Can a Calvinist know for sure?

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Roy1, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. Roy1

    Roy1
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    Can a Calvinist know for sure of his salvation on this side of eternity?
    If perseverance is such a major part of the doctrine and the Calvinist has not yet died how does he know he will make it to the end?

    This is an honest question, no hidden agenda; I would dearly love to know from a Calvinist how can he be sure of his alvation?

    Roy
     
  2. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
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    Yes, by reading SCripture and experiencing the work of God in our lives. Scripture tells us what the basis of assurance is.
     
  3. Jarthur001

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    one of many passages show how salvation is in the hands of God.

    eph 1

    verse 1,2
    Paul..by the will of God...grace and peace to you.

    3...
    We (the Church).are blessed

    4...
    we are blessed...for He choose us (election)

    5...
    we are blessed for he predestinated us (this is not election)

    6...
    we are blessed for He made us accepted

    7...
    we are blessed for He redeemed us

    8...
    we are blessed for he gave us wisdom and prudence

    9, 10...
    we are blessed for he made known unto us the mystery of His will..(understanding of God)

    11, 12..
    we are blessed for he gives us inheritance. (comes from being predestined..but is not the point)

    13, 14...
    we are blessed for he seals us


    SEALED....like a kings seal. No one can remove this seal save the king. We can not remove this seal. bad deeds can not remove this seal. This is the kings seal.

    and the King says...NO one will take them from my hands


    In Christ...james
     
  4. Scott J

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    My understanding, and I think the misunderstanding of many critics of calvinism, is this:

    I understand the 5th point to mean that the genuinely saved will persevere.

    Many critics seem to want to turn it around to, "If you persevere you are genuinely saved".

    The first is a statement of absolute security in the promise of God.

    The second is a statement of insecurity.
     
  5. johnp.

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    Hello Roy.
    Yes he can and should know otherwise he must fear falling. 1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. Assurance from our lover God is fundamental to our comfort and peace. We trust Him who said: I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life. John 6:47. And you can't lose everlasting life otherwise it was not everlasting.

    If you believe that Jesus Christ died for your sins you will not face judgement. John 6:29 Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent."
    When you believe He died for your sins you will believe in the perseverance of the saints because no charge can be brought against us because Jesus died for our sins. Arminians do not believe Jesus died for their sins so they can never find the peace that passes understanding. I am at peace with my Maker because Jesus died for my sins and I believe He died for my sins. :cool:

    john.
     
  6. johnp.

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    :cool: Praise the Lord! I believe man! Praise the Lord! :cool:
     
  7. 4His_glory

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    Because my salvation is all of God, I know it is secure. When I used to be an Arminian I was always plauged with doubts but not anymore.

    I can say with Paul:

    For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Rm. 8:38-39 [NKJV]
     
  8. Scott J

    Scott J
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    Me too.
     
  9. philg

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    Where is the assurance in light of Calvins evanescent grace?“... Experience shows that the reprobate are sometimes affected in a way so similar to the elect that even in their own judgment there is no difference between them. Hence, it is not strange, that by the Apostle a taste of heavenly gifts, and by Christ himself a temporary faith is ascribed to them. Not that they truly perceive the power of spiritual grace and the sure light of faith; but the Lord, the better to convict them, and leave them without excuse, instills into their minds such a sense of goodness as can be felt without the Spirit of adoption .... there is a great resemblance and affinity between the elect of God and those who are impressed for a time with a fading faith .... Still it is correctly said, that the reprobate believe God to be propitious to them, inasmuch as they accept the gift of reconciliation, though confusedly and without due discernment; not that they are partakers of the same faith or regeneration with the children of God; but because, under a covering of hypocrisy they seem to have a principle of faith in common with them. Nor do I even deny that God illumines their mind to this extent .... there is nothing inconsistent in this with the fact of his enlightening some with a present sense of grace, which afterwards proves evanescent” (3.2.11, Institutes).

    Just curious.
     
  10. philg

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    How long must they persevere? To the end? Would that mean you could not know until you were dead?
    How do you know there is no chance that you will not continue to persevere? And then there is evanescent grace?
     
  11. Scott J

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    You have done precisely what I said in my post Phil.

    We aren't saved because we persevere. We persevere because we are saved.

    One of my major problems with arminianism is a fixation on human effort (though it is denied). Perseverence is by the power of the Holy Spirit working within us. It isn't a question of whether we are doing the right things to persevere... that's an arminian concern.

    He who began a good work in us will complete it. Romans 8 is not ambiguous- "29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."
     
  12. Scott J

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    You will note that "evanescent grace" is not a concept based on particular actions by an individual but rather by the attitude of their hearts.

    These people will know if they compare themselves to scripture as we are commanded to do.
     
  13. rc

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    The SAME question has to be asked TO Arminians also. Calvinists claim their salvation is secure by the Holy Spirit. It is SECURE and it will persevere. The description of the misunderstanding by 4hisglory is correct. People think of persevere as something to have TO DO till salvation. (This actually is the proper view of the ARMINIANS)

    The Calvinist description is Perseverance is something that is done BECAUSE of salvation and is done by the Holy Spirit.

    Insecurity is with the Arminians. If you by your will CHOOSE God. There is no REASON that you will not CHOOSE to go away from God. No assurance at all.
     
  14. johnp.

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    Hello philg nice to meet you. :cool:
    This is the first time I've heard of this. I am sure from scripture that the Lord draws some men to the very edge of Heaven but still not save them. How do we know we are not one of them? We don't look at ourselves but we trust God. Nothing else matters.
    We do not need to persevere as we are not guilty because Jesus died for our sins. We will persevere because Jesus died for our sins. We cannot be found guilty because Jesus was found guilty and died for my sins. That is how I know I'm saved. Jesus died for my sins and yet He lives.
    I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life.
    Those who are born again are safe forever from that moment.
    Romans 8:16 For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father." 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

    What you think?

    john.
     
  15. Roy1

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    Hi Scot,
    Can you expand on this a little, it still seems I little unclear.
    Does it mean that all those that say they are saved, are genuine? That there is no possibility of a false profession? Even from those that call themselves Calvinists. It looks like until the end there is still a possibility of being lost.

    I am not too concerned about the Armenian view at the moment, they have there own problems.

    It is to the Calvinists that I am seeking an answer from.

    Are they 100% sure today, if so what is the issue of perseverance. It just seems to confuse the issue of security.

    Thanks for all the replies so far.

    Roy
    [​IMG]
     
  16. philg

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    Scott, 1st I am not a arminian.
    My question is this. How do you know that you are one of the elect? Do you know this becasue you beleive? If this is the case does everyone who beleives persevere to the end?

    per·se·ver·ance ( P ) Pronunciation Key (pûrs-vîrns)
    n.
    Steady persistence in adhering to a course of action, a belief, or a purpose; steadfastness.

    The bible does speak of those who believe for a while and then fall away.
    And then there is evanescent grace.
    I agree that perseverance is of the Holy Spirit but how do you know you are of the elect and that you will continue to persevere?
     
  17. johnp.

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    persevering by persevering would be a work

    to believe the death of Christ was undertaken on my behalf is salvation

    i must not concern myself with the thought of persevering but on Christ and Him crucified

    it is by faith not by works

    john.
     
  18. rc

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    2 Peter 1:2-10 2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. 3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to(1 )his own glory and excellence,(2) 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. 5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue,(1 )and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities (1 )are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers,(1 )be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure , for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.

    Usually questions of security are asked by those who are in unrepentant sin. I'm not saying anybody here is, but it is a fact I've found in all my counseling. Take hold of the PROMISES of God, and delight in Him. You will be assured.
     
  19. philg

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    Johnp and RC.The question still stands. How do you know you are one of the elect?
     
  20. rc

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    Because I delight in the Lord and BELIEVE in His promises. My heart has been CHANGED, I KNOW. I have recieved Christ. That abiblity isn't given to those who do not believe.

    Read 1 John. You can KNOW that you are saved.

    The Question still stands for you Phil, how do YOU know you are elect?
     

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