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Preservation of the elect

Discussion in 'LCMS / WELS / ELS / LCC' started by Ann77, Jul 10, 2020.

  1. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    In Lutheranism, does God only offer preservation to the elect and not everyone who comes to Him? Does my question make sense? I was searching info on John 6:37 and I found someone saying "We hold to the preservation of the elect, not to all who ever got saved." So is there like a caste system in Lutheranism? Sorry if that sounds like a negative spin, that's what his answer seemed to imply to me.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
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  2. Tolworth John

    Tolworth John Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't know what the Lutheran church teaches or why that view should be important.
    Romans 8:28-30 is clear that it is God who determine who will be saved.
    It doesn't matter whether one quibbles about the words foreknew and predestined it boils down to it being God's choice.
     
  3. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    Yes. I'm not becoming a Lutheran, I only find some of their views compelling. The way they preach the gospel and make a distinction of the law, offers a lot of hope to those with assurance issues like myself. The offer of the Gospel truly being for all makes me think I can be saved and not question my election. Reformed theology made me become very introspective and hopeless.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
  4. Aspzan

    Aspzan Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm not Reformed but I have been looking at the theology, if I can ask, why does it make you feel hopeless?
     
  5. rwb

    rwb Member

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    You need not feel hopeless Ann. Reformed Theology gives great comfort and assurance because we no longer dwell on whether or not we are good enough through our own efforts. Because our hope and confidence is fixed on Christ, Who is Good, and has done what we could not do for ourselves. And we have His promise "that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Php 1:6).

    You rightly speak of the Gospel as that which is offered unto all the world. So many people believe salvation is offered through the Gospel. But where do we find eternal life ever being offered by Christ? Salvation is GIVEN through the Gospel (message about Christ) offered unto all the earth. And through the Gospel, preached in the power of the Spirit, whosoever is ordained to eternal life will believe And by grace through faith be saved, not of their own works, but by the power of God. So rather than be consumed about who are of the elect and predestined for eternal life, simply accept that whosoever believes and enter into the Kingdom of Heaven by grace through faith are indeed elect and predestined to life everlasting. If one thinks themselves among the elect, predestined to eternal life, should fall away, then the question must be ask, were they really among the elect and predestined to eternal life in the first place?

    1 John 2:19 (KJV) They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.
     
  6. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    The Reformed interpretation of John 3:16, some view few are elect, the interpretation of Ezekiel 18:32 within high Calvinism, and the constant preaching of Roman's 9 made feel unsure of my election. That's not to say because of my experience, the doctrines are false. I'm just a very introspective person.
     
  7. J_B_

    J_B_ Member

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    You're in a Lutheran forum.
     
  8. J_B_

    J_B_ Member

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    Lutherans believe it is possible to fall away. There is no irresistible anything in Lutheranism, grace or otherwise. Neither is there some sort of formula where you can plug in X and it spits out who is preserved and who isn't. Yes, God provides all kinds of gifts - preservation and protection among them.

    But it simply doesn't matter who he decides to give those gifts to. Just rest assured God wants you to be saved, wants to bless you, and he will do everything that can be done for you.
     
  9. Phoebe Ann

    Phoebe Ann ...yet not I, but the grace of God that is with me Supporter

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    There are many churches claiming to be "reformed theology." The gospel is for those who will believe. Man can only believe if God gives him living faith.

    Does God owe us salvation because we chose Him or are we saved because we made the right choice?


    Christian a new heart and a new spirit.jpg
    Christian As many as were ordained to eternal life believe.jpg

    Philippians 2:13
    For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
  10. Aspzan

    Aspzan Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'll have to look into the Calvinist interpretation of those verses. I hope you can get assurance.
     
  11. Tolworth John

    Tolworth John Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I haven't quoted reformed theology only the Bible.
    As far as I am aware Jesus teaches that it is he who holds on to your or my faith, not us holding on to him.
     
  12. tampasteve

    tampasteve ✞Steadfast Lutheran, Messianic leaning ✡ Staff Member Administrator CF Senior Ambassador Angels Team Supporter

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    Because this is the Lutheran forum, and the question is being asked of Lutheran's.
     
  13. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    My background is Reformed. What you said is also a Reformed view. Sorry if you don't like labels or reject The Tulip and Doctrines of Grace. For me, I don't mind labels as long as the teachings in them are accurate.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
  14. tampasteve

    tampasteve ✞Steadfast Lutheran, Messianic leaning ✡ Staff Member Administrator CF Senior Ambassador Angels Team Supporter

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    I think this will help:
    Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod - Christian Cyclopedia
    Scripture teaches that God's elect saints will not be lost, but obtain everlasting salvation (Mt 24:22–24; Ro 8:28–39; 1 Co 1:8–9; 10:13). This does not mean that the elect saints cannot fall from grace and so temporarily lose their faith (David; Peter); but it does mean that God's saving grace, without any merit on their part, will restore them to the state of faith, so that in Christ they finally die a blessed death. The doctrine of final perseverance of the saints is pure Gospel, designed to comfort anxious and doubting believers; it should not be misused in the interest of carnal security. Those inclined to fleshly security and sinning against grace should be warned by such earnest Law preaching as is found Ro 11:20; 1 Co 10:12. The doctrine of final perseverance glorifies divine grace, not human merit. The Ref. doctrine that the elect saints, once called, may lose the exercise of faith, but not faith itself, even if they commit enormous sins, is opposed to Scripture.
     
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  15. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    Thanks for your answer.

    But if He doesn't offer the gift of preservation to all those who come, would this be creating a class of elect and non elect if God doesn't offer these gifts to all who come? I know you guys don't believe in (or at least silent on) supralapsarianism and infralapsarianism.
     
  16. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    Today is the first time I've heard of preservation.
    Here's my understanding of the difference of Preservation vs Perseverance. Preservation focuses more on God's promises while Perseverance focuses more on the fruit of someone saved.

    Is my takeaway correct?
     
  17. J_B_

    J_B_ Member

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    This is still a Reformed mindset. God offers everyone everything they need. That doesn't mean he offers everyone the same thing, nor does he promise it will be easy.
     
  18. Ann77

    Ann77 Member

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    Yeah. I am Reformed :D I'm still having a little difficulty understanding this whole thing.
     
  19. J_B_

    J_B_ Member

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    I was only in a United Methodist church until I was 12. Even then it took me a good 20 years to shake Reformed thinking and understand Confessional Lutheranism. I think part of the reason is that American Christianity is dominated by Reformed theology, so it's hard to get away from it.

    Keep asking questions. You'll get there.
     
  20. twin.spin

    twin.spin Trust the LORD and not on your own understanding

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    The predestination answer is best answered when Scripture is allowed to speak for itself.
    Reformed theology interjects human reasoning with it's double predestination.
    1. Because God predestines the elect for salvation
    2. therefore human reason insists that God predestines others not

    Scripture only speaks of predestination pertaining only to the believer:

    Romans 8:29-30
    For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

    And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.


    Ephesians 1:5
    he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—

    Ephesians 1:11
    In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,

    Again the Godly mindset to answer such questions is to focus on oneself: "Why me instead of why not them."
     
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