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Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Salamander, May 8, 2006.
The text doesn't say. We know that Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and the baby lept in the womb when Mary visited her (Luke 1:41). Note that the scripture does not say that John was filled with the Holy Spirit. Many people claim that John was saved in the womb and use this passage as evidence. Unfortunately the text does not state that John was filled with the Spirit, only Elizabeth.
Luke 1:41 41 And it came about that when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. (emphasis mine)
The bottom line? The text is silent as to when John came to faith. We only know that he did.
very late in life. Any good Baptist knows that camel skin isn't appropriate for preaching!
Luke 1:15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb.
OK, but when did he get saved?
Doesn't receiving the Word of God take precedence for salvation?
If it doesn't, then Jesus was wrong when He said, "No man cometh unto the Father but by me" (meaning by His Blood atonement and the finished work on Calvary)
If J the B was saved because he was filled with the Spirit, then God would be a respector of persons, wouldn't He?
Thanks for catching that. I focused on Mary's visit with Elizabeth. I stand corrected.
I think the key word in verse 15 is the word 'from.'
From can mean apart from, or outside of.
Ok, but will some one address two things: one, is being filled with the Spirit equated with salvation? two, didn't J the B receive the words of Christ/ the Gospel as prohpesied the Messiah would perform, while in the prison awaiting to be beheaded?
And then how would Acts 2:41 relate?
I guess that's 3 instead of 2 to be addressed.
Well Sal....we've found a way into the sovereignty of God. God chose John. His coming was prophesied in Malachi: Malachi 4:5-6 5 "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. 6 "And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse." John was the last O.T. prophet. As a prophet he had to be filled with the Holy Spirit. So when did John come to faith? I still say the text is silent on the matter.
Sal - remember the story of Balaam the prophet (Nu. 22-24)? In order to prophesy he had to be filled with the Spirit of God. But Balaam was an unrighteous prophet. In short, God can even use the unrighteous for His purpose. John still had to believe by faith in order to pass from death to life.
The greek "eti ek" has been translated "even from" (his mothers womb) in most texts, but that phrase can also mean "yet after" or "here after". I would agree with doulous' first rendering, that his mother was filled with the Holy Spirit, and "yet after" his mother's womb, John was saved and filled with the Holy Spirit, as 1:41 confirms when comparing the two.
In the OT, God gave and took His spirit according to His will, as in this case and the case of Saul. After the death and resurrection of Jesus, the apostles were indwelt by the HS.
Since John lived and died before Jesus' death and resurrection, the fact that he was filled with the HS at birth may or may not mean he was indwelt by the HS continously from that point on.
I agree that we cannot tell from the text.
You go Marcia!
John 1:6 seems to speak to God's sovereignty rather well.
I believe he could have been regenerated at any time God chose, including in the womb. Controversial, but it's what I believe and I'm stickin widit.
The bible does not emphasise the date and time of conversion like we do today. Conversion comes after regeneration, sometimes nearly simultaneously and sometimes years preceding.
I distinctly remember the first time I heard the gospel in a meaningful way and how it changed my outlook on life. Some people can not remember when they first savingly heard the gospel because they were very young when it happened. These poor folks are often accused of not being saved.
And still others that God will save will never even hear the gospel (babies, severely retarded or handicapped).
We have to leave these things in the merciful, sovereign hands of God.
Never was Lost. Predestinated to be a forerunner of Christ but because Adam sinned he had to die the natural death.
So---what you're saying is---Jesus told Nicodemus "Ye must be born again"----but that truth did not apply to John the Baptist?? Is that what you're saying??
And that when Jesus told Nicodemus---"Unless a man be born of water and of the Spirit he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God"---that was for Nicodemus---but not John??
I'm sorry, dear brother! But you are in err concerning the Scripture!
I agree that "conversion" (salvation) occurs after regeneration, but I reject the notion that someone can be regenerate for years. It works in theory but not in practice. As I read the N.T. accounts of conversion, they are nearly instantaneous upon being confronted with the gospel message. Zaccheus (Luke 19:9), the Gergesene demoniac (Mark 5:15-20), the paralytic (Matthew 9:1,2), the two blind men (Matthew 20:33,34), the disciples (John 2:11), the Samaritan woman and many in her village (John 4:39-42), the blind man (John 9:35-38), 3000 Jews (Acts 2:38-41), the Ethiopian (Acts 8:37), Paul (Acts 9:3-19), Cornelius and his household (Acts 10:34-48), the Philippian jailer and his household (Acts 16:29-34)....etc. etc. etc.
My point? As I read the N.T., the exercise of faith does not seem to drag on for an extended length of time once the gospel has been delivered. An argument could be made for Paul and Cornelius. Some believe Paul did not come to faith until Annanias visited him. I don't subscribe to that theory. Even so, the time differential between the Damascus road experience and Annaias' visit was not long. Is it possible that a person could be regenerated for years preceeding salvation? In theory, yes. But the effectual call is so strong ("it is the power of God" RM 1:16), I see regeneration and conversion as nearly simultaneous.
Just my .2 cents (plus interest).
Thank you Doulous for your thoughtful reply.
I think the weight of the argument for regeneration without means is in the constistency of its application to all of the elect - in other words, if regeneration is the ESSENTIAL transaction for acceptance into God's eternal kingdom, and I believe it is, then by what MEANS are the unborn or infants regenerated? Unless you accept the theory that infants die in innocence, in which case you must explain how they are descended from Adam and yet innocent, sin having passed upon all men.
I think this makes the teaching that God does not use means for regeneraion, but does use the means of the Gospel to bring about conversion, very consistant.
Just a fine point, and to God be the glory either way.
I'm not taking the cowardly approach, but I don't know what I believe regarding infants. We know that the Pelagian "clean slate" view of original sin is heresy. Orange made that clear. But if we believe that elect babies are regenerated prior to conversion, we are left to conclude that all of the elect are born regenerate. It's a sticky wicket no matter how you slice it. If I came out and said, "Babies who die go to hell because they have not excercised faith" I would be stoned by both Arminians and Calvinists.
Honestly J.D., I am pleading ignorance on the infant issue. I pray the Lord gives me understanding.