Regeneration preceeding final acceptance

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by whetstone, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. whetstone

    whetstone
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    One of the accusations against Calvinists is that because we say 'regeneration preceeds the final decision for Christ' we are somehow saying people are saved before they know it- or are saved before they're saved. This is simply a misunderstanding of terms.

    To be regenerated is the process of being reborn. It is renewal and change. Regeneration BEGINS before acceptance of Christ, but it doesn't ever end for the believer.

    When a man is being pricked in the heart by the Holy Spirit, he has begun regeneration. His mind is being changed by God and his sinful will being broken.

    The culmination of redemptive regeneration comes in repentance and acceptance of Christ's sacrifice on the cross. The travails of his second birth are complete and he passes from death to life.

    I hope this post has shed a little insight into the Calvinist position. At the very least, please represent it correctly if you cannot agree with it. God bless!

    Daniel Allen
    www.spurgeon.us
     
  2. ScottEmerson

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  3. billwald

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    You have possibly confused regeneration and sanctification.
     
  4. whetstone

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    From that article: "Charles Spurgeon recognized the folly of saying that the sinner must be regenerated before he can believe:"

    The article does the very thing I have tried to debunk in my OP. I am not saying a person is completely REGENERATED before accepting Christ. I said they are BEING regenerated. How long does it take to be born again? A day? An hour? A minute? While there is usually a specific time in a person's life they look back to as the time they 'got saved' God was at work changing their heart. Again:

    A person is not REGENERATED before they accept Christ.

    A person IS BEING regenerated before they accept Christ.

    There is a big difference and the first one is the false accusation against Calvinists (as in that article you posted)
     
  5. whetstone

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    Sanctification is the process whereby a believer becomes closer to God in purity of word and deed. Regeneration is an internal action caused by God to bring about the second birth of a sinner. Sanctification could be considered the continuation of that regeneration after salvation. I am not confusing the two, however.
     
  6. OldRegular

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    I have posted the following on the thread: The Sovereignty of God in Salvation. I thought it might be informative here.

    Regeneration

    The initial event in salvation is regeneration, the theological term synonymous with rebirth or being born again. Regeneration is solely the work of God the Holy Spirit whereby those who are spiritually dead in trespass and sin are made spiritual alive and are brought into union with Jesus Christ. Whereas the unregenerate person has no disposition, interest, or desire for the things of God the regenerate person is a new creation and is now receptive to the ‘effectual call’ of the Holy Spirit.

    Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews, came to Jesus Christ by night to question Him.

    John 3:3, KJV
    3. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

    Various forms of expression are employed in the Scriptures, to denote the change that occurs at the new birth or regeneration:

    1. It is taking away the heart of stone, and giving a heart of flesh, a new heart.

    Ezekiel 36:26, KJV
    26. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

    2. It is putting the law in the heart.

    Hebrews 8:10, KJV
    10. For this [is] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

    3. It is quickening or making alive.

    John 6:63, KJV
    63. It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, [they] are spirit, and [they] are life.

    John 5:21, KJV
    21. For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth [them]; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.

    4. It is a resurrection from the spiritual death.

    John 5:25, KJV
    25. Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

    Dagg notes [Manual of Theology, pages 277ff]: “So great is the change produced, that the subject of it is called a new creature as if proceeding, like Adam, directly from the creating hand of God; and he is said to be renewed, as being restored to the image of God, in which man was originally formed.”

    2 Corinthians 5:17, KJV
    17. Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

    Dagg further notes:

    “The change is moral. The body is unchanged; and the identity of the mind is not destroyed. The individual is conscious of being the same person that he was before; but a new direction is given to the active powers of the mind, and new affections are brought into exercise. The love of God is shed abroad in the heart by the Holy Ghost. No love to God had previously existed there; for the carnal heart is enmity against God. Love is the fulfilling of the law, the principle of all holy obedience; and when love is produced in the heart, the law of God is written there. As a new principle of action, inciting to a new mode of life, it renders the man a new creature. The production of love in the heart by the Holy Spirit, is the regeneration, or the new birth; for he that loveth, is born of God.”

    “The mode in which the Holy Spirit effects this change, is beyond our understanding. All God's ways are unsearchable; and we might as well attempt to explain how he created the world, as how he new-creates the soul. With reference to this subject, the Saviour said, The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.[John 3:8, KJV] We know, from the Holy Scriptures, that God employs his truth in the regeneration of the soul. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.[James 1:18, KJV] Love to God necessarily implies knowledge of God, and this knowledge it is the province of truth to impart. But knowledge is not always connected with love. The devils know, but do not love; and wicked men delight not to retain the knowledge of God, because their knowledge of him is not connected with love. The mere presentation of the truth to the mind, is not all that is needed, in producing love to God in the heart.”


    God through the richness of His grace has granted to His elect spiritual life so that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in [His] kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
     
  7. Wes Outwest

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    Whetstone,
    NO Whetstone, nearly every calvinist I have ever heard declare "regeneration", declares that it must happen before man is able to make a decision for Christ, in otherwords, before man is capable of hearing the word and believing, man must be enabled to hear and to believe, and that is what regeneration does. That is what MOST Calvinists say the meaning of regeneration is.
     
  8. Wes Outwest

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    Sanctification is the process whereby a believer becomes closer to God in purity of word and deed. Regeneration is an internal action caused by God to bring about the second birth of a sinner. Sanctification could be considered the continuation of that regeneration after salvation. I am not confusing the two, however. </font>[/QUOTE]What is it that sanctifies?
    There is a dividing line between those who are saved and those who are not! That dividing line is FAITH, nothing else, just FAITH! That which separates those who have everlasting life and those who don't is FAITH. Thus FAITH sanctifies! Sets apart, separates, etc.
     
  9. 4His_glory

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    Wes says:

    But God says:


    1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

    Hebrews 10:10 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

    2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth,

    1 Peter 1:2 elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.

    (All verses NKJV)

    Seems like Wes is wrong again!
     
  10. Wes Outwest

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    "We were washed", Jesus atonement with his blood washed us clean of the penalty of sin, We were (are) sanctified by our faith, and we are justified by Jesus atonement for sin, so we are sanctified by our faith in the Name of Jesus.

    Jesus atoned for our sin, so that through our faith, even in his name we are saved.

    By all means we are sanctified by the Spirit because the spirit does not indwell the UNBELIEVER, therefore though our faith we are Sanctified in the Name and by the Spirit of God who indwells all of us who have faith in God.

    Yes, Peter agrees that we are sanctified by the Spirit who indwells those who have faith in God we are set from from sin by the Blood of Jesus.

    Your LITERALNESS in "hearing the word" truly confounds you!

    Try again!
     
  11. 4His_glory

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    Wes said:

    I take it as a complement when I am called a literalist in my interpretation of Scripture. Its deffinatly better than being an allegorist or a relativist, so thank you Wes, that was very nice of you!

    God said it and that settles it, wether me or Wes or anybody wants to believe it or not.
     
  12. Wes Outwest

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    But wait just a minute, God did not say every word of the bible, men did! Men whom God ordained to teach HIS principles, and laws to other men.

    You have swallowed that hook line and sinker, that the entire bible is written by God! That simply is not true. It is the writings of man that bears God's blessing, not his signature.
     
  13. 4His_glory

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    2Tm 3:16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, (ESV)

    Wes, I believe that the Bible is God's inspired Word. The Holy Spirit wrote it, men like Peter, Paul and Moses were just the penmen.

    True not every word in Scripture is spoken directly from God's mouth, but ALL of it is God breathed.

    Tell me Wes, how come every time we back into the corner using Scripture that clearly eradicates your arguments, you change the subject? Stay on track for once!
     
  14. Wes Outwest

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    4 His, I too believe that the bible is God's inspired word, but "Inspired" has never been attributed to the actual words written by the authors of scripture, the way that literalists take them. It is instead what the authors wrote about that is inspired, not the actual words they used. But the literalist usually misses the inspired message by taking each word literally.

    You falsely accuse me of evasion. I have indeed dealt squarely with the topics, even to the point of attacking false doctrine head on. You are one who refuses to see the truth that is presented to you, telling me instead that numbered verses, that you've taken out of context, means something that the verse in context does not say.
     
  15. 4His_glory

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    Wes, the word "graphe" means that which is written, ie. the words. Not the message only is inspired but the very words. True not every speech is God's acutal spoken word, however, the passage does say that the very words that were penned were inspired.

    This is the historical orthodox view of inspiration thoughout history.

    That is totally of subject, but wes man, you have some serious theological issues.
     
  16. Wes Outwest

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    So when a couple guys meet on the street and one says to the other, "What's the word dude?". He is actually asking the other guy to give him a single word?

    Or is it the latests message that he's asking for?

    What theological issues do you see me as having?

    Am I in serious trouble with God? Or is it only with men that I am in trouble?

    If God, please set me straight! But if it is only with men, don't waste our time, that only boils down to human opinion anyway.

    Am I in jeopardy related to Salvation?
    Am I in jeopardy related to Faith?
    Am I in jeopardy related to God's grace?

    Help me out here, I need to know what the issues are, and what they affect.
     
  17. 4His_glory

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    Dude we have been trying to help you out for a long time.
     
  18. here now

    here now
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    The Bible is " THE WORD OF GOD".
    The Bible is not "the word of Paul",
    "the word of Moses", "the word of John".

    The writers of the bible were inspired by God.

    The Bible should be viewed as though it were written by God Himself. If it is not, then how are we to believe it. Do we put our faith in Paul or do we put our faith in God.

    It is foolish to say that God did not write every word of the Bible, Even though it was not Him that took the pen and wrote it, He may as well have.


    Mark 13:

    10And the gospel must first be published among all nations.

    11But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.
     
  19. Wes Outwest

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    Here now,
    I do not put my faith in a book of writings, I put my faith in the 'WHO' of the book. I learned of the WHO through the conveyance of thoughts that were written by men. Those men wrote what they believed, in order that we too might believe as they do, that Jesus is the Son of God, the Christ, come in the flesh to dwell among men, to teach an elect group of men, so that they in turn could teach us using their own words to do so. And that same Jesus came to be the Sacrificial Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. We are ALL the beneficiaries of that sacrifice in that God does not "remember our sins against us" because HIS only begotten Son paid the penalty of sin FOR ALL! Not just some nebulous, indefinable, God chosen group, but ALL, as in the sum total of ALL mankind.

    I believe the bible for WHAT IT TELLS me ABOUT God, for God is truly the object of MY FAITH! The bible is not the revered thing, because once this natural life is finished, we leave our bibles behind. The bible only directs us to that divine object of faith who has the power to save us, and we need something by which we come to faith and thereby have everlasting life. ALL mankind can do that, there is no select group that is enabled to do that!

    During Hitler's, reign, the bible was burned over and over again, but God did not die in the fires of Hate that man brought on! Voltaire declared the bible would be extinct 150 years after his death. He Died, but the bible remains and is in more hands than Voltaire could have imagined possible. Boy, was he wrong! But it was not the bible that keeps itself going, it is man's Faith in God that keeps it going.

    The Bible was compiled by man from selected writings of men, for the edification of man. The compilation may very well indeed have been inspired and YES, I believe it IS! But I do not believe it is the sole source of God's word to man, nor do I believe it is in its entirety God breathed. Yes, every thought is Blessed by God! But those thoughts were taught by God to those who wrote them down using the best selection of words they could muster. Even so, the authors by their own admission declare that their own thought are incorporated into their writings. Writings that are blessed by God.

    The Holy Bible is only HOLY in what it teaches the "hearer of the word". Its content, through which the hearts of mankind are won over to Christianity, is based on the who and what of the Christ. Even John the beloved Apostle tells us that not all of what Jesus did and said is contained in his writings. So what is not included? Could there have been a life changing tidbit left out? No, don't think so, because lives are changed every hour by what remains in the book of compiled writings. It is the ideas, the concepts, the parables, the teachings of God the son, the Teachings of the Apostles Elect for that purpose, Yes, the truths that are contained therein that make the bible inspired by God.

    Arguing over individual words has been going on for a couple thousand years, but not a single new revelation has come forth from the word of God because of all the arguing. On this BBS, there is much time and energy spent in argument over the word "ALL", yet no new revelation springs forth! You continue to believe as you do, and I continue to believe as I do. Nothing changes, nothing new is revealed. I type til my fingertips are sore telling you my beliefs, and you type til your fingertips are sore telling me your beliefs, and all we get out of it is callused fingertips, and carpal tunnel syndrome.

    We both believe the other's doctrine is in error, and won't quit until the other is won over to our way of thinking.

    So for you to try to tell me that each word in the bible is God breathed or "inspired" is pure silliness. The writers of the books of the bible were men inspired by God, in particular those Apostles who learned from God the Son. I too would be inspired if I were taught directly by God the son, as would you.

    The bible is the primary source that we've got to learn of God, and to learn how we should live our lives, but it is not all there is that does that. There are other sources of "God's word" that are just as convincing as the written word.

    You say, "it is foolish to say that God did not write every word of the bible, Even though it was not him that took the pen and wrote it, he may as well have." I challenge you to produce even one artifact that would stand up in a court of Law as being the sole intellectual work of Jesus Christ. I dare say you cannot! Well sir, If you cannot produce an artifact from Jesus, who had the ability to write but left no evidence of that ability, how are you going to convince the court that a collection of writings that are signed by the authors is indeed the work of an invisible God! I am convinced that the gathering of the works contained in our modern bible is indeed inspired by God, but not assembled by God. So rant as you will about each word being written by God, and I'll show you the evidence that many of those words have been changed by man! Every new version of the bible contains many examples of those changes. Did God make those changes or did man? .... Prove it! Did God inspire the thought? You bet he did. Is there room for error? Absolutely, otherwise there would be no reason to change the words.

    So Get real! It is the God of the bible that I believe in. It is the God of the bible who saves man, not grace!. It is the God of the bible that is preparing a place for us who believe in him for eternity. The bible is not eternal, but the word of God is!

    Don't call me foolish! It is not I who makes the foolish claims!
     
  20. OldRegular

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    Wes

    Do you believe in the inerrancy of the Bible? Your above post would indicate otherwise.
     

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