Led by the Spirit

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by AresMan, Aug 2, 2008.

  1. AresMan

    AresMan
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    We as Christians often talk about doing things for God as being "led by the Spirit." Our sanctification is viewed as God's work in us (Phi. 2:13). If we view our accomplishments for God ultimately as God's effectual work in us through the moving of the Holy Spirit, why is it that some cannot view conversion (a work of the Holy Spirit) as an effectual work of God as well?

    Could we not view (as seems plain in various Scriptures) our entire relationship with God--regeneration, conviction, conversion, justification, sanctification--as ultimately an effectual work of God? Why is it that some are more than willing to "give God the credit" for sanctification, but insist on essentially taking the credit for their own initial conversion? Romans 8:28-34 seems to explain that the whole package--everything that we do for God--is ultimately God's effectual work.
     
  2. canadyjd

    canadyjd
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    I believe scripture clearly teaches salvation is completely a work of God, start to finish.

    I wouldn't go so far as to say those who disagree want to take credit for their own intitial conversion. They are simply trying to understand exactly what has happened as well. I think they have it wrong, and they think I have it wrong.

    We can't both be right, but we could both be wrong and probably are in some areas.

    peace to you:praying:
     
  3. skypair

    skypair
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    You are right at the crux of the matter, Ares. The main reason some will "take credit for their own conversion" is that man is responsible. Do you believe that? If man got himself into his "mess" (sin), then man ultimately is responsible to get himself OUT of his mess. This is NOT saying that he does it without God. In fact, he cannot do it WITHOUT God/Christ.

    What "role" do Christ and the Spirit take then? The Spirit convicts us "of sin, of righteousness and of judgment" (John 16:8). "Convicted" of sin, the Spirit "draws" us to Christ/"righteousness." Are we saved by being "drawn?" Not yet. Heb 9:27 says we must "die once, and then the judgment." "Judgement" -- same as John 16:8! What is our judgment? Our judgment is to believe ON Christ! We die with Him IF we believe on Him. We cannot be "raised with Him," quickened with Him (regenerated), unless we also have died with Him.

    God is definitely responsible for our sanctification. It is only AFTER justification/salvation that the Holy Spirit/God indwells us and takes responsiblity for our sanctification or "growth in grace!"

    Does this make sense to you, Ares? Don't get these concepts "jumbled together." There is a pattern to them and Calvinism hasn't "come up to speed" on them yet.

    skypair
     
  4. AresMan

    AresMan
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    Yes, man is completely responsible for his condition and completely responsible to resolve it. Does that mean that he can, or rather, that he will without an effectual act of God? Just because man is responsible for his condition and its resolution, and just because there are some that are saved, doesn't mean that those who have been saved are credible for the fact that they have been converted. It is all of God from start to finish. Those who have been saved cannot claim credit for any part of their salvation: conviction, regeneration, faith, sanctification, and glorification are all effectual works of the Holy Spirit, and we can only full humbly before God and thank Him for His grace. I see John 6 and Romans 8 as clearly explaining that the whole of salvation from start to finish is an effectual work of God. Man is completely responsible for his fallen state and his willful sin; God is completely credible for the salvation of man and His effectual work of regenerating, granting faith and repentance, sanctifying, and glorifying. Remember, theoretically, there could have been no Cross and no salvation. Man could have been granted no grace and mercy and God would not in any way have been obligated to show grace and mercy. All mankind could have gone to hell, and God would be completely just in doing so. Just because God introduced a Gospel, doesn't mean that somehow, those who are saved somehow can claim any credit for this fact that they are beneficiaries.

    You sure had to use a lot of quotation marks.
    The word draw is an effectual transitive action verb. In John 6:44, draw (ελκυση) literally means "drag," and every occurrence of this word in the NT shows and effectual action. All who are drawn by the Father see, come, believe, and are saved. Comparing verses in John 6 for all who are "raised at the last day" these same are drawn by the Father, given to the Son, and none are lost. The drawing here by the Father is an effectual drawing that accomplishes its purpose and does not fail.
    Yes, the "drawing" itself does not save us, but it ultimately and effectually leads us to saving faith. We cannot claim any credit for the fact that we see the Son, believe the Gospel, and are sanctified. It is ALL a work of God from start to finish.

    Why is it that you can ascribe to God the effectual credit for our sanctification, yet you cannot ascribe to God the effectual credit for our conversion? Is our faith in God in His effectual sanctification any different from our faith in God in justification? Why is it that saving faith at justification is a product of man, yet faith in God in sanctification is a product of God?

    I don't get why some must be "tooth and nail" so adament to ascribing to God due credit for our saving faith. How does Romans 8 and John 6 not clearly show that salvation from start to finish is ultimately an effectual work of God?
     
    #4 AresMan, Aug 2, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2008
  5. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    You seem to be espousing a cause and effect work of God- as in unlimited determinism, and attempting to make that compatible with man’s free will responsibility. I would not consider man’s response to God’s influence anything more than accepting the gift of God’s grace, certainly don’t see it as taking credit for salvation and don’t think you will find many here that would claim such.
     
  6. skypair

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    Ares,

    Do you own a dog? Cause your notion of "all of God" is suspiciously close to a "dog's model of salvation."

    "There I was," said the dog, "mangy, hungry, unloved and then along came my present owner and picked me (for what reason, I know not). I wasn't even 'housebroken!' There obviously was nothing I did or could do to have influenced his choice."

    "I am SO appreciative that he took me home, though! He cleaned me up, taught me new tricks that I never before would have thought to do on my own! There's nothing in me that he didn't put there -- well, except that I occasionally dig holes in the backyard."

    Well, we could go on with this story, but I think you get my drift. We are humans who are expected to choose, act, and take responsibility "without excuse." A dog can't put the facts together and do anything except out of instinct or training. Dog's don't choose their masters, and in that regard, your salvation paradigm is quite similar to the one I offer as a dog's.

    skypair
     

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