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

Monday, November 20, 2006

My Irrational Question

Is the sinner ...who simply trusts Christ in a moment of conviction over the truth of the Christ's sacrifice and His authority to offer salvation NOT saved ... unless he submits to the Lordship of Christ and is categorically ready to give up his blatant sinful lifestyle?

I asked this question of Phil Johnson on his 400 comment post that he claims represents a done argument (????).

He said it was an irrrational question. What do you think?

It seems LS proponents would answer the question in the affirmative. IOW, such a person cannot be saved. One must commit their life and turn from all known sin in order to receive Christ.

They feel the question has been answered once and for all and the discussion is over.

Yes, and Hillary Clinton is taking measurements in the oval office ... for new window treatments.

100 Comments:

  • Rose, in your question you said 'saved'. Yet you did not give any signeficiation as to what 'saved' you were talking about. I am sure you are well aware of the different types of 'saved' there are within Scripture. We have people that are saved, Paul says that we are being saved, and we likewise know of the time when we will be saved.

    So I think it impossible to answer your question without you first defining which aspect of salvation you are talking about.

    After all, you used 'saved' in the past tense, and since salvation is more than something done in the past, you HAVE to be referring to a past tense aspect of the entire work of God that we call Salvation (past, present and future).

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/20/2006 1:43 PM  

  • Rose, I believe you are talking about justification--being born again.

    My problem with the "Lordship" doctrine is that it crams sanctification into justification.

    How can I quit sinning unless I am saved?

    I cannot swallow that I must quit sinning in order to be saved. However, I must be willing for God to remove sin from my life. As the country preachers say, "God won't save a rebel."

    By Blogger John Rush, at 11/20/2006 1:49 PM  

  • John, how do you know that Lordship doctrine attempts to cram sanctification into justification, and it is not just that the equivocal usage of 'salvation' to describe both acts confuses those upon both sides (Lordship and Freegracers), bringing about argument where argument shouldn't be.

    I have found that in most advocates of Lordship that I speak to and hear they are speaking of the sanctification aspect of salvation. That is the 'saved' they are talking about. They emphasize the idea that God does sanctify His people.

    And yet the Freegracers seem to be focusing upon the justification aspect. They fight to the death to hold on to the clearly biblical truth that one is justified only through faith.

    The problem is that both camps use 'salvation' and 'saved' to describe these two different aspects. They are both speaking about the same salvation, yet different aspects of this one act.

    You say:

    I cannot swallow that I must quit sinning in order to be saved. However, I must be willing for God to remove sin from my life. As the country preachers say, "God won't save a rebel."

    And I don't think any (save the most ardent and confused Lordshipper) would say that you must quit sinning in order to be justified. They recognize completely that those who are justified do sin afterward. They do not deny John's words that if a Christian says they do not sin, they lie.

    However, if we understand sanctification to be 'being saved' from sin, and the snares of sin, then how can you say that you cannot swallow that you must quit sinning in order to be saved from sin or the snares of sin (which is sanctification, also salvation). Isn't that quite silly talk?

    I want to ask you about this:

    However, I must be willing for God to remove sin from my life. As the country preachers say, "God won't save a rebel."

    What exactly would you call this 'removing sin from your life' that is done by God? Would you call this being saved from your sin, i.e. salvation?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/20/2006 2:24 PM  

  • Hi Sofyst,
    No, I don't mean "saved" in the sense of "saved from temporary calamity" ;~) I mean eternally saved or born-again, given the new life. This life cannot be taken away.

    JRUSH!
    So good to see you brother!
    Yes indeed, justification. I concur the LS blur the lines between justification and sanctification ... and I would add that they also mix up salvation and discipleship.
    Salvation is a free gift, discipleship is costly - with that point I definately agree with Free-Grace.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/20/2006 2:39 PM  

  • Rose, my next question is whether you think the act of God whereby I am continually saved from sin daily is 'salvation'?

    Everytime that I am saved from the bondage of sin by God, would you say this is 'salvation'?

    Or do you limit 'salvation' to only that one time moment when the person is justified before God?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/20/2006 3:07 PM  

  • "Is the sinner ...who simply trusts Christ in a moment of conviction over the truth of the Christ's sacrifice and His authority to offer salvation NOT saved ... unless he submits to the Lordship of Christ and is categorically ready to give up his blatant sinful lifestyle?"

    If the believer must do anything, then Christ's work is not sufficent.

    It is a passive trust that appropriates Christ's work, not any kind of surrender of the will or change of conduct.

    There are two typical Lordship responses to this assertion and they are quite different.

    1) Faith is not passive trust but it includes a surrender of the will.

    2) Faith does not (necessarilly?) involve a surrender of the will, but the person is regenerated before they exercise faith and so they will submit to Christ at their conversion.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/20/2006 3:34 PM  

  • Rose,

    I would say that it definitely is not a theological requirement.

    But I would say, as well, that many have a concommitant emotional result that would place them, for a time, under a conviction of sin that brings with it a desire to turn from sin.

    The problem comes when assurance of salvation is experimentally ascertained by measuring one's affections.

    The feeling of conviction and desire to live for Christ for many may be short lived. If they do not rely upon looking to Christ in His promise alone for the objective, certain possession of assurance, they will look to their feelings, to their works, and so forth, and their life will either be lived at a performance based level to attain assurance, or apathy and depression may come due to the lack of affections.

    Jesus offers an extremely appealing gift: eternal life, guaranteed eternal well-being. Uncertainty about one's eternity is drive sufficient for desiring such a gift.

    All men and women are wired differently. To attach inevitable feelings, affections, desires, to the appropriation of an absolutely free gift that is received solely by trusting Jesus for it, is to blatantly define that appropriation by faith + emotion (which LS would even go farther to allegiance). All do not share the same reactions to circumstances.

    The LS exclude many based upon their lack of zeal, desire, commitment, considering them in need of salvation, when in fact, these persons are infants, never having progressed, and need some biblical teaching on the Christian life, discipleship, accountability, and the abundant life.

    submitted for your approval,

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/20/2006 5:11 PM  

  • Your violating the rules Rose. You aren't allowed to argue about this anymore as the discussion has been singlehandedly won by his honorableness Phil himself. Stop violating rule number 411.

    Also...it is unlawful for you to believe that or even bring it up.

    Be sensitive. He wants to be president of DTS one day so he can say "See, I Told You So" to all those free gracers.

    Jonathan has been doing a recon for him:-)

    By Blogger Bhedr, at 11/20/2006 6:44 PM  

  • Rose,
    Of course that sinner is saved. The sinner must simply know who Christ is and, if the sinner would chose to be saved, then he may be.

    Even man's persuasive words can't reasonably alter that fact.

    Listen to these people pile up mountains of words in order to try and refute the simplicity of Christ.

    Christ nor any of the apostles said that how we are saved is a mystery so beware listening to anyone who would present it in some sort of mysterious and hard to understand form.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/20/2006 8:20 PM  

  • The scripture says:

    "Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ--this Jesus whom you crucified." (Acts 2:36)

    It is not our job to make Him Lord ... we need only acknowledge and submit to His lordship. We do this via the faith that He has authored (Hebrews 12:2) in us.

    By Anonymous Kansas Bob, at 11/20/2006 8:22 PM  

  • shouldn't that be turned around?
    you receive Christ, then in him you commit your life and turn from all know sin! if you can turn from sin on your own , why would you need Christ? if I tryed to do this on my own, before I could receive Christ, I would be on my way down, cause I couldn't do it!

    Rose, hope you are doing ok!
    and hope you, JW and the kids have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

    By Blogger jel, at 11/20/2006 8:48 PM  

  • Hi Rose,

    You may have seen the old tract which shows two circles, each with a throne in the center. Jesus is inside the first circle, but 'self' is still on the throne. This is said to represent the 'carnal' Christian.

    In the other circle, Jesus is on the throne itself, and 'self' is in submission at His feet. This is said to be the spiritual Christian. In effect the tract is saying, "Sure, you've made Jesus your savior; but now make Him your Lord as well." as if His Lordship was a further 'option'.

    It is really a ridiculous and destructive heresy to suggest that anyone could be saved without confessing Jesus as their Lord, as though His Lordship was a separate matter (see 2 Peter 2:1) So here's the definitive answer to your question:

    ". . . that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved."
    (Rom 10:9)

    Paul says you must confess Jesus as Lord in order to be saved. So how can anyone be saved without this? (But, let me guess! Someone will start making points using the tenants of Calvinism, or some other ism, as their proof text, instead of using the Scriptures. In their own mind, these arguments will 'trump' those plainly stated Scriptures so that they must go away. Hmm.)

    Oh yes, one more loose end. The true definition of a 'carnal' Christian is one who looks to men for leadership of the church (1 Cor 3:3) instead of looking to Christ Himself (Eph 1:22).

    If anyone wants to argue on this one, I seriously suggest you pray about it first. But thanks for letting me express myself and I hope you're doing well!

    Loren

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 11/20/2006 10:24 PM  

  • You can't entirely turn from sin even with Christ. You can't turn from sinful flesh, you are sinful flesh and always will be here on earth. Even Christ can't turn you from sin, you will sin in spite of Christ and being n Him. If you let Him, Christ will set you free from the body of this death or bondage to condemnable sin and death with His Spirit of life. Hallelujah!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/20/2006 10:30 PM  

  • Cleopas,

    I don't think any FG advocates would refuse to acknowledge Jesus as Lord. He is Lord whether we obey Him or not. In fact that verse Rom. 10:9 has always been a comfort to me.

    However, there must be a distinction between the simple faith of trusting Christ alone for eternal life and walking in obedience to Him as our Lord. We are not saying that taking Him as Lord is an optional step, it is required of all christians.

    But if a convert thinks that their surrender to the Lordship of Christ "earns" them salvation, they have in fact worked for it. Rather, just as a son is to obey his father, so too we as children of God are to submit to Him as Lord.

    The problem comes when we qualify our salvation by our actions of surrender.

    By Blogger Jim, at 11/20/2006 11:21 PM  

  • "Yes, and Hillary Clinton is taking measurements in the oval office ... for new window treatments"

    Rose, please don't even talk like that. Between her and Obama I am ready to plunge into depression.

    May God send a man who will stand for righteousness in the office of president.

    By Blogger Jim, at 11/20/2006 11:23 PM  

  • Brian, you crack me up. Great sense of humour.

    By Blogger Jim, at 11/20/2006 11:26 PM  

  • Good post.

    By Blogger H K Flynn, at 11/21/2006 12:17 AM  

  • Hi Rose,

    A reply to Jim, if I may:

    I respect your conciliatory reply, But let's take it a step further to see its end:

    'But if a convert thinks that their surrender to the Lordship of Christ "earns" them salvation, they have in fact worked for it.'

    Would it not be just as logical to say that if a convert thinks his conversion has "earned" his salvation, he has in fact worked for it?

    Or again, Matthew said:

    "If the believer must do anything, then Christ's work is not sufficent."

    Does that include the believer's act of believing? Or need he not do so?

    Jesus died for everyone, but not everyone will be saved. A line is drawn telling us who will be saved and who will not; and in Scripture, this line always depends on our response (ex: Romans 10:9; Acts 2:21), and the ultimate purpose of the response is in building a relationship:

    "And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent."
    (John 17:3)

    Jesus doesn't just want to lord it over us, He wants to build a relationship in which we are trusting Him:

    "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'
    (Matt 7:23)

    The Greek word for 'know' is ginosko, which implies an acquaintance, a two-way relationship. If this doesn't ever form, He will say that He never knew us, and the end will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

    So that's one thing I really dislike about FG. It constantly seems to portray God with a stiff arm out toward us, and every time we try to draw near Him we are told that our hope is false, that He is better known at a distance, that less is more, that sort of thing. Or at least, that's what it seems to amount to (no matter the claims to the contrary).

    In fact, I think this is one area in which the whole Protestant reformation has led to excess. We are not, of course, saved by works. Yet between faith and works a no-man's-land has emerged and remains unclaimed. How would you categorize loyalty to God, for example? Or submission to Him? Or love for Him? Or obedience to Him? Or the response of a clean conscience toward Him (such as baptism)? Are these faith, works, or something in between?

    I think these 'gray' areas are the essence of a relationship emerging from faith. If they are not in the 'faith' category already, they certainly do not belong in the 'works' category either, and I for one am willing to claim them (James 2:18).

    Not to put too fine a point on this, but I've quoted Scriptures throughout, and referred to others. "For do I now persuade men, or God?" (Gal 1:10). The task is to convince men that God is spokenn rightly through His word, not vice versa. But am I hearing Scriptural persuasion in reply, or the tenants of another ism?

    Also, a question for Rose. Is this similar to the 'Lorship salvation' booklet you've recently read? That would be a curious name for it, if it procluds confessing Him as Lord or renders this confession irrelevant.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 11/21/2006 1:23 AM  

  • Cleopas, believing is not doing anything at all; it is simply a passive acknowledgment that He has given one eternal life.

    Thomas believed when He saw the risen Christ. Did He do anything? Know He just looked with His eyes and believed. Likewise, the Christian hears or reads the message of eternal life through Jesus Christ and believes it.

    The Bible never identifies relationship as the basis for salvation. In fact this would be hopeless, for God cannot have a relationship with one who is lost in sin. A person cannot have a relationship until she stands justified in Christ. And justification comes by faith and nothing else.

    If anything must be done to be saved, then Paul's message of justifcation by faith alone means nothing.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/21/2006 6:09 AM  

  • Hi Rosie,
    Good question! Good thread!

    Hi everyone.

    Gotta go...

    brother John

    By Blogger J. Wendell, at 11/21/2006 7:21 AM  

  • Hi Matthew,

    If what you’re saying is true, then, could not one passively disbelieve or remain in ignorance, and still be saved? This person, too, would be doing nothing at all. The difference is that a response occurs and a relationship is formed by way of it.

    Jesus came that we may be reconciled to God (2 Cor 5:18-20). Relationship is the core concept of everything the Bible discusses in relation to salvation:

    "For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's will save it.”
    (Mark 8:35)

    The only way to miss this is to do so on purpose, in an effort to thwart the clear understanding. But why would any true Christian ever take that approach? Why would anyone who loves the ord settle for an arrangement without the relationship? Is it about the system, or the savior? The plan, or the Person?

    I have to rush to work, sorry I don’t have time for more. But please include my former Scriptural quotations as well, as think about it. Scriptures. Not the tenants of an ism. We are judged by His word, not Calvin’s or Hdges, etc. Thanks.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 11/21/2006 9:29 AM  

  • Rose,
    How can a person's believing that Christ has done it for you be doing anything at all? Through no logical exercise can you come to that conclusion. And Paul or I should say Christ Himself precludes the foolish who in some contorted way feel that they may boast by telling them who their boasting should be in. This is why God has given some as teachers that they may teach others these concepts clearly stated in the word. We are as things molded from clay wherein there is no room for boasting.

    The bible does not say 'believe and then build a relationship until you've earned salvation'. It says you have a relationship upon believing and are sealed in it by the Spirit.

    Any gray areas in scripture are not available for us to fill in according to our own desires. The journey from being a babe in Christ to being mature in Him does not have a gray area in the middle where you are alone and unsaved. We do not even understand our own minds much less the spirit of another man and so I'm going to guess there are a lot of people who appear to us to be babes in Christ who stumble on their way into the cradle never making it in. And in the meantime, there should be no confusion to anyone who has read the word but to walk in the newness you've been freely given and be loyal, be faithful, be obedient, love, submit as one worthy to be called the son of the living God. Why wreck all of those directives by requiring people to do it on their own, without the aid of the Spirit, dangling salvation out there somewhere in the conditional future?

    Why do these people want to make it so gray and lacking in the sufficiency of belief Rose?

    Rose, oh my, what a interesting time to be pregnant now as the holiday's start to arrive.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/21/2006 10:18 AM  

  • I do not believe that one can be saved apart from the lordship of Jesus Christ. I do find it ironic that so many Calvinists claim to believe that you must submit to Christ in order to be saved. Don't they also say that man has no choice in the matter? If he has no choice, how does he submit? Does the Holy Spirit draw him into salvation or drive him into it?

    Someone needs to connect the dots.

    By Anonymous Gordon Cloud, at 11/21/2006 10:40 AM  

  • Hey everyone! I had no idea that I would get this many thoughts tossed my way. Thanks you all. You have sparked my mind. I want share the thoughts that each comment has sparked, but I am at work and I will wait until I take a break over the next few hours. I will be back!

    Jim,
    I was thinking about my reference to Hillary and I think it would have been better if I had said,
    "Yes, and Al Gore has been the REAL president for the last 6 years." ;~)

    Thanks, Jim! I am sick at the thought of what could be around the corner for this country. We must pray.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/21/2006 10:43 AM  

  • Gordon,
    I agree. I have also wondered how that Calvinists can hold to two such opposite approaches. I think I have figured it out, though. (Calvinists may correct me if I am wrong.) They say it is because God gifts the person with the real faith that WILL WILL WILL give up the sin that they say cannot be clung to by a real elect person. There is just not a lot of room for personal responsibility, but yet their preaching on Lordship would seem to burden people with a lot. I think they would compel men to give up sin and submit etc... to receive Christ and then, if the person cannot deal with such demands, they would quietly say to themselves "that one must not be chosen."

    I think the Bible way is to present the free gift of God. If one receives Christ and is born again by faith, we must encourage that one to look to the Scriptures. They must fellowship and pray and learn and they will grow in the knowledge of the LORD and Savior, Jesus Christ. This will produce the fruit and the submitting to His Lordship. It is a matter of horse and cart.

    Oh, my, look at the time.

    I will be back in a while.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/21/2006 10:50 AM  

  • Hi Rose~

    Cleopas,

    You have asked a number of questions and I will try to answer them.
    __________________________
    You asked:
    "Would it not be just as logical to say that if a convert thinks his conversion has "earned" his salvation, he has in fact worked for it?
    ___________________________

    Our conversion is a result of faith operating in us. This faith is not something we initiate, but rather comes from hearing the Word of God.

    "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." Rom. 10:17

    "For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Rom. 10:11

    "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."

    ...and here is why we must preach the gospel.
    "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?"
    __________________________
    Cleopas:
    "Jesus died for everyone, but not everyone will be saved.
    __________________________

    This fact alone should drive us to our knees in prayer and put urgency to our efforts at reaching the lost.
    __________________________
    Cleopas:
    "How would you categorize loyalty to God, for example? Or submission to Him? Or love for Him? Or obedience to Him? Or the response of a clean conscience toward Him (such as baptism)? Are these faith, works, or something in between?"
    ___________________________

    As believers we are to walk by faith. This means everything we do is a matter of faith. By faith we obey the Lord, surrender to Him and obey Him. These are not things an unregenerated person can do.

    But without faith it is impossible to please Him... Heb. 11:16

    Jesus said that if we love Him, we will keep His commandments. Why do we love Him? Because He first loved us.

    Do all christians always obey, surrender, and keep His commandments? Sadly, no we don't. Therefore the scripture says;

    For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. Prov. 3:12

    For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. Heb. 12:6

    I probably haven't answered all your questions but this comment was getting too long. Maybe we can try one question and answer at a time.

    God bless,
    Jim

    By Blogger Jim, at 11/21/2006 11:49 AM  

  • Rose, my next question is whether you think the act of God whereby I am continually saved from sin daily is 'salvation'?

    Everytime that I am saved from the bondage of sin by God, would you say this is 'salvation'?

    Or do you limit 'salvation' to only that one time moment when the person is justified before God?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/21/2006 12:43 PM  

  • To Loren or whoever:

    What, exactly may I ask, is

    Acknowledging Jesus as Lord?

    What does that mean?

    Is it not interesting, Loren, that in Romans 10:9 that it conditions "salvation" on a work? It is a "confessing with the mouth".

    If you look forward in the context, you will find that "All who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved".

    Have you ever done a study of those who "call on the name of the Lord" and like phrases?

    It is the activity of those people who already have an eternal relationship with God, in the OT: redeemed saints, in the NT: a Christian activity.

    Further along in the context, Paul states that one cannot even call upon the name of the one in whom they have not believed.

    "Calling on the Name of the Lord" is the appeal for salvation from those who are already eternally saved. It is, in essence, saving the saved.

    Calling on the Name of the Lord, or Confessing the Lord Jesus with the mouth, is an appeal to Christ for temporal salvation.

    If anyone wants to argue on this one, I seriously suggest you pray about it first. Then do a word study on "calling on the name of the Lord" and like phrases, and follow the context of Romans 10 (which is in the context of Paul's discourse on Israel). Paul desires full-orbed salvation for Israel, which is far more than justification-salvation. Notice Romans 10:10 that in believing one is justified, but in confession (with the mouth, appealing to the Lord Jesus) one is saved.

    Paul desired the full-orbed salvation of the Jews:

    1) Justification salvation
    2) Salvation from God's temporal wrath

    Writing this made me think of Godly King Josiah who said:

    2 Kings 22:13
    3 "Go, inquire of the LORD for me, for the people and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the LORD that is aroused against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us."

    Paul wants the full-orbed salvation for the Jews which requires:

    1) Faith in Jesus Christ for eternal justification
    2) Public identification and appeal to the Lord Jesus for temporal deliverance from wrath

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/21/2006 6:37 PM  

  • Hi Jim,

    Those were some excellent answers.

    By Blogger Gojira, at 11/21/2006 7:01 PM  

  • Hi Cleopas,

    If I may, are you part of this emergant church stuff? No reason for asking. Just curious.

    By Blogger Gojira, at 11/21/2006 7:06 PM  

  • Hi Rose,

    I think my hypothetical arguments might have confused some folks. They are not thoughts I’m defending; instead I’ve been trying to challenge them. So here’s what I really believe.

    Webster’s defines salvation as a spiritual rescue from sin and death. In other words it is seen as a program, plan or provision. But I think that in Scripture, salvation is more properly defined as a Person, who is Jesus Christ the righteous:

    I will praise You, for You have answered me, and have become my salvation. The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This was the LORD'S doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.”
    (Psalm 118:21-23)

    Jesus is the salvation of God (Luke 2:30); and the benefits described by Webster’s are the natural fruit of being found in Him: “ for he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.” (1 Cor 6:17). This is about as relational as you can get.

    Abiding in Jesus is entirely a subordinate relationship on our part, and it must begin with reconciliation. It is through believing the gospel and confessing Jesus as our Lord that this rapprochement takes place as sins are forgiven, we receive the adoption as sons, etc., and the saving relationship begins. In the same vein, it will include a lifetime of heartfelt response on our part, which is made possible through the abundance of grace He provides:

    “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”
    (Eph 2:10)

    So in other words, things like loyalty, love, obedience, and other forms of response are the natural fruit of our faith. Thus they are not work driven, but faith driven as He, too, responds through us in the relationship that is formed:

    To say that it is not necessary to confess Jesus as Lord in order to be saved is nonsense. First of all, the Scriptures have clearly stated it (Romans 10:9) and no amount of sophistry can skirt around this. But second, by the sheer practicality of salvation itself, it, is like saying that the relationship can begin without an introduction; that we are not subordinate since that is irrelevant. It envisions a bad arrangement and little more, for even Jesus Himself becomes secondary to ‘the plan’.

    “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
    (Rom 11:36)

    And by the way, where does the phrase ‘the plan of salvation’ ever appear in Scripture?

    Loren

    P.S. Antonio,

    I'm glad you asked your question. Jesus is Lord, whether we like it or not, because the Father has made Him Lord (Acts 2:36). When we confess Him as Lord it simply means that we are submitting oursleves to this reality rather than resisting Him any further. It includes the essence of repenting and we are reconciled. A constructive new relationship replaces the old animosity. But there is also a sense in which we should be willing to confess Him before men (Luke 12:8-9).

    Paul said that 'whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.' What do you see that procludes a scenario in which the gospel is preached, someone hears and believes, and calls on His name to be saved? I think the application is obvious.

    And are you suggesting (I draw an inference,) that Israel is in some way saved even without believing in Jesus? You've quoted Paul as praying for their salvation (Romans 10:1), so that would contradict such a conclusion. I certainly hope you didn't mean it that way, and I invite you to elaborate.

    Hi gojira,

    I am acquainted with the emerging church crowd but I'm not one of them. I think they started great but then started loosing ground, and now it's pretty bad. They break my heart. But that's another topic for another day.

    By Blogger Cleopas, at 11/21/2006 11:45 PM  

  • What does it mean to "submit ourselves to the reality that Jesus is Lord"? Please explain the ambiguity of that statement. I wish to take you to task on this statment of yours and get a clear and definitive answer.

    Furthermore, I feel the need to direct you to word studies of the Greek word "soteria" in both the Septuagint and New Testament rather than Webster's. Are you importing the English Webster's dictionary entry for "salvation" into Pauline theology? Please tell me, "no!"

    Are you aware of the great flexibility and liquidity of the Greek word "soteria", salvation? It is the knee-jerk reaction of 21st century readers to import ossified, English dictionary entries into the word every time it occurs in our English text, IOW, the sense of deliverance in the religious and spiritual sense.

    Yet the incredible majority of the instances of the word in the Greek text of the Bible does not have that meaning whatsoever.

    What is the common meaning that Greek readers of that time would entertain first? That of a temporal deliverance: from death, sickness, circumstance, and calamity.

    The thing is, Loren, that the temporal wrath of God is manifest against those who do not obey His word. A high degree of culpability rests with those "who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises; of whom are the fathers and from whom, according to the flesh, Christ came" Rom 9:4-5. Paul desires their full-orbed salvation. Not just their justification, but the deliverance from God's temporal wrath for their sin and rebellion.

    Salvation, for Paul, in the book of Romans is never used for simple, deliverance from God's final judgment, eternal salvation.

    Furthermore, if someone "hears and believes" what more would they need for mere justification-salvation? Eternal life and justification is by "faith alone" apart from any volitional activities, which must include your condition to confess publicly that "Jesus is Lord".

    My questions are:

    1)Why would one need to confess with the mouth that Jesus is Lord for eternal salvation, i.e. justification salvation if they have already believed? Is faith insufficient?

    2) Why wounldn't all Catholics, JW's, and Mormons be saved when they, in fact, "submit themselves to the reality that Jesus is Lord?"

    3)Where does the confession that "Jesus is Lord" come from? The Greek text says "Confess with your mouth, 'Lord Jesus!'" (IOW, an appeal to Jesus "Lord Jesus! Save me (from my temporal circumstances!)"

    4)How could one who holds that "confession with the mouth" is necessary for salvation hold at the same time that eternal life is merely a gift received?

    Imagine that a man came to me with a new motorcycle and said "This is a gift, yours free, if you will just walk down the streets of Ocean Beach and publicly identify yourself with Bozo the clown, enduring as they hurl insults at you." That is not a gift, man, but a reward for a contract negotiated and enacted.

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/22/2006 3:11 AM  

  • Hi Rose~

    There are some deep thoughts on this thread! Good discussion, much to consider and weigh.

    I love this blog and those who are drawn here.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone,
    Brother John

    By Blogger J. Wendell, at 11/22/2006 6:56 AM  

  • Hi Rose,

    Just wanted to let you know that you got the Gojira ROAR.

    http://gojirasstompingground.blogspot.com/2006/11/early-roaring-shout-out.html

    By the way, if you check out your roar, also stop here:

    http://gojirasstompingground.blogspot.com/2006/11/well-how-about-that.html

    and give a thought.

    Anyway, you have been roared! ;-)

    By Blogger Gojira, at 11/22/2006 8:35 AM  

  • Rose, Antonio, Matthew, and whoever knows the answer:

    Who is the person that has done many things in the name of the Lord, but Jesus tells him to depart from Him because He never knew him? I would assume that this type of person "walked the isle" and believes he is saved.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/22/2006 9:45 AM  

  • P.S. Hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving!

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/22/2006 9:46 AM  

  • Wow, I was so busy at work yesterday that I could not even take a break.

    Sofyst. you ask:
    Do you think the act of God whereby I am continually saved from sin daily is 'salvation'?
    Yes, it is a result of the new birth. He has given you a new nature. If you build up this new man by imbibing the Word of God, fellowship and prayer, all of which are activities that, with the help of the Holy Spirit, will "save" you from a world of trouble caused by the sins that you would otherwise commit, were you not born-again ... or ... were you not submitting to the Lord.

    Don't you see some of this as dependant on whether you build up this new man or build up the flesh and rebel against the Holy Spirit within you?

    I have a crackhead friend who is doing this right now - my husband spent 45 minutes on the phone with her last night. We watched her be baptised, we used to fellowship with her and loved her as a new creation, which she clearly seemed to be. She has allowed dissapointments to strengthen a root of bitterness, turned away from fellowship, (she says she worships in her garage all by herself), and has been given over to alcohol abuse, crack and even mental illness. She is not "being saved" from these sins and pitfalls because of her own choices ... one bad choice laid upon another etc...
    Of course, you would just say that she was never "saved" (in the eternal sense), but we can't really know for sure, can we? Only she knows if she really believed in the claims of the Christ and received Him. She could have been faking it, but this is not necessarily so. She really didn't seem to be.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 10:05 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Beoming a child a God does not require effort. Truly. Walking with the Lord does. Amen?

    Antonio,
    submitted for your approval
    I absolutely agree and approve of your first comment on this thread.
    A lot of isms don't deal with this reality:
    All men and women are wired differently.
    Thanks for your interaction.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 10:09 AM  

  • Brian,
    LOL. I forgot about rule #411. "See, I Told You So" - wasn't that a book by Rush?
    Hamburger Hill - DTS? Your comments crack me up.

    Hi Todd,
    Good statement:
    Listen to these people pile up mountains of words in order to try and refute the simplicity of Christ. I agree about the mystery thing too. I hope you have a nice Thanksgiving there in WI.

    Hi BOB!
    Yes, so true! We do not make Him Lord. He is Lord. As believers, it behooves our spiritual well being and the building up of the church if we submit to His Lordship. Truly, He has authored, or began and finished, the whole kit and kaboodle of that in which we have faith. We must look to Him to live the Christian life.

    Hi Jel,
    shouldn't that be turned around?
    you receive Christ, then in him you commit your life and turn from all know sin

    Yes, absolutely. How can a person who hasn't even received Christ and been born again have any power in their life to turn from that which holds them?

    (Secret - it is by regeneration preceding faith. shhhh) Actually, jel, I don't mean top confuse you. I don't believe in regeneration preceding faith. But ... that is how some folks would answer your question.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 10:26 AM  

  • Cleopas,
    Your exchange with Jim and Matthew is interesting. I would have to say that I do think your suggestion that believing is "doing something" sounds very off. In the NT, we see believing as contrasted with doing. I especially like the irony of this statement:

    John 6:29
    Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”


    I agree that the Christian life is a relationship. Entering that relationship or being born-again, is not the same as building the relationship or growing in it. John 17:3 is beautiful. In eternity, we will know Him more and more ... we will know even as we are known.

    Now, you bring up this verse:
    "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!' (Matt 7:23)

    Those being spoken to have no relationship with Christ. They are not sons. I don't think it is the quality of the son that is in question. ... or the obedience. Everyone practices some degree of lawlessness. The difference between the ones welcomed and ones told to depart is whether He knows them, whether they are sons, not how close they are to God ... or how obedient .. or how little lawlessness they practice.

    Question for me:
    Is this similar to the 'Lorship salvation' booklet you've recently read?

    What do you mean? DO you mean have I gotten my thoughts from that booklet? No. I heard of Lordhsip Salvation after being a believer for about 5 years. Right away I dismissed it because it was not the gospel that I know, the gospel that saved me or the gospel that I had been seeing in the Word of God for the previous 5 years. I thought it was a fringe thing and would surely trap no real Christian. I had no idea it was becoming so mainstream. The booklet by Pickering was something I read about 10 years ago and I thought I would post it because it was a respectful treatment of the book, TGATJ. I agreed greatly with the little monograph and so I posted it. People are talking about this issue a lot around the blogosphere, despite the fact that Phil Johnson thinks the issue is settled for all real, serious Christians.
    Does that answer your question?

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 10:51 AM  

  • Hi Jodie! Thanks for visiting!

    J Wendell,
    I am glad you are getting something out of it.

    Gojira,
    Thanks for the ROAR!

    Dawn,
    Who is the person that has done many things in the name of the Lord, but Jesus tells him to depart from Him because He never knew him? I would assume that this type of person "walked the isle" and believes he is saved.

    See my comment above to Loren about Matthew 7:23. "Walked the Isle" - guess what? I never walked an aisle!!! To equate a gospel free of a requirement of works as a "walk the aisle" gospel is interesting. Wouldn't "walking the aisle" be a work? I don't believe the raising of the hand, the walking of an aisle etc... are requirements for being saved. I believe that when we trust Christ for His FINISHED WORK - tetellesti - and receive his gift of forgiveness and righteous standing with God, we are born again. WE MUST CHOOSE to live the Christian life afterwards. If we don't, it doesn't negate the fact that we were justified. This is so important!!!

    It is the only way the different Scriptures (some saying "not by works", others that seem to indicate works as necessary) make sense together, by seeing salvation and discipleship as two different things, BOTH VERY IMPORTANT - but nevertheless distinct. Do you see what I mean?
    Thanks for visiting.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 11:03 AM  

  • Rose, if you assume that I, as an advocate of the LORDship position, would look at your crackhead friend and assume her never to have been saved, then you are grossly mistaken.

    I honestly try to never assume that freegracers believe that one need only 'believe' (make a simple mental acknowledge that there is a God) and then walk away and live the most debaucherous and pagan lifestyle of utter rebellion and most disguisting wickedness before the site of God, and yet still die and go to heaven where their 'LORD' awaits them and says, 'well done my good and faithful servant, I love you, enter my paradise.' I really try my hardest not to buy into the gross misrepresentation that is cast upon the freegracers by the ignorant LORDshippers. I really do wish the same respect was shown though towards we LORDships...sadly, I don't see it too often.

    Personally, I would look at your crackhead friend, and be reminded within my heart about Peter. Peter, who's salvation should never be doubted, denied the LORD, not once, nor twice, but three times. Peter strayed, why can your crackhead friend not?

    The LORDship advocate, the ignorant one, would say, 'yes, Peter strayed, but it was not for a long period of time'. But who on earth are we to be the determiners of the period of time wherein the children of God can be allowed (by God mind you) to stray momentarily. If God feels it so desirous to allow His prodigal to go away for only a night (like Peter did) or to go away for a few days (as most Christians most definately do), or go away for many many years, that is between God and the rebellious Christian.

    My point, as a LORDship adherer, is not that the life of the Christian will be marked by continually repentance and growth. I do not believe this. I believe rather that their life will be marked by growth and repentance, how far in between the growth or repentance and how long the periods of rebellion and darkness last, that is marked only by the individual Christian's individuality. It is the story of the Christian. The difference between these stories are what makes the tapestry of different people that all together make the body of Christ more beautiful.

    I personally think it is remarkeably beautiful to have a woman who has lived a most devout life of pious devotion to God from an early age, stand next to the once devil worshipping sexaholic that has spent his entire life with drugs and alcohol and at an older age was graced by the LORD. I think it even more beautiful when both of these stand with the person who as a child believed in God, and yet was allowed by God to enter the wilderness for some forty years (ahum...MOSES...ahum) and be brought back by God to lead a life helping those that are within the wilderness.

    I find such diversity within the body to show the remarkeable complexity of God.

    Sorry for the rant, my friend. I am just somewhat annoyed that all LORDships would be tainted by yourself, when I know yourself the wiser, to be ignorant enough to look at your crackhead friend and assume God not to be able to speak to the dead and bring life back.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/22/2006 11:11 AM  

  • Rose, you said this:

    If you build up this new man by imbibing the Word of God, fellowship and prayer, all of which are activities that, with the help of the Holy Spirit, will "save" you from a world of trouble caused by the sins that you would otherwise commit, were you not born-again ... or ... were you not submitting to the Lord.

    Please help me here. It does appear that you are saying something that I wouldn't think that you would say.

    Are you saying that if one does not submit to the LORD you would not be 'saved' from a world of trouble caused by the sins you commit? If you do not build up this man by imbibing the word of God, fellowship and prayer then you will fall to your sins and not be 'saved' from them daily?

    Is this what you are saying?

    Don't you see some of this as dependant on whether you build up this new man or build up the flesh and rebel against the Holy Spirit within you?

    Some of what?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/22/2006 11:20 AM  

  • Sofyst,
    I appreciate your saying that. I don't mean to "taint" anyone. I truly thought that what I said about my frined is what most LORDshippers would think. I appreciate what you have said here!

    Would you also say that if she reaches the end of her life (remember, this could be tomorrow or the next day) and doesn't repent, then she didn't truly persevere and therefore wasn't truly "graced"? (or do I have another misunderstanding of the LS position?)

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 11:23 AM  

  • I will answer your second comment/question when you answer mine below it. (we were posting at the same time.)

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/22/2006 11:25 AM  

  • Sofyst says:
    ----------
    I honestly try to never assume that freegracers believe that one need only 'believe' (make a simple mental acknowledge that there is a God)
    ----------
    1) Is faith insufficient, Nathan? Because the fact of the matter is tha the gospel says that one need only believe!
    2) Have the FGers been around the block so many times yet you do not have a grasp on what they believe the content of saving faith is? It most definitely is not "I believe that there is a God"! I get a bit frustrated repeating myself as lately I have expounded on saving faith quite alot. Saving faith is believing that one is eternally secure through taking Christ at His word in His promise whereby He guarantees eternal well-being to all who merely believe Him to do so. It is trusting Christ for the gift of eternal life which He guarantees to all who believe in Him for it.

    Sofyst writes:
    ----------
    and then walk away and live the most debaucherous and pagan lifestyle of utter rebellion and most disguisting wickedness before the site of God, and yet still die and go to heaven
    ----------
    Nathan, if this scenario could not be true, than eternal life is not a gift and salvation is not by grace. Where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more.

    listen to your words "[a man can sin a whole lot, even heinous sins] and yet still die and go to heaven"

    You seem quite amazed that eternal salvation is in all reality AN ABSOLUTELY FREE GIFT, apart from any actions of the man. That a man can get into heaven without a repertiore of good works ("it is the gift of God, not of works")! That a sinner, having received the free gift of eternal security, as a beggar, can none-the-less, go on sinning and yet God is faithful to His promises ("If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, and cannot disown Himself")!

    By implication, Nathan, 1) good works and 2) lack of sin are requirements you would give for ultimate entrance into heaven.

    Sofyst writes:
    ----------
    where their 'LORD' awaits them and says, 'well done my good and faithful servant, I love you, enter my paradise.'
    ----------
    Such people as you describe, yet are none-the-less saved, will not experience the "well done", but Christ's rebuke. They will suffer shame and remorse for their wasted life. They will suffer loss of privilege, honor, and glory in the kingdom, being disqualified for co-heirship with Jesus Christ, and co-rulership. They will be mere citizens of the kingdom. Yet they will be in heaven, for they received it as a free gift.

    Sofyst writes:
    ----------
    I really try my hardest not to buy into the gross misrepresentation that is cast upon the freegracers by the ignorant LORDshippers.
    ----------
    Yet you insist on disseminating gross misrepresentations

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/22/2006 1:36 PM  

  • Happy Thanksgiving.

    Rose, I await your response.

    Antonio, you said:

    1) Is faith insufficient, Nathan? Because the fact of the matter is tha the gospel says that one need only believe!
    2) Have the FGers been around the block so many times yet you do not have a grasp on what they believe the content of saving faith is? It most definitely is not "I believe that there is a God"! I get a bit frustrated repeating myself as lately I have expounded on saving faith quite alot. Saving faith is believing that one is eternally secure through taking Christ at His word in His promise whereby He guarantees eternal well-being to all who merely believe Him to do so. It is trusting Christ for the gift of eternal life which He guarantees to all who believe in Him for it.
    '

    Ahh! there is the kicker my friend. There is quite a difference in 'trusting' and in 'believing'. The representation of the Freegrace position is that it teaches that man need only 'believe' - that is make the mental consent' - no 'trusting' need occur as this is extra-biblical requirements added to salvation - only believe!

    You seem quite amazed that eternal salvation is in all reality AN ABSOLUTELY FREE GIFT, apart from any actions of the man. That a man can get into heaven without a repertiore of good works ("it is the gift of God, not of works")! That a sinner, having received the free gift of eternal security, as a beggar, can none-the-less, go on sinning and yet God is faithful to His promises ("If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, and cannot disown Himself")!

    No Sir! I am never amazed that God is quite faithful to His promise. I am never amazed that God's free gift can be applicable to the most debaucherous fool. But what I am amazed is the willfull ignorance of this faithful God who threatens Israel with divorce papers. I am likewise amazed at this most skilled Farmer unable to complete the good work He started. That is mind numbingly amazing!

    Such people as you describe, yet are none-the-less saved, will not experience the "well done", but Christ's rebuke. They will suffer shame and remorse for their wasted life. They will suffer loss of privilege, honor, and glory in the kingdom, being disqualified for co-heirship with Jesus Christ, and co-rulership. They will be mere citizens of the kingdom. Yet they will be in heaven, for they received it as a free gift.

    True true. If you will notice, this was said within the idea of the 'gross misrepresentation of the Freegrace position' that I was detesting. I said that I try not to buy into the mirepresentation of the Freegrace position that states: bla bla bla (what is said above).

    I forgive your confusion.

    Yet you insist on disseminating gross misrepresentations

    I have done no such thing. There is quite a difference in one misrepresenting, and another (yourself) misunderstanding. Do try harder to pay attention.

    awaiting the hope,
    sofyst

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/23/2006 8:28 AM  

  • My apologies Rose, I had misunderstand how you were answering my question and asking your own.

    I would say that if your friend did not repent and appeared to lead her life as she is now living it, and was to die tonight - let us say - that I still would be unable to determine her salvific status. When I become God I'll tell you whether she was a believer or not.

    I confess that my position would normally not be accepted by most LORDships, I don't think (unless you can find some more brillaint ones out there such as myself).

    But as I have been changing lately, I think I am getting more into the mystical idea of it all, the agnostic view. I am trying less to reason through all this mugglines, and simply accept the veracity and awesome texture of undefined beauty that is 'Christianity'.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/23/2006 8:37 AM  

  • OH! so heres the point I wanted to make, or will make. Moses sinned, and God forbid him to go into the desert land. Without looking at the Scriptures, I would say that Moses did not make a public statement of repentance. He may have, even if he did, that is superfluous.

    My point is that Moses did not go into the promise land, and was rather taken upon a mountain with God to look over into the promise land. What in the heck all this means, you may ask the sporadic little sofyst. What it means is that upon the mount only God and Moses knows what occured.

    Likewise with your crackhead friend. If she was to die tonight, within that garage, only her and the LORD knows what occured.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/23/2006 8:40 AM  

  • Hey Nathan,

    about your consideration of 'trust' being different than 'believe', or a superior word in salvific, gospel contexts, please be referred to an article I wrote:

    Faith / Trust and All That Jazz

    Also see:

    James 2 and Saving Faith -- Does the Bible Teach that Faith is More than Belief?

    There is a good discussion of faith about halfway down. (You may very well be interested in my take of James 2:18, 19 there in the beginning)

    Your comments on those posts (even in this meta) would be appreciated, as I do not wish to type a defense of something that I already have in a couple of posts.

    See what you think of them!

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/23/2006 11:05 PM  

  • Rose, I admit I haven't read through the thread, but I would say that all those who "simply trusts Christ in a moment of conviction over the truth of the Christ's sacrifice and His authority to offer salvation" necessarily do submit to the lordship of Christ. A true understanding of one necessarily leads to the other.

    BTW, I don't think it is an irrational question.
    :-)

    By Blogger Jonathan Moorhead, at 11/23/2006 11:27 PM  

  • I do not understand your logic, Jonathan. Why does trust entail submission?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/24/2006 4:12 AM  

  • Ok, "walking the aisle" was obviously a very bad choice of phrase. I did not mean that one must walk an aisle to be saved. That's why I put it in quotes. I wrote it because many people do exactly that when they receive Jesus into their hearts. I agree with you that you do not have to go to the altar in a church to be saved. In fact, when I'm witnessing to someone I tell them they can receive Jesus anywhere and that they don't have to be in church. And I agree that we are not saved by works, but our faith is shown by works.

    My point was that the bible implies that those who use the defense of doing certain things in the name of the Lord "believed" they were saved.

    You said: "Those being spoken to have no relationship with Christ. They are not sons. I don't think it is the quality of the son that is in question. ... or the obedience. Everyone practices some degree of lawlessness. The difference between the ones welcomed and ones told to depart is whether He knows them, whether they are sons, not how close they are to God ... or how obedient .. or how little lawlessness they practice."

    I agree. Everyone practices some degree of lawlessness. That is not the point. The point, to me, is that they were not truly saved. They may have given God lip service and believed that Jesus to be the savior and they even did works in the name of the Lord, but they've never fully committed to Him in their hearts. As you say, they never had a relationship.

    I'm a little confused though. Don't Free Gracers (or those who believe along the lines of Free Grace theology) believe that one does not need to have a relationship with the Lord to be saved, and that they only need to acknowledge/believe that Jesus was someone sent from God to die on the cross to deliver us from sin? And that they only need to agree that sin is bad, but they don't have to change their lifestyle? Or am I totally wrong? And isn't having a relationship more than merely putting one's trust in the Lord?

    You've basically said that in order to be saved, we must have a relationship with God. A relationship requires effort. To me, that is more than a belief that Jesus is the savior.

    I'm not trying to be a smart alec so please do not misunderstand. I'm wanting clarification.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/24/2006 7:22 AM  

  • Dawn

    "And isn't having a relationship more than merely putting one's trust in the Lord?"

    Yes. It certainly is. But you cannot have a relationship with the Lord until you are justified.

    How do you get justified? Trust in the Lord for eternal life.

    One needs saving faith to have a relationship with the Lord.

    However, I suppose if one is using the term 'relationship' in a very broad sense, trust would be a for of relationship. But I do not think that is what you mean by 'relationship.'

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/24/2006 11:07 AM  

  • Dawn,
    By relationship, I meant it in the sense of being related to the Lord as my newborn baby will be related to me when he arrives. He/she will be my son/daughter. I will be his/her mother. That relationship will be established by the mere fact of birth. The relationship will grow as long as we are together and interacting. Yes, that growth will take work. Does that help?

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/24/2006 11:13 AM  

  • Antonio, to your first post, I posted upon my blog http://protestantpub.com/blog/node/192. To your second post, I commented.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/24/2006 11:23 AM  

  • Yes, your further explanation clarifies what you mean by relationship. Thanks.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/24/2006 6:50 PM  

  • Thanks for your explanation Matthew.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/24/2006 6:51 PM  

  • Matthew, trust entails submission because it is an inherent part of the Gospel. Cause-effect. And of course there are varying degrees of this, but I believe it must be there or someone doesn't really understand the hideous nature of their sin and the free grace of God in Christ.

    By Blogger Jonathan Moorhead, at 11/25/2006 9:31 AM  

  • Sofyst,
    I am glad that you say you would still be unable to determine her salvific status. You would have to speak to her, wouldn't you? I am glad for your response on that.

    OK, so you say:
    Are you saying that if one does not submit to the LORD you would not be 'saved' from a world of trouble caused by the sins you commit? If you do not build up this man by imbibing the word of God, fellowship and prayer then you will fall to your sins and not be 'saved' from them daily?

    Is this what you are saying?


    Yes. I think if I chose to live my life (being a new creaion) apart from the principles of the family that I have been brought into - then I will have a world of trouble. This is called rebellion and it includes destructive behavior. There is a world of trouble for a Christian who does this. I am not saying that he himself is not saved eternally, but he is not saved from some or many of the calamities that he brings upon himself. Is this so hard to see? If I chose to (God forbid) leave my husband and family for some whimsical fancy, do you think God is just going to save me from the trouble I am bringing on myself? Perhaps He will immediately stop me, perhaps He will teach me a lesson, perhaps He will chastise me (this is part of the world of trouble too.) ... or perhaps He will hand me over for the destruction of the flesh.

    Capiche?

    Now you quote me here:
    Don't you see some of this as dependant on whether you build up this new man or build up the flesh and rebel against the Holy Spirit within you?

    and ask this:

    Some of what?

    My answer: Avoidance of "the bondage of sin" ... walking with the Lord. I must WALK with Him. This is a choice I make. Is this such a foreign concept to you?

    Sorry it took me so long to reply to your question.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/25/2006 9:48 AM  

  • Jonathan,
    I am glad you did not think it was an irrational question.

    You say:
    [Those who simply trust Christ] necessarily do submit to the lordship of Christ. A true understanding of one necessarily leads to the other.

    I think we choose to live our lives walking with the Lord or we can choose to rebel. This is one place where the concepts of FG make perfect sense to me. Their challenges to you regarding the WHY? of all the warning passages if it is inevitable that salvation will result in works and perseverance have gone unanswered to my satisfaction. I see warnings to Christians to walk right. This means we will not necessarily do so.

    Hey, I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving and thanks for dropping by.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/25/2006 9:52 AM  

  • Dawn,
    Your short replies ... does this mean that you are convinced of the point of view I have presented???? hehe ;~)

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/25/2006 9:54 AM  

  • Jonathan, I still do not understand your logic.

    You could certainly argue that submission is an essential part of the Gospel.
    Thus, submission would be necessary as well as trust. This would be perfectly logical.

    But logically, submission could not be a part of trust without altering the definition of what it means to trust.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/25/2006 10:49 AM  

  • Rose, you say:

    Yes. I think if I chose to live my life (being a new creaion) apart from the principles of the family that I have been brought into - then I will have a world of trouble. This is called rebellion and it includes destructive behavior. There is a world of trouble for a Christian who does this. I am not saying that he himself is not saved eternally, but he is not saved from some or many of the calamities that he brings upon himself.

    Here is where I think a glimmer of hope can be seen for a uniting of the freegrace camp and the LORDship camp.

    What if, and this may be a huge what if, the LORDship camp is focusing upon this type of saving? What if the LORDship camp is not talking about eternal salvation when they push for submitting and discipleship?

    What if the LORDship camp is saying that if you choose to live your life apart from principles of the family that you have been brought into then you will not be saved from the calamities that you bring upon yourself?

    If the LORDship camp said that for someone to be 'saved' (from the calamities of the everyday life), they must submit to God, or to the principles of the family that they have been brought into, would you agree with them? Would you agree that submitting in this regard is necessary for salvation (this aspect of salvation)?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/26/2006 1:05 AM  

  • Adam
    "What if the LORDship camp is saying that if you choose to live your life apart from principles of the family that you have been brought into then you will not be saved from the calamities that you bring upon yourself?

    If the LORDship camp said that for someone to be 'saved' (from the calamities of the everyday life), they must submit to God, or to the principles of the family that they have been brought into, would you agree with them? Would you agree that submitting in this regard is necessary for salvation (this aspect of salvation)?"

    I am a little puzzled by this line of questioning. It is certainly the case that Free Grace people clearly distinguish between salvation from the eternal consequences of sin and salvation from the trials and calmities of life.

    As far as I understand, the Lordship camp are unwilling to make such a clear distinction. They tend to acknowledge that the word 'salvation' can mean different things, but prefer to keep the emphasis on salvation from the eternal consequences of sin. Furthermore, they hold that a person cannot be truly delivered from a eternal consequences of sin unless they have lived a life of obediance and submission to the Lord at least to some degree.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/26/2006 11:11 AM  

  • Matthew, I am as giddy as a little school girl. I do believe great progress is being made. I feel as though there has been some light shed on our disagreements. For I think that both of us have been coming at this argument with ideas of what the others are saying, and not really with what the others are saying.

    I do believe that you have misread the LORDship camp. From all my readings, I have only seen an emphasis on sanctification. The LORDship advocates have argued that when a person is eternally saved/justified/believe, they then begin a maturation process. Within this maturation process, submitting to the LORD is vitally imporant and necessary. If no submission does occur, no salvation (sanctification) will occur.

    However, I may be mistaken. Perhaps you have read some advocates of LORDship that teach only about the justification aspect of salvation and never are willing to divorce from this and speak about the sanctification aspect of it all...

    Perhaps you could show some quotations (within context) of such thoughts that are conveyed.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/26/2006 11:47 AM  

  • What if, and this may be a huge what if, the LORDship camp is focusing upon this type of saving?

    Well then, that would be one of the biggest misunderstandings that I have ever heard of!

    Let us just focus on the parties present here. Is that what YOU mean when you speak of repentance and works surely being a part of salvation?

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/26/2006 2:55 PM  

  • Lordship salvation adovcates seem to teach, as I understand that if a person never sumbits to a life of obediance to Christ they were never justified in the first place and so ceertainly will not be justified.

    Our friend here Jonathan Moorhead seems to imply this:

    "Rose, I admit I haven't read through the thread, but I would say that all those who "simply trusts Christ in a moment of conviction over the truth of the Christ's sacrifice and His authority to offer salvation" necessarily do submit to the lordship of Christ. A true understanding of one necessarily leads to the other."

    Let me ask you:

    Will a person go to heaven if she does not perservere in the Christian faith?

    Will a person go to heaven if she does not live a life that is characterised by good works?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/26/2006 5:07 PM  

  • Rose, you ask:

    Let us just focus on the parties present here. Is that what YOU mean when you speak of repentance and works surely being a part of salvation?

    Partly. When I say that a Christian does repent and show good works, I am referring to the idea that throughout the life of the living Christian, who has the living Spirit within them, growth is seen. This growth is marked by repentance and fruit.

    I still though would argue for the idea of repentance being Biblically tied to faith. You cannot look to something without looking from something. You cannot believe in God without disbelieving in self. Repentance is the negative aspect of faith.

    Matthew, you say:

    Lordship salvation adovcates seem to teach, as I understand that if a person never sumbits to a life of obediance to Christ they were never justified in the first place and so ceertainly will not be justified.

    Most I have heard teach rather that if a person never submits EVER to obedience to Christ within their life then their justification is questionable. Just as if we looked at a seed that NEVER sprouted or did anything, we would question whether the seed was ever alive or whether it was a dud.

    "Rose, I admit I haven't read through the thread, but I would say that all those who "simply trusts Christ in a moment of conviction over the truth of the Christ's sacrifice and His authority to offer salvation" necessarily do submit to the lordship of Christ. A true understanding of one necessarily leads to the other."

    And I would agree with him completely. Jesus is not divided. He is both Savior and God and LORD. If one has a proper understanding of the gospel message, of what occurs when one truly believes, then they will understand that they are entering into a relationship that will forever change their life.

    If someone has been taught that once they believe in Christ then God will forever leave them alone and nothing will change within their life, then they have a improper understanding of the gospel message.

    Will a person go to heaven if she does not perservere in the Christian faith?

    Will a person go to heaven if she does not live a life that is characterised by good works?


    You would have to tell me what you mean by perservere. And it is possible that a person could go to heaven if she doesn't live a life characterized by good works. The question is not good works, per se, but 'growth'. If a person lives a life that is characterized by absolutely no growth, and actually retro-growth (I cannot think of what that would be called; going in reverse; getting worse), if a person lives a life of this manner of thing, then it would be highly questionable whether they were ever regenerated in the first place. What manner of 'life' is this that Jesus gives that looks more to be dead than it does living??

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/26/2006 5:38 PM  

  • Adam, your views are not in harmonmy with those who advocate Free Grace and they seem to be little different from those advocating Lordship Salvation views.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/27/2006 4:19 AM  

  • Rose "Your short replies ... does this mean that you are convinced of the point of view I have presented???? hehe ;~) "

    LOL, Rose. Sorry, but not yet. :-)

    You say the people whom Jesus says, "Depart from me. I never knew you," are those who do not have a relationship with Jesus because they are not born again.

    The question still stands as to who these people are? What makes them think they should be allowed into the kingdom? Why would they do the things they've done in the name of the Lord if they did not feel they were "saved" at some point or at least want to be saved? They've obviously "believed" in the sense that they "believed" that Jesus was the savior for they did their deeds in His name, right? No?

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/27/2006 9:17 AM  

  • Dawn, there are plenty of people in this world who consider themselves to be Christians but who are lost.

    There are the billions of Roman Catholics, those in the Eastern Orthodox churches, there are the Arminians who think that there final salvation depends upon their works, there are the followers of the various cults- the J.W.s, the Mormons, the Christadelphians, the Seventh Day Adventists.

    All these believe a false gospel that cannot save and yet they profess to follow Christ and teach falsehood in His name.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/27/2006 11:13 AM  

  • Hi Dawn,
    who these people are? What makes them think they should be allowed into the kingdom?

    I am glad that you brought up that passage! Here it is:

    21Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7)

    What are these people claiming? Are they claiming that they are under the blood of Christ? ARe they claiming that they have been forgiven for their iniquities and given new life? No, they are touting ALL THE GOOD THINGS THEY HAVE DONE. This is key, I think.

    Now, one might say that Jesus was talking about works and that He was talking about fruitless or FALSE (as they say) Christians.

    If you look at Chapter 6 and 7, though, it seems clear that He is talking to those who believe in Him, not to some group who were on the fence. He is talking about discipleship. He tells them about how much God cares for them and wants to give them good things. He speaks to them as though they are SONS. He is warning them of false teachers. He is saying not to listen to a TEACHER/PROPHET who is doing all these fancy things but the fruit of his lips and life are not true to Christ and His message. I don't see Christ as giving an evaluation method whereby we determine whether or not the people we know who profess a saving faith in Christ alone are truly saved ... or whether they have an insufficent faith based on their fruit.

    Can you see this?

    Read chapters 6 and 7 - here ... I will make it really easy for anyone reading this. CLICK.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/27/2006 12:04 PM  

  • Matthew, you are quite humorous. We are all doing well and discussing greatly, and then when I say something that sounds too LORDshippy, you simply dismiss the conversation and say, 'you don't agree with me, you are one of them...'

    Very nice. I was hoping that you were able to continue discussing as you had been. Apparently I was mistaken.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/27/2006 12:07 PM  

  • Am I coming across a bit crusty?

    I am happy to continue discussion of the subject.

    What particular point were you wanting me to address?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/27/2006 3:35 PM  

  • Matthew, lets start here:

    And I would agree with him completely. Jesus is not divided. He is both Savior and God and LORD. If one has a proper understanding of the gospel message, of what occurs when one truly believes, then they will understand that they are entering into a relationship that will forever change their life.

    If someone has been taught that once they believe in Christ then God will forever leave them alone and nothing will change within their life, then they have a improper understanding of the gospel message.


    If someone has the idea that when they believe they are only insured a future residence within heaven; if they are not told that once they believe they will enter into the Kingdom of God (a clearly lifechanging idea) and that Christ will enter into them (likewise a lifechanging idea) and that they are given a guide (the Holy Spirit); if they are not told all this, do you think that they have been given an incomplete idea of what salvation is?

    When I say salvation there, I am not referring to merely one minute aspect of salvation, I am referring to it all. If we are going to teach a person about 'salvation' shouldn't we attempt to paint for them the whole picture, rather than one smidget upon the corner?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/27/2006 6:40 PM  

  • Rose, you asked:

    Let us just focus on the parties present here. Is that what YOU mean when you speak of repentance and works surely being a part of salvation?

    and I responded thus:

    Partly. When I say that a Christian does repent and show good works, I am referring to the idea that throughout the life of the living Christian, who has the living Spirit within them, growth is seen. This growth is marked by repentance and fruit.

    Can I ask whether you would agree? You seemed to suggest that a life of rebellion and wrong choices will not produce salvation from the calamities of this life, would this not then lead to the idea that repentance and good works (the opposites of rebelion and wrong choices) will lead to salvation from the calamities of this life? Thus meaning that repentance and good works is a part of salvation?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/27/2006 6:43 PM  

  • Salvation includes a number of things which include inheritance of the kingdom of God and salvation from a life of sin.

    If a person only enters heaven, her salvation is in a sense incomplete.

    I think we can distinguish and separate different aspects of salvation.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/28/2006 3:32 AM  

  • Sweet Jesus! See how much more we are agreeing. What a shame these little labels of 'LORDship' or 'Freegrace' divide people when agreement is really had. Perhaps if we all just dropped the labels a lot more harmony would be had. Or I know! We can all just label ourselves the same (perhaps 'determinist', since we all know that is the most accurate of all schools of thought! :))

    Salvation includes a number of things which include inheritance of the kingdom of God and salvation from a life of sin.

    Question: is either inheritance of the kingdom of God or salvation from a life of sin conditional upon actions of men, or are these things given based solely upon whether faith is present or not?

    If a person only enters heaven, her salvation is in a sense incomplete.

    That is such a strange thought. Allow me a few questions to get some clarification. Are you telling me that if a person believes, they are given eternal life (i.e. they will go to heaven), but if they only believe, and hence only enter heaven, then their salvation is in a sense incomplete?

    Perhaps we shouldn't say 'incomplete', as I think we would both agree this is not a Biblical thought. The Scriptures do not speak of 'incomplete salvations'. Perhaps we should say 'not as full' or 'not saved as much'? But surely we cannot say that the person who believes in Christ, and yet leads a rebellious life up until the time of their death is one who has an 'incomplete' salvation? Can we?

    I think we can distinguish and separate different aspects of salvation.

    Most assuredly we can. Could we then say that one aspect of salvation (justification) is conditional upon only faith, while another aspect of salvation (perhaps sanctification) is conditional upon good works?

    Very much excited at the progress being made,
    awaiting the hope,
    Adam

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/28/2006 11:09 AM  

  • "is either inheritance of the kingdom of God or salvation from a life of sin conditional upon actions of men, or are these things given based solely upon whether faith is present or not?"

    Inheritance of the kingdom is dependant upon perserverance in faith and may be lost due to immoral behaviour.

    "Are you telling me that if a person believes, they are given eternal life (i.e. they will go to heaven), but if they only believe, and hence only enter heaven, then their salvation is in a sense incomplete?"

    Yes, they would have heavenly life, but not a position of privilege in heaven.

    "Perhaps we should say 'not as full' or 'not saved as much'?"

    That would be one way of putting it.

    "But surely we cannot say that the person who believes in Christ, and yet leads a rebellious life up until the time of their death is one who has an 'incomplete' salvation? Can we?"

    Why not?

    "Could we then say that one aspect of salvation (justification) is conditional upon only faith, while another aspect of salvation (perhaps sanctification) is conditional upon good works?"

    Yes, but I would not want to neglect the positional aspect of sanctification. And I would not want to completely abandon Keswick notions of 'holiness by faith', incomplete as they are.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/28/2006 12:21 PM  

  • Inheritance of the kingdom is dependant upon perserverance in faith and may be lost due to immoral behaviour.

    Here I think you and I would argue, but not because we are LORDship or Freegracer, but rather because I assume you believe the Kingdom to be 'heaven' or some future reality, whereas I believe the Kingdom to be now.

    I believe that whenever a person comes to faith, or believes in Christ, they are transmitted from the kingdom of darkness, into the kingdom of Christ.

    Col 1:13 He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves,

    So, if we were to understand this, that we as believers are already within the Kingdom, then your idea of inherentence of the kingdom being conditional upon perserverance in the faith would lead to the idea that you are one who believes one's salvation can be lost.

    HOWEVER! I don't think you believe we are now in the kingdom, therefore I know you know salvation cannot be lost. And I will not quibble now about whether we are in the kingdom or not, that is a discussion for another day.

    Yes, they would have heavenly life, but not a position of privilege in heaven.

    Not a lot of crowns?

    Yes, but I would not want to neglect the positional aspect of sanctification. And I would not want to completely abandon Keswick notions of 'holiness by faith', incomplete as they are.

    You'll need to inform me of these 'Keswick notions'. I am unfamiliar with silly Freegracer jargon.

    :D

    awaiting the hope,
    Adam

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/28/2006 9:46 PM  

  • "I believe that whenever a person comes to faith, or believes in Christ, they are transmitted from the kingdom of darkness, into the kingdom of Christ."

    I agree. But that is entrance to the kingdom, not inheritance of it. We have already entered the kingdom of God, but our inheritance of it depends upon our overcoming. It is future.

    "I am unfamiliar with silly Freegracer jargon."

    If you have never heard of the Keswick convention and its related movement, I suggest you do some reading. Historical terminology is very useful.

    Is the word 'Reformed' jargon? What word could one use instead?

    Arminian? Roman Catholic? Eastern Orthodox? Dispensational?

    Complaints about the use of jargon usually betrays ignorance.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 11/29/2006 9:15 AM  

  • I could argue that those who use jargon do so only to puff themselves up and foster their 'elitist' attitudes...BUT I was attempting to make a joke when I said 'silly freegracer jargon', as noted by the large smiley found afterward ':D'...so, easy killa!

    And I do understand your idea of entrance into the kingdom and inherentance of it. Very interesting distinction. I do not think I would disagree right now with it...

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/29/2006 10:00 AM  

  • Lets just keep commenting to get Rose's post to have over a hundred comments!

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/29/2006 10:01 AM  

  • Nathaniel,
    just 100? Can't we get to 400 and then I will authoritatively shut down all comments because I will declare the debate is over.

    :~)

    By Blogger Rose~, at 11/29/2006 12:25 PM  

  • Nathaniel,
    just 100? Can't we get to 400 and then I will authoritatively shut down all comments because I will declare the debate is over.


    No. Only 100.

    (see here if we argue about whether it be 100 or 400 we can most definately raise the number...arguing about trite matters always does such...lol)

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 11/29/2006 1:27 PM  

  • Hey Sofyst:

    Can I make a comment to you?

    I think that you are a Free Gracer.

    I think the reason you just don't come out and say it is because of the shame you may feel.

    Free Grace theology persuades and convinces you.

    Must I seek to provide truth to that?

    QUOTE:
    nathaniel adam king said...
    Oh dear God almighty. I actually agree with absolutely all of that post...

    I am going to go lie down for a little while. Something is not right, the very fabric of reality appears to be breaking down when the sofyst agrees with Antonio...

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/29/2006 3:53 PM  

  • Hey Sofyst:

    Can I make a comment to you?

    I think that you are a Free Gracer.

    I think the reason you just don't come out and say it is because of the shame you may feel.

    Free Grace theology persuades and convinces you.

    Must I seek to provide truth to that?

    QUOTE:
    nathaniel adam king said...
    Oh dear God almighty. I actually agree with absolutely all of that post...

    I am going to go lie down for a little while. Something is not right, the very fabric of reality appears to be breaking down when the sofyst agrees with Antonio...

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at 11/29/2006 3:53 PM  

  • Matthew,

    Thanks for the reply. I agree that not all who do things in the name of the Lord are saved.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/30/2006 4:47 PM  

  • Rose: "He is saying not to listen to a TEACHER/PROPHET who is doing all these fancy things but the fruit of his lips and life are not true to Christ and His message. I don't see Christ as giving an evaluation method whereby we determine whether or not the people we know who profess a saving faith in Christ alone are truly saved ... or whether they have an insufficent faith based on their fruit."

    I agree, but I still believe we will see "some" fruit. I need to re-read the chapters you mentioned in Matthew. Thanks for the reply.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 11/30/2006 4:50 PM  

  • Dawn, do not forget that the false prophets referred to in that passage are wolves in sheep's clothing. If fruit refers to good works, then they have plenty of it. They seem like fruitful Christians.

    What kind of good or bad fruit would you look for in a prophet if it does not refer to good deeds?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 12/01/2006 7:44 AM  

  • Antonio, I would be much more willing to admit that I was Freegracer then to ever admit that I was Dispensational. As long as you never speak profanity and say that name around me, I think we are good.

    But I think the reason that I would not be able to be Freegracer is my belief that growth (manifested in good acts) necessarily come from a truly converted person. This seems to be a damndable thought to most freegracer and hence alienates me from the camp.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 12/01/2006 9:54 PM  

  • Adam, I beleive Bob Wilkin, one of the leading Free Gracers allows that some who believe in Calvinistic perserverance may be classed as Free Grace on the basis of their understanding of assurance.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 12/02/2006 4:55 AM  

  • Unpack that then Matthew. If you so choose. What understanding of assurance would one need to have that would put them within the Freegrace camp as opposed to the LORDship one?

    (Almost to 100)

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 12/02/2006 10:18 AM  

  • That one could have assurance simply on the basis of having trusted in Christ for eternal life.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 12/02/2006 11:11 AM  

  • Your opinion would be that given the Scriptures say that 'those who believe will have eternal life' (John 3:16) that if one does believe then they can be truly assured they will have eternal life?

    To this I would agree. A person can truly be assured they will have eternal life if they believe.

    However, I would say that a person could still doubt whether they truly believed.

    Do tell Matthew, does Scripture anywhere tell you that you assuredly did put your trust in Jesus? Or must you look to something else for such assurance? Can you have such assurance? Are you in the wrong for not having such assurance on occasions and doubting sometimes whether you did put your trust in Jesus?

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 12/03/2006 12:03 PM  

  • This issue only becomes a problem when people confuse concepts of trust and belief.

    It is actually quite simple to know whether one has faith.

    I can be quite certain whether or not I trust Royal Mail to deliver my post tomorrow. If I know them to be reliable, I can be reasonably certain whether or not the mail will come, if I know they are not reliable, then I will have doubts.

    But essentially my trust is found in whether or not I affirm the proposition:

    "Royal Mail will deliver my mail tomorrow."

    I may be uncertain whether or not this proposition is true, but the idea that I can be uncertain whether or not I believe it is absurd. Nobody would be in confusion about whether or not they believe or disbelieve such a proposition.

    In the same way, I can be certain whether or not I trust in Jesus Christ by whether or not I affirm the proposition:

    "Jesus Christ has given me eternal life."

    There is no conceptual difference between trust in Christ for eternal life and trust in Royal Mail to deliver the post.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at 12/04/2006 5:51 AM  

  • Matthew, you said:

    I may be uncertain whether or not this proposition is true, but the idea that I can be uncertain whether or not I believe it is absurd. Nobody would be in confusion about whether or not they believe or disbelieve such a proposition.

    I can believe 'the chair will hold me up if I sit in it', and 'know' I believe it, and tell everyone I believe it, but that doesn't mean that I cannot have doubts whether I believe it or not. There still may arise within my head questions of whether I actually do believe it.

    'Well, I have never sat within the chair, how do I know it will hold me up?' 'You know, John said he believed the chair would hold him up, but he's never sat within it either, how does he know?' 'Mary says she believed the chair would hold her up, but she sat down and fell, how do I know this would be different?'

    Understand? Perhaps it is my nature, my skeptic nature, that makes me doubt more than others, but I don't think these doubts are limited to skeptics. I think that one can truly believe that there is a sun within the sky, but such a believe, such a true belief, does not discredit the idea that they have occasional bouts of questioning their belief.

    I think that this was the entire point of John writing 1 John. He says:

    1Jo 5:13 I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

    John is understanding that these occasional doubts may arise, and hence is trying to provide assurance to the occasional lapse of skepticism.

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 12/04/2006 8:23 PM  

  • Matthew "Dawn, do not forget that the false prophets referred to in that passage are wolves in sheep's clothing. If fruit refers to good works, then they have plenty of it. They seem like fruitful Christians.

    What kind of good or bad fruit would you look for in a prophet if it does not refer to good deeds?
    "

    I think you have to get to know the person to determine whether or not their fruit is truly good. Are they speaking the truth of God's word or are they twisting the truth, etc., etc.

    By Blogger Dawn, at 12/06/2006 12:29 AM  

  • Oh heck. I'll go ahead and give you a hundred!

    By Blogger nathaniel adam king, at 12/08/2006 6:10 PM  

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