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U/C Unconditional election vs. Conditional election

Discussion in 'Salvation (Soteriology)' started by Blackhawk, Apr 11, 2002.

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  1. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    Dear SlaveNoMore,

    1)Love the Lord.
    2)In your life, shine His love to others.
    3)Walk in the Spirit

    I sure agree with you here.

    But let me tell you what I have found out in my years on this topic. When my opponents, or my debatring partners [since we are brothers not enemies] stop answering my questions, their next step is to stop debating.

    It seems to me that rather than truly examine my questions they would rather stop before their doctrinal theories are toppled. Now I said that this SEEMS this way to me. Since it gets to the same point every time before y'all stop. This point is where I point out to them their boasting on themselves instead of the Lord.

    Now I can hear one of them now saying in effect, 'But I don't boast on the Lord, I just recieve what He has done for me.' As if they did it without a good reason, a reason that those who don't do it either don't have, or don't find good enough. BUT that is the whole point that y'all wish not to address.

    IF they don't have the same reason you do then why not?
    IF they do have the same reason you do, what is wrong with them [and conversly right with you] that they wouldn't make the same proper choice as you did?

    But alas, these questions y'all would seem to just ignore than admit that God alone is your savior and He has saved you and not them. You would rather say the reason you are saved is that YOU chose God which by your own words as well implies that they didn't choose God and that therefore the difference between heaven and hell is in the one choosing, and NOT in the Cross of Christ. [Since Jesus did as much for you on the cross as He did for them -RiGHT?] So obviously the difference between heaven and hell is NOT God, and NOT the Cross but then it is the person choosing.

    So then why will you be in heaven is answered by you by saying you made the right choice while the others made the wrong choice. But there is your boast and it is NOT in the cross but in you and your choosing ability.

    So go on and stop SlaveNoMore, but remember your boast is in you and not the Lord and that is wrong.
  2. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    I am sorry if I have offended you. I just believe strongly in what I say.
  3. Slave2SinNoMore

    Slave2SinNoMore Active Member

    Say what you want, mjwhite, but I answered your questions. Your refusal to let a pointless argument go without having to say "Ah, you quit because you know I've won" does not surprise me. I did not quit because you somehow "had me". I quit because I'm tired of it all, and there are better things to do than continue to argue a point that is leading nowhere, in which we're all just repeating the same things over and over and over again.

    If I'm a boaster in your eyes, so be it, for my mediator is Jesus Christ, and there is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
  4. MizDoulos

    MizDoulos <font color=6c2dc7><b>Justified by grace through f

    Please Note: Before this discussion deteriorates any further, the thread has been locked for a few days until cooler heads prevail. A review of the forum rules would be helpful at this time.

    Thank you.
  5. MizDoulos

    MizDoulos <font color=6c2dc7><b>Justified by grace through f

    The thread will now be reopened in the hopes that everyone will respect each other's opinions and treat one another with kindness.

    Thank you for your cooperation.
  6. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    Dear Readers of this thread,

    This thread was shut down for a few days to let things cool down. While I understand their reasoning and in no way dispute their prerogative, I wish to inform them and all of you that I was in no way upset or angry. Not that I expect them to know that and I do understand that they have responsibilities to the owners, to others to themselves and to God. So I am not disputing what they did in the least.

    But I want to set my case before you [and them] because the very words I used which I believe they thought inflammatory [and they probably are] are not said with malice, anger, or hate. They are the very same words I will soon use to you my anonymous reader. They are not intended to be personal except that when I am debating an individual they can not be anything else but personal. So I am writing to everybody in general and nobody in particular. If you choose to debate with me, I will ask you very personal questions and I will try to get you to answer me.

    The reason for this is because I am discussing the born-again experience that we all as Christians have experienced in one form or the other. And though it is general in that way, it is very individualistic in that we go through it without other humans directly involved. What I mean by this is that no other human can be sure what we are experiencing except by our testimony to them. They have to rely on the witness of our words and actions. So I can not ask you what someone else experienced without it being second hand knowledge, hearsay so to speak. But I will ask you what you think others experience when they encounter God, so as to compare it to your own experience.

    Now you may ask what this has to do with the topic of the elect and how they are chosen. It does and I will explain. There are basically three types of Christian thought on the atonement. One school is called the Universalists. They believed Jesus died for all and in the end all will be in heaven, everybody, hell being empty except for Satan and the demons. Another school is called Calvinism or limited atonement, which basically believes that Jesus atoned only for those who get saved, that God elected only these for heaven, the rest He left to pay for their own sins. The third major school is the Arminianist or unlimited atonement, which believe like the Universalists that Christ died for all, but that only some will go to heaven based on whether they had faith in Jesus or not which is shown by their acceptance of the Gospel or their receiving of it. This is like the Calvinists, except that the Calvinists say only the elect will accept the gospel while the Arminianists say those who accept the gospel then become the elect.

    Now there are variations of each theme, with some leaning one way and some leaning the other, but that is the basic gist of things. Now I have never had a chance to speak with an Universalist; and if one wants to speak on this topic, I will be glad to listen to their reasoning. I am a Calvinist in that I believe that Jesus died for those He saves and none other. So those debating me have all been from one form of Arminianism or another. And it is to these I am writing to.

    My point of interest has been on the scriptures that speak of boasting:

    28Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.

    15Does the ax raise itself above him who swings it,
    or the saw boast against him who uses it?
    As if a rod were to wield him who lifts it up,
    or a club brandish him who is not wood!

    Here we see a negative connotation for boasting. Yet not all boasting is negative:
    4You are my King and my God,
    who decrees victories for Jacob.
    5Through you we push back our enemies;
    through your name we trample our foes.
    6I do not trust in my bow,
    my sword does not bring me victory;
    7but you give us victory over our enemies,
    you put our adversaries to shame.
    8In God we make our boast all day long,
    and we will praise your name forever.

    So we see that boasting in the Lord is not wrong. But then what is a boast?
    boast2 (bost) vi. [[ME bosten < bost, n. < Anglo-Fr; prob. via Gmc *bausia- (cf. Norw baus , bold, haughty), ult. < IE *bhou- , var. of base *bheu-, to grow, swell > BE]] 1 to talk proudly about deeds, abilities, etc., either one's own or those of someone close to one, esp. in a manner showing too much pride and satisfaction; brag 2 [Archaic] to be vainly proud; exult --vt. 1 to boast about 2 to glory in having or doing (something); be proud of [the town boasts a fine new library] --n. 1 the act of one who boasts 2 anything boasted of --boaster n. --boasting-ly adv.
    SYN.--boast, the basic term in this list, merely suggests pride or satisfaction, as in one's deeds or abilities [ you may well boast of your efficiency] ; brag suggests greater ostentation and overstatement [ he bragged of what he would do in the race] ; vaunt, a formal, literary term, implies greater suavity but more vainglory than either of the preceding [ vaunt not in your triumph] ; swagger suggests a proclaiming of one's superiority in an insolent or overbearing way; crow suggests loud boasting in exultation or triumph [ crowing over one's victory]
    To boast in the Lord is not wrong for His deeds and abilities deserve glory and honor, but to glory in one’s own deeds, or to be proud of what one has done is wrong. Now I know of no Arminianist who actually thinks he or she is glorying in what they boast in, or is proud of what they boast in, so why do I call it a boast?

    But I am getting ahead of myself. What I am talking about is this: the difference between heaven and hell. Why some go to heaven and others go to hell. Now I agree with the Arminianist when they say the difference is those who believe in Jesus go to heaven, the rest go to hell [although not all of them agree to this]. I also agree with them when they speak of the choice being of our own free will. But since we don’t make choices based simply on our ability to make choices, but rather, we make choices based on reasons. Especially, we make choices based on reasons when it comes to deep and profound subjects like life and everlasting death.
    My differences with Arminianism are in what these reasons are. They believe that everybody has the same reasons to choose to accept Jesus as they did. I reject that.
    Let us look at it from the opposite viewpoint. IF everybody did not have the same reasons to accept Jesus and be saved then it could be said that those who did accept Him had better reasons than those who did not. Where does any of these reasons come? If they come from God via the Holy Spirit, then those with better reasons had those reasons because of God and it seems reasonable that God desired their salvation more than those He didn’t give the better reasons to.

    So they have to have God giving each person the same reason as the next. Now what is the purpose? They believe God loves all people the same and wishes that none perish. The Scriptures they use to back that belief up are not properly used in context. So WHY then do some choose Christ and others NOT?
    That is my question to them.
    Some have answered because they love God more and the others love sin more. Then that becomes their boast. They still sin, yet they insinuate that they are saved because they are less lovers of sin then someone else. The Scriptures tell us that: We love Him because He first loved us [1st John 4:19 KJV], yet they say He loves all so why do they love God when others don’t?
    In the end it comes down to character. Do you steal from your company even if you could ‘get away’ with it? No, but some do. Some get jobs and feed their families, others run off and get somebody else pregnant. Good and right and righteous decisions are marks of good and right and righteous character. Is the decision to follow Christ any less than a good and right and righteous decision? Their boast then is in their own character up and over against the character of those who refuse to believe. I call them boasters in themselves.

    I don’t speak out of anger, or malice or hate, but I am simply calling it the way I see it. Can you answer WHY you chose to get saved without boasting on yourself?
    I will ask for your testimony. I will ask if you think all those who rejected Jesus knew in their hearts the same truths as you. I will then ask you WHY you chose God and them hell. I don’t think you will answer me to the end. No one has yet.

    Consider these verses...

    26Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. 27But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things--and the things that are not--to nullify the things that are, 29so that no one may boast before him. 30It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God--that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31Therefore, as it is written: "Let him who boasts boast in the Lord."

    Where is your boast?
    Why are you saved?
    Is it because Jesus saved you?
    or is it because you chose to be accept what He did for everyone and they did not? Just what then did Jesus do to save you that He didn't do to save them?
  7. Reformationist

    Reformationist Non nobis domine sed tuo nomine da gloriam

    United States
    mjwhite, thanks for the post.&nbsp; I would like to offer something, not a rebuttal, but rather a, hopefully, constructive criticism.&nbsp; First, you keep expressing the same question over and over again and, as you have said, have not received the answer you're looking for.&nbsp; So, I offer advice along with my criticism.&nbsp; Stop asking the same question.&nbsp; Those that had an opinion on the topic already answered you.&nbsp; Now, as is plainly obvious, they're not going to answer you again, nor give you the answer you desire.

    I, too, am a Calvinist, in that I believe what John Calvin taught to be the closest to the correct interpretation of God's Word.&nbsp; However, what you are doing, in my opinion, is putting waaaay too much emphasis on the believer.&nbsp; The gospel is an account of Jesus' life and deeds.&nbsp; Regardless of what anyone thinks is the justifiable reason for being elected the simple, basic bottom line is that it was for His glory, not ours.

    So, I will sum up my beliefs on the subject as this will be my last post in this thread.&nbsp; Man sinned against God (who else could he have sinned against), God cast man out of His family (the Fall), man inherited a totally depraved nature that was unresponsive to God, man could do nothing to rectify that separation, nor did he desire a relationship with God, then God picked out a people for Himself to glorify His Son.&nbsp; Because of man's transgressions he was condemned to die.&nbsp; God could not just waive His Law because it was righteous.&nbsp; His righteous justice had to be served in order for Him to remain righteous and still offer us mercy.&nbsp; Only a totally righteous being could appease God's wrath for the transgressions of man.&nbsp; There was no man who had that qualification.&nbsp; He sent His Son, Jesus.&nbsp; The death of Jesus was effectual in that it served the intended purpose for all whom God was pleased to bring to a knowledge of Himself.&nbsp; His death did not "offer" us life, it gave us life.&nbsp; It secured for us our complete and guaranteed irrevocable regeneration and adoption back into His family and He is working in us a desire to be conformed and the ability to be obedient to His Word.&nbsp; God will lose no one that He had picked out "before the foundations of the earth."&nbsp; As we were totally and completely unrighteous in our actions, and thoughts, and would forever be if not for His intervention, God did not base His decision on anything we had done, or ever would do.&nbsp; It was about Jesus.&nbsp; Our purpose in this life is to glorify Him.&nbsp; His Will for us is our sanctification.

    God bless.
  8. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    Dear Reformationist,

    Well put.
  9. franklin

    franklin Sexed up atheism = Pantheism

  10. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk Monkey Boy

    Eastern Orthodox
    To all:

    I started this thread as 1 out 5 threads to debate the merits of Calvinism vs. Arminiaism. Although I see this debate as still being very popular I feel that this particular thread has run its course. So I am going to close it.

    ***note*** i get off subject some but forgive me I had some things i wanted to say for awhile and just have not had the right time to say them.&nbsp; And also I did not include verses to back me up because this is the second time I had to write this out. But is anyone who wants them please PM me and I will give them to you.&nbsp;***

    But before I do I want to say a few things.

    First I want to say that I really enjoyed your last post Reformanist. Especially the last part where you concisely defined your beliefs. As usual it was very eloquent and wise. I agreed with much of it. I will try and sum up mcuh of my beliefs on this subject as quickly as you did.

    Personally I believe much of what Calvin taught. I believe in total depravity, unconditional election, and the Perseverance of the Saints. i do not believe in limited atonment or Irresistable grace as taught by Calvinism although I see much truth in them.

    I believe in original sin and that we are all born as sinners and that left on our own we will always sin. We will never do any action for God because I can never find God unless He iniates the relationship first.

    I bleieve that God chose us first. That before creation He chose to save us and that the choice is really God's and not ours. The elect are chocen by Him before the world began based only on Himself and not because of us.

    I believe that God sent His Son, the 2nd person of the Trinity, to the Earth to die for all mankind. That God frees us from our totally depraved state so we can choose Him or reject Him. I believe that the ability for choice is a gift from God and because we have this choice it shows that we are "made in the image of God." (not all of what it means to be made in His image though)

    Now how can I say that God chose us but then that we freely have a choice to either to accept or reject God's gift of salvation? I do not fully understand how this can be but I believe that it is true. I think that both are backed up by the bible. I do not believe that because I have been given the oppurtunity to choose that it limits God's sovereignty.&nbsp; God is still sovereign and His sovereign will still comes to be no matter how I choose.&nbsp;

    I feel that this is one of the many mysteries of God. As I have grown in my relationship with my Father I have seen that although i have gained much more knowledge I have have found out that God is more and more beyond my grasp. Surely He is not completly unknowable but my pitiful mind can't fully understand His ways. Basically He is God and I clearly am not.

    I want to say before I go any further that I could be wrong. But even if I am completly wrong I will still love and worship God. As Reformanist has reminded me during our here and there discussions&nbsp;on this subject the universe is not about me. It is about God. I might not know all of His ways but I do know that whatever way God chose to judge the world&nbsp;that it is just, noble, and good.

    I, like Job, am in no position to judge God or who He chose to save or not save. I am just very happy that He chose to set free a stubborn and stiff-necked person like me. I do not deserve in the slightest an eternal dwelling in Heaven let alone the hapiness and joy that i have experienced while on Earth. But He chose to die for me. Thus I must get down on my knees and worship Him.

    Jesus said in John that if I love Him that I should obey Him. The greatest Commandment is to:

    Matt 22:37

    That is my goal. To love God with all my being. I am not doing this because if I do not He will not love me but because He already has loved me.&nbsp; &nbsp;He laid down His life for me the least I could do is try and lay down my life for me. So I am devoting my whole life to Him and His plan and to helping others devote their lives to Him also.

    He is not just my saviour He is my King. Even though I am not a very dependable servant I pledge my life to Him. I am honored that He not only accepts me in His kingdom but He WANTS me there.

    Praise be to God. Glory to Him and His kingdom.
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