J4 wrote: There is also the Biblical view! It teaches that God loves the whole world and made a way for them to be saved if they obey by faith, which they are able to do through the preaching of the gospel.
Ah John, that is not the biblical view, it is Arminian through and through; it is how the Arminian interprets the Bible.
The Arminian position is that because God savingly loves the whole world, and has made provision for every man to be saved from his sins through Christ's sacrifice, God must now wait and see what effect the preaching of the message has upon the hearers. The salvation of the sinner is completely down to the sinner himself. Will he or won't he? If he won't, there is no hope for him, God will leave him in his sins and he will perish. If he will, God will mark him as elect, write his name in the Lamb's Book of Life, and bring him to birth because of the decision the sinner made. That is Arminianism, and it is very easy to arrive at such pitch, if no trouble is taken to read the whole Bible and see God's purposes in their context.
But for you to say, "No, I don't believe Arminianism, I believe the Bible" is incorrect.
NeedHim wrote: Bro Jhn UK; So the Evangelist, or a preacher, or even a mom or dad, who is sharing their faith in a 1 to 1 setting. Or someone behind the pulpit preaching & teaching, Should have a greater desire of seeing one through the power of the Spirit plowing up & turning over hardened soil. In the Spirit leading one to Christ. In seeing one come to a possession of saving Faith, that only God can give through the power of the Gospel; Jhn 1:12-13. Many will have a profession of faith, Mat 7:21-23, but in reality they didnâ€™t have a possession of saving Faith!
Brother NeedHim, I do not disagree with you at all. But your words do not tally with reality, concerning what you and I believe.
For example, these folks in Matt 7:21-23. Did they perish for lack of hearing the perfect gospel? Is God's providence so weak that he cannot reach the non-elect and save them?
What!? Do you want God to save those who are not chosen?
I tell you what bro, if you want to see souls saved, and you love the ministry of Charles Spurgeon, check out his gospel sermons and the open invitation to one and all to come to Christ. Why put a stumblingblock in the way of sinners which God never authorized?
Dr. Tim wrote: â€śHe...always extended the invitation that if anyone was moved to seek an interest in Christ by his preaching on a Sunday, they could meet with him at his vestry on Monday morning. Without fail, there was always someone at his door the next day.â€ť Who was â€śheâ€ť? Why, he was that old Calvinist, Charles Spurgeon. This is essentially the same thing that I do, but I invite them to come and meet with someone right then. And we donâ€™t use â€śsalesmanshipâ€ť to try to persuade them to say the so-called sinnerâ€™s prayer. There is no sinnerâ€™s prayer, or any other type of prayer, that can save a sinner. JESUS saves sinners who trust Him to save them, with or without a prayer being said. â€śBy grace are ye saved through faith,â€ť not through saying a one-two-three, repeat-after-me formulaic prayer.
J4 wrote: .. Notice how they themselves donâ€™t come up with a definition for total depravity, even though they are the ones who practice it!
Ahem, are you saying that I practice total depravity?
John, I'm trying to help you out here. First thing, after studying the attributes of Jehovah, as shown in scripture, is to study creation and the fall of man. Look at the creation laws and punishments, and relate it to your own life today, 6,000 years later. The fall had far-reaching consequences for the human race, and the sooner you get to grips with that the better.
Please don't fall for those orators who say, "Oh, the fall was not so serious, it hardly affects anyone. Adam's offspring were not born dead, only partly dead."
Once you see the true effect of the fall and the headship of Adam over the human race, all your other doctrine will take shape and make sense. I will not be needed, for you will see it for yourself.
Mind you, you will not see it without the enlightenment of the Spirit and his gracious advances and quickening. _____________________
Needhim wrote: Bro Jhn UK, pleasant greetings to you; What I was saying when people use Rev 3:20, as a plea to one, that Jesus is knocking on their hearts door, sounds good in theory, but itâ€™s an emotional plea. The context of Rev 3:20 doesnâ€™t support, that notion in that way. As it causes more harm than good.
NeedHim, pleasant greetings to you also, bro.
As for harm, I don't think you can get the non-elect into a worse state than they already are. Many reprobates have religion, in fact the majority do so.
But I think I can speak on behalf of great multitudes of God's people over the centuries, who were convinced from John 3:16 that God loved them and gave his Son for them; from Romans 6:23 that the wages of sin is death and eternal separation from God; from John 3:3 that they needed to be born again; from John 1:13 that they needed to believe on and receive Christ; from Revelation 3:20 that Jesus was outside their life and he had to be asked to come into their heart by faith and make them new (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Okay, you have to ask the question, "How come these elect souls were not gathered by those with sounder doctrine?" Answer, "Today's Calvinists are not of the same ilk as historic ones."
J4 wrote: Anyone adding to scripture any of these things should be ashamed of themselves!
Rather, anyone taking away these truths from scripture is a heretic, and a displeaser of God. You are stealing God's word and replacing it with a more tolerable theory.
It all comes down to a lack of sincere Bible Study, John. You've latched on to a few Yee Ha Calvinist-haters who falsely describe what they believe, and you imagine you have the truth on your doorstep. But it is all a mirage, a wisp of smoke.
You see John, you disparage the doctrine of total depravity without even knowing what the phrase means. And the reason is because you've been taught to do that. You never got there on your own. You have a Yee Ha religion, and it will avail you nothing on the day of judgment.
I recommend again that you spend much time studying, with the help of others, the deeper things of God's attributes, and try to grasp what God is like. Then you will see more clearly what is the truth, concerning the state of mankind in their sins, who can only produce offspring who are born sinners. Or don't you believe that "in Adam all die"?
J4 wrote: Sola Scriptura! If the Bible doesnâ€™t teach it, I wonâ€™t believe it.
I'm glad to hear it, John.
The great problem for you is that the Bible teaches: total depravity, unconditional election, limited atonement (actually, particular redemption), irresistible grace and preservation of the saints.
So you see, the Bible teaches these things, but you still can't believe it. And it has nothing to do with Calvinism or Reformed teaching; rather it stems from your incorrect concept of God. You are not starting at the beginning, but trying to be a Christian from a midway point: Believe and be Saved. But you never stopped to ponder what the words "believe" and "saved" actually mean, in the context of the created world and history and God's laws.
Seriously, it would serve you well to study a few books on the attributes of God. Good and godly men have taken the subject and gone through scripture for the answers, and written them up for our edification.
There are millions of gods claimed by men. But what is the one, true God, JEHOVAH like? Once you can answer this question in detail, your theology will be transformed, and more conformed to the truth. You will meet him one day, get to know him.
Dolores wrote: Iâ€™m not into links or other people that have agendas for why they feel the way they do about certain people or whatever, so I give as what has been shown me through the scripture. These keep coming to my mind (thatâ€™s how I am led by the Holy Spirit ) scripture brought to mind. are Phillipians1:12-18 Mark 9:33-42 These are written by men of God inspired by the Holy Spirit. Have a blessed Day everyone. Find a Church and fellowship with other Christians thatâ€™s the Lordâ€™s way of helping us to grow and serve,be a blessing and in turn be blessed. Amen??
Thanks Dolores and amen. The past day or two I was wondering where that passage was which you quoted in Mark 9. It is most helpful in preventing a bigot spirit.
Unfortunately there will be some in this world who vainly imagine they have a monopoly on truth, who isolate themselves and separate from church and lead what could be described as an anchorite life, partly joined to church but largely separated so as not to become contaminated with the doctrines of others, even when those others are saints.
I feel very sorry for such, because extrication from those beliefs is very hard.
Lurker wrote: 2) Honestly I haven't really considered it before. I guess I've always believed faith is faith and don't see a reason to believe otherwise. But if you have some thoughts I'd be willing to listen.
Hi Lurker, I've been pondering this for a while, as part of my studies in healing? today.
If faith is a fruit of the Spirit, then all men who have the Spirit will have faith. It is one of the best evidences of being indwelt by the Spirit.
But there is another faith (not saving faith) which is a gift of the Spirit. And we know that the Spirit gives the gifts to different people that all may profit and that all may be important to the assembly of Christians. This gift of faith is mentioned in 1 Cor 12:9 and Paul mentions it again in 1 Cor 13:2 as having "all faith that could move a mountain".
Just a few thoughts on different aspects of faith.
NeedHim wrote: .. Bro John UK; If one is saved by the Altar Call, through asking Jesus into their heart, is despite of that, notion of Rev 3:20, being taken out of context. ..
Brother, I could not make head nor tail of that paragraph.
However, you mention three things: altar call;, asking Jesus into your heart; Rev 3:20 being taken out of context.
You then quote Daryl Wingerd, who says, "While we should rejoice that many have been truly saved through these methods..."
Now you and me both know and agree as to how God saves a sinner. We may not fully understand the mystery, but we know that salvation is of the Lord, and that he saves his elect. And he does it through calling them, justifying them, and glorifying them.
Now Daryl accepts that despite Rev 3:20 being misinterpreted so that sinners as well as saints can open their doors and receive Christ to dwell within them, and despite altar call methodology, many sinners have yet been converted and truly saved by those means. And I appreciate that.
But there are extremists abroad who will not allow them conversion on such terms. This makes them extremely dangerous in Christian communities, causing doubt instead of faith, causing schisms etc.
NeedHim, thank you brother for your testimony and the work you are doing for the Lord, in accordance with his will.
The big problem, and I'm sure you have thought about it, is that the commission, given to the apostles 2,000 years ago, was to go preach the gospel to every creature.
Evangelism was never designed to be robotoid, where only a few hear the gospel because in God's purposes only these were elect. No, it is God's will that every member of the human race hears the gospel. That is what Jesus taught, and that is what Jesus is waiting to see.
Think about it, brother.
Are there no smart brethren who can come up with a way of getting the gospel to the whole world? Or is the tradition in Reformed churches to preach the gospel in the church service and pray for God's elect to come in, drawn by God's power?
Actually, these elect souls are largely being converted through Arminist preaching, asking Jesus into their heart, and being followed up by the BGEA, who supply them with literature and discipleship training.
Dr. Tim wrote: Iâ€™d much rather see someone do an imperfect job of winning souls than someone doing a perfect job of NOT winning them.
This is precisely what I think also, Doc.
Wouldn't it be marvellous if there were perfect preachers who perfectly preached the perfect gospel message and who brought into existence the perfect conversions producing the most perfect people.
But this is not the case, and never will be. Paul explained this in great detail. A preacher is but a man, a man with a message, and it is one of the hardest things to do in this world. Sin is always at the door, and the devil is never far away.
But hey, I have some good news! Salvation is of the Lord, and it transpires that God is not so choosy about whom he will work through to save a sinner. He will save souls through you bro, who holds IFB doctrines, and he will save souls through me, who am a moderate Calvinist like Spurgeon.
But in heaven, I have little doubt as to which grouping will have the largest numbers of converts, and it will be the BGEA, and Billy Graham in particular.
If the perfect people have converts there, I will be surprised, but will rejoice anyway, because it is right to rejoice when a sinner repents.
One of the greatest problems within christendom at the present time is a minority group of people, whether they be saved or not I don't know, who from one corner of their mouth say that we will never find a perfect church, and out the other they grumble at those who are imperfect.
I personally would far rather be a realist who sees things as they actually are, rather than dream about some sort of spiritual utopia which does not exist. Even those who agree with one another, if they should form themselves into a working body serving the Lord, would find plenty to argue over, simply because of imperfection in knowledge.
It does not glorify God nor edify saints, to entertain evil thoughts against others, even against enemies. And even if we fail to do what is right according to the teaching of Jesus, at least we shall know that it is righteousness to love our enemies as well as all others; and that it is not righteousness to love only those who love us.
Please note that God's love warms the heart, even if it is in context of rebuke. The so-called love of those who want to put everyone else straight is cold and ineffectual, so it needs thinking about and fine tuning, maybe coarse tuning.
Dr. Tim wrote: The â€śinvitation systemâ€ť is what the Bible uses. â€śCome unto meâ€ť is an invitation. â€śIncline your ear, and come unto meâ€ť is an invitation. â€śCome ye to the watersâ€ť is an invitation. â€śThe Spirit and the Bride say, Comeâ€ť is an invitation. â€śAnd whosoever will, let him take the water of life freelyâ€ť is an invitation. â€śAnd let him that heareth say, Comeâ€ť IS A COMMAND TO GIVE INVITATIONS! Any Christian who doesnâ€™t invite people to come to Christ is disobedient and rebellious. The Bible says to do it, so either do it or confess that you are backslidden and living in sin.
Thanks Doc for sharing that. It very much reminded me of the calling of Levi, who was sitting at the receipt of customs doing his daily work when Jesus and his disciples came by, and Jesus turned and said to him, "Follow me!" Wow, how powerful was that, that caused him to leave his money table, his livelihood, and follow Jesus he knew not where?
Mind you, it is somewhat different from the rather hypnotic "altar call" of the crusade meeting, with subdued lighting, music which affects the emotions, and the psychological pressure of many others going forwards.
But I loved the gospel texts you quoted, and agree with their use.
Lurker, your post of 2/21/2020 10:08PM was a great blessing to me, so I render you thanks for taking the time to think about it and draw conclusions.
I believe you are quite right in saying that all of God's work on the earth in our day is by the Holy Spirit, including such things as quickening, regeneration, enlightenment, conviction, convincing, indwelling, assuring, comforting, helping, sanctifying (together with the word), empowering for service, giving gifts etc. etc.
There is much going on in the unseen world, and because the Spirit may be omnipresent, he can be working in a multitude of lives at the same time. How mighty is the Lord, who does these things?
Tell me bro, do you think there is a difference between the faith which comes as a fruit of the Spirit, and the faith which is a gift of the Spirit?
Dolores wrote: Thanks for the information, John. Itâ€™s hard to find a good clean mystery. Will get one and let you know how it went.
I don't think you will be disappointed, Dolores. But they do tend to be addictive. After the first, you will be looking in the library for the second, and so on.
Mike wrote: Very good books indeed, John. One of my daughter's favorite series, btw.
Thanks Mike for sharing that; it's not often I recommend a novel, but there is something quite special about the Ellis Peters books. And I think it is good for the mind to be drawn away into fictional land, to give it a break from daily life.
Dolores wrote: Thanks John and I do have a channel that has older movies and mostly black and white and they are refreshing to watch ever so often. I like a good mystery and have watched Perot and a few other favorites like Midsummer Murders on the British network BBC mostly I read and you have to be careful of books now. I get mine out of the Church Library mostly. Seems like filth has been poured out on the world today. The only station I can watch movies is Turner Classic Movies.
Thanks for sharing that, Dolores. IMHO the best secular novels with any chance of playing a part in growth in holiness are those by Ellis Peters (real name Edith Pargeter), who wrote a large series about a former soldier who turned monk and ended up at Shrewsbury Abbey, and became not only a herb-healer (12th century doctor) but because he was one the brothers who was allowed out of the abbey confines, he was able also to do some sleuthing as a side line. So that he tended the sick and brought criminals to justice. His name (he was Welsh) was Brother Cadfael, and the writing is never offensive, and of a very high standard.