No One Can Know if He or She is Elect! Period!

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by preacher4truth, May 25, 2013.

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I am Considered Calvinist/Reformed/DoG and...

  1. I know Jesus saved me and therefore I am elect!

    94.1%
  2. I don't know if Jesus saved me or that I am elect!

    5.9%
  3. Other Answer

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  1. preacher4truth

    preacher4truth
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    Really?

    This is the war cry of some who misunderstand, dislike, or have an incorrect assumption about the doctrine of election.

    Not long ago a preacher told some under him to not even study this doctrine and to stay away from it. He also told others to never study predestination. His reasoning was 'We are not supposed to know these things, they are too high for us (taking a passage as proof-text to support it) so stay away from these things!.

    The above statement was made with quite an indignant spirit. The fellow being addressed looked over at me and put his the palms of his hands up and shrugged and reiterated 'I guess we are not to study or know about this'. This was something he told me he really wanted to understand.

    Several on this board also hold to a similar thinking along these lines. A straw man was given within another thread that the Reformed 'Can never know if they are elect!' One combatant handed out a rebuke similar to this 'What, is your name written in Psalms?' (like some secret code by implication) due to the fact I disagreed with his position. Again the rebuke was that Calvinists cannot know they are elect.

    I will add this as a well known rebuttal (at least it should be in your arsenal) to not studying certain theological issues within Scripture:

    'All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.' 2 Timothy 3:16

    The above passage clearly tells us all Scripture is profitable, and in what usages it is profitable.

    What do you say, can a person know if he or she is elect?

    By the way, I see election and salvation as one in the same and I don't share a fear of this doctrine nor do I differentiate it as some other class of persons Scripturally.

    - Blessings
     
    #1 preacher4truth, May 25, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 25, 2013
  2. Jedi Knight

    Jedi Knight
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    2 Peter 1:10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election.
     
  3. preacher4truth

    preacher4truth
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    That was with the quickness brother! :thumbs:

    I whole-heartedly agree as well!

    So you would agree the statement Calvinists cannot know is a straw man argument?

    - Blessings
     
  4. Winman

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    A Calvinist cannot know for an absolute certainty that he is saved, because he believes he must persevere. Yes, Calvinists will say a true believer will always persevere, but no person can know if they will persevere until their life ends. If a person falls away, in the Calvinist scheme that person was never truly saved. So, no Calvinist can guarantee that any believer, including themselves, shall persevere.

    I do not believe in perseverance, I believe in Preservation of the Saints. I am not saved because I will always be faithful to Jesus, I am saved because Jesus will always be faithful to me. Very different from what Calvinists believe.

    You cannot absolutely say you will persevere to the end, so you cannot possibly know for a certainty you are saved.

    I know for an absolute certainty that Jesus will preserve me.

    2 Tim 2:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.
     
  5. preacher4truth

    preacher4truth
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    Straw man argument.

    Next...
     
  6. Winman

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    Exactly HOW is it a straw-man argument?

    Tell me, do you know for an absolute 100% certainty you will persevere to the end?

    Calvin himself admitted this, he taught what is called Evanescent Grace. He believed that God himself deceives some persons with a faith that seems so real that a person is deceived and actually believes themselves to be elect, but these persons fall away.

    Source- http://www.spurgeon.org/~phil/calvin/bk3ch02.html

    According to Calvin, your faith could be a deception sent by God to deceive you. So, according to Calvin, no man can truly know if he is elect.
     
  7. Mexdeaf

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    All of the elect will persevere. It is grace, not works. People confuse the two.
     
  8. Jedi Knight

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    I like Perseverance of the Spirit. :wavey:
     
  9. Winman

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    No one denies the elect will persevere, but will YOU?
     
  10. DrJamesAch

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    If all of the elect WILL preserve, then why are they asked to MAKE their calling and election SURE? Or does God simply MAKE them CHECK their own salvation? 2 Cor 13:5.

    So since Calvin did not preserve in good works, seeing that he consented to murder (surely that can't be considered the marks of a practicing Christian) does that man that John Calvin was not elect since he didn't preserve!

    Furthermore, your preservation argument forces your system to rely on works. Even if they are GOD ORDAINED works, you change the dynamic from those who are kept by the POWER OF GOD, to those who persevere, and since the evidence of those who persevere is based on those who continue in the faith, the evidence of Calvinist salvation is based on performance and not God which is Arminianism.
     
  11. DrJamesAch

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    If all of the elect WILL preserve, then why are they asked to MAKE their calling and election SURE? Or does God simply MAKE them CHECK their own salvation? 2 Cor 13:5.

    So since Calvin did not preserve in good works, seeing that he consented to murder (surely that can't be considered the marks of a practicing Christian) does that man that John Calvin was not elect since he didn't preserve!

    Furthermore, your preservation argument forces your system to rely on works. Even if they are GOD ORDAINED works, you change the dynamic from those who are kept by the POWER OF GOD, to those who persevere, and since the evidence of those who persevere is based on those who continue in the faith, the evidence of Calvinist salvation is based on performance and not God which is Arminianism.

    God had to drag Lot out of Sodom kicking and screaming.

    "And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds" 2 Peter 2:7-8

    Lot was righteous in his BELIEF but not in his PRACTICE and WORKS. But the salvation of Lot was dependent on GODS PERSEVERANCE, NOT LOT'S and in Calvinism, perseverance is based on the PERSON'S perseverance. That's a works system no matter which way you slice the pizza, diagonal or in little squares.
     
  12. DrJamesAch

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    As I stated before, this is the classic circular reasoning used to prove assurance of salvation. Quoting Peter does not PROVE YOU ARE ELECT, and only proves that a believer is to make their calling and election sure. The verse is a test, not a confirmation. Calvinists are consistently misinterpreting and misapplying this verse and still avoiding the question:

    HOW do you KNOW?

    And therefore, the circular reasoning accusation stands. When asked how a Calvinist KNOWS they point to a command that tells you to check yourself. Well what happens when you check yourself? WHAT ARE YOU CHECKING FOR?, and THAT is the question that no Calvinist gives an honest answer to, and simply uses circular reasoning around a proof text that doesn't even prove their premise.
     
  13. DrJamesAch

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    That is the only honest answer to the question. When a Calvinist is asked how they prove they're elect, they point to a verse that commands them to prove their election. That's not proving your election, that's proving that you are supposed to prove your election. When asked when you check your salvation, what are you checking for? the Calvinist can't answer that because their salvation is based on a determinism that they can't possible verify.

    God asked us to make our calling and election sure by spelling out the CONDITIONS that we can compare our salvation and beliefs to. You can't make your calling and election sure by referring to verses that tell you to make your calling and election sure, because your standard of comparison is election itself. But you CAN make your calling and election sure by comparing your beliefs and experience to the COMMANDS that God has given for salvation and whether you've MET those standards: repent and believe the gospel.

    Calvinism had convoluted that SIMPLE gospel explanation (2 Cor 11:3) by drowning it in a philosophical not Biblical, system of soteriology..
     
  14. preacher4truth

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    Great questions. I notice you intently use the word 'them' in the above statement. Are you one of the 'them' referred to in the passages? If you consider yourself such then they are for you as well.

    Also, there is a sort of slight rebuke in them about not being totally presumptuous as some are concerning salvation. Examination is biblical. Also note it never says make your calling and 'that you chose' sure. No no no, it says your election. And it says we can make it certain, something you've stated no Reformed can know for sure which is outright false showing you don't know what you're talking about.

    You've derided the Reformed brothers over these passages and their usage in the past. Now are you part of the 'them' above? Also answer your other questions above.

    - Blessings
     
    #14 preacher4truth, May 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 26, 2013
  15. preacher4truth

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    Correct.

    Thoes who attack Calvinists as 'not knowing if saved' typically use the Perseverance of the Saints doctrine as the reasoning. In using it they show their ignorance of this doctrine altogether. They assume they know its meaning when in fact they don't.

    Gotta love when people attack something they've made up in their own minds when they're clueless to its real teachings.

    - Blessings
     
  16. preacher4truth

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    Yes, we know. Any solid Biblical verse we use that shows we know we are elect has to be circular reasoning. It has to be, because you cannot allow God's Word to prove you are incorrect no matter what! :laugh:
     
  17. HeirofSalvation

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    As Dr. James clearly predicted:
    His prediction proven correct but a few posts later
    Also....What James says is rather more than that they "can't" know....but rather that they have to appeal to works as the proof, and this is demonstrated on this board over and over again.
     
  18. Winman

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    Note what I have highlighted in red, I believe you meant to say "perseverance".

    But you are correct, when it comes down to it, Calvinism is works salvation plain and simple. They will deny, but they must continually work to assure themselves they are elect. In fact, their evidence that a person is not elect is that they will fall away and cease to continue to work.

    Preservation is altogether different. I am not depending upon my faithfulness to Jesus (thank God), I am depending on Jesus's faithfulness to me. I have come to Jesus in my heart and trusted him to save me, and now I have ceased to work and am solely depending on Jesus to keep his promise and save me.

    Some call this Easy Believism. Yes, it was easy for me, I simply have to believe and trust Jesus to save me. But it was not easy for Jesus, he had to endure 33 years as a man in a sinful world without sinning, and he had to go to the cross and die for me.
     
  19. HeirofSalvation

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    You still.....seriously simply do not appear to know what a "straw-man" is. You misuse that term over and over. It doesn't help your argument to continuously misuse that term.
     
  20. preacher4truth

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    JamesAch,

    You've demonstrated several things in dialogue. First, you are ignorant concerning the truths of the teachings of both Irresistible Grace and now of Perseverance of the Saints. Due to this, you and others who don't know what these things in actuality teach erect straw man fallacies based upon your assumption and then attack them.

    One fact you should know is Calvinists know they are saved. Scripture calls us elect over and over again, and what a glorious truth it is to be called the elect of God!

    You've been given passages time and again showing we can know we are elect. Merely quoting 2 Peter 1:10 sends you off on your oft, over-used and misguided 'circular reasoning' copout.

    I also sense a bit of disdain coming from you and others like you over this passage. I take it is is something you do not practice? Or do you? Do you practice and implement the above passage into your life? Most anti-Calvinist persons such as yourself attack others for using it as you have been doing, so I'll take it that you don't put it into practice at all (unless you show that you do in fact heed and practice it).

    Election and salvation are synonymous, a truth you refuse to acknowledge. It was the elect that Paul sought in his preaching, 2 Timothy 2:8-10.

    The fact remains; You are completely incorrect, the Reformed do know they are saved and that my friend is synonymous with being elect whether you can handle that truth or not, it is nonetheless truth.

    - Blessings
     
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