The Biblical Means for Salvation

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Skandelon, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. Skandelon

    Skandelon
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    The Gospel is LIFE: Jesus calls his words "spirit and life" yet Calvinists maintain that men cannot accept them unless they have first been made alive (regenerated).

    The Gospel is TRUTH: Scripture also teaches that "the truth will set you free," but Calvinists maintain that men cannot accept the truth unless they first have been made free (regenerated).

    The Gospel is AN APPEAL FOR RECONCILIATION: Scripture teaches that the gospel is a message of reconciliation for the world, but Calvinists teach that men cannot be reconciled because they are enemies of God and thus must first be reconciled (regenerated) in order to accept the appeal to be reconciled.

    The Gospel is the POWER: Paul teaches that the gospel is the "power of God unto salvation" yet Calvinists insist that the power is in the secret "effectual call" (regeneration).

    It seems to me that Calvinists have negated the power and the purpose of the means God has clearly chosen to bring life, freedom and reconciliation. How? By insisting that the WORD is not powerful in and of itself, but that it needs another means to accompany it...the inward "effectual calling." A concept never clearly expounded upon in scripture, even if all Calvinistic proof texts on the subject were taken into account.

    One must first establish that the work of the Holy Spirit in producing and carrying the Gospel to the lost is somehow insufficient to allow men to respond to its appeal before they can insist on the NEED for an additional working of the Holy Spirit. Can anyone establish that the Holy Spirit's work in bringing the gospel isn't sufficient to provide men all they need to respond to the appeal to be reconciled?
     
  2. Iconoclast

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    You ask this:
    Yes, the calvinist we call the apostle Paul clearly shows that the T in calvinism means that all natural men cannot receive or welcome the things of God.
    [QUOTE 9But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

    10But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

    11For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

    12Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

    13Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

    14But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    ][/QUOTE]
    here very clearly God must regenerate a natural man and convert him into a Spiritual man before he will welcome the things of God....neither can he know them.
     
  3. Tom Butler

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    I could kick myself for getting sucked into this discussion, particularly when Iconoclast and others can handle the Calvinist side quite well.

    No Calvinist denies that the word of God is spirit and life. See Iconoclast's post above for the excellent response to the second part of the statement.

    No Calvinist denies that the truth sets men free. See Iconoclast's post above.

    No Calvinist denies that the gospel is an appeal for sinners to be reconciled to God. Reconciled and regenerated are not the same thing. Straw man alert! See Iconoclast's post #2

    No Calvinist denies that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation. God employs means (the gospel) to call the lost to repentance and faith. There is an effectual call, but to call it a secret is to mis-label it. Nor are the effectual call and regeneration the same thing.

    Paul (in Romans 8) clearly describes believers as "the called."

    The Calvinist does not negate the power of the means God has chosen to use in salvation. No one is saved independently of the gospel. No one is saved unless he is drawn. No one is saved without being brought under conviction. No one is saved without being called. The scriptures teach that repentance and faith are both gifts from God. God has ordained the means as well as the end.

    Why would a Calvinist want to claim that the work of the Holy Spirit is insufficient? Either I don't understand your point, or this is another straw man.

    I'm outa here. Iconoclast can take it from here. Just call me a drive-by poster.
     
  4. Ron Wood

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    For someone who claims to have been a Calvinist you sure do show how ignorant you are of Calvinism. It is either ignorance or just plain dishonesty. I will give you the benefit of the doubt and call it ignorance. I am reminded of a saying by Mark Twain I believe ( I am going to change it a little in order for it to apply) which says it is better to be quiet and let people think you are ignorant than to open your mouth and prove it. :smilewinkgrin:
     
  5. Osage Bluestem

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    How do you know what the bible teaches? You don't believe the bible is inerrant according to your posts in the other thread. You have no credibility to speak on what the bible says or doesn't say. Your view doesn't support an objetive truth to pull doctrine from. So for all we know you have developed your doctrine by leaving out the parts of scripture you believe are "in error".
     
  6. Skandelon

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    As I've quoted before, Calvinists are seriously divided among themselves and always have been. There is Supralapsarianism vs. Sublapsarianism vs. Infralapsarianism. 'The Supralapsarians hold that God decreed the fall of Adam; the Sublapsarians, that he permitted it' (McClintock & Strong). The Calvinists at the Synod of Dort were divided on many issues, including lapsarianism. The Swiss Calvinists who wrote the Helvetic Consensus Formula in 1675 were in conflict with the French Calvinists of the School of Saumur. There are Strict Calvinists and Moderate Calvinists, Hyper and non-Hyper (differing especially on reprobation and the extent of the atonement and whether God loves all men), 5 pointers, 4 pointers, 3 pointers, 2 pointers. In America Calvinists were divided into Old School and the New School. As we have seen, the Calvinists of England were divided in the 19th century.

    Whenever, therefore, one tries to state TULIP theology and then refute it, there are Calvinists who will argue with you that you are misrepresenting Calvinism. It is not so much that you are misrepresenting Calvinism, though. You might be quoting directly from various Calvinists or even from Calvin himself. The problem is that you are misrepresenting THEIR Calvinism! There are Calvin Calvinists and Thomas Fuller Calvinists and Arthur W. Pink Calvinists and Presbyterian Calvinists and Baptist Calvinists and many other sorts of Calvinists. Many Calvinists have never read Calvin’s Institutes of Christian Religion for themselves. They are merely following someone who follows someone who allegedly follows Calvin (who, by his own admission, followed Augustine).


    Calvinists believe that they have the right to reject or modify some parts of or conclusions of Calvin. I agree with them 100%, and I say, further, that we also have the right to reject the entire thing if we are convinced that it is not supported by Scripture!
     
  7. Skandelon

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    Keep this discussion in that thread please. There are many Calvinists who agree with me on the points I've made in that thread and they have nothing to do with this post. I affirm the reliability of Scripture but refuse to use manmade and controversial terms to describe it. There is no reason to ascribe to scripture what scripture doesn't ascribe to itself.
     
  8. Skandelon

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    I know they would never claim to deny this but that is what I'm accusing their dogma of ultimately concluding by teaching that the words themselves have no power or ability to accomplish anything apart from the work of effectual regeneration. One must be "Born Again," "Made Alive," or "Regenerated" in order to even understand and believe the words of the gospel. That is what I referring to...

    That would mean that a person (theoretically) could be regenerate (made new) and not yet be reconciled to God. But even if you claim it all happens "simultaneously" it doesn't negate the concept that the appeal of the gospel is powerless to bring reconciliation, but that only the work of regeneration can do that.

    Many Calvinists do equate the effectual call and regeneration, but as my post to Ron shows there are many different camps and nuances of this complex system. And how do you know I've mislabeled the irresistible "call?" It's never named in scripture so its all manmade labels anyway, so the label "secret" would be as good as any. Its kept pretty "secret" after all.

    And we call those entering the army "recruits," but does that mean they were the only ones the Army attempted to recruit? Of course not.

    Ok, Ok. You make the means irresistibly powerful ONLY to those who have first been irresistibly regenerated. Is that better? It doesn't change the argument being made. Those means alone are powerless in Calvinism, period.

    And the gospel is the means by which men are drawn.

    Because the gospel is a work of the Holy Spirit which (in Calvinism) is insufficient to bring anyone to repentance who has not first be regenerated, thus a work of the Holy Spirit (the gospel) is insufficient to accomplish the purpose of bringing reconciliation to the enemies of God, the very purpose for which is was sent.

    Is there proof of its insufficiency to necessitate the need for this extra effectual working?
     
  9. Skandelon

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    And what are the means the Spirit uses to reveal truth? THE GOSPEL


    Keep quoting because in the next few verses Paul goes on to call the "brethren" in Corinth "natural" or "carnal" minded and equally unable to receive these same "deep things of God." Maybe Paul isn't speaking of the truth of the gospel which has ALREADY been made known, otherwise how would they be known as "brethren?"

    No, it just means that mysteries, such as God's eternal desire and plan to grant repentance to the Gentiles (not just the Jews), must be made known through the means such as THE GOSPEL being preached by divinely appointed APOSTLES.
     
  10. Iconoclast

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    You keep asking the same question despite 1cor 2:14 providing the answer to you. You do not seem to be able to see it.
    Here once again Paul instructs us why this is so. Man cannot submit to God's word unless the Spirit enables him to do so. It could not be written any clearer. Do you expect to find a verse that says...Skandelon-calvinism is true,Robert Snow quit resisting the truths known as calvinism,Webdog Romans 5 answers that which you puzzle over???

    skandelon...lets see if we can try this another way.
    No one says the gospel is insufficent, It is efficent for those it is sent to Isa55 ....Gods word always accomplishes it's God intended purpose.
    lets see if we can demonstrate this from the OT.
    Here the calvinist Moses records for us that the same pillar of cloud gave light to the people of God, but was darkness to the ungodly. Do you see this skandelon? it had nothing to do with the sufficency, or insufficency of the pillar of cloud.
    This is the same answer you seek for your question about the gospel.
    To those drawn by the Spirit it is good news. To those who resist...they despise it,and it will be bad news for them at the white throne judgement.

    Can you see this? Do you see moses was also a calvinist,by definition?[yes ,even before calvin was born] Maybe even the calvinists best friend ,Robert Snow can see this one.....or is it still a pillar of darkness to you?
     
  11. Skandelon

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    And you must not have seen my response to that verse when I wrote: Keep quoting because in the next few verses Paul goes on to call the "brethren" in Corinth "natural" or "carnal" minded and equally unable to receive these same "deep things of God." Maybe Paul isn't speaking of the truth of the gospel which has ALREADY been made known, otherwise how would they be known as "brethren?"



    Actually, its God's LAW, not his word. And you ASSUME that the means of the Holy Spirit in bringing the Gospel is insufficient to enable him to have faith in the One who fulfilled the Law for mankind...which is the point of the OP.


    Yes, I see it, but from a much different perspective. You think they can't see because didn't effectually make them able to see. I think God gave them all they needed to see but they resist and become hardened and blind in their rebellion, something scripture CLEARLY describes over and over.

    And if Moses was a Calvinist explain this discourse with God:

    "9 "I have seen these people," the LORD said to Moses, "and they are a stiff-necked people. 10 Now leave me alone so that my anger may burn against them and that I may destroy them. Then I will make you into a great nation." 11 But Moses sought the favor of the LORD his God. "O LORD," he said, "why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand? 12 Why should the Egyptians say, 'It was with evil intent that he brought them out, to kill them in the mountains and to wipe them off the face of the earth'? Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do not bring disaster on your people. 13 Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, to whom you swore by your own self: 'I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and I will give your descendants all this land I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.' " 14 Then the LORD relented and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened."
     
  12. Osage Bluestem

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    Scripture does ascribe that to itself when it says it is inspired and records the view of Jesus himself regarding scripture.

    So, until you repent of your errant views of scripture I see no reason to believe anything you say.
     
  13. Skandelon

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    I doubt you'll believe anything I or anyone who doesn't drink your favor of kool-aid will say anyway, so that is fine. Have a good day. :wavey:
     
  14. Osage Bluestem

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    With all do respect, it isn't a "flavor of kool aid" it is believing the bible is the true written word of God. If someone doesn't believe that then no I do not trust their view at all and disregard everything they say because that is a non negotiable fundamental that I believe is necessary for sound doctrine.
     
  15. Skandelon

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    Again you beg the question by equating "true" with "inerrant" (without any error) and on the other thread you acknowledge there are insignificant errors. So, which is it?

    Inerrant (without any error) or insigificerrant (without any significant error)? If your going to use a man-made term anyway, might as well use one that better represents your view. :)
     
  16. webdog

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    Typical ad hominem troll behavior which shows that you either cannot deal with the OP, or it is easier to divert attention to the person and not the topic.
     
  17. webdog

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    Oh, he saw it...and nailed the context involving it. You are the one that ripped it out of context.
     
  18. glfredrick

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    I'll no longer give Skandelon the benefit of the doubt. He has proven himself un-trustworthy in these debates.
     
  19. Skandelon

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    I'm sorry I hurt you fredrick. I thought secretly quoting Calvin and letting you all debate his words was a good way to reveal the lack of objectivity in dealing with each other and a bit humorous, not deceptive, but I can see how one might take it that way. I apologize if it was over the line.
     
  20. webdog

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    There's a Christ-like behavior model to follow :rolleyes:

    I don't recall doing the same to you when you told me how busy your schedule was and you would not have the time to engage me on a topic...and then turned right around and posted a VERY wordy 10 paragraph post coupled with dozens of other posts shortly thereafter. Not sure how that exactly garners trust. I guess you hold to "do as I say, not as I do".
     
    #20 webdog, Mar 15, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2011

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