"Eternal life" - what Calvinists don't want you to know

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Ben Elohim, Mar 4, 2005.

  1. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    One will find Calvinists make much of John's words concerning "eternal life." They like to claim that "eternal life" means they are forever saved. If John says we "have eternal life," the Calvinist concludes his salvation is therefore never ending by definition. He decides that his salvation is eternal or it isn't eternal, never ending or it isn't never ending, and since the Bible says it is eternal he cannot fall short of salvation on the last day and his salvation is therefore never ending. Let us first look at the passages which they employ to try and support this notion of theirs. Then we shall expose their error.

    * "He who believes in the Son has eternal life; he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God rests upon him" (John 3:36).

    * "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears my word and believes him who sent me, has eternal life; he does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life" (John 5:24).

    * "And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son..... I write this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life" (1 John 5:11,13).

    Notice carefully how all the above passages teach that believing Christians presently have eternal life. The Calvinist also wants you to notice this carefully so that he can conclude that your salvation is an never ending thing which means you are forever saved and cannot fall short of salvation on the last day. However, there is something the Calvinist does not tell you. Let us look at some more passages from Scripture which will now begin to illuminate his error. Notice WHEN eternal life begins in the following passages.

    * "And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to eternal life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt" (Daniel 12:2).

    * "Jesus said to them, "Truly, I say to you, in the regeneration of all things, WHEN the Son of man shall sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And every one who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name's sake, will receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life (Mt 19:29)."

    * "WHEN] the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne... the King will say to those at his right hand, "Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.... And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life." (Mt 25:31-46).

    * "For he will render to every man according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life.... on that Day WHEN, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men through Christ Jesus" (Romans 2:6-16).

    * "For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, because we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen; for the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.... We walk by faith, not by site" (2 Cor 4:17-5:1).

    * "But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of deeds done by us in righteousness, but in virtue of his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal in the Holy Spirit, which he poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that we might be justified by his grace and we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life" (Titus 3:4-7).

    * "Keep yourselves in the love of God; awaiting the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." (Jude 21).

    These passages certainly say something quite different than what the Calvinist wants you to believe about "eternal life." Here, eternal life is a condition of immortality which begins when Jesus Christ returns. Indeed, Paul has the hope of eternal life, not in the sense that he has doubts about the reality of this hope, but the very fact it is a hope illustrates it is a future thing for which he eagerly awaits (see Romans 8:23-25). There are several more passages which convey the same idea. So how can the Calvinist claim he already has the condition of eternal life if it is not yet given to him until the end of the age? Of course, we can always expect vague and contrived responses like obtaining eternal life in a "fuller" way? The reasonable person will see the absurdity of receving eternal life in a "fuller way." As the Calvinist himself argues, he either has it or he doesn't.

    So how can we make sense out of this? How does one presently have eternal life as described in John's writings, but one does not obtain eternal life until the end of the age as described in all the other books of the Bible? The answer is clear and is found in the Scriptures. In John, eternal life means something different than in the other passages of Scripture. In John, it is not a condition but a person. Notice what eternal life means in John's writings:

    * "In him was life, and the life was the light of men" (John 1:4).

    * "For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself" (John 5:26).

    * "I am the bread of life" (John 6:35).

    * "For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven, and gives life to the world" (John 6:33).

    * "I am the bread of life" (John 6:48).

    * "I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever. And the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh." (John 6:51).

    * "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. " (John 6:54).

    * "I am the resurrection and the life" (John 11:25).

    * "I am the way, the truth and the life" (John 14:6).


    * "And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who has not the Son of God has not life" (1 John 5:11-12).

    * "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life, the life was made manifest, and we saw it, and testify to it, and proclaim to you the Eternal Life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us" (1 John 1:1-2).


    * "And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, to know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and Eternal life." (1 John 5:20).

    Here we can see clearly that in John, the words "eternal life", refer to Jesus Christ himself. This is why Jesus repeatedly reminds us that if we have faith in him, we have eternal life. In other words, if we have a faith union with him, we have union with Christ and since we are in Christ and Christ is this eternal life we therefore have union with eternal life. When John says anyone has eternal life, he is referring to the power of life in Christ Jesus, not an abstract condition of infinite salvation. If indeed one has Christ, he has eternal life dwelling in him because Jesus is himself the essence of eternal life. He is the Resurrection and the Life.

    This is why we are to have faith in Jesus, so that we can have eternal life. If we are united to him in faith, we are united to eternal life because eternal life is what he is. But if we deny him, we are no longer united to that eternal life. This is why Paul tells people to test themselves to see if Christ is really in them (2 Cor 13:5). If he is in us, we have eternal life dwelling within us because eternal life is what he is. If we find he is not in us, we will not have eternal life dwelling in us, because we do not have him who is that eternal life. In John, eternal life is not an abstract condition describing the state of infinite salvation. It is a term used to describe Jesus Christ who dwells in us and to be saved unto eternal life at the end of the age, we must remain in him, the Eternal Life.

    So when John says that those who are believing have eternal life, he is saying that those who are united with Jesus have eternal life because he is that eternal life. John does not, and did not, say that once one has believed into Jesus, this person henceforth has a condition of never ending salvation. John DID say that if one is believing then one has eternal life, and he says this because that eternal life is Jesus and believing in Jesus means we are remaining in Jesus, the eternal life.

    When we read through all the non-Johannine passages concerning eternal life, we find that it is a future condition for faithful Christians. This is because we will become like Jesus, the Eternal Life, when we our bodies are transformed to be like his glorious risen body and we enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. This is why John says, "And this is what he has promised us, eternal life" (1 Jn 5:25) and "we know that when he appears we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is" (1 John 3:2; cf. 1 Cor 15:45-49; Php 3:20-21). In other words, Jesus is eternal life and we shall be made to be eternal life just like Jesus. Paul says it in this way, "if Christ is in you, your bodies are dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness and if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit which dwells in you" (Romans 8:10-11; cf. 2 Cor 1:22; 5:5). If Jesus the eternal life dwells in us and we remain in him, then we will become eternal life when he comes.

    John is not telling anyone they have the abstract condition of eternal life as if it were infinite salvation. He is telling us that if we are united with the Son, then we have eternal life because the Son himself is eternal life. But if we do not remain in the Son we no longer have him who is that eternal life. Indeed, he tells us that if we remain in what we have heard from the beginning we will receive eternal life as he promised us (1 Jn 2:24-25). For this reason, Jesus exhorts his disciples to remain in him so that they will not be thrown into the fire (John 15:1-6).

    So we again expose the trickery devised in Calvinism. Having the existential condition of eternal life is something we will receive at the end of the age if indeed we are faithful to God until the end. However, we can now be sharers in the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4) and that divine nature is the eternal life of the Son who is the eternal life. So if we have Jesus, that is, if we are united with Jesus in faith, then we have eternal life because he IS that life. But if we depart from faith in him, we no longer are united to the Son and no longer united to eternal life since he is that life. Jesus is Eternal Life, not us. Our condition of eternal life will begin on that Day, not now, if indeed we remain in our Eternal life, Jesus Christ our Life. Eternal life in John is not simply a condition of never ending life. It is the reality of having Eternal life in our hearts - Jesus Christ.

    "I AM the Resurrection and the Life." - Jesus

    "Remain in me." - Jesus
     
  2. James_Newman

    James_Newman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Messages:
    5,013
    Likes Received:
    0
  3. Doubting Thomas

    Doubting Thomas
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2003
    Messages:
    2,616
    Likes Received:
    6
    Well said! [​IMG]

    Christ is the Vine and we abide in Him by faith if we cease abiding we die because we cut ourselves off as branches, but the eternal life is still there since the Vine remains. (John 15:1-6; Romans 11:19-22)
     
  4. ILUVLIGHT

    ILUVLIGHT
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Let's face it guys Calvinist believe what they want, so they can have there cake and eat it to. The "P" in the tulip is a license to sin and not have to pay for it.
    May Christ Shine His Light On Us All;
    Mike [​IMG]
     
  5. Wes Outwest

    Wes Outwest
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    3,400
    Likes Received:
    0
    What's that about the 'P'?

    Care to expand on it!
     
  6. russell55

    russell55
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0
    No, the P in tulip means that God continues working obedience in those he is saving so that they remain true to him.

    Absolutely everyone who gives themselves a license to sin will most certainly pay for it.

    Perseverence of the saints is different, you know, from OSAS. But hey, it's not as if no one has mentioned this here before. It seems some would rather argue against straw men than real ones, because trying to understand what the real ones believe is just too much work. For one thing, it means you might actually have to pay attention to what they are writing.

    Whatever. I'm a Calvinist, and I could come up with better arguments against my position than the ones being put forward of late in this forum. For one thing, mine would actually be against Calvinism as it is rather than a hollow misrepresentation of Calvinism.
     
  7. whatever

    whatever
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Messages:
    2,088
    Likes Received:
    0
    No, the P in tulip means that God continues working obedience in those he is saving so that they remain true to him.

    Absolutely everyone who gives themselves a license to sin will most certainly pay for it.

    Perseverence of the saints is different, you know, from OSAS. But hey, it's not as if no one has mentioned this here before. It seems some would rather argue against straw men than real ones, because trying to understand what the real ones believe is just too much work. For one thing, it means you might actually have to pay attention to what they are writing.

    Whatever. I'm a Calvinist, and I could come up with better arguments against my position than the ones being put forward of late in this forum. For one thing, mine would actually be against Calvinism as it is rather than a hollow misrepresentation of Calvinism.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Hey Russell,

    I've just about come to the conclusion that these guys would rather repeat things that they know are untrue than to learn and discuss. Maybe it's just easier that way, or maybe they just like to listen to themselves, I don't know. I do know that answering these strawman arguments gets old after a while. Hang in there, brother.

    whatever
     
  8. Wes Outwest

    Wes Outwest
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    3,400
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do you believe OSAS....And that some nebulous group you call "the elect" (the who of which you cannot identify) have no real choice in the matter?

    Perseverence means "Hanging on to your faith in the face of all human trials". If you have to "hang on" through your own will and devotion, then that negates "the elect" for anyone can come to faith and do the hanging on! There simply is no reason for "an elect" other than those that God put into place to cause HIS will to be carried out, e.g. the Apostles, Caiaphas the high priest, Nicodemus, Joseph of Arimathea, Moses, David, the Pharoah, etc.
     
  9. aa0310

    aa0310
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2003
    Messages:
    99
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  10. Bro. James

    Bro. James
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Messages:
    2,639
    Likes Received:
    15
    Jesus to the thief on the cross: "Today you will be with me in paradise".

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  11. russell55

    russell55
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0
    No, the believer has free will. He also has a changed heart and he is a new man. He has God's law written on his heart. He has the Spirit of God working within him to will and to do His good pleasure.

    Let me ask you a question: On the last day when we are glorified, and we are changed so that we will be always obedient forevermore, will we have free will, or does glorification make us all a bunch of machines?
     
  12. Dave

    Dave
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2004
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  13. aa0310

    aa0310
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2003
    Messages:
    99
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  14. aa0310

    aa0310
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2003
    Messages:
    99
    Likes Received:
    0
    No, the believer has free will. He also has a changed heart and he is a new man. He has God's law written on his heart. He has the Spirit of God working within him to will and to do His good pleasure.

    Let me ask you a question: On the last day when we are glorified, and we are changed so that we will be always obedient forevermore, will we have free will, or does glorification make us all a bunch of machines?
    </font>[/QUOTE]I do not think that we will have "free wills" after the Resurrection and Eternal Life begings in the hereafter (I know that it really begins now), as our bodies will be completely changed! Or, are you suggesting that, with our "free wills" in heaven, we could chose to disobey God and sin as we do now? A Christian now can chose to commit murder, adultery, as sadly some do now, but this cannot be possible after we are changed, as there is NO SIN in heaven! Since we all sin in thought, word and deed, the change will make this impossible!
     
  15. russell55

    russell55
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0
    The accusation was made that if God worked to produce obedience within believers then they don't have free will and thus they are only machines. It's a nonsense accusation, and I was trying to show that with my question.

    When we are glorified we won't ever sin, but we certainly won't be machines. We won't be able to sin, and yet we'll be more free than ever--completely free from sin.

    If we won't be machines in glory, then the accusation that God changing us at conversion and working sanctification within us automatically makes us machines is nonsense.

    BTW, I would say that we have free will in glory. We will be doing what we want (which is how I define free will--the ability to do as we desire), but we will never want to sin, because everything that makes us want to sin will be changed. We will have changed inner beings, changed bodies, and the Holy Spirit will dwell within us.
     
  16. Wes Outwest

    Wes Outwest
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    3,400
    Likes Received:
    0
    Something that might help:
    With these characters gone from us forever, who is there that can or would lead us into disobedience of God? With Sin divinely dealt with, and our persons completely changed to the Likeness of the Christ, what influences will there be that can attract us into sin?

    Furthermore, our old natures have been "cleaned up" so to speak, we are no longer inclined toward sin. Too bad, too, 'cause sinning is fun...to the old nature that is! It is replaced by and with worship of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, which will become our joy and strongest and constant yearning.

    The instinct we all have in this life to survive, will no longer be a part of our makeup, because we are in the presence of our Fortress, looked after by Angels. Contentment and Joy will be our everpresent modus operendi.
     
  17. ILUVLIGHT

    ILUVLIGHT
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    The reason Calvinist fight so hard for there dreams of being persevered is because then they can relax. They don't have to worry about the walk any more. God will persevere them IOW's It's up to God to make sure you don't backslide and fall.
    I believe Calvin or Augustine thought this up for the lazy christian. You know the ones who come to church every sunday and say all the right words. Present them selves as Christianly to all the other members and all the while they can't wait to get home and watch the game. They live like Hell all week and come to church on sunday so full of righteousness that it just makes me sick. The reason they live like that is because it's God's responsibility to see they do what is pleasing to God. They over look all the warnings about falling because they reject the clear teaching of scripture.
    All these scriptures are about falling from grace and Calvinist claim it don't exist.
    Hebrews 6:4-6, 10:26-29, 12:15-17, 4:11, Mat 5:13, 12:31-32, 2nd Peter 2:20-22, 21:24, 2:10, 3:17, Luk 8:13, 20;18, 1stCor10:12,1st Tim6:9 1st Jn 5:16 Mark 11:26 Rev 22:18_19, 3:16 Jn 15:6.
    If you find that you believe in the "P" of the tulip I'd suggest you have to disprove God's word first.
    Calvinist have actually claimed that if they sin after regeneration it's because God ordains it. Making God responsible for there sins. They don't see the sin working in there lives to destroy them. They see it as it must be alright other wise God would have stopped them. They've bought Satan's lies that God must have predestined it or it wouldn't be happening.

    Our perseverance is comanded of us by Christ
    Joh 15:9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
    This is our rsponsibility. Those who still need milk shun the meat of responsibility.

    May Christ Shine His Light On Us All;
    Mike [​IMG]
     
  18. Wes Outwest

    Wes Outwest
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    3,400
    Likes Received:
    0
    ILUVLIGHT,
    I believe in the P! I believe it is my PERSONAL PRIVILEGE and RESPONSIBILITY to PERSEVERE in MY FAITH in GOD. It is not God's responsibility to make sure I do!

    So long as I am persevering in my faith in God, He is faithful to help me in MY perseverence. But if I were to rely on Him to persevere for me, He would simply hand it back to me and say this is yours to do! If you persevere to the end, I shall accept you into life everlasting. But if you stop persevering you are on your own!
     
  19. russell55

    russell55
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0
    Or maybe the fight so hard for it because they see it in SCRIPTURE, and they have a high regard for scripture:

    It is God's power--his preserving--that keeps us in the faith for the salvation that's revealed in the last time.

    This is a a lie. I'd fire whoever told you this from his job as your source of info on what Calvinists believe. Calvinists believe that sin is always morally wrong. They don't think it's ever all right. Now that you've been told, please stop the misrepresentations of what Calvinists believe. If you keep it up, then it will be purposeful dishonesty.

    Anyone who lives like Hell all week isn't in the group being preserved by God. Those God is preserving heed the warnings on righteous living.

    There are all sorts of tests we can give ourselves to see if we are among the ones abiding in Christ. The above passage from 1 John is one of them. Those who are being saved treat their fellow Christians with love. This doesn't mean that we have to agree with them on everything. It does mean that we will treat them fairly and do our best not to misrepresent them.
     
  20. ILUVLIGHT

    ILUVLIGHT
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Hi Russel;
    There are a few scriptures that can be used to support your position. If you're honest though you can't just throw out what there is that supports Man having to persevere them selves. Scripture never says God will persevere us Him self, that just isn't true. The OSAS position is not supported as believed.
    You know if you look through enough translations you'll find one that says it the way you want. The truth of the matter is this above is a mistranslation. How ever if in the same translation you look at verse 9 you might get a better idea
    There is nothing in any manuscript that would suggest this view at all;
    "he has caused us to be born again"
    You'll have to do a lot better than that to convince me. Maybe that's why I rely on old King James.
    In Bold above you will notice that our Salvation is Garded by God through faith. No Faith, No Salvation. It isn't God's faith that it is through because there is nothing that God Hasn't seen for Him to need faith for.Since Faith is hope for things unseen.
    I will admit that this is how I see what you believe, but don't call me a liar. On the same hand you offer no other explanation. Calvinist here, have claimed that sin is ordained by God. especially those who believe in double predestination. Men are destroyed for God's good pleasure is there excuse. How about you, do you believe men are sent to hell for God's good pleasure? Do you believe men are predestined for Hell?
    So you admit there are warnings. Then what are the consequences?. Is it Hell or just a good scolding.
    Well I didn't call you a liar. If what I had written was addressed to you then you might have reason to take it personal. However since you brought this up let's air it out.

    A matter of brotherly love from someone who doesn't understand it's principles should be a good argument. Love by the way is impossible with out the freedom of Choice and as long as you believe that man is totally depraved and incapable of Loving God by his own choice, then you'll never understand that God isn't a rapist, forcing His affections on us.

    I don't claim to represent you. I state things as I see them, just as everyone else does. When I spoke of Calvinist I spoke in general terms. Calvinist all see them selves as something different than the other Calvinist. IMO you guy's need to get together on what your going to believe because, the way I see it there is as much division among you all, as there is in all of Christianity. No two alike. But if we're going by test and you claim to be a Christian tell me have you confessed Christ as your Savior and acknowledged Him for who He is. If so then you are indeed my brother. However if you like all other Calvinist I have met believe such confession is not necessary then you are not my brother. Salvation is conditional upon Faith because it is through faith that we have Grace. Eph 2:8 And confession is made unto Salvation.
    Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

    Next time you jump to a conclusion you should consider what your fellow Calvinist believe and not just your self. You know your not the only one here. May I suggest that you start correcting those who get it wrong in your own camp first.
    May Christ Shine His Light On Us All;
    Mike [​IMG]
     

Share This Page

Loading...