Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Calvinism, Arminianism, and Everything in Between


Please confine your discussions of these topics to this thread.

More commentary:

Mark of the Arminian

Three-minute rebuttal


183 comments:

WatchingHISstory said...

Don

If I disagree with John Macarthur then I must be wrong. This is an argument that would offend Mr. Macarthur himself.

I don't know if you listened to the sermon by Dr. Price. I hope you did and judge for yourself. I hold to the right to passionately believe that this sermon accords to Hebrews 10:29 and in context ties in with v.26. It means that men who preach a sermon like this are in grave danger of insulting the Spirit of grace. I believe that Bellevue is experiencing the sore punishment of v. 29. And that this punishment will continue for sometime.
You would have me saying that Price, Gaines and men like them are "non-Christians, a person who is intellectually convinced that the gospel is true." No way. They are men who will stand before the Lord and have their works burned. They themselves will be saved.

I hold to the belief in the preseverance of the saints, the traditionl calvinist position. I am not ready to believe fully in the preservation of the saints.
I am not fully convinced of once saved always saved, although there is a security we have that makes it difficult to forfeit our salvation. John 15:1-7 and Gal 5:4 implies that we may be able to forfeit our salvation.

sheeplessatbbc said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ezekiel said...

Watching,

Some more rocks for your sling...Be warned however....folks around here get downright offended with the idea that one can lose his salvation. I have always been told "he never had it to begin with"....In John 15:2 he was a branch "in me" before he was broken off for a lack of fruit...

Ez 3:18-21,18:24-30,33:10-16
Heb 10:26-29,10:38-39,12:14,6:4-6
Rom 11:21-22
2 Peter 2:20-22
James 5:19-20

But then we have the idea of irresitable Grace....If it is God's will that you be saved then nothing you do can keep you from it.

I hope the line at the question desk up there is well supplied with water and snacks :)

allofgrace said...

I won't lose my salvation because it was purposed and planned in eternity (covenant of redemption), chosen in Christ, executed by the Holy Spirit in time and space (covenant of grace), sealed unto the day of redemption, kept by grace in faith to final salvation...all entirely the work of God.

Rom 8:30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

The golden, unbreakable chain of God's redemptive work. End of story.

concernedSBCer said...

Thanks AOG. Appreciate your explanation.

ezekiel said...

AOG,

While still arguing with myself, I think you see me coming around to your side of this. I think you are right. After all, he has mercy on whom He will and wrath for whom he will....Totally Sovereign. Irresistable Grace.....If it is His will it will happen.

allofgrace said...

ez,
Key word is "purpose". God performs that which He purposes..and as the scriptures say "none can stay His hand."

allofgrace said...

I should have added in between election and execution....Christ, my redeemer, paid in full for all that was necessary to bring me to glory...the propitiation of God's wrath against my sin, repentance, faith, and perseverance.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Well look at that! Did AOG just make a convert out of zeke?

allofgrace said...

Hey zeke is a student of the Word. And he rightly takes a stand against easy-believeism. The more he stays in the Word, the more God will reveal.

Lin said...

And...

Eph 1

3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. 7In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, 8which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.


11In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

Whew! Paul hardly uses periods in this chapter!

oc said...

Concerned,
You have mail.

arminius said...

ezekiel the blogger said:
If it is His will it will happen.

Paul said:
God's will is for all men to be saved. (1 Timothy 1:3,4 - This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.)

Peter said:
Some men are created only to be destroyed. (2 Peter 2:12 - But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like brute beasts, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like beasts they too will perish.)

Augustine never explained this one very well.

Lin said...

"But then we have the idea of irresitable Grace....If it is God's will that you be saved then nothing you do can keep you from it."

I have heard it explained that He will not allow you to wander too far off the narrow road.

That is one reason why I become so confused with our "Americanized' Christianity. We sometimes look at some things as blessings which really are not. If we are wandering off the narrow road we are chastized and drawn back to Him. (I know I am oversimplifying this...:o(

ezekiel said...

Kinda looks that way Nass :)

After a lot of reading, it appears a little silly that I can do anything to secure my salvation and therefore the opposit should hold true, I can't do anything to loose it. Sweet and Simple.

I am not sure where that leaves us with these alter calls and asking Jesus to come in.....I see it now as more an act of running to the Father and crying out for mercy...

Seems a better line of reasoning that if He purposes to save us, the afflictions He sends our way push us to seek His will. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, we are formed into His image. Refined?Resistance is futile, making turning away, falling away impossible. Goes all the way back to the Seed. Isaac in fact.

Esau was left out. Hated even. Could not find repentence even though he sought it with many tears.

Lin said...

This just made me think of Corrie Ten Boom who wrote that an infestation of fleas and bed bugs were a blessing sent by God in the concentration camp. The guards refused to enter the room and Corrie and her sister were free to teach and minister to the other prisoners.

Fleas...a blessing.

oc said...

You know what? Such a gift left in my hands? Nonsense! It would be squandered. That would make God unwise to give such a gift to such as me. No, God knows who we are,and what we will do. Yet He gives the gift anyway. Because it is NOT by my merit but by HIS GRACE. My salvation depends on God giving it, not me keeping it. And thank God for that!

Lin said...

"Seems a better line of reasoning that if He purposes to save us, the afflictions He sends our way push us to seek His will. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, we are formed into His image. "

The Puritans called it the Valley of Vision. Beautiful, huh?

concernedSBCer said...

lin: Isn't it amazing to be able to see God's hand in fleas? A lesson to us all.

I am always humbled when I stop long enough to see myself through God's eyes. To love enough to make the ultimate sacrifice of His child...that is truly Awesome in the real definition of the word.

ezekiel said...

Lin,

Amen! The original tough love.:)

oc said...

Concerned,

You get your mail?

allofgrace said...

Main thing is....God is a covenant God. He remembers His covenant.

concernedSBCer said...

OC: Yes, thanks. One back at you!

concernedSBCer said...

AOG: excellent reminder. Don't we wish the world took their word so seriously?

allofgrace said...

First and most important scriptural lesson....Genesis 1:1..."In the beginning, God...." All sound theology has to begin and end with God.

allofgrace said...

lin,
The problem with the "Americanized" Christianity that you spoke of is that as Americans, we've never known what it is to live under a monarchy. And God is absolute monarch. That's why, imho, Arminian theology is so popular in this country..it fits well into the American ideal of rugged individualism and the "Frank Sinatra" theology of "I did it my way"

imaresistor said...

all of grace...

You are going to make a marvelous nurse. You will nurse not only the body, but the soul as well.

Ima

ezekiel said...

Arminius,

Welcome to the discussion!

1 Peter 2:6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.

2:7 Unto you therefore which believe [he is] precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,

2:8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, [even to them] which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.

It appears Peter was at odds with Paul on this one as well.

arminius said...

Acts 16:
29 - The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas.
30 - He then brought them out and asked, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
31 - They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household."

Romans 10:
9 - That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
10 - For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

allofgrace said...

ez,
They are not at odds with each other...both speaking the truth. John Piper has written a good treatise on this subject: "Are there 2 wills in God?"

oc said...

Concerned,

Email, back at ya!

arminius said...

2 wills - perfect and imperfect?

Lin said...

"The problem with the "Americanized" Christianity that you spoke of is that as Americans, we've never known what it is to live under a monarchy. "

I never thought of that before. i.e.,Rugged individualism, self made man, etc.

What seems to be missing from our 'Americanized' Christianity is an absolute belief in the Sovereignty of God. That He somehow needs us to cooperate! What you said would fit why this is so.

Lin said...

EZ, Here is the entire prayer.

The Valley of Vision

Lord, high and holy, meek and lowly, Thou hast brought me to the valley of vision, where I live in the depths but see Thee in the heights; hemmed in by mountains of sin I behold Thy glory. Let me learn by paradox that the way down is the way up, that to be low is to be high, that the broken heart is the healed heart, that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit, that the repenting soul is the victorious soul, that to have nothing is to possess all, that to bear the cross is to wear the crown, that to give is to receive, that the valley is the place of vision. Lord, in the daytime stars can be seen from deepest wells, and the deeper the wells the brighter Thy stars shine; let me find Thy light in my darkness, Thy life in my death, Thy joy in my sorrow, Thy grace in my sin, Thy riches in my poverty, Thy glory in my valley.

arminius said...

Ezekiel 33:

10 - "Son of man, say to the house of Israel, 'This is what you are saying: "Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them. How then can we live?" '
11 - Say to them, 'As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?'

allofgrace said...

arminius,
Decretive will, and preceptive will.

arminius said...

Joshua 24:15
But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD."

Deuteronomy 11
26 - See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse-
27 - the blessing if you obey the commands of the LORD your God that I am giving you today;
28 - the curse if you disobey the commands of the LORD your God and turn from the way that I command you today by following other gods, which you have not known.

arminius said...

allofgrace said:
arminius,
Decretive will, and preceptive will.

all,

How do these compare to Ockham's 'absolute power' (potentia absoluta) and 'ordained power' (potentia ordinata)? The same, or different?

allofgrace said...

I'll just explain the two as best I can and you can judge how it compares. By precept, God commands all men everywhere to repent...He is righteous and holy and we are sinful, therefore by his precepts he has the right to demand repentance. By His eternal decree however, he has purposed to save a people out of the fallen lump of humanity through a redeemer, while passing over others. "You have hidden these things from the wise and the prudent, and have revealed them to babes. Ahh Father, for it seemed good in your sight." (my paraphrase)

Another example: By precept it was a wicked thing for the Lord of Glory to be crucified at the hands of evil men (precept), but according to His plans and purposes Christ was murdered at the hands of evil men (decree)

Amy said...

I wasn't prepared to cry tonight but what Zeke has said in his 8:17 post and the Puritan Prayer Lin posted, is beautiful and true.
Thanks for blessing me tonight you two!

arminius said...

They are very different, then. Ockham believed that once God committed to a course of action (creation) his power became limited.

If evil is part of God's plan, should we oppose it?

concernedSBCer said...

lin: Thanks. That will be up in my room, and in my Bible.

concernedSBCer said...

oc: check the mailbox

WatchingHISstory said...

ezekial
"some more rocks for your sling. . .be warned however . .folks around here get downright offended with the idea that one can loose his salvation."

Am I allowed an opinion? Are you speaking for everyone on this board with a threat? Is everyone thin skinned theologically?
AOG is very convincing and the others sound good, some maybe hypercalvinism. I'm traditional five point, simply because of point one.
Irrestible grace has a pratical result in that it causes one to experience true humility, like the publican. Resistable grace produces the kind of response I got from you. You can't have it both ways. Your attitude is the kind that is getting Bellevue in deeper trouble.

allofgrace said...

Ahh the mystery of iniquity. Men have endeavored for centuries to explain the presence of evil, but as for your question we have Job...God commended Job because he "eschewed evil"...so yes..we should oppose evil...flee from it...be ignorant concerning it, etc.

allofgrace said...

Actually irresitable grace is not the best terminology for the doctrine...I prefer "effectual" grace. God's saving grace is effectual in that it produces what it's intent is, without fail.

ezekiel said...

Lin,

Great prayer! Thanks for sharing it.

arminius said...

Theodicy - the problem of evil. Predestination...

There is much food for thought here.

I wish we could have settled the Calvinist/Arminian debate tonight, but we weren't successful. The important thing is to never believe we have reached the plateau of knowledge and understanding. God is infinite, we are finite. His ways are higher than our ways, and we'd better get used to it.

In the meantime,

Acts 17:30
In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.

Matthew 11
28 - "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
29 - Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.


Why would God give this command and invitation if it weren't possible for everyone to respond? Wouldn't that be cruel?

(offline)

WatchingHISstory said...

Ezekial
"He never had it to begin with"

That statement hinders me from believing in once saved always saved. If he never had it to begin with then you can't convince me that you have it now. That is the belief in eternal insecurity. Just wait and see if you are saved.
Am I allowed to work through this idea to know for myself? Or should I just take your word for it. Let us reason together.

Amy said...

I often hear people argue about election vs. free will. I think there could be a balance between being elected and choosing the Grace we come to see feel is irresistible. If you just believed in election, would that mean you aren't obligated to share God's gift of salvation because if someone is already chosen and you can't change what God has already established. I really have such a finite mind, I can't begin to comprehend God's infinite mind. So I do what the scriptures tell me about sharing the Gospel and praying for ways I can share the light of Christ in a hurting world.

If this doesn't make sense I understand, and welcome any response that will help me understand pre destination.

Astounded said...

arminius said...

Why would God give this command and invitation if it weren't possible for everyone to respond? Wouldn't that be cruel?

Furthermore, if grace is solely handed out by God, why the need for The Bible, the Church, or even Jesus? Unless this is all just a cruel game being played by an omnipotent being for his sole enjoyment.

God's will for man was to allow him choice, as evidenced by placing the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. That choice extends to man choosing whether or not to follow God.

Remember, God gave man the precious gift of a brain. He intended for man to use it.

allofgrace said...

watching,
somehow in reading your last posts, I feel you may have misunderstood what ezekiel was saying...actually he was expressing that he has wrangled with the same issue, just as you are. He is still working through it as you are as well...I only speak for myself, but I don't think anyone here is demanding that you agree with anyone's view. I too, wrangled with that issue and many others...it is in that wrestling with scripture that we learn and grow. As I said earlier, Ezekiel is a student of the Word, and asks honest and sincere questions from what he sees in it...just as you do.

ezekiel said...

Watching,

I have reread everything I wrote to you and can't find the cause of my offense. I was agreeing with your opinion and even supporting you with some verses I ran across when I found myself asking the same questions You appear to.

I have gradually come around to a more elect/predestined thought process having studied the OT and seeing just how Holy and Powerful God is. God is sovereign.

Please take what ever I said that shows "attitude" that you object to and ignore it. Better yet, show me what it was and I will delete it. Please accept my appology.

allofgrace said...

amy,
First off, God never tells us to determine anyone's election but our own.."make your calling and election sure". Secondly we know this from scripture...God has chosen "through the foolishness of preaching to save them which believe." Election doesn't equal salvation...election is unto salvation...through the appointed means...namely the preaching of the gospel..evangelism..that is how He saves His elect.

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...

I have gradually come around to a more elect/predestined thought process having studied the OT and seeing just how Holy and Powerful God is. God is sovereign.

What is your gut feeling as to who Jesus is?

oc said...

concerned,

Your mailbox awaits.

ezekiel said...

Astounded,

John 1. No gut feelings involved. He is the atoning sacrifice for my sins that reconciled me to God.

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...

John 1. No gut feelings involved. He is the atoning sacrifice for my sins that reconciled me to God.

Your 10:23 post you said:

I have gradually come around to a more elect/predestined thought process having studied the OT and seeing just how Holy and Powerful God is. God is sovereign.

If God has already elected you, then is Jesus just God's justification for damning those that are not elected?

Your answer that he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins really comes up short. JESUS IS GOD! Does this not put into perspective why he came to earth in human form? He endured humanly unimaginable torture to redeem mankind from sin.

Maybe I'm just dumb, but that seems like a whole lot of trouble to go through for redeeming only a select number.

ezekiel said...

Astounded,

You are far from dumb:) I am just trying to make it all fit. Something that better men have tried and failed I guess. If, as Arminius says, it is God's will that all men be saved then who goes to hell in Rev?

Romans 9:1 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,

9:2 That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.

9:3 For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh:

9:4 Who are Israelites; to whom [pertaineth] the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service [of God], and the promises;

9:5 Whose [are] the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ [came], who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.

9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they [are] not all Israel, which are of Israel:

9:7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, [are they] all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.

9:8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these [are] not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.

9:9 For this [is] the word of promise, At this time will I come, and Sara shall have a son.

9:10 And not only [this]; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, [even] by our father Isaac;

9:11 (For [the children] being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;)

9:12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger.

9:13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

9:14 What shall we say then? [Is there] unrighteousness with God? God forbid.

9:15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.

9:16 So then [it is] not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

9:17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.

9:18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will [have mercy], and whom he will he hardeneth.

9:19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will?

9:20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed [it], Why hast thou made me thus?

9:21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?


9:22 [What] if God, willing to shew [his] wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:

9:23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,

9:24 Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?

9:25 As he saith also in Osee, I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved.

9:26 And it shall come to pass, [that] in the place where it was said unto them, Ye [are] not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God.

9:27 Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved:

9:28 For he will finish the work, and cut [it] short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth.

9:29 And as Esaias said before, Except the Lord of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we had been as Sodoma, and been made like unto Gomorrha.

9:30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.

9:31 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.

9:32 Wherefore? Because [they sought it] not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone;

9:33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Astounded said...

I guess I interpret the word "elect" differently. To be elected, one must first vie for election. It is true that if I do not run for mayor of Memphis, I will not be the "elected one" to be mayor.

God "hated" Esau, not because he made Esau to be hated but because of the choices that Esau made. In other words, Esau, chose not to run for election.

Now, the struggle I have involves the ones that lived and died before Jesus (Esau included). Maybe God did elect those chosen ones to be with Him while others were not. Those "unelected" may have been mere tools of God to fulfill his deeds. Which opens deeper crevasses such as whether these Old Testament "unelected" actually possessed souls (it gets really convoluted depending on the scholars you read).

I think all of this changed with the first coming of Jesus. At that time, I believe God opened the doors of salvation to all mankind. If you read the red words of the the New Testament, Jesus says such.

You must take into account the dynamics of the Old Testiment. You had human-demon inbred beings on earth (maybe the reason for the great flood?).

westtnbarrister said...

All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. John 6:37 (emphasis mine)

No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:44 (emphasis mine)

These two verses combine to demonstrate the sovereignty of God in salvation. God does the drawing of men unto Himself. “Whosoever will” may come to the Father, but only those enabled by the Father will actually come. The Father has predestined those who would be saved (Romans 8:29-30, Ephesians 1:3-6). And he predestined according to His good pleasure(Ephesians 1:9-11).

junk99mail said...

Question...
Are any of the regulars here, or any lurkers, current or former students or faculty at Mid-America seminary? Or know anyone well who is? I am curious to know what the general feeling there is about recent events at Bellevue, from worship/music style changes, to Gaines' preaching, to decisions made, to issues of integrity, to church growth practices, to church government, etc. I suspect that there would be varied opinions among the students and perhaps even the faculty (as evidenced by differences within the seminary's trustees after Dr. Spradlin's remarks), both among those who attend Bellevue and those who don't. I know that the controversy at Germantown Baptist was discussed and debated a good bit there, and I expect the same is true of the issues facing Bellevue, but I haven't heard much specifically, other than Dr. Spradlin's statements and the events that occured with the trustees related to that. Knowing the history of mutual support of BBC and the seminary, and the respect shown between Dr. Allison (the founding president) and Dr. Rogers, I'd really like to know if there is one prevalent opinion at the seminary, or if it has been as controversial there as it has been within the BBC membership. Does anyone have any direct knowledge or insight into this?

Astounded said...

westtnbarrister

I do not follow your statement. Are you saying that God purposely does not enable certain persons to come to Him? The John 44 verse refers to the Holy Spirit which convicts all people to come to God.

If one believes that God only predestines a select number of people to be with Him, then there are several passages in the Bible the stand in dispute. If God has enabled all mankind to be elected, and left open the choice to be worthy of election to the individual, then all passages of the Bible are in Harmony.

ezekiel said...

Astounded,

"God "hated" Esau, not because he made Esau to be hated but because of the choices that Esau made. In other words, Esau, chose not to run for election."

That is not the way I read it. I read it as Esaus' fate being determined from the womb, just as he knows us from the womb. That is the basis for the vessel of mercy and wrath analogy that follows the original statement. I will look at it again.

The idea of running for election really scares me. What if I lose the election? I am more comfortable throwing myself at His feet and crying out for mercy.

"You must take into account the dynamics of the Old Testiment. You had human-demon inbred beings on earth (maybe the reason for the great flood?)."??

I don't know where we get the humans breeding with the demons. I have not found anything in the OT that man was doing then that he is not doing now from the standpoint of sin. As I understand it, we had mans fall into an eternal state of sin and seperation from God.

Abiding in Jesus and Jesus abiding in us is the only way to be reconciled to God.

Anyway, it has been good discussing this with you. Thank you for your patience with me, that goes for everyone!

junk99mail said...

ezekiel said...
(Quoting Romans 9)
9:11 (For [the children] being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;)

Astounded said...
God "hated" Esau, not because he made Esau to be hated but because of the choices that Esau made.

junk99mail says ...
Not that I suppose to resolve this age old debate, but I just gotta ask ... Astounded ... exactly what were the choices had Esau made before he was born (Rom 9:11) that God hated?

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...

The idea of running for election really scares me. What if I lose the election? I am more comfortable throwing myself at His feet and crying out for mercy.

If you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, then you win the election.

I don't know where we get the humans breeding with the demons. I have not found anything in the OT that man was doing then that he is not doing now from the standpoint of sin. As I understand it, we had mans fall into an eternal state of sin and seperation from God.

If you read Genesis 6, you will see how the demon/human half breeds were introduced to Earth.

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...

Abiding in Jesus and Jesus abiding in us is the only way to be reconciled to God.

But if you are not one of the "elect" what good is this going to do?

Of course we could follow the old Puritan ethic. If I act like one of the elect then I must be one of the elect. I show my piousness in church so I must be one of the God's children. I don't buy it.

westtnbarrister said...

John 6:37 means that God leads to faith all whom He plans to redeem. The redemption of the elect is certain. Only those drawn by the Father will come to Christ. The Son will accept anyone who truly believes.

In verse 44 Jesus taught that no one can respond positively to His invitation apart from the Father's work of drawing the individual to Jesus. The heart is naturally hard and will not accept God's invitation, unless a special work of God's grace takes place. The Bible also teaches that faith is a gift from God.

Also note John 6:65
And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

That verse means it is impossible for anyone to come to Christ without the enabling call of Christ. The sinner's moral inability to choose Christ must be overcome by the gracious and sovereign power of the Spirit.

ezekiel said...

astounded,

Where is the demon? All I see is the sons of God and the daughters of men.

ezekiel said...

Astounded,

"Of course we could follow the old Puritan ethic. If I act like one of the elect then I must be one of the elect. I show my piousness in church so I must be one of the God's children. I don't buy it."

I am not selling it. I am reading it and trying to understand it. For whatever it is worth, showing anything in church probably won't profit one anything. Jesus looks at the heart.

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...
astounded,

Where is the demon? All I see is the sons of God and the daughters of men.


The sons of God are the demons, the daughters of men are the humans.

The product of the cross breeding are the Nephilim

Astounded said...

Jesus looks at the heart.

Why would Jesus need to look? He should already know who has been elected.

allofgrace said...

No one is "worthy" of election...if they were then it would no longer be grace but of works..the "worthiness" of the individual..the Bible is quite clear that none are deserving of salvation.

As for Esau, the scripture states plainly that before the 2 were born, or had done anything right or wrong, God made a distinction between them, which is His sovereign perogative. It is God who makes the distinction between one person and another. "there are none who understand" which shoots down the idea of one using his brain better than his neighbor and thus making himself to differ. It may not seem "fair" to the human mind, but man is incapable of fathoming the mind of God.

WatchingHISstory said...

ezekial AOG

Ezekial, I thought that you were accusing me of maliciously slinging stones. I apologize as well.
Your posts fill me with love for our awesome God. God is greatly distressing my heart over the situation of American fundamentalism. It's 3AM I can't sleep. I've got to go to work in the morning.

WatchingHISstory said...

We are in uncharted waters and this website is a vehicle to seek out the causes of the sins that affect Bellevue. God is searching for distressed people who cry and sigh over the abominations that are done at Bellevue.
Is God angry? In his terrible fury will he sweep a man by the hair of the head and lift him between earth and heaven and say, "go to Bellevue and see the abominations they do there. Dig a hole in an obscure area and go in to the secret chambers and see the sins they do in my house."

In these chambers they say, "the Lord seeth us not: the Lord has forsaken the earth." They have hung up a sign that says to the Holy Spirit, "Do Not Distrub"
They, along with American Fundamentalism, have devised a God of Love and a message that obligates this God of Love to save according to the will of the sinner and the preacher. They do despite to the Spirit of Grace and a sore punishment has come to them.

charis said...

As the serpent in the wilderness was lifted up, so must the Son of Man be lifted up and draw all men to Himself. (paraphrase- I'm too tired to look it up right now, but I can't sleep either)

Jerusalem, How I longed to gather you as a hen gathers her chicks, but you would not.

Harden not your hearts..


I am NOT an advocate of easy-believism, "pray this prayer and ask Jesus in your heart and you'll be saved" type evangelism. The Bible teaches that Jesus is LORD and Master. "Not all who say to Me Lord, Lord shall enter the kingdom of heaven..." Salvation is not something that you can just "name-and-claim-it" but instead a work of God. Be born again. A new creature. A child of the King, adopted, regenerated, a covenant partner. I didn't work at being born. LOL! Somebody else did that for me. However, I did resist my spiritual birth for quite a while, preferring my pig-pen of sin, knuckles turning white every time I heard a gospel invitation. I said, "no, no, no, not now, maybe later... I CAN'T, (WON'T) forgive and WON'T forsake my favorite sin." The Lord drew me, that was His doing. I could care less about the Lord until He did that.

That being said, the Bible spends a LOT of time warning and telling us our our responsibity. Could I have said NO long enough to reject the drawing of the Spirit? I don't know for sure, because I didn't. I hear stories told of people who were under conviction and said No. I know someone in particular that it seems it might have been their choice to say no, although I saw conviction on their face, and they had asked questions you don't ask unless you're being drawn by the Spirit.

I know that I cannot fathom the ways of the Lord. I certainly wouldn't have chosen to allow the holocaust, among many other things. Who can understand the ways of the Lord? He's God, and we're not.

Is it not possible that God in His sovereignty can allow His creation to "choose whom he will serve" and still be sovereign and omnicient (sp), knowing the end from the beginning? Could He be powerful enough to preserve His Book? Is He mighty enough to keep those who are His?

Oh, that our hearts would burn within us as He opens His Word to us!

WatchingHISstory said...

charis

what a testimony! "I didn't choose to be born LOL somebody else did it for me."

I too am tired but your wonder post lifts my heart and I'm off to work with renewed strength!

Thanks, may you be rested

WatchingHISstory said...

charis

wonderFUL post

Amy said...

I am catching up on last night's posts and I have another election question.
In God's infinite wisdom He has always known who will be with him for eternity. We also have free will. So when we receive the grace offered to all people, does that make us the elected and chosen?

oc said...

Amy,
I think you're right.

Amy said...

oc

REALLY!!! :)

I am just glad someone understood me.

BTW, I think you mentioned one time you went to a Baptist University. Which one?

oc said...

Amy,
Hardin-Simmons University, in Abilene, Texas. Batchelor degree in Bible, minor in psych and greek.

Come, LORD Jesus! said...

II Timothy 2:19a
"Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The LORD knoweth them that are His."

Isaiah 55:8,9
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith The LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts."

Stephen and Bonita Ann Richie

Living Hope In Jesus
www.livinghopeinjesus.com

arminius said...

...but we have the mind of Christ.

What a blessing to observe Christians exploring the mysteries of God together!

amy said...
In God's infinite wisdom He has always known who will be with him for eternity. We also have free will. So when we receive the grace offered to all people, does that make us the elected and chosen?


The term 'election' is not exclusive to Calvinism.

Some believe that God peered through the corridors of time to see who would profess faith in Christ, and these are the elect. This 'Arminian election' is no more satisfying than unconditional election.

charlie fox said...

charis said...
I am NOT an advocate of easy-believism, "pray this prayer and ask Jesus in your heart and you'll be saved" type evangelism.

REPLY:
Then you don't accept Romans 10:8-10???
Romans 10:8-10
8But what does it say? "The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,"[a] that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: 9That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

arminius said...

John 6:
44 "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day.
45 It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me.

westtn said:
In verse 44 Jesus taught that no one can respond positively to His invitation apart from the Father's work of drawing the individual to Jesus. The heart is naturally hard and will not accept God's invitation, unless a special work of God's grace takes place.


I've always been thankful for John 6.

The word translated as 'draw' is helkuo which literally means "to drag off".

Verse 44 says that no one comes to Jesus unless God drags them. (Can anyone relate?)

Verse 45 that sinners come to Jesus by listening to the Father.

It seems like the teaching ministry of God through His word is the way people are "dragged" to Jesus.

Where is the effectual call in John 6?

The Bible also teaches that faith is a gift from God.

Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.

Amy said...

oc

I graduated from Baylor BS in Nursing!!My two religion classes where two of the hardest classes I took.

charlie fox said...

If I am to accept that GOD has elected some and not others, then I might as well rip Philippians 2:9-11 and John 3:16 right out of my Bible.

oc said...

Amy,

At my alma mater, Bible degrees were the killer at the school. They were not kidding around, you were either very serious and ready to give everything, or major in something, anything, else. That's why it means something to me, it was not 'given', I had to earn it. And it was at a high price...

Mrs. C said...

Charlie,
I have a hard time believing that if someone wants to be saved, that God will not save them because they are not part of the chosen few. I firmly believe as Dr Rogers taught that "whosoever will" is a valid argument. God in his infinite knowledge already knows those who will and those who will not accept his Son, but that does not in any way say that there are a preselected few who are only given the opportunity. This would be devastating to a child who wanted to be saved and was told he might not be able to because he may not be one of the "elect". Scripture out of context is something we are dealing with at BBC right now. Someone explain to me how this view of Calvinism is not error?

Amy said...

oc

I remember thinking OT/NT (that's what I took) would be a snap because I had been to church all my life. What a surprise!
Yes, oc, you worked very hard for your degree.

charlie fox said...

mrs c,

AMEN & AMEN!!!!!!!!

concernedSBCer said...

I have struggled with this for a long time. I think that John 3:16 is just as valid as John 6:65. The Bible is God's inerrant Word. I think Amy comes the closest to expressing what I have understood when she said: "In God's infinite wisdom He has always known who will be with him for eternity. We also have free will. So when we receive the grace offered to all people, does that make us the elected and chosen?" I do think Jesus came for all, yet many hardened their hearts to the drawing. God knows this because He is omniscient. Maybe this is too simple for me to think, but maybe this also falls into the "some things I just can't understand" catagory. Regardless, it would seem to me that we have a job to do. Scripture tells us to "Go" and tells us how to live. That is our responsibility, whether we are chosen, elected, or have decided on our own. It seems to me the end result would be the same: To live our lives in obedience to our Savior.

arminius said...

Calvinists did not corner the market on election. It is unquestionably a biblical doctrine, but one that is shrouded in mystery. To deny that there is a doctrine of election in the Bible would be to deny God's Word itself.

As I stated earlier, some believe God elects by 'foreseen faith'. Not credible.

Others believe God chose His people, the church, but not the individuals who compose it. Sounds nice, but God's choice of Jacob over Esau was as personal as you can get.

Still others say that God elects some to special service, just like Jesus chose 12 to be apostles. In their minds, election has nothing to do with salvation. However Paul told the Thessalonians to be thankful, "because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth." (2 Th 2:13b)

Election is in the Bible, and definitely involves salvation. It's a mystery, though.

Don't reject scripture just to get rid of the Calvinists. Election doesn't support their position any more than it supports the Arminians (or mine).

Come, LORD Jesus! said...

Charis is not saying that the scripture in Romans 10 is not to be believed but instead is validating the scripture when the scripture refers to believing in one's "heart" contained in verses 8, 9, and 10.

Easy believism teaches a mere quoting of a "prayer" in order to receive salvation. The quotes come from one's mouth but so many are quoting from their mouths that which they do NOT believe in their hearts. A person lives out what they believe in their heart.

I John 4:1-3 tells us "Beloved, believe NOT every spirit, but TRY the SPIRITS whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Herby know ye the SPIRIT of God; Every SPIRIT that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God; And every SPIRIT that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is NOT of God; and this is that spirit of anitichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world."

Questioning God about these scriptures several years ago brought about an answer from The Holy Ghost that pointed out that the key word in these scriptures is "spirits". He pointed out that the spirits belonging to God have The Holy Spirit and THEY LIVE OUT WHAT THEY BELIEVE IN THEIR HEARTS THUS DECLARING IN ALL THINGS THAT JESUS IS INDEED THE CHRIST AND IS THE LORD GOD ALMIGHTY ACCORDING TO THE WORD OF THE LIVING GOD. It is NOT enough to SPEAK the words "Jesus Christ is come in the flesh" for apostates, heretics, false prophets, false preachers, false teachers, false miracle-workers, etc., SAY the words but THEIR SPIRITS DENY THIS IN THEIR LIFE FOR THEIR HEARTS DO NOT BELIEVE. WE KNOW WHAT THEIR HEARTS BELIEVE BY THE LIFE THEY LIVE. Hereby we know the spirit of antichrist. Herein lies God's true children's means of testing spirits.

Oh, what a blessed morning it is indeed as we all are studying God's inerrant and infallible Word! We are drinking from Jesus' fountain and oh, how sparkling and refreshing is this Living Water!!!

Stephen and Bonita Ann Richie

Living Hope In Jesus
www.livinghopeinjesus.com

arminius said...

concerned,

That's the real question, isn't it. What are the implications of predestination? How would it affect the way we live our lives? Our personal purity? Our evangelism? Our Bible study? And most importantly, our concern for others?

Mrs. C said...

I am tired of reading this blog - this is supposed to be about the conflicts at Bellevue, instead we have theological discussions that separate the faithful. Surely there is another blog that one can carry on this devisive train of thought???

arminius said...

come lord jesus said...
Oh, what a blessed morning it is indeed as we all are studying God's inerrant and infallible Word! We are drinking from Jesus' fountain and oh, how sparkling and refreshing is this Living Water!!!


Truer words could not be spoken. How many people have died of thirst, here at the fountainside?

The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.
Revelation 22:17

arminius said...

mrs. c,

Of course, how foolish we've been.

(offline)

charlie fox said...

Try this on for size.

There IS an election. GOD votes. Satan votes. Then man votes to break the tie.

Come, LORD Jesus! said...

Why would one be tired of reading a blog that indeed IS addressing ultimately the problems at Bellevue and at so many other Churches in these last days? These things we are discussing ultimately fall in line with The LORD Jesus' Words about "the sheep and the goats".

oc said...

Concerned,

for what it's worth, I think you and Amy are right.

Piglet said...

Amy, Mrs.C,and Concerned:

I agree with all of you. Dr.Rogers helped me to understand these things very well. He knew before I was born that I would receive Him, but He didn't make my choice for me.

I remember when Dr.Rogers said that Satan and his demons know who Jesus is. It isn't just agreeing about who he is but making Him LORD that saves us.

And thank goodness "keeping" my salvation isn't up to me! Where would the peace be in that?!! My works are only evidence.

Nowhere in the Bible was anyone saved twice. And when I get to Heaven , it won't be because Satan was kind enough to not snatch me away, or because I was good enough. It will be because of God's neverending grace and His promise to me.

Praise His name!! :)

oc said...

Amy,

you got mail. :)

Mrs. C said...

clj,
I did not mean to offend anyone, but it is offensive to me to suppose that Jesus would cast out a child because s/he is not one of the "elect". This doctine is more like a Jehovah's Witness than a Baptist. It is a terrible premise and I see no where in scripture that allows for it. My own husband went forward at age 8 and was told that "he could try, but not just anyone could be saved". Do you have any idea of the kind of spiritual damage he has carried with him all his life, even after he was saved. To me this is blasphemy and makes me angry to see it espoused on this blog. We have a lot of problems at Bellevue, Calvinism is one of them and it has permeated many SBC churches. It is a source of division just like PDC. I understand that many have differing opinions of the scripture, but there is no way I will believe that there are those born that are condemned to hell forever. In the Old Testament, (pre-resurection), they were justified by faith (Hebrews 11), their names were not blotted out but by unbelief. If someone believes with their heart, they can be saved. It is by their will to be saved or not. I also have a friend who decided she did not want to be a part of anyone else controlling her life but her. Is she condemmed to hell, Yes - unless she has a change of heart and gets saved - and I believe she will. It may be a deathbed conversion, but living a life of unwillingness to be saved is her choice and her's alone. God has provided a Savior, it is up to us to decide if we want Him or not.

oc said...

Repost:

oc said...
You know what? Such a gift left in my hands? Nonsense! It would be squandered. That would make God unwise to give such a gift to such as me. No, God knows who we are,and what we will do. Yet He gives the gift anyway. Because it is NOT by my merit but by HIS GRACE. My salvation depends on God giving it, not me keeping it. And thank God for that!

8:25 PM, March 14, 2007

concernedSBCer said...

Mrs. C: It is all connected. If the "sheep" do not know what the Word says, they can be so easily deceived.

Arminius: I think it shouldn't affect how we live. We need to witness because Jesus tells us to. We need to "love our neighbor" because Jesus tells us to. (And this means with all the ramifications) And we need to "Love the Lord with all our heart, mind and soul" and this means studying his Word and seeking His Will. I think whether you believe in election or free will, it ultimately doesn't change how you act.

Okay, you can nail me now....
;)

Piglet said...

If I have to work to keep my salvation, then it becomes a works salvation.

I do what I do out of love for my Saviour, and because I know He knows what is best for me, not because I fear Hell. Doesn't that glorify God more?

Mrs. C said...

concernedSBCer said...
"Mrs. C: It is all connected. If the "sheep" do not know what the Word says, they can be so easily deceived."

I have learned much from discussions with some of the staff at Bellevue. I have been shocked a the lack of knowledge of the scriptures by those who are ordained ministers as well as staff and deacons. I agree that many have been so blinded that they do not recognize scripture out of context. The 2/25 evening sermon is a fine example. Perhaps they are deceived as you say, perhaps they choose to be blind.

Amy said...

oc,

I didn't see any email from you. I emailed you my email address to make sure.

I am going to take three boys rollerskatin. Anyone want to join me at Fun Quest Collierville? No? O.K
Log in when I get back.
Godspeed to me!

concernedSBCer said...

Mrs. C; Excellent point. Distressing point.

oc said...

Concerned,

Alright, I'll nail you...NOT.
Theologians tend to make things hard to understand.
All this stuff is not that hard. God makes things simple for my simple mind. Don't need any seminary degree or any degree to know that 'God so loved the world...' you know the rest. And you're right, we obey Jesus because He tells us to. Simple, no mystery. Sometimes we try to read more into things than is intended.
So guess what? You are right. No nails. In My Arrogant Opinion. (IMAO) Just wanted to try that! :)

Karen said...

Hello All,

I feel like I had the Black Death for the past week - Dee, if you had this, I TOTALLY feel for you.

I missed seeing Mrs. Rogers article. If you have a link to it, please email me.

karen

concernedSBCer said...

OC: YOU may get nailed, but I think you make a good point. The Bible has stood the test of time and was written for all, regardless of academic ability. I do believe there are things we can understand, that we have to study and search. I made very similar comments as several posters several years ago because I just didn't "get" a God that sat on His Throne condemming others. It's not that way at all. God is not the author of confusion; it does make logical sense. I'm all about logic.

(That's why the current leadership at BBC is driving me crazy! There's NO logic!!!)

allofgrace said...

If we've reached the point where serious, studious, passionate discussion or debate of important theological issues is considered divisive, then we've got much bigger problems than "Warrenism", etc. In fact I would say the lack of or the reluctance to enter into serious Biblical study and discussion of these things is the real source of the problems.

As one of the resident "Calvinists" here, I can assure all that Calvinists have not "infiltrated" the SBC...we've always been here...in fact the founders of this denomination and it's first Seminary were Calvinists...steeped in the Doctrines of Grace. We have just as much if not more claim to this denomination's theological heritage as anyone. Do your homework before you define "Calvinsm" as a "problem" in the SBC....just my $.02 worth.

oc said...

Concerned.
Yep! I believe in logic too. I'm not against education, but no matter how much education I have, or how much someone else has(Ph.D), the message remains the same. Plain and simple. Because I am too. And you know what? Even the most intelligent genius is and will be simple before the Lord.

So, dig dat. :)

arminius said...

mrs. c said...
I am tired of reading this blog - this is supposed to be about the conflicts at Bellevue, instead we have theological discussions that separate the faithful. Surely there is another blog that one can carry on this devisive train of thought???

10:55 AM, March 15, 2007

I did not mean to offend anyone, but it is offensive to me to suppose that Jesus would cast out a child because s/he is not one of the "elect". This doctine is more like a Jehovah's Witness than a Baptist. It is a terrible premise and I see no where in scripture that allows for it.


Mrs. C,
If that was your concern you should have said so in the first place. If anyone says that Jesus casts out children, simply ask them to produce scripture that demonstrates it. Then show them in God's Word where Jesus said Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (I don't know many children who can espouse the 5 points, either.)

I have been shocked a the lack of knowledge of the scriptures by those who are ordained ministers as well as staff and deacons.

Agreed. Do you think it might put pressure on them to learn and grow if the congregation started studying and living God's word like never before?

aslansown said...

Astounded said...
ezekiel said...
astounded,

Where is the demon? All I see is the sons of God and the daughters of men.

The sons of God are the demons, the daughters of men are the humans.

The product of the cross breeding are the Nephilim

12:50 AM, March 15, 2007


I feel it necessary to address this issue as it speaks to a lack of understanding of the nature of God and demons. In fact, I am surprised that it was allowed to go unchallenged up to this point.

Astounded, I am sure that you are repeating what you were taught concerning the Nephelim so I am not challenging you direct. Only the lack of reasoning applied to this issue.

The Nephelim were only human. They were the product not of sexual realtions between demons and women, but they were decendants of Adam and, as we find today, merely genetic aberations. Giantism is seen today all over the planet.

The problem with this teaching is a lack of understanding of the nature of demons and God himself. Demons are created beings with limited power. They were created by God to do His bidding and to serve as bearers of praise. They do not have physical (corporeal) bodies and cannot create for themselves bodies. All angelophenies in the scriptures were a product of God the Father sending his messanger and providing him with a physical body. You will never find in scripture an example of an angel physically interacting with humans and never is a mention of intermarrying or sexual relations. Demons lack the ability, as do we to create and thus they could not choose for themselves to create a body capable of procreation. To believe that demons could procreate with humans would to deny the scriptures as they explain that each kind reproduces it's own kind.
This is the error surrounding evolution in general and progressive evolution (theistic evolution) in particular.

The phrases "Sons of God" and Daughters of Men" should be taken literally. "Sons of God" refers to those that retained a knowledge of and worship of God. The phrase "Daughters of Men" refers to those outside the faith.

This teaching is referred to as "The Demon Seed Doctrine" and is similar to and mayhve it's genesis in the "Serpent Seed Doctrine" which teaches that the wife that Cain found was a
product of The Serpent having sex with Adam's daughters and in the belief of some, Eve. Both of which should be considered in error as the explanation for both could be found above.

I feel that it is important to address this issue as I feel that it demonstrates how little we actually study the scripture and come to as thorough an understanding of our Great God as possible. To believe in these doctrines is to ascribe power and ability to the enemy that he does not have. The scripture begs us to "come, let us reason, syas the Lord." I take this to mean that He wants us to apply all of our intellectual powers that He has given us to study Him (Theology)and get to know Him as deply as possible (see Hebrews 5)

arminius said...

oc said...
Theologians tend to make things hard to understand.


Yes, those theologians are the problem.

Webster defines theology as "the study of God and of God's relation to the world". Have you ever studied God in any way? Then you're a theologian. Everyone is.

Yes, those theologians are the problem.

charlie fox said...

mrs. c,

Again, I say, "AMEN & AMEN".

Tim said...

I have heard a great deal of thought on this and can no longer stay silent. I don't know if this follows any any "ism" or not. I do know that it follows Biblical doctrine.

Ok, A great deal of this thought process hinges on the following verses.

Romans 8:29-30
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

Keep in mind that in God's economy time is not a factor. Everything is seen from beginning to end. God deals in terms of eternity, while we are confined to relate to time in the same manner that we relate to spacial relationships.

So when we were are presented with the Cross, God knows the direction that we will take. God's desire is for us to cling to the Cross in it's attoning grace and mercy. Those that choose Jesus he has predestined according to fore knowledge. Those that do not are predestined according to the fore knowledge of their choice.

God choose to be the perpetuation for the sins of the entire world. We chose to accept or reject that gift of payment for the penalty of our sin, that we are born into. God chooses to accept our acceptance of him.

He chose all,
some choose Him,
those that choose Him,
He chooses them.

BTW, when someone other than Jesus (God made flesh) understands all that there is to understand of God then that man can claim to be God. It ain't gonna happen.

oc said...

mrs.c said,

I have been shocked a the lack of knowledge of the scriptures by those who are ordained ministers as well as staff and deacons.

Who are these?

concernedSBCer said...

AOG: I agree. It is my belief that you can not be protestant and not be Calvinist. The protestant reformation was an Augustinian reaction against pelegianism in the Catholic Church. That of course might be a simplification but the point remains that you can not be protestant and not be Calvinist (or in other words, Augustinian). Do not confuse Calvinism with hyper-hyper predestinarianiam.

(To go into all the history is the stuff books are made of. However, a study of church history should sufffice to show the truth of this statement.)

concernedSBCer said...

You go OC! Mail later! :)

arminius said...

charlie fox said...
Try this on for size.

There IS an election. GOD votes. Satan votes. Then man votes to break the tie.


Boy, what a perfect setup!

(arminius rubs his hands with glee...)

So Satan's vote counts as much as God's?

DON said...

If I were on staff at Bellevue...
it would delight me to no ond to see NBBCOF enaged in a swirling, tempest regarding election versus free will.

I can almost hear the laughs through my Bose speakers.

aslansown said...

Tim said:
He chose all,
some choose Him,
those that choose Him,
He chooses them.


Tim,
The logic here is circular. Which came first? You seem to indicate that salvation is an uncaused cause. Only God Himself qualifies as an uncaused cause. There is nothing outside him that exists in and of itself.
Also, this reasoning imlies that salvation is equal parts God and man. Ephesians 1 argues against this.

oc said...

arminius,

Yes, I consider myself a theologian, so to speak. But you know exactly what I'm talking about, those who would make someone's salvation a study in frustration. So getting 'cute' is just obscuring the facts. Please don't act like you don't know what I mean.

arminius said...

If I were on staff at Bellevue...
it would delight me to no ond to see NBBCOF enaged in a swirling, tempest regarding election versus free will.


Personally, I think they would be interested and feel challenged by the level of knowledge being displayed.

I can almost hear the laughs through my Bose speakers.
I never knew 'The Spy Shop' sold Bose.

Tim said...

aslanown,

Exactly! The argument is circular.

This is like trying to explain how God saw all eternity before creation. Yet he did. God created time for example (the first day and the first night). Evidently until God created time there was no measure of time.

Circular? Yes!

aslansown said...

Tim,
You missed my point. I asked which element of your tryptic came first? Does God respond to us or do we respond to a moving of The Spirit in us? Again, see Ephesians 1.

aslansown said...

offline, I hear a sammich calling.
BTW,
Anyone care to respond to my 12:15 post?

arminius said...

oc,

If someone can't say something in simple language, they don't understand it. I don't care how much education they have, they don't know what they are talking about. Perhaps that was their motivation for higher education in the first place.

Theologians are not 'those who would make someone's salvation a study in frustration.' They are people who have invested their lives in the study of our incomprehensible Lord and savior. How much richer is our faith because we can stand on the shoulders of men like Augustine, Justin, Calvin, Luther, and Spurgeon?

Mrs. C said...

arminius,
That was not my point - my point was that the blog is continually being used to debate those things that are off topic when those involved have their own blogspots where they can do their debating without the rest of us having to wade thru the tedius tit for tat of their theoligical discussions that are neither productive nor on topic. You are just debating for the sake of debating. AOG has a real nice blogspot - use it!

arminius said...

aslansown said...

I feel that it is important to address this issue as I feel that it demonstrates how little we actually study the scripture and come to as thorough an understanding of our Great God as possible. To believe in these doctrines is to ascribe power and ability to the enemy that he does not have. The scripture begs us to "come, let us reason, syas the Lord." I take this to mean that He wants us to apply all of our intellectual powers that He has given us to study Him (Theology)and get to know Him as deply as possible (see Hebrews 5)


aslans,
I don't have anything to add to your explanation, but I'll comment on your closing. Bang on the dot. Why did God give us our minds, anyway? To worship. Studying theology isn't about knowledge, it's about worshiping God.

1 Cor 13:15
So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind.

ezekiel said...

Aslansown,

"The phrases "Sons of God" and Daughters of Men" should be taken literally. "Sons of God" refers to those that retained a knowledge of and worship of God. The phrase "Daughters of Men" refers to those outside the faith."

Whew, that is the way I read it. Thanks for the clarification. MacArthur supports your contention that the Nephalim were not the offspring of the pruported mating of demons and men.

Demons being spiritual beings and Man being a physical being, just can't make a mating happen. Sound like a bad movie.

arminius said...

mrs. c,

I cannot disagree more. I have learned a lot today, more than in a month of Sundays.

Wherever two or more are gathered in Jesus' name, he is there also and I have enjoyed his presence here today. The Bible says to seek the Lord while he is near, and that's what I'm doing here.

God is speaking today, and you're missing it.

oc said...

arminius,

I think we are actually in agreement. I agree totally with paragraph 1.

Paragraph 2, however. You are right concerning those names listed by you. Contributions, indeed. But I am talking about those who want to 'show off' their 'deep learning' to fuel their pride. There are some people who care nothing about anyone else's salvation, but want to look 'spiritual' and 'theological'.
Love your enthusiasm for 'theologians', but not all of them have good intent.
Therefore, I conclude that basically, we are in agreement considering the aforementioned topic. However, not every 'theologian' is out to pursue the truth. I, personally have run across those who just want to prove something. Imagine that. (Steve Gaines).

So, what is your beef with me?

Come, LORD Jesus! said...

Dear Mrs. C.,

We are so sorry for that which happened to your husband. Oh, what a terrible thing it was that was said to him. Why would a minister preach and invite people to accept Jesus as their Savior and then turn around and tell them that they might or might not be saved depending on whether they were elect or not!!! The message of invitation to salvation and what the minister said to your husband simply do not go together!!! Flesh did not lead your husband as a child to accept Jesus as his Savior for while flesh enjoys religiousity, it desires nothing of God or Jesus. THE HOLY SPIRIT was leading your husband to Jesus. The minister sounds as though he was double-minded indeed pertaining to God's command for us to "go ye" (among other doctrinal issues!). This indeed had to be a terrible thing for your husband to deal with as a child. It would indeed be a terrible thing to deal with as an adult!!!

There is definite experience in this home with those within Pentecostal circles where it is taught that you can definitely lose your salvation. Such teachings do haunt the mind!!! As a result of being taught so much about works of the law being that which will save us (in addition to grace!), I, Bonita, have struggled for years and years with the Book of James!!! I simply cannot grasp it next to Paul's writings in Romans pertaining to law versus grace. I will continue to ask The LORD Jesus to open my eyes and understanding by His Holy Spirit in my quest to resolve His writings in James. If grace is grace, then it is no more works while indeed works do follow. Between now and the time that The Holy Ghost enlightens me to James, I will simply do as I do now and trust and believe that which I cannot fully understand. As long as God understands it all, that is sufficient for me. I walk by faith and not by sight (or my mind's total understanding!).

While I do believe that one can walk out of God's hand on their own (examples include apostates of which even Bro. Adrian Rogers said that he went to seminary with many that later became apostate to the faith), I do not believe that any man can pluck us out of Jesus' Hand.

Jesus plainly told us in John 10:27 "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow me:" Our precious LORD also says in John 6: 37 that "All that the Father giveth Me shall come to Me; and him that cometh to Me I will in no wise case out." How do we come to Jesus? The Holy Spirit draws us. Romans 8: 14 says plainly that "For as many as are led by The Spirit of God, they are the sons of God."

There is NOTHING in a human being's flesh that chooses God for our flesh is of the dust of the ground and God cursed the ground in Genesis after Adam's sin. In John 1: 12-13 we are told "But as many received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name: Which were born, not of blood, NOR OF THE WILL OF THE FLESH, NOR OF THE WILL OF MAN, BUT OF GOD."

God has left comfort for all of us when we question our salvation as a result of tormenting thoughts from the devil. He knew this would happen to us and He wrote to us in 1 John 5: 13, "These things have I written unto you that believe on The Name of The Son of God; THAT YE MAY KNOW THAT YE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE, and that ye may believe on The Name of The Son of God."

I hope this helps to comfort your heart, Mrs. C.

I do also want to share that I believe The Holy Spirit showed me several months ago in James that those who do NOT have works are to examine themselves to determine whether they are really in the faith or not. How gracious and faithful is The LORD Jesus to teach us at His feet His precious Word.

Stephen and Bonita Ann Richie

Living Hope In Jesus
www.livinghopeinjesus.com

arminius said...

oc,

No problems with you at all.

Let's just distinguish between good and bad theologians.

(offline for a time of prayer)

Tim said...

Aslansown,

Jesus was slain from the foundation of the world. God had fore knowledge that we would need a Saviour and God provided himself as a sacrafice.

Our accountability to God comes when we have knowledge of God. Nature itself bears witness to God so that even those that have not heard are without excuse. God has presented us with a choice. In the presence of eternity God knows the choice.

God is always first. He choose us so that we could chose him. It is not until we no longer rely upon our self that we are free to chose him. Does God not require that we believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths? Did Christ not say that those that deny Him before men, he would deny before the Father?

Next on the list shall we explain the Trinity. (God made flesh, prior to creation.)

If we have the Word of God, does it make sense to rely upon any of the words of men? If we rely upon the words of men are we really relying upon the Word of God.

Salvation is a gift and that gift must be accepted and received to be of any benefit.

oc said...

arminius said,

oc,

No problems with you at all.

Let's just distinguish between good and bad theologians.


REPLY: OK, the bad are those who lie.

Come, LORD Jesus! said...

Bro. Don,

You are in error. That which certain staff at Bellevue would CRINGE at would be our discussion pertaining to the elect of God.

There are the obvious reasons why they would object....but there is another reason they would object to our discussions of this morning. We are into God's Own Word this morning which PROVES we do NOT take their words over our Father's Word.

Satan HATES The Bible for it is Truth. Truth is something that certain Bellevue staff have thrown out. We really don't think they would be happy about what is happening here today on the blog. SATAN sure doesn't like it!!!

Bro. Don, it is a GLORIOUS thing that is occuring this morning!!!

ENJOY!!!

Stephen and Bonita Ann Richie

Living Hope In Jesus
www.livinghopeinjesus.com

ezekiel said...

We have heard lot of discussion concerning the "drawing" that God, through the Holy Spirit performs. How does he do this? Is it a feeling or is it through AFLICTION?

I was reading Psalms 107 this past week. If one reads it carefully, God appears to be sending storms, wilderness, darkness and different afflictions to push us to seek Him. This idea is repeated in many of the Psalms and I think it can be tracked back to the Serpents God sent to bite the Israelites in Moses day when they rebelled. There too, they were to turn their eyes to the bronze serpent that Moses was instructed to build for salvation.

Does anyone else look at affliction being sent from God to work his will?

Mrs. C....I am so sorry that you are offended at what you see as a devisive discussion. However, it appears to me that BBC is being Aflicted (Psalm 107) especially the stormy seas. Is He doing this to punish us for corporate sin or is he doing it to turn us back to Him and away from Gaines worship or Dr. Rogers worship or BBC worship? I don't think our discussion could be any more pertinate to the problems we face today. Only a turning, a revival of the WORD will save BBC. Just my opinion.

Of course, we could just keep discussing the inept handling of teenagers, finances, ordinations and whatever new affliciton comes our way. The afflictions will keep coming until the business at BBC is all about Jesus and Only about Jesus.

Again, my most sincere apology for offending you.

Mrs. C said...

ez,
You all have missed my point entirely. I am NEVER offended at the gospel, but the discussions of predestination is a disputable topic and for those of us who are not believers in Calvinist doctrine, do take offense to it. It is damaging to a lot of people and I see no reason to bog down the blog by monopolizing on it. If that is what you all want, go ahead and I will stay away. I would rather further the gospel rather than debate "election".

offline..

arminius said...

I am not a believer in 5 point Calvinism, and yet I am neither offended by it nor afraid to discuss it.

I also am aware that my knowledge of God is imperfect, and that I hold on to many erroneous beliefs. I welcome the chance to examine my beliefs against those of other God fearing Christians so that I may strengthen my faith.

charlie fox said...

arminius said...
Boy, what a perfect setup!

(arminius rubs his hands with glee...)

REPLY:

Don't rub TOO hard. You'll get blisters.

It was a only a verbal illustration.

arminius said...

Ouch! Now you tell me.

Peace, Charlie.

New BBC Open Forum said...

ATTENTION! THE THREAD TOPIC HAS CHANGED SINCE IT WAS BEING IGNORED. PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTINUE YOUR THEOLOGICAL DISCUSSIONS HERE, AND EVERYONE ELSE MOVE UP!

Thank you,

NBBCOF

arminius said...

Perhaps the words of John Calvin might be relevant:

"Let it stand, therefore, as an indubitable truth, which no engines can shake, that the mind of man is so entirely alienated from the righteousness of God, that he cannot conceive, desire, or design anything but what is wicked, distorted, foul, impure and iniquitous; that his heart is so thoroughly envenomed by sin, that it can breathe out nothing but corruption and rottenness; that if some men occasionally make a show of goodness, their mind is ever interwoven with hypocrisy and deceit, their soul inwardly bound with fetters of wickedness."

arminius said...

(offline)

Lin said...

"God's will for man was to allow him choice, as evidenced by placing the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. That choice extends to man choosing whether or not to follow God."

God knew they would 'choose' to eat the fruit. Not even Adam and Eve surprised God.

If there is ONE thing I have learned it is that EVERYTHING God does brings Him Glory.

Lin said...

Acts 16:14

And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.

cradleroll said...

I've been lurking today and find this conversation re: election vs. freewill interesting and timely.

I myself have been doing a little further study of scripture. When one studies scripture to deny either doctrine would be to deny scripture. Both points are clearly present in scripture and have been debated for many, many years.

I think the thing that bothers many people is the "double predestination theory". The thought that a loving, kind God would with purpose send people to hell. That does not "fit the mold" or who we think God is.

I don't have a clear understanding of all of this, I just trust God and I know that He knows what He is doing. I think that someday when we get to heaven we can ask Him (if it even matters then) and if He chooses to reveal "the mystery", we will all look at each other and say "duh"!

Lin said...

We have had this conversation on this blog before. And we have joked: Arminius and Calvin are probably with Christ in Glory.



Arminius wrote: Truer words could not be spoken. How many people have died of thirst, here at the fountainside?

Amen, Amen, Amen!!!!

Lin said...

AOG wrote: "As one of the resident "Calvinists" here, I can assure all that Calvinists have not "infiltrated" the SBC...we've always been here...in fact the founders of this denomination and it's first Seminary were Calvinists...steeped in the Doctrines of Grace. We have just as much if not more claim to this denomination's theological heritage as anyone. Do your homework before you define "Calvinsm" as a "problem" in the SBC....just my $.02 worth."

This is a verifiable fact. Election was believed by the early church fathers BEFORE Calvin. I hate it when we call it Calvinism!! It confuses people!!

He just 'systemized' the doctrine in his writings.

"Election" is all over scripture.

concernedSBCer said...

cradleroll: I think that is a big stumbling block for many.

concernedSBCer said...

lin: exactly. That was the point I tried to make earlier; you just did it much better! THanks!

Lin said...

"We have heard lot of discussion concerning the "drawing" that God, through the Holy Spirit performs. How does he do this? Is it a feeling or is it through AFLICTION? "

Ez, Here is just ONE example using Esau because he has been mentioned. If you read about Esau, you will see that he was blessed by God materially. What you won't see is him being disciplined by God. Yet, Jacob was disciplined by God quite a bit.

Think of the Prophets. Was it a blessing to wear a yoke around? Go naked? Lay on your side for a year? Marry a prostitute? We could go on and on....


As I mentioned last night: Fleas in a concentration camp were a big blessing to Corrie Ten Boom. Yet, she was aflicted.

EZ, thanks for bringing this up. What could we be missing because we are lamenting the aflictions when they really are a blessing as God draws us near.

Lin said...

Nass, your post headings are hysterical! I love the Sacred Sandwich!!

ezekiel said...

lin,

2 Sam 7:14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:

Sounds like afliciton to me. Israel as a nation is a good example as well. They were aflicted.

junk99mail said...

My thought for the moment ... I think some additional study of the meaning of the word "foreknow" (proginosko, Prognosis) (Romans 8:29, 1 Peter 1:2) would be helpful for this discussion, particularly the specific objects of God's foreknowledge.

allofgrace said...

Foreknowledge always has to do with people...not events.."those He foreknew"....as relationally, intimately..in other words..foreloved.

arminius said...

proginosko, prognosis
The verb means "to know in advance," and in the NT it refers to God's foreknowledge as election of his people (Rom. 8:29,; 11:2) or of Christ (1 Pet. 1:20), or to the advance knowledge that believers have by prophecy (2 Pet. 3:17). Another possible meaning is "to know before the time of speaking," as in Acts 26:5. The noun is used by the LXX in Jdt. 9:6 for God's predeterminative foreknowledge and in Jdt. 11:19 for prohetic forknowledge; Justin uses it similarly in Dialogue with Trypho, 92.5, 39.2.

(from the Theological Dictionary of the New Testament)

junk99mail said...

And so, Allofgrace and Arminius, what shall we conclude about the relation of foreknowlede to election? When someone says that God made His choice (election) of someone on the basis of his foreknowledge of that person's choice to believe in Jesus, does that fit with the biblical use of the word "foreknow"?

allofgrace said...

Not in my humble opinion.

arminius said...

junk99mail,

I wish I could say yes, but Arminian election isn't convincing to me. It's like betting on a ball game you prerecorded.

Election unto salvation is biblical. So is making a choice to follow God. Since the Bible doesn't contradict itself, I must not have all the knowledge I need to understand this seeming contradiction.

If I'm going to defend Calvinism (which I'm not), the burden of proof is on me to validate the 5 points. (I personally believe it falls short on the very first one, total inability.)

If I'm going to defend Arminianism (which I'm not), I need to demonstrate that man can lose his salvation. I can't do that.

So where does that leave me?

Right where I am...

charis said...

arminius says:

So where does that leave me?

Right where I am...

7:41 PM, March 15, 2007
----
LOL! So... have you told us exactly where you are? I believe you've told us many places where you're not...

(snicker, snicker! I must be very tired, because this struck me as very funny)

arminius said...

Yes, it does seem like a process of elimination. I'm not here, not there...

Sometimes I feel a little like Job, who said "Why is light given to a man whose way is hidden, And whom God has hedged in?".

Even Moses said "The secret things belong to the Lord our God..."

One thing I know I am is a sinner saved by grace, once and for all, and that all of my days were written in His book before one of them came to be. (I think I'm getting a headache...)

Fellow strangers and aliens, you have blessed me today. I haven't encountered a group with such a passion for truth in a long time. Wouldn't it be grand if we could all break bread together and discuss the things of God?

What's up with the blog master though? Armininian, definitely! :-)

(offline)

New BBC Open Forum said...

arminius wrote:

"What's up with the blog master though? Armininian, definitely! :-)"

Hey, just trying to keep things "on topic." It wasn't meant to be a statement of personal opinion because frankly, this discussion has made my eyes glaze over. :-) You know, with that screen name, I wouldn't be labeling other people!

ezekiel said...

Astounded,

You said,
You must take into account the dynamics of the Old Testiment. You had human-demon inbred beings on earth (maybe the reason for the great flood?).

11:41 PM, March 14, 2007


Ezekiel said,

I don't know where we get the humans breeding with the demons. I have not found anything in the OT that man was doing then that he is not doing now from the standpoint of sin. As I understand it, we had mans fall into an eternal state of sin and seperation from God.

Then Astounded said,

If you read Genesis 6, you will see how the demon/human half breeds were introduced to Earth.

Ezekiel said,

Where is the demon? All I see is the sons of God and the daughters of men.

Then astounded said,
The sons of God are the demons, the daughters of men are the humans.

The product of the cross breeding are the Nephilim

12:50 AM, March 15, 2007



Hebrews 1:4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

1:5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?

Per the notes in my study Bible, you appear to be a victim of an old heresy that had Jesus in the position of the Head angel therby positioning angels equal to Jesus. We all know that is not true!

Hebrews 1-4,5 makes it clear that that is not the case. 2 Sam 7:14 also uses "son of God" to describe King David, an apparent son of God.

I hope it is obvious that one should read Gen 6 literally as discussed earlier today. To say that "Sons of God" were demons cannot be true!

Astounded said...

ezekiel said...

Hebrews 1:4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

1:5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?


You have made a false assumption and provided scripture to bolster your false assumption that I place angels on par with Jesus. I have never stated that.


Per the notes in my study Bible, you appear to be a victim of an old heresy that had Jesus in the position of the Head angel therby positioning angels equal to Jesus. We all know that is not true!

I never even intimated that angels are on par with Jesus. Such an idea is asinine. For every study Bible you find that refers to the Nephilim as merely human I can counter with another scholar that asserts that the Nephilim were indeed demon/human half breeds. Dr. Merrill F. Unger, past professor emeritus of OT studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, was a staunch proponent of this philosophy. Highly qualified in all respects, he authored some 40 books, many of which have long been standard texts in our Christian colleges and seminaries, as well as in all doctrinally sound pastoral libraries.

Peakes Commentary also touches on the Nephilim as being human/demon hybrids.

I can go on and on.....

I hope it is obvious that one should read Gen 6 literally as discussed earlier today. To say that "Sons of God" were demons cannot be true!

That is your opinion of which many scholars much more learned than you or me disagree.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Why TULIP?

WatchingHISstory said...

Some speak of your calvinism as a conversion fron Arminianism. I believe I was a calvinist before I knew I was a calvinist. I was a calvinistic pentecostal! Embrace that! I was a calvinist when calvinism wasn't cool. I was what Dr. Rogers delivered the SBC from at about the same time.
I was raised a country boy in a small middle Tennessee town by poor farming parents who attended a mixture of methodist and baptist churches and attended one room schools in thoes same churches. My father was Free Methodist and my aunt led my parents into a Nazarene Church and later became involved in a small pentecostal church when I was one year old.
So by culture and tradition I should have been arminian.
But when I got saved and was baptized (trinitarian, orthodox fashion) I also was introduced to the working of the Holy Spirit in very unintellectual fashion. There was error all around though I did not know it.
But the work of the Spirit was such that I knew that I was depraved even as a ten year old and because of the attitude of the professing adults in church I knew I had to conceal my depravity. I accepted Christ and was baptized and knew I was a Christian but I never internalized any illusions to deny my depravity. So I lived a life of constant struggle between what I knew to be true. I clung to my young profession and never strayed far from the tarrying bench. But it has not been just my belief that Christ saved me but that I was depraved. I was a sinner saved by grace in a church that preached that there was no such thing. Inside I had the Spirit tell me over and over, "yes there is." I'm here to announce that neither calvinism nor arminianism nor tradition nor culture nor denominations nor mom or dad but the Holy Spirit applying the grace of Christ saves us and sets us free. Without a doubt I am elected!

WatchingHISstory said...

I logged off hoping to get a little sleep but He is "Killing me Softly With His Song" and I can't stop. Let me tell you how I became a five point calvinist. I'm not an intellectual calvinist and while I would love to be able to boast that a through study of scripture has led me to that persuasion. Even as I read many of your post including AOG who is becomming my hero, I become aware of how little of the Bible I really understand and with the aid of the computer search I can fake the big words.
Simply my belief in total depravity just implies the other four points. But I also use a criteria to arrive at my understanding and that is Authority. I trust the opinions of highly trained men who have attained a degree of success in theology. One a professor I had in college but the other is the men of the council or Dort. They met in 154 sessions over a period of several months and hashed over the five points of Arminius' teaching which when I read his points I can't make sense of because they sure sound spiritual and intellectual to me but these men said no to them and came to the five points not of calvinism but the council of Dort for the Dutch Reformed Church. The criteria for this conclusion is a widely and effective one especially in a court of law but the weakness is that two authorities can contradict each other. If you read Erasmus, Augustine, Luther and Calvin you will get bogged down in contradictions and then if you read modern and contempory variations you will be in a deeper pit. If this many men agreed on these points (and that could not possibly happen in American Christianity today, unless the Spitit so orders them) I believe that the same Holy Spirit that inspired ancient authors also guided these men as well as set the stage for the English translations, which makes me a stronger believer in the KJV.
(I am not equating the council of Dort with Holy Scripture - don't even go there.)

arminius said...

In the days of Arminius (around 1600) the controversy between the reformed tradition and the 'new' doctrines being proposed almost sparked a war.

But how many men of God are passionate enough about the gospel to fight for it today? Arminian, Calvinist, or whatever, how many would die for what they believe about God?

ezekiel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
WatchingHISstory said...

I would not be so foolish as to die for what I believed about God.
For sure I would not be so foolish to die for being a calvinist let alone arminian.
But I would be honored, though I am not worthy, to die for what God believes about me. He knows that I am depraved and hopelessly lost and my only salvation is the gift of his son to die in my stead. I am passionate about that. The question is am I worthy of such a death?

WatchingHISstory said...

When I am around my daughter and my two granddaughters I have to be careful about the use of words like stupid, ignorant and idiots. And when I slip and say them I get a disapproving stare from her.
We live in a PC world where there is no such persons because we are all of equal worth and possibilities. "God don't make junk"
In I Cor. 12-14 Paul uses the word "igornant" and lots of corresponding synonyms dispersed through out the text. All these are spread out to include everyone in church beginning with brethern who are leaders to women who don't have a right to speak. There are thoes who have the responsibility to speak correctly and thoes who must ask their husbands at home. Paul is not harboring illusions about there being stupid people in church. In the church there are believers who are unbelievers! There are smart people who are stupid! Wycliffe tranlates the word as "idiots" in one place. 14:24 There is no illusions that we are equally righteous in Christ but there are levels of development. The growth in the body is the learning process that produces it. It is the Holy Spirit that works in the body with supernatural endowments in all aspects of growth. The greatest endowment is agape love that has to be endowed or it doesn't exist at all. The Holy Spirit still uses signs to get the attention of the ignorant ones. This work has never been withdrawn. The same sign has a corresponding clear message to be given to the believers, that is to make believers out of unbelievers. It is all a supernatural work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Scriptures provide the guideline toward decency and order.

WatchingHISstory said...

David was told by the Lord that he would not build the temple but his son, Solomon, would be appointed to do the honored task. God saw something in David that displeased him and that something seems to surface when he acknowledged before the whole cangregation that Solomon would do the work yet David humiliated his son by saying he is young, inexperienced and tender and the work is too great for him. This followed the statement that God had chosen Solomon. So David macro-managed all the plans and this must have made Solomon feel small and dependent on his PaPa. David offended his son and he offended God who appointed his Son. Love must be a trust in God and others to do their jobs.

There are thoes in the body who are young, inexperienced and tender. There are women who are ignorant and can create chaos in the church, specifically Paul says that they should not ask questions in church but ask their husbands at home. Traditions carried over from Judaism greatly affected this rule. However Paul's greater emphasis seems to be the ignorance of the brethern. "Brethern I would not have you ignorant." The emphasis is not so much on what inexperienced people can do but how the brethern relate to them. The context is not about speaking in tongues but how the leaders treat the members, especially weaker ones in the body of Christ. This kind of love is a supernatural trust. If David did not have it how can you and I expect to have it on our own without the Holy Spirit putting it in our hearts. Our leaders can preach from the scriptures beautiful sermons about love without a clue as to what love really is. It is really possible that even a PHD does not understand this!! A leader that rows on ahead in uncharted waters without this love is ignorant and like a bull in a china shop. He needs the Holy Spirit to teach him and not administrators to guide him. A leader should facilitate growth and not be a stumbling to it.

WatchingHISstory said...

Yes with fear, trembling and a heavy heart Dr. Rogers was preaching that night. Also a lone woman down front interrupted his preaching with an applause and he offended her. Like Moses he struck the rock.

Her applause haunts me every day.

WatchingHISstory said...

Semi-pelagian ministers strike the rock instead of speaking to the rock. Water still flows abundantly. Souls are saved but they themselves miss their rewards. Other more deserving ministers receive their rewards.

Perhaps now we are seeing before our very eyes the Father's will being done on earth as in heaven.

Very great men can have fatal flaws. Jacob, Moses and David. Other men received their reward. Joseph, Joshua and Solomom.
Jacob, Moses and David must have shed tears over their seemingly small flaws.

The wood, hay and stuble of Bellevue is burning. American fundamentalism should wake up.

WatchingHISstory said...

Calvinism gives every Christian small and great a sense of being exclusively and particularily chosen and selected by God. Self determinization is minimized.

Armininism gives ever Christian a sense of self dterminization. He has a part in choosing. God's sovereignty is minimized.