Piper takes on Prevenient Grace

Dr. Brian Abasciano just released this article in response to Dr. John Piper’s recent critique of classical Arminians view of “partial pre-faith regeneration” (represented by Dr. Roger Olson) which can be heard here.

Both Drs. Abasciano and Olson represent Arminian theology, though they have a different take on the concept of “partial regeneration,” which Abasciano explains more fully in his article.

Both Olson and Abasciano maintain, however, that God must supply a supernatural grace to the lost, above and beyond the gospel, in order for them to believe the clearly revealed good news sent by God Himself.

Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that the gospel is a sufficient work of supernatural grace to enable whosoever hears it to believe (Rom 10:14; Jn 20:31; 2 Tim 3:15). And that the only reason someone might be in a condition by which they are “ever hearing but not understanding, ever seeing but not perceiving” is due to an individual’s libertarianly free choice to continually reject God’s clearly revealed truth and remain in rebellion (the word “libertarian” simply means they had the moral capacity to choose otherwise). Over time, despite God’s patience and gracious provisions, a sinner’s heart may “grow calloused” or their “consciences become seared” and they may be “given over by God to their defiled minds.” But, despite what both Arminians and Calvinists teach, this is not an innate moral incapacity from birth inherited from Adam due to the Fall (Acts 28:23-28; Jn 12:39-41; Heb 3:15; Rom 1:28; 2:15; 1 Tim 4:2).

Nothing in all of scripture clearly teaches that fallen humanity has lost the innate moral capacity to respond positively to God’s own gracious appeals and provisions to be reconciled from that Fall.

With all due respect to my Arminian friends, I believe their concession to the unfounded Calvinistic doctrine of “Total Inability” has muddled the waters and made an otherwise clear distinction rather difficult to untangle.

I understand that both Calvinists and Arminians desire to be true to the biblical account, but my challenge to them both is to engage with us over the relevant biblical data (without punting to the boogie man fallacy of Pelagianism). In my experience, the scholars on both sides tend to site the other as validation for their otherwise unfounded views (i.e. even Arminians agree with us on this point so no need to debate it) and anyone who falls outside the 16th century parameters are piously dismissed by man-made labels also introduced in the 16th century (i.e. semi-Pelagianism).

I will not remain quiet while the gospel of grace is assumed to lack the sufficient grace to accomplish what the scriptures themselves say they were intended to accomplish!

“But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” (John‬ ‭20:31‬)

434 thoughts on “Piper takes on Prevenient Grace

  1. Thank-you Leighton for keeping the light on. I appreciate you not giving up in this good fight of faith. The church in North America desperately needs men like you. There is a darkness coming that has so clouded the Gospel of grace. Few people have the courage to stand up and speak the truth. The reason is, you will get shouted down and called names but the TRUTH is worth standing for. Thanks for doing that.

  2. I think you’re absolutely right that the Gospel itself can serve as a sufficient work of supernatural Grace.

    It’s probably even broader than that; God can use supernatural interventions to cause finely-tuned ripples in otherwise natural events to, in an indirect but teleological way, turn people around via secondary causation. Does this have supernatural contingencies? Yes. Do we credit them to God? Yes. Were they intent-driven? Yes. With 3x “Yes” there doesn’t seem to be a ligitimate reason to deny their legitimacy — their “qualification” as efficacious Grace.

    My quibbles, which will sound like a broken record after these last few years:

    [1] Since I’m a non-Calvinistic deterministic compatibilist (natural freedom via deterministic chaos; “teleological drift”), my take would lack reference to libertarian free will.

    [2] Re: “Given over by God to their defiled minds.” Romans ch. 11 says that God has bound everyone over to disobedience, universalizing the plight of the so-called “others” in Romans ch. 1 (as if Romans 2:1 weren’t enough). The wording is also important in 11:32: apeitheia is not mere disobedience, but a refusal to be persuaded, that is, exactly the kind of incorrigibility we’re talking about.

  3. What is wrong with believing that the innate capacity to believe the Gospel is a result of the presence of divine grace i.e “the true light that enlightenment every man that cometh into the world”( John 1)? Maybe a better term is preventative or persisting grace…as the grace that remains with man, even after the fall, prevents innate total depravity, allowing receptivity to the Gospel unless they harden their own hearts in rebellion leading to their own self inflicted reprobation?

  4. Roger Olson writes…

    “I have always been one to embrace good theological words even if they are misused by others. I prefer to rescue them from the dustbin of theological vocabulary rather than discard them. Total depravity simply means that there is no spiritual good useful for salvation and developing a strong relationship with God in any person born of Adam’s race (except Christ) that is not a super-added gift of God. With Calvinists I can affirm that we are all spiritually dead apart from supernatural grace, but I add only that 1) even the spiritually dead possess the formal image of God, and 2) supernatural grace heals that deadness so that sinners can at least make a decision to repent and trust in God and Christ or not.”

    Where in scripture does it say that fallen man is partially healed prior to faith? Where in scripture does it say fallen man is partially redeemed prior to faith?

    NO WHERE.

    This is a man-made solution for a man-made problem.

    In spite of our Arminian brothers’ insistence that prevenient grace is irresistible, it is not. Look closely to what Olson writes above….

    “…supernatural grace heals that deadness so that sinners can at least make a decision to repent and trust in God and Christ or not.”

    The goal of prevenient grace is not to bring everyone to saving faith, but rather to bring them to a point where they can accept or reject the gospel. The lost sinner is not resisting the prevenient grace (he can’t), he is just refusing the gospel of Christ. If EVERYONE is supernaturally brought to a position where they can choose to accept or reject the gospel, exactly how is that NOT IRRESTIBLE? And, if prevenient grace is resistible, then why does everyone willingly cooperate with it?

    It makes no sense.

    If you believe in TD/TI then you are forced to believe in some form of irresistible grace.

  5. Here’s another observation.

    “Provisionists/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that the gospel is a sufficient work of supernatural grace to enable whosoever hears it to believe (Rom 10:14; Jn 20:31; 2 Tim 3:15).”

    I agree, but to a point. What about all those who believed in the OT? Most believers in the OT never even heard of the gospel of Christ and, yet, believed God.

    Genesis 15:1-6 (NKJV)….
    After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.” But Abram said, “Lord GOD, what will You give me, seeing I go childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” Then Abram said, “Look, You have given me no offspring; indeed one born in my house is my heir!” And behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, “This one shall not be your heir, but one who will come from your own body shall be your heir.” Then He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.

    Surely Abraham didn’t understand the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ nor did God expect him to. He didn’t know anything about a Roman cross. God just promised Abraham a land, a government, and a people (the Abrahamic Covenant/the gospel of the kingdom) and he believed. Partially healed? Partially redeemed? Zapped by some form of irresistible grace?

    Come on folks, seriously?

    I prefer Hebrews 4:12 (NKJV)…

    For the word of God (either spoken or written) is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

    But even the above verse never insinuates that man’s depravity has been overcomed nor diminished (even in the least). Nowhere in scripture does it even hint that fallen man must be restored to a pre-fallen state before he can believe.

  6. I agree with the position that Arminius drank too deeply from the well of Calvin. I believe it is historically shown that Arminius spent a lot of distress and paper trying to convince people he was aligned with Calvin. To much political prowess sometimes affects the body of Christ. Calvinism had become a strong political power in Arminius’ life-time.

    However on reasons that people are sometimes handicapped such that they need a little supernatural touch in order to be set free – I agree with Dr. Flowers – but would add that sometimes the ensnarement can be demonic – such as a person who has been practicing witchcraft. This individual may need a little supernatural touch to be fully set free. But even in that state of ensnarement – if that individual can at least to some degree have a sincere desire to cry out for help – Jesus is not far from this one – can and will answer with grace.

    if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. Psalm 139:8

    1. BrD,

      Agreed, but only to the point that some might need additional evidence or proof.

      Look at the book of John.

      Some believed because He turned the water into wine (John 2:11).

      Some believed because of the word of the woman (John 4:39).

      Some believed when He raised Lazarus (John 11:45).

      Supernaturally zapped? Partially healed? Partially redeemed? Nope. Just believing the evidence. Some just need more evidence than others. Then, there are some who won’t believe in spite of all the evidence given.

      John 4:46-48 (NKJV)….
      So Jesus came again to Cana of Galilee where He had made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman whose son was sick at Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus had come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and implored Him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe.”

      What good would “signs and wonders” be to those incapable of believing? If our Calvinist/Arminian brothers are correct, Jesus should have said….

      “Unless you people are regenerated/released from the bondage of sin/restored to a pre-fall condition, you will by no means believe.”

      1. phillip writes, “Supernaturally zapped? Partially healed? Partially redeemed? Nope. Just believing the evidence. Some just need more evidence than others. Then, there are some who won’t believe in spite of all the evidence given.”

        What’s the difference in the “somes”? Being supernaturally zapped would easily explain that difference. When, phillip says, “Nope.” he is just expressing his personal opinion. His opinion does not eliminate the possibility of one being “Supernaturally zapped” and another not.

  7. Yes to this statement;
    “With all due respect to my Arminian friends, I believe their concession to the unfounded Calvinistic doctrine of “Total Inability” has muddled the waters and made an otherwise clear distinction rather difficult to untangle.”

    And I Praise God for this statement below and I hope to help in small ways in my own life!!!

    “I will not remain quiet while the gospel of grace is assumed to lack the sufficient grace to accomplish what the scriptures themselves say they were intended to accomplish!”

    Amen

    Thank you for speaking up it isn’t easy!

  8. Leighton, you have made a difficult and confusing subject to most (Calvinism, Arminianism and Traditionalism), very clear and well defined. Clarifying this issue will come with its challenges because the contention really stems back to each theology and its various views on election. The historical labels (Cal/Arm) are necessary and at the same time unfortunate, since Arminius was still locked into a “form” of Calvinistic election short of the deterministic aspect, and this always requires navigation. Thus, all the arguments developed have to take into account previous views and argue from there – though you’ve done a great job and the Lord has used you in a unique way to clarify what can be terribly difficult concept if people aren’t used to thinking logically as an apologist. I’m looking forward to your presentation on this issue and how you’ll approach it. Keep up the good work, you’re reaching beyond “Texas Baptists”.

    1. Thank you brother Scott,
      Dr. Flowers is not often here to respond to posts due to a very busy schedule – but you may find him on facebook.

      Sincere thanks for your kind comment! :-]

      br.d

  9. Dr, Abasciano writes, in his article, “Then, in v. 8, Paul explains that this salvation/regeneration takes place through faith, which places faith logically prior to regeneration as the means through which regeneration takes place: “For by grace you have been saved through faith” (Eph 2:8a).”

    Another way to read Ephesians 2: 8 is, “For by the grace of God working on you have been saved through faith working in you.” This reading does not tell us how regeneration and faith interact with each other. For that, we go back to v4-5, “God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).” Here we see that God’s grace was extended to those whom He loved (His elect) so that He took them while they were dead and made them alive. What was our condition when we were dead in sin – “we walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,” We were slaves to sin by nature and to Satan who was working in us.

    The article above completely ignores Ephesians 2 and says, “Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that the gospel is a sufficient work of supernatural grace to enable whosoever hears it to believe (Rom 10:14; Jn 20:31; 2 Tim 3:15).” I think both Arminians and Calvinists would agree with that statement, adding only that God’s prevenient or saving grace must precede it The key phrase in that statement is, “…whosoever hears it…” implying that two people can listen to the gospel and one will “hear” and one will not. Why is that? Ask the Arminian or the Calvinist.

    1. “Another way to read Ephesians 2:8 is, “For by the grace of God working on you have been saved through faith working in you.””

      What translation are you finding that it? That is not “another way to read” the verse.

      “This reading does not tell us how regeneration and faith interact with each other.”

      Since you made up your reading, I think we can safely ignore it. You are right the term “regeneration” is not used, but that doesn’t mean we have no idea of the new birth’s relationship to faith, as Rom 6 and many other passages show that new life in Christ *follows* faith, as the believer must first die to sin and *then* be raised by God to new life.

      “For that, we go back to v4-5, “God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).” Here we see that God’s grace was extended to those whom He loved (His elect) so that He took them while they were dead and made them alive. What was our condition when we were dead in sin – “we walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,” We were slaves to sin by nature and to Satan who was working in us.”

      How do you possibly read all that into the text? Eph 2:4-5 shows how God takes the believer who is dead in trespasses, dead under the law, and makes them alive together with Christ. Again, baptism, new life, etc. Nothing in the passage requires or implies that God is picking some people to make alive/regenerate so they can get faith.

      And before you counter, but verses 4 and 5 don’t mention faith! – notice the parenthetical comment: ‘By grace you have been saved.’ This is what Paul expands on in Eph 2:8. He isn’t suddenly talking about a different sequence, but expanding on the point he made just prior. We are saved (pass from death to life, transferred from slaves to sin to children of God and heirs of the kingdom, etc.) *through* faith. I’ve mentioned the Greek preposition ‘dia’ to you before. Imagine the diameter of a circle. Imagine points at either side where it intersects with the circle. “Dia” is to go successfully across to the other side. For example, God speaking a word “through” a prophet means the prophet was the “diameter” which the word of God successfully went through. (God speaking being the start point, the prophet the diameter, and the fulfillment the endpoint.) To go “through” another route means the person ‘started’ on route, the route is the diameter he goes through, and his destination is the end point. So if we are saved by grace *through* faith then grace is the starting point (such as the gospel message, revelation of Christ, etc.,) faith is the ‘diameter’ of the circle, and salvation is the end-point. (We also see this in I Pet 1:9, where salvation is called the “end result” of the believer’s faith.) We know from the grammar of verse 9 that this whole process (salvation by grace and through faith) is a gift from God. Now, salvation is not an end-point in the typical sense: the circle is just an analogy. But salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, the promise of glorification, etc. It’s not a point in time, it’s a state of being delivered from sin, declared righteous, and holding the promises, etc.

      But faith has to come first before God will grant the new life, righteousness, and other blessings.

      “The article above completely ignores Ephesians 2”
      Not using a particular passage as a support is not the same thing as deliberately ignoring a passage. For obvious reasons, it is impossible to do an exhaustive Bible presentation on any topic. Generally, people select the most relevant passages to their points. And since Eph 2 does not *contradict* anything in the article, there is no problem with it not being mentioned.

      ““Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that the gospel is a sufficient work of supernatural grace to enable whosoever hears it to believe (Rom 10:14; Jn 20:31; 2 Tim 3:15).” I think both Arminians and Calvinists would agree with that statement, adding only that God’s prevenient or saving grace must precede it.” The key phrase in that statement is, “…whosoever hears it…” implying that two people can listen to the gospel and one will “hear” and one will not. ”

      That’s some interesting semantic juggling. But basically, you are using “hear” in a completely different way. You wouldn’t agree with the traditionalist because they believe anyone who *physically* hears or is presented the gospel is enabled to believe, and you are treating “hearing” as a figurative concept, such as “responding in God-given faith.”

      So, ‘we agree, but I mean something completely different by this term…’ means you disagree.

      “Why is that? Ask the Arminian or the Calvinist.”

      I’d rather look at scripture. Some “reasons” given for people rejecting the gospel are: Prepped to argue against it, rebellion against God, love of self, love of worldly pleasure, pride, not wanting to be persecuted, not wanting to give up earthly things if asked, not wanting loss of reputation, not seeing the need for God, finding the gospel message foolish because it seems too simple, Messiah not what they hoped for, distraction of cares of the world, etc. Some “reasons” given for people responding in faith are: thankful for the offer of forgiveness, humbly acknowledging the depth of their sin and need for a savior, anticipation of the Messiah, childlike trust, saw the proof in Jesus’ miracles, were personally healed, saw others healed and trusted Jesus could heal them to, followed God and so recognized the Son, testimonies, noted fulfillment of scriptures, personally seeing the Resurrected Christ, visions, joy at the message, etc.

      But no where is “unable to have faith” listed as a reason people in general cannot respond to the gospel in faith, and no where is “regenerated by God” listed as a reason people believe.

      1. RH: “Another way to read Ephesians 2:8 is, “For by the grace of God working on you have been saved through faith working in you.””
        JR: “What translation are you finding that it? That is not “another way to read” the verse.”

        Not a translation; just an expansion of thought. We know that faith is internal being assurance and conviction, so your complaint cannot with me saying, “through faith working in you.” You must have problems with me saying, “the grace of God working on you,” but even here, how are we to suppose that grace works if not on us? Maybe, I should have said, “in us.” That, however, seems to have upset you earlier, so I thought to avoid that. Perhaps, I should have said, “another way to understand” the verse.” Unless this is a really important point to you, I say we let it lie.

      2. JR: “that doesn’t mean we have no idea of the new birth’s relationship to faith, as Rom 6 and many other passages show that new life in Christ *follows* faith, as the believer must first die to sin and *then* be raised by God to new life.”

        If we identify the “new birth” as a new beginning, then the new life of the believer described in Romans 6, is that life one embarks on after declaring that Christ is Lord. Calvinists identify the being born again as a new beginning that enables faith which faith then works a new way of living (or a new life) in the believer. Faith is necessary to living in Christ. The issue is whether faith is necessary to be made alive in Christ.

      3. RH: ““For that, we go back to v4-5,…”
        JR: “How do you possibly read all that into the text?…Nothing in the passage requires or implies that God is picking some people to make alive/regenerate so they can get faith.”

        I made two statements–
        1. Here we see that God’s grace was extended to those whom He loved (His elect) so that He took them while they were dead and made them alive.
        2. What was our condition when we were dead in sin …We were slaves to sin by nature and to Satan who was working in us.

        I said nothing about God picking some people. Perhaps it was this, “…God’s grace was extended to those whom He loved…” When Paul writes, “because of His great love with which He loved us,,,,when we were dead…made us alive…,” the “us” and “we” refer to believers (or God;s elect without regard to how they became His elect). I don’t see why this would be a problem. The second statement only restates what the Scripture says, so it cannot be a problem. What is your issue here?

        Then “And before you counter, but verses 4 and 5 don’t mention faith!”

        My counter is that they don’t mention “God picking some” and I did not draw that conclusion.

        Then, “notice the parenthetical comment: ‘By grace you have been saved.’”

        I see no problem in this paragraph other than the confusing comment about faith as a lead-in.

        Then, “But faith has to come first before God will grant the new life, righteousness, and other blessings.”

        That is your opinion. However, you did state earlier that grace is the starting point and faith (assurance and conviction) is the means to carry a person from justification to glorification. We do know that the new life was initiated while the person was dead in sin. However, once a person has assurance and conviction, what does he do – Romans 10, “if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Confession and belief are the natural products of assurance and conviction. Are these the works of people still dead in sin?

      4. rh: “The article above completely ignores Ephesians 2”
        JR: “Not using a particular passage as a support is not the same thing as deliberately ignoring a passage. ”

        I agree. My point was that the above SOT101 article starts off referencing the Piper/Abasciano disagreement over regeneration and that argument was focused on Ephesians 2. Then, it says, “Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain…” and one thinks that we are going to get a third way to look at Ephesians 2. No, the article takes off on a different path – a path not necessarily opposed to either Piper or Abasciano.

        The point of the SOT101 article is, “Nothing in all of scripture clearly teaches that fallen humanity has lost the innate moral capacity to respond positively to God’s own gracious appeals and provisions to be reconciled from that Fall.” So, why cite the Piper and Abasciano discussion and even link to that discussion when that discussion really had nothing to do with the SOT101 argument? The Piper/Abasciano disagreement was a nice discussion and was interesting but did not set up the reader for the SOT101 discussion. So, why start out discussing the Piper/Abasciano disagreement and then veer off into a completely different discussion?

        There was this comment, “Both Olson and Abasciano maintain, however, that God must supply a supernatural grace to the lost, above and beyond the gospel, in order for them to believe the clearly revealed good news sent by God Himself.” That being the case, why not cite a discussion where the sufficiency of the gospel was the subject.

      5. JR: “…basically, you are using “hear” in a completely different way. You wouldn’t agree with the traditionalist because they believe anyone who *physically* hears or is presented the gospel is enabled to believe,..”

        Is that a true statement about Traditionalists? You then say, “Some “reasons” given for people rejecting the gospel are:…Some “reasons” given for people responding in faith are:” Did you mean for those who rejected the gospel to have faith also? If so, that would set up a contradiction – people with assurance and conviction in the gospel rejecting the gospel. So, even you know that there is a difference between those who reject the gospel and those who accept the gospel. I say that the difference is that some “hear” the gospel (thereby receiving faith) while others do not “hear” (thereby not receiving faith).

        Notice the language in the article above, “Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that the gospel is a sufficient work of supernatural grace to enable whosoever hears it to believe…” this says that all people who hear the gospel preached receive faith – that is they receive assurance and conviction in the gospel. If not, what could they being saying about “faith” in the phrase, “…o enable whosoever hears it to believe…” unless they recognize that not everyone who “hears” the gospel receives faith.

        You accuse me of “interesting semantic juggling.” I don’t think that you or the Traditionalists are immune to that charge.

        Then, “…no where is “unable to have faith” listed as a reason people in general cannot respond to the gospel in faith,…”

        That is because “lack of faith” is the only real reason people cannot respond to the gospel. See your explanation about faith earlier.

        Then, “…and no where is “regenerated by God” listed as a reason people believe.”

        John 3 does say that a person must be born again to both see and enter the kingdom of heaven. If a person cannot see the kingdom of heaven, what is he to believe and if a person does believe doesn’t that faith he has which supports his believing entail assurance and conviction of a kingdom of heaven.

      6. rhutchin
        That is because “lack of faith” is the only real reason people cannot respond to the gospel

        br.d
        rhutchin (typical Calvinist thinking) is treating faith like it is a commodity.
        Its like a lamborghini or a Ferrari – one either has it – or one does not have it.

        The thinking pattern here is black & white thinking.

        If they do have it – a salvation light-bulb is auto-magically, irresistibly, and unavoidably ON.

        If they don’t have it – then IPSNAY on the salvation light-bulb.

        Calvinists recognize that people have a faith that allows them to believe when they sit in a chair that that chair will hold their wait and not collapse. Or faith that the earth will stay in its orbit and not shoot off into cold space.

        But Calvinists differentiate that type of faith – from their magical salvation light-bulb faith. :-]

      7. Well, Said BR.D
        Even when RH is shown that the Bible uses the same word Believe or Faith in the context of believing a Lie, what is false it is the exact same GREEK word as Believing what is TRUE. The faith of an UNSAVED person is the SAME faith as a SAVED person’s faith, the difference is the OBJECT of their FAITH…. Unsaved and Saved both have faith. They simply place their Faith in different objects. One object of Faith Saves the Others DO NOT.
        2Th 2:10b-12 …because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.  Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,  in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” 

      8. GraceAdict writes, ‘The faith of an UNSAVED person is the SAME faith as a SAVED person’s faith, the difference is the OBJECT of their FAITH….”

        Not really. That is why people refer to “true” or “saving” faith – to denote a difference. Of course, the difference is the object – one has assurance and conviction of something. That faith identified by Paul when he writes, “”faith comes by hearing” is that true or saving faith that has assurance and conviction in its object – Jesus Christ. No one is born with this faith – it can only be received by hearing the gospel. In addition, as we read in John 6, “everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me,” true or saving faith.is something heard and learned from God – as Ephesians 2 tells us, it is God’s gift to His elect.

      9. Yes totally true!
        But of course the Calvinist has a sacred system – and he must find ways to make the Bible fit with it.

        And we know that for the Calvinist – the creature’s every neurological impulse is determined by Calvin’s god (at the foundation of the world – millennia before humans are created) anyway.

        So for the Calvinist – those people who “have faith” or “apply faith to Jesus Christ” – are simply those people whom Calvin’s god designed and programmed to do so.

        The rest are designed to be spiritually dead.

      10. GraceAdict writes:
        “The faith of an UNSAVED person is the SAME faith as a SAVED person’s faith, the difference is the OBJECT of their FAITH….”

        rh writes:
        “Not really. That is why people refer to “true” or “saving” faith – to denote a difference.”

        Note that ‘people’, i.e., false teachers, refer to ‘saving faith’ as if it is some unique commodity that separates it from all other faith, not scripture. Of course it was completely ignored that the word used is the same, nor was evidence provided of scripture describing such a ‘saving faith’ commodity that can be passed out like gumballs. Faith is faith, and it is the individual who chooses in whom or what they put their faith, and in whom or what they do not.

        You cannot get it out of the gumball machine and thereafter ‘have’ the gumball faith you always wanted.

        What is also never addressed is scriptures references to the quality and quantity of faith, as if the individual involved was responsible for its existence and size. Jesus was surprised that some people’s faith was so big, and disappointed that his followers’ faith was often so small. Which suggests that the person involved was responsible for how much faith they had, not the object of their faith.

        The disciples did not have so little faith in the boat in the storm because God was stingy, but because they simply did not genuinely believe that Jesus could have supernatural power. Their faith was small because they did not truly believe he was who he said he was, and that he could do what he said he could.

        So would this ‘saving faith’ need to be bigger than a mustard seed, or does scripture simply not apply at all to Calvinism’s made up concepts?

      11. So true!

        When push comes to shove faith is only a THEORETICAL CONCEPT to the Calvinist anyway.

        Because the sacred doctrine tells him that if he is not “elect” then he doesn’t really have saving faith.

        He can imagine the possibility of having saving faith – but he can’t REALLY KNOW whether or not he has it.
        Because no man knows who Calvin’s god has elected.

        Making matter worse he could be being deceived by Calvin’s god into believing that he has it.

        According to Calvin – Calvin’s god deceives a quote LARGE MIXTURE of Calvinists temporarily

        To give them a “Savor” of salvation – supposedly to magnify their torment in the lake of fire.

        Makes you want to run and sign up for it – doesn’t it! :-]

      12. TS00 writes, “Faith is faith, and it is the individual who chooses in whom or what they put their faith, and in whom or what they do not. ”

        Paul is specific, “For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.” How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our report?” So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

        Paul speaks of that faith that is unto salvation. It is unique from any other “faith.”

        Then, ‘So would this ‘saving faith’ need to be bigger than a mustard seed,…”

        The faith of which Paul speaks is the least necessary to salvation – it is distinguished by being assurance and conviction in the gospel. It is sufficient to begin the Christian life but as Paul also instructs, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” It is this that leads to increasing faith as one is transformed by the word. God initiated a system using preachers and teachers to help in the transformation process but always, it is God who gives the increase.

      13. TS00
        “Faith is faith, and it is the individual who chooses in WHOM or what they put their faith, and in whom or what they do not. ”

        rhutchin
        Paul is specific, “For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved

        br.d
        A confirmation of the statement TS00 just made – thank you.

        rhutchin
        ” How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!”

        br.d
        The offering of a gift to someone and that someone’s acceptance of that gift are two different things – and it is IRRATIONAL to conflate the two as one and the same.

        rhutchin
        But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our report?”

        br.d
        A confirmation of the statement TS00 just made – thank you.

        rhutchin
        So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

        br.d
        The offering of a gift to someone and that someone’s acceptance of that gift are two different things – and it is IRRATIONAL to conflate the two as one and the same.

        rhutchin
        Paul speaks of that faith that is unto salvation. It is unique from any other “faith.”

        br.d
        For the Calvinist yes – they are taught to treat faith as a commodity which must be given to a person
        Or it can be seen as the divine engineer taking out the TOTAL DEPRAVITY floppy program disk from the bio-robot – and replacing it with an ELECT floppy program disk.

        But for the non-Calvinist a person simply turns the faculty of faith which they already have towards the person of Jesus Christ – sufficient to meet divine expectations.

        rhutchin
        Then, ‘So would this ‘saving faith’ need to be bigger than a mustard seed,…”

        br.d
        It only needs to be as big as the divine expectation.

        rhutchin
        The faith of which Paul speaks is the least necessary to salvation – it is distinguished by being assurance and conviction in the gospel. It is sufficient to begin the Christian life but as Paul also instructs, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” It is this that leads to increasing faith as one is transformed by the word. God initiated a system using preachers and teachers to help in the transformation process but always, it is God who gives the increase.

        br.d
        A confirmation of the statement TS00 just made – thank you.

      14. Hi there,
        I’ve heard it said in Calvinism, that ‘faith’ is the gift here in Ephesians 2. This ignores the context, which is dealing with the scheme of redemption — God’s plan for the salvation of man.

        Past condition:
        Notice. Paul speaking of those who are now saints (vss. 1-3). Who were dead in trespasses and sins. Note carefully in these verses that it’s a description of their spiritual condition after they became sinners and before they were saved.

        Present condition:
        Paul says, God made us alive together with Christ and raised us up and seated us with Christ in the heavenlies (vss. 4-6). In other words, what God had done for them, their salvation.

        The two sides of that salvation:
        (A) God’s part: These verses emphasize His mercy, love (vs. 4), His kindness (vs. 7), and the grace of God (vss. 5,7,8). Without this, their salvation would have been impossible.
        (B) Man’s part: The verses also emphasize the necessity of man responding to the grace of God. Man must believe (have faith) and do the will of God (vs. 8).
        Conclusion:
        (C) The gift of God (vs. 8): Paul is not speaking about faith here, but about salvation by grace through faith. This fits with both the context, and with the natural import of the verse itself.

      15. HOW “FAITH” IS USED:
        Consider the following examples of a twofold use of the word “believe”: 1) Faith only: “As He spoke these things, many came to believe in Him. So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John. 8:30-32). Obviously, the faith of these Jews did not and could not save unless and until it was ‘conjoined with obedience.’ Their failure to “continue” or to render such obedience showed that this faith wasn’t enough. Theirs was faith only, and such would not save (cf. John 12:42,43; Jas. 2:19,20).
        2) Obedient faith: The eleventh chapter of Hebrews well illustrates the fact that only obedient faith saves. Read it carefully. Notice that the expression “by faith” is followed by a verb of action in every instance, which shows that obedience is inherent in the word “faith” — it is ‘conjoined with obedience.’

      16. Aidan, I agree with you that ‘faith alone’ is misleading; and also leads to a good deal of unfruitful living. True faith is more than mere gnosis, but generates repentance, and an ongoing relationship with God, which leads to salvation from death.

      17. The Scripture does teach clearly that there are two types of faith, one from the head and one from the heart (“believe that” and “believe on”).

        It also teaches clearly that faith from the heart is not a meritorious work of obedience, nor does it produce meritorious works of obedience for salvation or to maintain salvation. It does however promote and produce works obedience out of love and gratitude to God for His mercy and grace.

      18. I agree, TS00, and hello BR.D. Greetings from Ireland.
        Faith without repentance is practically “faith alone,” unfruitful, and just a head knowledge. In fact, I would add that if faith doesn’t involve repentance, not only is it not ‘true faith,’ but it is a disobedient faith. And if it’s not a faith that obeys, we know what the divine response says; “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?(Luke 6:46). Truly a call to repent to obey (cf. Luke 6:47-49).
        Furthermore, the interchangeable use of the words “believe” and “obey” in their variations show that obedience inheres in acceptable faith. Two examples will suffice: 1) “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him” (John 3:36 — NASB). If the negative of “believes” (36a) equals “not obey” (36b), then it follows that the positive of “believes” involves obedience.
        2) “But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “LORD, who has believed our report?” (Rom 10:16). Again, like our previous verse, the words “obeyed” (16a) and “believed” (16b) are being used interchangeably, because the former is the fulfillment of the latter. As Jesus said, “.. but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

        Hope this helps.

      19. Aidan McManus writes, “Faith without repentance is practically “faith alone,” unfruitful, and just a head knowledge.”

        So, we see that Hebrews 11 defines “faith” as assurance and conviction and assurance and conviction naturally affects specific outcomes (e.g, repentance, obedience). Whether people distinguish faith as head and heart faith or true faith or saving faith, everyone recognizes that the faith of which Paul speaks when he says, “faith comes by hearing,” or “by grace…through faith,” or “a man is justified by faith,” or ‘only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham,” etc,. he speaks of that unique faith that can only be given to people by God.

      20. rhutchin
        everyone recognizes that the faith of which Paul speaks when he says, “faith comes by hearing,” or “by grace…….. he speaks of that unique faith that can only be *GIVEN TO* people by God.

        br.d
        Again – treating faith as a commodity – like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari – which people don’t inherently have – is an aspect unique to Calvinist doctrine. Because it fits well into Calvin’s system of square-circles, married-bachelors, and true-as-if-not-true.

        For the Non-Calvinist faith in all of its various forms is a God-given faculty – an integral part of human cognition within all people at birth.
        As Jesus stated concerning little children – “such is the kingdom of God”.

        So the Non-Calvinist simply turns that faculty of child-like faith which he already has, towards the person and work of Jesus Christ, in accordance with divine expectations.

        And all of the wonderful gifts of grace mentioned in scripture are thus made available to the believer.

        No special grandiose boast-worthy theologian (and his system) standing between God and man is needed.

      21. BR.D Well said: “So the Non-Calvinist simply turns that faculty of child-like faith which he already has, towards the person and work of Jesus Christ, in accordance with divine expectations.”
        GA
        Rom. 4:21 Does not use the word faith but instead it describes what faith is -being fully persuaded that what God has promised He is able and WILL do – Faith is simply resting in God’s Word, it is trusting Him – like a child trusts.

        Rom 4:21  And being fully persuaded that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform. 
        Rom 4:22  And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. 

        A child can do this, grown men have a harder time:
        “Yet the simplest of all matters—believing in Christ crucified, accepting His finished salvation, being nothing and letting Him be everything, doing nothing, but trusting to what He has done—I could not get hold of it.” C.S.

      22. GA: “Rom. 4:21 Does not use the word faith but instead it describes what faith is -being fully persuaded that what God has promised He is able and WILL do …”

        This agrees with Hebrews 11, “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”

        Then, “– Faith is simply resting in God’s Word, it is trusting Him – like a child trusts.”

        One must first have faith and Paul says, “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” A person who has faith then trusts God – like a child trusts.

      23. rhutchin
        One must first have faith and Paul says, “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” A person who has faith then trusts God – like a child trusts.

        br.d
        Again – treating faith as a commodity – like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari – which people don’t inherently have – is an aspect unique to Calvinist doctrine. Because it fits well into Calvin’s system of square-circles, married-bachelors, and true-as-if-not-true.

        Looks like – as you have stated in previous posts: “The Calvinist has staked his claim”.

        But that is in fact all it is – because scripture does not EXPLICITLY state that the human faculty of faith in its various forms – is not an inherent God-given part of human cognition which all humans have by birth.

        But obviously Calvinism needs it to be that.

      24. br.d writes:
        “Again – treating faith as a commodity – like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari – which people don’t inherently have – is an aspect unique to Calvinist doctrine. Because it fits well into Calvin’s system of square-circles, married-bachelors, and true-as-if-not-true.

        Looks like – as you have stated in previous posts: “The Calvinist has staked his claim”.

        But that is in fact all it is – because scripture does not EXPLICITLY state that the human faculty of faith in its various forms – is not an inherent God-given part of human cognition which all humans have by birth.

        But obviously Calvinism needs it to be that.”

        This is what it boils down to: Calvinism NEEDS it to be that.

        Because – and I’m just going to say it straight out – Calvinism is the anti-Christ gospel. The true gospel of Christ, which all of his life, words and works demonstrated, was set forth in Jesus’ words in John 3:16:

        ‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        In that same passage Jesus explains to Nicodemus that it is not the keeping of the law that grants salvation to God’s specially chosen few, but that the whole purpose of the law had been twisted and distorted into something it was never intended to be. Calvinism is essentially a remake of that same life-withholding deception, using the same means of twisting the words of God into something he never said, and distorting the promise of life into an ugly, limited shadow of truth.

        The Judaist gospel declared that:

        ‘God so loved Israel, his chosen people, that he gave them the law so that they alone might not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        Jesus came to assert that this was false, and set forth the true gospel, once again, contained in John 3:16:

        ‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        Calvinism asserts that Jesus’ gospel was false, that God did not love and desire to save all men, and reinstitutes the earlier, Judaistic gospel with a twist:

        ‘God so loved the elect, his chosen people, hat he gave them ‘faith’ that they alone might not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        This could also be stated as:

        ‘God so loved himself that he created some people to give him praise and glory, and others to destroy for his own good pleasure. The people themselves mean nothing, but are simply tools used by God for his own glory.’

        Demonically inspired Calvinism simply transforms the commodity needed to save the new ‘chosen people’, given to a select, prechosen few, from ‘the law’ to ‘faith’. The formula remains the same, but simply substitutes a different commodity for ‘the law’. Calvinism is the same belief system that the Judaists had, which was denounced as false by Jesus, Paul and the other apostles, only exchanging ‘the elect’ for ‘Israel’ and ‘faith as a commodity’ for ‘the law’.

        In spite of making much of ‘faith alone’, it is merely a clanging symbol. Their ‘faith’ is simply the new ‘law’ – the one and only life-giving commodity, given by God to a select chosen few. This, of course, is what Jesus came to denounce and destroy.

        There are no ‘chosen people’, who alone have been given privileges and access to God. There is no predetermined, limited set of persons who were created to be God’s people, while all others were simply their slaves and God’s fuel for a magnificent final conflagration. The true gospel of Jesus Christ declares, with no semantic trickery, that God loves all men, Jew and Gentile, male and female, slave and free – exactly the same, and desired to offer each and every one forgiveness of sin (as the ceremonial sacrificial system illustrated) and everlasting life, as promised in Genesis 3.

      25. TS00 writes, “The true gospel of Christ, which all of his life, words and works demonstrated, was set forth in Jesus’ words in John 3:16:
        ‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        This is Calvinism – only those who believe have eternal life. This raises the question: How does one come to believe?

        Then, “Calvinism asserts…‘God so loved the elect, his chosen people, hat he gave them ‘faith’ that they alone might not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        Calvinism asserts, “For God so loved both Jews and non-Jews, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whatever Jews and non-Jews believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’ The Calvinist adds, “The Jew or non-Jew who believes in Christ is not judged; the Jew or non-Jew who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and both Jews and non-Jews loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil.

        Then, “There are no ‘chosen people’, who alone have been given privileges and access to God.”

        According to Paul in Romans 9, “they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.” Also, in Galatians, “Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.” So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.”

      26. rhutchin
        Calvinism asserts, “For God so loved both Jews and non-Jews, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whatever Jews and non-Jews believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

        br.d
        Right – the whole population of humans on planet earth is comprised of Jews and Gentiles.
        And Calvin’s god desires *ALL* of whom he saves to be Jews and Gentiles. :-]

      27. Right? I can never quite get the making an argument for Jews and Gentiles, which, would be all people. Except, of course, in an attempt to slyly do away with the ‘all’ by pretending that the change of terms somehow nullifies it. However, it does not. ‘All’ or ‘not only Jews but also Gentiles’ still encompasses all, so you are left with the same statement – God desires that ‘all’ or ‘all, whether Jew or Gentile’ be saved.

      28. Right
        Calvin’s gods desires a FEW (saved) from the worlds population of Jews and Gentiles to *ALL* be Jews and Gentiles
        He also desires the REST of the worlds population of Jews and Gentiles (for eternal torment in the lake of fire) to also *ALL* be Jews and Gentiles.

        Theres some interesting desires goin on there! :-]

      29. TS00 writes, “‘All’ or ‘not only Jews but also Gentiles’ still encompasses all, so you are left with the same statement – God desires that ‘all’ or ‘all, whether Jew or Gentile’ be saved.”

        All collectively as groups (Jews and non-Jews) but not all individually. God can say that He loves the world (consisting of Jews and non-Jews) and still say that He gave His son so that only some people (from among Jews and non-Jews) would receive eternal life.

      30. rhutchin
        God can say that He loves the world (consisting of Jews and non-Jews)and still say that He gave His son so that only some people (from among Jews and non-Jews) would receive eternal life.

        br.d
        Notice the euphemistic language designed to make Calvinism’s world of GOOD-EVIL look like its only good.

        Here we have GOOD-EVIL love.

        Calvin’s god CAN SAY that he loves the vast majority of creatures he designs for eternal torment in the lake of fire.
        Its just a slightly different definition of love.

        Who said – Calvinism is 90% SEMANTIC WORD GAMES! :-]

      31. rhutchin
        “God can say that He loves the world (consisting of Jews and non-Jews)and still say that He gave His son so that only some people (from among Jews and non-Jews) would receive eternal life.”

        Note rh conveniently forgot to mention that the rest of the world God ‘loves’ has been created deliberately for destruction or eternal conscious torment, depending on your viewpoint.

        Calvi-god can SAY that he loves the world, but it is a lie; he loves only a very select few, just as the Judaists believe/believed. In fact, much of what Calvi-god says is a lie, and one would be a fool to trust someone who enjoys annihilating people.

        The true God not only says that he loves the world, but demonstrated it and continues to proclaim it through his word and those who properly teach it. You can keep Calvi-god’s love – it isn’t worth having.

      32. Very true!
        Divine love is one of the places where we see a whole lot of Calvinist DOUBLE-SPEAK.

        Calvinist A.W. Pink for example says:
        “God DOES NOT LOVE EVERYBODY.”

        But then we have young Reformed pastors asking Dr. D.A. Carson : “Do you feel free to tell unbelievers that god loves them?”
        And his response:
        I have no hesitation in answering…Of course I tell the unconverted that god loves them”

        Yeh right – like the boy who takes a girl to lovers lane and tells her he loves her! :-]

        Dr. Jerry Walls sums up Calvinism’s use of DOUBLE-SPEAK
        -paraphrased quote:
        ” his is one of the ways the Calvinism maintains an APPEARNCE of crediblity.
        By using the language of univeral divine love in a way which their theology does not support.
        If Calvinsts didn’t engage in misleading rhetoric – Calvinism would lose credbility in 2 years.
        Calvinism stays afloat by Calvinists crafting language that their theology doesn’t underwrite.”

        The fact that Calvinists rely so heavily on DOUBLE-SPEAK serves as a RED-FLAG that they internally recognize the problems observers see in their system – but which they are unable to acknowledge.

        Where does scripture teach – that the so called TRUE GOSPEL – is communicated using DOUBLE-SPEAK?

      33. BrD,

        God Doesn’t Love Everyone?

        No one can explain it better than the Pied Piper….

      34. TS00 writes, “Note rh conveniently forgot to mention that the rest of the world God ‘loves’ has been created deliberately for destruction or eternal conscious torment, depending on your viewpoint.”

        Fine. What do you think happens to the unbelievers?

        Then, ‘Calvi-god can SAY that he loves the world, but it is a lie; he loves only a very select few,..”

        Yes, the believers. So, does God love those unbelievers that He could save but does not?

        Then, “The true God not only says that he loves the world, but demonstrated it and continues to proclaim it through his word and those who properly teach it. ”

        That’s what Calvinist say also. But of course, you mean that God loves each and every person the same way regardless whether He saves them or not. If one is not one whom God saves, I suspect he is not impressed with God’s love for him.

      35. TS00
        “Note rh conveniently forgot to mention that the rest of the world God ‘loves’ has been created deliberately for destruction or eternal conscious torment, depending on your viewpoint.”

        rhutchin
        Fine. What do you think happens to the unbelievers?

        br.d
        Notice the distancing language here – “what happens to them” rather than what Calvin’s god designs for them.

        TS00
        ‘Calvi-god can SAY that he loves the world, but it is a lie; he loves only a very select few,..”

        rhutchin
        Yes, the believers. So, does God love those unbelievers that He could save but does not?

        br.d
        More distancing language – “he just happens to not save the MANY” rather than he designs the vast majority for eternal torment in a lake of fire for his good pleasure.

        TS00
        “The true God not only says that he loves the world, but demonstrated it and continues to proclaim it through his word and those who properly teach it. ”

        rhutchin
        That’s what Calvinist say also. But of course, you mean that God loves each and every person the same way regardless whether He saves them or not. If one is not one whom God saves, I suspect he is not impressed with God’s love for him.

        br.d
        Right – John Calvin’s -quote “LARGE MIXTURE” of Calvinists whom Calvin’s god designed for eternal torment in a lake of fire after having deceived them into believing they were elect are all sitting in the boiling lake of lava having a theoretical discussion about divine love.

        One says to the other: I’m sure glad Calvin’s god loves me – whatever that means! :-]

        When the dividing line between good and evil doesn’t exist (as it is in the Gnostic system) – love just simply looks like evil.

      36. br.d writes, “Notice the distancing language here – “what happens to them” rather than what Calvin’s god designs for them.”

        Phrase it any way you want. What happens to them?

      37. rhutchin
        br.d writes, “Notice the distancing language here – “what happens to them” rather than what Calvin’s god designs for them.”

        Phrase it any way you want. What happens to them?

        br.d
        At the foundation of the world Calvin’s god designed them for eternal torment in a lake of fire for his good pleasure.
        What happens to them is whatever he FIRST-CONCEIVES and then RENDERS-CERTAIN.

        That’s what happens to Calvin’s -quote “LARGE MIXTURE” of Calvinists whom Calvin’s god deceived into believing they were elect.
        I can see how that would make a Calvinist see Calvin’s god’s love as disturbing.
        So the distancing language would be quite natural for that individual.

      38. As opposed to the true gospel, which assures all men that they need not perish, if they simply put their trust in God. Note the ENORMOUS difference – no surefire hellfire, no hopeless, chosen to perish sinners without hope in the world:

        “Ho, every one who thirsts,
        come to the waters;
        and he who has no money,
        come, buy and eat . . .
        Seek the Lord while he may be found,
        call upon him while he is near;
        let the wicked forsake his way,
        and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
        let him return to the Lord, that he may have mercy on him,
        and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.” Is 55, 1a, 6-7

        Who may come? All who thirst. Surely only the thirsty elect? No, the wicked, the unrighteous – which is all men – who are willing to forsake their wicked thoughts and ways and return to the Lord. How marvelous is the true gospel. How ugly and unsatisfying are all false gospels, such as Calvinism.

      39. rhutchin writes:
        “If one is not one whom God saves, I suspect he is not impressed with God’s love for him.”

        Ah, you are not far from the truth. Indeed, it is those who are not impressed with, reject or disbelieve God’s love that leads any to be lost. It is not that the love does not exist, but that the individual does not believe in it.

      40. Since the Calvinist has no real knowledge of what KIND of love Calvin’s god has for him – he only speaks of divine love as a theoretical concept. A love which is half good and half evil. And which half is intended for him – he doesn’t know.

      41. TS00 writes, “it is those who are not impressed with, reject or disbelieve God’s love that leads any to be lost. It is not that the love does not exist, but that the individual does not believe in it.”

        I agree. Such a person lacks faith and that faith can only come through the hearing of the gospel.

      42. br.d writes, “the whole population of humans on planet earth is comprised of Jews and Gentiles.’

        Very astute!!!

        Then, “And Calvin’s god desires *ALL* of whom he saves to be Jews and Gentiles”

        Even more astute!!! The key addition – Gentiles. This was the mystery revealed by Paul, ” you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets:that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel,”

      43. br.d
        “the whole population of humans on planet earth is comprised of Jews and Gentiles.’

        rhutchin
        Very astute!!!

        br.d
        Yes – that’s exactly the irony in the Calvinist interpretation of *ALL* in that verse.

        And Calvin’s god desires *ALL* of whom he saves (from the world population of Jews and Gentiles) to be Jews and Gentiles”

        rhutchin
        Even more astute!!!

        br.d
        Yes – again – that the irony in the Calvinist interpretation of *ALL* in that verse.

        rhutchin
        The key addition – Gentiles. This was the mystery revealed by Paul, ”

        br.d
        If we are using the term “mystery” as per its modern definition – the fact of God’s desire for the nations of the earth was well documented throughout the whole of the OT. And is declared again at the birth of Jesus.

        1) God told Abraham “in you and through your offspring I will bless ALL OF THE FAMILIES OF THE EARTH.
        2) God told Israel at mount Sinai “You shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED IN ALL THE EARTH
        3) And Joshua proclaimed “God did this so that ALL THE PEOPLES OF THE EARTH might know that the hand of the LORD.
        4) And the Psalmist says: “ALL THE ENDS OF THE EARTH will remember and turn to the LORD
        5) And Isaiah says “The Lords Temple – ALL OF THE NATIONS shall stream into it.
        6) And Jesus says: “go into ALL THE NATIONS baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

        So If we are using the term “mystery” as per its modern definition – something that is well known isn’t much of a mystery.

        But that God would send his own beloved son to suffer and die on a cross and take upon himself the sins of the world – not that’s different.

        As N.T. Wright explains:

        “Paul believes that the ultimate dramatic apocalypse, the great unveiling of all God’s mysteries, the full disclosure of God’s secret plan, has already come about in and through the events concerning the Messiah, Jesus, particularly through his death and resurrection.

        In particular, of course, Paul is eager to explain in many passages the way in which God’s long and many-staged plan of salvation has come to fruition. One of the things which is unveiled is how the covenant plan is worked out. How God has at last done what he said he would do, even though it doesn’t look like what anyone thought it would.”

      44. rhutchin: “The key addition – Gentiles. This was the mystery revealed by Paul, ”
        br.d: “If we are using the term “mystery” as per its modern definition”

        Obviously, given that I cited Paul, we are using mystery as Paul uses it and not per its modern definition. Stay focused.

        As N.T. Wright explains:

        “Paul believes that the ultimate dramatic apocalypse, the great unveiling of all God’s mysteries, the full disclosure of God’s secret plan, has already come about in and through the events concerning the Messiah, Jesus, particularly through his death and resurrection.

        In particular, of course, Paul is eager to explain in many passages the way in which God’s long and many-staged plan of salvation has come to fruition. One of the things which is unveiled is how the covenant plan is worked out. How God has at last done what he said he would do, even though it doesn’t look like what anyone thought it would.”

        A good illustration of this is found in Romans 9, “it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, “In Isaac your seed shall be called.”That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.”

      45. rhutchin
        the key addition – Gentiles. This was the mystery revealed by Paul, ”

        br.d
        “If we are using the term “mystery” as per its modern definition”

        rhutchin
        Obviously, given that I cited Paul, we are using mystery as Paul uses it and not per its modern definition. Stay focused.

        br.d
        Recognizing how Calvinists shift definitions for words is staying focused. :-]

      46. br.d writes, “Again – treating faith as a commodity – like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari – which people don’t inherently have – is an aspect unique to Calvinist doctrine.”

        Calvinism says that no one is born with an inherent assurance and conviction of the gospel and that this can only come through the hearing oft he gospel. You differ on this point. That is fine as it distinguishes your philosophy from Calvinism.

        Then, “But that is in fact all it is – because scripture does not EXPLICITLY state that the human faculty of faith in its various forms – is not an inherent God-given part of human cognition which all humans have by birth.”

        Scripture does explicitly tell us that faith comes from hearing the gospel and that is the only faith that matters.

      47. br.d
        Again – treating faith as a commodity – like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari – which people don’t inherently have – is an aspect unique to Calvinist doctrine.”

        rhutchin
        Calvinism says that no one is born with an inherent assurance and conviction of the gospel and that this can only come through the hearing oft he gospel. You differ on this point. That is fine as it distinguishes your philosophy from Calvinism.

        br.d
        The understanding that humans are born with an inherent faculty for faith – and a so called “inherent assurance” are two distinctly different things. To conflate the two is IRRATIONAL.

        So thank you for another example of Calvinism’s square-circles, married-bachelors, and true-AS-IF-false.

        br.d
        Then, “But that is in fact all it is – because scripture does not EXPLICITLY state that the human faculty of faith in its various forms – is not an inherent God-given part of human cognition which all humans have by birth.”

        rhutchin
        Scripture does explicitly tell us that faith comes from hearing the gospel and that is the only faith that matters.

        br.d
        Sure – and faith in the law of non-contradiction – (the universal principle – which states that contradictory propositions cannot both be true in the same sense at the same time) also comes from hearing.

        The Calvinist may constantly need to get around this principle – but constantly doing so simply shows his condition. :-]

      48. Thanks GraceAdict! Nice affirmation and a quote from C.S. Lewis

        On why Calvinists have adopted the idea of faith being something external which must be transferred into a person – I’m wondering if that aspect of their doctrine is a derivative of the Catholic sacraments of infant baptism and transubstantiation.

        N.T. Wright – says John Calvin was a Catholic with a small “c”.

        And in the Reformed Heidelberg Catechism we have statements like these:
        -quote
        Not only those that do actually profess faith in, and obedience unto Christ, but also the infants of one, or both, believing parents, are to be baptized. …… Dispensed by a minister of the word lawfully ordained.

        The EFFICACY of baptism is not tied to that moment of time wherein it is administered; yet, not withstanding, by the right of this ordinance, the grace promised is not only offered, but REALLY EXHIBITED, AND **CONFERRED**, BY THE HOLY GHOST to such (whether of age or infants)….-unquote

        Here we have strangely muddled language.
        Where on the one hand baptism is only symbolic.
        But there are also inferences of a supernatural EFFICACY **CONFERRED** to the infant by virtue of a ritual.

        Adherence to Theological Determinism doesn’t require this.
        So I’m wondering if that aspect of Calvinist thinking is a hold-over derivative of Catholic mysticism – similar to transubstantiation.

      49. br.d writes, ‘For the Non-Calvinist faith in all of its various forms is a God-given faculty…”

        The Calvinist goes with Paul on this, “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

      50. br.d
        ‘For the Non-Calvinist faith in all of its various forms is a God-given faculty…”

        rhutchin
        The Calvinist goes with Paul on this, “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

        br.d
        No problem if that’s what Calvinists want to claim.
        And the Non-Calvinist can claim he goes with the whole of scripture without needing to stretch the meanings of a few words within a few proof-text verses – forcing them to conform to a system.

      51. br.d writes, ‘the Non-Calvinist can claim he goes with the whole of scripture…”

        LOL!!! Says the man unable to provide a single citation of Scripture in support of his position.

      52. br.d
        the Non-Calvinist can claim he goes with the whole of scripture…”

        rhutchin
        LOL!!! Says the man unable to provide a single citation of Scripture in support of his position.

        br.d
        One does not need to provide a single citation from scripture to prove the earth is flat – when there are none!

        The Non-Calvinist has the benefit of not having to twist the meanings of words within one or two verses out of the whole of scripture.

        Since scripture does not EXPLICITLY state that humans are *NOT* born with an inherent God-given faculty of faith.
        And since the whole of scripture instead presents a consistent divine expectation towards it.

        The Non-Calvinist is additionally free from the IRRATIONAL and UNETHICAL.
        A deity who does not permit creatures to have – and then punish them for what he does not permit.

        So all-in-all the Non-Calvinist is in a much better position not trying to pull IRRATIONAL rabbits out of chopped up bible verses. :-]

      53. rhutchin: LOL!!! Says the man unable to provide a single citation of Scripture in support of his position.
        br.d: The Non-Calvinist has the benefit of not having to twist the meanings of words within one or two verses out of the whole of scripture.

        LOL!!!! And apparently the benefit of not having to cite Scriptures in support of their philosophy.

      54. rhutcnin
        LOL!!! Says the man unable to provide a single citation of Scripture in support of his position.

        br.d
        The Non-Calvinist has the benefit of not having to twist the meanings of words within one or two verses out of the whole of scripture.

        rhutcnin
        LOL!!!! And apparently the benefit of not having to cite Scriptures in support of their philosophy.

        br.d
        All philosophical propositions have LOGICAL consequences.
        For example – the proposition 2×3=6 has a few right off the bat.
        1) It cannot be both TRUE and FALSE at the same time
        2) It LOGICALLY follows 6/3=2
        3) It LOGICALLY follows 6/2=3

        The philosophy of Theological Causal Divine Determinism (aka Calvinism) also has its own LOGICAL consequences.

        The fact that Calvinists are always looking for way to make its propositions both TRUE and FALSE at the same time serve as a RED-FLAGS.

        For example:
        The fact that Calvinists assert “mere permission” does not exist – but then craft statements *AS-IF* it does

        The fact that Calvinists have the sacred belief that ALL things are determined in every party – but then go about their office *AS-IF* that sacred belief is FALSE.

        All of Calvinism’s IRRATIONAL RED-FLAGS are eventually highlighted here!
        Thank the Lord for SOT101! :-]

      55. br.d writes, “The philosophy of Theological Causal Divine Determinism (aka Calvinism) also has its own LOGICAL consequences.”

        LOL!!!! A statement primed for linking to Scripture – yet, again no Scripture. Never any Scripture.

      56. br.d
        The philosophy of Theological Causal Divine Determinism (aka Calvinism) also has its own LOGICAL consequences.”

        rhutchin
        LOL!!!! A statement primed for linking to Scripture – yet, again no Scripture. Never any Scripture.

        br.d
        Well – its the Calvinist’s theology – and Calvinists probably have more than one obscure proof-text verse they can contort – sufficient to fit into it.

      57. Hi Aidan! Where in Ireland? I lived there in Killarney with wife and children from 84-96.

        Obeying the Son and obeying the gospel are the same thing… but that obedience is to the command to trust Him… not to obeying commands concerning works or sacraments to receive more salvation grace. Right?

        The salvation grace is the indwelling righteous life of Christ which is already received in the new birth through faith. The salvation is then worked out through faith by obeying Christ out of a motive of love and thanksgiving and not with any motive of earning more saving grace or preserving the gift of salvation already given.

      58. Hi Rhutchin, it is right that we should know where our faith comes from, and what it is based on.

        FAITH “THROUGH” THE WORD:
        Consider the following examples of how God uses His word to accomplish His purpose in the hearts of men. 1) “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). Obviously, God being the source of His word (2 Tim 3:16,17), it is the instrument by which He effects faith in the hearts of men. 2) “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”(Heb 4:12). In this we see God’s word being compared to a double-edged sword which is able to, pierce into the innermost parts of a man in order to judge him.

        This explains how the Spirit works . 3) ” And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God..”(Eph 6:17). Notice that the word of God is used as the sword or instrument of the Spirit. God accomplishes His desire to save men through His word, (Isa. 55:11). 4) “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age..”(Titus 2:11,12). Even the grace of God instructs us through “the gospel of the grace of God” ( Acts 20:24), for it is “the word of His grace, which is able to build you up..”(Acts 20:32).
        And so, it is through the gospel of His grace that men are saved through faith, which comes through the word of God.

        Hopefully this helps.

      59. Rhutchin, God wants every person to be saved. He shows no partiality to no one. Please note the following verses:
        “Opening his mouth, Peter said: “I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality, but in every nation the man who fears Him and does what is right is welcome to Him”(Acts 10:34-35). Notice that in every nation the one who fears Him… is welcome to Him. God regards partiality as sin (Jas 2:9). Furthermore, “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent,..(Acts 17:30). God wants all everywhere to repent , He shows no partiality.

        He makes no distinction among men: “For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.”(Rom. 10: 12,13). God who shows no partiality and makes no distinction is rich to all who call upon Him. Notice what Paul asks, “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?(V.14)” Does God want these to be saved? If He didn’t, then why is he asking “How shall they call on Him, and how shall they believe, and how shall they hear?” It’s obvious that God wants them to be saved! And so he sent out “preachers” (vss. 14,15) so that they would be able to hear, believe, and call on His name.

        But then comes the cry in (v. 16); “But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “LORD, who has believed our report?”(v.16). Notice that they were all expected to obey the gospel, but not all did! So Paul asks the obvious question: Perhaps they didn’t hear? “But I say, have they not heard? Yes indeed:
        “Their sound has gone out to all the earth,
        And their words to the ends of the world.” (v.18)
        Paul’s answer is an emphatic “yes indeed” the gospel message went out to all the earth. Therefore, they had heard and had no excuse for not obeying the gospel. And he tells us that it was mostly his own people who rejected that gospel call: But to Israel he says:

        “All day long I have stretched out My hands
        To a disobedient and contrary people.” (vs.21).

        God wanted all to hear and obey the gospel, He even stretched out His hands to His own people, but many chose not to come. And so, Romans 10 is actually teaching the very opposite to Calvinism.

        Hopefully this will be of help.

      60. Sorry Brian, I hadn’t seen your responses until after I had sent mine. Hopefully, I will be able to reply to you sometime Thursday or Friday. Looks like you have some good comments there.

        Thanks,
        Aidan.

      61. Hey Brian! I live in a town called Newbridge, just outside Dublin. You lived in a nice part of the country, what were you doing here?
        I agree with you wholeheartedly that faith is not a ” meritorious work of obedience, nor does it produce meritorious works of obedience for salvation..” Faith involving obedience for salvation does not by default make that faith “meritorious.” Likewise, repentance unto salvation ( Luke 13:3,5), which involves turning from disobedience to obedience, is not by default “meritorious”. Faith and repentance can only become meritorious if the motive of the heart is to earn our salvation, or seek the approval of men (cf. Mat. 6:1-18). This should never be an issue for those who understand that Jesus is Lord, and that eternal life is found in no on else but Him . Again, the following example should suffice: “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him” (John 3:36 — NASB). Notice that this verse teaches clearly ‘how’ we are to avail of that life, namely, by believing in Him. But it also defines clearly what saving faith must involve.

        “He who believes in the Son — has eternal life” (36a) ” but he who does not obey the Son — will not see life” (36b). Notice: (“believes in the Son”…. life) BUT (“not obey the Son”…. will not see life) which shows that obedience is inherent in the word “faith”. I know that this might not be popular, but it is precisely what this and other verses teach.

      62. Aidan, I was involved in a church planting work in Killarney. It is called Grace Baptist Church today. We loved living in Kerry!

        And you may want to look up the word “obey” in John 3:36. It is not from the normal word for obey in Greek, but has to do with being inwardly persuaded.

      63. Brian
        John 3:36. – has to do with being inwardly persuaded

        br.d
        Similar to ἀπειθούντων in Romans 15:31 ?

      64. THAYER’S LEXICON

        ἀπειθέω, -ῶ; imperfect ἠπείθουν; 1 aorist ἠπείθησα; to be ἀπειθής (which see); not to allow oneself to be persuaded; not to comply
        with;
        a. to refuse or withhold belief (in Christ, in the gospel; opposed to πιστεύω): τῷ υἱῷ, John 3:36; τῷ λόγῳ, 1 Peter 2:8; 1 Peter 3:1; absolutely of those who reject the gospel, [R. V. to be disobedient; cf. b.]: Acts 14:2; Acts 17:5 [Rec.]; Acts 19:9; Romans 15:31; 1 Peter 2:7 (T Tr WH ἀπιστοῦσιν).
        b. to refuse belief and obedience: with the dative of thing or of person, Romans 2:8 (τῇ ἀληθείᾳ); Rom 11:30f (τῷ θεῷ); 1 Peter 4:17; absolutely, Romans 10:21 (Isaiah 65:2); Hebrews 3:18; Hebrews 11:31; 1 Peter 3:20.

        VINE’S

        Disobedience, Disobedient:

        akin to A, No. 1, and B, “to refuse to be persuaded, to refuse belief, to be disobedient,” is translated “disobedient,” or by the verb “to be disobedient,” in the RV of Act 14:2 (AV, “unbelieving”), and Act 19:9 (AV, “believed not”); it is absent from the most authentic mss. in Act 17:5; in Jhn 3:36 “obeyeth not,” RV (AV, “believeth not”); in Rom 2:8 “obey not;” in Rom 10:21, “disobedient;” in Rom 11:30, 31, “were disobedient” (AV, “have not believed”); so in Rom 15:31; Hbr 3:18; 11:31; in 1Pe 2:8, “disobedient;” so in 1Pe 3:20; in 1Pe 3:1; 4:17, “obey not.”

        NASB TRANSLATION (Just a few verses)

        John 3:36 “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey G544 the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

        Rom. 2:8 but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey G544 the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.

        Rom 10:21 But as for Israel He says, “ALL THE DAY LONG I HAVE STRETCHED OUT MY HANDS TO A DISOBEDIENT G544 AND OBSTINATE PEOPLE.”

        Rom 11:30 For just as you once were disobedient G544 to God, but now have been shown mercy because of their disobedience,

        Rom 11:31 so these also now have been disobedient, G544 that because of the mercy shown to you they also may now be shown mercy.

        1 Pet 2:8 and,
        “A STONE OF STUMBLING AND A ROCK OF OFFENSE”;
        for they stumble because they are disobedient G544 to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed.

        1 Pet 3:20 who once were disobedient, G544 when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water.

        1 Pet 4:17 For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do G544 not obey G544 the gospel of God?

        Several other translations also translate John 3:36 as “who does not obey the Son”. I do realize that this is a person who refuses to be persuaded, who refuses to believe, who is obstinate and disobedient. As I said this is precisely what the word inheres. Concerning it’s positive counterpart “peitho” Vine says, “The “obedience” suggested is not by submission to authority, but resulting from persuasion.”

      65. Aidan… I’m sure others will benefit from what you shared. But it is evident this word primarily does not mean disobedience but being unpersuaded… though one who is unpersuaded will certainly not obey the command of the gospel – “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.”

        Also remember that there is reformed theology influence in many of our translations and lexicons…with those scholars believing obedience is part of causing sanctification, and for some causing even what they think is unfinished justification. So they see “obey” as the meaning when it is not there as the primary meaning of that word.

      66. BWagner writes: “Also remember that there is reformed theology influence in many of our translations and lexicons…with those scholars believing obedience is part of causing sanctification, and for some causing even what they think is unfinished justification. So they see “obey” as the meaning when it is not there as the primary meaning of that word.”

        GA: I too have found this to be the case…I was surprised at how the ESV translated certain passages until I went and did a little research on WHO had done this translation. (Well that explained a lot)
        Regarding Faith for them faith includes all the works of obedience so when they say Faith they are NOT thinking what the Biblical definition is– They go way beyond that to include all forms of works, obedience, christian living etc… here is an example: Word for Word.
        “The Character of “Saving Faith”: True faith is always accompanied by repentance from sin. Repentance is agreeing with God that you are sinful, confessing your sins to Him, and making a conscious choice to turn from sin and pursue Christ and obedience to Him It isn’t enough to believe certain facts about Christ. Even Satan and his demons believe in the true God but they don’t love and obey Him. True saving faith always responds in obedience.”
        After you read this definition are Left Resting in HIS work already done on your behalf? Are you left LOOKING at Jesus and ALL HE did (that you could NEVER do) and RESTING in His finished work? NO! BUT the Biblical Gospel must do that… Faith in Christ should place ALL the focus on Jesus and His Accomplished work “It is Finished”is the cry from the Cross 2000 years ago. Faith in the Gospel should direct you and I to REST in that Work of HIS already accomplished. Instead with this man-made definition– you are left Looking at YOUR own obedience today and YOUR own quality of Christian Living, YOUR own Love and Holiness. The definition that Calvinists give to “Saving Faith” is NOT a definition that focuses the sinner on the Finished Work of Jesus Christ but instead on the “quality of ones own works” from this day forward. The change of FOCUS is HUGE and has devastating consequences. That definition above comes from JMac. Many Christians run with that definition or one like it, BUT that definition is flat out wrong.
        I think how Paul put it in Romans chapter 4 is very insightful. Notice in v 3 he uses the word faith and in v 21 he is saying the exact same thing but instead states what Faith is: “Being Convinced that what God had promised He was able to perform” – Faith is LOOKING at the ONE who Promised. NOT at ones own works. In the Context of the Gospel- Faith RESTS in His Work Already Accomplished 2000 years ago NOT in what we must Do today and tomorrow. Faith in the Gospel – Looks Back and agrees with God that it is Already Finished on the Cross. Faith takes God at His Word and Rests in that Alone. 2000 years ago God said “It is Finished” Do you believe that? Sola Fide.

        Rom. 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” 4 Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. 5 But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, 6 just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works:

        Some folks desperately want to include WORKS as a condition of salvation and scripture is Clear that it is of Faith and NOT works v5. So what do they have to do? They have to redefine the word “Faith” so that Faith includes all the works they desperately want to smuggle in. Now they can say yes I believe in “Sola Fide” but they have redefined Faith so that it includes all the works scripture says Faith does NOT include. The tactic of redefining words to include what they want it to say is one of the hallmarks of Calvinism.

      67. GraceAdict writes, “Some folks desperately want to include WORKS as a condition of salvation and scripture is Clear that it is of Faith and NOT works v5. So what do they have to do? They have to redefine the word “Faith” so that Faith includes all the works they desperately want to smuggle in.”

        So, are you denying what Paul said in Ephesians 2, “we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them”? Or are you saying that the “good works” do not include obedience?

      68. rh writes:
        “So, are you denying what Paul said in Ephesians 2, “we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them”? Or are you saying that the “good works” do not include obedience?”

        I’ll let GA speak for himself, but many of us would say that the good works prepared for us to do happen as a result of our faith, but are not the grounds of our being declared righteous or forgiven. It seems a mere semantic distinction, but it is so much more. We are not God’s children because we have good works, we have good works because we are God’s children, desiring to please and obey him.

        Luther rejected and desired to cut out the book of James, because James asserted that faith without works was dead. But James was not saying that good works were what saved an individual, but that they were the inescapable result of a man who has truly been born anew seeking to follow God.

      69. TS00 writes, “We are not God’s children because we have good works, we have good works because we are God’s children, desiring to please and obey him.”

        I think that is the position GA is opposing – at least, the expression of that position in translations.

      70. In the Context of talking about Sola Fide – as the Condition for Salvation/being Justified, And that Rom 4 states clearly being Justified is by Faith Apart from works.

        RH writes: So, are you denying what Paul said in Ephesians 2, “we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them”? Or are you saying that the “good works” do not include obedience?

        Calvinists have a problem of keeping Apples and Oranges distinct. They love to mix the two. There are two distinct doctrines that are closely related but cannot be mixed otherwise you end up with error. When you mix the doctrine of Justification as taught in Rom 4 with the Doctrine of Sanctification as taught in Eph 2:10 and say that good works are a necessary condition for Justification you end up with a false gospel. Justification and Sanctification/the Christian Walk – are closely related but they must be kept distinct much like a brother and sister, they are closely related but if you marry a brother and sister then you have something called an Incestuous relationship. NOT meant to be. When Calvinists confuse and conflate Justification and Sanctification they create a relationship that is NOT meant to be.

        Eph 2:10 Starts off with “we ARE God’s Workmanship, created in Christ Jesus” — This is not talking about how to get in Christ, this is one who is ALREADY in Christ – Already sealed, Already given eternal life, Already a Child of God. The question is not how to GET saved…he is already saved. The issue in v 10 is – Since you are already saved, already in Christ, already a new creature you should walk in harmony with your NEW identity.
        Much like:
        Eph 5:8 for at one time you WERE darkness, but now you ARE light in the Lord. Walk as children of light” 
        God resolves the Identity issue first: you were Darkness, you ARE light (this new identity is unchangeable) and only then does He say -Walk in harmony with the New Identity that you ALREADY have-
        Notice what these texts do NOT say: “Walk as a child of light to become a child of the light” or “do good works so that God will make you HIs Workmanship” The New Identity issue is Totally settled once for all BEFORE he says to do good works.
        The reasoning is: “Since you have already been made light/ a new creation now walk in harmony with your NEW identity.”

        Many conflate these two doctrines and there by make the Christian walk/Obedience a Condition FOR Salvation. Biblically the Christian walk is NOT a condition FOR salvation but the expected outworking of one who IS already 100% accepted in the beloved.
        We do NOT work to be accepted but instead we work because we are ALREADY accepted, already sealed, already born again, already a New Creation.
        My obedience or my lack of obedience is in NO way a condition of my Salvation… Piper likes to say “love for God and obedience to God is a secondary condition for final salvation” That statement Nullifies Rom.4 and the True Gospel of Grace…it is Catholic theology without the sacraments. Those who marry these two distinct doctrine are knowingly or unknowingly returning to Rome.
        Carefully read the following verses and do NOT redefine Faith to include the works you want to smuggle in:
        Rom 4:5  And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, 
        Rom 4:6  just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: 

      71. GA writes, “In the Context of talking about Sola Fide – as the Condition for Salvation/being Justified, And that Rom 4 states clearly being Justified is by Faith Apart from works.”

        No, the context was your citation of the Calvinist, ““The Character of “Saving Faith”: True faith is always accompanied by repentance from sin…..True saving faith always responds in obedience.” Of this you said, “The definition that Calvinists give to “Saving Faith” is NOT a definition that focuses the sinner on the Finished Work of Jesus Christ but instead on the “quality of ones own works” from this day forward. The change of FOCUS is HUGE and has devastating consequences.” That points to your misunderstanding of Calvinist doctrine.

        The Calvinist distinguishes between saving faith and false faith by looking to the way faith affects a change in the person’s life. When Romans 4 describes Abraham as believing God, it says, “not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.” Here, we see that Abrsham’s faith affected a change in his mind, “…he did not consider his own body, already dead…,” and behavior, “strengthened in faith,…” How could Abraham be described as “strengthened in faith,” if not through the manner of life he lived – a life lived believing in God’s promises. To the Calvinist, that faith by which one is justified is the same faith by which one lives. The faith by which one is justified is the same faith by which one is sanctified. The Calvinist knows that one is saved by faith alone and then lives by faith – lives a life that marked by repentance and obedience,

      72. rhutchin
        The Calvinist distinguishes between saving faith and false faith by looking to the way faith affects a change in the person’s life.

        br,d
        All except for (as per Calvin) that LARGE MIXTURE of Calvinists whom Calvin’s god deceives into believing they are elect.
        The only change these person’s manifest in their lives – as Calvin says – are changes of -quote “outward appearance”.

        And since every person’s elect status is a SECRET – no Calvinist knows whether or not he or any other Calvinist has that SPECIAL faith which affects a SPECIAL change in his or any other Calvinist’s life – or whether the change he observes is as Calvin says nothing more than an “outward appearance”.

        When push comes to shove – the Calvinist’s conception of salvfific faith is pretty much a doctrinal THEORY.

      73. Both Piper and JMac…teach that works are a condition FOR “final salvation”. At times they may sound like they do not but then they turn around and say things like – the killing of sin, pursuing righteousness, loving God is a secondary condition FOR final salvation- in other words it is NOT sola Fide… Like a lawyer once told me “What the large print giveth the small print taketh away”.

        Now of course I hold to the position that once saved we ought to live in harmony with our new identity and position in Christ…But my success or failure to do so is not a necessary condition FOR being Justified and experiencing as some put it “final salvation”. That is where I differ.
        I am really not sure how one get works/obedience as a condition FOR salvation out of Romans 4, but that has always been, one of the problems with Calvinism. Is it says one thing is true (sola fide) then proceeds to teach just the opposite, while proclaiming they are upholding “Sola Fide”. The system of Double-speak that BR.D refers to.

        Rom 4:1 What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh?
        Rom 4:2 For IF Abraham WAS JUSTIFIED by WORKS justified by works, he has something to BOAST ABOUT , but not before God.
        Rom 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham BELIEVED God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.”
        Rom 4:4 Now to THE ONE WHO WORKS, HIS WAGES are not counted as a gift but as HIS DUE.
        Rom 4:5 And to the one WHO DOES NOT WORK BUT BELIEVES IN HIM who justifies the ungodly, his FAITH is counted as righteousness,
        Rom 4:6 just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom GOD COUNTS RIGHTEOUSNESS APART FROM WORKS:

        Let’s make sure we have captured this before moving on.
        1. If Abraham’s Justification involved works then Abraham has grounds for boasting. v.2
        2. Instead the Scriptures show us that Abraham Believed God and so God credited to him Righteousness, v.3 this was an alien Righteousness, alien to Abraham, that is, it had not been a Righteousness practiced by Abraham. This Righteousness is a gift credited to Abraham’s account, it is a gift given to Abraham by God alone. The Righteousness that was credited to Abraham’s account was NOT a practiced Righteousness by Abraham. It was applied to his account by God alone… inspite of Abraham’s sins and failures.
        3. Now v.5 we see that Belief or Faith is in direct contrast to any kind of works… because it specifically says “who does NOT work BUT Believes” why? Because Faith/Believing is LOOKING to God alone for Him to do what He says He will do. Faith comes to the place of one’s soul RESTING in what God says and that alone. Notice the context v.1-4 is clear NO WORKS of ANY kind practiced by Abraham are allowed entrance. Works of ANY kind are anathema in the context of Justification. This is what our Religiously inclined Flesh hates with a passion.
        4. “God Counts (credits) Righteousness APART from WORKS” v.6 this is called a Blessing. Let’s say I have a debt of -100 billion dollars my account reads negative -100 billion dollars, there is no way I can ever pay that debt, someone comes along and pays the debt on my behalf that brings me to 0.00 but God does way MORE than that, He credits my account with +100 Billion dollars above 0. Spiritually speaking I went from negative -100 Billion to 0.00 and then to +100 Billion PLUS in one swift move totally of God. HE gave me account a positive credit of His Righteousness, even though I did not WORK at ALL. I did nothing to earn it, he simply told me to Trust Him and HE would Do it. That is what v.6 is saying it was APART from WORKS on my part. He decisively paid the debt and credited Righteousness. It was all of Him. Faith LOOKS to Him, depending on Him to do what He says He would do. To the one who does NOT work BUT believes in Him…

        Rom 4:7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered;
        Rom 4:8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”
        Rom 4:9 Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? For we say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness.
        Rom 4:10 How then was it counted to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised.
        Rom 4:11 He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. The purpose was to make him the father of all who believe without being circumcised, so that righteousness would be counted to them as well,

        1. This section addresses those who want to smuggle in at least one work as a condition along side of Faith. Those who say well I do see it is by faith alone but there must be at least one prerequisite “circumcision” they want to say “faith plus just one thing, a one time act, (circumcision) is necessary for receiving that Righteousness credited to your account.” Paul shows that Abraham was NOT circumcised when he had righteousness credited to his account. So NO not even a small, one time, act can be included as a necessary condition for being Eternally declared Righteous. V.9-10
        2. We see in v.11 circumcision was simply an outward sign of a permanent Righteousness already credited to Abraham’s account and Circumcision came 15 years later.

        3. Now a timeline would be helpful in understanding how this actually played out in Abraham’s life.
         Gen. 15:1-6 Abraham is declared righteous for Believing God’s promise and resting in that promise. Faith Alone.
         Gen. 16 more than a year has passed since he believed God and Abraham is tired of waiting so he decides to take things into his own hands and has a child with Hagar. Abe is 86 years old. He was not trusting God’s plan anymore, he had to help out.
         Gen. 17:17 Abraham is 99 years old, 14-15 years after being Justified…Abraham laughs at the Lord when the Lord tells him he is going to have a child by Sarah. Abraham tells the Lord to give up on HIS plan and look instead upon Ishmael and use Ishmael in His plan.
         Gen. 17:24 Abraham is circumcised at least 15-16 years after he is declared Righteous back in Gen.15
         Gen. 18 Angels come and tell Abraham he is going to have a child – this time Sarah laughs. Abraham believes again.
         Gen. 20 – BUT then Abraham goes down to live in Gerar and Abraham is afraid for his own life, he is not trusting God again, so he tells Abimelech king of Gerar that Sarah is his sister. Abraham lets and even indicates that Abimelech should take his wife Sarah as his own. God intervenes in a dream. Not because Abraham is walking in obedience but Because God is Faithful even though Abraham is unfaithful.
         Gen. 21 – Isaac is born. This is the promise that Abraham believed 16-20 years earlier. In the mean time there was lots and lots of unbelief and sins that happened along the way. That is why Rom.4:1-6 is so important to understand correctly. Even Abraham who is the greatest human icon in scripture needs Justification to be totally apart from works, because even his works after believing God and being Justified were riddled with sin, failure, lack of trust and unfaithfulness. No wonder the True Gospel of Grace is such Good news:

        Rom 4:5 And to the one WHO DOES NOT WORK BUT BELIEVES IN HIM who justifies the ungodly, his FAITH is counted as righteousness,
        Rom 4:6 just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom GOD COUNTS RIGHTEOUSNESS APART FROM WORKS:
        Rom 4:7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered;
        Rom 4:8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”

        Nothing in the rest of Romans 4 contradicts what has been laid out here so I will close this long post off with this saying:
        Deserving Justice, Hoping for Mercy, Surprised by GRACE. “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense”

      74. GA writes, “Both Piper and JMac…teach that works are a condition FOR “final salvation”.”

        They teach Paul, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?…Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.” Paul continues that theme in comparing the fruit of the flesh and the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5.

        John continues the argument, “My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin…Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.”

      75. No one denies that people who are ALREADY NEW CREATURES in Christ (by faith alone Rom.4) should walk in newness of life.
        But there is a huge difference in saying “SINCE you are already 100% accepted, SINCE you are already a child of the King NOW walk in harmony with your NEW identity” as opposed to saying: ” You must do this, you must do that for the duration of your life in ORDER to be a Child of the King”
        On the one hand Piper affirms faith alone but what the right hand gives the left hand takes away. Or what my lawyer friend says “What the large print giveth the small print taketh away.”
        Piper: “Sometimes the Bible makes OUR holiness and OUR love for people THE CONDITION of our final salvation. In other words, if we are not holy and not loving, WE WILL NOT BE SAVED at the judgment day” end quote.. Sorry but that is false…. that is a denial of “Sola Fide” you can dance around and redefine terms to try and make it fit but it stands in direct contrast to Rom.4

      76. A form of works salvation in Calvinism takes on its own peculiar shape – as with other aspects of the doctrine.

        Dr. Erich Fromm, Social Psychologist, in his study of Calvinist calls it a “Psychology of CERTAIN-UNCERTAINTY”

        -quote
        One possible way to escape this unbearable state of uncertainty and a paralyzing feeling of one’s own insignificance, is the very trait which became so prominent in Calvinism: the development of a hyper activity and striving for productivity.

        Activity in this sense assumes a COMPULSORY quality: the individual has to be active in order to SUBDUE underlying feelings of doubt and powerlessness.

        This kind of effort and activity works to promote a sense of confidence and conciliation.

        Thus, effort and work, in this sense, assume an entirely IRRATIONAL CHARACTER. They are not to change one’s eternal fate, which is predetermined by God regardless of effort on the part of the individual.

        Human efforts, served only as a means of FORCASTING the predetermined fate; while at the same time, the heightened effort served as an emotional reassurance against an otherwise unbearable underlying feeling of powerlessness. – Page 88 Escape from Freedom
        -end quote

        This allows us to understand why Calvinists read each others behavior patterns using the same process one would use in reading tea leaves.

        They look into the cup of tea leaves (i.e., their behavior patterns) searching for indicators of one’s predestined fate.

      77. Wow! BR.D – I feel like I learn so much from you.
        That quote from: Dr. Erich Fromm, Social Psychologist, about Calvinists “Psychology of CERTAIN-UNCERTAINTY”
        Was so insightful… I have often said that Calvinist do often work hard but it is so often with a judgmental attitude because they are judging other peoples salvation by their works and trying to prove to everyone and themselves that they must be the elect because look at what I AM DOING !!! They don’t seem to really understand Grace though they use the word a lot. thanks again BR.D

      78. Thank you very much GraceAdict!

        Yes – I think Dr. Flowers would say that Calvinists – by clinging to the philosophy of Universal Divine Causal Determinism – force very un-natural things upon themselves.

        And I think if you keep a lookout for it – you will learn to discern a pattern of Gnostic dualism imbedded within Calvinist language.

        There is a now-godly-good, now-godly-evil, alternating emphasis, consistent within Calvinistic language.
        So a recognizable characteristic is the framing of “good-evil” concept pairs – reflecting a Gnostic dualistic cosmos.

        The nature and character of Calvin’s god is “good-evil”.
        He thus predestines some to good and some to evil.

        The Calvinist needs to propagate this system by superimposing in onto scripture – otherwise normal Christians will reject if out of hand. The problem he faces is that within the general narrative of scripture there is a consistent dividing line between good and evil in contrast to the Gnostic dualism in which this dividing line is blurred.

        Within this Gnostic dualism – good and evil are co-equal and co-necessary.
        They are both equal in stature in the process of glorifying Calvin’s god.

        The Calvinist will intuitively try to hide the dualism by putting all his emphasis on the “good” side – while obfuscating the “dark” side.

        This is why they label their system “doctrines of grace”.
        When the truth is – it is simply a “doctrine of good-evil”

      79. BR.D – This is why they label their system “doctrines of grace”.
        Misdirection is what they do best plus maximize the good while hiding the bad and covering the ugly to quote BR.D

        When you truly understand what there system teaches it is a long cry from Doctrines of Grace…it is 10 to 1 Doctrines of God’s wrath and Damnation on ALL by His choice alone except for a select few that He forcibly converts against their wills.
        “Doctrines of Grace” as a label is a great cover for a hideous system that disfigures the Holy and Loving God of the Bible.

      80. Yes – except technically speaking nothing is done against a person’s will – because Calvin’s god is the determiner of every person’s will.

        And that brings up another term: “determine” also used by the Calvinist to equivocate in order to advance *AS-IF* thinking.

        Calvin’s god “determines” all things without exception.
        Which – if we apply math – tells us this leaves nothing left over for the creature to determine.

        And yet in normal vernacular humans are said to “determine” things.
        So the Calvinist can then use the normal vernacular as a camouflage.

        He can say that human’s “determine” the sins they commit.
        But this produces a contradiction – *IF* the term “determine” is used in the same sense.
        Obviously the creature can’t determine [X] if there is no [X] left over for creatures to determine.

        And since Calvin’s god determines every neurological impulse that will ever appear in a person’s brain – it goes without saying that Calvin’s god determines every part of a person’s will – and there is no part of the creature’s will left over for the creature to determine.

        Calvinism and its ancient library of SEMANTIC tricks! :-]

      81. BR.D “Yes – except technically speaking nothing is done against a person’s will – because Calvin’s god is the determiner of every person’s will.”

        GA – Why I used the idea “against their wills” is because, as I understand it…even the elect are born with a heart of stone that can not and will not acknowledge God, so God has to forcibly against their wills take their rebellious heart of stone and change it without their consent or willingness, in fact inspite of their unyielding hatred of God and rebellion toward God He does that BUT then when God has forcibly against their wills changed their heart Now they can do nothing but believe.

      82. Well then we get into the question of whether or not Calvin’s god shifting someone’s will from what he determined it to be prior to POINT [X] – to something else after POINT [X] is a process of doing something against that person’s will.

        Seeing that it is the case that that person’s will was never theirs to determine in the first place – destined to never ever be theirs to determine – it LOGICALLY follows that saying Calvin’s god did something against their will – would be like saying he did something against that will which they never really had.

        In Calvinism their will was never actually theirs – and people don’t really have a will of their own.
        What appears to be their will – is actually Calvin’s god’s will for them manifesting itself through their neurological functionality.

        There is the appearance that people actually have a will of their own – which is a normal conception in the Non-Calvinist world.
        So from that perspective it would seem like something is being done against their will.
        But in the Calvinist world they never actually had a will of their own in the first place.

        Calvin’s god makes all human functionality irresistible!

      83. I had to laugh…because you are correct that the person never really had their will it was God’s will for them. So there really is no such thing as a person having his own will.

      84. This is such an excellent example of how semantic juggling is used to hide Calvinism’s true meanings. Rather than admit that man has no free will, all things are meticulously determined and God unjustly punishes and condemns men over things of which they have no control, Calvinists prefer to slyly slip in a free choice that isn’t free, nor a real choice.

        This is partly to keep people from rejecting a theology that makes God the author of evil, an unjust destroyer and turns life into nothing more than an orchestrated puppet show. Secondly, they need to appear to be in line with scripture, which constantly calls men to use their free will to seek God, turn from wickedness, love others as they ought, etc.

        It all just makes me so tired, as I am not one to play games with people. With a very near family member soon to marry into a staunch Calvinist pastor’s family, my heart is very heavy these days.

      85. I am sorry for you’re distress TS00 – and if in the same circumstance I would be distressed also.

        If I might ask concerning the near family member – is you’re near family member a sister intending to marry a Calvinist man?

      86. Sad to say, a dearly loved daughter. Even though I don’t give them earfuls like you poor folks here (Here people can stop reading whenever they want!), my family knows at least in part some of my concerns with Calvinism. I try not to push my opinions on them unasked. It is something of a third rail that no one wants to touch. Just another example of how Calvinism divides and often separates families.

      87. Sorry for the pain this is causing… will keep you in mind and pray for you…

      88. Yes – sorry to hear that!
        The reason I asked is due to keeping tabs on Calvinist demographics.
        Demographically Calvinism is a religion pretty much exclusive to the white Anglo-Saxon male.

        Its extremely rare for a women to become a Calvinist – except but for the consequence of marrying one.

      89. BR.D — I am rereading your article you sent me. That is really good stuff. IMHO – You need to make that available to the greater public. This helps people understand the language games being played by Calvinism. I feel like so many people don’t really know what to say about Calvinism because they don’t understand the language games that they are playing with us. It is deceitful but this shines the light on HOW they run confusion and misdirection.
        BTW – I found it interesting that Calvin was trained as a lawyer first…he has the ability to make something evil sound good… a master of word games. Calvinism continues in this tradition…BR.D your article is really insightful it helps identify these word games. That would be very worth while for most people. “What the Large print giveth the small print taketh away” This is so true with Calvinism. Thanks again BR.D

      90. My very sincere thanks GraceAdict!
        That means a lot to me!

        And yes – I think its very insightful of you to recognize that Calvin is first and foremost a lawyer and second a theologian.

        You may find it interesting to take a look in Luke 10 – where we have the lawyer who tempted Jesus.
        And what do we find him doing?
        He is manipulating the language of scripture – by changing the definition of the word “neighbor”.
        Same tricks we find at work in Calvinism

        And guess where they get it from! :-]

      91. I see it starting in Gen 3:1  Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast… He said to the woman, “Did God ACTUALLY say…?”
        I feel like Calvinism is always asking the same deceitful question with an intent on misleading the naive about God’s Truth: “Did God ACTUALLY say, He loves the Whole world?” Did God actually say, Jesus died for the sins of the whole world?” Is God actually Light and in Him is no darkness at all? Is God ACTUALLY speaking the TRUTH in His word or is there a secret will that contradicts?
        From Gen 3 to Calvin to Modern day Calvinists the play book is the same…mislead people about the Truth.

      92. GA writes, “I feel like Calvinism is always asking the same deceitful question with an intent on misleading the naive about God’s Truth: “Did God ACTUALLY say, He loves the Whole world?” Did God actually say, Jesus died for the sins of the whole world?””

        The part you leave out, (I suspect, on purpose) is that the Calvinist also provides his definition of “world” to be that encompassing both Jews and non-Jews. I believe it is the non-Calvinist who trusts in Webster’s dictionary for his definition of “world.”

      93. rhutchin
        the Calvinist also provides his definition of “world” to be that encompassing both Jews and non-Jews.

        br.d

        Websters Dictionary: world
        Definition: The earth with its *ALL* of its inhabitants and *ALL* things upon it.

        The only substantive difference in the definition is that Calvinism changes the scope from *ALL* to *SOME*

        Hence we have LIMITED atonement.
        Or in Gnostic terms “Good-evil”

      94. You are right Calvinists redefine all kinds of terms to make it say whatever they want it to say. What good is it to say one “Believes in Sola Scriptura when they give themselves the liberty to redefine the VERY WORDS of Scripture. Sola Scriptura becomes meaningless” No word is off limits for the Calvinist tactic of redefining words. Whole World doesn’t mean whole world it actually means MOST people are excluded… God LOVES All doesn’t mean LOVE all, it actually means God on purpose created most people for the torments of eternal hell, wrath and damnation and this was before anyone had done anything good or bad…He alone decided there would be NO authentic option other than Hell for MOST people. God LOVES all becomes meaningless because of redefining of terms… there isn’t a Single Word in Scripture that is off limits for the Calvinist… The Calvinist holds more strongly to TULIP than the WORD. The WORD is made to fit the man-made scheme called TULIP.
        TULIP makes a god after it’s own image and this god is only found in scripture if you give yourself the liberty to REDEFINE terms. In the Calvinist scheme even “Sola Scriptura does not mean the same thing – it means you can redefine the very words of Scripture to fit TULIP.”

      95. Wonderful! Yes! You’re right on target connecting those dots!

        I’ve said for years – that Calvinism always wins the grand prize for being the most subtle beast in the field of Protestantism.
        A reference to Genesis 3 :-]

      96. Agreed. I have long thought that the twisting of words we see in Calvinism is exactly like we see in Genesis 3. And yet, so many continue to be deceived, as if in complete ignorance of how the devil works. We have been warned, that he disguises himself as an angel of light, and that we will be stunned to discover the true identity of Babylon, which is likely, IMO, the institutional church, which has always replaced the authority of Christ with the authority of men.

      97. TS00 – here’s my take that reflects your observation –
        Who was the first in history to teach some of Calvin’s theology? Guess!

        “Has God said” – Calvinism also questions God’s Word when it says the Scripture is from man’s perspective, full of anthropomorphisms about God in historical narratives. BUT Scripture is God’s revelation, breathed as truth about His real involvement with man.

        “You will not surely die” – Calvinism also gives false assurance when it says that belonging in a covenantal group is a safe bet for everlasting life, though there is a chance that God gave you a temporary faith, “the better to convict” you for His glory. BUT God says assurance comes from the Spirit’s witness that we are His child, a witness that will never fade.

        “You will be like God” – Calvinism also seems to promote feeling godlike, by thinking one is eternally existing as God’s loved one in His mind, and so many others aren’t. That encourages the condemning/damning all those who reject their theology, since they believe God hates those rebels also. BUT God says He holds out His arms to the rebellious all day long.

        Doesn’t Calvinism teach that any Scripture that contradicts their definitions about God’s supposed simplicity, static immutability, and impassibility should be viewed as anthropomorphic?

        Doesn’t Calvinism have difficulty with assurance of salvation because of the premise of supposed evanescent grace?

        Don’t many Calvinists justify their condemnation of non-Calvinists because of Calvin’s/reformed theology’s perspective of magisterial justification for the death penalty for those whom they think are heretics, or that the rejection of their “gospel” affirms that the rebel must be one of the eternally reprobate?

      98. Yes I agree – thank you Brian for taking the time to systematically lay that out again. Well done!

      99. brianwagner writes, “Doesn’t Calvinism teach that any Scripture that contradicts their definitions about God’s supposed simplicity, static immutability, and impassibility should be viewed as anthropomorphic?”

        Either God exercises perfect wisdom in making decisions or He does not. Either God has a perfect understanding of all things or He does not. Either God has a perfect knowledge of future events or He does not. Either God is God or He is br.d’s god.

      100. brianwagner
        “Doesn’t Calvinism teach that any Scripture that contradicts their definitions about God’s supposed simplicity, static immutability, and impassibility should be viewed as anthropomorphic?”

        rhutchin
        Either God exercises perfect wisdom in making decisions or He does not.

        br.d
        Ignores the question

        rhutchin
        Either God has a perfect understanding of all things or He does not.

        br.d
        Ignores the question

        rhutchin
        Either God has a perfect knowledge of future events or He does not.

        br.d
        Ignores the question

        rhutchin
        Either God is God or He is br.d’s god.

        br.d
        Ignores the question and makes a claim void of evidence – but not short on imagination :-]

      101. Either the future is set to work out one way or the Scripture is true and the future is not all set. And of course God never will know any lie as true!

      102. brianwagner writes, “Either the future is set to work out one way or the Scripture is true and the future is not all set.”

        If the future is not set in God’s mind then He does not understand the ramifications of past and present events into the future. When God opened the gate for Satan to enter the garden or did nothing as Joseph was sold into slavery, God had perfect understanding of all that would transpire because He knew how He would direct those events to the conclusion He wanted. If the future is not set, we have br.d’s god who is an empty shell of the Biblical God. Let us know when you can explain how God can have perfect understanding of all events and the future not be set.

      103. It is a false dichotomy to say God cannot be perfect unless He already is locked in to understanding the future working out one way.

        Narcissistic determinists think God just had to create them and eternally immutably love them, hating so many others. He is not free, but only a puppet to His own fatalistic nature, in their view. It gives them comfort to think they aren’t responsible for their sins, imo.

      104. Absolutely. And it also explains why arrogance and narcissism is so prevalent among Calvinists. We will always be gradually transformed into the image we have of God.

      105. TS00
        We will always be gradually transformed into the image we have of God.

        br.d
        SO TRUE!
        And they who worship them become like unto them – Psalm 115:8

      106. brianwagner writes, “It is a false dichotomy to say God cannot be perfect unless He already is locked in to understanding the future working out one way.”

        Let’s deal with what is actually said. God is perfect and among His perfections is a perfect understanding of all things. By His perfect understanding, God understands perfectly all that is to happen. For example, before a stone tossed into a lake hits the water, God understands the turmoil that will be created by that stone once it hits the water. God understands how many ripples will be generated and how long they will last, and how far they will extend. God, through His understanding, knows the certain future of the water that will result from the stone hitting the water. This is true for each and every event that occurs. God understands how each event, from the fluttering of a butterfly wing to a nuclear explosion, will play out over time. There is no misunderstanding of any future impacts of present actions with God. God’s perfect understanding of all present events means that the future can only work out one way and this in accord with His understanding. By His understanding is God’s knowledge of all future events making that future certain.

        Then, “Narcissistic determinists think God just had to create them…”

        If God did not create them, how could they even exist. Paul says, “in God we live and move and have our being,” I don’t think this is necessarily a narcissistic attitude.

        Then, “…and eternally immutably love them, hating so many others.”

        Given that God is perfect in understanding and will not save all people, then, Yes.

        Then, “It gives them comfort to think they aren’t responsible for their sins, imo.”

        To whom do they ascribe responsibility for their sin if not themselves in your opinion?

      107. Yep… God “understands perfectly” all the possibilities that still exist – called future free will choices – that He has not made yet, and nor has man. He does not know the lie as being true that those choices are already made to work out only one way, like the determinists lock-in and limit His foreknowledge falsely to be defined as set.

        In determinism, logically no one but God is responsible for every sin, for, to them, it was His will that eternally immutably predestined each sin event before any other will was even created. He set up the dominos, and knocked the first one over. But really “Fate” is the god above Him, logically in their view, for they willingly admit God had to create things just this one “perfect” way in their view.

      108. brianwagner writes, “Yep… God “understands perfectly” all the possibilities that still exist…”

        Yes, He does. However, God’s understanding is not finite as you portray Him but infinite and perfect. If there are future events not known to God then the learning of those events would add to His understanding so that it would not be infinite and perfect. So, you have br.d’s god who is not perfect. Thus, you say, “He does not know…” As God’s knowledge is derived from His understanding, to gain knowledge is to gain understanding.

        Then, “In determinism, logically no one but God is responsible for every sin, for, to them, it was His will that eternally immutably predestined each sin event before any other will was even created.”

        Then, we add God’s infinite and perfect understanding of all things and we have God understanding the actions of people by His understanding of all internal and external influences and forces to which the person is subject. It is in the infinite and perfect understanding of His creation that God is able to determine all things, including sin, without having to coerce people to sin thereby making people accountable for there actions.

      109. So very true TS00!

        And another thing that concerns me is the image of a person standing over a bible reader’s shoulder telling them what every verse means. We used to have that with Catholic priests. Then Calvinists took over the practice.

      110. rh writes:
        “In all His understanding, God is able to render certain all that happens while also granting to the person the ability to make willful decisions that accord with his desires.”

        Hows that for high sounding nonsense? God is rendering certain all that happens, yet supposedly granting people the ability to make willful decisions. That just so happen to accord with his desires. Every time.

        In reality, when people have the ability to make willful decisions, they are as free to resist what God desires as act in accordance with his will. Which, it just so happens, is exactly what we see both in scripture and in everyday experience. Evil exists because people have been given the ability to make willful decisions – and they often make decisions to reject the desires and will of God. Of course, scripture often mentions men doing things which God does not desire, which never entered his mind, and which he has commanded them not to do. Which Calvinism simply ignores, or twists into some nonsensical ‘freedom’ to do exactly what God has ordained and nothing else.

      111. TS00
        Hows that for high sounding nonsense? God is rendering certain all that happens, yet supposedly granting people the ability to make willful decisions. That just so happen to accord with his desires. Every time.

        br.d
        Again you hit the bulls-eye TS00!

        Yes – pure DOUBLE-SPEAK!

        The fact that the Calvinist asserts determinism – but then goes about doing everything he can to SMUGGLE IN-determinism into his system (in camouflaged form) in order to APPEAR biblical – tells us everything one needs to know!

      112. TS00 writes, “In reality, when people have the ability to make willful decisions, they are as free to resist what God desires as act in accordance with his will”

        Everyone agrees that people are as free to resist what God desires as act in accordance with his will only if they have the tools to do so. Is a person who has no faith and is a slave to sin free to “act in accordance with his will.” Yes, but the person is not free from himself and all those influences that make him what he is. He has limited knowledge and only such understanding and wisdom as God gives him. According to Ephesians 2, he walks, “according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.” It is all those factors that determine his desires and he can never be free from those desires until God frees him. So, the key phrase in your statement is, “…when people have the ability…” Sinful man has the ability to resist God and expresses his resistance to God and God’s law all the time. Sinful man is not free to “act in accordance with his will” with regard to His word.

        Your statement that “it just so happens, is exactly what we see both in scripture and in everyday experience,” is in error. You are correct to say, “Evil exists because people have been given the ability to make willful decisions – and they often make decisions to reject the desires and will of God,” except that sinful man always makes to reject the desires and will of God as expressed in His word.

        God understands all there is to know about people. He knows how a person reacts to situations in his pride and selfishness and the synopses that spring forth when he indulges in pornography or other sinful behavior. God made man the way he is and God stood by and did nothing when Adam ate the fruit having perfect understanding of all that would happen subsequent to Adam’s sin.

        It is true that “scripture often mentions men doing things which God does not desire, which never entered his mind, and which he has commanded them not to do.” What does this tell us but of the deep depravity that man is capable of; things that God never intended that they do.

      113. TS00
        “In reality, when people have the ability to make willful decisions, they are as free to resist what God desires as act in accordance with his will”

        rhutchin
        Everyone agrees that people are as free to resist what God desires as act in accordance with his will only if they have the tools to do so

        br.d
        Actually in Theological Determinism (aka Calvinism) there’s no such thing as the creature resisting Calvin’s god’s will.

        With every neurological impulse RENDERED-CERTAIN by divine programming before the creature is created as part of the design of the creature. And additionally – resisting that which is RENDERED-CERTAIN is a LOGICAL impossibility.

        Here again understanding Calvinism is relatively straight forward
        A Calvinist is a determinism – wearing a mask of IN-determinism – reciting double-speak talking points.

      114. Certainly you can posit that God merely permits rather than determines all things – you just cannot do so and pretend like it aligns with Calvinism. Ya can’t have it both ways. Either God determines all things, or he merely permits men to do as they wish. You cannot on the one hand assert that God is the cause of whatsoever comes to pass, having determined all things in eternity past, and at the same time allows men to make free choices as to what they will do. It is so insanely illogical; simply repeating it again and again and again does not make it make any more sense.

        I am fairly sure most people understand the difference between irresistibly determining choices and allowing free choices – but rh pretends that wishing can make these two opposite, antithetical options be true at the same time. Wishing can’t make it so.

      115. I believe Calvin himself is the author of their self-contradicting DOUBLE-THINK

        Peter Van Inwagen in The Oxford Handbook of Free Will writes:
        “Determinism may now be defined: it is the thesis that there is at any instant exactly one physically possible future.”

        And John Calvin is smart enough to know that any predestined event can only resolve to one physically possible future.

        And yet he writes:
        -quote
        “All future things being uncertain to us, we hold them in suspense, AS THOUGH they might happen either one way or
        another.”

        Additionally, John Calvin believes that all things are determined by the THEOS and in every part.

        And yet he writes:
        -quote
        “Hence as to future time, because the issue of all things is hidden from us, each ought to so to apply himself to his office,
        AS THOUGH nothing were determined about any part.”

        Notice in both cases how Calvin instructs people to hold something as TRUE and yet treat it “AS THOUGH” it is false.

        This for me – is where Calvinism gets its *AS-IF* thinking pattern.

        “mere” permission doesn’t exist *AS-IF* it does
        Adam was not permitted to obey *AS-IF* he was
        Calvin’s god determines every part of a person’s will rather than that person *AS-IF* he doesn’t
        etc etc

        I see this as a ubiquitous thinking pattern with Calvinists.
        And pretty much 80% of rhutchin’s posts are some form *AS-IF* thinking.
        But you can see that rhutchin tries very hard to smuggle it in trying not to get caught.

        The gobbledee-goopeeness of his language is often a dead giveaway.

      116. TS00 writes, “Either God determines all things, or he merely permits men to do as they wish”

        God determines all things as He is omnipotent and directs all events to the conclusion He wants. Under God’s constraint, people do as they wish as those did who sold Joseph into slavery, crucified Jesus, and stoned Stephan. In each case, men did as they pleased while accomplishing God’s purposes. God does not “merely permit” people to act without His purpose being accomplished – God works all things according to the counsel of His will.”

      117. I have a very different take on this particular, and all other events, especially evil ones.

        Joseph’s brothers were determined to do evil, as their hearts were filled with envy and hatred. Consistent Calvinism, by the way, must allege that God himself ordained and brought into existence that envy and hatred, rather than permitted it. This is what the non-Calvinist, such as I, rejects. Whereas God knew, and always foreknows, the thoughts and desires of every man’s heart, he neither determined nor approved them.

        Because God did create man with a free will, and will not overrule him to prevent the possibility of evil, he instead channels much intended evil so that, in the end, it will lead to good. Rhutchin falsely insists that his is all that Calvinism demands, but this is not so. Calvinism does not allow God to simply permit or prevent evil, but requires his sovereign, omnipotent, irresistible ordaining of all things. He does not merely permit, he unfailingly brings to pass whatsoever he desires to be.

        The non-Calvinist rejects this meticulous control, while acknowledging God’s omniscience, omnipotence, and sovereignty, which he alone sets limits upon in order to grant his creatures freedom to choose.

        The Calvinist takes false comfort in a world in which increasing evil is not the indication of a world in rebellion against God, but simply part of his pre-planned agenda. Thus, he seeks assurance that he will see no evil that God has not only allowed, but ordained as for his best.

        The non-Calvinist, instead grants that, while God is unquestionably the sovereign ruler of the universe, he has granted to the men he designed and created a great deal of freedom. So much freedom that they can resist his will, disobey his commands and wreak havoc upon a once perfect creation. This he sadly, solemnly ‘merely’ permits, without ever choosing or approving that it be so.

        Thus, the Calvinist finds false assurance in the belief that nothing ‘too bad’ can happen, as God has his hands firmly on the controls. The non-Calvinist accepts the reality that terribly awful, unthinkable things might happen to him in this world, including rape, tyrannical oppression or murder. He will not wrongly credit God with giving his mother cancer or ordaining his daughter’s rape. His assurance lies in the actual hope given to us by the resurrection of Jesus, the promise and assurance of life after death.

        Rather than falsely laying the blame for unthinkable evils at God’s feet, the child of God must trust him, his goodness and his promise of hope in a world in which great suffering and evil exist, not by God’s meticulous ordination, but by his mere, reluctant permission. Our hope is in a new creation, a recreation of men and all things into their former, glorious, God-reflecting state.

        This is why I now reject Calvinism’s penal substitution atonement theory, in which God demands a blood sacrifice in order to satisfy his wrath. Instead, I believe the message of Jesus, the hope of the cross lie not so much in his willing suffering and death, as in the resurrection to new life in an eternal, glorified state. Jesus did not die to ‘cover’ our sin, but to free us from its controlling power and fear.

        I have not freed myself from all of the confusion introduced by the errors of Calvinism and penal substitution, but the rejection of their major premises was the doorway to greater understanding of the character of God and the message that Jesus is intended to bring to the world. This good news rests in the promise of Christ’s return and the marvelous transformation which he will produce in us and our world.

      118. Great post TS00 – I agree – keep laying it out there – showing the ugly belly of the beast from Gen 3

      119. Back to Joseph, I do not believe that God ordained the envy, hatred and desire to kill Joseph which his wicked brothers rose to. I do believe in his promise and power to work in and through the evil to produce good. This does not eliminate the bad. It was indeed evil, and no doubt heartbreaking for Joseph to discover that his brothers so hated him that they were willing to kill him.

        We do not know every detail of what happened that day. I suspect that God inspired Joseph to trust him, to not put up such a fuss that his sale into slavery would be prevented. Did Joseph at that moment see this as a great blessing, being sold away from his beloved father, home and all that he knew and loved? Did he believe that God would do such things to him?

        I would suggest not. Even many years later, when Joseph was in a place to save the lives of his family, he acknowledged that his brothers had intended evil and death, whereas God turned this hatred around to produce good and life. God worked with the evil that wicked hearts produced, and, with Joseph’s faith and cooperation, was able to turn it into something good. Had Joseph been angry at God for allowing such a thing to happen, petulant, uncooperative and deliberately troublesome, he would never have risen to the place of trust and power he eventually attained. He did not need to believe that God ordained this evil event; simply that God was good, wise and powerful enough to turn such a tragic crime into something that made it worth all of the suffering it produced.

        Calvinism’s faulty views do not produce assurance, they create the need to suppress anger and hatred toward a God who works so much evil. They demand that men submit to and even praise a cruel, harsh taskmaster who cares nothing for the suffering his ways introduces into men’s lives. This forces men to repress their genuine and natural response of anger and disgust that a supposedly loving God would deliberately create a world marked by tyranny, oppression, abuse and suffering. All for the sake, supposedly, of guarding God’s sovereignty.

        God has no such qualms. His ego does not demand that he constantly declare who’s in charge here, and demand instant obeisance. He does not smack us aside the head for whining and sniveling about a little rape and genocide. Instead, he assures us that such things were never intended to be. That the vile, cruel works of men never even entered his mind, let alone be deliberately brought to pass.

        No one hates sin, suffering, evil and death more than God. He did not bring it into being because he needed it to get his due glory. Rather, he has chosen to endure, and to require us to endure, great evil for a season, with the promise and hope that it will be brought to a final and permanent end. And yes, he will indeed receive unending praise and glory when we are able to see how he took the weak and wanting works of our hands and wove them into his good and glorious plan for redemption and renewal. How I long for that glorious day!

      120. rhutchin
        God does not “merely permit” people to act without His purpose being accomplished

        br.d
        FALSE
        In Calvinism “mere” permission does not exist at all.

        But notice the “fine print” language here – which allows for “mere” permission under a certain condition.

        It is a truthful saying – In Calvinism what the LARGE PRINT gives – the FINE PRINT taketh away!

        Its all a part of the DOUBLE-SPEAK :-]

      121. br.d writes, “But in the Calvinist world they never actually had a will of their own in the first place.”

        They do. God with His infinite understanding knows all the factors and influences on a person in making a decision and thereby allocates to the person a will to choose while still knowing what the person will choose.

        Then, “Calvin’s god makes all human functionality irresistible!”

        As Paul said of God, “in Him we live and move and have our being,” God is the source of understanding and wisdom, so a person can understand no more than God gives him to understand and can make no wise decision except as God gives him wisdom. God also determines the place, the parents, the culture, and life experiences of a person. In all His understanding, God is able to render certain all that happens while also granting to the person the ability to make willful decisions that accord with his desires.

        Contrast that with br.d’s god who has no understanding, limited wisdom, and no knowledge of future events and is able only to manipulate present events to gain His will.

      122. rhutchin
        They do. God with His infinite understanding knows all the factors and influences on a person in making a decision and thereby allocates to the person a will to choose while still knowing what the person will choose.

        br.d
        This is an excellent example of circular thinking!

        Here Calvin’s god knows what he RENDERS-CERTAIN – that which he “allocated to the person” – along with all of the factors and influences he RENDERED-CERTAIN to be “allocated to the person”. Which includes every part of that person’s will.

        Which simply means – at the foundation of the world before the person was created – Calvin’s god determined every part of the person’s will for that person. As such all parts of the person’s will was determined by Calvin’s god – not the the person.

        Or simply apply elementary math:
        1) Calvin’s god determined ALL
        2) Subtract ALL from the sum total of things determined – and you get ZERO left over for the person to determine.
        Thus it follows – the person does not determine any part of his own will – Calvin’s god does.

        Therefore my statement stands untouched by fallacious circular thinking! :-]

      123. br.d writes, ‘Thus it follows – the person does not determine any part of his own will – Calvin’s god does.”

        In God’s perfect and infinite understanding of all things, He is able to take into account the voluntary actions of people and to gain that which He has rendered certain without coercing specific actions by people.

      124. br.d
        ‘Thus it follows – the person does not determine any part of his own will – Calvin’s god does.”

        rhutchin
        In God’s perfect and infinite understanding of all things, He is able to take into account the voluntary actions of people and to gain that which He has rendered certain without coercing specific actions by people.

        br.d
        Here we have the Non-Coercion or Non-Force argument which is supercilious to the main point.

        Elementary school math quiz:
        1) Calvin’s god determines ALL
        2) Take the sum-total of that which is determined concerning a person’s will and subtract ALL from it

        What is left over for the person to determine?
        ANSWER:
        Zero!

        And no amount of Calvinist DOUBLE-SPEAK can be used to make it APPEAR other than what it is! :-]

      125. So true — what I find within the Calvinist system is: If I did it, or Hitler did it or a rapist did it then that thing or string of things was exactly what God wanted, needed, desired and meticulously brought into being by God himself and there was no other option BUT for Hitler to do what he did. God wanted, needed, desired and even propelled Hitler to act just as he did and Hitler never had another true option God was the programmer behind Hitler’s every thought and action. “But God was not the author of evil” – is tacked on just to make everything sound like it agrees with the Bible even the actually teaching is teaching that God authors evil. Double-speak

      126. Much worse than doublespeak, this is sheer blasphemy, to pin all of the evil thoughts, desires and deeds of men upon God, the one being in existence who never had an evil thought or desire and who will one day ensure that evil will never again prevail upon the earth.

      127. GraceAdict
        “But God was not the author of evil” – is tacked on just to make everything SOUND like it agrees with the Bible even the actually teaching is teaching that God authors evil. Double-speak

        br.d
        Agreed!
        Calvinism is 90% making things LOOK the way they want it to look.

      128. GA,

        I’ve been reading thru this thread regarding the word, WORKS.

        When I first began reading the bible as a novel, beginning from genesis, of course, I was studying why the 7th Day Adventists insist on going to church on Saturday. I am not a 7th Day Adventist. I just wanted too know why. But at this same time, I was also in the process of reading the bible as a novel. I said to myself, SELF, READ THAT BIBLE AT LEAST 5 TIMES before you answer that inquiry about the 7th Day Adventists.

        That aside, I began seeing key words, and how they were used.

        Two very important words came at me like a bolt of lightning.

        Righteousness, and WORKS.

        Later, I discovered that Luther had a problem with three word, works, too.

        Then I began setting the context of how it was used.

        Romans 4: Works is what ya do to earn a wage. Obeying the law of Moses is the work. But, concentrate on the word, DO. That is the lowest common denominator of the word, work. Do, deeds, work.

        The wages for that kind of work is DEATH…For the WAGES of sin is death. And since no one can obey, for all have sinned.

        The Calvinists seem to think that faith on your own is works. But the law is not of faith, and there is no commandment listed in the 613 commandments to have faith. Therefore faith is not a work, but, and this is important, faith is not imputed. It’s your own faith. And your own faith is not a work. The only way faith can be a work in the context of Romans 4, is if it were a law in the law of Moses.

        Next…

        James 2…faith without works is dead.

        Again, remember the word, DO.

        James tells us that Abraham is justified by works, and that appears to contradict Romans 4.

        But let’s look at Abraham. What was his work? obedience? No. That was part of it, but why was he obedient? Because he believed. But let’s delete the word, OBEDIENT for a moment. His work was LIVING what he believed. He believed the promise of God that his seed would continue thru Isaac, so he had no problem sacrificing Isaac, cuz he knew that God would raise him from the dead anyway on order to make the promise come true. So, in short, James is discussing LIVING WHAT YOU BELIEVE. DO.

        Now, Ephesians…

        Good works, or, good deeds.

        I recently watched the movie, BOHEMIEN RAPSODY. Freddie dad always stressed, good thoughts and good deeds.

        What is a good deed (works)?

        So, too conclude, three uses of the word, works, all of them mean DO, but each of them are something different.

        But Luther hated the word, works. I think he wanted to ditch the book of James, if I’m not mistaken.

        But, in any case, faith is not imputed, and FAITH is not a work of man, but it is man persuaded, as it has already been said.

        Nothing more needs to be said of works, except to underscore that God does not give us faith to believe. It’s our own faith. He persuades us in his word. He talks, we listen. And we are not depraved at all. We reject due to not being persuaded. We believe because we are persuaded.

        Why do people wait at a bus stop?

        Ed Chapman

      129. chapmaned24 writes, “The Calvinists seem to think that faith on your own is works.”

        Calvinists say that a “faith” that is not derived from the “hearing of the word,” is a work – based on false faith. Faith that is derived from hearing the word is not a work – a true faith. Thus, when Jesus says, ““Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name,…” he is speaking of people doing “works” that is based on a false faith (basically, a desire to please men).

      130. rhutchin,

        Dog gone it, rhutchin, and I was gonna FINALLY agree with you on something, too. Now you ruined it!!!!! I was gonna agree with you regarding your explanation on ONCE SAVED ALWAYS SAVED in your GREAT response to AIDAN, I believe, in the parable of the TALENTS…the good and faithful SERVANT vs. the OTHER servant. Your explanation is, to me, as saying that the OTHER servant was NOT BORN AGAIN in the first place, for which, AIDAN thinks that BOTH are already in the BORN AGAIN league, but the OTHER ONE loses his status as BORN AGAIN.

        Now, with your latest comment to me, I will defer my agreement to a later date!! LOL. Seriously, that was a very good response that you had to Aidan, and I do indeed agree. But since you are a Calvinist, I cannot agree with your REASONING regarding WHY one is BORN AGAIN, or should I say, SAVED, to begin with. So there we do indeed disagree.

        NOW…MOVING ON…

        You had said:
        “Calvinists say that a “faith” that is not derived from the “hearing of the word,” is a work – based on false faith. Faith that is derived from hearing the word is not a work – a true faith. Thus, when Jesus says, ““Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name,…” he is speaking of people doing “works” that is based on a false faith (basically, a desire to please men).”

        That is what Calvinists say, that I will agree, but that’s NOT what Hebrews 11:1 states at all. BREAK IT DOWN to the LOWEST COMMON DENOMINATOR, such as the following:

        Hebrews 11:1 (KJV) FAITH IS:
        Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

        Substance:
        Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #5287: Assurance
        Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines assurance as: Pledge, Guarantee

        Romans 8:24-25
        For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

        Hoped, Hope:
        Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #’s1679, 1680: Expectation or confidence
        Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines hope as:
        to expect with confidence; Expectation is defined as: Anticipation; Anticipation is defined as: The act of looking forward, and, visualization of a future event or state.

        Hebrews 11:1
        Now FAITH IS: The guarantee of things (substance/assurance) expected (hoped/waiting for).

        Faith: Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #4102:
        Persuasion, i.e. credence. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines credence as: mental acceptance as true or real.

        Bottom line:
        Faith is KNOWING that we are going to get what we are waiting for.

        *********************************
        Or, as i like to put it, FAITH IS KNOWING THAT THE BUS IS GONNA ARRIVE IN TEN MINUTES, BECAUSE I BELIEVE THE BUS SCHEDULE.

        TAKE IT BACK TO ABRAHAM, PLEASE EVERYBODY. God spoke to Abraham, God promised Abraham something, and Abraham believed it, and so he LIVED IT, and PERFORMED it, even tho HE HIMSELF didn’t get the promise in his lifetime. All he did was BELIEVE IT. He believed God. So, faith comes by hearing WHAT exactly, from a Calvinist. Hearing WHAT?

        Hearing THE WORDS OF THE BIBLE. For the words of the Bible is SUFFICIENT to believe, NO DIFFERENT THAN A BUS SCHEDULE is. All you are doing is waiting for a bus, because you believe that the bus will arrive when the schedule states that it will arrive. You TRUST the bus schedule, you believe the bus schedule, so YOU PATIENTLY WAIT for the bus to arrive.

        Patiently waiting is HOPE.

        It doesn’t get any plainer than the example of the bus schedule. NO MAGIC WAND OF ANY KIND OF IMPUTATION.

        NEXT…

        Faith is NOT A WORK, whether it be false faith, or true faith. False faith is NO FAITH, which is the same as saying, I DON’T BELIEVE, AND I’m sure that you agree, but TRUE FAITH is from your own heart, NOT THAT OF ANOTHER, AKA AN IMPUTATION. God does not impute faith to ANYONE AT ANY TIME. Either you believe or ya don’t. And you believe BASED ON what is said, not on what is IMPUTED.

        Ed Chapman

      131. chapmaned24 writes, “Bottom line: Faith is KNOWING that we are going to get what we are waiting for.”

        This faith is derived from hearing the word – it is true faith. A person van have a false faith – that faith not derived from hearing the word.

        Then, ‘False faith is NO FAITH, which is the same as saying, I DON’T BELIEVE,”

        People with no faith will claim to have faith and to believe. Such were those of whom Christ said, ““Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord,…”

      132. rhutchin
        People with no faith will claim to have faith and to believe. Such were those of whom Christ said, ““Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord,…”

        br.d
        Its interesting to note here – there is a -quote “LARGE MIXTURE” of Calvinists who believe they have faith – and believe they are “elect” – because Calvin’s god -quote “holds salvation out to them as a savor of condemnation”. And he will later – quote “strike them with greater blindness”.

        LARGE MIXTURE – I would guess that’s perhaps 80% of the Calvinist population.

        This would mean there are thousands of Calvinists running doing what Calvinists are taught to do
        Look over Eve’s shoulder and tell her what god said.

        Thousands of TOTALLY DEPRAVED Calvinists – and no Calvinist with spiritual discernment enough to discern it. :-]

      133. rhutchin,

        I don’t believe in SUCH A THING called FALSE FAITH. FAITH IS PERSONAL. EITHER YA GOT IT, OR YA DON’T. There is no such terminology in the bible. But you use LORD LORD as the example. Either you believe, or ya don’t. But I do NOT see any explanation in your LORD LORD example that states anything about a term called FALSE FAITH.

        Matthew 7:21
        Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

        Obviously, they are NOT DOING THE WILL OF THE FATHER. They are projecting themselves as people of faith, but are not. Simply put, they are LIARS. But FALSE FAITH? They don’t have FAITH.

        There is no such thing as TRUE FAITH or FALSE FAITH. It’s just faith, period.

        Where can I find the term FALSE FAITH in the bible?

        I just did a word search in the KJV. The closest that I get is:

        Proverbs 14:5
        A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will utter lies.

        So, I would call those who CLAIM to have faith, but don’t, LIARS.

        Ed Chapman

      134. Good stuff Ed…

        I also noticed that the passage RH quotes does not speak of faith but of works instead…
        Many have confidence in their “Christian looking works” and think that is what will commend them to God such is the case in that passage, LOTs of prophesying, casting out demons, doing Many Mighty works in Jesus name YET works don’t cut it:

        Mat 7:21  “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 
        Mat 7:22  On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 
        Mat 7:23  And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ 

      135. GraceAdict writes, “I also noticed that the passage RH quotes does not speak of faith but of works instead…”

        LOL!!! That’s called not seeing the forest for the trees.

      136. chapmaned24 writes, ‘I don’t believe in SUCH A THING called FALSE FAITH….”

        When Jesus describes people as saying, “Lord, Lord…” there is the implication that they think they are saved – therefore they have faith. That would be a false faith under the circumstances and no faith.

      137. rhutchin,

        You had said:
        “When Jesus describes people as saying, “Lord, Lord…” there is the implication that they think they are saved – therefore they have faith. That would be a false faith under the circumstances and no faith.”

        My response:

        James 2:18-26 New International Version (NIV)

        18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.

        19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

        20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?

        21 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar?

        22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did.

        23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,”and he was called God’s friend.

        24 You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

        25 In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? 26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.

        That’s not FALSE FAITH, that is DEAD FAITH, or non-existent faith, aka NO FAITH.

        Ed Chapman

      138. rhutchin: ““When Jesus describes people as saying, “Lord, Lord…” there is the implication that they think they are saved – therefore they have faith. That would be a false faith under the circumstances and no faith.”
        chapmaned24: “My response: James 2:18-26 New International Version (NIV)
        That’s not FALSE FAITH, that is DEAD FAITH, or non-existent faith, aka NO FAITH.

        James argues that faith w/o works is dead and a dead faith is faith that exists but is dead (or useless). Jesus says that people come to Him saying “Lord, Lord…” that indicates they think they have faith and then list their works. So, according to James, these people should have a faith w/ works that is alive. Yet, Jesus says, “I never knew you.” indicating that they have works but no faith. I don’t see James being all that helpful when speaking of Matthew 7.

        Your complaint is my use of the term, “false faith,” when you think I should say, “no faith.” I don’t see a difference.

      139. rhutchin,

        You are totally wrong to insinuate that the people in the LORD LORD example actually THINKS that they have faith, calling it false faith.

        James PROVES that they have NO FAITH AT ALL, DEAD FAITH. Dead insinuates that it is indeed NON-EXISTENT. Not a false faith.

        In the bible, there is a term of FALSE WITNESS, but not false faith. It does not say, DEAD WITNESS. But a dead witness is a non-existent witness. He can’t testify.

        Ed Chapman

      140. chapmaned24 writes, “You are totally wrong to insinuate that the people in the LORD LORD example actually THINKS that they have faith,..”

        OK. I just think you are a little screwy on this point. However, you can argue with the people who say, “lord, Lord…” and tell them what they think.

      141. chapmaned24 writes, ‘ At least I’m not a Calvinist. That is screwy. ”

        One does not have to be a Calvinist to be screwy, nor does one have to be screwy just because he is a Calvinist, as you demonstrate.

      142. rhutchin,

        If faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God, then THEY DIDN’T HEAR THE WORD OF GOD. THE HAPPY FEET DIDN’T PREACH IT TO THEM.

        Hebrews 11:6
        But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

        The LORD LORD did not diligently seek him.

        They were not BORN AGAIN.

        We are justified by faith, NOT BY WORKS.

        The only people that can enter the pearly gates are those who have faith. NOT TRUE FAITH, but faith. There is no such thing as FALSE FAITH.

        What does exist, is PROVING your faith by what you do. If you have faith, you will seek him, and the only way to seek him is to hear about him…that is, if faith comes by HEARING.

        It’s obvious that they didn’t hear in the first place, thereby have NO FAITH…not a false faith.

        If that is screwy, then so be it. Where is the HAPPY FEET that was supposed to PREACH IT TO THEM?

        Ed Chapman

      143. chapmaned24 writes, “The LORD LORD did not diligently seek him.”

        The issue is what those who say “Lord, Lord,,,” actually THINK. They THINK they are saved because they say, “Lord, Lord…” That they are wrong is indisputable, but they still THINK it.

      144. rhutchin,

        What they think is irrelevant. IF that is what their justification is gonna be at the Great White Throne, God will tell them that they didn’t have faith to begin with.

        You justify a false term.

      145. rhutchin
        The issue is what those who say “Lord, Lord,,,” actually THINK. They THINK they are saved because they say, “Lord, Lord…” That they are wrong is indisputable, but they still THINK it.

        br.d
        Like that LARGE MIXTURE of Calvinists who THINK they are “elect” – when in fact they are TOTALLY DEPRAVED.
        So Calvin’s god makes the THINK they are “elect” when they really aren’t.

        What do you THINK rhutchin – do you THINK you “elect” ?

      146. So…Chapmaned – “Mr. Prophecy Man” – the one born sinless from his mother’s womb as you assert: What can you say about the issue of “Prevenient Grace” ?

      147. jtleosala,

        You had asked:
        “So…Chapmaned – “Mr. Prophecy Man” – the one born sinless from his mother’s womb as you assert: What can you say about the issue of “Prevenient Grace” ?

        Never saw that word in the bible. What version is Prevenient mentioned? Bottom line…I don’t believe in it.

        And yes, David was sinless at birth. His MOTHER is the one who was IN SIN. If you have ever read the HEBREW story about it, then you would see.

        You can read about that here:
        https://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/280331/jewish/Nitzevet-Mother-of-David.htm

        Ed Chapman

      148. Yes. Ed C. I also don’t buy that “Prevenient Grace” here. However we differ in our take on David. For me, I think David was sincere when he said that “He was already a sinner since he was still inside his mother’s womb. It is not too hard to believe on the confession of David himself rather than throwing the blame to his mother as the one who was a gross sinner. – I also say that David just inherited that sinful nature from a sinful parent.

        The first time we were born is the natural man,old man, the fallen man with sinful nature while the second birth, Jesus is telling us is spiritual with divine nature implanted and is bound to become citizen of heaven. I know you don’t agree with this, so there is no need to dispute in between of us here.

        It seems that you have a good discussion with Aidan and I guess you are so much inspired to interact…

      149. jtleosala,

        I have never seen where David said that he was a sinner in his mothers womb. I see that people INTERPRET that, but I don’t see it.

        NO ONE is born dead. LIFE comes before death, both naturally, and spiritually. Romans 7 tells us about spiritual death. Romans 5 tells us about natural death.

        But, based on the link I provided yesterday, you should have concluded that David’s MOM was IN SIN, not David himself.

        I have no idea why people think that David said, “I was sinning when my mother conceived me”.

        In regards to FROM THE WOMB stuff…NO, I DON’T BUY INTO THE LOGIC THAT IT IS PEOPLE SINNING IN THE WOMB.

        Prophets speak this kind of language when they are discussing NATIONS, but not people. Jacob was a NATION CALLED ISRAEL, for example. Not just a person.

        Ed Chapman

      150. Corrigendum to my post: instead of Genesis 24:34-35 it should be Genesis 26:34 sorry for the typographical error made.

        And Esau was 40 years old when he took wife Judith, the daughter of Beeri the Hitite, and Bashemath the daughter of Elon the Hetite. v. 34

      151. rhutchin
        …..my use of the term, “false faith,” when you think I should say, “no faith.” I don’t see a difference.

        br.d
        Following that logic – you don’t see the difference between “false prophet” and “no prophet”. :-]

      152. And “false” prophet is a misnomer in Calvin-land, since God sent all the prophets anyway. If He admits it or not. 😉

      153. rhutchin
        So, are you denying what Paul said in Ephesians 2, “we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works,

        br.d
        In Theological Determinism (aka Calvinism) works are simply the outward expression of those neurological impulses which Calvin’s god programs creatures to have.

        The Calvinist can then observe using A POSTERIORI knowledge (knowledge by observation) whether or not the divine programming of those impulses were designed to produce “good” works vs. “evil” works.

        By A POSTERIORI knowledge – the Calvinist can conclude that the divine programming of “good” works is FEW – while the divine programming of “evil” works is MANY.

        By A POSTERIORI knowledge – the Calvinist can therefore conclude that Calvin’s god has a need to glorify himself with a preponderance of evil.

        And that for the Calvinist – is Calvin’s god’s workmanship.

      154. I think we see something very similar in the way English translators have typically translated the Greek word for “Servant” or “Service”.

        When in the text its obviously a woman involved – it will be translated as “serve”, “service”, or “servant”. But when the text regards a man – it will be translated as “office” or “administration”.

        By the time in history when English translations were starting to be made – power-focused men had already transformed the church – which the Holy Spirit created as an extended family – into an institution with offices, popes, cardinals, and archbishops.

        Any translator or commentator who doesn’t support the idea of the church being a hierarchical institution with men having administrations and offices – would be more successful in life as a plumber. :-]

      155. “Peitho and pisteuo” ‘to trust,’ are closely related etymologically; the difference in meaning is that the former implies the obedience that is produced by the latter, cp. Hbr 3:18, 19, where the disobedience of the Israelites is said to be the evidence of their unbelief. Faith is of the heart, invisible to men; obedience is of the conduct and may be observed. When a man obeys God he gives the only possible evidence that in his heart he believes God. Of course it is persuasion of the truth that results in faith (we believe because we are persuaded that the thing is true, a thing does not become true because it is believed), but peitho, in NT suggests an actual and outward result of the inward persuasion and consequent faith.” *
        [* From Notes on Thessalonians, by Hogg and Vine, pp. 254, 255.]

        Thus, we see from Heb. 3:18,19; that it was because of their unbelief they were disobedient to God in the wilderness: “And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? So we see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.”….Again note, that it was their ‘unbelief’ that caused them to ‘disobey God’. And so too in John 3:36, we also have this connection between “unbelief” in the Son and “disobedience” to Him.

        But, I am not just reliant on one verse, but on many verses throughout the bible with different Greek words showing the absolute necessity of obedience in salvation. One such passage which most all of the translations translate the same way, is (Heb. 5:8,9). “though he was a Son, yet learned obedience by the things which he suffered. Having been made perfect, he became to all of those who obey him the author of eternal salvation.” Again, notice: Jesus has become the author of eternal salvation to all who “OBEY” Him. Please hear and accept this truth, and don’t be in doubt of the multitude of differing scholars and translations!

      156. Aidan, you rightly conceded the persuasion is prior to believing, which fits both the John 3:36 and Heb 3:18-19 passages. Your pointing to Heb 5:8-9 does not fit your argument.

        We both agree present tense continual obedience describes those who have already received everlasting salvation in the new birth through faith. The word “obedience” in 5:9 is not from *peitho* but from *hupakouo* which is the normal word for obedience. Obedience is not the means of everlasting salvation.

      157. Aidan
        Jesus has become the author of eternal salvation to all who “OBEY” Him. Please hear and accept this truth, and don’t be in doubt of the multitude of differing scholars and translations!

        br.d
        Hi Aidan, I can understand you’re position on this, but I think this brings up the issue of how the culture in which English translators and commentators live brings its own bias into their translations and commentaries.

        Take for example Mark 8:6
        The KJV translators have this as “He commanded the multitude to sit”

        While later translators have this as: “He directed the people to sit”

        I think its pretty easy to see the culture in which the KJV translators exist is much more authoritarian than the later, and that functions as an overwhelming bias which these translators can’t help but bring to every verse.

        We know there are places in the KJV which the current Bible manufactures would like to change – to make them more precise. But certain denominations have vested interests in the current wording (authoritarian for example) and would boycott those wording changes.

        We currently exist within our own cultural power-struggles.
        And its easy for us biased humans – just like it was for the KJV translators – to force those biases onto the text of scripture.
        And we inadvertently end up imposing thoughts and intents upon the NT authors which they never thought or intended.

        But I’m sure you’ve taken these things into consideration.

      158. Brian I think you’ve misunderstood what I’ve said. I conceded nothing, except that we both concede that ‘persuasion’ unto ‘obedience’ are involved in salvation! Let me quote you:
        “though one who is unpersuaded will certainly not obey the command of the gospel – “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.” Which has you saying in logical order, be persuaded — to obey the command — to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ — unto salvation. Which means that you have ‘faith conjoined with obedience’ — for eternal life.

        And Heb. 5:8-9 does actually fit my argument perfectly BECAUSE it is the normal word for “obedience” in the Greek. How could you miss it? ” Having been made perfect, he became to all of those who obey him the author of eternal salvation.” This verse makes crystal clear that obedience is absolutely necessary for one’s salvation.

      159. So let me take a different tact, Aidan. When one obeys the command to believe the gospel are you agreeing with me that they are given the new birth/everlasting life that cannot be taken away or forfeited but will with certainty demonstrate its reality by practicing obedience to Christ?

      160. BR.D, I appreciate your comments in this matter. I think we both understand that all of the various translations have their issues. This is why it is good to refer to a number of translations on any given matter in order to have a more accurate view. My understanding is that many of the good translations we have today are due to the efforts of devout men and scholars from differing backgrounds and personal religious viewpoints. In my view this has helped minimize bias.
        But if there was one thing they all had in common, it was a deep conviction that the words of scripture as originally penned in the Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek were inspired by God. We need to be careful that we don’t undermine confidence in the word of God, which we so readily have at our fingertips. And be confident that God has preserved that word for us, so that we might say along with Peter in 1 Pe 1:25; “BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER. And this is the word which was preached to you.”

        Yes, we should always examine everything carefully, and be discerning with regard to the many translations out there. But I believe that we should be quick to trust in God by following His established word. For, “Every word of God is tested;
        He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.”(Pro. 30:5).

        Hopefully this helps,
        Thanks.

      161. Aidan
        My understanding is that many of the good translations we have today are due to the efforts of devout men and scholars from differing backgrounds and personal religious viewpoints. In my view this has helped minimize bias.

        br.d
        We are certainly blessed with a lot of translations. And we are certainly blessed that discerning men down through the years have weeded out streams of NT manuscripts that were purposefully corrupted – motivated by political or doctrinal biases.

        But I am mature enough to discern the cultural biases that have played their role in those various translations.

        Aidan
        We need to be careful that we don’t undermine confidence in the word of God, which we so readily have at our fingertips.

        br.d
        I would amend that statement by saying we should be appreciative of the word of God we readily have at our fingertips.
        But since we know there are purposeful corruptions within various streams of NT manuscripts – we must have a mature awareness of motivators behind them – which are flesh – and we should put no confidence in the flesh.

        Aidan
        But I believe that we should be quick to trust in God by following His established word. For, “Every word of God is tested;

        br.d
        My stance is different – I have a love and appreciation for the manuscripts.
        But I also have a mature awareness that the human traits of the religious leaders during Jesus’ earthly ministry were allowed by God.
        And God allows those same human traits today in the church.

        So one of my favorite verses is “In vain is the net spread in the sight of any bird” :-]

      162. Brian, before you take a different tact and move on, can you tell me what you believe Heb. 5:8-9 actually does teach? You’ve told me what you believe it doesn’t teach, but failed to explain why. I would actually like to hear your explanation of what “eternal salvation to all who obey Him” means (v.9), especially since you don’t think it means “eternal salvation to all who obey Him”? Or maybe I’m wrong, perhaps you do?

      163. Aidan… I look forward to your answer. I thought I did explain what I thought Heb 5:9 meant… at least briefly. Here it is more in depth.

        I’m born again. I’m obeying Jesus because of that new birth change in my nature. Jesus is the cause/author of that everlasting salvation for me and people like me who are now obeying Jesus because of that new birth change in their nature.

        He became that cause/author when He completed His redemptive work as my perfect substitute on the cross. Praise His Name!

        It seems to me that others, maybe you, are reading into this verse the idea that Jesus is the completer of everlasting salvation for those who have completed a life of obedience to him. But the grammar does not support that idea.

      164. BR.D,
        “I would amend that statement by saying we should be appreciative of the word of God we readily have at our fingertips.
        But since we know there are purposeful corruptions within various streams of NT manuscripts – we must have a mature awareness of motivators behind them – which are flesh – and we should put no confidence in the flesh.”

        Aidan,
        Br.d, if you haven’t got much confidence in the vast number of biblical manuscripts, how are you going to sort them out? Will you not have to, at some point, rely on men who are flesh, scholars in linguistics for, Greek, Aramaic, and Hebrew? But you already have done so, and continue to do, unless, of course, you are an inspired man. Yet these are all fleshly men from whom we glean our knowledge. We have thousands of biblical manuscripts with centuries of scholarly knowledge and wisdom to rely on. God has always used men of flesh to carry out His purposes, even in a multilingual world.

        And what about the millions of simple folk over the centuries who hadn’t got your capabilities, but had to rely on the scholars; did they not have access to the truth? And who decides what is true or not? Is it going to be you, a man of flesh like they were, like the rest of us? But God has preserved His word in the thousands of biblical manuscripts copied down for us. If you don’t believe we have the complete word of God from these, then your lack of trust is in God not man. I think this goes for all of us: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding.”(Prov. 3:5). For He is bigger than fleshly man.

      165. BR.D,
        “I would amend that statement by saying we should be appreciative of the word of God we readily have at our fingertips.
        But since we know there are purposeful corruptions within various streams of NT manuscripts – we must have a mature awareness of motivators behind them – which are flesh – and we should put no confidence in the flesh.”

        Aidan,
        Br.d, if you haven’t got much confidence in the vast number of biblical manuscripts, how are you going to sort them out?

        br.d
        Sorry – I thought I mentioned that when I indicated appreciation for the discerning men who have weeded out the corrupted manuscripts.
        I brought up the reality of corrupted manuscripts to add a little balance and understanding – that men do such things with the scripture. So to carry that recognition forward a little further – since we know there have been men who are willing to physically alter the text of scripture – we should be wise enough to also realize these same biases will come into play in translators and commentators.

        F.F Bruce for example is noted as one of the top 10 Scholars of the 20th Century because he disciplined himself to not bring in external biases into his handling of scripture. There are thus scholars who obviously stand above the rest with a deserved level of recognition. Which also means there are scholars on the other side of that balancing scale.

        Aidan
        If you don’t believe we have the complete word of God from these, then your lack of trust is in God not man.

        br.d
        Sorry I never thought I conveyed that we don’t currently have the complete set of manuscripts.

        And in regard to trusting God – I think there is enough church history for God’s people to have a mature understanding and recognition that God allows abuses by men in the church just as he did during the days of Jesus’ earthly ministry. One does not have to have lack of trust in God to know what God allows.

        There was a time for example – when a young mother would be burned to death at the stake for teaching her children the Lord’s prayer. She would certainly know there were men with political and doctrinal biases that would motivate them to do that to her. And just because she recognized that fact does not equate to lack of trust in God. Similarly for one to be wise enough to recognize that translators and commentators have biases that they bring to the text also doesn’t equate to a lack of trust in God. It rather equates to wisdom.

        Aidan
        I think this goes for all of us: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding.”(Prov. 3:5). For He is bigger than fleshly man.

        br.d
        Yes amen to that!
        But let’s bring in some balance – if a man is in a bull pen turning his back on the bull telling himself he’ll simply trust in God – then God is going to allow that man to experience a rude awakening.

        Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. (Prob 4:6)

      166. Brian’s comment,
        “I’m born again. I’m obeying Jesus because of that new birth change in my nature.”

        Aidan:
        This is not grammatically correct, therefore this is not what the verse teaches. You have suggested that this verse is simply teaching that, one is obeying Jesus because they are born again.

        In other words, you are reading into this verse simply the idea that, ‘one is obeying Jesus because they already have eternal salvation’. But the grammar does not support that reading. Instead, let’s read it as it says it, namely having being made complete “He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation”

        And I agree that the grammar refers to “all those obeying Him,” which contrary to your suggestion, actually supports the idea of “their obedience.” Therefore, ‘He became to all those who are obedient to Him the source of eternal salvation.’

        What then does this verse promise to those who are “not obedient” to Him?

      167. Aidan, you ignored, imo, the point that Jesus became the cause of everlasting salvation at the cross. That is the context. That everlasting salvation is given to someone when? If you say when or while they are obeying Jesus, then after how much obedience?… and doesn’t that then make their obedience the cause of their everlasting salvation instead of Jesus?

        That the practice of righteous is the result of the new birth is taught clearly in – 1 John 2:29 NKJV — If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.

      168. Fair enough BR.D, It’s always good to examine everything carefully and not be naive. Thanks.

      169. Brian’s Comment:
        “Aidan, you ignored, imo, the point that Jesus became the cause of everlasting salvation at the cross. That is the context. That everlasting salvation is given to someone when? If you say when or while they are obeying Jesus, then after how much obedience?… and doesn’t that then make their obedience the cause of their everlasting salvation instead of Jesus?

        That the practice of righteous is the result of the new birth is taught clearly in – (1 John 2:29) NKJV — If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.”

        Aidan’s Comment:

        Brian, you have grossly misinterpreted what I said by assuming that I have ignored the context, and consequently, that I have made men the cause, or source, of their eternal salvation instead of Jesus!
        You believe that ‘belief and repentance’ are necessary for salvation, don’t you? Well what if it was the word “believe” instead of the word “obey” in Heb. 5:9? “And having been made perfect, He became to all those who (believe) in Him the source of eternal salvation,” I’m sure you would agree with that sentiment. But would it be fair for me to then say to you, “you are ignoring that Jesus became the cause of salvation at the cross”….”and doesn’t that then make their (belief) the cause of their everlasting salvation instead of Jesus? Again, how fair would that be, when you were just agreeing with the verse about Him becoming to all those who believe in Him, the cause/source of eternal salvation? Likewise, you believe in repentance as necessary for salvation? Would it be fair for me to simply say that you are making repentance the cause of their everlasting salvation instead of Jesus? Of course not!

        But let’s compare what I actually said to what the verse says, and then see if you are being fair:

        Aidan: “…namely having being made complete “He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation”
        Heb 5:9: “And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation,”
        Aidan: “Therefore, ‘He became to all those who are obedient to Him the source of eternal salvation.”

        Can you see any real difference between what I said and what the verse says? If not, then why did you assume that I ignored the context? Is it simply because I made no mention of His suffering and death? Look at Heb 5:9, it makes no specific mention of it either, yet we know it’s implied from the context of the book! We need to remember that the subject of these chapters is Christ, and how we have in Him one who has “become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.” He became obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.”(Phl. 2:8; Heb 5: 8-10). That’s the how, the when, and the why He was made complete to become to all those who are obedient to Him the cause/source of eternal salvation.

        It is interesting what Vine says on this word “Author” of our salvation:
        “an adjective (cp. aitia, a cause), denotes “that which causes something.” This and No. 2 are both translated “author” in Hebrews. Aitios, in Hbr 5:9, describes Christ as the “Author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him,” signifying that Christ, exalted and glorified as our High Priest, on the ground of His finished work on earth, has become the personal mediating cause (RV, margin) of eternal salvation. It is difficult to find an adequate English equivalent to express the meaning here. Christ is not the merely formal cause of our salvation. He is the concrete and active cause of it. He has not merely caused or effected it, He is, as His Name, “Jesus,” implies, our salvation itself, Luk 2:30; 3:6.”

        And I wholeheartedly agree, that the practice of righteousness is a hallmark of one who is an ongoing faithful Christian, as taught clearly in – (1 John 2:29) NKJV — If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.
        But I also know that some practiced obedience and righteousness even before they were born again, as taught clearly in — Acts 10:35 NKJV — concerning Cornelius — “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” But Cornelius only became saved after he heard the gospel. Which just goes to prove again, that Jesus is the cause/source of that salvation, but only to those who are willing to heed and obey Him in faith.

        That one cannot afford not to obey is taught clearly in Mat. 7:21 — “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter”. “Does the will” (Present tense = as a lifestyle). That’s what the verse means!

      170. Brian’s:
        So let me take a different tact, Aidan. When one obeys the command to believe the gospel are you agreeing with me that they are given the new birth/everlasting life that cannot be taken away or forfeited but will with certainty demonstrate its reality by practicing obedience to Christ?

        Aidan’s:
        Hi Brian, I find that this Calvinistic type doctrine of “once saved always saved” no matter what you do, is nowhere taught in scripture. Or, do you believe that a Christian cannot fall back into sin, become unfaithful, and fall away from the faith? Book, chapter, and verse, with explanation for what you have affirmed above would be helpful. Also, I hope my last post to you on July 8th was helpful.

        Regards, Aidan.

      171. AM writes, “I find that this Calvinistic type doctrine of “once saved always saved” no matter what you do, is nowhere taught in scripture.”

        Paul said, “He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;” jesus said, ““All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” In saying, “I will by no means cast out,” Jesus guarantees that once God begins salvation, He will complete it.

      172. RH,wrote:

        “and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” In saying, “I will by no means cast out,” Jesus guarantees that once God begins salvation, He will complete it.”

        True for the faithful, but notice:

        Those who teach that a child of God cannot be possibly lost, use this passage: “and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” (John 6:37.) When Jesus sent His apostles on the limited commission, He sent them “to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Mat 10:6). “Lost sheep.” Though they were “sheep” they were designated “lost sheep.” How did they become lost sheep? Certainly because of sin. And what about the unfaithful who had forsaken Him? “the LORD is with you when you are with Him. And if you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you.” ( 2 Chr. 15:2).
        We need to remember that in the context of John 6, He is speaking to Jews. But, who comes to Jesus? None other than those who have ‘learned of Him.’ ( cf. John 6:44-46). Jesus invites the “weary and the heavy laden,” to come (Matt. 11:28). None others would come, or could come! Regardless of how far off in sin you have wandered, when you come to Christ in repentance, weighed down with the weight of sin and sorrow, when you come to Christ with faith in Him, He will not say to you, “No.” The door will not be closed in your face. Be it rich or poor, male or female, Jew or gentile; there is no distinction made; the invitation is to all who are “weary and heavy laden.”

        Therefore, when one comes to Christ, and there is only one way to come, he will not be rejected — entrance will not be denied him, nor will he be cast out; but if he then proves to be an “unprofitable servant,” he will be “cast out.” (Matt. 25:30 NKJV).

      173. HIS OWN SERVANT CAST OUT

        “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. “And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey.

        “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. ‘And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’ “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. ‘So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. ‘Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.

        ‘And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ (Matt. 25:14, 24-28, 30, NKJV).

        Only those born again are in the kingdom V.14: “..unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” (John 3:5). They were his “own servants” (v.14). But one of them proved to be an “unprofitable” servant, and he was cast into outer darkness; where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth, (v.30). How can one read this narrative, and then teach that a child of God, one who has been born again, cannot fall from grace and be lost?

      174. AM writes, “How can one read this narrative, and then teach that a child of God, one who has been born again, cannot fall from grace and be lost?”

        The kingdom of heaven is likened to a man who did such and such. The conclusion is that “good and faithful” servants are rewarded and the “wicked and unprofitable” servant is cast out. Is Jesus, through this parable, telling us something about believers? Certainly, the attitude of the wicked servant – “‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. ‘And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.” – is not the attitude of a believer. I think you have misunderstood Jesus’ purpose in this parable.

        Previous to this parable, we have, ““Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins…Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish.” We understand that the “foolish” virgins were not believers, yet we have the reference to the kingdom of heaven. I suspect you would identify the foolish virgins as believers.

        In Matthew 13, Jesus said, “the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind, which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away.” This gives a different slant on what Jesus means when He uses the term, “kingdom of heaven,” than you attribute to Him.

      175. All humans are born servants of God, fearfully and wonderfully made, with a plan and purpose to glorify Him and enjoy Him forever. The issue is that the plan is not predestined to work out only one way, but has conditional elements in which the individual freely accepts or rejects. Thus some servants never get saved and are cast out into outer darkness of hell at the judgment.

      176. BORN AGAIN, IN THE KINGDOM

        Again, only those born again are in the kingdom V.14: “..unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” (John 3:5). They were his “own servants” (v.14). But one of them proved to be an “unprofitable” servant, and he was cast into outer darkness; where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth, (v.30). There is no question that these “servants” of His were in the kingdom.

        The Parable of the dragnet speaks solely of the final removal from the kingdom of all that are not faithful or true disciples. The reality is that many attach themselves to the kingdom who are not totally committed, or not committed at all. The parable of the sower makes this evident. Certainly, of those who receive the gospel, some will be shallow and others will be half-hearted ( the rocky soil and thorny ground). But the final cleansing of the church is left for the One who knows all things.
        Again, as for the servant in (Matt. 25:14), he was a “servant in the kingdom” who became an “unprofitable” servant, and was “cast out” as a result (Matt. 25:30).

      177. Aidan, there is clear indication in the parables of Christ that for the second group of parables in Matthew 13 the kingdom encompasses the whole world – “the field is the world”. And all mankind are His servants in that kingdom. The fruit of the Word is salvation when the Word is the gospel. People can have a positive response to the gospel, but if there is not any fruit unto salvation, there is no salvation. The fruit doesn’t cause salvation, but a full response of faith in the Word does, a faith that is without shallowness or choking cares. But once the fruit is fully formed, everlasting salvation exists until the harvest.

        Do you really reject the idea that all are born servants of God in His kingdom? The kingdom is not the church! And there is a future physical kingdom to enter, when Jesus will reign in on earth, but that is not yet. I do concede that, like the word “law”, the word “kingdom” has many different meanings and expressions, and that has caused some of the disagreement and misinterpretation in many passages.

      178. AM writes, “The reality is that many attach themselves to the kingdom who are not totally committed, or not committed at all.”

        If these are the ones thrown out, I am fine with that. Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’”

      179. Aidan McManus
        “The reality is that many attach themselves to the kingdom who are not totally committed, or not committed at all.”

        rhutchin
        If these are the ones thrown out, I am fine with that….etc

        br.d
        It is wisdom to remember – what the Calvinist hides is 100 times more important than what he reveals.

        In this case the Calvinist is “fine with that” because in his mind the THEOS at the foundation of the world designed/assigned the particular attributes of these individuals to be what they will be.

        On top of that he uses his supernatural powers to NOT permit them to do otherwise. In this case he RENDERS-CERTAIN they will attach themselves to the kingdom while NOT permitting them to be totally committed.

        In the Calvinist’s mind – these persons were divinely designed and assigned to be cast out.
        And that is why the Calvinist would be fine with it.

        It makes for a very interesting THEATER show. :-]

      180. CAN YOU CALL YOUR BROTHER A FOOL?

        “But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire.” (Matt. 5:22.)

        Everyone with any sense knows that he can call his brother a “fool.” And that according to Jesus, all such are in danger of “hell fire.” If it is not possible for any “brother” to be lost, how can one of them be in danger of “hell fire”?

      181. JESUS CAME PREACHING THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN AT HAND

        THE KINGDOM WAS FINALLY AT HAND:
        From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Mat. 4:17). The sermon on the mount anticipates this heavenly kingdom now at hand : “Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Some were soon to enter, but some were not: “For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Mat 5:3,20). Sending out the twelve on the limited commission: “And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Mat. 10:7). The purpose of the parables: He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.” (Matt 13:11.) The parable of the Tares was about the kingdom of heaven, not the world: “Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field;” (Mat. 13:24).

        A paradox of the parable helps us see what the kingdom of heaven is. “The field is the world.” But the gathering of the tares means “The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness” (Matthew 13:41). So, is the world the kingdom? No, the kingdom is within the wheat. “The good seeds are the sons of the kingdom.” “The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20-21). The kingdom of heaven is the rule of Christ within the hearts of His disciples. The sons of the kingdom, within whose hearts the kingdom dwells, and the sons of the wicked one are intermingled in the world. The sons of the wicked one will be gathered out from among the sons of the kingdom.

        THAT KINGDOM DID COME:

        For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, (Col 1:13)

      182. Well Aidan… this kingdom that Jesus talks about with his apostles certainly hasn’t come yet – 😊
        Matthew 19:28 NKJV — So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

      183. RH, writes: “If these are the ones thrown out, I am fine with that.”

        Well if they are thrown out of the kingdom, then that means that they had been saved and had entered the kingdom. You can only be thrown out of it if you are in it. Which means that you acknowledge that “once saved always saved” is false.

        And indeed, Jesus’ explanation of the parable of the sower accords with that view (Mat. 13:20-22).

      184. BRIAN, writes: “Well Aidan… this kingdom that Jesus talks about with his apostles certainly hasn’t come yet – 😊”

        Surely you are not referring to the scriptures I used which state clearly that it was “at hand”, and then had come?

        THE CHURCH IS THE KINGDOM OF CHRIST — COMPOSED OF FELLOW-CITIZENS (Eph. 2:19).

        A. Prior to the coming of Christ the Gentiles were excluded from the commonwealth of Israel (vs.12). The term “commonwealth” implies a government or kingdom.

        B. Now in Christ the Gentiles are no longer strangers and aliens, but are “fellow-citizens” with the saints (vs.19). This means that the church is a kingdom.

        C. Other scriptures show that the church is the kingdom of Christ. This is a governmental figure.

        1. Christ is king of kings (1 Tim. 6:15; Rev. 17:14; 19:16).
        2. Church and kingdom are used interchangeably (Mat. 16:18,19). The kingdom was established on Pentecost (Acts 2; cf. Mk. 9:1; Lk.24:48-49; Acts 1:8).
        3. First century Christians were in the kingdom of Christ (Col. 1:13; Heb. 12:28; Rev 1:9).

        THE KINGDOM HAS COME.

      185. BRIAN, you wrote: “And there is a future physical kingdom to enter, when Jesus will reign in on earth, but that is not yet.”

        I’m sorry Brian, but there won’t be a physical kingdom on earth!

        (A) Jesus is now seated on the throne of David in heaven (Acts 2:29-36).

        (B) The bible teaches that Jesus must remain on the throne of David in heaven until death is destroyed (1 Cor. 15:24-26).

        “then comes the end, when He hands over the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power.” (vs. 24)

      186. Aidan, I would love to hear your take on the verse I just shared from Matt 19:28. And then there is – Matthew 8:11 NKJV — “And I say to you that many will come from east and west, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.” That certainly hasn’t happened yet either.

        In Acts 2… sitting at God’s right hand is not sitting on David’s throne… which is in Jerusalem. Nor does 1Cor 15 say anything about David’s throne… that is eisegesis.

      187. BRIAN, YOU WROTE: ” In Acts 2… sitting at God’s right hand is not sitting on David’s throne… which is in Jerusalem. Nor does 1Cor 15 say anything about David’s throne… that is eisegesis.”

        In Acts 2:31, speaking of David as a prophet, Peter says,… ““he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ.” The question; what did David “foresee” that caused him to speak of the resurrection of Christ? He meant the promise that God would raise up Christ and seat Him on the throne of David: It says, “Therefore, being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ to sit on his throne, he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ,…” (v.30 -31). “Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God,…(vs.33). And how long must Jesus reign, seated at the right hand of God? Notice what it said (v.35): …”Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” And how long will that be? “For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be destroyed is death.”(1 Cor 15: 25-26). In other words, He must continue to reign on that throne in heaven until death is destroyed (i.e., till the general resurrection.)

        Your position, my friend, is untenable.

      188. Aidan, you are conflating the various expressions of God’s kingdom and thrones and still ignoring giving any comments on the verses I gave you.

        The Kingdom of God’s dear Son does exist now. He is seated on the right hand of the Father in heaven. That is not David’s throne. He will take David’s throne when He returns. The 12 apostles will rule with him, on their thrones over the 12 tribes of Israel. Christ’s dominion will be over the whole earth until He delivers that earthly kingdom up to the Father.

        Still waiting on your comments on the verses I asked you to comment on. Thx.

      189. “I’m sorry Brian, but there won’t be a physical kingdom on earth!”

        Brian,

        Sometimes I wonder if we are all reading from the same book.

        Blessings, brother.

      190. Phillip
        “I’m sorry Brian, but there won’t be a physical kingdom on earth!”

        br.d
        Its interesting the amount of different views there are on this subject.
        N.T. Wright for example would be more in-line with Brian.
        For him election and salvation is for service – on earth as it is in heaven.

      191. BrD,

        I see to viruses that have infected the church. One is Calvinism. The other is replacement theology. The latter being more severe.

        When I read something like “there won’t be a physical kingdom on earth”, it makes me shudder. Nothing would please Satan more than to have “Christians” turn against Israel. And many already have.

        Satan knows full well the importance of that chosen nation.

      192. Yes Phillip I agree!
        And I think we’ll find that replacement theology is embraced within reformed theology – which is a synchronization form of Gnostic/NeoPlatontic doctrines synchronized into Catholic doctrine via Augustine.

        Antisemitism can be traced back through the ages of the Catholic church.
        And I remember N.T. Wright saying that John Calvin was a Catholic with a small “c”

      193. Amen Philip and BR.D
        This is all so true…antisemitism is found within these ranks as it was during the reformation.
        I have been very astounded at the overt and covert antisemitism found among many Calvinists…they say that Israel is the problem in the middle east and not the terrorists. That England and the US caused the huge problem that now exists in the middle east by helping Israel become a nation. The most antisemitic people I have ever known are Replacement Theology people…Now I am not saying that all are antisemitic but my experience is this…and it is one of the reasons I started questioning at a deeper level what Calvinism actually teaches and where does it all lead if you follow it’s line of thought. It also leads back to Rome.

      194. BrD/Graceadict,

        I’ve posted this before, but for the sake of new on-lookers I will post it again. These are not my words, but those of a beloved brother….

        “II Timothy 1:8b-9 ‘…of the gospel according to the power of God; 9. Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, (not because of anything we deserve, but only because His grace is poured out to bring about the fulfilling of His own purposes. Now look at the rest of the verse) which was given us in Christ Jesus (when?) before the world (or the ages) began,’

        Now that ties right in with everything we’ve been saying all afternoon. Right from eternity past, when the Triune God in counsel decided to create the universe, to put mankind in it, knowing that he would fall into sin. Knowing that He would bring about a Plan of Redemption, and in that Plan of Redemption He would have to bring to fruition the Nation of Israel. So that out of the Nation of Israel would come their Messiah. And that their Messiah could be rejected and go to the cross. It was all preplanned before the ages ever began. Miracle of miracles, the eternal purposes of God to bring about a Savior, not just for Israel, for the whole human race – but it starts with Israel.

        And that’s why you know I’ve made the illustration, that if you take a wheel, especially the old covered wagon wheel with the wooden spokes and the steel tire around the edge and the hub. Well, you can lose a good portion of the rim and you can lose several of the spokes and the wheel will still turn. But you pull the hub out of that wheel and you’ve got nothing. Nothing!

        All right, what’s my point? Israel is the hub of God’s wheel. You take Israel out of the mix and you’ve got nothing. And that’s where most of Christendom is. They have totally rejected Israel as a part of God’s eternal purposes and you cannot do it. Somebody told me the other day that their pastor had said from the pulpit ‘There is not one word in the Bible that says that Israel should ever come back to their homeland.’ How in the world can they say something like that, as the Old Testament prophecies are full of it.”

        Amen.

      195. I watched the Mark Levin interview of John Hagee. He has a membership of 5 million Evangelical Christians who recognize Israels place in God’s plan. Then we have Jews for Jesus – and other Messianic organizations.

        We don’t have a Messianic group here in my vicinity – but if we did my family would be excited to visit them.
        It appears to me that an increasing number of Christians are putting an increasing focus on God’s intentions for Israel.

      196. nr.d writes, “I watched the Mark Levin interview of John Hagee. He has a membership of 5 million Evangelical Christians…”

        From Hagee’s website – https://www.jhm.org/WhoWeAre

        “Pastor John C. Hagee is the founder and Senior Pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, a non-denominational evangelical church with more than 22,000 active members. Pastor Hagee has served the Lord in the gospel ministry for over 60 years. “

      197. Thanks for posting the link.
        BTW: I have no affiliation with and in no way should my post be construed as marketing for Mr. Hagee’s ministry.

      198. Hey BR.D — If or when you post your article online somewhere could you please give me a heads up I would love to refer people to that article. It discusses the issues at a completely different level in one cohesive article…it helps people get inside the belly of the beast and see HOW the manipulation of language is happening. Once again thanks…

      199. Thank you again GraceAdict!

        I think that article is way to large to be posted – and the information something that Dr. Flowers would want to enunciate as a natural outflow of his wonderful work.

        However, please feel free – per your good discretion – to forward that article to anyone you think might benefit by it.

        I’m really happy you found it useful!
        God is good!

        Sincere thanks :-]

      200. Just an idea.. (I’m not giving up yet 🙂 what if you turned it into a short e-book that was free for download?
        I will continue to pass it on but my contacts are limited and a free downloadable e-book might get more exposure bringing more light to those who are being deceived into believing that the Calvinist words really mean what we think they mean in common English.
        In this whole discussion of Calvinism as a worldview there are 3 major areas as I see it. A.) The doctrinal issues and their distortions B.) The logical issues arising from this faulty worldview C.) HOW words are used to mislead and cover the bad and ugly.
        Your article describes the How they use language, in a very cohesive way. I find folks don’t really believe what Calvinism is actually teaching because they don’t understand the slight of hand and misleading terms and definitions that are constantly being smuggled in by their use of language. This is just as foundational as dealing with the Doctrinal distortions.

        The” Lawyer like” use of language – Calvin the trained lawyer that he was, used language in deceptive ways and this continues in Calvinism and people need to know how they are being deceived. Sorry for constantly bugging you on this…

        Keep up the good work…your insights are very helpful but they do get quickly buried underneath a host of other comments that often are arguing a completely different topic. I have a hard time finding some of the great comments that I read just last week. So my appeal is to make a few short e-books maybe 20-40 pages each that places your great insights in one place for the rest of us to access more easily. I think the body of Christ would be greatly benefited by this… I know it would make my job a lot easier. Even in your comments on this site – you could comment and then post the link saying for a more in depth discussion here is a free e-book etc… Just an idea Enough said I will not bug you again on this issue. Blessings and thanks so much

      201. Thanks Phillip, a great illustration… when we forget what God is doing on a macro level we are not well prepared to understand what is happening in our day and age and in fact it sets the church up to actually oppose what God is doing. In our area very few pastors support any effort that is pro-Israel. However they do support other efforts in the middle east…it is sad to see this one sided stance.
        I too am glad for John Hagee’s efforts to support Israel publicly. PTL for men that have the courage to do that in this day and age. Has anyone followed the UN and it’s anti-Israel agenda… if you are interested https://unwatch.org/en/ is a great organization that brings to light what is happening. There are some great clips on this webiste.

      202. Graceadict,

        More from the same brother I quoted above (again, not my words)…..

        “Alright but now the point that I’m really wanting to make is concerning the nation of Israel. Now we know that anti-Semitism is coming up much like it did in the thirties, and forties, especially over in Europe, and it prompts me, and I want to remind my listening audience, why since day one, have the Jewish people suffered such hatred and such opposition from the rest of the world? Well, it isn’t because of their unique makeup, it isn’t because of their personality, it isn’t because of their looks, it’s because this adversary of God, this Lucifer, fallen now, and we know he’s Satan – knows that if he can knock Israel out of the earth’s existence, then God’s whole program falls apart. Because, as you see, as I’ve said over and over on this program, Israel is at the heart of everything that God does. And if you take the heart out, that kills the whole. And this is what Satan knows.

        And so all you have to do is reflect back. Just as soon as the race was called out through Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, my, what begins to befall those people? Well, the first glaring act of course, is when the brothers sold Joseph down into slavery. Hatred! Sin! Now you come all the way up through their history. Now there comes all of this what we think is, how could those people who have been blessed so richly, be so blind and practice such unbelief? Because Satan knows and he works on them constantly. If he can get Israel out of the way, he’s the winner.

        Alright, let’s bring you all the way up to the Book of Esther. What happened in the Book of Esther? Well old Haman convinced the king to set out a decree that would kill every Jew in the empire, because they were the problem. And so the king fell for it. Fortunately God had His own little Jewish girl in the right place at the right time and thanks to Esther, the whole thing fell apart. But did Satan quit? No! He keeps on and so everything is directed to stop God’s program. When Christ is born, why in the world did Herod put out the decree to kill all the boy babies under the age of 2? To hopefully, get that Christ child that has been born in that two year interval. Well, why kill the Christ child? Oh, that’s what Satan wanted.

        Now, you take it on up to the work of the cross, as many of you now have seen the movie, ‘The Passion’. Oh, what was behind the whole scenario? Satanic power! And so all the way down now since. Satan working overtime to stop God’s prophetic Scripture. And so why the hatred of Israel tonight? Why the threat to throw them into the sea? Why the threat to get rid of every Jew on the planet again? Oh that’s what Satan wants, because if Israel is gone, then everything falls apart. Never lose sight of that. And so this is the reason that they are so hated and so despised, is because Satan knows that without them God’s promises would fail.”

        Again, I agree completely.

      203. Phillip, I presume you are aware that not all share your views, as I am aware that not all share mine. It is clearly a passion of yours, but as it is not central to the focus of this blog, perhaps we can agree that this is not the place to debate geopolitical issues, and focus on the true issues which concern Soteriology101. Unless you are indeed proposing a gospel of salvation that is determined by race, as opposed to being available to all men equally, which was, as I have pointed out, the original Judaistic error and remains the stumbling block of many. I am sure that I could introduce many debatable subjects that would invite much spirited disagreement, but that is not what we are about here, in my opinion. I like to think we can preserve a wide tent on topics that lend themselves to various interpretations, particularly concerning prophecy and eschatology, but are not central to the message of the gospel, which we all desire to preserve from being declared unavailable to any man, woman or child.

      204. TS00,

        I was just “chiming in” in support of brother Brian’s view that there will be a physical kingdom on earth (which I did not initiate). While the topic of “an earthly kingdom” might not be a normal subject of soteriology101, Brian, to his credit, thought it worth defending.

        While the “goal” here at soteriology101 might be to rebuke Calvinism, readers should be given all possible alternatives other than those held by mainstream Christianity (case in point, this particular thread: Arminianism/Prevenient Grace). Even when it might make some of us, including myself, uncomfortable.

      205. Phillip writes:
        “Israel is the hub of God’s wheel. You take Israel out of the mix and you’ve got nothing. And that’s where most of Christendom is. ”

        I would respectfully disagree. Not because I am anti-semitic, but I am anti-racist. I do not believe that God loves any race of men more than any other, nor has his plan of salvation been geared toward one small family of people. It is the belief that it is that has actually often led to antisemitism.

        Not quite sure how people who propose such things explain away the scriptures that declare in God’s eyes there is to be no more separation among people – no more Jew vs Gentile. To suggest this is not true, that he had always planned to focus on the physical descendants of Abraham, (actually some subset thereof, which one would have a very difficult time defining) would appear to call God a liar, and suggest that he yet has favorites.

        The message of the gospel must never be distorted. God’s love and plan for salvation was never intended for one select group of people – neither ‘the elect’ nor ‘the Jews’. This was the point upon which Israel stumbled, the very reason so many rejected Jesus and his good news – and yet you are suggesting it is unreasonable to reject the reintroduction of ‘It’s all about Israel’. ‘It’s all about Israel’ would once again lead all others to feel rejected, slighted or less in the sight of God than they genuinely are. It is not, nor has it ever been, all about national Israel, but spiritual Israel, which includes all men who put their trust in God.

      206. TS00
        Phillip writes:
        “Israel is the hub of God’s wheel. You take Israel out of the mix and you’ve got nothing. And that’s where most of Christendom is. ”

        TS00
        I would respectfully disagree. Not because I am anti-semitic, but I am anti-racist. I do not believe that God loves any race of men more than any other, nor has his plan of salvation been geared toward one small family of people. It is the belief that it is that has actually often led to antisemitism.

        br.d
        Thanks TS00 – but it wasn’t my impression that Phillip meant that either.
        And I would heartily agree with you the scripture is clear that God is free of favoritism.

        TS00
        God’s love and plan for salvation was never intended for one select group of people

        br.d
        Totally agree – and again it wasn’t my impression that Phillip meant that.

        My understanding about the place of Israel on this matter concerns the service to which God called them.
        And of course scripture does liken them to a vine in which the Gentiles are grafted in.

        Thanks for bringing this up if what was posted seemed off!

      207. TS00 writes, “To suggest this is not true, that he had always planned to focus on the physical descendants of Abraham, (actually some subset thereof, which one would have a very difficult time defining) would appear to call God a liar, and suggest that he yet has favorites.”

        In Romans 9, Paul writes, “it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, “In Isaac your seed shall be called.” That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.” Then, “What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?

        In Romans 11, “I say then, has God cast away His people?…God has not cast away His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel, saying, “LORD, they have killed Your prophets and torn down Your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life”? But what does the divine response say to him? “I have reserved for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.”Even so then, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace…. What then? Israel has not obtained what it seeks; but the elect have obtained it, and the rest were blinded.”

        Galatians 3, “Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.” So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham…if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

        It is not until after Christ that Paul tells us, “by revelation God made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets: that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel,…”

        So, before Christ God intended to save primarily the Jews (with a few exceptions noted) and then only some and not all. It is not until after Christ that God begins to save gentiles in large numbers but not all gentiles. God does have favorites as noted in John 6, “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me,…”

      208. rhutchin
        So, before Christ God intended to save primarily the Jews (with a few exceptions noted) and then only some and not all. It is not until after Christ that God begins to save gentiles in large numbers but not all gentiles. God does have favorites as noted in John 6, “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me,…”

        br.d
        We know Calvin’s god is sovereign because he always does what the Calvinist says. :-]

      209. Nowhere in the New Testament does Jesus or his disciples suggest that ‘It’s all about the Jews’. In fact, the very opposite is repeatedly emphasized. No one could refute that the thinking ‘It’s all about the Jews’ was what was held to by the Jews. This led to much division and confusion, which the apostles were always seeking to correct. There is no distinction between race or genders. God’s love is for the world – all men. To assert otherwise is simply making the same mistake as Calvinists, only substituting a different definition for who the supposed ‘elect’ or ‘chosen people’ are. I am totally stunned that people would continue to assert that God views any person or persons as more ‘special’ than any other. His ‘elect’ one was Jesus, and all who are in him become God’s elect.

        Was Israel chosen for a unique role in history? No doubt about it. And it is now accomplished, finished. It was God, not man who rent the veil of the temple in two, pointing to the end of the days of Israel being the center of his world. Did his heart yearn for them, and mourn over their rejection of him, feeling the tenderness of a parent to his firstborn? Absolutely. Did he set them up as ‘the hub of his wheel’ for all time, reducing all other children to second rate status? I do not see that anywhere in scripture, apart from a faulty application of Old Testament promises that have long ago been fulfilled, as Joshua recorded long ago: “Not one of all the good promises which the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.” (Josh 21:45)

        Were the descendants of Abraham – a select few – chosen to have a unique claim on God’s love and mercy? Absolutely not. Is it not the major goal of the New Testament, to correct the error that had crept into Israel’s thinking due to false, hypocritical teachers? Jesus came to declare ‘God so loved the world’, to a people who had been taught ‘God so loved Abraham’. And yet people today want to cling to the old error, which has so permeated the modern church – thanks to geopolitical schemes and wars – that few even recognize it.

        Far from most of christendom rejecting ‘It’s all about Israel’, I would say this claim has been so pushed over the last century or so, that it is now nearly unquestioned. I reject both national Israel claims as well as the so-called replacement theory of Calvinism. God’s love is and always was for all men. Israel was a type, an analogy to teach all nations who God is and how much he loves men. There will be no stratification of men according to race in God’s new heavens and new earth.

      210. Aidan,

        Two things.

        How do you conclude David’s Throne from Acts 2?

        The discussion was about the resurrection of the body of Jesus, in that it, the body, was not going to rot or decay in the grave, and that David was not talking about himself, as it appears, cuz David is dead and buried, showing that David is talking about Jesus, not himself.

        So I have no idea how you get David’s Throne out of that.

        Second…

        In Revelation, Jesus talks about those who overcome can sit on his throne, as he himself overcame and sat in his Fathers throne.

        So, I have no idea how you conclude David’s Throne in heaven either, cuz it plainly states that Jesus is on his Fathers throne, not David’s Throne.

        Ed Chapman

      211. Brian, you are just making statements about various expressions of God’s kingdom and about Christ (king of kings, and Lord of lords) not yet ruling over the nations. Where is the scripture? And, you have totally misapplied the period of the “regeneration.”
        Yet, you acknowledge that He is now seated on the right hand of the Father in heaven (Ps. 110:1), forgetting that this where He must reign till “The last enemy that will be destroyed is death.” (1 Cor 15:24-26).

        Again, I say your position is untenable.

      212. WE ARE LIVING IN THE REGENERATION

        The apostles are seated on twelve thrones (in the regeneration)–(Mt. 19:28.)

        1. The regeneration is a description of this period in which we now live:from Pentecost to the end. A related passage in Luke 22:30 uses the phrase “in My kingdom,” rather than “in the regeneration.” And since first century Christians were already in His kingdom (Col. 1:13; Heb. 12:28; Rev. 1:9) then they were already “in the regeneration.”

        2. The term regeneration is limited by the words “when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne.” Note: He ascended into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God (Acts:33-36; Heb 1:3) where He will reign until death is destroyed (1 Cor. 15:24-26) and then hands over the kingdom to the Father.

        3. During this period men may be regenerated or born again (Titus 3:5; cf. Jn 3:5). The word “regeneration” appears only in Mt. 19:28 and Titus 3:5 in the New Testament.

        4. The apostles judge by their written word. Any disputed matter in religion may be settled by an appeal to what they wrote. This may be illustrated by the letters written by Paul to various churches in the middle of the first century A.D.

        5. Therefore the twelve tribes of Israel most likely refer to the people of God.

        As regards to Mt. 8:11? Whether it refers to the kingdom now, or the kingdom in eternity, makes it no less good news for the gentiles. But what do you think He means when He says, “But the sons of the kingdom will be cast out into outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”(vs.12)?

      213. Thank you Aidan for offering some interpretation for those two passages. I hope you will consider that the apostles would not have thought Jesus had that theological meaning that you have given to those promises He made to them. And one has to wonder why Jesus would have been so misleading, if He meant only thrones in heaven and eating with Abraham in heaven. The key is that bodily resurrection has to take place first for people and the apostles to sit on thrones over the 12 tribes of Israel and to eat with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. 1Cor 15 is about bodily resurrection after Jesus returns, so it cannot refer to His kingdom now. You do believe in a physical return of Christ in a physical body and we being raised into physical bodies, don’t you?

        As I mentioned before, just like there are different meanings and uses for the word “law” in Scripture, there are different meanings and uses for the word “kingdom”. Israel as a nation was called God’s kingdom, and some of the sons of that kingdom will end up in hell for rejecting the Messiah. There is a Kingdom of God’s dear Son, that contains only members joined to Him through faith from both Jews and Gentiles. We agree on that. But there is a future kingdom on this earth were Christ is King of kings and Lord of lords, over every nation, and the apostles will rule over the twelve tribes of Israel… that one lasts 1000 years.

      214. Aidan,

        Regarding the word, regeneration, I do not concur with ANYONE here on this blog, including you.

        My conclusion of that word is that it only applies to the BLIND Jews, whom God will take the blinders off of them, giving them all mercy, and why? Because God blinded them in the first place. They are not blind due to any disobedience.

        The Pharisees asked Jesus if they were blind. What was the response?

        His response was, IF YOU WERE BLIND, HE SHOULD HAVE NO SIN, BUT SINCE YOU CLAIM TO SEE, YOUR SINS REMAIN.

        Also, study Joseph, and his blind BRETHREN, who didn’t know who he was until he REVEALED himself to them, and the mercy that they ALL got. Every one of them got mercy.

        How did Joseph reveal himself?

        How will Jesus reveal himself?

        Ed Chapman

        Period.

      215. NO EARTHLY KINGDOM, BRIAN:

        Brian, you don’t think that Jesus meant ‘literal thrones’ do you? “Now the main point in what has been said is this: we have such a high priest, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens”(Heb 8:11) You don’t think that Jesus is sitting on a literal, physical chair, or throne, in heaven do you? Throne means the state of being a ruler, or the right to rule. The apostles had been given much authority in the church/kingdom; Jesus of course having supreme authority as sovereign ruler over His kingdom.

        Your take on 1Cor. 15 is interesting: Yes, Christ will return(parousia) at the end, but not to remain on the earth. And, there will be at that time a general resurrection unto the judgment (Jn 5:28,29), but it doesn’t say “physical bodies,” but rather, spiritual bodies, for flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor 15:44,50). Then we enter into the eternal phase of God’s kingdom in eternity (2 Pt. 1:4).

        1 Cor 15: 23-26: Notice the order of events:”Christ at His coming,” (vs.23), “then comes the end” (v 24). The order is not: (1) Second coming, (2) Resurrection of righteous, (3) Establishment of an earthly kingdom, (4) 1000 year reign, (5) Resurrection of wicked, (6) End. The absence of any reference to the many different parts which form dispensationalist doctrine is striking; they are not mentioned because they are not a part of the events to transpire at the end of this age. When Jesus comes again all things will come to an end. The word ‘telos’ means “last part, close, conclusion.” His coming is immediately followed by the ‘telos’, when He gives dominion back to God (there is no room for a 1000 year reign between these two events)….. He will not “set up” the kingdom; He will “give up” the kingdom! Hence, there is no place for a 1000 year reign of an earthly kingdom in the scheme of God.

        Jesus is now “King of kings and Lord of lords, over every nation including Israel,”(Ps. 110; Dan. 7:13,14; 1 Tim. 6:15; Acts 2:36.)

      216. Aidan, The definition of resurrection into a physical body is part of the gospel. That we will have resurrected physical bodies like Christ’s resurrected body is part of the gospel.

        That Christ will physically return causing physical destruction in a battle against the physical kingdom of the beast and false prophet and then reign physically for 1000 years is sound doctrine. For any layperson who reads Revelation 19 and 20 gets that big picture.

        The theological view you espouse takes the literal understanding a layperson has when reading God’s Word and says to them – “But the Bible does not mean ‘literal’ this or that.” And the layperson is led to trust the new ‘scholarly’ heirarchy over God’s Word.

        I’m guessing you do not believe hell is physical torment either. Is that correct? I have no more to add. Thanks for the conversation. Take the last word in this thread between us if you wish. Blessings.

      217. Brian,

        Just thought I would share…

        Zechariah 14:8-9a (NKJV)….
        And in that day (when the Christ returns to set up His kingdom) it shall be that living waters shall flow from Jerusalem, Half of them toward the eastern sea (the Dead Sea) and half of them toward the western sea (the Mediterranean Sea); In both summer and winter it shall occur. And the LORD (Jesus, the Son of David) shall be (that’s a promise) King over all the earth.

        Now how clear is that?

        Blessings brother!

      218. Excellent example, Phillip, of the literal future that awaits as promised by God.

        One’s loyalty to theologies spawned during the reformation often don’t realize they have bought into a hermeneutic/system of interpretation the original readers of these promises in Scripture would never have considered. And Jesus and His apostles continued using the same literal language explanations about the future of Jerusalem… even when giving predictions about it in apocalyptic literature.

        Throwing out literal interpretation as a foundation for understanding prophecy has caused many to begin to jettison the promise of the future resurrection as being literal… changing the very meaning of the gospel.

      219. Daniel 7:13-14 (NKJV)….
        “I was watching in the night visions, And behold, One like the Son of Man (aka: the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ), Coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the Ancient of Days (God the Father), and they brought Him near before Him. Then to Him (the Son of Man, the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ) was given dominion and glory and a (what?) kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him. His dominion is an (how long?) everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom the one which shall not be destroyed.”

        2 Samuel 7:13 (NKJV)….
        He shall build a house (not a physical house, but a royal blood line) for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom (for how long?) forever.

        Revelation 14:6 (NKJV)….
        Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel (the gospel of the kingdom; the gospel preached to Abraham) to preach to those who dwell on the earth—to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people—

        Revelation 20: 7-8 (NKJV)….
        Now when the thousand years (the millennial) have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle (to battle whom?), whose number is as the sand of the sea (and who did God always prophesized to become as the sand of the sea? Israel! Genesis 32:12, Isaiah 10:22, Hosea 1:10).

        God says there will be an earthly kingdom that will last forever. Man says there is no earthly kingdom. Someone is wrong and I don’t think it is God.

      220. Brian,

        You said something above that triggered something another brother said. I don’t know “church history” as well as I should, but this is how one brother described it. Please feel free to correct any errors (if any) for myself and other on-lookers. Again, not my words…..

        “Well, it’s simply because in 315 AD, now you know I’m a stickler for history. You can’t really comprehend this Book unless you know history, and in 315 AD we had a Roman emperor by the name of Constantine, after which Constantinople was named. Now, Constantine’s mother, Queen Helene, became a believer. So she prevailed upon her son, the Emperor, to take the onus off of Christianity, the persecution and the pressuring of it, and declare it by an emperor’s decree to be the official religion of the Roman Empire.

        Now, that sounds great, doesn’t it? Well, what did it do? It opened the church then to the masses, who literally became church members without benefit of any spiritual rebirth. It was just simply ‘the thing to do’ to become a Christian. Well, there was such a mass movement of the population of the Roman Empire that a church father back in Jerusalem, by the name of Origen, came to the conclusion that since the Jews had rejected their Messiah and crucified Him that God, in His wrath against them, not only destroyed their Temple and destroyed their city, but He, for all practical purposes, destroyed the Nation of Israel.

        Well, He didn’t destroy them, He merely disbursed them. He sent them into every nation in the then known world. But, you see, by the end of 300 years, the world had just about treated the Jew as ‘nothing’, just dirt under their feet. They were persecuted; they were hated. So, Origen came to this conclusion that since God had now destroyed the Nation of Israel, all of the Old Testament promises were now given to ‘the church.’ There are some now, in our present times, who refer to it as ‘replacement theology,’ which is a very descriptive term. But I’ve always called it ‘Amillennialism’. Another term is ‘Preterism.’ They all three mean the same thing. They maintain that with the demise of Israel, the destruction of the city and the temple, that God had now turned all of the prophecy promises over to the church.

        Well, you see, following that line of teaching then, Augustine, who was a bishop in North Africa, the Bishop of Hippo, a member of the Roman Catholic Church, picked up on Origen’s teaching that indeed God was all through with Israel, and that He would just let the Jews slip into a disappearance act. So, he began to promote this concept that since there was no prophecy left to be fulfilled, (how can there be without Israel?) consequently there can be no end-time events. So, their thinking was that the church will keep going. Some kind of intimated that the church would actually take control of the world and ‘reconstructionism’ is the term for that, and that by force Christianity could literally overtake the planet. Well, none of that is according to the Book!

        So, a lot of these other false ideas came in, but primarily that since the Jew is completely out of the picture there can be no end-time events. Well, that follows. If you haven’t got Israel in the land where God can judge her and deal with her in what we call the Tribulation, then that knocks that out. Well, if there’s no Tribulation, there’s no Second Coming. If there’s no Second Coming, there’s no Thousand-Year Reign of Christ, so they wiped all that off the slate.”

      221. Another version of Constantine’s conversion is that he looked out the window and saw encroaching armies creeping towards Rome, like wolves ready to come in and take away his kingdom and life. He took a tally of all of the male population in his kingdom who would fight for him and discovered an alarming percentage were followers of Jesus – and would have to be given a very good reason for killing another man. Hence Constantines “magical” vision. And the rest is history.

      222. Philip… That covers some of the big picture, at least, from an eschatology perspective of how Christianity got corrupted in church equals “kingdom” teaching, Augustine borrowing from Origen.

        But Origen had died around AD 250, so not alive when Constantine “Christenized” the Empire with his flavor of Christianity and its sacramental false gospel – forgiveness through priests and baptism. And Augustine died around AD 430.

      223. Jeremiah 31:35-36 (NKJV)…..
        Thus says the LORD, who gives the sun for a light by day, the ordinances of the moon and the stars for a light by night, who disturbs the sea, and its waves roar (the LORD of hosts is His name): “If those ordinances depart from before Me, says the LORD, then the seed of Israel shall also cease from being a nation before Me forever.”

        Brian,

        As always, your insight is appreciated.

        I think that when we look back on “church” history we will find that many of the so-called GIANTS were not so much as “enlightened”, but rather “blinded”. And that “blindness” has been passed down from generation to generation to anyone who is willing to believe it.

        Blessings.

      224. Brian,

        I’ve had my disagreements with you in some things, but definitely not in this conversation. I’m curious as to Aidan’s originations of his theology here. Who taught him what he espouses.

        I know the Jehovah’s Witnesses have similar teachings. Kinda makes me wonder.

        Ed Chapman

      225. You’ll have to ask him, Ed. I only know Aidan from this site. I think, if I remember correctly, he affirmed earlier of having done much self study.

      226. Don’t know Ed. You’ll have to ask him. I think he mentioned having done a lot of self study.

      227. NAME CALLING: To whom it may concern.

        The use of offensive names especially to win an argument or to induce
        rejection or condemnation (as of a person or project) without objective
        consideration of the facts. – Merriam-Webster Dictionary

        Today we hear it all the time. It’s nothing new. It has been and is being done in many different
        situations. Politics and religion seem to be the most prominent today. It brings to mind this Bible
        passage: That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be
        done. So there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9

        Name calling reveals more about the one who is doing the name calling. It reveals dislike,
        contempt, and hatred. It sometimes reveals the exasperation of being unable to answer or rebut
        something said or done (Don’t like the message? Vilify the messenger.)

        Words don’t magically form in the mouth. They originate in the heart (soul), the inner person.
        “Do you not understand that everything that goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and is
        eliminated? But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man.
        For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders.” Matthew 15:17-19.

      228. LITERAL EISEGESIS:

        I have no problem with it being a physical body; but you do acknowledge that Paul says ” it is raised a spiritual body,” and “that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God” as being part of the gospel?

        Regarding the book of Revelation? Highly symbolic writing, as in Daniel, Ezekiel, Zechariah and Revelation, give numerous problems — not only to any layperson, but also to the constant student or teacher, or even to the so called scholars. Honesty and humility in study, especially of such scriptures goes a long way. But to espouse that the layperson should take a “literal understanding” to everything in God’s word, is dangerous to say the least. “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son,..”(Heb 1:1,2). Notice that it said God has spoken to us “in various ways” and not just in one “literal” way all the time. Therefore, we need to be very careful that we don’t give a “literal” interpretation to God’s word all the time.

        To say that Revelation 20 teaches (that Christ will literally return to the earth and reign for one thousand years in Jerusalem with His saints) is based on a distortion and perversion of this text. To build such a theory one must make this passage say what it does not say. It would have to mention a coming of Christ to earth, a bodily resurrection, the throne of David and reign of Christ on earth, a restoration of the nation of Israel, a rebuilding of the Temple and conversion of the Jews . All of these necessary ingredients for millennial dispensational theory, cannot be found in this passage, nor elsewhere in the Scriptures. This is a false doctrine and eisegesis at it’s highest level.

        True confidence in understanding comes from studying it (not about it).

        Regards,..Aidan.

      229. Thanks, TS00,

        I appreciate your latest posts, and the kindness of your courage while standing for what is right. I never heard of “replacement theology” and many of the other so-called theologies until very recently on this site. Everything seems so politicized to me that you can’t open your mouth and speak where the scriptures speak. Before you know it you are being pigeon – holed and branded as anti-semitic, or belonging to some type of theology. To say that there won’t be a physical kingdom on earth is not anti-semitic, nor is it turning against Israel in any way, shape, or form.

        As far as I can see, we have our king, our David, our High priest, seated on the throne in heaven. We have our heavenly Jerusalem, our heavenly zion. Jesus has a kingdom, those who are in Christ are His people, His kingdom, spiritual Israel. The old has passed away, we are under the new covenant. God wants all men to be saved, whether they are jew or gentile, there is no distinction. It is the children of promise who are regarded as the descendants, not the children of the flesh who are the children of God. And that means it is for all those are willing to obey the gospel.

        “For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.” (Acts 2:39).

      230. Phillip, I think you need to stop taking the scriptures so ‘literally’ all the time, the prophets were not meant to be understood only in one way. “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets,” (Heb 1:1). Note that God spoke through the prophets “in various ways” not just in one “literal way” as many today have mistakenly presumed.

        Jesus was never interested in establishing a worldly, earthly kingdom, with physical armies to fight, borders, and earthly thrones to see; but rather, a ‘spiritual kingdom’ not of this world, “nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”(Lk 17:21) Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”(John 18:36). The King is already ruling over His kingdom, and when He comes again it will not be to establish His Kingdom, but rather, He will deliver(hand over) the kingdom to God the Father (1 Cor 15:24).

      231. Aidan – God spoke in various ways… not with various meanings of what He said when He spoke!

        Num 12:6-8 NKJV – Then He said, “Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, [I], the LORD, make Myself known to him in a vision; I speak to him in a dream. 7 Not so with My servant Moses; He [is] faithful in all My house. 8 I speak with him face to face, Even plainly, and not in dark sayings; And he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid To speak against My servant Moses?”

        When one suggests hidden or secondary meanings, not discovered by using the normal rules of context and grammar, the Scriptures can be “made” to teach almost anything a cult leader wishes! I hope that is not what you are suggesting.

      232. “God spoke in various ways… not with various meanings of what He said when He spoke!”

        Exactly, brother.

        I guess the burning bush was just a metaphor.

      233. Ezekiel 37:15-28 (NKJV)….
        Again the word of the LORD came to me, saying, “As for you, son of man, take a stick for yourself and write on it: ‘For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions.’ Then take another stick and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions.’ Then join them one to another for yourself into one stick, and they will become one in your hand. “And when the children of your people speak to you, saying, ‘Will you not show us what you mean by these?’— say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Surely I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel, his companions; and I will join them with it, with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they will be one in My hand.”’ And the sticks on which you write will be in your hand before their eyes. “Then say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Surely I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, wherever they have gone, and will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king over them all; they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms again. They shall not defile themselves anymore with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions; but I will deliver them from all their dwelling places in which they have sinned, and will cleanse them. Then they shall be My people, and I will be their God. “David My servant shall be king over them, and they shall all have one shepherd; they shall also walk in My judgments and observe My statutes, and do them. Then they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Jacob My servant, where your fathers dwelt; and they shall dwell there, they, their children, and their children’s children, forever; and My servant David shall be their prince forever. Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them, and it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; I will establish them and multiply them, and I will set My sanctuary in their midst forevermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed I will be their God, and they shall be My people. The nations also will know that I, the LORD, sanctify Israel, when My sanctuary is in their midst forevermore.”’”

        Acts 21:6 (NKJV)…
        Therefore, when they (the 11 apostles) had come together, they asked Him (the Lord Jesus), saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”

        Poor buffoons. Where would they get such an idea?

      234. Phillip: Great post that passage knocks it out of the park. Yet when the revisionists come to play there is no end to what they can make that passage say. When you chose to Allegorize you can make any passage say anything you want it to say. The sky is the limit.

        Thanks for that post !!!

      235. phillip writes, “Acts 21:6 (NKJV)…
        Therefore, when they (the 11 apostles) had come together, they asked Him (the Lord Jesus), saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”

        Poor buffoons. Where would they get such an idea?”

        Through a misunderstanding of God’s plan.

      236. Brian, this is a response to your post on the 27th of August where you said: “Aidan – God spoke in various ways… not with various meanings of what He said when He spoke!”

        If you mean that everything God has spoken can only be interpreted or fulfilled in a “literal way,” then you are in serious trouble. You are right when you say, “God spoke in various ways,” … but the meaning was not always clear until we saw how it was later fulfilled or explained in scripture.

        It seems to me you don’t really understand God’s plan, nor the nature of His kingdom. This is the same mistake that the Jews made – even among Jesus’ early disciples.

      237. The meaning, Aidan, of all the words by prophets and apostles will always be discovered through the normal rules of grammar and context in accordance with the meaning those authors intended and understood.

        The prophecies of future events, presented with incomplete description, and often with added symbols, parabolic visions, or symbols can certainly not be dogmatically understood until another prophet or apostle says they are fulfilled. But the clearly given details of any future event, when pronounced in Scripture without symbols or in a vision, have consistently been seen fulfilled in a literal way.

        An example would be – Genesis 15:13-16 NKJV — Then He said to Abram: “Know certainly that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, and will serve them, and they will afflict them four hundred years. And also the nation whom they serve I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions. Now as for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried at a good old age. But in the fourth generation they shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete.”

        I see Jesus’ words to His apostles about the future the same way.

      238. Hey Brian, been up to my eyes this week with some overdue painting, varnishing, and fixing outside. You know how wet and windy the winters here can be.

        If I could put a few questions to you, it might better help me understand where you are coming from concerning the kingdom of God.

        1. As foretold in the O.T, when was the messianic kingdom of God to be established? Could you cite a few passages?

        2. From Jesus’ explanation, when would it be established, and would it be an earthly or spiritual kingdom?

        3. How does the church fit into this, or is there going to be another kingdom set up?

        A couple of scriptures in answering these few questions might bring some clarity between us, and get us to discussing the specifics of what the Bible actually teaches on this subject.

        Thanks,
        Aidan.

      239. Yes, Aidan, I recall those “wet and windy winters” in Ireland… and some very cool rainy summers too! 😉

        You may have forgotten, but we discussed pretty thoroughly, imo, some passages about the future literal kingdom in the land of Israel. I am thinking going over them again is not going to be much of an encouragement to either of us. 😉 Yes there is, and always has been, a spiritual kingdom of those imputed with God’s righteousness. And yes, there will be a literal fulfillment to Israel, including the church, of Jesus reigning as a physical king over the world for 1000 years. I’m guessing you already know most of the verses that are used in support of such a view.

        You won’t need to affirm to me that I was right after Jesus returns and sets up that kingdom. 🙂 We can just enjoy some good laughs and some hearty beef stew in that Millennial reign!

      240. Hey Brian,

        I have just gone over again those several posts between us regarding the Messianic kingdom. Although you recognize the present established kingdom containing both Jews and gentiles you gave no scriptural defense for your views on it? Your position is confusing. Is this present kingdom the same one that Jesus said was “at hand” in Matthew 4:17, which was established in the 1st century? Is that the Messianic kingdom that God had planned and spoken about throughout O.T. prophecy? Or, do you only see those old prophecies as referring to your future kingdom? If so, where is your O.T. scriptures for this present kingdom established in Acts 1 & 2?

        The only kingdom you gave scriptures for was from the N.T,(Mth. 19:28; and Rev. 19&20) regarding some future physical kingdom on earth that is supposed to include the physical nation of Israel and the church? But even then, these passages say nothing about most of the things you mentioned? That’s eisegesis — not exegesis! But I suspect that this is your “Messianic kingdom” spoken of in the O.T, since you still believe that the “throne of David” is yet future.

        Also, you mention two kingdoms in this last age; but the scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, make mention of only one kingdom being established? You also say that this present kingdom, which you define as made up of both Jews and gentiles joined to Him through faith, is not the church? How confusing is that, since that is the very definition of the church?

        I am not so sure that you are really interested in dealing with the scriptures! If you say that you are, then why bring up so little of it to support your assertions? And why else would you ignore scriptures that show Jesus as presently ruling as Lord of lords, and King of kings over all the earth? Perhaps, you didn’t want to deal with passages like Daniel 2 and 7; or Isaiah 9 which clearly speak of what was to occur in the 1st century. No! I don’t think you dealt with it thoroughly.

        A bit more scripture with exegesis- from your side- to back up your assertions, would have proven otherwise.

      241. You are free, Aidan, to think what you like about my interpretation skills. I think a thorough word study of the word “kingdom” will confirm the different expressions of God’s kingdom there are, including the one coming. If not before in Ireland or the US, I look forward to seeing you in Jerusalem some day! 😊

      242. If you read it carefully, Brian, you will see that my main criticism is the ‘lack of proof texts’ for your convictions. But the little you do give, could in no way be called an “exegesis” of the text itself – which is what I have a problem with..

        That the book of Revelation is highly symbolic is evidenced not only by its content, but also by the introduction. Christ “signified” the message by his angel unto John (1:1). It is thus a serious error to literalize the book of Revelation, and this is what many seem to have rushed into with the first six verses of chapter twenty.

        An examination of the first half-dozen verses of Revelation 20 evidences the following: a key, a chain, a dragon or serpent, an abyss, a thousand years, thrones, a beast, marks on foreheads and hands, and a resurrection.

        I think it’s worth questioning an interpretation which ‘dogmatically’ contends that a figurative serpent was bound with a figurative chain and thrown into a figurative abyss which was locked with a figurative lock that had a figurative key, to be confined for a literal thousand years! And, it ought to be manifestly obvious that no literal reign of Christ upon the earth is here alluded to- not even in the slightest.

        Significant Omissions:
        Perhaps this context is more significantly devastating to your “interpretation” for what it does not say, but which, if the theory were true, it surely would have mentioned. Nothing is said of:

        :Christ’s second coming;
        :the establishment of a kingdom;
        :an earthly regime;
        :a bodily reigning;
        :the throne of David; or
        :the Jews being regathered to Palestine.
        All of these elements are vitally important to the millennial view, yet they are conspicuously absent from this text!

        Conclusion
        There is no support for this theory —not in the book of Revelation, nor elsewhere in the Bible. It certainly is difficult to abandon a theory that has been entertained for many years, but when one discovers that a religious view is false, he should reject it in deference to truth.

      243. Aidan… “*Nothing* is said of: Christ’s second coming, the establishment of a kingdom, an earthly regime, a bodily reigning”… Really?

        Coming – Revelation 19:11 NKJV — Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness *He judges and makes war*.

        Kingdom – Revelation 20:4 NKJV — And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And *they lived and reigned* with Christ for a thousand years.

        Earthly regime – Revelation 20:7-9 NKJV — Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations ….They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and *the beloved city*. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them.

        Bodily reigning – Revelation 20:5 NKJV — But the rest of the dead did not *live again* until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.

        I hope you’ll read through the major prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel, and see what God promised would happen in the *land* of Israel in the future in the last days. Think how a layperson reads these passages and gets the big picture.

        Jesus comes back in Rev 19 and defeats the beast and false prophet, throwing them into hell… He reigns for 1000 years and defeats Satan who then is thrown into hell where the beast and false prophet have been for that 1000 years. What is the problem in my holding that view?

        Yes, there are symbols… but symbols point to real things, some physical and some non-physical. And some things aren’t symbols. It will all work out.

        I really do not wish to discuss this further. I know you look forward to Christ’s return as I do! What a wonderful day that will be! Blessings. Take the last word in this thread.

      244. The Lord Jesus instructed His Jewish followers to pray (Matthew 6:10 and Luke 11:2b (NKJV))…..

        “Your kingdom come (come where?). Your will be done (done where?) On earth as it is in heaven.”

        Luke 23:42 (NKJV)….
        Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”

        Notice the thief did not say “when ‘I’ come into Your Kingdom”, but rather “when ‘YOU’ come into Your kingdom.”

        Brian,

        Thanks for taking the time to address this issue.

        I fully understand that moments like this might seem futile, but it is imperative that other on-lookers here understand the crucial-ness of God fulfilling His promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; who, by the way, just so happen to be there too (Matthew 8:11). A land, a people, and a ruler is the fulfillment of the everlasting covenant (Genesis 17:7) and everlasting gospel (Revelation 14:6) God made with and preached to Abraham.

        Satan knows full well the significance of this covenant with Abraham and has done, and will continue to do, everything he can to prevent it (Revelation 12:17). Because if he is successful, he wins.

        However, God changed Jacob’s name to Israel, because Israel means “God prevails”. And so shall Israel.

        Praise to our wonderful Savior and God!

        Blessings, dear brother.

      245. Thank you Phillip. I do get encouraged with the reminder that others are reading, and hopefully benefitting from discussions of important Scriptures. I believe that the less promises of God in His Word are taken literally the less confidence the layperson will have that he can understand the Word of God and those promises written to him. He will be tempted to put his trust in man (scholars) to tell him what God wrote to him.

      246. Brian I’m actually one of those laypeople who see the literal kingdom by reading the Scriptures myself without man’s bias, so what you say is true and Phillip is correct there are others reading/listening. Thank you and🌻

      247. Reggie,

        I have been looking at the website you referenced back in June of this year. For those interested, it is….

        https://www.chosenpeople.com/site/

        On this site, under “About/Doctrinal Statement/Future” I found the below. Now while I haven’t had time as yet to scrutinized it entirely, I do agree fundamentally with the following..

        “We believe when Jesus returns he will reign over his kingdom from Jerusalem in fulfillment of the Abrahamic and Davidic covenants (Isaiah 2:1-4; 19:23-25; Micah 4:1-5; Zechariah 12:10). All nations will participate in the blessings of the earthly kingdom and share in the worship of God (Daniel 7:13-14; 9:27; Zechariah 14:16; Revelation 20:1-6). After he has put all his enemies under his feet and presents the kingdom to the Father for eternity, unbelievers will suffer unending judgment in hell (1 Corinthians 15:20-28; Revelation 20:7-15). The heavens and the earth will be made new, and believers will abide in joy and fellowship with God in the New Jerusalem forever (Isaiah 25:6-9; 65-66; Daniel 12:1-2; Revelation 21:1-22:6).”

        I also appreciate what they have to say about Israel. 🙂

        Thanks for sharing.

        Blessings.

      248. Phillip your welcome & I appreciate this disclaimer;
        [[Now while I haven’t had time as yet to scrutinized it entirely,]]
        We absolutley need to be good Bereans and to never forget His Word is our final authority. I learn much from this site and it brings comfort knowing there are like minded believers out there😊

      249. Again, Brian, in your text (REV 20:1-6); the hub of millennial dispensationalism, not one of it’s central components are seen there.
        No Second coming of Christ;
        No the establishment of an earthly kingdom;
        No throne of David; or the Jews being regathered to Palestine;
        No conversion of the Jews, or rebuilding of the Temple;
        No bodily resurrection or bodily reigning;
        No “battle of Armageddon”;
        All of these elements are vitally important to the millennial view, yet they are conspicuously absent from this text in (Rev. 20:1-6)!

        In the New Testament the Second Coming of Christ is immediately associated with 3 main events.

        1. The general resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked together unto judgment!
        “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice “and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.(John 5:28-29).

        2. His Coming is in judgment of the wicked and the righteous together.
        “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. “All the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; (Mt. 25:31,32).

        3. And, His Coming is only at the end and when He hands over of the kingdom to the Father.
        But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming, Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be destroyed is death. ( 1 Cor. 15: 23-26; remember John 5:28-29).

        The fact that millennial dispensationalism does not match anything that the scriptures teach, especially in relation to Christ’s Second Coming; means that it is a false doctrine.
        And, yes, you are quite entitled to hold your view; I just have a problem with you teaching it! And, I don’t want you or anybody else getting a terrible shock, especially in regard to salvation.

      250. Well you ignored the contextual evidence I gave, Aidan, from Rev 19 & 20 for all those markers you listed. Others will notice that.

        You said my millennial view was “false doctrine” and then made it sound like you linked it to salvation in your concluding words. I hope not. I believe your amillennial view is false doctrine, but wouldn’t think you hold to a false gospel for believing it.

      251. Hey Lads,

        Ye need to know that passages like (Isaiah 2:1-4; Micah 4:1-5; and Daniel 7:13-14;) have already been fulfilled in Christ’s first Coming, death, resurrection and ascension into heaven, the preaching of the gospel, and in the establishment of the Church.

        (Isaiah 2:1-4):
        1. “Now it will come about that In the last days” – Peter said that the “last days” had come (Acts 2:16,17).
        2. “The mountain of the house of the LORD”- Is the kingdom that was established in Peter’s day (Mk. 9:1).
        3. “To the house of the God of Jacob” – The Church is God’s House.(1 Tim.3:15; Heb 3:6, 10:21; 1 Pt.2:5).
        4. “For the law will go forth from Zion. And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” – The gospel went forth from Zion/Jerusalem unto all the nations ” and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem (Luke 24:47).”
        5. It is a gospel of peace and reconciliation.

        (Daniel 7:13-14):
        (v.13) “I kept looking in the night visions,
        And behold, with the clouds of heaven
        One like a Son of Man was coming,
        And He came up to the Ancient of Days
        And was presented before Him.”

        This has already happened when He ascended into heaven; see (Acts 1:9-11 and Acts 2:33-36)

        (v.14) “And to Him was given dominion,
        Glory and a kingdom,
        That all the peoples, nations and men of every language
        Might serve Him.
        His dominion is an everlasting dominion
        Which will not pass away;
        And His kingdom is one
        Which will not be destroyed.

        This is what Jesus was given when He sat down at the right hand of God : see (Acts 2: 33-36; Heb.1:3,8,13) also in fulfillment of (Ps.110 and Ps.2). All you have to do is read these passages and connect the dots.

      252. Well, I can see that you have been duped into believing the all things have been accomplished. Peter did NOT say that the last days had come. That’s the beginning of being duped. One of the reasons that the Jews do not believe that Jesus is Messiah, is because they think that Jesus did NOT fulfill the scriptures, hence Acts 1 where even the Apostles of Jesus asks about RESTORING THE KINGDOM.

        Jesus did NOT restore the EARTHLY KINGDOM of Israel…that don’t come until MUCH MUCH LATER in our DISTANT future, and we will probably all be dead by then.

        There is a TON of things that have yet to be accomplished.

        Ed Chapman

      253. Then, Chapman, what was Peter talking about in (Acts 2:16,17) when he said?

        “But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
        ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
        That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
        Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
        Your young men shall see visions,
        Your old men shall dream dreams.”

        And the Hebrew writer in (Heb. 1:1-2) says that we are in the last days.

        “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets,
        has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds;”

        Like many of the Jews, even his disciples were confused about the true nature of the Kingdom, which by the way, was to be established in their lifetime according to (Mark 9:1). It was to be a “spiritual kingdom” not an “earthly kingdom” like they expected.
        “And He said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.” Which is when the Church was established on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2.

      254. Aidan,

        Hello Aidan,

        Br. d kinda beat me to the punch with his comment.

        Peters reference to Joel is STILL a shadow of things to come, but is partially being done at that moment.

        Peter is talking to Jews and Jews only. And his reference of Joel is for the Jews only. This has nothing to do with Gentiles at all. Hence, the Pentecostals think they can stake claim to this, but they can’t.

        And, when reading Romans 10, put together with Romans 9 and 11, you will see that Paul’s discussion was about the Jews, and cannot be spiritualized as all Israel being the church.

        I mention this from time to time, that God deals with the Jews totally different than the Gentiles.

        Romans 4 is our example of faith. All faith is, is LIVING what you believe, and you are waiting for what was promised to materialize .

        Faith is not a mysterious word. Abraham believed God’s promise, and he lived that belief. That’s all.

        I hear all sorts of strange terms on this blog, for example, SAVING FAITH, and FAITH THAT BRINGS REPENTANCE , and a whole slew of other terms and phrases that is foreign to me as a Christian.

        Joseph…2nd in command in Egypt. That’s a shadow of Jesus, right? Joseph’s brothers thought they killed him, threw him in a pit. That’s a shadow of the death of Jesus, right?

        The brothers didn’t know who that 2nd in command was, did they? That’s a shadow of three blindness of the Jews, right?

        Joseph toyed with his brothers for a while, before finally REVEALING himself, and giving them MERCY (Romans 9-11)

        So, anyway, the kingdom’s of Israel must still be reunited, and that hasn’t happened yet.

        And Joel’s prophecy has yet to be fully fulfilled. 2,000 years ago, those Jews that were unblinded, that can see (Jesus healed the spiritually blind), that prophecy came true for them.

        But will later come true for the rest of the Jews.

        Many here think that there is no difference between Jew and Gentile…but not in this case .

      255. Aidan,

        Your Hebrews reference to “these last days”, I’m not in agreement that they mean THE last days, as most people do.

        I see THESE, coupled with last days, too mean in recent PAST.

        SUCH AS, the last few days, I spoke about blah blah.

        Ed Chapman

      256. Aidan,

        I also understand that you don’t believe in dispensationalism.

        That’s pretty easy to figure out really.

        But I’ll give a hint. Jesus said that when you (Jews) see the OBAMA NATION of desolation standing in the Holy Place…

        That’s THE anti-Christ.

        The Holy Place is none other than the temple.

        THE anti-Christ has not come on three scene yet, and there is no temple at three moment, so in order for Jesus’ words to be fulfilled, a new Temple must be built.

        The Jews are still awaiting a messiah (christ).

        That anti-Christ is the one who will try to convince the Jews that he is the long awaited CHRIST.

        That hasn’t happened yet.

        Revelation is pretty easy to figure out, too, cuz the figures are explained in some cases.

        Daniel 9 explains a lot, too.

        And, there are references in the Hebrew scriptures that state that the Jews are REGATHERED in Israel.

        You are right… there is no reference about them regathering in Palestine. Israel, yes, Palestine, no.

        And there is so so so much more, including the rapture, which I’m sure you don’t believe in.

        As the days of Noah were… the Ark was above the earth while destruction happened below.

        Jesus is the Ark. The ark is a SHADOW of the rapture.

        As Brian tried to say, some prophecies are straight forward, others are hard to find, but they are there.

        And as I’ve been saying, lots of prophecy is about three Jews only, not the world, altho the world may participate in it .

        And still there is so much more. Some erroneously think that the Pope is THE anti Christ. To me, that’s funny.

        The anti Christ will probably be a Jew, since Jews believe that their messiah is the son of David (a Jew).

        But, I digress. Maybe he is Italian? American? Leader of the United Nations? All the world is guessing.

        Ed Chapman

      257. Thanks BR.D, I will have a look at that site and perhaps catch up with you at some point later.

      258. Thanks Aidan.
        Even though – as I’ve said – I don’t have any bone in that topic – I do happen to know the phrase “now but not yet” is something you’ll hear in a Seminary class on eschatology.

      259. Edward, please forgive me for having called you by your Surname in my last post. I much prefer to call you by your first name. But I think you are terribly mistaken in believing that Peter’s message was only meant for Jews only. There are a number of reasons why I believe this message was for all men.
        1. Remember that (Acts 2) was the start of the Great Commission to preach the gospel unto ” all nations beginning at Jerusalem” as commanded by Jesus in (Luke 24:46-49).
        2. In Acts 1:8; Jesus again reminds His apostles of their Commission– unto all the nations beginning from Jerusalem.
        “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
        3. When the Holy Spirit came upon the apostles in Jerusalem as promised, Peter stands up (Acts 2:14) and delivers the first gospel message concerning Jesus Christ.
        4. But notice there in (Acts 2:16,17) that he had to explain to the crowd what they had seen concerning the coming of the Holy Spirit. Peter tells them that this was the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy concerning the “last days”.

        (v.16). “But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
        (v.17). ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
        That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
        Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
        Your young men shall see visions,
        Your old men shall dream dreams.

        But again, notice v.17, that this promise of God, was, “That I will pour out of My Spirit on ALL FLESH.” In other words, it was not just for the Jews only — but for “all flesh.” The record shows in Acts 10:45 ” that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. We know that miraculous gifts were given to both jew and gentile alike, in various churches throughout the world in N.T. times.

        Not only that, but Peters command that same day in Acts 2, for them to repent and be baptized for their salvation; without him realizing it, included the gentiles also (Acts 2:38-39). The term ” and all who are afar off” in v.39 is an expression that refers to the gentiles (cf..Eph. 2:11-17).

        I think the record shows that what Peter, along with the other apostles, spoke on that day, was not just for the Jews alone — but their Commission (beginning from Jerusalem) was for all men — for the salvation of both Jew and Gentile alike. It just took them a while to realize this as seen in Acts 10.

      260. Aidan,

        No worries regarding my name. My comments are usually from “chapmaned24”, but I was at work, using my phone, and my phone could not log into WordPress, or even my Google Account for some reason here, so I had to input my name and email address.

        Now, regarding your response…

        You had said:
        “But I think you are terribly mistaken in believing that Peter’s message was only meant for Jews only. ”

        My response:

        I don’t at all. For one, Peter NEVER REALIZED that the Gospel was for the Gentiles at all at THAT POINT. In addition, at that point, the only ones who were, what is word, SAVED? Was Jews only. So, at that point, Peter was discussing JEWISH PROPHESY, not GENTILE prophesy.

        Not only that, but…as Joel states, which Peter stated, which you NEGLECT to FINISH Peter’s statement, there has been NO TIME WHATSOEVER that verse 20 states: The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come:

        And that verse CLEARLY shows a FUTURE event. So, in other words, you didn’t FINISH what Peter had said in its fullest context.

        Great and notable day of the Lord. Moon into blood.

        Joel 2:31
        The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord come.

        Great and TERRIBLE day of the Lord come.

        Revelation 6:12
        And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;

        The SIXTH seal of Revelation.

        In addition, it wasn’t until what? Acts 9 or so that Peter FINALLY understood that the gospel was also for the Gentiles? Up to that point, the only ones who the GOSPEL to all the world was preached was to JEWS, and there was JEWS all over the world at that point.

        All those at Pentecost were Jews, for it is appointed that all Jews gather in Jerusalem THREE TIMES PER YEAR, and one of those times is PENTECOST, and another is PASSOVER. I can’t remember, at the moment, what the THIRD one is. I’d have to look again.

        Lastly, Peter, James, and John were APOSTLES to the Jews, whereas Paul was the Apostle to the Gentiles.

        Galatians 2:7-9
        7 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;

        8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)

        9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.

        So, when you read the books of James, and Peter, and John, you will see that the audience is PRIMARILY for the Jews.

        And when you see “FOR THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN JEW AND GENTILE”, you should see that it has a SPECIFIC CONTEXT, NOT RELATED to what I am discussing.

        Romans 16:4
        Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.

        CHURCHES OF THE GENTILES…

        Do you really think that Jews and Gentiles actually attended the same CHURCH SERVICES? My goodness, Jews have NOTHING IN COMMON with Gentiles SOCIALLY. CHURCHES OF THE GENTILES should tell you that there are CHURCHES OF THE JEWS.

        And a COMMON phrase is what the Bible shows as the JEWS BEING A PEOPLE, and the the GENTILES ARE NOT A PEOPLE, but NOW WE ARE, and they aren’t, BUT WILL BE AGAIN.

        There is so much that you are NEGLECTING.

        If you click my name (chapmaned24), you will get to my WordPress site. The first post you will see a place to click that will open up a Microsoft word document. It’s a time table of REVELATION. It’s only one page. I don’t claim it to be accurate, but I do claim it to be MINE, in what I think.

        The WOES have not happened yet. There are THREE WOES. The first woe hasn’t even happened yet. Remember the MOON AND BLOOD THING that Peter discussed regarding Joel? What SEAL is that again? And within WHICH WOE is it in?

        There is a good layout of the chronology based on Woe number 1, woe number 2, and woe number 3. The third woe is the opening of the 7th seal.

        Chapter 16 is Armegeddon, but chapters 17-19 is EXPLANATIONS of the PREVIOUS chapters…then we hit your FAMOUS chapter 20.

        Now…you had in another comment to someone:

        “I have no problem with it being a physical body; but you do acknowledge that Paul says ” it is raised a spiritual body,” and “that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God” as being part of the gospel?”

        My response:

        I think you don’t have a grasp on the word “spiritual” here. My KJV in 1 Cor 15:36-END shows a distinction between a NATURAL body, and a SPIRITUAL body.

        And the ONLY distinction is:
        Natural dies, spiritual doesn’t, but both are physical.

        Natural has blood, spiritual does not.

        Jesus body at his resurrection is a spiritual body, PHYSICAL, with holes in his hands and feet, as attested by doubting Thomas.

        And scripture states that they (JEWS) will mourn over the one that the pierced. THAT HASN’T HAPPENED YET.

        So, in conclusion, When you see in the gospels that Jesus did NOT COME but for the LOST SHEEP OF THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL, and that the DISCIPLES were NOT to go to the GENTILES…

        And later when Jesus tells John that he has OTHER SHEEP (after he rose from the dead), you will see that GO YE (the great commission) was regarding the gospel to the Jews).

        Paul was LATER destined for the GENTILES.

        And, since Gentiles were NEVER a part of the “OLD TESTAMENT” to begin with, do you think that Paul gave a list of 613 commandments to everyone he came across? I don’t think so. But what say you?

        Are Gentiles allowed in JEWISH SYNAGOGUES?

        Ed Chapman

      261. Aidan,

        Using biblegateway.com, do a word search of the words, “DAY OF THE LORD”.

        That is a FUTURE event.

        2 Peter 3:10
        But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

        Zechariah 14 King James Version (KJV)

        1 Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee.

        2 For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.

        3 Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.

        4 And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.

        5 And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.

        AND ALL THE SAINTS WITH THEE

        Those six words are VERY IMPORTANT.

        Ed Chapman

      262. Aidan,

        And another thing…

        Three times in the bible (including the NT Gospel), it is stated, “Heaven is my throne, the EARTH is my FOOTSTOOL”.

        THREE TIMES.

        Isaiah 66:1
        Thus saith the Lord, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?

        Acts 7:49
        Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest?

        Matthew 5:34-36
        But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God’s throne: Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King.

        NOW, THE FOLLOWING IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT TO THIS…

        Ezekiel 43:7
        And he said unto me, Son of man, the place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel for ever, and my holy name, shall the house of Israel no more defile, neither they, nor their kings, by their whoredom, nor by the carcases of their kings in their high places.

        THE EARTH IS NO LONGER JUST GOD’S (Jesus) footstool, but also his THRONE, too.

        Where ever the THRONE of God is, THAT IS HEAVEN. And HEAVEN WILL BE EARTH, for heaven is always the THRONE OF GOD.

        EARTH WILL BE HEAVEN. Earth is ETERNAL (abides forever). Ecclesiastes 1:4 …the earth abideth for ever.

        Ed Chapman

      263. GraceAdict,

        Thank you Grace!

        Anytime someone states something like, “Nowhere in the bible can you find blah blah…”, I take that as a challenge, cuz I already know that “I’ve read that somewhere before…let me find it again!”.

        So I take it as a challenge to them.

        Ed Chapman

      264. Aidan,

        And another thing…

        I see that you don’t believe in ONCE SAVED ALWAYS SAVED. Now, I am not a Calvinist, and I am also NOT a Baptist. I’m just a LOWLY NON-DENOMINATION CHRISTIAN.

        But I believe in ONCE SAVED ALWAYS SAVED. Your example of LORD LORD, DIDN’T WE DO BLAH BLAH is NOT the example that I look to regarding losing salvation. I see that is NOT SAVED IN THE FIRST PLACE.

        Born again…many have no clue what that really means. They think that it means FIRST, BORN OF THE FLESH, and THEN born of the spirit.

        But no…it’s both born of the spirit, hence the word AGAIN. Jesus was NOT discussing the FLESH at all. Nicodemus was.

        Now, we MUST acknowledge that the LAW OF CHRIST is NOT the same as the LAW of MOSES.

        We are under the LAW OF CHRIST, which is the LAW OF FAITH (Believing in God’s PROMISE, JUST LIKE ABRAHAM), not the law of works (EARNING YOUR WAY).

        Tell me, did Abraham have ANY of the Law of Moses? If so, WHY DID ABRAHAM SLEEP WITH HIS SISTER, AND GOD GAVE SISTER AND BROTHER AN INBRED SON? Isn’t that a sin? Several times, Leviticus states that it is a HUGE SIN. OUCH.

        So, do Christians sin? Of course they do, but as a Christian, ANYTHING NOT OF FAITH IS SIN. To those under the law of Moses, sin is the transgression of the law.

        We only have 2 commandments under the law of Christ. Love God, and Love people. Under the law of Moses…613 of those blasted commandments.

        And, according to Paul, in Romans 7, even tho he sins, IT’S NOT HIM THAT IS SINNING, BUT HIS BODY, and this body still sins til we die, so YOU still sin, and YOU cannot lose your salvation.

        Hebrews 13 tells us that God will never leave us nor forsake us. Where ever you go, there HE is. You can’t leave him, because you can’t be BORN AGAIN if you do.

        Born AGAIN, or BORN OF GOD…AGAIN…simply means that GOD LIVES WITH YOU…AGAIN. He lived with you ONCE BEFORE…and when you got knowledge of sin, THEN YOU DIED, GOD DEPARTED YOU, HENCE, NEEDING TO BE BORN ONE MORE TIME (AGAIN) OF GOD.

        You CAN’T loose your salvation. For those who LOST THEIR FAITH, I conclude that they were NEVER ROOTED, therefore, never saved to begin with.

        Ed Chapman

      265. Hi Edward,

        In one of your last posts you denied saying that you believe Peter’s message (including the Joel prophecy) was meant for Jews only. You said, “I don’t at all.” Below, is a compilation of some of the things you said:

        Edward’s comments:
        “Peter is talking to Jews and Jews only. And his reference of Joel is for the Jews only. This has nothing to do with Gentiles at all.”

        “So, at that point, Peter was discussing JEWISH PROPHESY, not GENTILE prophesy.”

        “So, in conclusion, When you see in the gospels that Jesus did NOT COME but for the LOST SHEEP OF THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL, and that the DISCIPLES were NOT to go to the GENTILES…”

        “And later when Jesus tells John that he has OTHER SHEEP (after he rose from the dead), you will see that GO YE (the great commission) was regarding the gospel to the Jews).”
        “Paul was LATER destined for the GENTILES.”

        My response:
        I think it’s clear, Edward — that you did say Peter’s reference to Joel was for the Jews only, and not for the Gentiles at all. And also, except for Paul, “that GO YE (the great commission) was regarding the gospel to the Jews).”

        All Flesh – Acts 2:17 NKJV – I think would seem to indicate a ‘world view’ rather than “Jews only.” All shall be beneficiaries of the Spirit and His work, both Gentile and Jew.

        The Great Commission – Mark 16:15,16 NASB – And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.”
        Therefore, under the Great Commission – there was always only one gospel for all creation. Yes, Paul was sent primarily to the Uncircumcised, and Peter to the Circumcised – but they preached the same gospel according to Peter in Acts 15:7-9.

        A Christian is saved – by grace – only in Christ.

        Some Christians at Galatia were told:
        “You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.” – Galatians 5:4 NASB
        How can a man still be saved, if he falls from grace and is severed from Christ? Wouldn’t they need to repent in order to be grafted back into Christ, and into His grace? Those who teach that these men – severed from Christ and fallen from grace – could not be lost, are teaching a lie!

        And, Edward, concerning the resurrection; how did you miss the fact that I said – “I have no problem with it being a physical body?” Go back and read it properly, this time!
        I find that your posts are disjointed and all over the place, jumping from one thing to another. They often seem to ramble on with a lot assumptions and foolish speculations. You have pretty much shown that you are not really interested in hearing the truth. As long as you keep rejecting what the bible teaches, and coming up with what’s in your own head and theology – you will never be able to find the truth!

        But it seems you are not alone in this!

      266. Aidan,

        Yes, I still stand by my statement that Peter’s words were for the JEWS ONLY in Acts 2.

        I, as many CHRISTIANS do, believe in a rapture, and we, who do, DO NOT BELIEVE that we will be here when the MOON TURNS TO BLOOD, as Peter quoted Joel.

        But the Jews who are NOT SAVED…they will indeed be here for THAT EVENT. Believers WILL NOT BE HERE.

        It is my contention that when THE Jews gets the blinders removed, that THOSE JEWS will SEE VISIONS, SPEAK IN TONGUES, etc. NOT THE GENTILES.

        YOU acknowledge in John 6 that Jesus was speaking TO THE JEWS, not the Gentiles, but you think that Peter’s words were to the GENTILES and the Jews? That’s kinda weird if ya ask me. ALL FLESH has a CONTEXT of the JEWS ONLY, JUST LIKE JOHN 6.

        Are YOU gonna be here when the moon turns to blood? Probably NOT since you think that already happened, huh?

        And yes, I did see your CORRECTION about the PHYSICAL BODIES. My point in bringing it up, is that you are CHANGING YOUR MIND as you go along in the conversation, first by admonishing those who believe in physical bodies, and when confronted, THEN you change your mind, which shows that you should not have admonished ANYONE about it in the first place. You seem to be SO SURE of yourself when you speak, but it is clear that you don’t really know as much as you think you do, accusing some of eisegesis, when you need to HEED to the advice of others, which can prove your statements WRONG.

        Finally, your Galatians reference, SOME WHERE TRYING TO BE RIGHT WITH GOD BY OBEYING THE LAW, therefore, THEY WERE NOT CHRISTIANS TO BEGIN WITH. You can’t lose your salvation if you never had salvation. Those people were putting themselves under the OLD COVENANT, not the NEW.

        Ed Chapman

      267. Aidan,

        Regarding Acts 2, PUT YOURSELF IN PETER’S MIND SET regarding the GENTILES…

        Acts 10:28
        And he said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation

        So, when Jesus announced THE GREAT COMMISSION, Peter did not believe that the WHOLE WORLD involved Gentiles at all.

        So, when Peter is speaking to the Jews in Acts 2, HE HIMSELF believed that “ALL FLESH” did NOT entail GENTILES at all.

        And therefore, his statement regarding “ALL FLESH” only pertained to the Jews, just like what you conclude regarding John Chapter 6.

        Ed Chapman

      268. Aidan,

        Do you know why I JUMP ALL OVER THE PLACE? Because I scroll to see your comments to various people, and I chime in as I see your comments, WITHOUT closing out my comments to you. So, I bounce around based on YOUR comments to people.

        The common denominator is that you don’t believe in DISPENSATIONALISM, and I provide DOCUMENTED BIBLE VERSES to PROVE YOU WRONG. Read the verses that I provided, as you have NOT COMMENTED on those back to me as of yet. You have yet to say ONE WORD about those verses, except to say that ALL means GENTILES and Jews, which I find amusing since you concur with me regarding ALL in John 6 as Jews only.

        And, SOMEONE (Grace Addict) seems to give me praises for providing my comments, BUT YOU ADMONISH ME for doing so. So, I take the praise, and reject your admonishment for…rambling?

        Lastly, since I believe in DISPENSATIONALISM, and KNOWING that John is an APOSTLE TO THE JEWS, and knowing that I believe in a rapture, I can ONLY CONCLUDE that the book of REVELATION is FOR THE JEWS, TO THE JEWS, cuz BELIEVERS WILL NOT BE HERE for it, so we don’t need to know about DRAGONS, and all that SYMBOLOGY stuff to begin with.

        But the Jews do. YOU spiritualise ISRAEL. We don’t. The Church is NOT ISRAEL. Jacob is Israel, AND WE ARE NOT JACOB’S CHILDREN.

        Romans 9-11 is about the JEWS, not the Gentiles. NOT THE CHURCH (BOTH JEW AND GENTILE).

        Ed Chapman

      269. Aidan,

        Continuing my “disjointed” rambling to you…didn’t Jesus say something about the MEEK INHERIT the EARTH? How do YOU put that into context in your disbelief that there will be an EARTHLY Kingdom of Jesus ruling from an EARTHLY Throne?

        Ed Chapman

      270. Aidan,

        EARTH, BUDDY! A NEW EARTH.

        Revelation 21
        And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. …

        2 Peter 3:13
        Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

        Isaiah 65:17
        For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

        Isaiah 66:22
        For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain.

        Matthew 5:5
        Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

      271. Hey Ed,
        Once again I want to say good posts…I am very much enjoying the scriptures you have posted to make your arguments.

      272. Grace,

        Thank you. It’s strange that Aidan won’t even acknowledge them, but accuses people of not wanting to know his version of THE truth. He leaves out a lot of info.

        Ed Chapman

      273. Aidan,

        Just to clarify, I was not denying what I said. I was denying something that YOU had said to me, to wit:

        You said to me, “But I think you are terribly mistaken…”, to which I replied, “I don’t at all.”

        So, I was not denying what I said. As a matter of fact, I doubled down on what I said.

        Ed Chapman

      274. Aidan,

        You had said, “All shall be beneficiaries of the Spirit and His work, both Gentile and Jew.”

        My response:

        I don’t buy into that logic at all. The Jews are treated differently than the Gentiles. God is the one who blinded the Jews. He didn’t blind the Gentiles. Not only that, ALL OF GOD’S CREATION of mankind will not see visions, speak in tongues, etc., as you think Peter said. Gentiles don’t have a remnant as discussed in scripture, either. Gentiles are not the elect, either.

        The only thing that “There is no Jew or Gentile” pertains to, are those “IN CHRIST”. If they are not “IN CHRIST”, then there is a difference between Jew and Gentile. It’s the difference between old testament and new testament. There has never been a Gentile under the old covenant, ever. That’s an obvious difference between Jew and Gentile.

        I don’t disagree that there is one gospel.

        I disagree how you apply scripture, thinking that everything Peter states is the gospel. Peter quotes a prophesy, and you determine it to be gospel… to all of God’s human creation.

        I don’t, as I see that the prophesy that he quoted pertains to the audience he was talking to…Jews only. Moon turn to blood does not pertain to us, or any Gentile whatsoever.

        But I am amused at your dogmatic RELIGIOUS wording regarding, “His WORK”.

        You seem to think that you know HIS WORK.

        How many Jews have you preached the gospel to? Is there any example in the bible where Gentiles brought the gospel to the Jews?

        My humble opinion is that God’s work must first entail God taking the blinders off of a Jew first, in order for a Jew to be able to SEE, hear, and perceive. If God does not did that, then there is a reason. What’s the reason?

        Jews cannot see. But you think that they can. If only they would listen to you, right?

        There is a difference between Jew and Gentile.

        The unbelieving Jews still have things to do, such as, build a temple in which Jesus said that David prophesied about regarding the abomination of desolation standing in the Holy Place.

        That’s God’s work.

        He has a plan of mercy to the Jews that he himself blinded.

        But you think there is no difference between Jew and Gentile?

        Okee Dokee.

        Ed Chapman

      275. To clarify my last, I had said, “or any Gentile whatsoever”.

        That needs to be modified to include the word believers after the word Gentile.

        Oops.

        Ed Chapman

      276. Right, Edward,
        1. It’s up to me to prove or disprove all your assertions? I think that’s your job, Edward – with a scriptural exegesis of the passages. But the problem is, that even when you do use scripture, you often impose so many assertions into and onto the text – (eisegesis). There’s just too much to untangle – you need to slow down.

        2. John 6: I don’t recall any discussion between us on that passage? You’ll need to quote what I said and it’s context.

        3. ASSERTIONS YOU MADE WITHOUT SCRIPTURAL, EXEGETICAL, PROOF:

        a. The assertion- about a Rapture?

        b. The assertion- that all the Jews will be converted and speak in tongues in the future?

        c. The assertion- that the Moon will “literally” turn into blood in the future?

        d. The assertion- that I was proven wrong – that flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of God?

        e. The assertion- that a man can be “in Christ” and also “under grace” and yet, not have salvation?

        f. The assertion- that Jesus did not mean “the whole world” in the Great Commission in (Mk.16:15-16; Mt.28:18-20; Luke 24:46-48; Acts 1:8)?

        g. The assertion- that the Holy Spirit did not mean “all mankind” in Acts 2:17?

        h. The assertion- that the book of Revelation was only written for the Jews?

        i. The assertion- that the Church has not now become God’s true people and nation; His true sons in Romans 9:8, 24-27?

        j. The assertion- that just because Jesus, or Peter, were speaking to Jews at the time – that it’s application is only to the Jews? If so, that would mean that much of the sermon on the Mount would only apply to the Jews, including the parables etc…

        Finally, you asked me about the meek inheriting the earth, in connection with your so-called earthly kingdom.

        The difference is, is there is scriptural proof that the meek shall inherit the earth. And that it will be a new heavens and a new earth – whatever that entails (2 Pt. 3:13).
        But there is also overwhelming scriptural proof, that Jesus, who ascended into heaven and was seated at the right hand of God (Acts 2:32-36; Heb. 1:3,13) will remain ruling at God’s right hand until all enemies are made a footstool for His feet. This means that He will continue to rule at God’s right hand until the last day, until even death — the final enemy — is completely destroyed; see..(1 Cor.15:23-27; John 5:28-29) This was in direct fulfillment of O.T. prophecies like Psalms 110, Psalms 2, and Dan 7: 13-14; etc..)

        The language in these New Testament passages are plain and simple – they are not like the highly symbolic and figurative language that we so often see in prophecy and poetry.

        When someone therefore presents an interpretation around the more obscure, figurative passages; that is in stark contradiction to the many plain passages of Scripture – then that interpretation is always wrong and must be immediately rejected.

      277. Aidan,

        I can’t slowdown..lol. When people like you speak, I got a lot to say, and I can type very fast on a keyboard. Not so fast on a phone, tho.

        I’m at work, but I look forward to addressing your comment later.

        I don’t buy into your exegesis at all. Besides, I think that word is overrated with amateurs like yourself, being a novis.

        And, anyone disagreeing with you, you think you can use the word, eisegesis at your leisure, trying to make yourself into an expert.

        I’m not buying it.

        I use scripture back at you, and you still did not address those verses… I’M STILL WAITING.

        Ed Chapman

      278. Here is one ya missed…

        Jesus ascended to heaven, angel said he will come back just as they saw him leave. That’s in acts chapter 1.

        Why would be come back the same way he left?

        Ed Chapman

      279. By the way, Edward, I don’t know what gave you the idea that I reject the truth about a new Heavens and a new earth? Never did, never will.

        And, I am not ignoring your posts: I am at work full time and live in Ireland with a several hour time difference between us. Maybe I’m slower with my responses than you, but, as mentioned, I do have other responsibilities to take care of.

      280. Aidan,

        As do I, so I hear ya. When i get home, I’m usually asleep by 7 pm. But I wake up at 3 am to do internet stuff before I go to work at 6 am.

        Lots to say, limited time. Then when I think I’m finished, something else comes to mind.

        Don’t let it bother ya, tho. Conversation is good. Your truth isn’t my truth. But my truth is closer to this blogs truth than yours is, and I’m not a Baptist or a Calvinist.

        Ed Chapman

      281. Ed,

        I NEED TO CORRECT SOME MISUNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT WHAT YOU THINK I BELIEVE

        You said:

        1. “Not only that, ALL OF GOD’S CREATION of mankind will not see visions, speak in tongues, etc., as you think Peter said.”

        My response:

        If you mean, EVERY PERSON UNDER CREATION; will see visions, speak in tongues? No! That’s not what I think Peter said! First of all, it is only individuals who come to Christ. These individuals would come to Christ from both groups, as the gospel is preached among all the nations.

        Yet, even though God wants all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth, not all have been willing. It was only among those who came to Christ who would be saved and receive the Spirit.

        This then is what was intended by God in Joel’s prophecy in Acts 2 concerning “all flesh” being the beneficiaries of the Spirit and His work.. Namely, that after the apostles received the outpouring of the Spirit on that occasion; the gospel then being preached to the Jews first, it would also be later carried to the Gentiles; and that the outpouring of the Spirit in (Acts 10) upon Cornelius and his household confirms not only the Gentiles’ acceptance of the gospel, but God’s acceptance of them.. Phillip had four virgin daughters who prophesied (Acts 21:9), and Paul tells of women who prophesied (1 Cor. 11:5).

        This receiving of the Spirit, among those who believed, would be without distinction of nationality- Jew and Gentile; without distinction of age- “old men and young men,” without distinction of sex- “sons and daughters,” and without distinction of social order- “menservants(slaves) and maidservants(female slaves).” The New Testament recognizes this principle of no distinction in Christ (Gal. 3:28).

        It is concluded , therefore, that what took place on Pentecost marked the beginning of the complete fulfillment of Joel’s word.

        You also said:

        2. “The only thing that “There is no Jew or Gentile” pertains to, are those “IN CHRIST”. If they are not “IN CHRIST”, then there is a difference between Jew and Gentile.”

        My response:

        AMEN! “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28 NKJV. But again, not so in the world!

      282. Aidan,

        I’m still not buying what you are selling. I do NOT believe that ALL WHO COME TO CHRIST are gonna be seeing visions, speaking in tongues, etc.

        Peter was quoting a prophesy that is EXCLUSIVE for the Jews only. Period.

        I will respond to the rest of your 2 comments at another time, maybe Saturday, cuz right now, I’ll just go off the rails on ya. And why? Cuz you have this strange notion that the bible is all about POETRY, or SYMBOLOGY. To me, ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE BLUE is poetry.

        When YOU are ready to ENGAGE, by responding to MY ACTUAL PROVIDED VERSES, then we can talk. But I will respond to your a, b, c’s a bit later.

        I provided a lot of verse’s from the bible that IS NOT POETRY (but I don’t believe that the Bible has ROSES ARE RED VIOLETS ARE BLUE, cuz I have never seen poetry in the Bible at all, ever).

        I suppose that you think that a TALKING DONKEY is kinda OUT THERE in lala land, too, huh? Poetry?

        Ed Chapman

      283. I hesitate to comment on this subject, as those who are convinced ‘all Jews will be saved’ always appear unwilling to even consider the logical inconsistencies this assertion introduces into Romans. I will offer a few thoughts which I believe might be helpful, but don’t really intend to engage in endless debate.

        A helpful comment by Dave Vermeulen on another site reads:

        “Seems to me “Israel” is used two ways in Romans 9-11. Both ways can be found in a single verse – ‘They are not all Israel who are of Israel’ (Rom.9:6). Throughout the discussion, Paul alternates between using ‘Israel’ as the ethnic nation, on the one hand, and as some sub-group, on the other (context is so important).
        Paul makes this clear with his olive tree illustration. Some Jewish branches were broken off (of Israel) and some remained. The latter made the transition of faith into Christ, and have been joined by like-minded Gentiles (wild branches grafted in). The tree is comprised only of those who believe in Christ, and are part of the New Covenant – whether Jew or Gentile. Yet, the tree, as always, is [called] Israel (Jer.11:16). In Paul’s context, this multi-racial group of believers (the olive tree) is the Israel of whom all will be saved.
        It would be strange for Paul, in 11:25-26 to claim that all ethnic Israel will be saved, when he had, earlier in the same discussion, said plainly that only a ‘remnant will be saved’ (9:27).”

        Paul first points out what all Jews understood: not all who are Abraham’s seed are Israel. All Israelites knew this. They knew that Abraham had other children and descendants who were not considered ‘Israel’; only the seed of Jacob was considered ‘Israel’. From here Paul went on to make a similar distinction: just as all who are of the seed of Abraham are not considered Israel, so too not all who are the seed of Jacob are considered (by God) as ‘Israel’.

        This is an important point which so many attempt to just cruise right past. If Paul is not making a distinction between ethnic Israel and spiritual Israel – or whatever terms you prefer – then what exactly is he saying? It would be illogical to say not all national Israel is of national Israel. That would be nonsensical! If someone stated that not all martians are of [from] Mars, people would consider them crazy; there has to be two meaning for the one word for such a statement to make any sense.

        I can see no other rational interpretation than that Paul is saying the ‘Israel’ of promise, of which all will be saved, is different than which was commonly considered to be Israel, which only required the right genetics, or being naturalized, circumcised and adhering to the Law. If there is another possible interpretation, I would love to hear it.

        This is essentially the same distinction made concerning what is today called ‘The Church’. Some refer to this as the visible church and the True Church. Not all who go to or are members of a ‘church’ are considered (by God) as ‘The Church’ (which is not really a good translation, but is what is most commonly used.) All of the promises given to ‘The Church’ [ekklesia], were not intended for all who are called ‘the church’ in this world.

        Thus, all ‘The Church’ will be saved does not mean that all who are card-carrying, tithe-paying, scripture-quoting members of the church will be saved; rather, those who are truly, as known only by God, sincere children of God. I would assert that ‘not all who are of Israel are Israel’ means the exact same thing as ‘not all who are of the church are The Church’. He is essentially stating the original ‘You keep using that word, but it doesn’t mean what you think it means.’

        ‘Thus, all Israel will be saved’ follows directly after Paul’s declaration that not all who are of Israel are Israel. It seems to me that those who assert that all Jews will be saved must toss aside Paul’s vital clarification and make his words mean exactly the opposite of what he so carefully set forth.

        So, two questions.

        1.) Do your beliefs concerning all national Israel being saved include naturalized citizens of Israel, who were not the seed of Abraham?
        2.) If Paul is not indicating that there are two distinct meanings attributed to the same word ‘Israel’, requiring careful consideration when the word is used in scripture, what does he mean?

        As to the assertion that Jews are judged differently than others because the only reason they did not believe was because God blinded them, this is also in direct contradiction to countless scriptures. Why does Paul say most Jews do not believe? Because they sought to attain salvation through the Law, and because they refused to believe in Jesus. This is nothing like ‘because God temporarily blinded them so that they could not understand’. It would be silly of Jesus to say:

        “I spread out my hands all the day
        to a rebellious people,
        who walk in a way that is not good,
        following their own devices;
        a people who provoke me
        to my face continually,
        sacrificing in gardens
        and burning incense upon bricks;
        who sit in tombs,
        and spend the night in secret places;
        who eat swine’s flesh,
        and broth of abominable things is in their vessels;
        who say, “Keep to yourself,
        do not come near me, for I am set apart from you.”
        These are a smoke in my nostrils,
        a fire that burns all the day.
        Behold, it is written before me:
        “I will not keep silent, but I will repay,
        yea, I will repay into their bosom
        their[a] iniquities and their[b] fathers’ iniquities together,
        says the Lord;
        because they burned incense upon the mountains
        and reviled me upon the hills,
        I will measure into their bosom
        payment for their former doings.”

        if all he meant by that was that the Jews only resisted God because they had been temporarily blinded by him. No these verses spell out, at great length, that the people had chosen to be stubborn, rebellious and resistant, making God angry and prepared to punish them. How silly to be angry and punish those who are only blind because you made them thus. (Sounds a lot like Calvinism.)

        Paul also says in Romans 9:31-33

        “. . . that Israel who pursued the righteousness which is based on law did not succeed in fulfilling that law. Why? Because they did not pursue it through faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the stumbling stone, as it is written,

        “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone that will make men stumble,
        a rock that will make them fall;
        and he who believes in him will not be put to shame.”

        Does this appear to affirm that Israel stumbled because they were blinded by God? No, but because of their refusal to put their faith in Jesus instead of their precious Law. Who will not be put to shame? All Israel, after God ‘unblinds’ them? No, but only those who believe. As the earlier quote mentioned, it would be contradictory and silly of Paul to state both that ‘all [national] Israel will be saved’ and only ‘a remnant will be saved’.

      284. TS00,

        I do not see Paul alternating between THE CHURCH and Ethnic Israel. I see him discussing the Salvation of the BLIND (extremely important key word that seems to get missed) Jews, who are USED by God what and WHO the PROMISE is.

        The other key word that I see in Romans 9-11 is the word MERCY, and that MERCY is given to THOSE blind Jews. They are not blind due to disobedience. They are disobedient because God wanted it that way, cuz God is the one who blinded them. Yes, God wanted them to kill Jesus. If they were not blinded by God, Jesus would not have died on that cross, and we would not be grafted.

        NOTICE Romans 9-11 states that not all of ABRAHAM’S seed is Israel. Then clarifies that with the prerequisite of the children of promise. Who was that (in the FLESH)? Isaac (as opposed to Ismael). Israel was JACOB. And Jacob is the Son of the Promise. So, we are children of the SPIRITUAL promise. And Jesus is that Promise, for those BLIND Jews, as well as us.

        This is not a story about us Gentiles.

        I keep bringing up the prophesy of Joseph and his BROTHERS.

        The brothers had no idea who Joseph was that was feeding them. Joseph REVEALED (key word) himself to them. And Joseph gave them ALL mercy for what they did to him.

        That is prophesy of the relationship that Jesus has with the Jews, and people ignore it. I have no idea why.

        Paul wants ISRAEL to be saved NOW. But he is showing that in the end, they will indeed ALL be saved…all because they don’t know who Jesus is, but Jesus will reveal himself, and they will mourn.

        Just because Paul said, Not all Israel is of Israel, is the contentious wording, but later Paul discusses ABRAHAM and the Promise, which shows that ISMAEL, A SON OF ABRAHAM, is NOT the promise.

        I will never see Romans 9-11 discussing the church as Israel. The only common denominator is that in both cases, JESUS is the savior. We are not blind…they are, and they all, who are blind, gets mercy and is saved. And that’s how chapter 11 ends. Gospel.

        Paul explains of himself WHY he got mercy. Do you know why?

        Ed Chapman

      285. TS00,

        This may be a duplicate response, so bare with me…sorry:

        TS00,

        Addendum to my last…

        Subject: NOT ALL ISRAEL IS OF ISRAEL.

        Jacob is ISRAEL. ESAU IS NOT. But both are the children of the PROMISE of the flesh, both are children of Abraham. But, who is COUNTED to inherit the PROMISES LAND? Esau was CUT OFF…and why? Not because he sold his birthright (cuz that was prophesied when it was said, the older will serve the younger). But it was because of WHO he married. A Jew is not a Jew thru the man, but thru the mother. ESAU was circumcized, but he was CUT OFF.

        He was CUT OFF cuz he married into the family of ISHMAEL.

        In Jewish custom, the family line is thru the woman, not the man, as it is with other nations. Esau’s children are NOT JEWS…all because of WHO he married. Yet, by family line, Abraham is great grandpa. But not according to the INHERITANCE. ESAU and his descenents does not inherit the PROMISES LAND.

        Ed Chapman

      286. TS00,

        You had said:
        “Does this appear to affirm that Israel stumbled because they were blinded by God? No, but because of their refusal to put their faith in Jesus instead of their precious Law. Who will not be put to shame? All Israel, after God ‘unblinds’ them? No, but only those who believe. As the earlier quote mentioned, it would be contradictory and silly of Paul to state both that ‘all [national] Israel will be saved’ and only ‘a remnant will be saved’.”

        My response:

        It’s interesting how you word that, using the words PRECIOUS LAW, as if that was sarcasm. WHO TOLD THEM TO OBEY THE LAW? WHO INSTITUTED THE LAW?

        God tells them to obey the law, KNOWING FULL AND WELL that they can’t keep the law in the first place, and Paul states that the law is NOT OF FAITH.

        Abraham didn’t have the law. We don’t have the law. BUT THEY DID, and it was God that told Moses to WRITE IT DOWN and instruct them. He surely didn’t give the law to Abraham.

        The law is not of faith, but of works, deeds, do. The law is EARNING your way, and God is showing that there is NO WAY TO EARN salvation, USING the Jews as PROPS to PROVE IT.

        You MISSED one very important verse in your comment of Romans 9-11 and that verse is:

        Romans 11:8
        8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.

        If you have an NIRV version, you will see the OT verse of Romans 11:8

        Romans 11:8 NIRV
        8 It is written,
        “God made it hard for them to understand.
        He gave them eyes that could not see.
        He gave them ears that could not hear.
        And they are still like that today.” (Deuteronomy 29:4; Isaiah 29:10)

        So let’s take that back to DEUTERONOMY 29:4 AND ISAIAH 29:10 using the NIRV version

        Deuteronomy 29:4
        But to this day the Lord hasn’t given you a mind that understands. He hasn’t given you eyes that see. He hasn’t given you ears that hear.

        TS00, they have been BLIND since the beginning (Moses wasn’t blind, tho). “TO THIS DAY means NEVER. Never has the Lord given them a mind that understands, or eyes that can see, or ears that can hear. Except a remnant, as Romans 9-11 shows.

        Isaiah 29:10
        10 The Lord has made you fall into a deep sleep.
        He has closed the eyes of your prophets.
        He has covered the heads of your seers so they can’t see.

        And, as Romans 11:8 shows…THEY ARE STILL BLIND..EXCEPT FOR A REMNANT…today.

        They can’t believe UNTIL God unblinds them. And he will, and he will give mercy to them, just as he states in Romans 11.

        Again, Paul got MERCY, and WHY?

        1 Timothy 1:13
        Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

        And since we KNOW that God is NOT A RESPECTER OF PERSONS, THEN THE BLIND JEWS ARE NO DIFFERENT THAN PAUL WAS.

        It would make NO SENSE for Paul to get MERCY (UNBLINDED BY GOD), and the Jews NOT to get the SAME mercy.

        Now, I’d like to hear you justify THAT, as how and why Paul gets mercy, but THEY DON’T? Enlighten me. Didn’t Jesus REVEAL himself to Paul? Hello? Jesus will REVEAL himself to the REST OF THE BLIND JEWS, TOO, just like Joseph revealed himself to his brothers, and showed all of his brothers mercy.

        Paul is no different than they are.

        Ed Chapman

      287. TS00 writes, “A helpful comment by Dave Vermeulen on another site reads:”

        This position is consistent with Calvinism and is opposed by Dr. Flowers and those who advocate a “corporate” Israel approach to Romans 9-11.

      288. I hope I have made it clear that I don’t belong in any box. I do not believe what some authority, be it creed, council or my favorite theologian, dictates, nor do my beliefs come in a precompiled package. I simply try to wrestle with scripture and remain open to the leading of the Spirit as he slowly chips away my ignorance, preconceptions, misconceptions, logical errors, etc. I discovered how embracing a ‘system’ essentially locks down your mind, disabling your ability to be corrected or led to greater understanding. I intend to not make that mistake again.

        I have no problem acknowledging that I share some belief with Calvinists, Catholics, Buddhists, atheists or anyone. Just don’t put me in a box and declare, ‘Ah you are obviously a _____________’ because I have some belief in common with them. I’m simply a sincere individual, doing my best to understand who God is and what he intends me to grasp in order to best serve him.

      289. From my perspective – labeling others is what Calvinists are taught to do.
        its pretty much impossible to stop them from doing it.

      290. I have never met anyone who thinks exactly like me, nor do I wish to. It would be too embarrassing when I had to admit that I no longer held such and such an opinion. I hope that never a year begins in which I think exactly as I did a year ago. I have no illusions that I will ever figure it all out and then be able to put my feet up and explain all of my marvelous wisdom to others. May God call me home before I stop learning.

      291. TS00,

        One last example…The word “HID”.

        Luke 9:43-45
        43 Jesus…said unto his disciples,

        44 Let these sayings sink down into your ears: for the Son of man shall be delivered into the hands of men.

        45 But they understood not this saying, and it was hid from them, that they perceived it not: and they feared to ask him of that saying.

        Also…

        Luke 18:31-34
        31 Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished.

        32 For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on:

        33 And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again.

        34 And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken.

        THEY HAD NO CLUE WHAT JESUS WAS TALKING ABOUT, AND IF YOU BELIEVE THAT JESUS IS GOD, THEN GOD IS TELLING THEM “Let this sink down into your ears”, but THEY COULDN’T understand because GOD HID IT FROM THEM.

        So, here is God telling them to understand, but God hid it from them so that they could NOT understand.

        But your claim is:

        “It would be silly of Jesus to say:”

        But here we got silly Jesus saying UNDERSTAND, knowing full and well that they can’t understand.

        Luke 19:39-42
        39 And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples.

        40 And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

        41 And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it,

        42 Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.

        Silly God.

        Ed Chapman

      292. Edward:
        ” I do NOT believe that ALL WHO COME TO CHRIST are gonna be seeing visions, speaking in tongues, etc.”

        Aidan:
        GOOD FOR YOU, NEITHER DO I.

        Edward:
        “Peter was quoting a prophesy that is EXCLUSIVE for the Jews only. Period.”

        Aidan:
        PROVE IT THEN, instead of just throwing in ASSERTIONS ALL OVER THE PLACE!

        Edward:
        “When YOU are ready to ENGAGE, by responding to MY ACTUAL PROVIDED VERSES, then we can talk.”

        Aidan:
        Yes, perhaps we can talk! When YOU are ready to ACTUALLY PROVE SOMETHING, based on an EXEGESIS of those texts you gave..

        Maybe when YOU decide to be SERIOUS ABOUT THE TRUTH, and to listen, WITHOUT MAKING ASSUMPTIONS, then hopefully we could have a PROPER TALK.

        I told you before, IT’S NOT UP TO ME TO PROVE, or DISPROVE, all your manifold assertions. I believe THAT’S YOUR JOB!

      293. Aidan,

        I have proven it. You are not listening. Peter quotes a prophesy, and that prophesy mentions a MOON, and THAT HASN’T HAPPENED YET. It doesn’t happen until the 6th Seal of Revelation.

        You neglect to FINISH Peter’s statement. He is telling them that in the LAST DAYS (sixth seal of Revelation) THAT THIS IS GONNA HAPPEN, AND THAT THEY ARE EXPERIENCING WHAT WILL ALSO HAPPEN IN THE DAYS OF THE 6TH SEAL when the MOON does something (I say does something because you think that I actually think that the moon will really turn into BLOOD).

        Peter was NOT TELLING THEM THAT THAT DAY WAS THE LAST DAYS. Neither does your Hebrews reference, either say anything about “THE” last days. It states, “THESE” LAST DAYS (MEANING, RECENT PAST).

        Speaking of RED BLOOD MOONS…

        There was a FIRE in my neck of the woods a couple years back, and TONS OF SMOKE FILLED THE AIR so much that you could not see a hundred feet in front of you, but the moon was out, and it was RED LIKE BLOOD, not orange, not white.

        If that gives a clue…

        Ed Chapman

      294. Aidan,

        And, once again, you have NOT addressed the verses that I provided. You are only addressing my comments, but not the verses themselves, which are provided to you do disprove your so-called TRUTH.

        Therefore, I have indeed NOT made any assumptions of anything. I’m quoting scripture, THEN I comment on the scripture provided, for which you call my comments assertions. I would point you BACK to the verses I provided first.

        Ed Chapman

      295. TS00,

        I want to commend you on your excellent approach to Romans 9-11. This is what I’m talking about. You are someone who is willing to look at a passage (in it’s context) and then give an actual interpretation of the Bible by drawing the meaning out of the Biblical text itself. But not only that, but also endeavoring to keep it in harmony with what the rest of scriptures teach – from plain and simple texts.

        Excellent approach; and I can’t fault anything you said there- thank you for being a breath of fresh air.

      296. Aiden,

        So, tell me about the BLIND JEWS, as to why Paul gets mercy, but the rest of the Blind Jews don’t?

        Paul, a Pharisee, was blind, just like they are. God revealed himself to him, when Paul asked, “Who are you LORD”.

        I am Jesus, responded LORD.

        And Paul got MERCY due to UNBELIEF AND IGNORANCE.

        WHY shouldn’t the rest of the Blind Jews get the same exact Mercy as the BLIND Paul did? Does God show favoritism?

        Ed Chapman

      297. TS00,

        I hope you don’t mind, but I phoned our preacher and read out your analysis of Romans 9-11; and he loved it. He too thought it was an excellent approach, so much so, that he asked me to print it out for him. Again, I hope you don’t mind – if so – please let me know and I will refrain from doing so.

      298. Aidan, I have no problem with you sharing what I wrote. If anyone finds my ‘thinking out loud’ in print helpful, then I am thankful. I don’t claim, by any means, to have a full understanding of all that scripture means. I simply try to grapple with what I see, make sense of what seems contradictory and remain open to input from others and the guidance of the Spirit in order to keep growing in understanding. That’s pretty much all I can do.

      299. TS00,

        YOU WROTE:

        “Aidan, I have no problem with you sharing what I wrote. If anyone finds my ‘thinking out loud’ in print helpful, then I am thankful. I don’t claim, by any means, to have a full understanding of all that scripture means. I simply try to grapple with what I see, make sense of what seems contradictory and remain open to input from others and the guidance of the Spirit in order to keep growing in understanding. That’s pretty much all I can do.”

        MY RESPONSE:

        Again, thank you for allowing me to share this, it’s an encouragement. And, neither do I, by any means, claim to have a full understanding of a lot of things found in the scriptures. Our preacher, who is 72, just told me today that he is still grappling and trying to learn all the time. And that, even what he might have known only last week, could change in understanding this week. I feel the same way, and believe that we must spend the rest of our lives seeking God’s help in order to keep growing in the knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord.

        And I believe that all you were simply saying, is that we can only be saved in Christ. That whether we be Jew or Gentile, God’s true spiritual Holy nation, the people of God, can only be found in Christ, in the Church that Jesus built. I know you said a lot more – but this is the basic truth as far as I can see it.

        Thanks very much, and I hope we can talk again.

        Aidan.

      300. TS00,

        In view of your encouraging and positive comments on Romans 9-11, is there another site, or a way I could contact you by email and talk to you more privately about this subject? I believe it would be a great encouragement to the both of us, but if you have any reservations — I will certainly respect them.

        Thanks,
        Aidan.

      301. Aidan, if you would like to send a message to a moderator (Brian Wagner), you could ask him to forward your email to me.

      302. TS00,

        Thanks for your reply and acceptance of my offer.
        I will send Brian a message straight away.

      303. Hello, Brian Wagner,

        Sorry to have to use your full name like that. I hope all is well with you. I was wondering if you could forward my email address to TS00?

        Thanks,
        Aidan.

      304. Thank you Brian,..Yes, all is well. I was away at the weekend in Wexford for a bit of a break. Won’t be long before the weather takes a turn for the worse. In the meantime — we are still getting our fair share of American visitors to these green tiny shores.

  10. I also appreciate this blog and Leighton’s continued work to challenge ages old concepts that have been passed down for generations, yet have little solid biblical support. Total Depravity/Inability is one of these concepts, which not only renders so much of scripture senseless, but also presents a picture of God that is far from the gracious, loving Father who longs to redeem all men from sin and destruction.

    What a travesty to assert that this loving God would actually do something so heinous as deliberately cut off mankind’s ability to desire and seek a restored relationship with him. Could there be anything more deliberately cruel and destructive? I think not, thus, I totally reject this man-made, philosophically created concept.

    1. This false assertion, that God deliberately cursed, separated and blinded all men, setting them on a course of destruction is what has led so many to reject the call of God. It is far past time we rescued God from this heinous caricature and once again declare the true gospel of love, grace and peace proclaimed by angels and demonstrated by Jesus.

      1. TSOO: This false assertion, that God deliberately cursed, separated and blinded all men, setting them on a course of destruction is what has led so many to reject the call of God. It is far past time we rescued God from this heinous caricature and once again declare the true gospel of love, grace and peace proclaimed by angels and demonstrated by Jesus.

        GA: This is so true… It is totally amazing how a systematic can Consistently: Profane the Holy name of God, Twist and Disfigure God’s Genuine Love for His Creation, Undermine the Fact that God is Truth All the Time….and at the end of the day we still think it is not worthy of Calling it what it really is…Here is what A.W.Tozer said: “When adherents come to believe that God is different from what He actually is; that is heresy of the most insidious and deadly kind.”

        I ask you does Calvinism not rise to that level? To assault the very character of GOD seems to me to be the Worst form of false teaching possible. Just my opinion.

  11. rhutchin
    The article above completely ignores Ephesians 2 and says, “Provisionist/Traditionalists, like myself, maintain that……

    br,d
    One can see from Dr. Abasciano’s wording in this particular article – that he is not going into the historical/contextual/grammatical exegesis of the Greek in this article. So that was never the intent here – even though Dr. Abasciano has a well established reputation in that arena.

    In his textual analysis Dr, Abasciano is often sited has exhibiting an excruciating attention to detail.
    Suffice to say – this article would probably have expanded to 10 pages if he had gone in that direction.

  12. From Got Questions….

    “In this position (the Wesleyan-Arminian), because of the first coming and atoning work of Christ, God has dispensed a universal prevenient grace that fully negates the depravity of man. Thus, man is now in a neutral state. Those who adhere to this position assert that because of Christ’s promises that speak of ‘all men’ being drawn and the ‘world’ being convicted after His sacrifice, it means that the prevenient grace we experience today was something purchased by Christ’s work on the cross.”

    Now compare that with the following…

    Calvinist John Hendryx writes… “In fact, all the benefits of our salvation can be traced back to Christ and His finished work on the cross. Regeneration, one of these redemptive benefits, is granted to those God has set His affection on before creation, that they may appropriate those blessings at His appointed and accepted time.”

    Both are claiming that regenerating grace/prevenient grace are a result of Christ’s finished works on the cross.

    If so, then how did those before the cross (from Adam to the thief) believe? No blood had yet been spilt. Up to this point, the penalty for sin (past, present, or future) had not yet been paid. How did the atoning work of the cross neglect the effects of the fall for those prior to the cross?

    Yet, now, we have the Pied Piper saying the following…

    “And when you believe as you ought to believe, you will discover that your belief—like all other spiritual blessings—was purchased by the death of Christ. The sin of unbelief was covered by the blood in your case, and therefore the power of God’s mercy was released through the cross to subdue your rebellion and bring you to the Son. You did not make the cross effective in your life by faith. The cross became effective in your life by purchasing your faith.”

    Again, if the cross is what “subdued our rebellion” and covered the sin of unbelief, then just how did those prior to the cross (again, from Adam to the thief) believe?

    So, if regenerating grace/prevenient grace are a result of the work of the cross, then everyone is at least partially redeemed prior to saving faith.

    That, my brothers and sisters, is completely unbiblical. I just wish our Calvinist/Arminian brothers would challenge their own beliefs with the same tenacity they do with the others.

  13. The below is written by Roger Olson….

    “Several times here I have been criticized by Calvinists for talking about a ‘partial regeneration’ brought about by the Holy Spirit in what Arminians call ‘prevenient grace’. They have demanded that I show them this ‘partial regeneration’ in the Bible. My answer has always been that it is everywhere assumed and implied in the Bible.

    Recently I’ve been reading John Owen’s book ‘The Holy Spirit’. Owen was, of course, the leading Puritan theologian of the 17th century. Most of his books are still in print and widely read and studied by Calvinists.

    Imagine my surprise and delight in coming across this passage in Chapter 16 ‘Believers Only Are Sanctified’:

    “Those under such conviction of sin have sometimes actually had the seeds of regeneration imparted to them already. [He clearly means BEFORE full regeneration occurs.] Then they will indeed continue to pray for the works of regeneration to be properly done in them.” (The Holy Spirit [Puritan Paperbacks edition, 1998], p. 118)

    So, to my Calvinist critics–if you think ‘partial regeneration’ is an unbiblical belief consider why your hero John Owen believed in it!

    Yes, of course, there’s a difference between Owen’s belief about it and Arminians’ belief. For him it is irresistible; for us it is resistible. But that’s not to the point. The point is a simple and straightforward one: Owen, like Arminians, believed in what can properly be called a ‘partial regeneration’ that precedes full regeneration.”

    Brothers/Sisters,

    And, again, just how is “partial regeneration” resistible? Its not. All men are at least “partially regenerated” without the sinner’s consent. How is that not irresistible? What the partially regenerated sinner is resisting is the gospel of Jesus Christ and, thus, according to Olson, experiencing full regeneration.

    Partial regeneration. Partial redemption. You can’t make this stuff up folks. But both our Calvinist/Arminian brothers had to in order to find a solution for their own notion of TD/TI.

    This is why I maintain that Arminianism is just Calvinism Lite.

    1. Great post Phillip — As has been stated many times on this site — A man-made problem requires a man-made solution. Neither of which are Biblical. Total Depravity defined as total inability leads to many other false teachings.

      “This is why I maintain that Arminianism is just Calvinism Lite.” I agree… Good stuff

      Someone earlier posted that Arminius wanted to be accepted by the Politically powerful Calvinists of his day. I find that in this day and age few people, even if they have misgivings about Calvinism, are willing to stand up and be counted because of the “political/religious establishment” power they now have in many circles. You will be sidelined and slandered. We must be willing to stand for truth no matter the cost and it will cost us, it has already cost many of us in many ways. Calvinism is not a meek and mild version of Christianity.

      1. GraceAdict writes, “Total Depravity defined as total inability leads to many other false teachings.”

        Romans 10 – “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

        Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.

        John 6 ; ““No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him;”

        Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to God’s drawing and why this is a false teaching.

      2. rhutchin
        Romans 10 – “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

        Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.

        br.d
        First provide the scripture which *EXPLICITLY* states that humans do not have whatever measure of faith is divinely expected of them.

        rhutchin
        John 6 ; ““No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him;”

        Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to God’s drawing and why this is a false teaching.

        br.d
        First provide the scripture which *EXPLICITLY* states that divine drawing is arbitrarily limited to a select few.

      3. br.d writes, ‘First provide the scripture which *EXPLICITLY* states…”

        Even br.d shows that he cannot respond to the question, “Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.” Perhaps, someone could help him.

        His question is answered by Rpmans 10. ““faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God..” Surely, even br.d knows the importance of faith and God’s drawing in the salvation process. Then again, maybe not!.

      4. br.d
        First provide the scripture which *EXPLICITLY* states that humans do not have whatever measure of faith is divinely expected of them.

        rhutchin
        Even br.d shows that he cannot respond to the question, “Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.” Perhaps, someone could help him.

        br.d
        The question PRESUPPOSES FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTIONS which must be addressed first.
        And please – no verses like: “And Irad begat Mehujae” :-]

        rhutchin
        His question is answered by Rpmans 10. ““faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God..” Surely, even br.d knows the importance of faith and God’s drawing in the salvation process. Then again, maybe not!.

        br.d
        But this doesn’t address the PRESUPPOSED FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTION does it?

        First provide the scripture which *EXPLICITLY* states that divine drawing is arbitrarily limited to a select few.
        And please – no verses like “And Irad begat Mehujae” :-]

      5. Do you mean John 12:32: “and I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”? Or maybe James 4:8: “Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you men of double mind.”

        One could point to the latter and assert that man must first draw near to God. Because single verses, applied out of context to all situations, are ripe for misinterpretation. Funny how fallacious one’s interpretations of a word or concept can become simply by ignoring inconvenient verses and teachings. The crucifixion (lifting up) was the act of drawing all men to the forgiveness and life offered by God. Faith, or lack thereof, is man’s response to God’s offer.

        James is pointing to the fact that God’s drawing card has been played. Now it is up to man to either respond by drawing near to God and turning from sin, or by resisting and clinging to unrighteous rebellion. It is indeed, at this point, up to the individual to respond in faith to what was promised and accomplished in and through Jesus.

      6. yes and all of the proof-text verses that Calvinists use to affirm their doctrines concerning salvation.

        All of these verses are an UNCERTAIN SOUND to the Calvinist – who doesn’t know whether they apply to himself or not.

        Jesus says “Let your communication be YEA YEA or NAY NAY.
        But Calvin’s god communicates YEA/NAY concerning his will for the creatures he creates.

        This should be a RED-FLAG that something is wrong with Calvinist interpretations of scripture.

      7. br.d writes, “The question PRESUPPOSES FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTIONS which must be addressed first.”

        Here, br.d invents ‘PRESUPPOSES FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTIONS” in order to avoid responding. br.d continues to show us that he cannot respond to the question, “Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.” Perhaps, someone could help him.

      8. br.d writes, “The question PRESUPPOSES FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTIONS which must be addressed first.”

        rhutchin
        Here, br.d invents ‘PRESUPPOSES FALLACIOUS ASSUMPTIONS” in order to avoid responding. br.d continues to show us that he cannot respond to the question, “Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.” Perhaps, someone could help him.

        br.d
        This is another good example of FALSE ATTRIBUTION – the Calvinist attributes his own condition to another. :-]

        Why don’t you try and provide the scriptures as requested?
        And please – no verses like: “And Irad begat Mehujae” :-]

      9. Rh writes:
        “Explain to us how anyone has any ability prior to faith and why this is a false teaching.” Perhaps, someone could help him.”

        You mean like the lengthy responses JR has so carefully set forth, explaining why all have the ability to show faith, and why it is not a commodity one must await receipt of?

        Many ‘someones’ have repeatedly provided the evidence you repeatedly demand. I propose we begin to answer these pretentious demands thusly. ‘No one can explain’ we hear over and over, no matter how many careful, logical, well-crafted explanations have been set forth. The rhutchin-go-round never stops.

  14. The Calvinist: “Man is dead. Dead as a corpse dead. Dead. Dead. Dead.”

    The Arminian: “Well, man isn’t as dead as a corpse, but he’s dead enough. We’ll just say man is dead-ish.”

    The Calvinist: “A dead man must be given life before he can believe. That’s why we preach ‘regeneration precedes faith’.”

    The Arminian: “A dead-ish man must be given partial life before he can believe. That’s why we preach ‘partial regeneration precedes faith’.”

    The Calvinist: “This regenerating grace is irresistible.”

    The Arminian: “This partial regeneration grace is resistible, although everyone is successfully partially regenerated so go figure.”

    The Calvinist: “That’s why we affirm the TULIP.”

    The Arminian: “That’s why we affirm the TCUIP or something like that.”

    Maybe our Arminian brothers are just “partial” Calvinists.

    1. Phillip
      Maybe our Arminian brothers are just “partial” Calvinists.

      br.d
      You wouldn’t be the first to come to that conclusion.

      However even I do find it unfortunate that Arminius brooded over defending himself from the charge of deviating from Calvin, I do think he made some good contributions.

      Arminius identified the LOGICAL distinction between the necessity of the consequence and the necessity of the consequent.

      As explained by Keith D. Stanglin and Thomas H. McCall in their book “Jacob Arminius: Theologian of Grace”

      -quote
      “The necessity of the consequence is captured by such statements as:
      Necessarily, if God knows that Tom is eating an apple, then Tom is eating an apple.

      The necessity of the consequent can be seen in such statements as:
      If God knows that Torn is eating an apple, then, necessarily, Tom is eating an apple.

      The necessity of the consequent is required for determinism.
      While the necessity of the consequence is all that is required for foreknowledge.

      But the necessity of the consequent is not entailed by the necessity of the consequence; thus it is possible to have foreknowledge without determinism. With this distinction, Arminius affirms foreknowledge but rejects determinism.”

      1. br.d citing someone, “The necessity of the consequence is captured by such statements as:
        Necessarily, if God knows that Tom is eating an apple, then Tom is eating an apple.
        The necessity of the consequent can be seen in such statements as:
        If God knows that Torn is eating an apple, then, necessarily, Tom is eating an apple.

        Since we are dealing with “foreknowledge” let’s use an example of future action.

        “The necessity of the consequence is captured by such statements as:
        Necessarily, if God knows that Tom will be eating an apple at time t, then Tom will be eating an apple at time t.
        (If God knows that Tom will be eating an apple at time t, it logically follows that Tom will be eating an apple at time t.)

        The necessity of the consequent can be seen in such statements as:
        If God knows that Torn will be eating an apple at time t, then, necessarily, Tom will be eating an apple at time t.
        (If God knows that Torn will be eating an apple at time t, then it is logically necessary that Tom will be eating an apple.at time t )

        When the authors say, “With this distinction, Arminius affirms foreknowledge but rejects determinism.” This means that the Arminian does not drill down to discover how God knows. The Calvinist does drill down and discovers that God knows because He ordains. The Arminian just chooses to be ignorant of how God knows. So what. In either case, the future plays out exactly as God knows it will. The only way to avoid that outcome is to say that God is not omniscient and does not foreknow all things. Of course, that would be a drag on His understanding of all things.

      2. rhutchin
        When the authors say, “With this distinction, Arminius affirms foreknowledge but rejects determinism.”

        br.d
        You’ve almost got it – but you missed the LOGICAL deduction in the statement that showed that to be the case

        -quote:
        The necessity of the consequent is required for determinism.
        While the necessity of the consequence is all that is required for foreknowledge.

        But the necessity of the consequent is not entailed by the necessity of the consequence; thus it is possible to have foreknowledge without determinism. With this distinction, Arminius affirms foreknowledge but rejects determinism.”

        rhutchin
        This means that the Arminian does not drill down to discover how God knows.

        br.d
        Here we have the FALLACY of Non Sequitur

        Definition:
        The conclusion does not LOGICALLY follow from the premise. A “jump to conclusion” process, void of evidence to support the jump.

        rhutchin
        The Calvinist does drill down and discovers that God knows because He ordains.

        br.d
        Right – Calvin’s god knows he will not PERMIT Adam to obey – and will not make obedience available to Adam – because Calvin’s god knows that he RENDERED-CERTAIN only one physically possible future for Adam – disobedience.

        As Peter Van Inwagen confirms:
        Determinism can now be defined – it is the thesis that for every future event – there is only one physically possible future.

        rhutchin
        The Arminian just chooses to be ignorant of how God knows.

        br.d
        And you say I make bold claims! What a hoot!
        In order to show this to be the case you will have to provide evidence that EVERY Arminian does as you claim they do.

        rhutchin
        So what. In either case, the future plays out exactly as God knows it will.

        br.d
        Firstly – that was already established – and with the conclusion being: quote: “The necessity of the consequence is all that is required for foreknowledge.” which has been stated – allows Arminius to have a robust understanding of Foreknowledge – without determinism.

        rhutchin
        The only way to avoid that outcome is to say that God is not omniscient and does not foreknow all things.

        br.d
        Only if one accepts a FALSE PROPOSITION – that foreknowledge = foreordination

        And you’ve also missed the option of middle-knowledge – which is another way a perfect being can have perfect foreknowledge while establishing Libertarian Free world. Again – no determinism.

        rhutchin
        Of course, that would be a drag on His understanding of all things.

        br.d
        I can see that it would be a drag for the Calvinist to not know whether or not he has been designed for eternal torment in a lake of fire – for Calvin’s god’s pleasure.

        And it would be a drag to not know whether or not any of the promises of God in scripture apply to himself or not.

        And knowing that Calvin’s god mostly