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Salvation and Repentance

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by PamelaK, Jan 26, 2006.

  1. StraightAndNarrow

    StraightAndNarrow Active Member

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    Unless you believe that baptism saves (which I don't) I think this verse meets your requirement.

    Act 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
     
  2. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    S&N, I may not have made myself crystal clear, as to what I was seeking. I am looking for a "phrase" of the words, not words scattered through a verse. Ergo, the verse does not meet the 'requirement'. In Acts 2:38, the verb 'repent' has no object, or explanatory clause. The verb 'baptize(d)' and the verb 'receive' both do. There happens to be a good linguistic reason for this. Repent is usually an INtransitive verb, or one that is used reflexively. The best one could derive from this verse would be 'Repent and be baptized- and if these are both done- you can get the remission of sins.' But it does not say,at least here, to "repent of your sins" to receive the remission of sins. Good night cold cruel world! I'm getting sleepy, and I'm a-fixin' to go to bed so I can get enough sleep before church. I find if I get adequate sleep, I am more rested and relaxed when I get to church. Being relaxed helps me fall asleep easier during the serm...!
    Ed
     
  3. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    Ed,

    Any comments re. my position with the guy and regarding repentance concerning salvation? I had a lot to say, as did Craig.

    FA
     
  4. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    Whew!! Me too, Ed. :eek: :rolleyes:
     
  5. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    Faith alone: I did not see your post when I wrote mine. I actually wrote that the night before finishing at 12:03 and when I attempted to post, the BB was already shut down. To save the message I sent it as an e-mail to myself, and then copied it back when I got back to the computer and found BB back up. In general, I don't think you are very far off in your comments as to Steve. I actually once was the front page lead in one of his journals with an e-mail I wrote him. I would say that one has to pick through what he writes, as you said, and I'm not sure I would recommend him to someone I didn't know. He does give new meaning to 'obnoxious' at times, IMO.
    As to the theological comments re repentance and salvation, I think you have headed the train down the right track. At the same time, I suggest that you have unwittingly shown how hard it is for most of us to overcome much of the 'canonized rhetoric' we have partaken of over time. The idea of identifying 'NT' repentance with "repent of sins" or 'turning from your sins' and/or 'sorrow for one's sins' is pervasive, or at least seems to be. It seems to make little difference to most, that the phrases don't occur in Scripture, to my knowledge. (With a possible exception of one or more OT references to 'turning from sins'. I have not checked that out that thoroughly, although I know there is the phrase used "turn from their wicked ways".) Case in point, Craig's comments about the thief on the cross. I would end for now by asking two questions, one specific and one general.

    The first is: "What does the Bible say 'leads one to repentance'?" :confused: Anyone feel free to answer.

    The second is "What does Ed Sutton have to do to be saved?" Again, I await any and all answers.
    It's time for church, so I gotta go. I need my mid-morning slee...! [​IMG] [​IMG]
    In His grace,
    Ed [​IMG]
     
  6. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    J of J: That was then. Now I'm right in the middle, I guess.
    Ed
     
  7. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    Ed,

    I posted more than one, and it doesn't appear that you read them all, or perhaps not very carefully. (If I am wrong, then I apologize, because you seem to have the wrong idea of where I stand here.) You said the following re. my view of "repentance":

    Ed,

    I know how it is to get busy and trying to focus on just one or two in responding. But just FYI none of that above applies to me. I said that the root idea of repentance (METANOIA) is "to change your mind." Most lexions will verify that. But we do need to be careful about the "root fallacy." I categorized each use of METANOIA/METANOEW in the NT to try to get an idea of how they are used. (I did not spend much time on METAMELOMAI, since it in general is better translated "regret.") I specifically rejected the concept of "turning from sin" for METANOIA. I said nothing about "sorrow for sins."

    IMO the key to this is to recognize that METANOIA refers to something taking place in the mind/heart - not to actions which may (or may not) follow that change in heart/thinking. What we are talking about here is not a plea to "turn from sin" as often it is expressed, though that is often the result. But instead the plea is to change your mind about something... often (usually) sin is the object in the NT... but not always. Sometimes it is used to mean precisely "to change the mind." Sometimes (not very often, true) it is used as a synonym for faith. And we should not just assume either of these in general. But what we do need to keep at the front of our mind is that repentance has to do with the MIND. We often focus on the sin. We've got the spotlight on the wrong place when we do that!

    Now, when we change our mind or attitude about sin, or perhaps a particular sinful habit we have, what would be the logical result? Well, we would turn from that sinful habit, wouldn't we? But we have to be sure not to put the cart before the horse. The Spirit moves us regarding some sinful habit in our lives. As a result we are stirred up to do something about it. But it all starts in the mind.

    So repentance is something which can apply to believers as well as unbelievers. Without a repentant attitude an unbeliever will not trust in Christ.

    OK, you asked a good question regarding "leading to repentance." I am assuming you are referring to the 2 Corinthian 7 text:

    What's good here is we see that usually the sort of "grief" or "regret" seen in the world is not a genuine realization that we are sinners in need of being saved. We should also recognize here that in context Paul was speaking to the Corinthian Christians - not regarding unbelievers and their repentance. In Paul's previous letter to them he admonished the Corinthians severly specifically regarding how they were handling the case of a man who was living with his father's wife. The Christians did nothing, and in fact even seemed to make light of it and consider it humorous. But now they had apparently responded to Paul in a manner which reflected genuine sorrow for their actions/attitudes and genuine repentance ("change of mind" regarding their attitude). Genuine repentance regarding sin will produce, according to this text, emotions which reflect our change of heart.

    But this text says nothing about how to gain eternal life. The salvation there probably does not even refer to justification, but sanctification.

    Let me give a couple of other examples:

    Paul used this when evangelizing the Athenians. What's the message? That God hates sin and that there are consequences for sin - that God expects us to live righteous lives, which no one is capable of doing. That should be part of our message. But we must be careful not to imply that people are saved by "repenting," or by turning from their sin. They're not capable of doing that. But they do need to hear that they are sinners. It is a weak gospel that doesn ot point out to the seeker that he has a sin problem. But it is a powerless gospel which gives the seeker the impression that he can be saved by turning from sin. Turning from sin is what a Christian, as a child of God, is now capable of doing, but was not able to do before...

    All of us were sinners, who were saved by grace.

    God wants everyone to come to faith in Christ. Jews/Gentiles. Men/women. Black/white/brown/red... But it does tell us that God "granted" this repentance leading to life. So we can certainly pray as we witness that God will grant such a response to the gospel. The repentance refers to an attitude that recognizes a need, for a new life... to be saved.

    OK, taken in context, this is a great scripture reference. Notice first that a "repentant attitude/mindset" is something which God grants... this is not then referring to turning from sin. Paul is saying that we can't "argue" people into the kingdom.

    Anyway, that's my approach. I never use "repent" when sharing the gospel anyway, because it's a religious term, and gives the wrong idea. What will someone think if I tell them they need to repent? Won't they think that they're saved by turning over a new leaf? If the Apostle John didn't use it in his gospel, which was written specifically to evangelize, then I don't feel the need to do so, though I do see the essentialness of the seeker recognizing his sinful state. It's the Holy Spirit's job to convict them of sin. (John 16:8ff)

    Hope that makes my position clearer. WHat does Eddie Sutton need to do IOT gain eternal life? Believe in (trust in/rely on) the Lord Jesus Christ. Will that happen if Ed does not have a repentant attitude? I don't see how. He must recognize his need.

    Thx,

    FA
     
  8. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    FA, I touched on your post then changed to 'we' a collective. I was not identifying you with the repent from sin/sorrow for sin/turn from sin idea. It may not have seemed that way. Sorry for making that clear as mud. I'll get back, but right now I have to leave.
    In His grace,
    Ed
     
  9. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    FA, II Cor.7 was not the passage I was meaning, but I was thinking of KJV terminology. I am not sure what version you are quoting, but, regardless, had not done that much research, and only had looked in KJV via Strong's Concordance, which only covers KJV, R.V. and ASV. I doubt you could have gotten that deep with metamelomai compared with metanoeO/metanoia, for the former occurs only six times, by my count, in the NT, the latter, many more. I'm not sure that I even agree, without further study and checking, that even a majority of instances of metanoeO adn metamelomai are primarily concerned with 'sin'. I think I might say when one believes in Jesus, he 'repents', in the Biblical sense re salvation. The converse is not necessarily true.
    I am not too sure that too many of us are still concerned with the sin question and arttempting to draw attention to it. I'm not sure that is a good idea or even necessary. Too often, over the years I've heard to the effect of 'You gotta' get 'em lost before you can get 'em saved.' 'And they have to see that they are "Sinners". (Implied, but not said too often, IMO, is 'I want to find out what kind of sinner they are, too, but I'm not going to ask THAT!') That, (the get 'em lost part) to me is approaching heresy. One without Christ is already lost. Nothing I can say or do can make any one any 'loster' than he or she is. God took care of the sin problem, once and for all time, on Mt. Moriah, and does not even place the sins to the account of a lost individual. (II Cor. 5:19) Christ died for our sins; Christ died for sin. Period. End of story. Not one soul 'goes to hell to pay for their sin.' Not one! God was fully satisfied with the payment made there on Mt. Moriah. But before I was in Christ, I was condemned in Adam. I was placed in Christ, i.e. was saved, by grace through faith, and by believing in Jesus, I was uncondemned. I did not have a sin problem, although I was a sinner by birth and by practice; I had a Son problem. That too was solved, once for all time, when I believed in Jesus.
    As an aside, you may have noticed I twice said Mt. Moriah. I said it and that is what I meant. Golgotha is on Mt. Moriah.
    In His grace,
    Ed
     
  10. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    Ed,

    Thx for considering what I posted. I have spent much time researching METANOIA/METANOEW - probably at least 50 hours. I usually use the HCSB. When studying "repentance" or universalism, you should avoid the KJV as it really has some serious translation issues. I put it in italics because it is actually due more to the changing of the meaning of "repentance" in the past 400 years that anything else. If you like the KJV, then I suggest comparing the NKJV in such studies.

    Regarding the large majority of uses of METANOIA/METANOEW referring to sin, that is simply a matter of reading each instance in the NT in context. (If you use the KJV you need to be careful there, for it translates METAMELOMAI as "repent" every time, and that is not a good translation. It is used 6 times in the NT - in 5 verses. To "change your mind" was usually the best translation.

    Now regarding METANOIA/METANOEW, just check them out. Matthew 3 has 3 occurrences, and they are clearly related to sin, IMO. Matthew 4:17 is not clear. Matthew 11 has 2 occurrences, and they are clearly regarding sin. (The reference to Tyre and Sidon, which were destroyed due to serious sin.) Matthew 11 speaks of Ninevah and how they repented of their sinful practices. Mark 1:4 is arguable, and 1:15 is unclear.

    So if you go through them case by case, you'll probably end up where I did - concluding that the majority - probably over 2/3rd - are in some way related to sin.

    I can't argue with your comment in bold above, necessarily. If you are saying that "repentance" is a synonym for believing, then I would acknowledge that in 4 or 5 instances in the NT that is clearly true. But in general, it is not. If someone changes his mind about who Jesus is, or regarding his need to be saved, then that is biblical faith, I agree. But it is difficult to defend that it is often used in that manner in the NT. I have read articles by a few people to the effect that METANOIA/METANOEW usually has to do with sin, as used in the NT. I can't disagree.

    So my view is that to repent of sin does not mean to turn from sin, but to change your mind regarding it in some manner. Unless we understand that we are sinners, saved by grace, we will not trust in Christ. So I see a definite connection between biblical repentance and faith, but I do not equate them. When one reads in Luke and Acts the number of times that salvation is predicated on repentance, then he cannot simply ignore it. When one observes that "repentance" is not used in John's gospel at all, that cannot be ignored either. What I have come up with is my attempt to honestly reconcile that.

    Ed,

    Regarding the expression "getting them lost," I don't think you are understanding accurately how the person uses such a statement. In most cases he is simply saying that unless a person recognizes he is a sinner, in need of a Savior, he will not trust in Christ. So he is saying that we must help the seeker to understand his need to be saved first. In fact, it can be argued that to "trust" in Christ without acknowledging your sin is not biblical faith. IOW, if you do not get someone to understand that he is a sinner, he will not trust in Christ. He would actually be trusting in himself and Christ at the same time. It is the following attitude - one I would refer to as "unrepentant" (in the biblical use of the word). Here it is in the NKJV:

    Now this particular text is actually written to believers, and hence IMO is not specifically speaking about gaining eternal life. But the attitude necessary IOT have a relationship with a holy God is clear. (Yes, that is METANOEW there in vs. 19.) We see a person who thinks that he is in great shape spiritually, and until he "repents" - changes his mind about his sinful state - God can do little in his life to bring him into a close walk with Him. An unbeliever with such an attitude simply will not respond to the gospel... why should he? In his opinion, he doesn't need to be saved - he's doing better than the average guy, he thinks. Hey, his good deeds outweigh his bad deeds.

    I do not know how else to express it except to say that a person who does not acknowledge his sin and need for a Savior simply cannot be saved. To have such an attitude is not biblical faith.

    Without the conviction of the Holy Spirit no one will be saved, because no one will trust in Christ's death in their place for their sins. We must trust in Christ alone... not trust in Christ and turn over a new leaf. A faith that acknowledges that Jesus is God's Son does not save. Biblical faith requires a recognition that we are sinners, in need of the death of God's Son in our place.

    We are saved by simply believing... but the question remains, just how does God go about bringing about faith in seekers? (It's their faith, not God's.)

    FA
     
  11. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    Ed,

    I liked the following,
    But, as I explained above, we do not go to hell due to our sin, I agree. Yet if we do not receive the free gift we stand condemned, since we are striving to get there on our own. That's why it is so crucial that a seeker recognize he is a sinner. And IMO such recognition is biblical repentance - as it relates to the gospel. "Repentance" is also used often in the NT not regarding the gospel.

    FA
     
  12. webdog

    webdog Active Member
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    I believe true repentance can only come about once one is justified. I believe justification is through God's grace and our faith in Him alone. While repentance is the result of justification, it is also an ongoing result of God setting us apart for His will and work, which is sanctification. To repent means to "turn away from", to turn from sin and our old way of life. This can only happen if one is justified, as the natural man does not seek the ways of God. The moment you cry out to God to be your Saviour, you are made a new creation, which also means you THEN "turn from" your old self and your old way of living. This is true repentance.
     
  13. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    Hi webdog,

    I don't agree with your definition of METANOIA/METANOEW. I know some pastors teach that, but that's not what I see in the lexicons as the root idea. Also, if repentance were action (to turn from sin) then I agree with your conclusion, since we are depraved. But IMO the lexicons make it clear that "repentance" is a matter of the mind and attitude. Hence as I see it we can recognize that we are sinners - upon the conviction of the Spirit, through God's Word.

    A repentant attitude will typically result in turning from sin (though not always - how many times have you genuinely determined to do something - say a New Year's resolution - and didn't follow through?) But genuine repentance will result in some sort of change. I think we are agreed there.

    FA
     
  14. webdog

    webdog Active Member
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    metanoeō
    met-an-o-eh'-o
    From G3326 and G3539; to think differently or afterwards , that is, reconsider (morally to feel compunction): - repent.

    My point was that turning from sin (what I get from the OP) is suggested as a prerequisite to salvation. This I do not agree. The Holy Spirit draws us, changes our heart, and shows us the need for a Saviour. If this is what you mean by "repent", as in attitude and heart change, I agree to a point. Man cannot deliberately change his own heart and attitude by his own doing...this is an action from the Holy Spirit. Repentance is man's action toward God. True repentance, either confessing sin or turning from the old life, comes after justification.
     
  15. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    FA, are you sure your next to last post said exactly what you intended?
    You wrote:
    "If you use the KJV you need to be careful there, for it translates METAMELOMAI as "repent" every time, and that is not a good translation. It is used 6 times in the NT - in 5 verses. To "change your mind" was usually the best translation."

    You had previously written:
    "(I did not spend much time on METAMELOMAI, since it in general is better translated "regret.") "
    I believe this, i.e. the previously written referring to metamelomai is better.

    I think the 'root fallacy' you referred to may be less than fully persuasive, at least to me. I would fully agree if one is referring to the etymology of the genealogy of the words, perhaps as opposed to the words and/or idioms themselves.
    I will use the two words here as a minute example.

    MetanoeO- to think after-
    Metamelomai- to care after-

    That would seem to make the two words more or less equal to, in our sense, of 'to consider' vs 'to 'tend''. Obviously, that is not the Biblical distinction. I do think we need to realize that most of the NT usage is metanoeO/metanoia, as you do. Unfortunately, most seem to not, but have an unintended (I'm being charitable, here I hope.) affinity to the regret idea either explicitly or implicitly connected. My own pastor once asked me, "What else could repent possibly be talking about other than sin?" I suggest he is all too typical.

    I notice you have asked three times to the effect of this: (which is a direct quote) "How can we come to Him if we do not recognize that we are sinners in need of a Savior?"
    While I think I understand where you are coming from here, I suggest that this is not a question asked in the Bible, as far as I know.
    Abraham... "believed in the LORD, and he counted it unto him for righteousness. (Gen 15:6) Seems to me that what Ol' Abe heard was that he was gonna get a big family. Nicodemus heard John 3:16; as far as I know the question of 'being a sinner' had not come up. The murmuring Jews in the synagogue at Capernaum were arguing with Jesus over 'bread' and 'manna' when Jesus said, "Truly,...he that believes on me has everlasting life." (Jo. 6:47). Martha and Mary were distraught over the death of Lazarus; Jesus proclaimed he was over death, and asked, "Do you believe this?" (Jo. 11:26) Those who saw what Jesus did are merely said 'that they "believed on Him".' (John 11:45). The same said of those at Iconium. (Acts 14:1) and like to the 'keeper of the prison in Acts 16:23-36. So as I said, I can see what you are saying, but I think this, though important, too often is given the priority and sidetracks the real question. "Do you believe this?" as Jesus asked Martha. I suspect it does. Yes, sometimes sin is in view in a Biblical context and proclamation. Sometimes it is not mentioned, IMO.

    Now, just for fun.
    Which of the following statements is true- any or all- borrowing a few from a couple of close friends' questionaire one sent me that they had put together for potential staff members for Child Evnagelism Fellowsip in one city, where one was the Director.
    1.) He that believes in Jesus and is baptized shall be saved.
    2.) He that believes in Jesus and is not baptized shall be saved.
    3.) He that believes in Jesus and eats tuna fish shall be saved.
    4.) He that believes in Jesus shall be saved.
    5.) He that has turned from his sins shall be saved.
    6.) All you have to do is believe in God to be saved.

    Fair 'questions'? I think so. How would you or anyone else answer them. Just for a diversion, of course. Well, I have to run, for now. And I have no idea how I get so sidetracked. Obviously, I do not have a one-track mind.
    In His grace,
    Ed
     
  16. EdSutton

    EdSutton New Member

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    Y'all help me out. What exactly is an OP?
    Ed
     
  17. Craigbythesea

    Craigbythesea Active Member

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    The Opening Post in a thread.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Craigbythesea

    Craigbythesea Active Member

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    The requirement for salvation is not set by some Baptist posting on some message board or by anyone else. The requirement for salvation is set by God Himself, and there are many passages in the Bible that speak of some of the requirements, and they must all be taken together, for when taken together they form a list of requirements. Jesus, however, summed up the requirements quite nicely as given to us in the third chapter of John’s gospel,

    John 3:3. Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."
    4. Nicodemus *said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born, can he?"
    5. Jesus answered, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

    Most obviously Jesus was not talking about a mere change of the mind, but a total death of one’s being allowing for the birth of the new man. Not only is an effectual change of mind required, but the man himself must die and be born anew.

    John 12:24. "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
    25. "He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal.
    26. "If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him.

    Rom. 6:1. What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
    2. May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
    3. Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?
    4. Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
    5. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,
    6. knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
    7. for he who has died is freed from sin.
    8. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,
    9. knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him.

    Col. 2:8. See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.
    9. For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form,
    10. and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority;
    11. and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ;
    12. having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.
    13. When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions,
    14. having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.

    2 Cor. 5:17. Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.

    Therefore, not only is repentance from sin and abandonment of sin required for salvation, a man MUST be born again.

    Matt. 7:13. "Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.
    14. "For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

    Gen. 3:4. The serpent said to the woman, "You surely will not die!

    (All Scriptures, NASB, 1995)

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Faith alone

    Faith alone New Member

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    webdog - do you see that Strongs has the same idea - that of a change of mind? The focus of that definition is in the attitude and mind, not in the actions, which is the result.

    Man can respond to the work of the Holy Sirit in his life - drawing him. You're taking a Refomed position of the necessity of being regenerated first IOT repent or believe. I call it devine enabling - regeneration occurs as a result of faith, as I see it in scripture. That's why God can exhort us to believe - to respond.

    We're getting closer. I see the Spirit drawing us and showing us, convicting us of the need for a Savior - but not changing our heart - exactly. I see us as having the capability to seek the truth, as as we do the result will be a changed heart which is seeking truth even more. IOW, I see man involved in it as well as God.

    But if you're Reformed, then we probably won't get much closer than that.

    Thx,

    FA
     
  20. Craigbythesea

    Craigbythesea Active Member

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    Non-effectual repentance will no more get a man into heaven than a non-effectual call by God. The teaching that it is possible for a man to get into heaven without effectual repentance brings disgrace to the very nature and character of our most holy God.

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