to be God-haters, until they are regenerated. But no, we have plenty of examples of people that the Bible calls “good” or devout (Cornelius, Lydia, Zechariah and Elizabeth).

    So much for the everyone-hates-God idea.

    Man-made philosophy cooked up to make Calvinism fit.

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  27. Further down Acts 10
    And the angel replied, “Your prayers and gifts to the poor have been received by God as an offering!
    ————

    Remember that is God saying this to non-Jewish, unregenerate, pre-Gospel Cornelius.

    I thought Calvinists said that all men are God-haters prior to regeneration, who can only do evil, and all godly things are foolishness to them?

    It looks like God gives us these great Bible stories to purposely refute that idea!

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  28. I answered a lot of these questions but they were not counted worthy as being posted on here. I am sure Eric had his reasons and I submit to his Authority and Administration. Ultimately he would have not this authority to withhold unless given by God who gave Jesus all authority in heaven and in earth. I only remind Eric my Brother in Christ with a gentle urging to search your heart when you choose not to post a Calvinist post as to what your reasons and motives are my friend. As there is no sinful partially with God there should be none with us. Many Non-Calvinist above have written long post and even one apologized for it. But I believe the best about you brother until I know different and I really mean that. God bless and may the Grace of Christ be with you always.

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  29. Do the angels in heaven have free-will such as humanity doe?. That is to accept and reject. To approve and to disapprove. The Non-Calvinist asserts, that with the ability and power of his mystical fabricated idol of free-will, he exercises faith in Christ, but could have done the opposite and disbelieved and rejected Christ. So can the remaining angels who did not fall with Lucifer in Heaven have free will and reject the God of Heaven and rebel against him? Why not? Lucifer and a 3rd of the angels did. That is with a will that once followed in complete submission and worship before they did changed, their wills were mutable and they rejected God. So could this rebellion not happen again? Or is there something different about the remaining angels and if so what is it? Curious to here some Non-Calvinist philosophical replies. Don’t be shy, you guys are philosophoical about everything else. Waiting with eager curiosity.

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  30. Curious also to hear how many Non-Calvinist would agree with this definiion of “free-will”
    “Free-will” is the “power” of the “human -will” by which a man (may apply) himself to those things that “lead to eternal life.” (or turn away from the same). Once again waiting for some feedback with eager anticipation. God bless my brothers in Christ. Have a good Lord’s Day and be blessed in the House of God tomorrow in worshipping the one True God of Heaven and our Salvation.

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  31. Soteriology101 The Pelagian Heresy being Espoused on Dr. Flowers Site by His Followers, I believe in ignorance though. They have gone so far to the left extremism to disprove Calvinism they are now ignorantly talking Pelagianism

    This is the name of the post my friend and brother in Christ Eric did not post. Because of his own determination, good pleasure and reasons known only to himself. Once again I respect Eric’s authority here and I submit to it, I have to or be banned. lol 🙂 Eric is a good man. The debate we had he treated me very fairly and when he corrected me twice he did not rub it in my face and that really made me change my mind about him.

    But I would ask that I could post the link to my site here of that article/long comment for other to read. I have used grammarly to clean it up and it is very readable as FOH as shown me that my writing skills are terrible and rightly so.

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    1. Kevin, I did not approve the link to your blog articles because you are not linking them correctly. The links did not work as you are not linking the public version. You are linking the internal URL that only you have access to. You must visit the public version of your site and then link that address and I’ll be happy to approve it.

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      1. Eric,
        My Brother in Christ, not sure exactly what you mean., but I wrote my comments directly under the article you wrote. Then I would copy the comment before I would hit the send button and it would show up under everyone else’s comments unto I left the your comment under “Reader” There have been a couple that I have posted there in the same place, such as the “video of the little girl singing” that you did approve> Once I hit send I would copy the messages to my own site so I would not lose them in case you did not post them. Is there something I am doing wrong? I always post it under your article which has about 145 to 147 comments now I believe before I post it to my own wordpress site. Then I post it to my own wordpress site for safe-keeping. But I do see it posted under the article you wrote and under everyone’s comments after I hit the send button. Only when I go back it is gone. So was the “little girl in the video singing” I guess until you approved it. But I did not save that to my own WordPress site. Do you mean I must got to Soteriology101 and post from there? If so that is what I will do. Yes I am truly a beginner. Thanks Eric for the help. I need all I can get.

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      2. Kevin, when it comes to your comments, you are not doing anything wrong. You’re typing in the comments just as you should. But for some reason, WordPress is sending them into the “trash” folder instead of allowing them to immediately post. I’m sure it is because you are previously blocked but since I unblocked you it should post normally and it’s not. I don’t see a way to fix it so I just have to approve them when I see them.

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      3. Remember Eric if this is just too much work brother just tell me, I will not be offended and will not post here anymore. Sounds like extra needless work for you Sir.

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  32. The link I mentioned to the article/long comment in my last article down below:

    https://wordpress.com/post/justintime441.wordpress.com/2180

    I am also going to tackle this “Cornelius” issue. The Non-Calvinist put the scriptures against each other. There are many, I say many passages that deny a wicked evil sinner as any ability to do anything to do any thing pleasing to God. So the Non-Calvinist ingores all the passages and goes to the one so-called “gothca” verse, or so-called gotcha verse and say that settles it. Evil wicked men can do that which is pleasing in God’s sight. If Eric will post it in the future I will show that the mythical man-made fabricated idol of so-called free-will does not exist but is in bondage and enslaved to sin. He is a voluntary slave at that, taking great love and pleasue in the sin he commits. Romans 3 says both Jews and Gentiles are under sin. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

    But we cannot have the sciptures turned upon its head against each other and the Non-Calvinist jumping at one or two verses and ingoring the plain meaning of other scriptures of the bondage and inability of evil wicked sinners. If Jesus told Christians they could do nothing without Him, that is unless they were abiding within Him they would bear no fruit that would glorify God. What can the sinner do. When Jesus said withou me you can do “nothing,” NOTHING DOES NOT MEAN A LIGLE SOMETHING. So tell me if the Christian can do NOTHING WITHOUT CHRIST, what can an evil wicked sinner who is hostile and hates God do, and contribute to his eternal destiny.

    Martin Luther said about Cornelius, “Diatribe cites Cornelius the centenurion as an example of one whose prayers and almes pleased God before he was baptised or breathed upon by the Holy Ghost. (cf. Acts10:4). I too, have read Luke on Acts; but I have never found a single syllable to suggest that Cornelius’ words were morally good without the Holy Spirit, which is the Diatribe’s dream. (and the Dream of the Non-Calvinist o Soteriology101 who are ignorantly espousing the Pelagian heresy). Luther continues, “On the contrary, I find that he was a “just man, and one that feared God’s—–so Luke describes him (v. 2) But to a man without the Holy Spirit “a just man, and one that feared God’, is the same as TO CALL BELIAL CHRIST!!!! Moreover, the whole argument of the passageis concerned to show that Cornelius was ‘Clean’ before God; the vision sent down to Peter from heaven to Peter from heaven to reprove him bore witness to that. By such noteable deeds and words and words does Luke call attention to the righteiousness and faith of Cornelius. But for all that, the Diatribe, (the Non-Calvinists on Soteriology101) and its beloved Sophists, standing open-eyed underthe bright light of Luke’s word’s and of clear fact, continue in blindness; such is their lack of care in reading and making Scriptures. And then they have to brand them ;obscure and ambiguous’! Granted, Cornelius was not yet baptised, and had not yet heard the word of Christ’s ressurection; but does it hence follow that he was without the Holy Spirit? ON THESE PRINCIPLES YOU WILL BE SAYING THAT JOHN THE BAPTIST AND THE MOTHER OF CHRIST, AND SIMEON WERE WITHOUT THE HOLY SPIRIT!! Let us bid such thisck darkness farewell.

    This is not the last word on Cornelius, I will take this gotcha verse from the Non-Calvinist and then what will they do? Martin Luther already cast much doubt and shadow over thier constant spouting and one bango proof of it over and over all the while ignoring over and over the vast amount of Holy Scripture that says otherwise. AS if this one scripture (as understood by the Non-Calvinist would trump the whole counsel of God on this issue) God forbid, away with such a thought, may such a thing never be. God’s word will prevail. I will copy this long comment and past it to my site as I know it is powerful and I think Eric will not post it. But I will study more on Cornelius and the truth will be revealed because I know the Holy Scripture do not contradict themselves. Their may be seemingly contradictions. But I will take this excuse from the Non-Calviist as they think it cannot be answered in their pride. If it is answered. I hope it is not hidden, but it will be like a light shining on the darkness and in humility the NON-Calvinist will accept the engrafted word with meekness no longer being self-deceived. No longer exalting man and his idol of free-will that is fiction. But giving the glory to the living God and boasting only in the saving grace of Christ through faith which is a gift, not of works lest any man should boast. Salvation in Chist is the gift. Romans 6:24

    John 3:18-20= This is the condemnation, that light (the light of Christ) has come into the world (the incarnation) and men HATE the light (the light of Christ) and love the darkness, (the darkness of sin, Satan and the this world which is the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life and therefore hostile enemies of God) and will not come to the light lest there deeds be exposed.

    The only way the will come to the truth is if they are quickened and made alive in the Lord jesus Christ while they are (are still spirituall dead in tresspasses and sins). Ephesians 1. By His mercy and grace alone he has saved us. It is not of him he wills or of him who runs {shows actions or works, but of God who shows mercy, who calls both the Gentiles and the Jews. Some are vessels of destruction as Phararoh was and some are vessels of God’s mercy prepared beforehand. As I said before, which God will call from the Jews and the Gentiles.

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  33. Today’s reading 1 Kings 18
    20 So Ahab summoned all the people of Israel and the prophets to Mount Carmel. 21 Then Elijah stood in front of them and said, “How much longer will you waver, hobbling between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him! But if Baal is God, then follow him!” But the people were completely silent.
    —————————-

    Once again for the zillionth time in the Word we see a person (Elijah) giving a choice to the people (any honest reader would assume there is a real choice possible here). What’s more, these are the “chosen people” …so you would think that if God chose them, then they would in turn serve God.

    But they dont.

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  34. Today’s NT reading. Acts 11

    22 When the church at Jerusalem heard what had happened, they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23 When he arrived and saw this evidence of God’s blessing, he was filled with joy, and he encouraged the believers to stay true to the Lord. 24 Barnabas was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and strong in faith. And many people were brought to the Lord.

    ———
    A. “…he encouraged the believers to stay true to the Lord.” Looks like that means they could have been untrue to the Lord??

    B. “Barnabas was a good man.” sounds ‘man-centered’ to me.

    C. “strong in faith” So you can have different levels of faith? Your level of faith depends on what? No mention of God giving an extra dose of faith here.

    D. “Many people were brought to the Lord.” No mention of God giving them faith—no, they were brought. Is there any connection to Barnabas being a “good man” or being “strong in faith”? Appears to be.

    You see, Cavinists are famous for returning time and time again to the same 40-50 verses, but they have no way to explain why God put all this other stuff (about man) in His Word.

    Why does God say all this?

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    1. FOH,

      James 1:17 (NKJV)….
      Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above

      Matthew 17:20 (NKJV)….
      So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

      If faith is a gift, as Calvinism claims, and every gift from above is good and perfect, why can’t we move mountains?

      Mark 16:14 (NKJV)….
      Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.

      Why would the Lord be angry with the 11 for their lack of faith? If faith is a gift from above, exactly whose fault would that have been?

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      1. Eric I am going to believe my brother in Christ that you are busy or you are in transition 🙂 and that is why my responses and refutations have not been posted. But as I said I yield to your authority and administrative rights. I only ask that you check your heart and motives knowing that I believe the best about you my brother until I know different. Mainly because of our last experience with each other in our John 6 debate. You conducted yourself with Christlikeness, self-control and intregrity. That I am more interested that always just being doctrinally right. God bless my friend and brother. This response and refutation and response will also be posted on my wordpress site but I really beseech you in Christ to show mercy and please (even my back post) post them here if you are able and if you would please. It is AT your disgression I yield to as always and will not be angry or disgrunted but forgetting those things behind pressing forward to the high-calling that is in God, (which you already posesss in a greater degree that me and I have a godly jealously for) CHRISTLESSNESS!!!

        Because a lack of faith is the sin of unbelief which God commands all sinners to repent of their sins and have faith, that is embracing Christ as their Lord and Savior. It is a command of God, not a suggestion or just an invitation. It is what they ought to do be pleasing to God. Unbelif is a sin and God is angry with the sinner everyday. Everyday granted is another day of mercy to the sinner who deserves nothing but justice and eternal damnation and torment in the Lake of Fire burning in hell,. Away from the sweet presence of the Lord forever. Christ made provision for all sins when he carried the sins of the ungodly wicked that were imputed to Him when He died on the Cross in the death of His body and the shedding of His blood. Christ died for the “sin of unbelief too” You would not think so the way the Non-Calvinist talks” So he made provision for the sin of unbelif to fill up what was lacking in that area. Lord I believe help my unbelief. Fill up what is lacking in my faith.

        Psalm 7:10-12 King James Version (KJV)
        10 My defence is of God, which saveth the upright in heart.

        11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.

        12 If he turn not, he will whet his sword; he hath bent his bow, and made it ready.

        Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.

        Because:

        Romans 10:17 – So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

        and sinners can do nothing(nothing does not mean a little something) Christ told Christians, without me you can do nothing, so abide in me and you will bear much fruit. Sinners are hostile and hate God and His Son Jesus, (John 3:18-20)

        Sinful wicked evil fleshly man in bondage to sin (he that commits sin is a slave to sin as a lifestyle, but whom the Son of God sets free is free INDEED)

        Romans 8:7 the mind of the flesh [with its sinful pursuits] is actively hostile to God. It does not submit itself to God’s law, since it cannot,
        8 and those who are in the flesh [living a life that caters to sinful appetites and impulses] cannot please God.:

        So if Christians can do nothing without Christ and that abiding in Him, where does that leave the fictious power and inability of the idol of free-will that sinful wicked evil fleshely man so-called excersises faith in Jesus. This is pelagianism. I do not think you guys are in heresy. I do think you have to far to the extreme left to disprove Calvinism you are now espousing the heresy of Pelegainism without knowing it, igornantly.

        God bless and May the Grace of Christ be with my Brothers and Sisters in Christ always, I pray that you all prosper in body, soul and spirit. For biology, in God, even as Spiritually, we live and move and have our very being. Amen: So let it be to the Glory of God through us for God’s glory. All things are by Him, through Him, and ultimately for Him!!!

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  35. Go here for a response to Greek Bible Scholar Brian Wagner’s comments and assertion that the Translators of the ESV Reformed Study Bible were being disengenous. He believed they on purpose making it have a strong leaning towards Calvinism. His go to verse and example was Revelation 13:8. The ESV Reformed Study Bible was not the first to ever trasnslate the verse this way, by far not the first as I show many tranlations before it.

    Turettin Fan (who I am sure some of you have hear of) has tacked this issue head on. He has not only the ESV translation of Revelation 13:8 is not only possible but probable. He says it is correct.

    He gi ves a full article with responses and refutations to the Non-Calvinists using the Greek and I also give some comments myself.

    If Mr Brian Wagner, my friend and brother in Christ wishes to respond back to the refutation of His accusation of Calvinists Tranlators of the Esv being “Disengenous and the translation of 13:8 being wrong, the refutation and response to his comments can be found here. I ask him to use his expertise so I can submit it to Dr. Sean Cole who also is a Bible Greek Scholar. God bless my friend and brother in Christ Brian Wagner. Hope all is well with you and you are still on that slippey creek bank.

    The link to the article of the refutation of Brian Wagner can be found here below:

    https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/115078674/posts/2188

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  36. Eric, my friend and Christlike brother who I am not trying to get your attention or get you to do my bidding by saying what I know to be true about you. A work of the Holy Spirit in you my brother through the instrumentatility of the word of God. Jesus said sanctify them though truth, your word is truth Father.

    My request and petition is this. Please let my responses and refutations stand and be posted. If you do not those on Soteriology101 will think their have won the day because the Calvinist have no Biblical refutation or Biblical argumation to respond to them. I assure you we do. If you have been reading my post my friend, you know we do. I am not calling anyone a heritic on this site if that is what you believe, everyone of you is a brother in Christ. But as I said before any new Calvinist who came to Soteriology101 would immediatley leave with the understanding that those there thought his understanding of the Bible was heresy. For example as you know it has been said many times: “Calvinist follow John Calvin and worship the god of John Calvin.” I do not respond and say well you follow Dr Flowers and worship the god of Leighton Flowers. That is not overcoming evil with good or turning the other cheek. That would be throwing fuel on the fire making it burn brighter and hotter and their would be sinful quarelling other than Godly discussion on this issue.

    So if those on Soteriology are not challenged they will think they are right in their own mind as I think FOH said he has seen Calvinist come and go there. Like Troy I believe he said but I could be mistaken.

    I plead with you my brother by the mercies of God do not let this just be a Calvinist bashing site or a one verse bango and think that wraps it up and settles it. That is the milk of the word and it is time for spiritual meat. This is not superficial, just scratchint the surface spiritual substance. It goes deep.

    Romans 11:33 -O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

    We can know by God’s Spirit through Bible study and listening intently and digently to Pastors, teachers and each other what God has revealed to us in His Holy Word.

    Proverbs 21:2 -O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

    Proverbs 12:15 – King James Bible
    The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.

    King James Bible
    Proverbs 14:12 – There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

    Proverbs 18:17 Amplified Bible (AMP)
    17
    The first one to plead his case seems right,
    Until another comes and cross-examines him.

    Proverbs 27:17 Amplified Bible (AMP)
    17
    As iron sharpens iron,
    So one man sharpens [and influences] another [through discussion].

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    1. Kevin, I know that I have informed you before but I do not mind repeating it. For some reason since I unblocked you, WordPress still shoves all of your comments in the “trash” folder. I have to pull each one of your comments out before they will appear. Sometimes I do not check the comments on this blog more than once a day. I have approved every comment you have made recently except for the duplicates.

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      1. Would that not have something to do with the settings my friend Eric. I do not think that “WordPress is Alive” and is has ill-hatred toward Reformed believers. I just do not understand why WordPress, (as you speak of it as an Identity or something Personified) would single me out arbitrary and throw my comments in the trash. Now I am not making accusations my brother in Christ. As I have come to know you are a man in Christ who is above board and would not do this because of some deep seated ill will and hatred of Calvinism. You are a man in Christ, who clings to Holiness, truth, and integrity. If I did not believe that about you, Dr. Flowers and Brian Wagner I would be out of here. Even though our Doctrine on how God saves someone is different, maturity in Christ exceeds that to me. As I personally believe that Non-Calvinist get more of the “Magors” right when it comes to Christ on the Holy Cross, the body of His death, the shedding of His blood and the forgiveness/remission of sins. Yes we disagree how this takes place. But both sides believe that an individual must first see himself in need of a Savior to save him from those sins. Then he must repent of those sins doing a 360 turning to God and embracing Jesus in faith, believing on Him for eternal Salvation. Now I am not trying to white-wash it. I know the differences, regeneration preceding faith, definite atonement or particular redemption, elected from eternity unto salvation in time. But it boils down to any sinner feeling a heavy load of sin, being convicted of that sin by the Holy Spirit, knowing the wrath of a Holy God is upon Him and his eternal damnation is one of damnation and hell, thus burning in the Lake of Fire forever and ever. Separated for all eternity from the righteousness peace and joy and complete satisfaction of being in the presence of the Lord forever. So both sides call sinners who are weary and heavy laden with sins to come to Jesus and he will give them His rest, for he is Meed and Lowly. We tell them to flee the wrath of God and into the loving and forgiving graceful arms of Jesus by faith. We tell them of His death burial and resurrection for justification and that whosoever calls upon the Name of the Lord will be Saved. Whosoever drinks of the Water of Life will never thirst again. I know there is more we do not have in common, but there more, much more that we do have in common or Calvinist would say that awful H word. But we believe that you too have the Spirit of Adoption within you crying out Abba Father even as we do. Sorry so long my friend. Just wanted to connect and so that one day, when we see Him, our Great God and Savior face to face, and we put off this corrupt body and put on a glorious body like Jesus who saved us by His grace. You and I are going to be holding hands Eric before the Throne of our Almighty God who Saved us, Jesus. Together we will cast our crowns at his feet. We may bow in worship, we may weep and cry, we may shout in joy and love him with great adoration. But you no what, one thing we will not be doing is arguing Calvinism and Non-Calvinism.

        Praise to the Glory of God’s grace found only in the Lord Jesus Christ and given in superabunace to Eric and Kevin, brothers in Christ, to whom the God of heaven and of our Salvation has made us accepted and blessed in His beloved Son in whom He is well pleased.

        Sorry Eric, sometimes I just get filled with joy and feel like I leave this world or want to leave all this pettiness behind. I am not saying that right doctrine is not important. Theology and and Principles are of the utmost importance and we are to strive to be as close and purt to the Holy Word of God as we can. So yes, these discussions can continue with what I said above in mind is wish, hope and holy desire..

        Brother please to me if I need to post directly on Soteriology101. if you can I would appreciate it. If not, I am not going to bother you, by making you dig my comments out of the trash bin. I will just comment on my own site and try to direct traffic my way. Thanks again Eric. I know I know, So sorry so long. You sounded a little frustrated above in your firmness but I now it is hard to tell. I also mentioned in my email and comments to you that it may be going into the trash so I am well aware of that brother. So tell me what you want me to do.

        You are the admin with the power and authority. If you want me to cease and stop posting I will and just stay in my own little corner. Remember I have never accused you of being sinfully biased or showing any ill-will toward me. Just the opposite. I have praised your holy conduct and the kindness you have treated me with with. Like I said, I believe the best of my brothers in Christ until I know different. So you sound offended and frustrated and I do not want that my friend. you just instruct me what to do with the Authority God has given you over me and I will submit eagerly and at once.

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      2. Kevin, I do think WordPress sometimes has a mind of it’s own! I think it is sending your comments into the trash because you were previously blocked. I checked multiple times and you are no longer blocked. But the site is still sending your comments to the trash. I do not know what setting would fix it, my apologies.

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      3. No worries Eric, if you would rather I did not post, I am content. This is not a have to. The Lord gives and he takes away. I can post on my own website. So it is not your fault. It is my fault for conducting myself the way I did the first time.

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      4. Eric.
        I apologize and ask you to forgive me please. I just re-read one of my post and it sounded as if I was being accusitive toward and doing it in the sinful pretense of humility. I am so sorry my brother. My heart is desperately wicked and deceitful above all things. My sinful wicked evil flesh is still warring against the Holy Spirit within me so that I cannot always do the things I wish. I sinned against you and God on this one. I have asked to forgive me and wash me in the blood of Christ and that you would show me mercy and grace. My pride has many faces Eric and my fleshly sinful self is always seeking to manifest in ways that even at times I am self-deceived by wrapping what I say in words I think are kind and gentle. God forbid!!! Death and life are in the power of the tongue. The tongue such a small member is set on fire by hell. With it I bless God and with it I curse men. So you had a right to have holy anger and frustration with me.

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      5. Now hold on there Eric my brother, the word self-flagellation, what do you mean by that, I am glad you are not offended, but I was not in any pretense of flogging myself to seen but actually re-read what I wrote and noticed that I did come across the wrong way. I was being sincere Sir. I am probably just Misunderstanding you but that word really reflects a different understanding than what I was trying to convey. When a brother sins against another brother he is suppose to do what I did even if you were not offended. In your response, it seemed you were a little frustrated. I know it is hard when posting to know one’s motives but I will consider the issue closed.

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