Let's be reasonable with one another, shall we?

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Auto-Pilot

I will be away from my computer until later on this weekend.

While I am away, will any of you, who are so inclined, answer a question or share your thoughts on this:

Were people before Pentcost indwelt by the Spirit of God? Were they "regenerated" or "born-again"? Are these the right words for believers before Pentecost?

I am not limiting this to way back in the OT (although they are part of this question) ... I am even wondering about the apostles and disciples who were with Jesus before the crucifixtion/ressurection. What about it?

51 Comments:

  • The disciples did nto have the Holy Spirit until Jesus gave Him to them in John 20:22. Many say this is symbolic but I don't think so. Pentecost was the coming of the Spirit with power, what they were waiting for in Jerusalem (Luke 24:49). Pentecost was a display of power but the disciples with Jesus in John 20 were given the Spirit.

    By Blogger jeff, at 5/10/2006 10:10 AM  

  • Just to add to what Jeff said,

    John 14:26 says, "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you."

    This indicates a future occurrence.

    Then again, the OT is replete with circumstances where God filled someone with the Spirit for specific purposes, i.e. Exodus 35:31 - And He has filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding and in knowledge and in all craftsmanship;

    Numbers 24:2 -
    And Balaam lifted up his eyes and saw Israel camping tribe by tribe; and the Spirit of God came upon him.

    There are numerous examples of God sending His Spirit onto/into someone, and then removing it as well.

    Scripture doesn't seem to indicate that before Pentecost anyone was 'filled with the Spirit' as we now are.

    By Blogger Gayla, at 5/10/2006 10:49 AM  

  • They were certainly not indwellt by the Holy Ghost in the OT.

    It would not be incorrect to say they were regenerate to some extent, though not as we are.

    It is also fairly certain that those saved in the Millennium will not be indwellt by the Holy Ghost.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/10/2006 12:16 PM  

  • By the way, I will miss you, Rose~.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/10/2006 12:17 PM  

  • Excellent question, Ros(i)e! Seriously, the profundity of this issue is such that proper understanding of it prevents error upon error, especially as to Old Testament exegesis.

    As I may have told you, I challenged our Pastor regarding his use of the term "backslide", asserting that such concept pertains not at all to this age. His knee-jerk reaction was to (entirely incorrectly) label such view as "hyper-dispensational", but, upon hearing my contention that, prior to Pentecost, indwelling by the Holy Spirit did not occur as it has since, he left it with "that's a good one to ask John [MacArthur (a mentor of his)].

    Yes, David prayed that God not take His Holy Spirit from him; yes, John the Baptist was "... filled with the Holy Spirit while still in his mother's womb" (Luke 1:15). Neither they, nor anyone, however, was indwelt in the sense that all true believers have been since Pentecost.

    Being "filled with the Spirit" is not the same as being indwelt; otherwise, it would be redundant for Paul (or anyone) to command such. To be "filled with the Spirit" is to be CONTROLLED by the Spirit (as opposed to being controlled by, for example, wine).

    Being "filled with the Spirit" is the result of obedience to (Paul's) commands that we not grieve (Ephesians 5:30) or quench/stifle (1 Thess. 5:19) the Spirit. Such is a moment-by-moment, ongoing process of sanctification. If we are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, we are enabled to desire to avoid grieving and quenching, to YIELD our desires to His.

    By Anonymous jim mcdermott, at 5/10/2006 12:38 PM  

  • I already have missed you Rose...I get weary of coming to your site and always seeing 'what is faith part five'. I want to know what else you are thinking...

    I would be inclined to partly agree with you Matthew, that they were never indwelt, I mean, afterall, why would Jesus say, 'I will send a comforter' if the comforter was already present.

    BUT! How then do we answer David's plea for the Spirit not to be taken from him (Psa. 50?)?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 5/10/2006 5:57 PM  

  • matthew;
    Jews will be indwelt by the Spirit in the kingdom
    Ezekiel 36:25-27-“Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.”
    I think you are right as far as the gentile nations are concerned. Satan is bound, so temptation would be diminished. Sin will be present still. it sounds like a sinner will die at 100 years of age. Jews and gentiles are treated differently in the kingdom.
    Isaiah 65:17-25-“ “ For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create; For behold, I create Jerusalem as a rejoicing, And her people a joy. I will rejoice in Jerusalem, And joy in My people; The voice of weeping shall no longer be heard in her, Nor the voice of crying. “ No more shall an infant from there live but a few days, Nor an old man who has not fulfilled his days; For the child shall die one hundred years old, But the sinner being one hundred years old shall be accursed. They shall build houses and inhabit them; They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit. They shall not build and another inhabit; They shall not plant and another eat; For as the days of a tree, so shall be the days of My people, And My elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands. They shall not labor in vain, Nor bring forth children for trouble; For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the LORD, And their offspring with them. “ It shall come to pass That before they call, I will answer; And while they are still speaking, I will hear.
    a little off topic, but i could resist. Eveything I would have to say on the topic has been said.
    pat

    By Anonymous pat, at 5/10/2006 6:56 PM  

  • Matthew:
    You said:
    (It would not be incorrect to say they were regenerate to some extent, though not as we are.)

    This begs some questions.
    1. What does regeneration accomplish?
    2. How does O.T. regeneration differ from N.T. regeneration.
    3. What do you think being regenerate means?

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/10/2006 9:19 PM  

  • Hi Rose,

    When I look at a complicated question, I like to break things down chronologically, so here’s the time-line answer:

    In the OT, most people were not filled with the Holy Spirit in the same sense that they were at Pentecost. Instead, the Spirit of God came upon them for certain tasks, then left them again when those tasks were over. It is easiest to see this in the lives of Samson and Saul, where this occurred repeatedly. (Judg 14:6, 14:19, 15:14; 1 Sam 10:10; 11:6; 19:23).

    I said ‘most’ people were like this, because David was an exception. This is going to surprise people, but David was an actual prototype and example of what it is to be a New Testament Christian, in a covenant with God:

    “Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you-- the sure mercies of David. Indeed I have given him as a witness to the people . . .”
    (Isa 55:3-4)

    Consider: David confessed Jesus as Lord (Matt 22:45), and believed in his heart that God raised him from the dead (Acts 2:26-31). This meets Paul’s criteria for being saved in the New Testament sense (Rom 10:9). Also, when the Holy Spirit came upon David, in 1 Sam 16:13, He came upon Him “from that day forward.”. Sort of like Jesus being baptized, and the Holy Spirit remained on Him.

    No where else in the OT does the Holy Spirit actually remain with someone in this sense. It is not until John the Baptist that another exception appears. And here is another shocker to think about:

    It is part of the ministry of the Holy Spirit to convict the world of righteousness, sin and judgment, in relation to Christ. But in the days before the Holy Spirit was given, this function was accomplished through the ministry of John the Baptist (John 1:7). His ministry was an actual forerunner to the Holy Spirit’s in this way. This is why he, himself, needed to be filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother’s womb, and why he was called the greatest of the prophets: because his ministry both foreshadowed and facilitated the ministry of an actual member of the Godhead. This was even greater than Moses, who would be the next closest match (Deut 18:15-19).

    After Jesus came the apostles, and here’s a key verse to consider with them:

    "the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”
    (John 14:17)

    Even though Jesus had not yet ascended and the Holy Spirit was not yet given, He was still dwelling with the apostles in a special way, but still not in the full New Testament sense. My opinion is that this is similar to how He worked with people in the Old Testament, when He worked through them.

    Now let’s consider the time line very pointedly. In the day that follows, Jesus is crucified and then raised from the dead, of which the apostles became witnesses. This matches Paul’s definition of the gospel in 1 Cor 15:1-5, so this is when the salvation of the apostles takes place. At this point Jesus breathes o them and tells them t receive the Holy Spirit (John 20:22), or in other words they are sealed with the Holy Spirit unto redemption (Eph 4:30).

    We now begin to see a difference in the apostles. The Holy Spirit is working in their midst, to minister among themselves inwardly, but it is not yet a power to minister outwardly in the sense of becoming Jesus’ witnesses, in the sense of spiritual gifts, etc. This does not come for another 47 days, at Pentecost.

    So, using the apostles as an example, it is possible to have the Holy Spirit work in your life even though you are not yet saved. It is also possible to be saved and sealed, and yet not be filled in the sense of the baptism with the Holy Spirit.

    One last word. Regardless of church traditions, I wish everyone would allow the Bible to speak to this issue:

    "You stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did, so do you!”
    (Acts 7:51)

    Therefore, do not be like them. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead, so being ‘baptized in the Holy Spirit’ essentially means a deeper, more interpersonal walk with God. Please don’t anyone trade that for a man-made dogma of unbelief.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/10/2006 10:17 PM  

  • Cleaopas,
    You said Apostles were not saved until after resurrection. Do you not think they were saved in John 17?

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/10/2006 11:15 PM  

  • Since this blog is on auto-pilot we don't have to address the hostess, all the same for when she returns;

    Rose, you and that contender guy with the funny hat and sword (I'm so jealous of those graphics) were missed! To answer your question I think John 5:25-28 indicates these had to wait.

    Loren I really appreciate your answer, in particular the distinction of the work of the Holy Spirit over time on men, through men and then in believers.

    Jazzycat I think you've asked the right question concerning regeneration. From my perspective it seems Calvinist use the word to indicate the work of the Holy Spirit on the man prior to belief and others use it in reference to the indwelling of the Holy Spirit after the spirit birth through belief. I think it would be very helpful to make that distinction in our discussions.

    By Blogger Kc, at 5/11/2006 5:37 AM  

  • Rose, We miss you!

    I will join with Gayla's answer and couple that with Cleopas.

    I have been trying to work through something though in regards to regeneration possibly happening in the Old Testament:

    Romans 2:29- "but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcission is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God".

    When I read this verse I wonder if this truth stretched back into Old Testament times as well. Remember, there were many a Jewish person (Jew,means praise, by the way)that did NOT follow the LORD. There were a comparative few who did. Why the difference? Why during Elijah's time was there only 7000 men besides Elijah who did not bow the knee to Baal?

    When it says in Psalm 73:1-"Truely God is good to Israel, To such as are pure in heart." Do we not see a distinction here, between those who are natural descendants and those who are "spiritual"? Could it be that the difference lies in a "circumcised" heart?

    It would seem that David acknowledged the changed heart to be a work of God when he prays "Create in me a clean heart, O God" Psalm 51:10.

    Just some thoughts.

    Hurry back, Rose!

    By Blogger bluecollar, at 5/11/2006 7:46 AM  

  • Hi Jazzcat,

    You've asked a good question. In God's eyes, the Lamb was slain before the foundation of the world. What Jesus did at Calvary was the manifestation of that same truth in our own time/space/history.

    The sense in which I've offered that remark about the apostles finds the same sense of manifestation, but would not necessarily make it untrue at the earlier time. Hmmm. In fact, I've also said it was true of David at the earlier time. Hmm. What are your thoughts on that? Any insights?

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/11/2006 8:51 AM  

  • Good discussion. And very good insight, Mark and cleopas. This definitely calls for further study!

    By Blogger Gayla, at 5/11/2006 11:20 AM  

  • Cleopas,

    Rose asked, “were believers before Pentecost regenerated.”

    The answer to this depends on what the Bible teaches concerning the need, power, and source of regeneration. The view by non-Calvinists and Arminians is that faith in Christ can be achieved by man before being regenerated. This view would mean that regeneration is not needed to come to faith and that the source of regeneration is ultimately from man’s decision. Regeneration does not have power for salvation if one has already been saved before regeneration occurs. Therefore, this view holds that man is the source of regeneration that is not necessary for salvation and thus has no power in salvation. I do not understand exactly what regeneration accomplishes in this view.

    The reformed view, that I believe the Bible teaches, holds that God through the Holy Spirit regenerates a sinner with power before he has any faith whatsoever and in fact this regeneration is necessary before faith can occur. Therefore, regeneration is needed, comes with power, and God is the only source.

    I believe the Bible teaches that man’s condition changed one time at the fall, and that O.T. people were no different than N.T. people. Therefore, men in O.T. times needed the same regeneration that is needed today. Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about this necessity. The encounter that Jesus had with Nicodemus in John 3 happened well before Pentecost and Jesus does not speak of it like a future event. In fact, it sounds like it not only includes the present but the past well…. YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN! There is no qualification such as ‘starting now’, ‘in a short while’, ‘the day is coming when’. No Jesus says, “You must be born again to see the kingdom of God” period. In the O.T. God many times said, “I will reserve a remnant.” (example:1 Kings 19:18) This obviously meant that most of Israel was not saved as the remnant was small. If God were relying on the free will of the creature to come to faith without divine intervention, then how could he be sure there would be a remnant? The answer of course is that without divine intervention he would not know for sure and the passage would have said, “I hope there will be a remnant.” The book of Ester shows how God providentially preserved Israel from physical destruction. In this same way he intervened in spiritual matters to ensure a spiritual remnant. This was done through quickening by the Holy Spirit.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/11/2006 11:35 AM  

  • Adam, David had the infulence of the Holy Spirt and His power in his life, but he was not permanently indwellt as NT believers are.

    Pat, it is not certain that 'new spirit' means being indwellt. 'Spirit' can mean quite a number of things in the Bible.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/11/2006 12:06 PM  

  • Jazzycat, regneration is the reception of a new nature that is able to enter a relationship with God and to respond to His leading.

    OT regeneration differed from NT regeneration in its lack of completeness. The nature was not transformed to the same extent.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/11/2006 12:09 PM  

  • cleopas;
    excellent dissertation! thought provoking and insightful. i agree that the Holy Spirit can work in an individuals life even though they are not yet saved. The Spirit is the power of God...what CAN'T He do? God is free to work His plans with anyone, anywhere He pleases. More to your point, this "breathing" of the Spirit in John 20:22 i beleive, is paralleled in Luke 24:44-46: "Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.” And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And you are witnesses of these things. Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are imbued with power from on high.” This "breathing" gave "understanding" to the apostles and it seems to me would be a paralell occurrence to OT Spirit manifestations with prophets sans David. this is the only "difference" we see in the apostles after this event in the gospels. any further "guesswork" as to when these men were "regenerated" is pure conjecture and should be labeled by you as such. The apostolic age is over...we don't see the Spirit being given by the touch of anyone the way the apostles did in the book of Acts. The apostles were able(and will be as rulers of the 12 tribes in the kingdom) unique in God's plans and I don't think it is accurate to use their experiences with the Spirit as in John 20:22 as being directly correlated to anything having to do with us now.
    i would certainly disagree when you get to this: "It is also possible to be saved and sealed, and yet not be filled in the sense of the baptism with the Holy Spirit." You have gone on a "string" of hypotheticals and arrived at a conclusion stated as if certain, but it is, again, pure conjecture.

    By Anonymous pat, at 5/11/2006 12:34 PM  

  • Matthew you said.....
    "Jazzycat, regeneration is the reception of a new nature that is able to enter a relationship with God and to respond to His leading."

    1. Since everyone does not get the new nature, how is it received?
    2. It your answer is by faith, then why does a sinner that responds in faith to God’s call to salvation then need to be regenerated?
    3. If regeneration enables one to respond to God's leading how does one come to faith before this enabling?
    4. Do you believe Jesus in John 3 and Paul in Eph 2:4-5 are talking about regenerating people who have exercised faith on their own?

    In John 3:3 Jesus says you must be born again or you can’t even see the Kingdom of Heaven and in verse 6 makes it clear that man does not cause the rebirth when he says the spirit gives birth to spirit. In short Jesus is saying that one must be born again by God the Holy Spirit or he cannot even see the kingdom. Regeneration comes with power.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/11/2006 4:34 PM  

  • Jazzycat, I wonder if you are as tired of using these boring old arguments as I am answering them.

    One day it would be really great if Calvinists came up with some. Please do me a favour and come up with one, Jazzycat. Your ID is original, make your arguments go with this too.

    1. Faith
    2. Because nobody can give themselves a new nature. You cannot make yourself holy. God needs to transform you so that you are conformed to his ways.
    3. Through the working of the Holy Spirit in tandem with the preaching of the Word and by the wisdom and conscience that God gives to all.
    4. Depends what you mean by 'on their own'. The Holy Spirit works through the preaching of the Word (Acts 11:14-15, Eph 6:19), so one would seem to need the Holy Spirit to exercise faith.

    Jazzycat, you would never see the Kingdom (the Millennium) excepot that you believe.

    And certainly nobody causes themself to be Born-again. That is absolutely obvious. I am surprised that you need to tell me.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/11/2006 5:52 PM  

  • Well, to answer the question it is first necessary to search the OT and see if there is any mention of the Holy Spirit indwelling any individual.

    In Daniel 4, Nebuchadnezzar makes several mentions of Daniel (Belteshazzar) "the spirit of the holy gods" in him. But that could be interpreted simply as Nebuch's polytheistic mysticism, not an absolute recognition of God's Holy Spirit indwelling Daniel.

    In Isaiah 63, there are several mentions of the Holy Spirit, including the statement that "Then his people recalled the days of old, the days of Moses and his people—where is he who brought them through the sea, with the shepherd of his flock? Where is he who set his Holy Spirit among them...". But "among" isn't exactly the same thing as "indwelling" of an individual.

    More enlightening to my mind is Psalm 51, where David entreats God "Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me." I would surmise that if God's Holy Spirit could be "taken away" from David, that would mean David had God's Holy Spirit within him.

    Now, as to whether or not those in whom the Spirit dwelt before Pentecost were unregenerate or not, I would say instead that perhaps in some way the Spirit's working within their lives could not bring to completion the work of salvation, awaiting instead the fulfillment of Jesus' work on the earth. Of course, that still leaves that short span of time between Jesus' ascension and the Day of Pentecost.

    By Blogger Jeff H, at 5/11/2006 9:27 PM  

  • Hi Rose, these are good questions. You should ask them of Jeremy the next time he is bored. ;)

    Rom 8:23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.

    The Jewish feast of Pentecost was the second feast of "first fruits", and it came 50 days after the first feast of first fruits (see Leviticus 23).

    So, these two feasts sort of mirrored and foreshadowed 1: the resurrection of Jesus, the first fruits of the resurrection, and 2: the pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon the first believers.

    The ancient Jews celebrated Pentecost every year. They didn't know it, but they were acting out that day to come when the Holy Spirit would be poured out.

    So.... they had the foreshadowing of the indwelling of the Spirit, just like they had the foreshadowing of Christ's sacrifice and resurrection in the sacrifices and Passover feast and in the first feast of first fruits..

    But Christ hadn't actually been born, died, and risen yet, just as the Holy Spirit had not actually been poured out yet.

    All that rambling to say that there was no indwelling of the Spirit.

    But there was most certainly regeneration=salvation for those with faith (Heb 11) and with a genuine fear of God.

    Those are my thoughts Rose!

    By Blogger BugBlaster, at 5/11/2006 9:49 PM  

  • Matthew,
    Bear with me a little longer. I am also tired of these arguments, but I would like to follow this trail a ways with your belief system. WORDS HAVE MEANING and I would like to follow your thinking to its logical conclusion.

    You make contradictory statements such as your answer to my question #2: Why is regeneration needed if it truly follows saving faith? You said, “You cannot make yourself holy. God needs to transform you so that you are conformed to his ways.” Here you are saying regeneration is necessary to someone that has saving faith so they can be holy and conformed to his ways. This seems to be in conflict with the free grace position that no conformity or holiness is necessary (see your quote below). Do you see that your own two positions do not reconcile. Even the Dallas Theological Seminary that your theology is based on has this to say about a believers fruit: “We believe that divine, enabling gifts for service are bestowed by the Spirit upon all who are saved.” (All being the keyword here)

    You say regeneration follows saving faith and is necessary because God needs to transform you so that you are conformed to his ways. Therefore, I ask you three questions to further clarify your position:

    1. If a person does not show this fruit that results from a person being transformed as a result of regeneration, does he have salvation?

    2. If your answer is yes, then doesn’t this mean that regeneration is really not necessary or that sometimes God fails?

    3. If your answer is no, then does this not mean that fruit will flow from a saved person which contradicts your free grace position?

    These contradictions come up all the time on these blogs and I want you to please reconcile this conflict between these two contradictory positions. The following is a quote from your website by you about a book you read by Zane Hodges:

    ”Hodges maintains that discipleship is vitally important and identifies consequences for failing to be a disciple, however, he maintains that discipleship is not essential to benefiting from Christ's saving work.”

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/12/2006 12:16 AM  

  • Hi Pat,

    I agree with a lot of points you made, though I do have a few exceptions. Why, for instance, do you say that the ‘apostolic age' is over? I'm not even sure what that means, since it was never about the apostles, but Jesus Christ, and He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

    When the apostles laid on hands, Simon the sorcerer concluded that the Holy Spirit was given in that manner, but that is not what was happening. Jesus Christ is the one who baptizes in the Holy Spirit, and He did so on that occasion as well as all others. Check this out in Scripture and you'll see that laying on of hands is a form of vouching for someone in prayer, and that's what was really happening.

    I am all for labeling conjecture as such, but I would like to see the same from everyone. My statements tied Scriptural examples to doctrinal statements wherever possible, using Scriptures to explain the Scriptures, using doctrine to explain occurrences. Beyond that, when I used conjecture, it was a very educated guess but I still labeled it as my own thoughts.

    There are several examples in the Book of Acts where people were clearly saved but not yet filled with the Holy Spirit, in the sense of the baptism in the Holy Spirit. For example, do you believe that the people who heard the gospel preached by Peter at Pentecost were saved? I do. And yet the Bible doesn't say they were filled with the Spirit on that occasion. That did not occur until Acts 4:31. For other examples, see Act 8:4-17, 19:2.

    I know that a lot of churches teach that we are baptized in the Holy Spirit as soon as we are saved. Ideally these events would go together, but not necessarily so, and there is a difference. Being filled with the Holy Spirit is more than just saying that you are; it is a further, dynamic dimension of walking with the Lord that one may actually experience. I think it is very sad when some churches call this a ‘done deal' simply a bashful way to avoid discussing it further, because they are afraid to trust the Lord in this promise (That's how I see it). Again, I think that is so sad, especially since He is so eager to bring us there: "How much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!" (Luke 11:13).

    When modern churches take this sort of view, I see it as an ironic, modern proof that it is still possible to be saved, yet not Spirit-filled. Sadly, they are the living proof that my 'conjecture' is not too far from the mark.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/12/2006 1:44 AM  

  • 1. Yes.
    2. No. Regeneration does not remove our sinful nature. If we do not die to ourselves and walk in the Spirit, we will not beocme holy and we will die.

    The failure is man's not God's. You will next argue that if this is the case Gid msut have failed. However, you acknowledge that you sometimes sin. Is this any less a failure than the total moral ruin of a believer? Even most Calvinists acknowledge that a beleiver can experience complete moral ruin or apostasy temporarily.

    3. No. Fruit is not a certainty. The Bible exhorts us to display it and avoid the works of the flesh.

    There is no more of a contradiction involved in the Free Grace position than there is in the Calvinist position that regenerate believes can fall into sin.

    I am not sure why you have quoted my summary of Hodges' position.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/12/2006 3:28 AM  

  • Matthew,

    You maintain the following which cannot be reconciled:

    1. In your own words to my question why does a sinner need regeneration: “You cannot make yourself holy. God needs to transform you so that you are conformed to his ways.”

    2. You then said the following: “Fruit is not a certainty. The Bible exhorts us to display it and avoid the works of the flesh.”

    Matthew, do you not see that statements 1 & 2 cannot be reconciled. Your last attempt to do so was not even close. If regeneration of a believer is necessary because God needs to transform someone who already believes, then there will be some (though not perfect) fruit. Something has to give here Matthew, because to insist on maintaining these two positions is nonsense. The Calvinist position maintains that a true Christian will show some fruit due to regeneration by God’s power but by no means will they ever be without sin. The Dallas Theological Seminary also maintains this same view.

    Do you not see that these fundamental errors in your system can lead to gross perversions of the gospel? Your system is not only logically unsustainable, it is at odds with not only Calvinism, but Arminianism, dispensationalists, and orthodox Christianity in general. The free grace problem is confusing justification with sanctification.

    I respect your commitment to Jesus Christ and his gospel and I hope you will consider all that is happening with Antonio and reconsider if Zane Hodges has really seen things that Christian scholars for centuries have missed.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/12/2006 9:19 AM  

  • Jazycat, have you read 'Absolutely Free' by Zane Hodges? If you want to refute him, why not read his book.

    I fail to see how I am contradicting myself.

    We are transformed in regeneration so that we can be holy. This holiness comes by the working of Holy Spirit who indwells us. However, our old nature remains so that we may fail to produce fruit if we walk after the flesh.

    I think it very unlikley that a Christian would produce no fruit at all, but the Word of God does not rule out this possibility.

    There is no more contradiction in what I am saying than in your own belief that a regenerate person may sin and fail to produce as much fruit as they might have done.

    You seem to be arguing "If a believer has a new nature they will produce fruit". And yet you allow that somebody who has a new nature may fail to produce fruit upon occasion as a result of sin. The only difference between our position here is extent. I do not know how many times I have made this point to you. You have not answered it.

    Or do you combine your Calvinism with a Wesleyan belief in Entire Sanctification?

    Jazzycat, I seriously doubt that you are actualluy trying to understand my position. Forgive me, but it seems you have already concluded that I am wrong and you are prepared to ignore every argument I give in response.

    I cannot believe you would say "The free grace problem is confusing justification with sanctification," if you were actually paying attention to my comments.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/12/2006 10:19 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Here is your answer and it was in my last post:
    ”The Calvinist position maintains that a true Christian will show some fruit due to regeneration by God’s power but by no means will they ever be without sin.”

    This is called sanctification and all regenerated Christians will have sanctification. Regeneration has power and always produces a changed life though not perfect or without sin. This has nothing to do with justification, but free gracers seem to claim that the fruit of sanctification is a works salvation. Hence, they confuse justification with sanctification.

    You have affirmed that there is no certainty of fruit from a true believer and yet you maintain that regeneration is necessary to conform a person to God’s ways. There are only two possibilities here Matthew:
    1. Regeneration isn’t really necessary.
    or
    2. Regeneration sometimes fails to conform a person to God’s ways.

    WHICH IS IT?

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/12/2006 10:56 AM  

  • Neither.
    A person who is regenerated sometimes fails to conform to God's ways.

    In fact you actually agree with this statement yourself.
    You can hardly call sin conformity to God's ways.

    So we both agree that a regenerated person can fail to conform to God's ways.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/12/2006 1:41 PM  

  • A reiteration:

    Being indwelt by the Holy Spirit is NOT the same as being "filled with" (controlled by) the Spirit. Batpism in the Holy Spirit, Scripture unequivocally teaches, IS concomitant to Spiritual birth (which ALWAYS results in being indwelt by the Holy Spirit).

    Error upon error results from failure to distinguish the fact that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever from the fact that God has related to people in different times in different ways. How, in clear conscience, do those who choose to insist that the "sign gifts" haven't ceased, relying (erroneously) on our Lord's immutability, rationalize their failure to offer blood sacrifices and otherwise "keep" what's become known as the ceremonial law?

    By Anonymous jim mcdermott, at 5/12/2006 4:04 PM  

  • Matthew,

    I am going to sum up since you cannot or will not see that it is illogical to assert that regeneration is necessary for believers in order that they be transformed and then to also assert that in some rare cases no transformation will occur at all. You are in fact stating that something is necessary and then stating it’s not necessary. First let me list what we agree on concerning regeneration (I think):

    1. All saved people are regenerated.
    2. No unsaved people are regenerated.
    3. Regeneration is an act of God the Holy Spirit.
    4. Regeneration does not make a person perfect or even close to it. The best Saints will still have a sin problem.
    5. People are transformed in regeneration. (To change markedly the appearance or form of)
    6. Regeneration has a purpose.
    7. All that are regenerated will be saved. None will be lost.

    Now for the disagreements:

    1. I believe regeneration precedes faith and (you believe it follows faith.)
    2. I believe that while regeneration does not destroy man’s free agency, it comes with such power that it will literally make a spiritually dead person alive and enable them to come to faith in Christ and seek after righteousness.
    3. I believe that all regenerate people are a new creation and will have fruit that flows from this new life. (You believe that, “Fruit is not a certainty” but that it is “unlikely that a Christian would produce no fruit at all, but the Word of God does not rule out this possibility.”)
    4. I believe that the amount of fruit may vary from person to person and may even vary in a single person but it will be evident in all regenerate people. (You believe that most will show fruit but that it is possible for some to show no fruit at all and that this may bring physical harm and even death, but they are saved.) (I think this your view.)
    5. I believe without regeneration no one would be saved. (You believe that they are saved before regeneration occurs and in rare cases regeneration does not aid them at all)

    Summary:
    When I look at what Jesus said about being born again in John 3, I cannot imagine that he was speaking of a transformation that may not result in a changed life (2 cor 5:17). Apparently that is the free grace position.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/12/2006 4:24 PM  

  • Jazzycat, thankyou for your summary.

    I am unable to understand where you think I being illogical.

    I have not denied the necessity of the new birth.

    I thinl perhaps the difference between us is similar to the difference between the Keswick and the Reformed position on sanctification.

    You seem to understand regeneration as a transformation of th eold nature, while the Free Gracer, along with most Dispensationalists views regneration as the reception of a new nature without the cessation of the old nature.

    Tell me, Jazzycat supposing somebody were to say:

    "When I look at what Jesus said about being born again in John 3, I cannot imagine that he was speaking of a transformation that may not result in a life free of total holiness free from sin."

    How would you respond?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/12/2006 5:12 PM  

  • Hi Jim,

    Not sure if your remarks were directed at me, but please allow me an opportunity to answer in six parts:

    First, where do the Scriptures ‘unequivocally teach’ that baptism in the Holy Spirit is concomitant to Spiritual birth? For your argument depends on this.

    Second, how would you reconcile your answer to the Scriptural references I gave to the contrary? (Above).

    Third, your observation that ‘God has related to people in different times in different ways’ is only true in the sense of a division between Old and New Testament. The New Testament is called the dispensation of grace or the dispensation of the fullness of times (Eph 1:10, 3:2), which argues, as a premise, that another dispensation existed before the new one (Heb 9:15). If there were other ‘dispensations’ than these two, can you please quote the Scriptures that define them and set them forth in doctrinal parameters, or are we just accepting another opinion on this? (My critics require me to state opinions as such, so I have come to the expect the same, and am weary to the bone of accepting otherwise).

    Fourth, I don’t think it’s a mistake to rely on the Lord’s immutability (see Mal 3:6). I would think it a mistake to rely on anything else (Ps 11:3). Is there a verse you’re thinking of that says we shouldn’t trust Him at His word, or that He has changed His mind, or that we should build our faith on something else now? (John 12:48; 1 Cor 3:11) If so, that other opinion is sand, and I argue that a stand cannot be made on it (Matt 7:26).

    Fifth, you may have noticed that the signs of the gospel always point back to the gospel. They are the natural result of the death and resurrection of Christ being true, in a direct cause-and-effect relationship (Mark 16:20). So, do you believe that salvation has also ceased with the apostles? For this, too, is a result of His death and resurrection, in a direct cause-and effect relationship (Rom 5:10).

    If you don’t believe that salvation has ceased, why would you believe that the signs of the gospel have ceased? Do we have a different covenant than the apostles? Can you quote some unequivocal, doctrinal, creedal statements to that effect? (Acts 15:11).

    Sixth. The Old Testament foreshadowed the New (Matt 5:17). In that sense, the New did not abolish the Old, but fulfilled it. Why do we not offer blood sacrifices anymore? For the same reason the apostles didn’t. The ultimate sacrifice has been consummated in Christ, and nothing was left undone through this. (Heb 10:14) That takes us back to point #3.

    As a final thought, I try to be a reasonable person but I have a hard time warming up to opinions that look at plain, Scriptural statements and dismiss them by assuming ‘it has changed since then’, and that it no longer applies to us. No matter where else that line of reasoning would lead, it should set off major bells and warning sirens (1 John 2:27).

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/12/2006 11:21 PM  

  • hello aunty rose.

    i'm audrey's daughter.
    surprise!!!!!

    By Blogger ¤•*˚*` i§ãßê||ë '*˚*•¤, at 5/12/2006 11:24 PM  

  • Matthew,

    You asked me: (Tell me, Jazzycat supposing somebody were to say:
    "When I look at what Jesus said about being born again in John 3, I cannot imagine that he was speaking of a transformation that may not result in a life of total holiness free from sin."
    How would you respond?)…… I removed the first free as I do not think you meant it to be there.

    I would respond by telling them that their definition of regeneration misses the mark of Biblical regeneration. Their description is more like the process of glorification. Then, I would tell them that Biblical regeneration is what I have said in my earlier posts such as…… I believe that while regeneration does not destroy man’s free agency, it comes with such power that it will literally make a spiritually dead person alive and enable them to come to faith in Christ willingly and seek after righteousness. Regeneration always produces a changed life though not perfect or without sin.

    How would you respond?

    I in no way view regeneration as you concluded. I am much closer to your definition.
    Change two words and I agree with your definition of regeneration. Change reception to imputation and cessation to death and it reads…..views regeneration as the imputation of a new nature without the death of the old nature. In other words it is not received it is imputed and while the old nature remains it is no longer in control and has been weaken by this grace of rebirth. (Rom 6)

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/13/2006 12:46 AM  

  • Hi Rose~

    Wishing you a very Blessed Mother's Day!
    God bless you!

    By Blogger audrey`, at 5/13/2006 2:50 AM  

  • I think then, that the only real difference between us on sanctification, apart from its place in the order of salvation is whether it always produces fruit.

    I would thus seriously question the appropriateness of charging me with logical contradiction.

    You would do far better to prove your position that regeneration must always produce fruit.

    I absolutely agree with you that regeneration enables one to seek after righteousness. Nevetheless, the old nature remains and can inhibit this. The more we allow ourselves to sin, the more power th old nature has to assert itself. Hence the warning in 1 Cor 8 about sinning against the conscience. Sin can lead the believer to perish (verse 11).

    I think there are circumstances in which a person who is converted might be severely prevented from producing fruit and could come under the bondage of the flesh very quickly- if they are addicted to drugs or alcohol, involved in a life of prostitution or if they suffer from severe clinical depression or if they are in an abusive relationship.

    I would not deny the power or the Holy Spirit to lead such a convert from destructive situations, but there is the possbility that if the believer did not turn from sin, they could be lead captive by the flesh and fall into destruction even after their conversion. Such a person would be unlikely to produce much fruit if at all.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/13/2006 11:49 AM  

  • Matthew,

    I think the fact that regeneration will always produce some fruit was sufficiently proven over at Faith Classics during the James debate. I might also again point out that DTS, the seminary that you cited as the leading proponent of your dispensational theology agrees with my view.

    I can’t resist, I have to try one more time on your contradiction……..
    Contradiction: (logic) a statement that is necessarily false; "the statement `he is brave and he is not brave' is a contradiction"

    1. You have stated that in salvation faith comes first but regeneration is necessary.
    2. You have defined regeneration as a new nature that God gives so one can be transformed and conform to God’s ways.
    3. You have stated that sometimes a regenerated person fails to ever meet the definition of regeneration.

    Hence the contradiction, because you are saying that regeneration (which by your definition results in transformation and conformity) is a necessity for salvation and yet you also are saying a person can be saved and never have any works or show any transformation or conformity to God’s ways.

    Shorten you are saying: Transformation and conformity are necessary for salvation and transformation and conformity are not necessary for salvation.

    The following are some of your quotes that I gleaned your positions from:

    1. Jazzycat, regneration is the reception of a new nature that is able to enter a relationship with God and to respond to His leading.
    2. Because nobody can give themselves a new nature. You cannot make yourself holy. God needs to transform you so that you are conformed to his ways.
    3. A person who is regenerated sometimes fails to conform to God's ways.
    4. With regard to faith and works, I see no Scriptural data to suggest that faith must necessarilly result in works.

    We should remember that we do agree on many things.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/13/2006 3:40 PM  

  • Jazzycat, I have never stated that regeneration always results in a transformation of a person so that they are conformed to God's will.

    Regeneration confers the ability to be conformed to God's will through the working of the Holy Spirit.

    There is a huge difference between the potential to be conformed and being conformed.

    You do not seem to be even trying to understand my position.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/14/2006 4:41 AM  

  • Matthew,
    I think I understand your view now.

    1. Man has the ability to achieve saving faith before regeneration.

    2. Regeneration is a necessity that confers an ability to do be conformed further.

    3. However, this new ability in rare cases may fail to produce any results or 'fruit' but the person is truly saved without this new ability because he fails to use it.

    This is what I thought you believed but I wanted to confirm it without putting words in your mouth. Seems to me regeneration is really not a necessity to being saved at all if there are in rare cases absolutely no results that flow from it.

    This would be like a doctor saying you must have this medicine to be cured because it will give you the ability to do physical therapy, but if it fails and you do absolutely nothing, you will be cured anyway.

    The regeneration that I, DTS, and others believe in comes with 'POWER' and will always change a person for the better spiritually. It does not make them perfect, but they are changed, have a new heart, and will show a different life. They may fall for a season and God may discipline them (as you correctly pointed out), but they will repent and return to the fold.

    Over at my blog, I have summerized a true faith compared to a false, dead faith that Jesus and James both had comments about.

    Matthew, we just differ on this and I feel no need to beat this dead horse anymore.

    Jazzycat

    By Blogger jazzycat, at 5/14/2006 8:39 AM  

  • Rose,

    Such deep things you ask us to ponder on.

    Happy Mother's Day and I pray your trip was a blessing to you.

    Mary

    By Blogger mas, at 5/14/2006 1:58 PM  

  • cleopas;
    Acts 8:17-"17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit." This certainly sounds like the apostles had the UNIQUE ability, non existant since that time, to administer the Holy Spirit. You would have to believe that the apostles would be led by the Spirit in whom they gave it to and all these Samarians (who had already been baptised in the name of "the Lord Jesus") would have had to been led by the Spirit to confess His name. (this is one of the most interesting episodes in acts and doesn't bode well for arminians-acts 8:1-17)
    this The passage we started on originally, also describes a unique ability, non existent since then:
    John 20:22-24-"22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” Name a man alive since the apostles who could forgive sins? i reiterate my original point: The apostles experiences with the Spirit were unique and i don't think we can use those experiences to make correlations as to how the Spirit works on/with men since then.
    You wrote:"I know that a lot of churches teach that we are baptized in the Holy Spirit as soon as we are saved. Ideally these events would go together, but not necessarily so, and there is a difference. Being filled with the Holy Spirit is more than just saying that you are; it is a further, dynamic dimension of walking with the Lord that one may actually experience."
    This sounds like a jumbled mass of confusion (no offense intended.)The topic, though...about being saved as opposed to being "baptised in the Spirit" is of keen interest to me. no one is "saved" until they are "baptised in the Spirit." The Spirit is God's Spirit, to grant to whomever He chooses. I don't think it is "free for the taking." 80% of the country call themselves "christian" and may say they are "saved", but how many would say they have been "born again?" it is the same thing (rom 8:30) and these people are pretending. I have read stats on that (people claiming to be born again) they report the figure to be 3-4%. Confessing Jesus as Christ during early church meant social ostracism, persecution and even death. It doesn't mean that now. It often means that "i was raised in a Christian home." This is why we have 80% of the country claiming christianity or being "saved", but where is the fruit of the Spirit? It is certainly more than claiming to be saved...it is being "called" by God; it is being "appointed to eternal life"; it is being a "lamb" and "following" Jesus (you go jazzycat.)This "following" the Good Shepherd is what you called "walking with the Lord." The bible calls it "sanctification" and it is the fruit of the Spirit; it requires co operation to an extent; this co operation is what leads to rewards or lack thereof.
    God/Jesus makes "Christians"; God/Jesus "saves." Until you are "sealed by the Spirit, you are "un" sealed (2 cor 1:22) If you dont have the Spirit "you are not His" (rom 8:9.)

    By Anonymous pat, at 5/14/2006 4:13 PM  

  • "Man has the ability to achieve saving faith before regeneration."

    I think this rather ignores the role of the Holy Spirit in the preaching of the Word.

    Regeneration is a necessity because it was never God's intention to leave saved sinners where they were. He has chosen those hwo have believed on Christ to be sanctified and to be conformed to His will. Hence they are made regenerate.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 5/14/2006 6:19 PM  

  • Hi Pat,

    Here’s something I’d like you to think about. Jesus breathed on the apostles and told them “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22). But He would also tell them, about 40 days later, to wait in Jerusalem until they were endued with power from on High:

    "for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."
    (Acts 1:5).

    So obviously these two occurrences were not the same. Even the apostles had received the Holy Spirit, but were not yet baptized in the Holy Spirit, which is a further dimension of walking with God. So what was happening in the meantime, and what practical difference did it make? Let’s use doctrine to explain those events:

    Jesus said that when the Spirit of truth had come, he would guide them into all truth (John 16:13). This is something that was already happening between the Resurrection and Pentecost. We know this because the same passage tells us so:

    “ . . . until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen . . .”
    (Acts 1:2)

    After the resurrection, yet still before Pentecost, the apostles also seemed to have a much better grasp of the Scriptures, especially in regard to the Messianic prophecy (see Acts 1:15-22; John 15:26). It would have been amazing to hear something so insightful from Peter or any of the other apostles before this time.

    During this period the Holy Spirit ministered to them inwardly, to the themselves, and the apostles were waiting before preaching the gospel as an outreach. Because ultimately, that is the difference the baptism in the Holy Spirit would make. He would give them power to become witnesses of Christ in an outward sense, as a witness to the world.

    When you say that the apostle’s experience with the Holy Spirit was unique, you really have nothing to set this on. There is no doctrine that said it would cease. At no point in the New Testament was there an example that it had ceased. And God is on record for saying that He would notify us of such things in advance (Amos 3:7).

    Now in one way, I don’t blame you for your conclusion. When I was saved, but not yet baptized in the Holy Spirit, I would have completely agreed with you. I knew that I had a relationship with God, and I would have sworn that this included the baptism in the Holy Spirit somewhere along the line. But when this second event actually did occur in my life, the difference was astounding -- especially in that I now had the power to become His witness. I shared the gospel with hundreds of people, in personal, individual episodes, over the next years.

    Now it is true that if anyone does not have the Spirit of God, he is not His. But this is not talking about the baptism in the Holy Spirit, it is talking about the initial sealing in the Holy Spirit like the apostles had, when Jesus breathed on them. So I hope you understand my perspective on that more clearly.

    One last thing to think about. The Holy Spirit is not simply a function, He is the third person of the Godhead. Therefore when Jesus baptizes us in the Holy Spirit, or with the Holy Spirit, it is not simply a functional event. It is essentially an interpersonal connection with the Lord in a deeper way. You’re not more saved or less saved because of it, but it means He is entrusting you with something greater, and He intends to work with you and through you as a witness of Jesus.

    And by the way, yes I do believe that all of the spiritual gifts are for our time. But their purpose is to bear witness of Jesus, and they are improperly used when this is not kept in mind. When it is kept in mind, they are beautiful, as He intended them. I have seen it both ways.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/15/2006 9:15 PM  

  • Cleopas,
    When you say:

    "Now in one way, I don’t blame you for your conclusion. When I was saved, but not yet baptized in the Holy Spirit, I would have completely agreed with you."

    This is actually an odd, fractious doctrine strictly your own that slices all of the baptizing, saving and indwelling of the Holy Spirit into ways that scripture does not dilineate and but rather simply puts off other believers, by asking them to wonder what emotion they should be looking for next as a sign that their salvation or understanding is real. Your doctrine above is very personalized to yourself. If it is affective in your witnessing to unbelievers then fine, but to me it is reckless with scripture.

    Todd

    By Blogger Todd, at 5/16/2006 10:51 AM  

  • cleopas;
    thank you for your comments. you are inciteful and i appreciate the time you take in crafting your replies, but we will just have to agree to disagree. i do not believe there are a multitudes of people walking around "saved" that God does not intend to use as witnesses. I THINK God knows who He intends to save and He works events in their lives as a means of teaching them and ministering to them to make them useful to Him for a particular job He has planned for them in this life (age) and the next.
    We are always baptised "into" something. "Spirit baptism" is being baptised into the body of Christ. If you are not "in" the body of Christ you are not part of it. I don't see how you can be "saved" yet be separate from the body of Christ. When you become part of the body you are given spiritual gifts to perform a function in the body as well as to witness the gospel to all people set in your path .
    I am sure there are many people who would disagree with the way you are applying Amos 3:7, but I don't want to go into it. I think it is obvious the apostles experiences with the Spirit as they exited the age of law and helped usher in the age of grace are quite different than ours. In the kingdom they will be ruling the 12 tribes of Israel..quite different from us then too. I dont have time to look up all the passages backing up my opinions here and i apologize. I do respect your thoughtful exegesis, though. This is a mole hill. Im sure we agree on all the essentials.
    Pat

    By Anonymous pat, at 5/16/2006 11:39 AM  

  • Hi Todd,

    Hmm, let's see. I quoted dozens of scriptures in making my case, using doctrinal statements to explain actual, scriptural examples. But you disagree based on . . . Hmm, I don't see a single Scripture you've quoted.

    Pardon my saying so, but your opinion seems very personalized to yourself. If it works for you, fine, but don't you feel it's a little reckless, not only to form your beliefs without scripture, but subjectively deny the ones that are?

    Also, I don't see any case I've made about depending on emotions and feelings. Now where would a perspective like that be coming from?

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/16/2006 2:27 PM  

  • Cleopas,
    When you said,
    "When you say that the apostle’s experience with the Holy Spirit was unique, you really have nothing to set this on."

    I just thought that in my opinion it should be obvious that the apostles experience with the Holy Spirit was very unique. Jesus breathed on the apostles and told them they had the power to forgive. That is very unique and totally unlike your experience.

    But in the words of yours I cited in my last comment it sounds to me like you consider that you can be saved and still not yet possess the Holy Spirit.

    "When I was saved, but not yet baptized in the Holy Spirit,"


    If that's what you are saying then that strikes me as unusual. It would not surprise me if there are men's doctrines that abound with that belief but that would indeed be an embellishment on scripture. That's all. Sorry if that seems a little harsh.

    By Blogger Todd, at 5/16/2006 3:35 PM  

  • And Cleopas,

    I didn't even answer your question.
    A perspective like that would be coming from me after seeing you take your own personal experience and use it to illustrate the different ways in which you were indwelled by the Holy Spirit when actually it, from my perspective, was just a different stage of spiritual growth and maturity that you were experiencing.

    Heartily, Todd

    By Blogger Todd, at 5/16/2006 3:59 PM  

  • Rose,
    Please pardon my unsolicited opinionizing here without even a greeting to you. Thank you for the use of your space here! Todd

    By Blogger Todd, at 5/16/2006 4:02 PM  

  • Hi Rose,

    Welcome back!

    Hi Todd,

    Very well, delete the part about my personal experience, the rest is all that matters anyway.

    Hi Pat,

    You have a good heart, peace on my end too.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 5/16/2006 4:11 PM  

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