Irresistable Grace

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Abiyah, Jan 11, 2003.

  1. Abiyah

    Abiyah
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    As one reared in holiness-Arminianism but now a
    member in a Calvinist congregation, I still have
    many conflicts with regard to various Calvinist
    teachings. Perhaps I will understand them by
    comparing them, one by one.

    Simply put, I do not understand the concept of
    irresistable grace, but I spent my first years spe-
    cifically and forcefully resisting the call of our
    God.

    Without going into great detail, I first felt drawn
    toward Him in a Calvinist service my parents took
    me to when I was 4, but I kicked against the cross-
    bar of the chair and silently shouted, "No! No!
    No!" in my head, in defiance against a God I then
    hated. I resisted, going on from there to live as
    sinfully and hatefully toward our God as a child
    possibly can, doing anything and everything that
    entered my imagination.

    I basically felt no compulsion toward Him after
    that, until I was 14, at which time I was in an Ar-
    minian serrvice, and when we stood at our seats
    for prayer at the end of the service, I began to
    shake so hard, it was like I was receiving an elec-
    trical shock. It was horrid. I had never experi-
    enced anything like that before or since, but
    there was a definite compulsion to fall on my
    knees and repent, which I angrily refused to do.

    The shaking was so violent that a minister, who
    was a good 100 feet away, saw me and came off
    the podium to ask me if I wanted to pray, at whom
    I screamed, "NO!!" again resisting. As soon as I
    screamed at him, the shaking stopped.

    At that time, however, I desired to quit being an
    evil little brat, so I changed myself--turned over
    a new leaf--and started trying to be decent. It
    worked most of the time.

    But I hated our God until I was 22 years of age, at
    which time I realized that He loved me and intend-
    ed nothing but good for me. Now, that was irre-
    stible. I prayed then, for the first time.

    I know that these are simplistic, individual experi-
    ences and may not fall under the true definition
    of irresistible grace, but how do they correlate
    with it?
     
  2. russell55

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    Irresistible grace has only to do with the time that you actually come to salvation. At that point, when the Holy Spirit is drawing you, you will find the draw irresistible.

    There are all kinds of other works of the Holy Spirit that we are able to resist, but this time we won't. So this and only this is what irresistible grace is dealing with:

    At the point we are brought to salvation, the revulsion that we naturally feel to God is overcome, and we finally see him as He actually is--we feel His love for us and His kind intentions toward us.
     
  3. Yelsew

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    How many graces do you think God has?

    Can God dispense his grace? That is, transfer grace from Himself to someone or something separate from him.

    You are created in the Image of God, and you have grace, else you would not behave graciously toward others. Can you dispense your grace, transferring bits of it to others?

    Does Grace save? No! God saves those who Believe in him.
     
  4. Ray Berrian

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    Personally, I think your experiences documented at different ages proves exactly the fact that a person can resist the conviction of God. You put Him off [John 5:40; Acts 7:51 a,b] until age twenty-two until you of your own 'free will' and accord yielded to Christ. [John 1:12] This reality in Christian theology is called, 'Resistible Grace.'

    Also, Hebrews 6:1-6 points to people who received the Holy Spirit and backslid and as Christians never returned to the faith. Sinners can resist the Spirit as well as Christians. In the case of Christians God speaks of this as 'grieving' or 'quenching' the Spirit. [Ephesians 4:30; I Thessalonians 5:19]
     
  5. Primitive Baptist

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    Abiyah,

    I attended Arminian churches as well, and God dealt with me several times before I actually repented and believed the gospel, that is, with the heart. In the experience of Paul, Jesus told him, "It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks" (Acts 9:5). Surely it was hard for us all. I do not believe that your experience neccessarily proves resistible grace no more than I believe that the experience of Paul does. Just remember that if God begins a work, He will finish it (Phil. 1:6). Our Savior said that all those whom the Father gives Him, will come because He came to do the Father's will. The Father's will is that He lose none, and Jesus did not fail.
     
  6. Pastor Larry

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    The concept of irresistable grace is significantly different from what Abiyah, Ray, and Yeslew have posted. The general call of God goes out to all who hear the gospel. That call is always resisted. The effectual call (the better name for irresistable grace) is the setting apart of the Spirit that certainly results in faith and obedience to the truth (2 Thess 2:13; 1 Peter 1;2).

    As for different kinds of grace, yes there are. There is saving grace, sanctifying grace (not altogether separate but certainly distinct), enduring grace, and common grace.
     
  7. Ray Berrian

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    Let me get this staight.

    The General Call goes out to all human life as they hear the Gospel. The Effectual Call is the one that brings in the obedient, elect and is irresistible.

    If God has predestined only certain souls to eternal life, as the Calvinist thinks, then the General Call has to be an insincere one, because the offer of salvation was made to all people but He already predetermined the awful and eternal penalty for the non-elect.

    Again, the erroneous ideas from the bookends of Augustine and Calvin, which muddy the pure waters of God's intention toward human beings.
     
  8. Yelsew

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    Prove it!
     
  9. Pastor Larry

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    In a nutshell.

    Bad logic and bad argumentation. Your conclusion about the general call is faulty becuase it contradicts Scriptures. It involves you asserting your own personal knowledge about the truth that God has revealed to us. This has been explained so many times, it should not have to be again for your sake Ray. If you understood reformed soteriology as you claim you do, you would not make such statements.

    The only thing muddied here is your understanding. Unfortunately, that is what is coloring your response to the word of God.
     
  10. Pastor Larry

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    Are you seriously unaware of this??? These are common distinctions in Scripture and theology that you should be aware of, as much as you profess to know about this subject. I do not say that in any way to insult you. I am seriously amazed that someone with the strong opinions that you have professed here is so seriously unaware of what your are so against. You have spent weeks decrying the evils of something you apparently do not even understand. Why? If you are against something so strongly, don't you think you should at least know what you are against??

    Saving grace -- Eph 2:8
    Sanctifying grace -- Titus 2:11-14 (the grace that saves teaches us to live godly ... etc).
    Enduring grace -- 2 Cor 12-9ff -- At Paul's thorn in the flesh, God said, "My grace is sufficient for you" ... meaning for Paul to endure his thorn in the flesh.
    Common grace -- Matt 5:45; Acts 14:17 -- Common grace is theological category that describes the working and mercy of God among the creation in general. Common grace is the only way in which God can respond towards man prior to salvation. Any good theology will outline this more fully.

    A word to all: Endeavor to become familiar with the things you reject so that you do not reject in ignorance. Be willing to learn and compare to God's word.
     
  11. Primitive Baptist

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    The following is an excerpt from an article by Elder Silas H. Durand written in 1881. Although Pastor Larry and I differ concerning the gospel, I think he will agree with this definition of the general call.

    "If one should be sent with a message from a king to all His subjects in a certain distant land, he would not have to inquire out those subjects before delivering it; for the message itself, proclaimed openly among all the people, would find out those in whose native language it was delivered, and thus distinguish them from all the multitudes as the ones unto whom it was sent. So the gospel is a message of glad tidings sent in the language of Canaan, and though proclaimed among all people, none hear and understand but those who have been taught of God. Unto these, He has "turned a pure language," and by hearing and believing that sweet message they are manifest as those unto whom it was sent by the Great King."

    Notice, it is "proclaimed among all people." The elect are not born with an "elect" mark on their forehead to distinguish them from the world. There is nothing wrong with proclaiming the gospel among all people. However, when we start with the schemes like, "Jesus loves you and wants to save you right now" or "Give your heart to Jesus" that is cheapening the gospel of Christ. Such statements were never used by the Lord or His apostles. Paul said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved." He never said anything about giving God something. The Missionary Baptist church I attended before I came to the Primitive Baptists would not even dare put a "Sinner's prayer" on the gospel tracts for their church, and I don't blame them. Things like that are not the gospel. We should proclaim the gospel, and if God be pleased to bless it for the glory of His name, so be it. But we should never compromise the gospel and make it into a "decision card" or tell people that God wants to save them but he only can if they will believe. God takes care of the "want to." That is never a problem with Him.

    [ January 11, 2003, 04:02 PM: Message edited by: Primitive Baptist ]
     
  12. Yelsew

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    Pastor Larry,
    I know the names that man applies to grace, I want you to prove that each different type of grace exists and that each is a commodity that God dispenses from his resources and transfers to humanity. Show us where one can go to get each different type of grace that God has dispensed. According to you I certainly could benefit from having them.

    That should be a simple task for one as learned as you.

    If you cannot prove it, then at least acknowledge that each type of grace in scripture as described by man is merely human perception of God's one grace, based upon the condition in which man finds himself "receiving" that grace.
     
  13. tyndale1946

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    Which makes you want to because he did! [​IMG] ... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  14. Bible-belted

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    The only thing that would make the general cal "insincere" is if God were to make it with no intention of accepting anyone who actually responded positively to that call.

    But God would accept anyone who responded positively to that call. So the call is not insincere.

    Larry, you are doing an awesome job here, and doing it with grace, and, for a preacher, brevity.
     
  15. Pastor Larry

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    Already done as requested [​IMG]
     
  16. BeeBee

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    Amen. I just recently fully understood the "Doctrines of Grace" of the Bible(As it is REALLY taught), having been as all men are by nature an Arminian. I was one of those people at one time. I usually dont get in on the Cal/Arm debates but I just want to comment that most of the ones debating for the Arminian persuasion are really not understanding. I've seen it explained over and over to the same person, and they still show a complete "ignorance" (In an educated sense not in an offensive sense) to what Reformed theology is all about (As was shown by Dave Hunts book "What Love Is This)in alot of these debates. My prayer is that you will actually listen, and

    I just ask that you "test" what is said (1 John 4:1).

    In Christ,
    Bobby

    [ January 12, 2003, 12:04 AM: Message edited by: BeeBee ]
     
  17. Ray Berrian

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    Usually the person who takes time to exegete Scripture is closer to a true theology. I notice that Calvinists seldom re-explain the verse that are in contention. The usual response is to say that a person does not understand true Calvinism, or they try to discredit the person, or suggest their logic is flawed. Mere denials does not build confidence in the readers, but only shows them that the other person' views have been 'blown off.'

    The concept of a 'general call' and 'the effectual call' as defined in Calvinism is very flawed; there is only one call of the Gospel to human beings as noted in Mark 16:16. In Calvinism does 'every creature' still mean every human being? His Gospel call demands 'belief'in Christ and 'obedience' in baptism.
     
  18. Pastor Larry

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    We have "re-explained" Scripture for you Ray until we are blue in teh face. Time and time again, we show from Scripture how our understanding is the only one that can answer all the texts. Every verse you put forth is answered by several people and it has been that way since you darkened the door of this place over 1000 posts ago.

    We constantly go to Scripture and appeal to you to submit your mind to Scripture. Here you show a great example. You use Mark 16:16 to argue against a general and special call. In case you haven't looked lately, Mark 16 does not talk about a call. It talks about preaching the gospel to every creature. We believe you should do that. That is a Calvinistic proposition.

    If you believe that there is only one call, and if you believe Rom 8:29, then you become a universalist. Rom 8:mad:9 clearly and uneuquivocally states that all whom he calls, he justifies, and all he justifies he glorifies. IF You believe that everyone is called, then you must believe that everyone is justified and then glorified. What do you say to answer that verse of Scripture?
     
  19. Abiyah

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    Thank you. My question has been answered.
     
  20. Yelsew

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    Pastor Larry,
    I take your response to mean you agree that grace by any other name is merely a human perception, and not a reality. Therefore "prevenient grace", "saving grace", "sanctifying grace", "enduring grace", and "common grace" are not biblical graces at all. And that teaching them is tantamount to teaching false doctrine. There is but one grace that truly matters to mankind, and that is God's Grace, an attribute of God that is not dispensable any more than our own puny human grace is dispensable.

    let me add that Jesus, the savior, never taught that grace saves! Jesus taught that salvation comes through sustained belief (faith). That is, for by God's grace we can be saved through our faith in Jesus, the Christ, God. And, that there is no other name under heaven whereby we may be saved.
     

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