Behaviorism Verses Life

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by NetChaplain, Oct 11, 2016.

  1. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    There’s the “being” (Mary - Luk 10:42) and then the “doing” (Martha - v 41), and the more we are established in the former, the more maturity the latter will reveal. It’s an axiom that there can be no doing in Christ if there is no being in Him at all, and the significance to the doing is measured in how much it manifests the One we are in. Concerning the being, there is only one position of placement, e.g. one is either in Christ or not and that place of redemption is at the same degree for all, but the maturity in this placement varies between all.

    The maturity in Christ serves firstly to the individual’s estimation of Him and the Father. Do They love all the same though all are at varying maturity levels? Does Their favor rest with one as much as all the others? Yes and yes! Though I do not think Scripture clearly demonstrates varying degrees in pleasing God, I would suspect that the more one desires to mature in His Son, the more pleasure God has from such, but this would not affect the amount of His love and favor which is the same for all who are His!

    Thus, our maturing is never related to God’s love and favor towards us (which is what we rest in—NC) but is rather related to that which has to do with our manifesting God in our manner of life (conduct), which is gauged by the degree of which we grow in our “love” to others (2Pet 1:7). Conduct, to the degree of significance at which it has in manifesting God within, will always remain inferior to our being in Him. The greater our contemplation of our being in God, the greater success will be our doing for Him.

    - NC


    Behaviorism Verses Life

    All life is inward; only the expression of life is outward. A man’s life, his vitals and vital processes, all are inward, enclosed in a protective skin. An orange is beautiful to look at, but shall we content ourselves with merely talking about its size, shape, color, and skin? No; we want what is inside, as that alone satisfies. Similarly, it is sad that much sermonizing and Bible study fail to take off the wrappings of externals to get at the meat of a satisfying spiritual life.

    There is a constant emphasis upon externals in current Christian thinking. This directly fosters the tragic error in Christendom: Behaviorism. The popular concept of the Christian life is that it consists of conduct*: behave yourself a certain way; do this, don’t do that. It is the not-so-subtle error of legalism: show yourself a good Christian by behaving as one. The net result is that churches are substituting activity and programs for the real life, and hence are busy rearing a generation of superficial, surface Christians.

    Progressive revelation characterizes the Bible. The Lord Jesus did not live under that New Testament, or New Covenant. He first mentions it as instituted by His death: “the new covenant in My blood.” Only when He has died, risen, ascended and given us the Holy Spirit is the New Testament in force. It is a new agreement, a new way of living, based on these facts*. Hence the Gospel, how to receive this life and how to live it, is found in the Epistles*, and particularly those written by the Apostle Paul.

    The Lord Jesus said, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now”—not until the New Covenant is operative. When did He ever say them? “When He, the Spirit of truth is come, He will guide you into all truth.” The Lord Jesus’ “many things” are given by the Spirit in the Epistles. Only as we give heed to this distinctive New Testament way of living, entrusted mainly to Paul and taught by the Spirit in the epistles, do we honor the glorified Lord Jesus.

    With this transition from law to life a new terminology is developed to fit the new situation. Often those who believed in the Lord Jesus had been designated “disciples”: this term is never used in the Epistles. During His lifetime on earth men had been called to “follow” Jesus: they cannot follow Him now. Rather, believers are called to something far more intimate and satisfying—an “in” relationship. Formerly He said, “Come unto Me”: now He says “abide in Me.”

    Not only is the Christian in Christ, but He is in the Christian as the source of new, heavenly life (which those in the OT could not experience while on the earth—NC). The branch receives all its life from the vine; as we abide in Him we draw upon Him for the qualities of life which are in Him alone. Often a man is heard to say, “I’m trying to live a Christian life,” which means that he is depending upon himself to do it. His resource is himself. Along with many others in our churches today he is substituting a good life for a Christian life.

    - N B Harrison



    Poster’s Opinion:
    * “consists of conduct”: e.g. thinking that our primary make up is of that which one does. Though this is primary to how one manifests God, it is never related to our being in Him. -If conduct was truly as significant as it is emphasized, there would be much lacking among all. The conduct of everyone born again is in an ever-progressing conformity which will never affect our place in God but serves most to manifest that which is of the greatest importance to God—our son-ship in the Lord Jesus.

    * “a new way of living, based on these facts”: In the prior Covenant these facts (Christ’s life, death, burial, resurrection and ascension) were not available for use but were only foreshadows of them (Heb 10:1), therefore the OT saints were in the place of guidance by God’s Spirit, and the NT saints are in the place of direct control (Rom 8:13; Gal 5:17; Eph 3:16) by the indwelling of God’s Spirit.

    * “found in the Epistles”: many of the Gospel conditions and results of earthly saints are identified in the Gospels (cf. Mat 5), i.e. “the kingdom of heaven” is to those who are “poor in spirit.” “The meek shall inherit the earth, “ etc., but how to receive and live in them are primarily stated in the Epistles.


    Miles J Stanford Devotional:
    http://www.abideabove.com/hungry-heart/day/2016/10/11/
     
  2. utilyan

    utilyan
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    Jesus' sermon on the mount is the perfect and complete gospel nothing lacking.

    We can see Jesus preaching to fresh ears they were even shocked and amazed at the end. Had anyone been already born again they would not have been surprised by anything Jesus said at all.

    He even ends with clearly stating his words are FOUNDATIONAL.

    Matthew 7 26“Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.


    He could have said the epistles are foundational, a sinners prayer is foundational, Accept me as Lord and savior is foundational. He did not. He said acting on his words is foundational.

    24“Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock.


    The epistles can disappear today and nothing is lost.

    Behaviorism label might already be taken, summed up in the excuse "well I'm only human" instinctual animal excuses for sin.


    The goal of Christianity is GOOD CONDUCT.

    1 Timothy 1

    5But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.


    Good conduct is what it is. If someone FAKES good conduct or embraces legalism.....that is called BAD CONDUCT.

    Finally it is self refuting to criticize folks that emphasize Good Conduct. Because if conduct did not matter neither would the "bad" conduct of emphasizing GOOD conduct.



    Folks love to emphasize the importance of who Jesus is at the expense of what he commands to do.

    Even the Devil clearly knows who Christ is and believes. His problem is he won't do what Christ says to do.
     
  3. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    I believe Jesus revealed in the Gospels what we are to do, and He through the writers of the Epistles explains in more complete detail for understanding more clearly of what He taught.

    Receiving Him saves (Gospels). But one is not to stop there but instead grow from there (Epistles).

    I do not see the fruit being the goal but rather the means of revealing the goal--relationship with and glorifying God (Mat 5:16) to others.

    I don't see the article criticizing but encouraging believers to put relationship ahead of good conduct for many think works (conduct) are what determines our relationship with God.
     
  4. utilyan

    utilyan
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    I have good news for you.

    Jesus Christ is ten thousand times more clear then any epistle to follow.


    "I do not see the fruit being the goal but rather the means of revealing the goal--relationship with and glorifying God (Mat 5:16) to others."

    Galatians 5
    22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.


    1 timothy 1
    5But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.


    Romans 13
    8Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. 9For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” 10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

    Galatians 5

    14For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”



    Brother I would suggest contemplating the value of Love God and Love Neighbor. I guarantee there is no treasure in heaven or on earth greater then this.


    If you can love God for one moment that is greater then a thousand Disney lands or countless paradises for eternity.



    If your still asking "what is in it for me?" for loving God, you haven't quite loved God yet.




    God values his own love for you on the sake that it is love for you. He doesn't do it to expect a return, just the opposite would sacrifice his own son. God treasures you just the way you are.

    When God wakes up every morning his immediate joy is his love for you. He knows you love the right things.
     
  5. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    My friend in Christ, it's Jesus who reveals more of what He is teaching us to know--through the Epistles. Relationship is what we have in Christ, and what we do shows this relationship. Just trying to stress this in this order.

    Amen! One cannot practically love God (regardless the degree of desire to love) apart from loving others (1Jhn 4:20), and this is accomplished by putting others before yourself (Phl 2:3), none of which can be established without the Spirit (Rom 8:9).

    [QUOTE="utilyan, post: 2260373, member: 12747" God values his own love for you on the sake that it is love for you. [/QUOTE]
    Amen and I like the way you worded this. His love does not function according to the quality of His object but according to His nature, which is nothing but love, "for God is love" (1Jhn 4:8).

    Always appreciate your replies, and God bless!
     
  6. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    Just in mentioning I wanted to point out that my intention for posting this article is to indicate the difference between our relationship with God and our walk with Him. Our "being" in God has only to do with our union with Him. Our "doing" or walk in God has only to do with how we "draw" near to Him and how He uses us to reach others by manifesting (glorifying) Him to others through "works" (Mat 5:16), which is never related to the union we have with Him through the Lord Jesus.

    Though our redemption has nothing to do with our works, other than choosing to believe which IMO is not a work, our works have everything to do with our fellowship with Him, e.g. how close we draw to God and one another!
     
  7. utilyan

    utilyan
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    I agree in terms of nothing you can do to earn God's favor. But I also don't believe a favor based on status of believing. Paul is example of intervention despite his non-belief.

    Peoples measure of redemption is ......well I guess God is not going to shoot me or fry in fire.

    God's measure of redemption (if you need to call it that) is you fully regenerated to your perfect self.



    John 6

    28Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” 29Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.”

    Do you still believe that believing is not a work?



    James 4
    8Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. 10Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.

    It doesn't say GOD draw nears you and you will draw near to him.


    God has provided every provision and capability for you to not sin, When you do sin it is your fault not God's.

    Matthew 6

    14“For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15“But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.

    It does not say if GOD forgives you first then you will forgive others.


    The reason why the ball is in your court FIRST is otherwise you would be accusing God of neglect and making it HIS FAULT that you are lacking and a sinner.

    We often hear REPENT meaning like a change of mind.

    Well GOD doesn't have to REPENT for you to be holy. YOU NEED to repent.

    It is not on God, he has provided everything for you, there is NO excuse for any sin.

    God does not repent one day and say....well today I am going to provide this sinner the tools he needs to repent. The subtle accusation here is he neglected you before.


    Love God is a work. You want to split the meaning of Love God from fellowship or as a preliminary to a greater reward.

    LOVE GOD is a work. If we go to heaven, grab one of their dictionaries and look up LOVE GOD, the first thing you going to see is a "WORK".....JESUS CHRIST.

    Love God and Love neighbor is the commandment, Jesus Christ is that commandment ALIVE.

    Love God, Love Neighbor, Jesus Christ. <-- Get rid of one, you get rid of all three.



    There is nothing on your part to why God loves you. There is no STATUS or certain belief or believing to why God loves you.


    The CROSS is OUR WORK. Jesus shared credit of the cross with us. We are baptized into his death and are promised life. Our gift to God is Jesus Christ.

    Romans 6

    3Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7for he who has died is freed from sin.




    Its like you were on this team fighting to join God's team, only to see Jesus wearing YOUR TEAM's colors walk to the front from behind you. He joined your team first. He is one of us, he is OURS.
     
  8. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    We can receive nothing concerning redemption apart from believing in God's provision for it, unless I'm misunderstanding you.

    Need more clarification here.

    I've yet to encounter anyone with this concept.

    Not sure what you mean by "if you want to call it that" but what is regenerated is your your being within your spirit and person-hood (nature). As we know the body is regenerated later. Concerning perfection of self, only that which is of the Spirit in our new nature is perfect, of which we are "partakers" (2Pet 1:4).

    What I mean by faith is not a work is that our faith is not something that is a work of man but of God, for it is given from Him and does not originate with man, hence not a work of man, but a "work of God," which man works from after receiving it.

    IMO, everything a believer does which is good (according God's Word) is considered a "work of God" in man, because He is always causing this is us (Phl 2:13), thus it's all God working through man,e.g. it's all God.
     
  9. utilyan

    utilyan
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    Paul was non-believer, Blasphemer of God, persecutor of Christians, He never repented, had no faith in God. Completely unqualified in every manner to receive mercy or salvation by the standards of many here. Yet God intervenes on his behalf and saves him.

    He certainly did no good works nor believed rightly to receive this mercy.



    "IMO, everything a believer does which is good (according God's Word) is considered a "work of God" in man, because He is always causing this is us (Phl 2:13), thus it's all God working through man,e.g. it's all God."

    "work of God in man"

    Give me an example of a GOOD WORK that originates with man rather then God.

    I would think any work that isn't a work of God is just an evil work and sin even.
     
  10. NetChaplain

    NetChaplain
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    This is the same for all who are in the Book of Life, whom God foreknew would receive faith and salvation instead of rejecting them.

    I agree here and I evidently didn't make this clear enough. All good works "through" man are from God within man!
     

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