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Breaking News Home | All | Religion | Society | Tech | Choice | SA Newsroom
FRONT PAGE  |  2/20/2020
MONDAY, FEB 10, 2020  |  137 comments
Franklin Graham surprised by backlash over UK evangelistic tour
Evangelist Franklin Graham has said in a media interview that he’s surprised to see all the confirmed venues in the United Kingdom pulling out due to his views on homosexuality, even as his supporters have started an online petition calling it “bullying” and a “hate crime.”

“I have been surprised… I'm not coming to speak against anybody and I don’t name any groups of people,” Graham, the son of the late evangelist Billy Graham, told Christian Today, based in the U.K., in an interview. “I’m coming to tell people how they can have a relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ.”

Graham plans to tour the U.K. with eight stops starting in May, and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, which he heads, says more than 1,800 churches across the United Kingdom are cooperating with it “to share the Gospel in multiple cities this spring.” ...


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News Item2/20/2020 7:26 AM
John for JESUS | Atl  Find all comments by John for JESUS
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Not that any of you are right, because you are not, but even if it said faith was a gift, a gift can be received or rejected. It doesn’t prove God overforces people to believe against their will. Sorry!
137

News Item2/20/2020 4:39 AM
John UK  Find all comments by John UK
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Unprofitable Servant wrote:
John my short answer is 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.
Okay bro, sounds good to me.

Coming to Christ = Believing on Christ = Receiving Christ.

This is given to a sinner by the Father.
_______________

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
(Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV)

Here is what I believe Paul is saying:

For by grace are ye saved through faith; not of works, lest any man should boast.

But he inserts this: 'and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:'

He is keen to make clear that even the faith through which salvation comes, is itself a gift from God, showing us the impotence of mankind and the spiritual deadness, the inability to believe, to repent. That salvation is all of grace, all of it is a gift from God.

It is the only way a Christian may have eternal security, for their salvation to be God's choice not their choice. Any other scenario involves man's input, however small, and that will always be a weak link which fails them.

136

News Item2/20/2020 4:10 AM
B. McCausland  Find all comments by B. McCausland
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" ... by grace are ye saved through faith;
and *that* not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast"

Will it not be better to take that that particular *that* in the verse represents the whole sentence preceding, (say the sentence saying 'by grace are ye saved through faith') which summarizes the whole of the matter, instead of trying to slot the sentence apart in segments to see which one is the gift?

When considering the whole context of scripture every element of that sentence points to a gift, with each element having a determined function to make the whole work towards the common end.

135

News Item2/19/2020 11:02 PM
Unprofitable Servant | TN  Find all comments by Unprofitable Servant
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John UK wrote:
Brother, in that case, what makes you think that saving faith is a gift from God? By proof text or a general consensus throughout the whole Bible?
John my short answer is 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.

134

News Item2/19/2020 9:45 PM
Lurker  Protected NameFind all comments by Lurker
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James Thomas wrote:
Good points and thanks for the correction Lurker.

I see I used too broad a brush with my comment regarding faith as it is the work of God(John 6:45) hence Paul saying we are His workmanship (Eph 2:10) created in Christ Jesus.

Partly a correction and partly wishful thinking that someone may take heed. Anyway...

Eph 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Both grace and faith are feminine nouns. "That" is a pronoun and refers to a noun. "Saved" is a verb so "that" can't refer to it.

Furthermore, "that" is a gift which gift is a neuter noun.

And finally, "that" in not of works.

Rom 3:27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.

Seems to me that Paul provided the exegesis of Ephesians 2:8-9 right there for anyone willing to connect the dots.

Faith is not of works. Faith is a gift (see my prior post). Faith is righteousness. Faith justifies. Faith is life. Faith fulfills the second law covenant of Deuteronomy 28-29. Faith enables the possessor thereof to "love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might." (Deut 6:5) and live.

133

News Item2/19/2020 7:42 PM
James Thomas | Fla  Find all comments by James Thomas
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Lurker wrote:
James

Regarding faith as a gift, you're right; it's not found as a named gift but indirectly it is:

I think the controversy comes from seeing different gifts in scripture rather than seeking the one gift from which all proceed; grace:

1 Tim 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with **faith and love** which is in Christ Jesus.

Faith loves God (Deut 6:5) and love loves the brethren (Lev 19:18) thus fulfilling the great commandments which is life (Luke 10:25-28) and both are in Christ, full of grace and truth.

Good points and thanks for the correction Lurker.

I see I used too broad a brush with my comment regarding faith as it is the work of God(John 6:45) hence Paul saying we are His workmanship (Eph. 2:10) created in Christ Jesus.

132

News Item2/19/2020 6:34 PM
B. McCausland  Find all comments by B. McCausland
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The preposition 'through' that stands before the term faith in Eph.2:8 denotes the channel an act is performed by, as in

"thy faith has saved thee"

"through faith in his name has made this man strong"

"... God would justify the heathen through faith"

"ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus"

"Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law,
or by the hearing of faith?"

"faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness"

On the other hand the concept of grace speaks of unrequired graciousness or liberality.
This is where the idea of a gift lies as out of God's goodness the means for faith are granted, as seen in

"they rehearsed all that God had done with them,
and how *he had opened the door of faith* unto the Gentiles"

"it is of faith, that it might be by grace"

"according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith"

Yet faith lies on the human side of the equation as when Christ denounced the religious leaders for having neglected it:

"ye have omitted the weightier matters of the law,
judgment, mercy, and faith"

But scripture never counts faith as a work, only men do this.

See the proof here,

"... to him that works not, but believes on him that justifies the ungodly,
his faith is counted for righteousness"

131

News Item2/19/2020 6:19 PM
John for JESUS | Atl  Find all comments by John for JESUS
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Adriel...

Whenever someone from the Calvinist camp says something so blatantly false, I’m surprised that nobody speaks up! Nobody thinks they can save themselves? Do you know anything about the Pharisees?!

At any rate, the past tense act of Gentiles being saved is the topic of the sentence. Paul is getting the Gentiles to look back at the moment they were saved by God’s grace and saved through faith as an example of how they are now partakers of the gospel and of the salvation it brings.

“That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel:”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭3:6‬

“In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise,”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭1:13‬

130

News Item2/19/2020 3:41 PM
John UK  Find all comments by John UK
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Unprofitable Servant wrote:
Thanks John for your response. At no point have I said that saving faith is not a gift from God. I am saying that is not the message of Ephesians 2:8 specifically
Brother, in that case, what makes you think that saving faith is a gift from God? By proof text or a general consensus throughout the whole Bible?
129

News Item2/19/2020 3:28 PM
Pretty plain  Find all comments by Pretty plain
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Faith is a fruit of the Spirit. Gal.5:22.
Not something we drum up in ourselves to say we are Christians. It comes after regeneration.
128

News Item2/19/2020 3:20 PM
Unprofitable Servant | TN  Find all comments by Unprofitable Servant
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John UK wrote:
Bro US, I see that others of the highbrow variety, are also engaged in a similar thing. I am not able to wade through such a quagmire of intellectual stuff.
But let me ask a question. Is saving faith a gift from God to elect sinners?
If you say it isn't, then how did the sinner who got saved come by faith? Was it by convincing (showing him a miracle in Jesus name)? Or by the mystical power of the word of God (a living word which gives faith to some but not to others)? How is it that you believed on Christ but not all your relatives? Is the Spirit really necessary to bring people to faith? If so, why?
Of course, if the answer to the first question is yes, then all the other questions are redundant.
Thanks John for your response. At no point have I said that saving faith is not a gift from God. I am saying that is not the message of Ephesians 2:8 specifically
127

News Item2/19/2020 2:30 PM
Adriel  Find all comments by Adriel
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John for JESUS wrote:
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:8-9‬
wouldn’t you think that salvation is the topic of the sentence?
John for;
Look at the verse 9 John: quote:
"9 Not of works, lest any man should boast."

Not of works.

NB in theological error many can confuse "Faith" with works.

However nobody thinks they can save themselves.

So the concept of "works" relate in the previous verse to "faith" NOT salvation by self.

This establishes the fact that "faith" is the verse eight theme.

If salvation is NOT the result of faith, by the grace of God, then we are all lost.
Thus salvation is not a gift - Whereas the "means" of salvation in a sinner is "Faith" - Which is the work of the Holy Spirit!!!
Otherwise salvation would be achieved by works.
Which does not work. Does it?

Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."

Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
= Gift of God.
Praise be to God.

126

News Item2/19/2020 1:48 PM
Lurker  Protected NameFind all comments by Lurker
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James Thomas wrote:
But like I said before, nowhere will you see Faith as the gift and salvation is not even mentioned in Eph 2:8.
James,

Regarding faith as a gift, you're right; it's not found as a named gift but indirectly it is:

Rom 5:15 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

Here the gift is 'by grace' meaning part of grace.

Rom 5:16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

Here the gift is 'unto justification'.

Rom 3:28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith...

So scripture indirectly names faith as a gift. I think the controversy comes from seeing different gifts in scripture rather than seeking the one gift from which all proceed; grace:

1 Tim 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with **faith and love** which is in Christ Jesus.

Faith loves God (Deut 6:5) and love loves the brethren (Lev 19:18) thus fulfilling the great commandments which is life (Luke 10:25-28) and both are in Christ, full of grace and truth.

125

News Item2/19/2020 12:29 PM
James Thomas | Fla  Find all comments by James Thomas
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I think headway could be made in such a discussion like this but unfortunately when both sides have their theology in view like I mentioned before in my post, the same result occurs.

Why not do a search for the terms grace and gift when used in conjunction?

Here's one of them where grace is the gift.

1 Peter 4:10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

But like I said before, nowhere will you see Faith as the gift and salvation is not even mentioned in Eph 2:8.

124

News Item2/19/2020 11:54 AM
John UK  Find all comments by John UK
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Dr. Tim wrote:
I often do err, John, but rarely do I err by trying to make scripture fit my beliefs rather than adjusting my beliefs to fit scripture. This is the fatal flaw in Reformed theology. If the scripture doesn’t mean what the system teaches, just change the meaning until it works.
Doc, if a professing Christian has to bend the scripture to make it fit what they already believe, then that person is not sincere. They are dishonest and most likely a pseudo-Christian. Honest Christians accept the many seeming paradoxes of the Bible, things which system theologians will never agree to, no matter what I say to them.

Oh, and there are very, very few professing Christians who are not system theologians, of the same ilk as Bishop John Ryle, for example.

123

News Item2/19/2020 11:29 AM
Dr. Tim | Way Down Yonder  Find all comments by Dr. Tim
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I often do err, John, but rarely do I err by trying to make scripture fit my beliefs rather than adjusting my beliefs to fit scripture. This is the fatal flaw in Reformed theology. If the scripture doesn’t mean what the system teaches, just change the meaning until it works.
122

News Item2/19/2020 10:07 AM
John UK  Find all comments by John UK
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Doc, let me think out loud on this.

John 4:10 KJV
(10)  Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

The gift of God here is Jesus himself, in all his offices and purposes.

Acts 8:20 KJV
(20)  But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.

The gift of God here is the Holy Ghost and all his gifts, given to whomsoever the Lord chooses.

Romans 6:23 KJV
(23)  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Here the gift is eternal life.

1 Corinthians 7:7 KJV
(7)  For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that.

Gifts either of nature or of grace, all comes from God.

Ephesians 2:8 KJV
(8)  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Here the gift is saving faith, which results in the gift of eternal life, showing that it is ALL of grace, not partly of grace, as the RCC would have it.

Methinks you err, bro.

121

News Item2/19/2020 9:27 AM
Dr. Tim | Way Down Yonder  Find all comments by Dr. Tim
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I disagree that the phrase “the gift of God” refers to various gifts in the New Testament, John. It refers solely to the impartation of salvation (John 4:10, Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:8) or the impartation of the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:20, II Timothy 1:6). The only other time “gift of God” is used it is not “the” gift of God, which in the NT invariably refers to salvation. “THE gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
120

News Item2/19/2020 8:58 AM
John UK  Find all comments by John UK
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Unprofitable Servant wrote:
The Greek, which is what it was it was written in, does not agree
https://hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/questions/2249/what
Bro US, I see that others of the highbrow variety, are also engaged in a similar thing. I am not able to wade through such a quagmire of intellectual stuff.

But let me ask a question. Is saving faith a gift from God to elect sinners?

If you say it isn't, then how did the sinner who got saved come by faith? Was it by convincing (showing him a miracle in Jesus name)? Or by the mystical power of the word of God (a living word which gives faith to some but not to others)? How is it that you believed on Christ but not all your relatives? Is the Spirit really necessary to bring people to faith? If so, why?

Of course, if the answer to the first question is yes, then all the other questions are redundant.

119

News Item2/19/2020 8:43 AM
Unprofitable Servant | TN  Find all comments by Unprofitable Servant
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John UK wrote:
Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV
(8)  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
(9)  Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Similar to what St James said earlier, it is necessary simply to look at the sentence construction: what is THAT referring to? It is either:-
1. grace (that grace)
2. saved (that saved)
3. faith (that faith)
Obviously we can remove number 2 because it makes no sense. We can also remove number 1 because we acknowledge that the grace is referring to the grace of God, which is God showing undeserved favour. Therefore, "that not of yourselves" must refer to "faith", which is the gift of God to the sinner; it is a work of the Spirit of Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our "faith".
To those who believe salvation is the gift, well it could have been if the text had said, "For by grace ye have salvation through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God". But it doesn't so it cannot be.
The Greek, which is what it was it was written in, does not agree

https://hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/questions/2249/what

118
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