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Featured John Bunyan's Methods of a full salvation

Discussion in 'Calvinism & Arminianism Debate' started by rockytopva, Aug 3, 2021.

  1. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    John Bunyan's Methods of a full salvation... In which the witness of the Spirit is picked up at the Porter's House. And how I would teach the doctrine....

    1. Salvation - As the Christian leaves the City of Destruction and makes his way to the Celestial City.
    2. Sanctification - At the interpreter's house
    3. The Witness of the Spirit - At the porter's house

    The City of Destruction The place where evangelists set people on their journey to the Celestial City
    The Slough of Despair This represents the mire that well intentioned religious people bring to the way
    Legalities Mountain The enemy attempt to indoctrinate pilgrims with doctrine designed to inhibit spiritual light
    Plain of Instruction The evangelist sets the pilgrim on the right direction from the “Mr. Worldly Wiseman”
    The Wicket Gate The sinners prayer. Salvation.... The pilgrim now enters into the Lord’s country
    The Interpreters House This is a time of instruction where caring people instruct and disciple. Sanctification.
    Porters House The journey to a higher place where one receives the witness of the spirit.
    Valley of Humiliation Time for some trials and testing!
    Valley of the Shadow of Death Time to overcome the wicked one!
    Vanity Fair Discipled and proven Christians now witness to their present world.
    Doubting Castle Christians choose path that takes them down to the terrible giant despair.
    Lucre Mountain Temptations of material goods
    Demas Silver Mines Represents those trapped by their material possessions and come to a place of all work.
    Delectable Mountains Represents revival and a season of refreshing
    An Entangling Net The flatterers will try to flatter pilgrims unto a place of high minded spiritual bondage
    Enchanted Ground ground to a sound spiritual sleep!
    Beulah Land Experienced Christian faith, hope, and charity that shine brightly night and day!
    Great River The river flows through various places in the Pilgrims Progress and represents death.
    Final Destination After crossing the river, either the Celestial City or the Underworld… Which will it be?


    Christian Arrives at the Cross - And …. To note… That revival service ….He ran thus till he came at a place somewhat ascending, and upon that place stood a Cross, and a little below, in the bottom, a Sepulchre. So I saw in my dream, That just as Christian came up with the Cross, his Burden loosed from off his shoulders, and fell from off his back, and began to tumble, and so continued to do, till it came to the mouth of the Sepulchre, where it fell in, and I saw it no more.

    Then was Christian glad and lightsome, and said with a merry heart, He has given me rest by His sorrow, and life by His death. Then he stood still a while to look and wonder; for it was very surprising to him, that the sight of the Cross should thus ease him of his Burden. He looked therefore, and looked again, even till the springs that were in his head sent the waters down his cheeks. Now, as he stood looking and weeping, behold three Shining Ones came to him and saluted him, with peace be to you; so the first said to him, Your sins are forgiven; the second stripped him of his rags, and clothed him with change of raiment; the third also set a Mark on his forehead, and gave him a Roll, with a Seal upon it, which bid him look on as he ran, and that he should give it in at the Celestial Gate; so they went their way. Then Christian gave three leaps of Joy, and went on singing:
     
  2. AustinC

    AustinC Well-Known Member

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    Do you realize you have these out of order from the book?
     
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  3. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    Especially the arrival at the cross as it deserved more explanation.
     
  4. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    Among Bunyan's many enjoyable works…
    • A Few Sighs from Hell, or the Groans of a Damned Soul, 1658
    • A Discourse Upon the Pharisee and the Publican, 1685
    • A Holy Life
    • Christ a Complete Saviour (The Intercession of Christ And Who Are Privileged in It), 1692
    • Come and Welcome to Jesus Christ, 1678
    • Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, 1666
    • Light for Them that Sit in Darkness
    • Praying with the Spirit and with Understanding too, 1663
    • Of Antichrist and His Ruin, 1692
    • Reprobation Asserted, 1674
    • Saved by Grace, 1675
    • Seasonal Counsel or Suffering Saints in the Furnace – Advice to Persecuted Christians in Their Trials & Tribulations, 1684
    • Solomon's Temple Spiritualized
    • Some Gospel Truths Opened, 1656
    • The Acceptable Sacrifice
    • The Desire of the Righteous Granted
    • The Doctrine of the Law and Grace Unfolded, 1659
    • The Doom and Downfall of the Fruitless Professor (Or The Barren Fig Tree), 1682
    • The End of the World, The Resurrection of the Dead and Eternal Judgment, 1665
    • The Fear of God – What it is, and what is it is not, 1679
    • The Greatness of the Soul and Unspeakableness of its Loss Thereof, 1683
    • The Heavenly Footman, 1698
    • The Holy City or the New Jerusalem, 1665
    • The Holy War – The Losing and Taking Again of the Town of Man-soul (The Holy War Made by Shaddai upon Diabolus, for the Regaining of the World), 1682
    • The Life and Death of Mr Badman, 1680
    • The Pilgrim's Progress, 1678
    • The Strait Gate, Great Difficulty of Going to Heaven, 1676
    • The Saint's Knowledge of Christ's Love, or The Unsearchable Riches of Christ, 1692
    • The Water of Life or The Richness and Glory of the Gospel, 1688
    • The Work of Jesus Christ as an Advocate, 1688
     
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  5. Scott Downey

    Scott Downey Well-Known Member

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    Bunyan and the Extent of the Atonement

    BEN ROGERS
    [​IMG]
    FALL 2010



    In Whosoever Will: A Biblical-Theological Critique of Five-Point Calvinism David Allen, Dean of the School of Theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, argued that John Bunyan did not affirm the doctrine of limited atonement. [1] Dr. Allen is not the only scholar who, in recent years, has called into question Bunyan’s commitment to this doctrine. David Wenkel argued in a recent article that in his early writings Bunyan demonstrated an “Amyraldian penchant for combining real particularism with hypothetical universalism.” [2]

    Was Bunyan a “high Calvinist”? Did he affirm the doctrine of limited atonement? Allen and Wenkel say no, but this article takes the opposite position. John Bunyan did in fact hold to the doctrine of limited atonement. Furthermore, Bunyan’s writings demonstrate no “conversion” to this position late in life: Bunyan was committed to the doctrine of limited atonement throughout his ministerial and publishing career. This study begins with an examination of Bunyan’s mature reflections on the extent of the atonement which demonstrate a clear and definite commitment to the doctrine of limited atonement. It concludes by answering various objections to Bunyan’s lifelong “high Calvinism.”

    Bunyan’s Mature Thought on the Extent of the Atonement
    John Bunyan believed that the Scriptures teach that God’s intention in the atonement was the redemption of the elect and them alone, and that this was fully and effectually accomplished on the cross. This conviction regarding the intention and accomplishment of the atonement is evident throughout his writings, but it becomes most clearly and maturely articulated in his later works, [3] particularly as he reflects upon the active obedience of Christ, the high priesthood of Christ, and covenant theology.

    Justification by faith alone is the heart of the gospel and the Christian life for John Bunyan. He defended it on numerous occasions from Ranter and Quaker errors, and this doctrine finds expression, in some form or fashion, in almost every tract or treatise he published. For Bunyan, Christ’s vicarious obedience not only applied to His death, but His life as well. Christ not only bore the sins of the elect; He fulfilled the whole law in their stead as well. [4] Thus in his later works one can find Bunyan’s commitment to limited atonement clearly articulated in various descriptions of Christ’s vicarious obedience or active obedience on behalf of the elect.

    In The Saints’ Knowledge of Christ’s Love (1692) Bunyan speaks of the active and passive obedience of Christ as belonging to the elect and them alone. For “God’s people,” Bunyan writes, Christ’s “whole life (as well as his death) was a life of merit and purchase, and desert.”[5] In his exposition of the parable of The Pharisee and the Publican (1685), Bunyan states that Christ fulfilled the law for us:

    And hence it is said, that Christ did what he did for us; He became the end of the law for righteousness for us; he suffered for us; he died for us; he laid down his life for us, and he gave himself for us. The righteousness then that Christ did fulfill, when he was in the world, was not for himself simply considered, nor for himself personally considered, for he had no need thereof; but it was for the elect, the members of his body…This righteousness then, even the whole of what Christ did in answer to the law, it was for his, and God hath put it upon them. [6]
     
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  6. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    John Bunyan was an independent. I once read, I believe in Grace Abounding, him saying, “Some call me Ana-Baptist.” As far as Calvinism John Bunyan never mentioned the movement. A big difference is that John Bunyan would never threaten an enemy with his life for negating him.
     
  7. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    just wondering how many have read the book?
     
  8. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Pilgrim's Progress?
    I think I read part of it some 20 years ago, but the Bible has taken over my reading since then.
     
    #8 Dave G, Oct 2, 2021
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  9. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    As any true Christian would understand and believe it.

    To answer the OP,
    Perhaps I misunderstand, but I don't recall reading or hearing anywhere that John Bunyan believed in a "method of full salvation" that one could participate in, and be assured of God saving him or her.
    He was basically what some would call a "High Calvinist", and held that salvation ( and for that matter "the Christian life" ) were both something that happened to someone, not something that a person could make happen to them through a series of steps.

    In other words, he didn't believe in a "method of full salvation" as Methodists do, he believed that it was the gift of God that someone who was given it, then began to experience similar to his fictionalization in "Pilgrim's Progress".

    It begins with the Spirit's call to someone, through the word of God, and it did so in his book at the Porter's House.
     
    #9 Dave G, Oct 2, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2021
  10. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Apologies, but I must offer a correction:
    As I now recall, the Porter's House is not until later.

    Bunyan's allegory of a Christian being made aware of his sin was long before that, when he is troubled in his spirit by his reading of the book in his hand...the Bible.
    It is then that the word of God bears upon him, and it is then that his journey begins.
     
  11. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    Biblically sanctification precedes the Salvation, per 1 Peter 1:2 and 2 Thessalonians 2:13. Noting a lost person can reject his sactification, Hebrews 10:29.
     
  12. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    Isn't that something. A high Calvinist. My My I just can't imagine one so high as those Calvinist right here. They all think of them selves as being higher than anyone else. Even other Calvinist. Truthfully those thinking of them selves being so high reminds me of Satan trying to be higher than God. LOL!
    MB
     
  13. AustinC

    AustinC Well-Known Member

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    It never ceases to amaze me regarding your responses. Do you really think the term "high Calvinist" refers to how a Calvinist thinks of himself? Honestly, is that what you think?
     
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  14. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    I like the old Methodist way sanctification was taught. If the old timers could not sense the sweet spirit of Christ in the experience they would tell you to come back tomorrow night. And smile a little as they said it, especially knowing that there were revivals and good services ahead.

    My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you... - Galatians 4:19

    Once the Christ was formed the soul was considered sanctified. In old times, back when people in these parts were little educated they merely called it “getting religion” and George Clark Rankin tells it best…

    "Grandfather was kind to me and considerate of me, yet he was strict with me. I worked along with him in the field when the weather was agreeable and when it was inclement I helped him in his hatter's shop, for the Civil War was in progress and he had returned at odd times to hatmaking. It was my business in the shop to stretch foxskins and coonskins across a wood-horse and with a knife, made for that purpose, pluck the hair from the fur. I despise the odor of foxskins and coonskins to this good day. He had me to walk two miles every Sunday to Dandridge to Church service and Sunday-school, rain or shine, wet or dry, cold or hot; yet he had fat horses standing in his stable. But he was such a blue-stocking Presbyterian that he never allowed a bridle to go on a horse's head on Sunday. The beasts had to have a day of rest. Old Doctor Minnis was the pastor, and he was the dryest and most interminable preacher I ever heard in my life. He would stand motionless and read his sermons from manuscript for one hour and a half at a time and sometimes longer. Grandfather would sit and never take his eyes off of him, except to glance at me to keep me quiet. It was torture to me." - George Clark Rankin


    George Clark Rankin was then sent to Georgia after his grandfather could no longer care for him. With his belongings in a satchel he had a Colt's navy pistol of a large make. It was an old weapon, and what under the sun I wanted with it is a mystery to me to this good day. I reached the station in time to catch the eleven-o' clock train. I purchased my ticket and boarded the car for the first time in my life. I had one lone lorn fifty-cent piece left in my depleted purse, and that was the sum and substance of my finances for the rest of the trip. As the train whizzed along I looked first at the people and then through the window at the country and thought over my journey and what was to come of it. At nine o'clock we reached Dalton and disembarked. I had never been in a hotel. I saw one not far from the depot and went to it. I asked the clerk what he would charge me for a room that night and he said fifty cents. That was exactly my pile! I called for the accommodation, but before retiring I told him I wanted to leave very early the next morning for Spring Place and that I would pay him then, for no one would be up when I would leave. He smiled and took the silver half dollar. I went to my room, and solitude is no name for the room I occupied that night. After a while I fell into a sound sleep and awoke bright and early the next morning. It was not good daylight. I arose and hastened downstairs, and there sat the same clerk whom I had the night before it had never dawned on me that a hotel clerk sat up all night. I thanked him for his kindness and bade him good-bye in regular old country style.

    It was not long until I was in the road and making tracks across the country to where my uncle lived. It was in 1866 and the marks of Sherman's march to the sea were everywhere visible. The country was very much out of repair and all around Dalton the earth was marked with breastworks. Every hill showed signs of war. Much of the fencing had not been restored and here and there I could see blackened chimneys still standing. After I had gotten out a few miles I stopped and took that old pistol with its belt and scabbard out of my satchel and buckled the war paraphernalia around my person on the outside of my coat. Just why I did this I cannot explain. I must have looked a caution in my homespun suit and rural air trudging along that highway with that old army pistol fastened around me. In going down a hill toward a ravine from which there was another hill in front of me I met two men horseback. They spoke to me and eyed me very curiously, but, strange to say, I could not tell why. Why would not men eye such a looking war arsenal as that? There were two others riding down the hill in front of me, and as the first two passed me they stopped and looked back at the others and shouted: "Lookout, boys, he is loaded!"

    [​IMG]
    In the course of an hour I was at my uncle's. He was surprised to see me, but gave me a cordial welcome. The first thing he did was to disarm me, and that ended my pistol-toting. I have never had one about my person or home to this good day. And I never will understand just why I had that one. A good dinner refreshed me and I soon unfolded my plans and they were satisfactory to my kind-hearted kinsman. He was in the midst of cotton-picking and that afternoon I went to the field and, with a long sack about my waist, had my first experience in the cottonfield. We then would get ready for the revival occurring that night…
     
  15. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    After the team had been fed and we had been to supper we put the mules to the wagon, filled it with chairs and we were off to the meeting. When we reached the locality it was about dark and the people were assembling. Their horses and wagons filled up the cleared spaces and the singing was already in progress. My uncle and his family went well up toward the front, but I dropped into a seat well to the rear. It was an old-fashioned Church, ancient in appearance, oblong in shape and unpretentious. It was situated in a grove about one hundred yards from the road. It was lighted with old tallow-dip candles furnished by the neighbors. It was not a prepossessing-looking place, but it was soon crowded and evidently there was a great deal of interest. A cadaverous-looking man stood up in front with a tuning fork and raised and led the songs. There were a few prayers and the minister came in with his saddlebags and entered the pulpit. He was the Rev. W. H. Heath, the circuit rider. His prayer impressed me with his earnestness and there were many amens to it in the audience. I do not remember his text, but it was a typical revival sermon, full of unction and power.

    At its close he invited penitents to the altar and a great many young people flocked to it and bowed for prayer. Many of them became very much affected and they cried out distressingly for mercy. It had a strange effect on me. It made me nervous and I wanted to retire. Directly my uncle came back to me, put his arm around my shoulder and asked me if I did not want to be religious. I told him that I had always had that desire, that mother had brought me up that way, and really I did not know anything else. Then he wanted to know if I had ever professed religion. I hardly understood what he meant and did not answer him. He changed his question and asked me if I had ever been to the altar for prayer, and I answered him in the negative. Then he earnestly besought me to let him take me up to the altar and join the others in being prayed for. It really embarrassed me and I hardly knew what to say to him. He spoke to me of my mother and said that when she was a little girl she went to the altar and that Christ accepted her and she had been a good Christian all these years. That touched me in a tender spot, for mother always did do what was right; and then I was far away from her and wanted to see her. Oh, if she were there to tell me what to do!

    By and by I yielded to his entreaty and he led forward to the altar. The minister took me by the hand and spoke tenderly to me as I knelt at the altar. I had gone more out of sympathy than conviction, and I did not know what to do after I bowed there. The others were praying aloud and now and then one would rise shoutingly happy and make the old building ring with his glad praise. It was a novel experience to me. I did not know what to pray for, neither did I know what to expect if I did pray. I spent the most of the hour wondering why I was there and what it all meant. No one explained anything to me. Once in awhile some good old brother or sister would pass my way, strike me on the back and tell me to look up and believe and the blessing would come. But that was not encouraging to me. In fact, it sounded like nonsense and the noise was distracting me. Even in my crude way of thinking I had an idea that religion was a sensible thing and that people ought to become religious intelligently and without all that hurrah. I presume that my ideas were the result of the Presbyterian training given to me by old grandfather. By and by my knees grew tired and the skin was nearly rubbed off my elbows. I thought the service never would close, and when it did conclude with the benediction I heaved a sigh of relief. That was my first experience at the mourner's bench.

    As we drove home I did not have much to say, but I listened attentively to the conversation between my uncle and his wife. They were greatly impressed with the meeting, and they spoke first of this one and that one who had "come through" and what a change it would make in the community, as many of them were bad boys. As we were putting up the team my uncle spoke very encouragingly to me; he was delighted with the step I had taken and he pleaded with me not to turn back, but to press on until I found the pearl of great price. He knew my mother would be very happy over the start I had made. Before going to sleep I fell into a train of thought, though I was tired and exhausted. I wondered why I had gone to that altar and what I had gained by it. I felt no special conviction and had received no special impression, but then if my mother had started that way there must be something in it, for she always did what was right. I silently lifted my heart to God in prayer for conviction and guidance. I knew how to pray, for I had come up through prayer, but not the mourner's bench sort. So I determined to continue to attend the meeting and keep on going to the altar until I got religion.

    Early the next morning I was up and in a serious frame of mind. I went with the other hands to the cottonfield and at noon I slipped off in the barn and prayed. But the more I thought of the way those young people were moved in the meeting and with what glad hearts they had shouted their praises to God the more it puzzled and confused me. I could not feel the conviction that they had and my heart did not feel melted and tender. I was callous and unmoved in feeling and my distress on account of sin was nothing like theirs. I did not understand my own state of mind and heart. It troubled me, for by this time I really wanted to have an experience like theirs.

    When evening came I was ready for Church service and was glad to go. It required no urging. Another large crowd was present and the preacher was as earnest as ever. I did not give much heed to the sermon. In fact, I do not recall a word of it. I was anxious for him to conclude and give me a chance to go to the altar. I had gotten it into my head that there was some real virtue in the mourner's bench; and when the time came I was one of the first to prostrate myself before the altar in prayer. Many others did likewise. Two or three good people at intervals knelt by me and spoke encouragingly to me, but they did not help me. Their talks were mere exhortations to earnestness and faith, but there was no explanation of faith, neither was there any light thrown upon my mind and heart. I wrought myself up into tears and cries for help, but the whole situation was dark and I hardly knew why I cried, or what was the trouble with me. Now and then others would arise from the altar in an ecstasy of joy, but there was no joy for me. When the service closed I was discouraged and felt that maybe I was too hardhearted and the good Spirit could do nothing for me.

    After we went home I tossed on the bed before going to sleep and wondered why God did not do for me what he had done for mother and what he was doing in that meeting for those young people at the altar. I could not understand it. But I resolved to keep on trying, and so dropped off to sleep. The next day I had about the same experience and at night saw no change in my condition. And so for several nights I repeated the same distressing experience. The meeting took on such interest that a day service was adopted along with the night exercises, and we attended that also. And one morning while I bowed at the altar in a very disturbed state of mind Brother Tyson, a good local preacher and the father of Rev. J. F. Tyson, now of the Central Conference, sat down by me and, putting his hand on my shoulder, said to me: "Now I want you to sit up awhile and let's talk this matter over quietly. I am sure that you are in earnest, for you have been coming to this altar night after night for several days. I want to ask you a few simple questions." And the following questions were asked and answered:
     
  16. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    My son, do you not love God?"

    "I cannot remember when I did not love him."

    "Do you believe on his Son, Jesus Christ?"

    "I have always believed on Christ. My mother taught me that from my earliest recollection."

    "Do you accept him as your Savior?"

    "I certainly do, and have always done so."

    "Can you think of any sin that is between you and the Savior?"

    "No, sir; for I have never committed any bad sins."

    "Do you love everybody?"

    "Well, I love nearly everybody, but I have no ill-will toward any one. An old man did me a wrong not long ago and I acted ugly toward him, but I do not care to injure him."

    "Can you forgive him?"

    "Yes, if he wanted me to."

    "But, down in your heart, can you wish him well?"

    "Yes, sir; I can do that."

    "Well, now let me say to you that if you love God, if you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior from sin and if you love your fellowmen and intend by God's help to lead a religious life, that's all there is to religion. In fact, that is all I know about it."

    Then he repeated several passages of Scriptures to me proving his assertions. I thought a moment and said to him: "But I do not feel like these young people who have been getting religion night after night. I cannot get happy like them. I do not feel like shouting."

    The good man looked at me and smiled and said: "Ah, that's your trouble. You have been trying to feel like them. Now you are not them; you are yourself. You have your own quiet disposition and you are not turned like them. They are excitable and blustery like they are. They give way to their feelings. That's all right, but feeling is not religion. Religion is faith and life. If you have violent feeling with it, all good and well, but if you have faith and not much feeling, why the feeling will take care of itself. To love God and accept Jesus Christ as your Savior, turning away from all sin, and living a godly life, is the substance of true religion."

    That was new to me, yet it had been my state of mind from childhood. For I remembered that away back in my early life, when the old preacher held services in my grandmother's house one day and opened the door of the Church, I went forward and gave him my hand. He was to receive me into full membership at the end of six months' probation, but he let it pass out of his mind and failed to attend to it.

    As I sat there that morning listening to the earnest exhortation of the good man my tears ceased, my distress left me, light broke in upon my mind, my heart grew joyous, and before I knew just what I was doing I was going all around shaking hands with everybody, and my confusion and darkness disappeared and a great burden rolled off my spirit. I felt exactly like I did when I was a little boy around my mother's knee when she told of Jesus and God and Heaven. It made my heart thrill then, and the same old experience returned to me in that old country Church that beautiful September morning down in old North Georgia.

    I at once gave my name to the preacher for membership in the Church, and the following Sunday morning, along with many others, he received me into full membership in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. It was one of the most delightful days in my recollection. It was the third Sunday in September, 1866, and those Church vows became a living principle in my heart and life. During these forty-five long years, with their alternations of sunshine and shadow, daylight and darkness, success and failure, rejoicing and weeping, fears within and fightings without, I have never ceased to thank God for that autumnal day in the long ago when my name was registered in the Lamb's Book of Life.
     
  17. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member
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    So… Why am I not here recommending the Calvinist an Arminian type church? Probably because the difference between the two are that the Calvinist do not believe in backsliding but the Arminian practice it! It is hard to find folk these days that I would consider sanctified!
     
  18. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    We are either saved or not at all there is no full Salvation.
    MB
     
  19. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    As in sanctified by God in their hearts and minds, or sanctified in their outward conduct?
     
  20. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Odd...the first time that I remember seeing the term,
    I automatically understood it to be describing someone who doesn't think highly of themselves, but someone who thinks ultra-highly of God's sovereignty in salvation and of His every word...

    Much like John Bunyan did.
     
    #20 Dave G, Oct 2, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2021
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