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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. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    Nonsense. If "grace imparted faith", then the choice to reject it, would not exist. Grace was "Jesus-on-the-Cross". Grace is "what is known about God is evident, for God MADE IT EVIDENT to them!" Grace is "Salvation is available---BUT, if you choose to reject Jesus, you have no excuse!"

    "Faith/belief-to-salvation comes from hearing..." "For with the heart man BELIEVES, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation".

    No matter how much "predestined-election" proponents dislike it, Paul says very clearly, "faith/belief-to-salvation comes from HEARING". Either faith-comes-from-hearing, OR faith is "imparted by God's grace". One or the other, it cannot be both. (And Paul says it's not the other)...
    Why do you find it impossible to understand that "Jesus loved us so much, that WHILE we were sinners He died for us, that whoever calls upon His name shall be saved"? (Rm5:8,10:13) Why do you reject the Scriptural premise that "His making us alive in Him is through our own faith, by our receiving Christ"? (1Pet1:9,Jn1:12)

    (Does everyone look up the Scripture reference that posters cite?)

    Where do you find Scriptural support of the idea that we are TOO DEPRAVED to RECEIVE HIM?

    (Don't respond with 1Cor2:14, "an unspiritual man accepts not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him because they are spiritually examined" , ---this verse does NOT say that he cannot accept the Spirit! Compare this to Jn10:26, where Jesus' MESSIAH-SHIP was NOT accepted, which WAS a "spiritual thing"---but they did NOT understand it because they had NOT received Jesus (they were "not of His sheep")! )
    What has this to do with our discussion? "This man casts out demons only by beelzebul the ruler of demons." (Mt12:24,31,32) Contextually, this is the "Blasphemy" Jesus referenced. Calling the Holy Spirit, "evil". But contextually with the whole Scripture, I believe (in my opinion) that the "unforgiveable blasphemy" is the HEART that calls the Holy Spirit evil. Which is identical to remaining in rejection of Him. I find no other basis in Scripture, that this remark will not be forgiven men if their hearts truly repent and receive Jesus.
     
  2. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear All,

    Follow along with my thinking and let me know what you think.

    1] God alone is savior.
    2] The blood of Jesus is able to cover everybody's sin.
    3] God doesn't save everybody.

    So the question is:

    If God loves everybody, why doesn't He save everybody?

    Two possible answers, one Arminianists, the other not.

    ONE
    God loves only those He saves. He chooses to save who He loves and He loves who He saves. The rest die in their sins and recieved their deserved judgment.[Calvinistic]

    TWO
    God loves everybody but only saves those who meet a certain condition or conditions. Salvation is dependent on a condition outside the control of God [for if He could control it, He would save all because He loves all].
    Therefore this condition or these conditions are under the control of individuals. Arminianists for the most part, call the singular condition needed: faith produced by that individual.

    The question that I have then is WHY do some people decide to have faith and others do not? No Arminianist I have asked has been able to answer that question to my satisfaction.

    Can any of you explain WHY you had [and have] faith and WHy someone else does not?

    The difference in salvation [between going to heaven or to hell] under scenario TWO above is not in what God does but what in what each individual does. So I ask, WHY do some choose hell over heaven?

    mike
     
  3. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear all,

    Ben asks,
    No matter how much "predestined-election" proponents dislike it, Paul says very clearly, "faith/belief-to-salvation comes from HEARING". Either faith-comes-from-hearing,OR faith is "imparted by God's grace". One or the other, it cannot be both.


    But ben did not prove it could not come by both, he simply asserted that.

    Does everyone who hears the gospel have faith? No!
    Did everyone who heard Jesus believe He was the Messiah? No!
    In Romans where this scripture can be found, Paul goes on to ask if they heard? Yes of course they did, he replies to himself and us. But then he asks if they understood?

    Hearing and understanding are two different operations. Hearing without understanding will not produce faith. Now many heard Jesus own words, and many hear the gospel today, the question is, do they understand it as truth?

    Let us look at a couple of scriptures.
    1st Cor. 2:7-10
    No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God has destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory. However, as it is written:
    "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has concieved what God has prepared for those who love Him" -
    but God has revealed it to us by His Spirit.

    They heard His claim, they even accused Him of claiming it, but they did not believe it. If they had, they wouldn't have crucified Jesus. hearing alone does not bring understanding and faith.

    Hearing is necessary but not complete without the Spirit revealing God's truth to our hearts. So despite eyes that see and ears that hear and minds that can think, Faith needs the Spirit's revelation as well.

    The 2nd Scripture is
    1st Cor. 1:18
    For the message of the cross is foolishness to them that are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

    Now the gospel [the message of the cross] cannot be foolishness to someone who hasn't heard. It can only be foolishness to someone who has heard but who the Spirit has not revealed the truth to their heart. They are still perishing because the gospel is foolishness to them. One cannot be expected to trust in what they consider foolishness.

    Conversely, the gospel is to us who the Spirit has revealed the things of God to, the power of God unto salvation because we hear and understand and hence believe.

    mike
     
  4. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    THREE
    God loves everybody (in the "fatherly-creative-sense") and desires everybody to be saved; but, not desiring automatons, He has predestined Jesus from the beginning of time, and He saves those who believe/receive Jesus. In His sovereignty He chooses to befriend those who will receive Him---the rest, He honors their rejection. Best explained in 1Corinthians13, "Love is patient and kind, does NOT seek its own way, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth..." This is the very fabric of our salvation, our "FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM"---it is mutual, bi-directional, LOVE. He loves us, and we love Him. Those who WILL NOT love Him, He has no choice in where to eventually send them...
    I have long wondered that myself. But maybe the Bible DOES answer that. It seems that the path away from God is paved with sin. James eloquently asserts, "Each one is tempted by his own lust. When lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death." 1:14-15

    This seems to be a perfect mirror of Heb3:12-14, that sin deceives to hardened hearts, which fall away from the living God. Precisely as Paul warns in 1Tim4:1, that some will fall away from the faith, by following deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.

    May I ask, what was the reason that satan fell? Quite simply, it was from pride, arrogance, self-focus, conceit.

    I submit, the people fall away from God, for the EXACT SAME REASONS that satan did.

    In essence, the reason of forsaking God, can be distilled down to three simple words:

    LOVE OF SIN

    The current behind this, is the question: "Does man have a will?" If the answer is NO, then we certainly cannot choose anything for ourselves. And, conversely, once those who WILL be saved (by His divine intervention), cannot BUT follow His lead in their "growth-into-Christlikeness".

    I ask you---is there any Scripture that presents itself as admonishment, encouragement towards righteousness, away from sinful living? Scripture that appears written to the SAVED? Have you ever read ANYTHING LIKE THIS? Without a will, such admonition is superfluous---we be but helpless pawns under the direction of Omnipotent God.

    But such admonitions do exist, and in plenty. Words like:

    "KEEP YOURSELVES in the love of God",

    "Do not throw away your confidence",

    "Be diligent to make certain of your calling and election, look critically at yourself that the gates of Heaven may be provided";

    "Do not be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin to falling away from the living God",

    "do not walk as the heathen do, darkened in their understanding",

    "do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good-and-acceptable-and-perfect";

    "Because of wickedness the love of many will grow cold---but he who endures to the end will be saved";

    "But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into HIM, who is the head, EVEN CHRIST";

    "So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh to live according to the flesh, (for if you live according to the flesh you must die): but obligation to live by the Spirit, which is putting to death the deeds of the body, and we will live..."

    "If you have been raised with Christ, keep seeking the things above... set your mind on things above and not on the earthly; for you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God; therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, greed (which is idolatry), on account of these the wrath of God will come, and in them you once walked; but now put them all aside, anger, wrath, malice, slander, abusive speech; do not lie to each other, since you have laied aside the old man with its evil practices and have put on the new man who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the one who created him... put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, bearing with one another, forgiving each other; above all put on love, which is the perfectbond of unity. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body, and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell in you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishment of each other, with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father..."

    I cite no Scripture numbers here, I challenge the reader to find each of these, and many, many more like them. And I ask---"do you find free will in the Bible, here in these words, or not? Free will that exists before salvation, and persists after salvation?"

    Paul says, "For with the heart man believes, resulting in salvation; and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation". Paul did not say "for man believes as the Spirit wills in his heart"...

    Salvation is belief in Jesus.

    Salvation is abiding in Him.

    "Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in Him, and he in God. And we have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love, abides in God, AND GOD ABIDES IN HIM. By this love is perfected with us, that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. There is not fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. We love, BECAUSE HE FIRST LOVED US! (1Jn4:15-19)

    The Jews would not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not believed in HIM. (Jn10:24-26) Peter KNEW He was the Christ, because Peter believed in HIM! (Mtt16:16-17)

    The Gospel is offered for all (Rm5:18, 1Jn2:2), for all who WILL BELIEVE! (Jn1:12)
     
  5. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    To all,
    Ben has replied to my post in a couple of ways.

    One, he has given the reason some trust Jesus and others don't is that those who don't trust Jesus have a love of sin. Now without disagreeing with that at all, let me say that really is only a partial answer.
    It simply begs this question: Why do some lovers of sin decide to stop loving sin and trust Jesus?

    Before answering that, those who wish to that is, Let me give you my take on what you are saying. You seem to be saying that the difference in being saved or not, in heaven or hell is not what Jesus actually did for us at the cross, but what we do with that information.
    Is that what you are saying, Ben?
    Secondly, it seems to me, that you are saying that the people who get saved do so because they have stopped loving sin, while those who do so continue to love sin.
    Is that what you mean, Ben?
    Now I am sure you will say that [and believe that] these people stop loving sin with the help of God's grace. Assuming you do think that, let me ask you this: Why does grace help some people to stop loving sin, but in others in is ineffective? What is the difference in these two people and why?

    Ben's second answer to mt questions was to assume I don't beleive in free will. Ben I know you spend alot of time answering your many forum interests but as I have told you personally [in another thread] before:
    [1] that is no excuse for assuming wrong things and attributing wrong things to people just becayse you cannot keep your many forum debaters seperate. That is lazy and wrong of you. Why are you arguing a supposed point of mine that I never made.
    There is supposed to be some give and take here, not you just blasting every person you disagree with as if they all hold the same set of beliefs and doctrines. That is wrong of you. It is unchristlike. It violates the golden rule. It is sin. Stop it.
    Would you like me to attribute every Arminianist position to you whether or not you held it? What kind of debate would that be? Why Ben, since you are an Arminianist you must believe that one must be borna again after every sin, and born again and again and again or else one sin and then if you die -hell! Some Arminianists believ that Ben, but is it fair or right that I attribute that arguement to you? That is what you do. It is wrong, it is sin.

    [2]The current behind my question is not "Does man have a will?" And itis wrong of you Ben to assume things like that. It shows your arrogance and ignorance.
    Finally Ben says these:
    [Q]The Jews would not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not believed in HIM. (Jn10:24-26) Peter KNEW He was the Christ, because Peter believed in HIM! (Mtt16:16-17) [/Q][


    How circular. How can the jews ever believe then? They can't believe because they didn't. Since they didn't believe they can't. How then is it Ben got saved, I wonder? Was there a time when Ben didn't believe? If so, and according to his logic, he wouldn't ever be able to believe.

    And as to Peter. He knew Jesus was the Christ because God the Father revealed it to Peter. But using Ben's logic, a modern day believer in Jesus must believe in Jesus before he knows who He is. Impossible.

    [Q]The Gospel is offered for all (Rm5:18, 1Jn2:2), for all who WILL BELIEVE! (Jn1:12)[/Q]

    We agree, but the question remains, why do some believe. Ben has not answered it.

    mike
     
  6. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear all,

    At the beginning of this thread, the Arminianist position on the 'elect' was stated as such: Arminainism- Conditional election- God did choose before the foundation of the world people to become the elect but this choice was based upon foreknowledge of those that He knew would choose Him. So He knew i would choose to be a Christian so i am part of the elect. So God's choice is based upon what I would later freely do.

    Now assuming that the Arminianists on this thread agree with that quote [since they did not correct it or deny it] I wish to make some observations.

    The Arminianists seemed to think that John 3:16 means that God loves everyone and sent Jesus to save them, or at least give them a chance to be saved [by accepting Jesus].

    BUT, if God in His foreknowledge knew who would accept Christ from before the foundations of the world [and thus chose them as His elect] wouldn't that mean He also knew that when He sent to Jesus, only those certain people [the elect] would believe.

    In fact, using that same old tired argument used against Calvinists, how could the elect NOT accept Jesus, and how could ANYONE ELSE accept Him? Therefore when He sent Jesus, God knew only a certain set number of limited people would be saved by His death.

    So knowing that the sending of Jesus would only save the elect, how does God actually show love towards the non-elect by sending Jesus? He knew before Jesus came that they would refuse. He knew before Jesus died who would be saved.

    So knowing that Jesus life and death and His shed blood would not save these non-elect, saying in John 3:16 that I love you guys and I prove it [Romans 5:8 God demonstrated His love that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us] by sending Jesus is a sham. He knew they wouldn't accept Jesus, that Jesus could not save them.

    God knows that there are some people that no amount of prayer, no amount of persuasion can ever win them over to Christ. For if it could then God's foreknowledge is wrong and lets go party if the Bible isn't true.

    So a verse like in 2 Peter that says God is patient, not willing that any of you perish, but that all come to repentance CANNOT mean God is waiting for all those who might get saved, for He already knows who won't get saved and who will.

    Or like 1 John 2 where God is the savior of the whole world. Sorry. God knows He does not have a chance to save everyone. He already knows who will perish.

    Or in Itim where it says Hw wants all men to be saved. So? He knows that only a portion of men will be saved and He knows exactly who they are.

    Basically, God in knowing the future and in already knowing who the saved elect would be, did not send Jesus into the world to save everybody. He knew Jesus could and would for sure only save the elect.
    Ben,

    I guess then there are those people who God knew would love sin more than Him, so much that He couldn't save them from themselves and their evil desires. But some better people, those who don't love sin so much, Now them God can save.

    This seems to be the Arminianist position, or where have I got off track?

    mike
     
  7. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    It's not "the information" that we "do something with", it is "whether or not we receive JESUS". Adam was created in communion with God, sinless; but Adam chose to rebel. Is our saved state so superior to the relationship with which Adam was created, that we lack the same latitude as he had?
    Life is a question of priority. "Idol" is ascribed to anything that possesses us more than God. MONEY can be an idol, a husband or wife can be an idol---anything that places higher in our esteem than our Lord. From Adam we inherit a sin-nature, the propensity towards sin. Salvation occurs upon conviction, upon belief. Jesus becomes real to the listener, he literally falls in love with God. The propensity to sin still exists (for as long as he has flesh), but by conviction he understands the "wage-of-sin" (eternal death), and He believes in the loving presence of Christ and the Holy Spirit. Thus God occupies higher priority in his esteem. Yet, Scripturally, if he is deceived back into sin, back into unbelief, if he "is again entangled in the defilements of the world and overcome", his priority becomes something other-than-God.

    Adam fell because he was presented with a choice, and chose wrongly. That ability to choose, that law-of-will, has never been revoked.
    The very nature of "OSAS" is to deny free will. If we are "predestined-elected", it is called "IRRESISTABLE GRACE"---that man first has no will to come to God, and then has no will to resist if God commands he be saved (and then has no will to reject God after that). If we CHOOSE to believe, yet God interferes dynamically in our approach to preclude us from later rejecting Him, we have no will then either. The contradiction is in saying that "Christians DO sin", which forever-refutes that God has installed in us His presence (that we are embodiments of Christ)---as Scripture says, "no one born of God sins; if the Spirit of God abides, he CANNOT sin". But it is obvious that Christians CAN and DO sin. So it is equally obvious that there must be something more to the "God-abiding-in-us" concept than just that He installs salvation, and/or He maintains our salvation.

    By definition, he-who-believes-in-OSAS, also believes free will has limits.
    No. The Jews did not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not received Him. Because Peter had received JESUS as his LORD and SAVIOR, Peter believed He was the Messiah. It's not a "catch-22", it's a "receive-Him, or NOT".

    Rather than discussing "facets and aspects", let's discuss the subject directly. Calvinism has as its tenets:

    &#149that fallen man was totally unable to save himself (Total Depravity)
    &#149that God's electing purpose was not conditioned by anything in man (Unconditional Election)
    &#149that Christ's atoning death was sufficient to save all men, but efficient only for the elect (Limited Atonement)
    &#149that the gift of faith, sovereignly given by God's Holy Spirit, cannot be resisted by the elect (Irresistible Grace)
    &#149that those who are regenerated and justified will persevere in the faith (Perseverance of the saints)

    In all of this, the assumption is that "God lays aside man's will"---to some extent or other.

    The main tenets of Arminianism are:
    1.God has decreed to save through Jesus Christ those of the fallen and sinful race who through the grace of the Holy Spirit believe in him, but leaves in sin the incorrigible and unbelieving. (In other words predestination is said to be conditioned by God's foreknowledge of who would respond to the gospel)
    2.Christ died for all men (not just for the elect), but no one except the believer has remission of sin.
    3.Man can neither of himself nor of his free will do anything truly good until he is born again of God, in Christ, through the Holy Spirit. (Though accused of such, Arminius and his followers were not Pelagians.)
    4.All good deeds or movements in the regenerate must be ascribed to the grace of God but his grace is not irresistible.
    5.Those who are incorporated into Christ by a true faith have power given them through the assisting grace of the Holy Spirit to persevere in the faith. But it is possible for a believer to fall from grace.

    The question becomes, which of these ten precepts harmonize with Scripture?

    The first point of Calvinism I accept. Man can NOT save himself. There is but ONE Savior, always was, always will be. But "total depravity" has come to mean that "man is so depraved that he cannot receive Christ to do the action of salvation IN him." This is not represented in the Bible---man comes to Christ through his own faith, born of the conviction from hearing the Gospel. There is no "Spirit-revealed-truth-to-SOME-but-not-ALL".

    The second tenet of Calvinism I reject. John says that "if any believe in Christ, they will be saved". But Jesus Himself lays down conditions: "Repentant" (Lk13:3), "Doing Father's will" (Mtt7:21), "humbled as children" (Mtt18:3-4), "born again" (Jn3:3). Salvation is receiving Jesus, ABIDING IN CHRIST. (1Jn4:16) THIS then is the only condition, on which all the others are based.

    The third tenet of Calvinism I accept. His death WAS sufficient to save all, but efficient only for the elect. My only contention, is that to me, the Bible calls the elect, "ALL THOSE WHO BELIEVE"...

    The fourth tenet of Calvinism I absolutely reject. God can always be resisted. Our saved-state is NOT superior to Adam's pre-fall-condition. I have posted many Scriptures admonishing us to endure, persevere, grow---and there are many more just like them. These would not exist if it was GOD who installed and maintained our salvation...

    The fifth tenet of Calvinism is so terribly easy to disprove, Scripturally. Peter talks of those who WERE saved, THEN fell. Those-who-would-be-Calvanists are very dismayed by the ease with which Scripture profoundly refutes this. In desperation they claim "THEY (2Pet2) WERE NEVER SAVED". It seems Peter THOUGHT of this (or rather, Peter's INSPIRATION, thought of this)---because in chapter 1 of the second letter, the exact same precise description of US-WHO-ARE-SAVED removes any contradiction that the chapter two ESCAPEES were equally saved. And any contradiction that they fell from salvation. James 5:19-20 is similarly difficult to refute. Scripture is replete with case after case of warnings against "falling-from-salvation", admonishments to "not grow hard and fall". The entire book of Hebrews is a serious frustration to those-who-would-believe this tennet.

    The first tennet of Arminianism I accept. Indeed, this is word-for-word from Romans1: "And even though they KNEW God, they did not honor Him, ...exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image... therefore God gave them over to a base and depraved mind..."

    The second tennet of Arminianism I accept. I do not believe John was being "obtuse or hypothetical" when he said: "Christ is the propitiation for our sins, not for ours only but for those of the whole world" (1Jn2:2).

    I don't think I completely accept tennet #3. It is obvious that good things are done by atheists and worldly men (though the argument might be made that God was operating THROUGH them). But I do not hold to "total-depravity", inasmuch as it is assumed men are SO depraved they cannot even TURN to God. The will of man allows his ability to RECEIVE JESUS...

    Tenet number 4 harmonizes what Jesus said (about only those who DO the Father's will inherit Heaven), and the verses that say "salvation is NOT works" (Eph2:8)---because of the understanding that, salvation being Christ-IN-US, it is JESUS who does the good things THROUGH us (Php2:12-13). And it seems a "no-brainer" that His grace IS resistible...

    I don't really accept precept #5. Yes the Holy Spirit DOES indwell us, giving us power to endure; but I do not really believe that a person is "able to fall". I think "stumble" is closer to the reality---and I use the Biblical "ptaio" definition of "stumble", "to become wretched". "Fall" conveys a sudden, instant event; and Scripturally, falling-away-from-the-faith is "by the deceitfulness of sin". Which occurs in a definite progression (temptation, lust, sin, death ---Jms1:14-15); and it happens over some time.

    So, you see, I do not think it fair to propose only TWO POSITIONS---"Calvinistic" and "Arminian"---it seems the truth lies between the two, and within the pages of Scripture....
     
  8. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    The points on CALVINISM and ARMINIANISM were taken from here...
     
  9. Caedmon

    Caedmon kawaii Supporter

    +538
    Catholic
    US-Others
    Ben, and everyone else, that article has no cited sources whatsoever. I wouldn't trust it any further than I could throw my puter.

    There are a few quotes, but half of them aren't specified, and none of them are cited with notes.

    For example, specific names are not given in some of the quotes:

    "A Catholic writer had this to say of the Institutes"

    "a Lutheran professor at Wittenberg, in response to an overture of fraternity from the Dutch Reformed, writes these remarks"

    Who are these unnamed critics? In which publications did their words appear? This article does not use good scholarship.
     
  10. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    Huh??? I did not refer to or credit any article---I documented the source I used of the five precepts of Calvinism, and the five of Arminianism. A source that I simply searched the internet for---and I did not read the webpage in detail, I was only looking fot the five points of each. If you have a better source of these ten points, please by all means post it.

    Now---what about the rest of my post?

    :)
     
  11. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear all,

    My recent inquiries received this response:

    You seem to be saying that the difference in being saved or not, in heaven or hell is not what Jesus actually did for us at the cross, but what we do with that information. Is that what you are saying, Ben?


    It's not "the information" that we "do something with", it is "whether or not we receive JESUS". Adam was created in communion with God, sinless; but Adam chose to rebel. Is our saved state so superior to the relationship with which Adam was created, that we lack the same latitude as he had?


    Receiving Jesus and doing something can be the very same thing. Receiving Jesus is doing something is it not? And before we can receive Jesus, we must have some information about who He is and what He has done, do we not? So I think Ben is being a little picky here. Basically Ben is agreeing with my statement that it is not Jesus actually did, but the difference in being saved or not [one of the elect] is in what we do [we have to receive Him].


    As far as the difference between Adam and Christians [if that is what I Ben is referring to], there is a difference: God’s Holy Spirit didn’t indwell Adam like he does Christians. If Ben was talking about Adam and everybody, then yes we have the same latitude Adam had: we can choose to sin, and we all do. The difference is not between our will and Adam’s, but the difference is in who we are that Adam wasn’t. We have a different relationship with God then Adam. We have different promises contingent on different things. Adam’s eternal life was contingent on his obedience. Lack of obedience brought him death, both physical and spiritual.
    Our eternal life is not contingent on obedience, but on Christ’s obedience fulfilled in His life which especially includes His greatest act of obedience, His death on the cross. Because Christ was obedient all of His life, He was an acceptable sacrifice for His people whom He came to save [the elect].
    Adam’s eternal life was contingent on Adam always obeying, while our eternal life is contingent on Christ, our mediator. Those who faith in Christ receive eternal life. These are the elect God sent Jesus to die for and to save.
    So in the one sense, we have latitude like Adam in that we freely act, as we desire, even as he did. But in another and greater sense we are not like Adam because we have the Spirit indwelling us and He is part of us even as we are part of Christ’s body and a part of God.

    Next quote:

    Secondly, it seems to me, that you are saying that the people who get saved do so because they have stopped loving sin, while those who do not do so continue to love sin.

    Life is a question of priority. "Idol" is ascribed to anything that possesses us more than God. MONEY can be an idol, a husband or wife can be an idol---anything that places higher in our esteem than our Lord. From Adam we inherit a sin-nature, the propensity towards sin. Salvation occurs upon conviction, upon belief. Jesus becomes real to the listener, he literally falls in love with God. The propensity to sin still exists (for as long as he has flesh), but by conviction he understands the "wage-of-sin" (eternal death), and He believes in the loving presence of Christ and the Holy Spirit. Thus God occupies higher priority in his esteem. Yet, Scripturally, if he is deceived back into sin, back into unbelief, if he "is again entangled in the defilements of the world and overcome", his priority becomes something other-than-God.

    Adam fell because he was presented with a choice, and chose wrongly. That ability to choose, that law-of-will, has never been revoked.


    Well that never answered my question. I wasn’t asking about how people stay saved. Maybe my question wasn’t clear, and the fault is mine. But Ben raises a good point that might address my question. He says: Adam fell because he was presented with a choice, and chose wrongly. That ability to choose, that law-of-will, that has never been revoked.
    Now the elect [of whom this thread is about] according to Arminianism are the elect because God looked into the future and saw that they would choose God, and so He elected them. Is this choice [to choose Jesus] like Adams choice to sin [at the Fall]? Is this what salvation is, to choose correctly [as opposed to Adam, who chose wrongly]?

    The next quote:

    Ben's second answer to my questions was to assume I don't believe in free will.

    The very nature of "OSAS" is to deny free will. If we are "predestined-elected", it is called "IRRESISTABLE GRACE"---that man first has no will to come to God, and then has no will to resist if God commands he be saved (and then has no will to reject God after that). If we CHOOSE to believe, yet God interferes dynamically in our approach to preclude us from later rejecting Him, we have no will then either. The contradiction is in saying that "Christians DO sin", which forever-refutes that God has installed in us His presence (that we are embodiments of Christ)---as Scripture says, "no one born of God sins; if the Spirit of God abides, he CANNOT sin". But it is obvious that Christians CAN and DO sin. So it is equally obvious that there must be something more to the "God-abiding-in-us" concept than just that He installs salvation, and/or He maintains our salvation.

    By definition, he-who-believes-in-OSAS, also believes free will has limits.


    Ben is simply making assertions of his own imaginings here.

    He completely ignored my question to him about Acts 4.

    He also ignored my complaints on his assuming I hold all sorts of beliefs and doctrines and he does so because he lumps all Calvinist types into one big barrel and fails to properly respond to their individual questions. He has been rude like that to me in the past, and he continues to be. I wish he would stop it. I do not think it is a proper way to deal with others, and I know he doesn’t like it when others treat him that way. So therefore it is sin and he should stop it, repent of it and not do it anymore.

    You are acting un-Christlike Ben. Stop it! Using the I-have-too-many-threads excuse or the I’m-an-old-guy excuse is not the proper way to deal with your mistreatment of others.

    Can anyone properly answer my question on Acts 4:27-28 since Ben is ignoring it?

    Did the rulers and the Jews freely put Jesus to death? And if so, how could they if they were doing what God’s power and will had decided beforehand that they would do it?

    But Ben is not sure what OSAS believes about free will.
    First He says this:
    The very nature of "OSAS" is to deny free will.
    Then he says this:
    By definition, he-who-believes-in-OSAS, also believes free will has limits.
    How can we believe free will has limits when we deny it?

    He also says this: If we are "predestined-elected", it is called "IRRESISTABLE GRACE"---that man first has no will to come to God, and then has no will to resist if God commands he be saved (and then has no will to reject God after that). If we CHOOSE to believe, yet God interferes dynamically in our approach to preclude us from later rejecting Him, we have no will then either

    But as I explained, [and he failed to address] that God’s predestining will doesn’t exclude our free will [see Acts 4:27-28]. Likewise as I also explained, [and later Ben agreed] In Arminianism, that God already knows who the elect are and has predestined them. So whether God elects us first, or God elects us based on His foreknowledge of our future choices, all Christians are the predestined elect. All Christians must become saved, and no one that God failed to foresee choosing Him cannot be saved. God knew this when He sent Jesus that only those predestined elect could be saved.
    Likewise when God created the world, He knew that only the predestined elect [Arminianist or Calvinist definition] could and would get saved. He knew that the rest would go to hell. He made them anyway. So how is it that John 3:16 means that God loved everybody and showed it by sending Jesus, while all the while knowing only the predestined elect would be saved?

    I also showed some Scriptures that showed that it was not just the plain hearing with the physical ear that brought faith, but also the revelation to the heart by the Spirit.
    Ben addressed that point like this:

    [Q]The Jews would not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not believed in HIM. (Jn10:24-26) Peter KNEW He was the Christ, because Peter believed in HIM! (Mtt16:16-17) [/Q]



    And when I responded thus:

    How circular. How can the Jews ever believe then? They can't believe because they didn't. Since they didn't believe they can't. How then is it Ben got saved, I wonder? Was there a time when Ben didn't believe? If so, and according to his logic, he wouldn't ever be able to believe.



    He said this:
    No. The Jews did not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not received Him. Because Peter had received JESUS as his LORD and SAVIOR, Peter believed He was the Messiah. It's not a "catch-22", it's a "receive-Him, or NOT".


    Maybe he misunderstands the question. I am talking about why someone would receive Jesus, or, why someone would chose to believe in Jesus [if that were possible, to chose what your heart believes].

    But Ben speaks in circles.

    Why, I ask anyone, would the Jews receive Jesus if they didn’t believe in Him? Do we ask people to receive Jesus before they believe in Him? They would think us nuts.

    Trust comes before action. Belief comes before receiving.
    Why would Peter, or anyone for that matter, receive Jesus as their Lord and savior before they believed in Jesus?
    Did you think that you yourself Ben received Jesus as Lord and Savior and then believed on Him?

    Faith comes first and in this order:
    First we need to hear with the ears of the head in order to have cognitive knowledge of the truth. But head knowledge doesn’t save. [See my former post, or read Romans 10:13-19 AND 1ST Cor. 1:16, and chap. 2:6-10.] God has to reveal the truth to our hearts. Those who know this truth in their hearts confess it and are saved [Rom. 10:9-10]
    So first we hear the gospel, then the Spirit enlightens us, and then we confess His name and we are saved. Belief comes before our act of faith [the confession of Jesus].

    Ben then goes on to a long explanation or the differences between Arminianism and Calvinism. Since this thread is about the ELECT, I will deal only with that point, and related ideas.
    The main tenets of Arminianism are:
    1.God has decreed to save through Jesus Christ those of the fallen and sinful race who through the grace of the Holy Spirit believe in him, but leaves in sin the incorrigible and unbelieving. (In other words predestination is said to be conditioned by God's foreknowledge of who would respond to the gospel)
    2.Christ died for all men (not just for the elect), but no one except the believer has remission of sin.


    And his take on that point:
    The first tennet of Arminianism I accept. Indeed, this is word-for-word from Romans1: "And even though they KNEW God, they did not honor Him, ...exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image... therefore God gave them over to a base and depraved mind..."

    Well… It is not even close to a word for word from Romans 1. But that is not my point, but I do wonder why he said that.
    The point is that Ben agrees with the 1st tenet of Arminianism. So that means that only the predestined elect can be saved. The second point of Arminianism says that Christ died for all men, not just those predestined elect. Now it seems strange to me that Christ would die for their [the un-elect] sins, knowing that when He created the world He knew they would be damned. What then is the point of dying for the sins of the positively sure to be damned?
    John 3:16 says God sent Jesus because He loved the world, but Arminianism says that God knew that all the un-elect would always and ever be damned. How does sending Jesus do anything for them, since the purpose of the cross is for the remission of sins and He knew theirs would never be remitted

    His take on point two is thus:
    The second tennet of Arminianism I accept. I do not believe John was being "obtuse or hypothetical" when he said: "Christ is the propitiation for our sins, not for ours only but for those of the whole world" (1Jn2:2).


    If by the whole world, Ben [or anyone for that matter] means all people then I have some questions for them.
    First some definitions from The American Heritage Dictionary:
    pro·pi·ti·ate (pr-psh-t)
    tr.v. pro·pi·ti·at·ed, pro·pi·ti·at·ing, pro·pi·ti·ates
    To conciliate (an offended power); appease: propitiate the gods with a sacrifice.
    con·cil·i·ate (kn-sl-t)

    And what does conciliate mean?
    v. con·cil·i·at·ed, con·cil·i·at·ing, con·cil·i·ates
    1. To overcome the distrust or animosity of; appease.
    2. To regain or try to regain (friendship or goodwill) by pleasant behavior.
    3. To make or attempt to make compatible; reconcile.
    .
    So my question to Ben [and anyone else] is this: Since God knew that by sending Jesus to die would NOT appease Him for the non-elect, since they would refuse to believe, why did He send Jesus to TRY and APPEASE Himself by having Jesus die for these people for whom God KNEW there would be no reconcilation EVER?
    God made them knowing they would go to Hell, and then he sent Jesus to die for them to try and please Himself all the while knowing that for these non-elect it wouldn’t work! That doesn’t make sense to me, can some Arminianist help me understand?

    Finally Ben ends up with this: So, you see, I do not think it fair to propose only TWO POSITIONS---"Calvinistic" and "Arminian"---it seems the truth lies between the two, and within the pages of Scripture....

    But he has not really strayed from the basic Arminianist position, but only quibbled with a few definitions that change not the thrust of Arminianism. There are many facets to both Calvinism and Arminianism that cover a wide range of people’s beliefs. One should not lump everyone together and assume the other HAS to hold to certain beliefs. One might learn the truth by just thoughtfully listening. The Spirit does speak through many diverse voices. Listen in your heart for Him.

    In Christ,
    mike
     
  12. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
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    Dear all,

    Ben did indeed get his 10 points from that website which seems to me to do a good job of reporting them. His post [#68] gives the link for that website. This is also from that website:

    As a theological system Arminianism tries to mediate between the supralapsarianism of Beza, who taught that God willed the fall of man in order to accomplish his decrees, and the Pelagian view, which denied original sin, regarding grace as unnecessary for salvation. Arminianism is flawed by a serious contradiction: on the one hand it affirms predestination and grace, while on the other hand denying it or gutting it of any real significance by asserting that it is conditional upon man's free will. The theologian Otto Heick describes Arminianism as an oxymoron, an "absolute conditionalism":

    "God in his decrees is conditioned by man's free will -

    Man in his search for salvation is conditioned by God's grace".


    So you can see that the website is not slanted towards Arminianism. I think humblejoe should lighten up. these points are pretty normal. If humblejoe thinks any of them wrong, let him explain please.

    By the way, what do you all think of that person's assessment of Arminiansim?
    [Q]
    As a theological system Arminianism tries to mediate between the supralapsarianism of Beza, who taught that God willed the fall of man in order to accomplish his decrees, and the Pelagian view, which denied original sin, regarding grace as unnecessary for salvation. Arminianism is flawed by a serious contradiction: on the one hand it affirms predestination and grace, while on the other hand denying it or gutting it of any real significance by asserting that it is conditional upon man's free will. The theologian Otto Heick describes Arminianism as an oxymoron, an "absolute conditionalism":

    "God in his decrees is conditioned by man's free will -

    Man in his search for salvation is conditioned by God's grace". [/Q]
    mike
     
  13. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

    300
    +0
    Well, it stands to reason, that when someone doesn't like the way the transalation reads in english, they desire to change it to read the wayn they deisre it read, afterall, what is to stop one from doing it.

    The Mormons, The Catholic Church, The Jehovah Witness's amongest others have added to, and re translated the Word to suit thier teachings.

    I have yet to see, a transalation that translates the verse in question; as retranslated here.

    I am afraid that what is really at issue is whether God is Sovereign or NOT,.

    Man throughout the ages, uses his own limited understanding to try and rationilze God and His ways, and in these last days, even His own Words area changed to teach what the natural man, thinks it ought to say.

    Instead of submitting to the Word of God in fear and trembling; man today will use Gods own Words to teach lies, deception, and elevate man to one all knowing being;

    And why not, afterall, this was the great deception spoken of by the father of lies;

    " Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil."

    So, according to those that deny the Sovereignty of, man is perfectly able to accomplish his perfect will, when it comes to maters of eternity, since he discerns "good and evil."
     
  14. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson I Like Traffic Lights

    366
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    Christian
    Which is why I go to the original source. Keeps it from happening.

    And Luther and Calvin never did?? (See the reading of "world" as "elect" for one, when none of the original church fathers ever did)

     
  15. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

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    That is obvious!, the sovereignty you espouse, is mans, over Gods.
     
  16. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson I Like Traffic Lights

    366
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    Christian
    That's a great ad hominem, but you didn't address a single thing in my post. There are some tough questions in there, though.
     
  17. Lion Heart

    Lion Heart Member

    300
    +0

    Thats wonderful, any answers to your tough questions which would conclude the prosition you are arguing, is nothing other than a rejection of what has already been rejected by the Reformationists, And I don't mean the one that posts herein.

    You proposition ultimately is no different than what ALL cults teach, and that is that;


    " God has provided a way for man to save himself"

    How is this any different from the doctrine of works?


    The answers is, it isn't!
     
  18. Ben johnson

    Ben johnson Legend Supporter

    +374
    Christian
    Receiving Jesus is doing something is it not?
    No, it is not. Salvation is receiving Christ (Jn1:12, Col2:6).

    "'Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man shall give to you; for on Him the Father, even God, has set His seal.' And they said to Him, 'What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?' Jesus answered, 'This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent'". Jn6:27-29 Receiving Jesus by belief is not a work---it is to surrender ourselves to HIS work of salvation IN us. It is NOT "our work", it is "THE WORK OF GOD!"

    And before we can receive Jesus, we must have some information about who He is and what He has done, do we not?
    "Now faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of God. If you confess with your mouth Jesus as LORD (faith) and believe in your hearts God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation." Rm10

    So in the one sense, we have latitude like Adam in that we freely act, as we desire, even as he did. But in another and greater sense we are not like Adam because we have the Spirit indwelling us and He is part of us even as we are part of Christ's body and a part of God.
    The difference between your (OSAS) and my (OSNAS) perspectives, is that Scriptures teaches us "the Holy Spirit dwells in us when we believe, and departs when we disbelieve"...

    Is this choice [to choose Jesus] like Adams choice to sin [at the Fall]? Is this what salvation is, to choose correctly (as opposed to Adam, who chose wrongly)?
    Adam knew very well that what he was about to do was rebellion and against God's command, but Adam did it anyway. Scripture tells us that under the New Covenant (JESUS), He is revealed to all men (Rm1:20), all men are called to Him (Jn12:32), but some men receive Him and others reject Him (Jn3:18). Those who "beleive not" also know very well whom they are rejecting (Rm1:21).

    Ben is simply making assertions of his own imaginings here.
    "My own imaginings"? Every assertion I have made has been backed by Scripture. How may Scripture references were in your last several posts??? On a theology debate, it is desireable to not become personal, but rather to contend with Scripture...

    He completely ignored my question to him about Acts 4.
    I don't remember you asking about Acts chapter 4 verses 27-30. Where in that passage does it say that God predestined Pilate's and Herod's eternity? It seems that Jesus WAS PREDESTINED, but Pilate and Herod were convenient. God used them, but did not create their bent. What of Mary? Was She commanded to be righteous? No. God chose the time and place, Mary was convenient. Had God chosen a different time, or place, or had Mary not been righteous, He would have chosen a different vessel for Christ's birth...

    He has been rude like that to me in the past, and he continues to be. I wish he would stop it. I do not think it is a proper way to deal with others, and I know he doesn't like it when others treat him that way. So therefore it is sin and he should stop it, repent of it and not do it anymore.
    Kindly do not make the discussions personal. I have not, nor will I ever, attack anyone on a personal level. I do not believe I have been rude. If I ever appear so, then I promptly and humbly apologise. I contend for Scripture, specifically "OSNAS"; in responding to posts, I often make comments on other aspects of "OSAS", as they occur to me. If I am wrong on Scriptural points, prove me so with Scripture---I assure you I will listen.

    But Ben is not sure what OSAS believes about free will. First He says this: The very nature of "OSAS" is to deny free will.
    Then he says this: By definition, he-who-believes-in-OSAS, also believes free will has limits. How can we believe free will has limits when we deny it?
    I'm very pleased to hear that. Then you recognize that man has free will to either accept Jesus, or reject Him. From the start, to the finish. We are in agreement on "OSNAS". Free will has no limits...

    So how is it that John 3:16 means that God loved everybody and showed it by sending Jesus, while all the while knowing only the predestined elect would be saved?
    It's a question of responsibility. Salvation is NOT God-directed, it is "free will". So that God's INTENT allowed only one option for Him---to create mankind, knowing that Adam would fall, to purpose from the beginning Jesus as the "propitiation for the fallen", to make believing the responsibility of each man. This is the application of His sovereignty that He has chosen, MUST have chosen because of His desire (the "FELLOWSHIP/ABIDING" thing)...

    Did you think that you yourself Ben received Jesus as Lord and Savior and then believed on Him?
    "Receiving Jesus", "believing on Jesus", "Born Again", "Lord-and-Savior", "abiding-in-Him", are all identically the same. Mere "belief-as-in-head-knowledge" is not salvation (Jms1:19). It's a special KIND of belief, the belief that receives Him AS Lord AND Savior. Which IS "Born Again". Which IS "Abiding in Him". Which IS saved...

    Faith comes first and in this order: First we need to hear with the ears of the head in order to have cognitive knowledge of the truth. But head knowledge doesn't save. [See my former post, or read Romans 10:13-19 AND 1ST Cor. 1:16 Huh??? and chap. 2:6-10. The MYSTERY, predestined from the BEGINNING of TIME, is JESUS-IN-YOU (Col1:27) God has to reveal the truth to our hearts. Those who know this truth in their hearts confess it and are saved [Rom. 10:9-10] So first we hear the gospel, then the Spirit enlightens us, and then we confess His name and we are saved. Belief comes before our act of faith [the confession of Jesus]
    God's truth is revealed to ALL MEN. He calls all men. He died for all men. ALL MEN are enlightened. Some receive Jesus, some reject Him (love sin more).

    The point is that Ben agrees with the 1st tenet of Arminianism. So that means that only the predestined elect can be saved.
    HUH???
    Those who choose to believe become God's chosen (see Matt22:1-14, esp14). Those who disbelieve, He leaves in their sin. Those who choose to become His sheep (Jn10:9) He predestines ONLY to become CHRISTLIKE, predestination founded SOLELY on their SURRENDER and WILLINGNESS to follow Him…

    How does sending Jesus do anything for them, since the purpose of the cross is for the remission of sins and He knew theirs would never be remitted?
    RESPONSIBILITY. For God to be JUST, they must be without excuse. They must be guilty because of their own choice. Thus, Jesus died for all men (Rm5:18,1Jn2:2), and whoever receives/believes/abides in Him, is saved---but those who reject Him, is condemned (Jn3:18)

    Which is why I go to the original source. Keeps it from happening.
    Not at all. We just don't buy the same definition of sovereignty as you do.

    Bravo, Scott! God is bound by His own nature---He cannot do evil, for He is perfect good, and perfect love. He cannot be unjust, for He is perfectly just. Therefore, His own nature allows only one application of His sovereignty---He must provide salvation for all men, and then allow all men to either accept it or reject it. Rom1:20 is the embodiment for His approach---on the Day of Judgment, each man stands unjudged because of Christ's cloak-of-righteousness (washed in His blood when he RECEIVED CHRIST), or condemned because of his own chosen sin. The very existence of JUSTNESS demands free will.
     
  19. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear All,

    I asked and was answered: Receiving Jesus is doing something is it not?
    No, it is not. Salvation is receiving Christ (Jn1:12, Col2:6).



    If you are not doing something how can you be receiving? The act of receiving is ‘doing’ even if it is passive. Making a choice is doing something. Is Ben saying man gets saved without making choices, without receiving Christ? No he does not. Have you thrown the dictionary and grammar usage out the window Ben?
    Or are you just trying to be argumentative?

    He says this: "'Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man shall give to you; for on Him the Father, even God, has set His seal.' And they said to Him, 'What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?' Jesus answered, 'This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent'". Jn6:27-29 Receiving Jesus by belief is not a work---it is to surrender ourselves to HIS work of salvation IN us. It is NOT "our work", it is "THE WORK OF GOD!"
    How does one surrender without doing something? Surrendering is doing something. The whole point is not to trap Ben into saying salvation is by works [which he has repeatedly said that it is not] but to talk about what differentiates the elect from the nonelect.

    Believing is doing something. Why do some believe and others do not? That was the question I answered using Scripture. Ben has not answered it except to say the nonelect love sin more. So I asked why they love sin more than the elect. He has given no reasonable answer.

    And before we can receive Jesus, we must have some information about who He is and what He has done, do we not?
    "Now faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of God. If you confess with your mouth Jesus as LORD (faith) and believe in your hearts God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation." Rm10

    That we agree on.


    So in the one sense, we have latitude like Adam in that we freely act, as we desire, even as he did. But in another and greater sense we are not like Adam because we have the Spirit indwelling us and He is part of us even as we are part of Christ's body and a part of God.
    The difference between your (OSAS) and my (OSNAS) perspectives, is that Scriptures teaches us "the Holy Spirit dwells in us when we believe, and departs when we disbelieve"...


    This is his assertion, his take on Scripture of which I believe is false. The Holy Spirit dwells in us when we believe and forever, since the Holy Spirit only dwells in true believers. He never leaves true believers.


    Is this choice [to choose Jesus] like Adams choice to sin [at the Fall]? Is this what salvation is, to choose correctly (as opposed to Adam, who chose wrongly)?
    Adam knew very well that what he was about to do was rebellion and against God's command, but Adam did it anyway. Scripture tells us that under the New Covenant (JESUS), He is revealed to all men (Rm1:20), all men are called to Him (Jn12:32), but some men receive Him and others reject Him (Jn3:18). Those who "beleive not" also know very well whom they are rejecting (Rm1:21).

    This is a poor reading of Scripture. Ben asserts things that Romans isn’t saying. He is reading his doctrine into the Word instead of letting the Word teach him.
    Scripture does not say “Under the New Covenant [JESUS] …is revealed to all men.
    Without getting personal that is an outright falsity. It says in Romans 1:20-21

    20 For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse: 21 because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither gave thanks; but became vain in their reasonings, and their senseless heart was darkened. [ASV]

    It is false theology to say that Jesus is revealed through the things that are made. The scripture plainly tells us that Jesus was not revealed but by His own witness and the witness of His people since then, See 1 Cor. 2

    6 We speak wisdom, however, among them that are fullgrown: yet a wisdom not of this world, nor of the rulers of this world, who are coming to nought: 7 but we speak God's wisdom in a mystery, even the wisdom that hath been hidden, which God foreordained before the worlds unto our glory: 8 which none of the rulers of this world hath known: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory: 9 but as it is written, Things which eye saw not, and ear heard not, And which entered not into the heart of man, Whatsoever things God prepared for them that love him. 10 But unto us God revealed them through the Spirit: [emphasis mine]

    Here plainly it says that this was a mystery that had been hidden and the rulers knew it not. But this mystery is revealed to us by the Spirit.

    Likewise, just because the word ‘all’ is used in a sentence, it doesn’t have to mean ‘everyone who ever lived or will live’. The Zondervan NIV Bible Commentary has this to say about John 12:32:
    ‘ “All men” does not imply that everyone will ultimately be saved; instead, it means that Christ draws people to Himself indiscriminately, without regard to their nationality, race, or status. Jesus’ utterance was prompted by the presence of Greek Gentiles and should be evaluated in that context.’

    To point out in John where ‘all’ does not mean everybody.
    Look at John 3:26 And they came unto John, and said to him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond the Jordan, to whom thou hast borne witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him.

    Yet not everyone who ever lived, nor even all those alive at that time, nor not even all those in Israel came to Him. That is not the meaning of ‘all’.

    Let us look at John 4:29 Come, see a man, who told me all things that ever I did: can this be the Christ?

    She did not mean that Jesus told her of every singular thing she did in life from birth through childhood and so forth. That ‘all’ does not mean everything.

    John 7:21 21 Jesus answered and said unto them, I did one work, and ye all marvel because thereof.

    Not everyone who ever lived marveled.

    John 8 2 And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.

    I wasn’t there, were you? Therefore all doesn’t mean everybody who ever lived.

    John 11 48 If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.

    The Pharisee who said this wasn’t thinking of you or the billions in China when he said ‘all’.

    All doesn’t have to mean everybody who ever lived. That is a theological construct based on a certain interpretation scheme, and not gospel truth.

    So all men do not know who Jesus is, and that is plainly put forth in the Scriptures. 1 Cor 2 :8 plainly says that IF they had known who Jesus was they would NOT have put Him to death. [“which none of the rulers of this world hath known: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory”] They did not think He was the Lord of Glory.

    So my point still stands:

    Only those whom the Spirit reveals the truth to know in their hearts the veracity of the Gospel.

    The rest think it foolishness.

    [1 Cor 1] 17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not in wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made void. 18 For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God.

    Next.
    Ben is simply making assertions of his own imaginings here.
    "My own imaginings"? Every assertion I have made has been backed by Scripture. How may Scripture references were in your last several posts??? On a theology debate, it is desireable to not become personal, but rather to contend with Scripture...


    It is not personal at all. You have not backed up every assertion with Scripture. You misused and maligned Scripture at times, but you have not backed up your assertions with the Word. You can’t because they are false. [Now that is an assertion of mine.]

    He then says: He completely ignored my question to him about Acts 4.
    I don't remember you asking about Acts chapter 4 verses 27-30. Where in that passage does it say that God predestined Pilate's and Herod's eternity? It seems that Jesus WAS PREDESTINED, but Pilate and Herod were convenient. God used them, but did not create their bent. What of Mary? Was She commanded to be righteous? No. God chose the time and place, Mary was convenient. Had God chosen a different time, or place, or had Mary not been righteous, He would have chosen a different vessel for Christ's birth...



    But of course he still has not answered my comments on Acts 4. How hard is it to scroll back and read yesterday’s posts? His ‘answer’ has nothing to do with my question. We are not talking about Herod’s or Pilate’s eternity but about predestination and free will. Can God predestine an act without violating a man’s free will? Yes, as shown by the Jews and the rulers doing just what God’s power and will determined before would be done:

    Acts 4 26 The kings of the earth set themselves in array, And the rulers were gathered together, Against the Lord, and against his Anointed: 27 for of a truth in this city against thy holy Servant Jesus, whom thou didst anoint, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, were gathered together, 28 to do whatsoever thy hand and thy council foreordained to come to pass.

    I asked if these who were gathered freely do what God had foreordained they would do or not? The Bible tells me that God can foreordain men’s choices without violating their freewill. If you say God violated their free will, well then there goes your argument about free will. The Arminianist position isn’t reality. God’s predestination of His elect does not violate the elect’s free will. That is a straw man attack on the truth.

    Next. He has been rude like that to me in the past, and he continues to be. I wish he would stop it. I do not think it is a proper way to deal with others, and I know he doesn't like it when others treat him that way. So therefore it is sin and he should stop it, repent of it and not do it anymore.
    Kindly do not make the discussions personal. I have not, nor will I ever, attack anyone on a personal level. I do not believe I have been rude. If I ever appear so, then I promptly and humbly apologise. I contend for Scripture, specifically "OSNAS"; in responding to posts, I often make comments on other aspects of "OSAS", as they occur to me. If I am wrong on Scriptural points, prove me so with Scripture---I assure you I will listen.


    Ben makes it personal when he blatantly ascribes doctrine to me that I do not hold. As he does not hold every possible Arminianist doctrine, I need not hold every doctrine he thinks is Calvinistic. He should not ascribe to me what I have not revealed as mine. AS I ASKED HIM, would it be fair to Ben if I ascribed a doctrine that says we must get born again after every sin? But some Arminianist hold that doctrine, so why shouldn’t I say Ben believes that? But that is the similar thing he does to me on every thread on this website where we have interacted.
    He says “I apologize” but then he just keeps on doing it. If you want to email me Ben and we can discuss this more, do so at [email protected]. But try and understand that there are real live people debating you and not All-One-Belief-Roboton-Calvinites behind the screen. You can couch your response as not to make it seem like the person you are answering is the one that holds that belief you are ascribing. It takes little work and is a proper way to treat people.

    Next.
    But Ben is not sure what OSAS believes about free will. First He says this: The very nature of "OSAS" is to deny free will.
    Then he says this: By definition, he-who-believes-in-OSAS, also believes free will has limits. How can we believe free will has limits when we deny it?
    I'm very pleased to hear that. Then you recognize that man has free will to either accept Jesus, or reject Him. From the start, to the finish. We are in agreement on "OSNAS". Free will has no limits...


    What is wrong Ben with your logic skills? Are you very pleased to hear that Ben does not know what OSAS believes about free will? That is what I said.
    Nothing in the above quote actually says anything about what I believe or about what Calvinism believes. Your answer does not match what I was saying. You contradicted yourself in your assertions and I was pointing that out to you.
    OSAS does not deny free will. It never has. Free will has limits. Everyone knows that. Read Romans 7:

    15 For that which I do I know not: for not what I would, that do I practise; but what I hate, that I do. 16 But if what I would not, that I do, I consent unto the law that it is good. 17 So now it is no more I that do it, but sin which dwelleth in me. 18 For I know that in me, that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me, but to do that which is good is not. 19 For the good which I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I practise. 20 But if what I would not, that I do, it is no more I that do it, but sin which dwelleth in me. 21 I find then the law, that, to me who would do good, evil is present. 22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23 but I see a different law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity under the law of sin which is in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me out of the body of this death? 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then I of myself with the mind, indeed, serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

    end part one,mike
     
  20. mjwhite

    mjwhite Member

    210
    +0
    Dear all,

    part two


    Next.
    So how is it that John 3:16 means that God loved everybody and showed it by sending Jesus, while all the while knowing only the predestined elect would be saved?
    It's a question of responsibility. Salvation is NOT God-directed, it is "free will". So that God's INTENT allowed only one option for Him---to create mankind, knowing that Adam would fall, to purpose from the beginning Jesus as the "propitiation for the fallen", to make believing the responsibility of each man. This is the application of His sovereignty that He has chosen, MUST have chosen because of His desire (the "FELLOWSHIP/ABIDING" thing)...



    Again you fail to answer the question asked. It says For God so loved, that He sent Jesus. We are not talking about the people’s responsibility at all here. But I will address that point now that you brought it up. But first address my point. God knew that when He made the world of all those Billions who would never believe and go to hell and He made it anyway. You and Arminians say that the ‘love’ in John 3:16 means all those billions who God knew was going to hell. How is it that the sending of Jesus was a demonstration of God’s love for them when He knew they would reject Jesus? Answer the question, don’t make up answers to questions not asked. Focus.

    As to your assertion, first, you said you always back up them with Scripture. You did not, so you shouldn’t make such claims. If you say God MUST have done it they way He did because of His desire for the fellowship/abiding thing, how is it He loves the nonelect, since He made the world knowing these would never enter into the fellowship/abiding thing with Him? I agree with your idea that the nonelect perish due to their own lack of responsible choices but I call it their SIN, not their failure to believe. Before they failed to believe they were already condemned. Besides there are millions upon millions that never even heard the gospel. They failed to be responsible because they sinned, violating the measure of revelation they had, even their own consciences. It is for that sin they are condemned. Jesus’ coming was not to bring condemnation. John 3: 17 For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through him. AND Romans 3: 19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it speaketh to them that are under the law; that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may be brought under the judgment of God:.

    The law condemns, Christ brings life. Those not under grace are under law and are condemned for their failure to obey it in every point. James 2: 10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is become guilty of all. AND Romans 2: 12 For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without the law: and as many as have sinned under the law shall be judged by the law; 13 for not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified: So man must keep the whole law or be condemned. No man does, all are condemned. Jesus’ coming had no need to condemn already condemned men, but to bring life to His elect.

    Next.
    Did you think that you yourself Ben received Jesus as Lord and Savior and then believed on Him?
    "Receiving Jesus", "believing on Jesus", "Born Again", "Lord-and-Savior", "abiding-in-Him", are all identically the same. Mere "belief-as-in-head-knowledge" is not salvation (Jms1:19). It's a special KIND of belief, the belief that receives Him AS Lord AND Savior. Which IS "Born Again". Which IS "Abiding in Him". Which IS saved...


    Which is eternal life. Which is OSAS.

    But earlier Ben said:
    No. The Jews did not believe He was the Messiah, because they had not received Him. Because Peter had received JESUS as his LORD and SAVIOR, Peter believed He was the Messiah. It's not a "catch-22", it's a "receive-Him, or NOT".


    That is why I asked him. His response is to say they all mean the same thing. That makes his earlier statements nonsense. If believing in Him and receiving Him are the same thing then why does Ben use the word ‘because’? [see above]. And if believing and receiving are the same thing, then why does Ben say because Peter received Jesus as His Lord and Savior he believed on Him? Why did he do it I ask and Ben says because he did it. Like I said, circular.

    So that leaves my question unanswered. Why do people choose to believe on Jesus [and become one of the elect] and others do not/ No Arminianist has given any reasonable answer to that question.

    Next.
    Faith comes first and in this order: First we need to hear with the ears of the head in order to have cognitive knowledge of the truth. But head knowledge doesn't save. [See my former post, or read Romans 10:13-19 AND 1ST Cor. 1:16 Huh??? and chap. 2:6-10. The MYSTERY, predestined from the BEGINNING of TIME, is JESUS-IN-YOU (Col1:27) God has to reveal the truth to our hearts. Those who know this truth in their hearts confess it and are saved [Rom. 10:9-10] So first we hear the gospel, then the Spirit enlightens us, and then we confess His name and we are saved. Belief comes before our act of faith [the confession of Jesus]
    God's truth is revealed to ALL MEN. He calls all men. He died for all men. ALL MEN are enlightened. Some receive Jesus, some reject Him (love sin more).


    Ben is making assertions again and despite his claim that he always backs them up with scripture and says I don’t use any, we can see that is a false claim. He didn’t use any scripture at all.

    God’s truth is not revealed to all men, which is plain by 1 Cor 1:18 [verse 16 above rightfully gets a huh??? From Ben] Verse 18 For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God. If they knew it as truth, it wouldn’t be foolishness to them. See 1st Cor. 1: 1 For seeing that in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom knew not God, it was God's good pleasure through the foolishness of the preaching to save them that believe. 22 Seeing that Jews ask for signs, and Greeks seek after wisdom: 23 but we preach Christ crucified, unto Jews a stumblingblock, and unto Gentiles foolishness; 24 but unto them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. 26 For behold your calling, brethren, that not many wise after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: 27 but God chose the foolish things of the world, that he might put to shame them that are wise; and God chose the weak things of the world, that he might put to shame the things that are strong; 28 and the base things of the world, and the things that are despised, did God choose, yea and the things that are not, that he might bring to nought the things that are: 29 that no flesh should glory before God.

    Ben says God calls all, but the Scriptures say different. To some the Gospel is foolishness or a stumbling block, but to those called Christ is both the power of God and the wisdom of God. And here in these verses is the truth behind the elect. Those chosen by God are NOT those He foreknows will choose Him but those chosen by God are stated above. And why, so that no flesh will glorify before Him. Salvation is not man driven as Ben says but God driven. He saves as He chooses. He is the Savior, he is God His will is supreme so as that no flesh could ever rightfully boast before Him.

    That is why I ask Arminianists why some choose to believe and others do not. Because they do not give God His due glory but boast in their own salvation. How do they boast? Let them answer my question and their boasting will be evident for all.

    Ben next is confused.
    The point is that Ben agrees with the 1st tenet of Arminianism. So that means that only the predestined elect can be saved.
    HUH???
    quote:
    1.God has decreed to save through Jesus Christ those of the fallen and sinful race who through the grace of the Holy Spirit believe in him, but leaves in sin the incorrigible and unbelieving. (In other words predestination is said to be conditioned by God's foreknowledge of who would respond to the gospel)
    Those who choose to believe become God's chosen (see Matt22:1-14, esp14). Those who disbelieve, He leaves in their sin. Those who choose to become His sheep (Jn10:9) He predestines ONLY to become CHRISTLIKE, predestination founded SOLELY on their SURRENDER and WILLINGNESS to follow Him…


    The elect as plainly shown in the Arminian doctrine above are predestined, hence the term predestined elect. Ben said he fully agreed with that statement when he laid it out before us all. Now Ben is retreating from that and changing his tune. He changes from predestined elect to predestined Christlikeness.

    Just answer the question Ben. Does God foreknow who the elect are or not? If you do then you have agreed again with the above Arminianist statement. And my statement of you is true that Ben believes only the predestined elect can be saved. If you do not, then you are saying God doesn’t know who the elect will be, BUT then how can he predestine them to Christlikeness?

    Next.
    How does sending Jesus do anything for them, since the purpose of the cross is for the remission of sins and He knew theirs would never be remitted?
    RESPONSIBILITY. For God to be JUST, they must be without excuse. They must be guilty because of their own choice. Thus, Jesus died for all men (Rm5:18,1Jn2:2), and whoever receives/believes/abides in Him, is saved---but those who reject Him, is condemned (Jn3:18)


    Bad scripture interpretation. John 3:17-18 says: 17 For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through him. 18 He that believeth on him is not judged: he that believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    When we sin we are judged already and condemned. A condemned person needs no more condemnation. Likewise their have been millions upon millions who never heard the gospel. Do they have an ‘excuse’ because of that/ If so, God’s plan is badly flawed. But God’s way is not Ben’s way. God is just when He rightly judges and condemns a person because that person has sinned. To add that condemnation needs lack of faith as well fails to deal with those who never heard the gospel.

    But Ben’s answer fails to address the question. The Point is that John 3:16 speaks of God’s love. EVEN IF Ben was right in his earlier assertion, that would not explain how God was loving the nonelect by sending Jesus. It would only explain why Christ died for them, the nonelect [to give them no excuse]. But how does it show God’s love? It doesn’t, because He doesn’t love them.

    Finally, this is not from me, or about me.
    Which is why I go to the original source. Keeps it from happening.
    Not at all. We just don't buy the same definition of sovereignty as you do.
    Bravo, Scott! God is bound by His own nature---He cannot do evil, for He is perfect good, and perfect love. He cannot be unjust, for He is perfectly just. Therefore, His own nature allows only one application of His sovereignty---He must provide salvation for all men, and then allow all men to either accept it or reject it. Rom1:20 is the embodiment for His approach---on the Day of Judgment, each man stands unjudged because of Christ's cloak-of-righteousness (washed in His blood when he RECEIVED CHRIST), or condemned because of his own chosen sin. The very existence of JUSTNESS demands free will.


    To repeat, Calvinism and free will are not incompatible. That is a straw man argument. It goes like this: Since God has already prechosen who will be saved, those elect must get saved even if it is against their free will. But That is a false argument devoid of real understanding of both what free will is and how predestination and God’s sovereignty works.

    In fact the same argument can be laid at the feet of the Arminianists: Since God knows in advance who will choose Him, only those He already knows will choose Him will in fact choose Him. Since according to God’s foreknowledge these elect must choose God they really have no other choice but to choose God. Likewise everyone else CANNOT chose God because God didn’t fore see them choosing Him, so they are locked out. They cannot choose God.

    In summary, it is God who chooses to save whom He loves, and He saves them without violating their free wills. The rest are condemned for their willful sins and think the gospel foolish.

    mike
     
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