God uses means

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Rippon, Oct 9, 2014.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Rippon

    Rippon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    17,404
    Likes Received:
    328
    This subject is related to another thread which may be closing down because of its length pretty soon.

    Donald S. Fortner is a preacher of the Gospel. He is also an author of hymns and other helps. I will quote some snips from his book on Basic Bible Doctrine. It was published ten years ago. His words are sound.

    "This is a matter of immense importance. 'It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe'. God does not by-pass the means that he has ordained for the salvation of his elect. To suggest that he may is utterly ludicrous. It is God's pleasure to save his elect by the preaching of the gospel.

    God saves his elect, gives them life and faith in Christ, by the sovereign power of his Spirit, only through the instrumentality of the preaching of the gospel. Let men say what they will in opposition to that statement, offering example after example of others who have been 'saved' without the use of means. That leaves us with two choices. We can either build our doctrine on the shifting sand of human reason and experience, or we can build our doctrine on the plain statements of Holy Scripture. We must build our doctrines of holy Scripture, no matter how much they may contradict and nullify our thoughts and experiences.

    The Scriptures do address this issue plainly and forcibly, setting before us this fact :God saves his people by the gospel. He does not save sinners without the gospel, apart from the gospel, or by believing a false gospel."
    (p.414,415)
     
    #1 Rippon, Oct 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 9, 2014
  2. Rippon

    Rippon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    17,404
    Likes Received:
    328
    Continuing to quote snips from Donald S. Fortner's book Basic Bible Doctrine.

    "Notice once more that great emphasis is placed upon the instrumentality of gospel preaching in the gracious operations of God. As in regeneration and in effectual calling, so also in conversion, the Lord God is pleased to save his elect through the instrumentality of gospel preaching (James 5:19,20). James tells us, by divine inspiration, that God uses human instrumentality to accomplish his purpose of grace toward chosen sinners.

    God is pleased, in his infinite, inscrutable wisdom, to work the conversion of his elect by the instrumentality of converted sinners...

    1. The use of human instruments is in no way a necessity with God. It is his pleasure.
    2. The employment of human instruments in the work of saving his people is honoring to God, both as an act of amazing, condescending grace and as an act of infinite wisdom and sovereignty.
    3. If God almighty is pleased to use you, or me, or any other human being for the conversion of his elect, it will be the conferring of the highest honour upon us." (p.421)
     
  3. Thousand Hills

    Thousand Hills
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2010
    Messages:
    1,488
    Likes Received:
    4
    Spurgeon - Morning By Morning 10/8
     
  4. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,890
    Likes Received:
    0
    :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:

    I do have a question. Is Fortner "saying" that the "preaching of the Word" is a formal worship setting? Is one person sharing their faith, experience and knowledge of the gospel with another "preaching"?
     
  5. JamesL

    JamesL
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2013
    Messages:
    2,246
    Likes Received:
    76
    Many here would probably prefer to think that man uses means, gaining entrance into God's grace by saying a prayer.

    I happen to agree with your posts, at least for the most part. God sends someone to preach the gospel. When that good seed penetrates the heart of a man, he believes upon Christ. He doesn't believe by his own effort, he simply becomes a believer passively through the conviction and enlightenment of the Holy Spirit.

    Most people mistakenly think that believing is a work, a choice we make, or somehow is left for a man to pull the trigger. Even the Reformers held/hold thus error.

    God does not give us a spiritual water gun called faith, then expect us to aim it at Christ and pull the trigger.
     
  6. Rippon

    Rippon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    17,404
    Likes Received:
    328
    Fortner doesn't limit preaching to a formal worship setting.

    "t is God's invariable rule that he converts sinners by the instrumentality of converted sinners. Specifically, sinners who, in one way or another, preach the gospel to them." (p.421)
     
  7. Rippon

    Rippon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    17,404
    Likes Received:
    328
    Charles H. Spurgeon urged lay people (he wouldn't have used that term) to go out and preach the gospel, share, exhort, or read a sermon. Many of his sermons were read aloud and were used to bring a number to the Lord.

    These days a mighty abridgement would have to be made of orally read Spurgeon sermons. His mentor in the faith (whom he never met), was Joseph Irons. Now that man could preach! Meaty stuff. Every sentence was a gold nugget. It would be hard to condense Joseph Irons. He can't be contained!
     
  8. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    38,332
    Likes Received:
    786
    Amen! :thumbs:
     
  9. salzer mtn

    salzer mtn
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2012
    Messages:
    1,581
    Likes Received:
    26
    Don Fortner, pastor of Grace Baptist church of Danville, Danville Ky. I have heard him in person many times.
     
  10. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,927
    Likes Received:
    96
    Not Martin Luther. He preached that man made no contribution to ones salvation...it was all by Gods grace alone.
     
  11. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,927
    Likes Received:
    96
    Horse manure. Tell that to those who, for what ever reason, don't or cant hear the gospel. Sorry but you guys are missing something very big here.
     
    #11 Earth Wind and Fire, Oct 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 9, 2014
  12. Rippon

    Rippon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    17,404
    Likes Received:
    328
    EW&F, you dismissed the above with distain. Could you please address your problems with it in a specific manner? Go line by line if you have to.
     
  13. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    38,332
    Likes Received:
    786
    Tell it ot the author of th op and show me in scripture about those people.
     
  14. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,927
    Likes Received:
    96
    Ahhhh no....that guy is on ignore.....why don't you show me in scripture where they are REVERAND:rolleyes:
     
  15. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    38,332
    Likes Received:
    786
    What? You want me to go in to scripture and show you how to make your point?
     
  16. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,927
    Likes Received:
    96
    Forget you....ive already made my point on previous posts...go in the archives and find it....as for Rippon..... This message is hidden because Rippon is on your ignore list.:laugh:
     
    #16 Earth Wind and Fire, Oct 10, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 10, 2014
  17. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Messages:
    18,927
    Likes Received:
    96
    Now James....if you know anything about the "Old School Baptists " societies,ie the Primitive Baptists, The Old Regular Baptists and alike, we believe in salvation is totally by grace (sola gratia).There are really only two positions that a person can occupy on this matter. One is that salvation is by grace, and the other is that salvation is by works. It cannot be a combination of the two. A person may say that he believes in salvation by grace, but if he sets forth any act of man's will, such as repentance, faith, baptism, or hearing the gospel, as a condition for obtaining it, then this position must be put on the works side. We believe that salvation is of the Lord, that it is by His grace, and that nothing needs to be added to it.

    Gotta go to work now....look us up if you get a chance....I think you would find us refreshing.
     
    #17 Earth Wind and Fire, Oct 10, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 10, 2014
  18. pinoybaptist

    pinoybaptist
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2002
    Messages:
    8,123
    Likes Received:
    1
    To understand what it means when one says God does not use "means" you need to understand the reality of the concept of salvation being both "eternal" and "timely".

    Some say we are preaching two kinds of salvation, so be it. Scripture bears us out. Our own preachers mostly say it is one salvation, with two aspects, so be it, Scripture still bears this out.

    some say this is heretical, but, if you look closely that is exactly what it is.
    God does not use means in the eternal salvation of all His elect in this time world. The blood, and only the blood, is the instrument for their redemption, and adoption.

    God does use means in the timely salvation of those whom He already redeemed. These means are His creation, the gospel, the Scriptures, preachers.

    The discussants in the other thread simply could not see each other eye to eye on this, so that thread goes every which way.

    I will be out of town for a day or two, and if you want to continue this, let's.
    And if the other thread is closed for whatever reason, then we'll have our little discourse here.

    catcha later.:thumbsup:
     
  19. pinoybaptist

    pinoybaptist
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2002
    Messages:
    8,123
    Likes Received:
    1
    Icon:

    I hope there aren't too many misspellings on here. If there are, please be patient.
    I tried to hold up answering until I got home tomorrow, but my host said I can use the computer as long as I like.
    Well, I don't want to use their computer as long as I like and wear out my welcome, if there is such a thing among brethren.
    Anyway.
    I tried to look up your original post on Jonah, couldn't find it, or maybe I don't know how to do the search that well.
    The reason I am looking it up is because I want to see the context of discussion.
    Was it "means" for and unto eternal salvation ?
    If it was, then I stand by what I said.
    God never uses means, whether men, the Bible, tracts, preaching, the gospel unto eternal salvation.
    He alone saved His people for eternity with Him.
    The blood alone was the agency for their redemption, atonement, and eternal salvation.

    For gospel, or timely salvation, yes, God uses means, the main one of which is preaching the gospel to which ONLY the regenerated already responds. This is limited since man is limited in presence, therefore not all of the elect will hear the gospel, or, considering when the gospel began to be preached and spread, have heard the gospel.

    Jonah was sent to the men of Nineveh not for their eternal salvation, but for their timely, in this time world, salvation, and God has prepared beforehand the king's heart for this call to repentance. The message was " And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried , and said , Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown . Jonah 3:4

    Here's the entire context:


    So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.

    And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying , Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed , nor drink water:

    But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.

    Who can tell if God will turn and repent , and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?


    So, did God use means in the case of Jonah ?
    Yes, as you pointed out the whale, the storm, the boat.
    But Jonah is one of God's own already.
    And he is to be the bearer of news, bad as it sounds, to people whom God wanted to spare from His punishment, here in time, not for eternity.

    Were all the people of Nineveh God's elect ?
    I doubt it.
    The king, maybe, and some among the people, surely.
    But, in any case, the message from Jonah was not a message of redemption, but of Godly repentance in order to be spared from wrath IN THIS TIME WORLD.
    If Romans 15:4 is true, which says "whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for OUR LEARNING....." then the lesson from Jonah is as Peter states in his epistle, concerning God's own: God is not willing that any should perish.

    Is it perish in hell ?
    if it is, then the blood of Jesus Christ was for nothing.
    No, it is perish in ignorance, here in time, as in, "my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6)".

    We're headed out for dinner.
    see ya tomorrow afternoon.
     
    #19 pinoybaptist, Oct 10, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 10, 2014
  20. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Messages:
    13,381
    Likes Received:
    728
    pinoybaptist

    Hello PYB....thanks for your response:thumbs:
    We know that those people repented at that time and were later on destroyed.


    I believe several of us have shown in scripture...where God uses means.

    PYB....this is where your beliefs depart from scripture. If you are going to make head way you have to address this, as time permits.

    No one disputes that Jesus alone is mediator and surety for all the Covenant children.
    The blood alone was expiation , and propitiation for all of the sins of His people. Jesus sinless righteous life and perfect law keeping,and His mediatorial intercession along with the sending of the Spirit to provide Divine enablement for those He came to save are also essential.

    I have an idea what you might mean by this statement...but when you have time...I would like you to fully explain what YOU think this term means.

    How do you think scripture makes this somehow unrelated to Eternal salvation? Show me how you think this happened to Saul for example...or the three thousand at Pentecost.

    God uses means,
    ok
    While the regenerated do respond....is there a process with this?
    are their other factors or means that God employs?
    Do missionaries need to go into all the world?

    Explain this language if you could....limited? what is limited, and in what way limited?
    If you are speaking of elect infants, or elect mentally handicapped persons.... that is God's business how he regenerates them.

    However ....this idea that there are "elect persons" who are worldwide that never hear the gospel and yet...some how get saved is completely without a shred of biblical support.




    I brought up Jonah...only to show God uses means in every aspect of life when kyred and then you said the mosquito was not part of what God controls in His providence. I demonstrated from Jonah that point alone, God prepared....a fish, a storm, a gourd, a worm....God was active in each realm.

    For the purpose of this discussion I do not care what the Ninevites did or did not do....that was not the point.


    Were all the people of Nineveh God's elect ?

    God used means toward unbelievers ...is the point...the results of the means belong to God. It would be wrong to say that God does not use means.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

Loading...