London Baptist Confession 1689

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by agedman, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. agedman

    agedman
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    In a near thread, it was suggested that I post areas of disagreement with the London Baptist Confession of 1689.

    My first inclination is to not do so, because, I consider two outcomes.
    First, that there will be a lot of posts, but little agreement - but that isn't untypical of most of the interaction on the BB, so that reason is forlorn in a lack of support.
    Second, that there will be some misunderstanding that the nuance I take is some manner discrediting the whole document. Not so, but an attempt to display my own thinking. What the respondent take of that thinking is of their own desire.
    Third, that I would have in the next days, very little time to respond to those who would inquire. But, again, as the Lord allows, I figure I will make the attempt.​

    So, it is the emphasis of this thread to begin and mark areas of disagreement with the respondents understanding that what I don't mark as an area of disagreement, then I agree.

    Perhaps the first area concerns the statement on free will.

    "God has indued the will of man, by nature, with liberty and the power to choose and to act upon his choice. This free will is neither forced, nor destined by any necessity of nature to do good or evil."​

    I disagree that there is any "free will" abiding in the unregenerate humankind, and most certainly that the will is not by nature destined to do good or evil. Such free will is highly overrated, and in my opinion non - existent.

    I consider the will of unregenerate humankind corrupted to the point that any "good decisions" are only corrupt decisions that are made to appear good, for the time, but ultimately result in decay and ruin. That the unregenerate humankind will is subject to the god of this world, and of the demands of the impulses of this world and worldly.

    Of course, because I hold such, then any suggestion that the work of God "renews their wills," elsewhere in the document, I must restate as that new will in which God instills in the believer as part of the giving of a new nature.

    It remains my opinion that the new nature contains NOTHING of the old so there is no old will renewed, rather a completely and separate will that takes up residence and battles against all that the old nature and will continues to support.

    We are a "New creature created in Christ" not some old renewed.


    Ok, so that is a start.

    I will either start other threads or continue with other areas of disagreement in this one. It depends on pages. After all, I am old, and not nearly as smart as some others on the board.

    :)
     
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  2. Iconoclast

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    Free will does not exist. It is a false philosophical idea rooted in rebellion against God and His revealed will.
     
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  3. agedman

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    A second area of concern is the broad area of the Sabbath, and in particular these later parts:

    He has particularly appointed one day in seven for a Sabbath to be kept holy for Him. From the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ this was the last day of the week, and from the resurrection of Christ it was changed to the first day of the week and called the Lord's Day. This is to be continued until the end of the world as the Christian Sabbath, the observation of the last day of the week having been abolished.​

    Followed by this:
    The Sabbath is kept holy to the Lord by those who, after the necessary preparation of their hearts and prior arranging of their common affairs, observe all day a holy rest from their own works, words and thoughts about their worldly employment and recreations, and give themselves over to the public and private acts of worship for the whole time, and to carrying out duties of necessity and mercy.​

    Do not mistake that I am for dismantling the view of keeping a holy day of worship. What I disagree is that the day must be what some consider the "Lord's day."

    Many people work at worship on the "Lord's day" and they are exhausted by the end of the day. I consider that placing the stress that the "Sabbath" must be on the "Lord's day," is neglecting the statement of Paul when He spoke of how some regard a day, and others another. (Romans 14:5)

    What is important is not the day, but the type of worship of the day chosen. The LBC places emphasis upon both the day and the worship.

    I place it upon the worship, and regard a specific day as within the freedom of the believer to choose.
     
  4. Rippon

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    It would be commendable for you to quote it honestly.

    God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty and power of acting upon choice, that it is neither forced, nor by any necessity of nature determined to do good or evil.
     
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  5. agedman

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    Rippon, I don't know what you are using, but I copied and pasted from HERE.

    That you would consider me dishonest is using poor judgment.
     
  6. agedman

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    I thought I would squeeze in another area, but it matters very little.

    At the last day, those of the saints who are still alive shall not sleep but shall be changed. And all the dead shall be raised up with their own, same bodies, and none other, although with different qualities, and these bodies shall be united again to their souls for ever. ​

    I consider this a bit of a problem with the statement of John (1 John 3:2):

    Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.​

    Like I said, it remains a small area, but then folks didn't have organ transplant back in the late 1600's and today we do. So, I don't think the eye will spend eternity in hell because it ends up on the body of a reprobate heathen unbeliever. Or my kidney, my heart, my lungs, my ...

    You get the idea. :)
     
  7. Martin Marprelate

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    Agedman is using the version that I use; that issued by Spurgeon in 1855.
    I think you might wish to reconsider your allegation of dishonesty.
     
  8. Martin Marprelate

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    First of all, thank you for introducing this interesting subject. The 1689 Confession is ultimately a man-made document so you are quite at liberty to disagree with it at any point. However, I believe it is the best synthesis [ie. placing together] of Christian doctrine that has yet been made, and that it can be defended from Scripture at any point.

    May I make a suggestion at the outset? Why not place the Lord's day /Sabbath day on a separate thread? Otherwise I think this thread will get overloaded.
    First of all, have you read Paragraphs 2-4 of this Chapter? I think they will go a long way to relieve your concerns. Next, I think the Confession is trying to discriminate between natural inability and moral inability. I have no ability to walk on the ceiling. It is not for any lack of desire on my part- I'd love to do it, but I just don't have the ability. It would therefore be unfair for anyone to blame or punish me for this particular failure. It's who I am; I'm not a spider.

    But you hear drunks, drug addicts, obese people or adulterers say, "I can't change; it's who I am!" This is not a physical inability, but a moral inability. They could if they would, but they won't! And so it is with the unregenerate man. Paragraph 2 states:

    Man, by his fall into a state of sin, has completely lost all ability of will to perform any of the spiritual good which accompanies salvation. As a natural man [the opposite of a spiritual man] he is altogether averse to spiritual good and dead in sin. He is not able by his own strength to convert himself, or to prepare himself for conversion [Titus 3:3-5; John 6:44]

    'And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.' 'But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life' (John 3:19; 5:40).

    Is that any help?
     
  9. Internet Theologian

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    I think the abridged version is where the problem lies. It does not appear to be saying man has free will in the unabridged version after careful consideration of the statement.
     
  10. Martin Marprelate

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    "God has indued the will of man, by nature, with liberty and the power to choose and to act upon his choice. This free will is neither forced, nor destined by any necessity of nature to do good or evil."

    "God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty and power of acting upon choice, that it is neither forced, nor by any necessity of nature determined to do good or evil."


    I'm really not sure what the difference is or what the fuss is about, nor why there are two versions
     
  11. SovereignGrace

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    Man's will is free, but does not possess a free will. What I mean is man's will is free to act within its confines of its nature. It freely moves within those confines. But it is bound by its nature.
     
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  12. agedman

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    Anytime someone uses the term "free" and "will" together, I have difficulty.

    You are correct, that within the confines of the fallen nature the will of man freely makes a choice but such choice is and must be conformed to desires of that fallen nature, and therefore the choice itself leads to nothing of eternal value.

    This is why, I don't see the old will being renewed, but the installation of a new will in which the old resists and desires to overthrow. Hence the continued battles and need to die daily.
     
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  13. Rippon

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    Noted. Spurgeon and company who revised the 1689 should have stuck to the tried and true.

    Westminster Confession of Faith (1646-48)
    "God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty, that it is neither forced, nor, by any absolute necessity of nature, determined to do good, or evil."
    Savoy Declaration (1658)
    "God hath endued the will of man with that natural liberty and power of acting upon choice that is neither forced, nor by any absolute necessity of nature determined to do good or evil."
    Irish Articles (1615)
    "The condition of man after the fall of Adam is such that he can not turn and prepare himself, by his own natural strength and good works, to faith, and calling upon God."
    Belgic Confession (originally 1567 --revised here in 1619)
    Therefore we reject everything taught to the contrary concerning man's free will, since man is nothing but the slave of sin and cannot do a thing unless it is "given him from heaven.'
     
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  14. Deacon

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    Today is the 450th anniversary of the Heidelberg Caticism

    Rob
     
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  15. Jerome

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  16. Rippon

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  17. Deacon

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    I'm so disappointed in the Grammar Cop today - you didn't correct my misspelling of 'catechism'!
    I was working off my Ipad and it's difficult to correct things so I let it slide.

    Two muses:

    1) My new-age atheist co-worker and I will have discussions on free will every once in a while. Oddly as a mathematician / physicists, he takes the position that there is no free will - everything is determined while I'm of the opinion that there are choices we make that can determine our path.

    2) As I teach 1 Samuel 23 this evening, I'm still observing that divine foreknowledge does not necessitate divine predestination... even so God knows the heart of man.

    Rob
     
  18. Rippon

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    I'm slipping. I honestly didn't see it. Besides, we all make typos. But some here are just too careless in their posts. I am trying to restrain myself presently. However, evan, RD and MB are the greatest offenders. They need to be pulled over and given citations. Could you take over while I take a break? ;-)
     
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