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Discussion in 'Salvation (Soteriology)' started by Hammster, Apr 8, 2014.

  1. abacabb3

    abacabb3 Newbie

    Ill answer more carefully but my shoulder is killing me. Will return.
  2. abacabb3

    abacabb3 Newbie

    Actually, I think the latter part of Romans 10 is talking about Israelites. In verse 18 Paul asks, "Did they not hear?" From the context, "they" is clearly ethnic Israel, don't you think?

    Paul's argument is akin to Rom 1, but he is speaking purely about Israel. The Old Testament makes clear, in what Paul is quoting, that all of Israel has had the opportunity to repent and God has waited patiently for them. Now, GOd in His sovereignty moves onto bringing in gentiles to make Israel "envious." This is all by the sovereign moving of God in history. This is why Paul says in verse 1 of Chap 11, "I ask then, [in light of Chap 10], did God reject His people."

    So, I repeat what I said before. If we read the latter part of Chapter 10 as a rehash of the latter part of chapter 1, I think we are missing Paul's point entirely: The people of Israel are being hardened (Chap 9). They are without excuse because God has already made the faith avilable to them since the days of Moses and they have rejected it (Chap 10), but God is doing this hardening as part of His plan to bring in the full fold of His elect (Chap 11).

    I actually don't think that interpretation makes the most sense given the context of the whole conversation that Paul has. I can be wrong, but I view verses 12 through 16 an aside, if not a commentary on the conclusions we can draw about verse 9 through 11. However, though all of us gentiles love Romans 10:9, Paul is speaking about it within the context of what Moses was talking about in the Book of Deuteronomy. The way Israelites were saved then is the same all men are saved now, by faith in God. And unlike the Gentiles who still need to be preached to about God so that they may call on Him, the Israelites have all heard about God, all the ISraelites to the four corners of the world.

    This goes beyond my understanding of foreign languages so I cannot intelligently pass comment.

    I would have to disagree with Calvin, as he is probably ignoring the whole context of the conversation (the hardening of Israel) and focusing just on the Gentiles. But, I have not read his commentary on chapters 9 and 11, so I can be wrong.

    In this Calvin would be wrong, simply because it is just conjecture on his part while in the Scripture, no one comes to Christ apart from preaching or seeing Him. So, what Paul writes when taken at face value, as Calvin realizes, would mean that indeed men only hear by preaching. I don't want to make presumptions as to why Calvin theologically finds such an idea dangerous, but I think there is no contradiction in there being a totally sovereign God and yet He uses preaching as the means to turn hearts of flesh into stone. For what it is worth, this is how the early monergists such as Augustine and Propser of Aquataine would have viewed the situation. In fact, Prosper of Aqutaine is quite explicit about that. So, while great minds can disagree, my feeble mind disagrees with Calvin on this one.
  3. hedrick

    hedrick Senior Veteran Supporter

    You're assuming that Calvin's exegesis is based on his theology. But he is an exegete before he's a theologian. Nobody is perfect, but he does his best not to let his theology bias his exegesis. He's reflecting the logic of Paul's argument.

    Calvin is considered to be exclusivist, but a quick search on the Institutes doesn't really resolve the implications of this exegesis. He believes faith is necessary, but faith for him is our internal reception of Christ. My reading of his discussion of faith is that (whether he used them or not) it does have some loopholes. His definition of faith bases it on sure knowledge, but in fact he makes exceptions both for infants and for members of the old covenant, both of which receive Christ but not very explicitly.
  4. abacabb3

    abacabb3 Newbie

    I reread Rom 9 ro 11 this morning and I have to say, I am sticking to my guns.

    Rom 10:1-13 establishes that for all time, the Jews were saved like how the gentiles are now being saved. THrough the Law they see they need grace (verse 5) and they are saved by calling upon God when in need of that grace.

    Verse 11 brings gentiles into the conversation. In verse 14 the reference to "they" is to the gentiles. I have two reasons for this. First, verse 13 says "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." So, everyone includes both Jews and Gentiles. Second, verse 16 says, "Not all the Israelites accepted the good news" and then verse 18 addresses that all of the Israelites are without excuse because the Scripture attests they have been preached to. Paul is creating a contrast, one that he invokes in chapters 9 and 11. How one group the gentiles are being brought in while the other group, the Israelites, are being hardened so all of Israel will be saved.

    Meanwhile, I think verses 14 and 15, if about the gentiles, clearly answer the questions already asked, revealing what our exegesis should be:

    How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in?
    They can't. Notice how the next sentence blatantly assumes that they can't:

    And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?
    The "and how can they" presumes, well because they can't, how could they if no one told them? So Paul answers how they can call on the one they have not believed: by hearing. Now, this ahs to do with gentiles. Jews supposedly can call on God because Jews by default have heard about Him, they know who God is, they aren't pagan.

    And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?
    Again, Paul's rhetorical questions presume obvious answers. The people who can't call on GOd have not heard about God, and this is because they have not been preached to.

    And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
    Lastly, Paul justifies missionary activity from invoking the Old Testament, essentially saying that no one hears unless someone goes out to preach.

    To me, to read verses 14 or 15 any other way just cannot make sense. Paul is clearly differentiating between Jews and Gentiles, and he clearly presumes answers within verse 14 and 15. How can he ask 4 different questions in which the subsequent question is dependent upon the assumed answer in the preceding question, but by your exegesis, each presumed answer would be incorrect in light of verse 18?

    Quite frankly, I believe whether it is you, Calvin, or anyone else, you would have to be wrong. Paul isn't asking rhetorical questions, each dependent upon the presumed answer of the preceding question, only to say in verse 18 everything you can gather from verses 14 and 15 are not true and they essentially are meaningless. Verse 18 talks about Jews, verses 14 to 15 talk about gentiles. This exegesis preserves the meanings of both sections of the Scripture without contradiction while your exegesis, that verse 18 answers verse 14 and 15, render verse 14 and 15 contradictory and confusing.

    THere are other theologians that would agree with me, so I see no need to appeal to authority to solve this dispute. The question is which exegesis makes most sense with the Scripture at hand. To me, to argue that verse 14 and 15 don't say what they clearly say is to make the covnersation therein much more confusing and senseless then it really is.
  5. sdowney717

    sdowney717 Newbie

    The testimony from God of man is that the thought's of man's heart is only evil continuously from his youth.
    God's mark is on all created things as witness to His power, His glory shown in the things He has made, so instead then by design of God rather than a prodding from God to do or be good, to believe, these things men deny showing themselves as what they by nature are, deniers of God and creation who prefer darkness to light, so they are then without excuse. And if they have no excuse, and therefore evil natured, they must be wholly dependent on the mercy of God for their being saved from His wrath because there are none that do good, none that seek God, even thought the creation around them is testimony to Himself that He exists and made all things.

    Also, it is not just hearing preaching that saves.
    The Word itself gives testimony of God's ways and saves us.
    When we read God's word, God is speaking to us.

    For example John 17 v31
  6. abacabb3

    abacabb3 Newbie

    No one disagrees that reading the salvation can convert a heart, but the issue is whether anyone can be saved apart from hearing about "the word of Christ" at all.
  7. sdowney717

    sdowney717 Newbie

    They can not.
    Even the wilderness wanderers, Israel, some it says 'tempted Christ' and were destroyed by fiery serpents. (1 Cor 10)

    Jesus said 'apart from Me you can do nothing'

    A 'divine spark' exists for men that He will save, before they know Him, being that He foreknows them, He being the Potter that makes us the clay. All things God works for their good, those He has predestined to know Him. We are His workmanship.
  8. seeingeyes

    seeingeyes Newbie

    Is there some reason to think that these two groups were separated for reasons other than what Jesus said they were? The"sheep and goats" thing is a simile describing the separation, the reasons are given in the verses that come after (namely "you fed me" "you didn't feed me").

    But at any rate, the "sheep" were surprised to find that they were following Jesus and the "goats" were surprised that they weren't.