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Featured THE FAITH OF GODS ELECT .

Discussion in 'Calvinism & Arminianism Debate' started by Barry Johnson, Nov 25, 2020.

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  1. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    Every time you see the word “elect” or “election” or ”chosen,” here are some hermeneutical guidelines…
    1. Remember the concept of “choice men” in the Old Testament. That is, people who meet a certain criteria, or who are best suited for a known task. In the New Testament, that suiting would have to be regeneration before someone can be considered suitable to be of service.
    2. Remember the connection of election with service starting in the Old Testament and continuing throughout the Bible.
    3. Remember to ask the basic “OBSERVATION” interpretation questions, such as:
    a) Who or what is being chosen/elected?
    b) Who or what is doing the choosing/electing?
    c) For what purpose is the entity being chosen/elected? (Hint: it’s never salvation)
    d) Ask, in what capacity is this entity being chosen to serve?
    e) Ask what function or role the election is for…
    1) For example, Israel is still considered the “election” even though they are being hardened and blinded as a whole.
    But the nation of Israel still plays a vital role in how God relates to the rest of the planet, especially as the end times
    approach.
    2) Paul is a chosen vessel to God, not to be saved, but to bear God’s “name before the Gentiles, Kings, and the
    children of Israel” (Acts 9:15). Paul is an ideal candidate because he is both a Jew and a Roman citizen which gives
    him more freedom of mobility and passage. He also studied at the most renown Jewish teacher of the day, giving
    him credibility among the Jews. His election was for a specific purpose, not salvation, and it was extremely conditional.
     
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  2. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    In the Scriptures we learn that God chose the nation of Israel, in Abraham, to be His earthly election for blessings
    which were material, earthly and temporal. When we come to the church in the New Testament we learn that God
    has chosen us in Christ before the foundation of the world, to be His heavenly election for blessings which are
    spiritual, heavenly and eternal. The election of the church in this dispensation applies exclusively to the saints, and
    to the purposes and blessings which succeed salvation.
    The election of theology, on the other hand, is to do with sinners and their individual selection for salvation or perdition. We are told that elect sinners, totally unable to believe the gospel, will be drawn by irresistible grace, given the faith to believe, and must of necessity persevere in their faith to the end. The death of Christ was
    completely and exclusively for the elect. Those who are not among the elect cannot be saved and will perish
    according to God’s eternal decree.
    Thus election has become a mere selection process for deciding the eternal destiny of every individual. The gospel is
    no longer a message of salvation offered in good faith to all men everywhere, but has become more like a coded
    message for the elect who on hearing it must respond irresistibly. When we bring this theology to bear on John 3:16
    it begins to look like a parody of the gospel: “For God so loved the world of the elect, that he gave his only begotten
    Son exclusively for the elect, that whosoever has been preselected, drawn by irresistible grace and given the faith to
    believe in him, should not perish like those who have been predestined to perdition, but have everlasting life,
    provided they have been given the gift of perseverance.”
     
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  3. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    The misrepresentation of Scriptural election began with Augustine of Hippo. Failing to see that election related to the choice of saints for blessing, he taught that God had unchangeably decreed from
    eternity who would be saved and who would be lost. Augustine misunderstood grace to be an irresistible gift given to some preselected individuals while denied to others. He failed to grasp theuniversality of the reign of grace. It was also noted that Augustine was the champion of sacerdotalism and sacramentalism, and helped mould the Roman Catholic Church into its present form. The Institutes of John Calvin, where it touched on
    predestination and election, was largely based on Augustinian misconceptions. Calvin’s successor, Theodore
    Beza, further shifted the emphasis of Reformed theology from justification by grace, to election by grace. Beza
    and his school developed and defended their theological system by applying the deductive logic of Aristotle as the method for interpreting Scripture and formulating doctrine. A debate ensued within Calvinism. The Bezan approach was challenged by Arminius on the ground of both content and methodology. The Calvinists, by fair means or foul, inflicted a crushing defeat on the Arminians at what should have been an exchange of views at
    the Synod of Dort. The outcome of this debacle was the doctrine of five-point Calvinism as defined in the
    Canons of Dort. This particular theology has permeated much of the thinking of Christian writers up to the present time. Indeed, the influence of Reformed theology has been so pervasive that many good men are totally unaware that some of their assumptions and presuppositions owe more to Augustine and Aristotle than scripture.
     
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  4. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Barry,
    I'd like to make a series of replies to your thread in order to establish some things "for the record".
    These replies are mainly for the reader and not for yourself.

    To me, you've made your views about election, predestination, calling and justification more than clear in many places,
    and I now know better than to try and convince you otherwise.
    Respectfully,

    I wasn't aware that I needed to bring a "hermenuetical manual" along that describes how to read and understand the Scriptures, when I pick the Bible up and read it, Barry.
    I suppose that that is what leads me to ask the question...

    "Are you telling me that because you feel the need to apply "hermeneutics" when you read the Bible, then everyone should have to?"

    Scripture itself tells me to read it and believe it ( Proverbs 3:5-7 among others ).
    Therefore, I don't need a list of "hermenuetics" when I approach His words, and neither do I see any of God's children needing such a man-made "book", for that matter.
    To be clear, I don't see anywhere in the Bible the Lord telling believers that they need to be taught how to "avoid the pitfalls of misunderstanding His words"...

    Rather, I see Him assuring them that they have the Holy Spirit for that ( 1 Corinthians 2:6-16, 1 John 2:20-27 ).
     
    #4 Dave G, Nov 27, 2020
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  5. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    John 3:16 is but one thing that the Lord has to say about why His Son came.

    For those that look closely at just this "verse", we clearly see that this promise of everlasting life is limited...
    To only those who have believed.

    If you think that the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which He gave to Paul ( Galatians 1:11-12 ) and that included everything He had to say about how and why they were saved, can be summarized in one verse, then I think you're not taking into account His every word.

    John 5, John 6, John 8, John 10, Romans 8, Romans 9, Romans 10, Romans 11, Ephesians 1, Ephesians 2, 1 Thessalonians 1, 2 Thessalonians 2 and many other passages give us quite a bit of detail regarding those subjects.
    When did the Gospel become a message of salvation that is offered "in good faith" to men everywhere?
    For example, just looking at the book of Acts, I don't see Peter or Paul preaching what you have described to the masses anywhere.

    What they preached was Christ crucified, and people believing it or not believing it.
    We also see in places like Acts of the apostles 13:48 and Acts of the Apostles 16:14 why they believed it.

    If you don't come to the same conclusion, then I'm sorry...
    I can't do anything other than to point out those Scriptures to you as my source texts for those answers.
    To me, it began a fair bit before that.
    Pelagius, for example, had many predecessors in the centuries before his views were denounced at the Council of Ephesus in 431.

    As I see it, Augustine was also in error... but not about election.
     
    #5 Dave G, Nov 27, 2020
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  6. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    I agree, which is one of the reasons why I don't take my views of anything from Augustine.
    The other reason is that the Lord tells me not to trust men, but Him alone.
    I agree.

    But to me, Augustine's view of election was dead-on...
    while John Calvin tended to carry over Augustine's errors on other subjects, into his own teachings.

    Infant baptism and a-millennialism being a few of them, in my opinion.
    Regardless of anything Beza may have taught ( I don't know, as I've never really studied "the Reformers" past a few things Calvin and Luther wrote ),
    Justification by grace rests completely upon election.
    Otherwise, we elect ourselves to our own justification.

    Salvation goes from being "of the Lord", to being "of the Lord plus man's efforts".

    As for "Reformed Theology", election pre-dated any of that future body of systematic teaching;
    The Lord Jesus gave every word in the book of Romans, for example, to Paul via the Holy Ghost.

    What was written, was written for the believer's learning.
     
    #6 Dave G, Nov 27, 2020
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  7. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    I've never heard that before.
    Do you have a source for that statement?

    The above aside,
    I wasn't aware that I was applying anything but belief of the words on the page, when I see passages like 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14 and think, "God chose me to salvation through sanctification of the spirit and belief of the truth."...
    Or, " God chose me in Christ before the foundation of the world..." when I read Ephesians 1:4.

    Are you telling people who read the Scriptures for themselves ( without any outside influence ), that they are liars when they admit that they have never read John Calvin or Augustine...
    Yet they come to the same or similar beliefs that they did about God choosing people to salvation?

    If so, then to me, you are charging them falsely, Barry.
    Respectfully, I think that you have no idea how or why we have come to our beliefs ( other than traditionally through the teachings of men ), and to me you seem to think that if you ( and the vast majority of those who profess Christ by extension ) can't come to them for yourself , then no one can.

    Quite the contrary...

    I assure you, sir, that there are many people who read God's word and see election as being "unconditional" ( but don't make their presence known on forums like this ), and they don't have to look at "Calvin's Institutes" or rely on "Reformed Theologians" in order to come to a private understanding of it for themselves.

    I'm reminded of William Tyndale, George Meuller, Duncan Dunbar and many others throughout history who never studied anything but the Bible and came to those same beliefs. ;)
     
    #7 Dave G, Nov 27, 2020
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  8. Dave G

    Dave G Well-Known Member

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    Barry,

    Does it bother you in the least that you keep presenting this "anyone who believes in "unconditional election" got-their-understanding-of-it-from-the-Reformers-who-got-it-from-Augustine" point of view...
    Despite many of us telling you, in all honesty, that we actually read the Scriptures for ourselves and see it without any outside help?
    I don't think that it does.:(

    What's more, in debate ( which I have absolutely no use for, as Christians are not to engage in such tactics ) this is what I would loosely term, "ad hominem" and in my opinion constitutes a "guilt-by-association" tactic as well.
    I sincerely hope that instead of continually presenting this sort of thing, that you simply believe us when we tell you that "TULIP" is a brief summary of what we see in the Scriptures with regard to how salvation is accomplished.
    In addition, instead of resorting to threads like this, may I suggest that you simply engage the Scriptures and leave it at that?

    Admittedly,
    I've taken this tack in the past, and God has shown me that it was disingenuous of me to compare "free will theology" to Rome's current teachings in the hopes that it would spur those who support it to take a closer look at what they believe...
    That is why I urge you to leave off this approach and simply present your views and the Scriptures that you believe support them;
    and leave the reader to decide for themselves whose doctrinal views are correct and whose are not.

    Wouldn't you agree?
    I do hope so, sir.

    As for me, I have resolved that what I have described above should be my only method of persuasion...
    To present the Scriptures and let them do the speaking.
    However, I also promise that if anyone asks me why I believe as I do,
    I will not hesitate to tell them why.

    This is my final reply in this thread.



    May God be pleased to bless you with wisdom as you consider the things that I've stated in my posts above.
     
    #8 Dave G, Nov 27, 2020
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  9. AustinC

    AustinC Well-Known Member

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    It is interesting to me that the OP wishes discusses hermeneutics regarding the Bible, but then throws the Bible to the side and speaks of how displeased he is with Calvin and Augustine.

    I ask the OP to share the quotes from Calvin and Augustine that bother him so.
     
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  10. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    Just on a point of fact, Augustine and Calvin do not deserve all the praise for establishing the Biblical Doctrines of Grace. The very earliest reformers, like Luther, Zwingli, Bullinger, Peter Martyr and Martin Bucer were 'Calvinists' while Calvin was still a Roman Catholic. William Tyndale is another example. 'By grace we are plucked out of Adam, the ground of all evil, and graffed into Christ, the root of all goodness. In Christ God loved us, his elect and chosen, before the world began, and reserved us unto the knowledge of his Son and of his holy gospel; and when the gospel is preached to us, openeth our hearts, and giveth us grace to believe, and putteth the Spirit of Christ in us.' William Tyndale, 'A Pathway into the Scriptures, c. 1525. Calvin did not become a Protestant until 1533 or 1534.
    All these people found the Doctrines of Grace where Augustine found them - in the Bible.
     
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  11. Reformed1689

    Reformed1689 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah they are targeted in singling out Calvin and Augustine because they want to point to their faults and engage in ad hominem against them in order to discredit biblical doctrines that they subscribed to.
     
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  12. Scott Downey

    Scott Downey Well-Known Member

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    3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.
     
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  13. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    What's the context please ?
     
  14. Reformed1689

    Reformed1689 Well-Known Member

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    1 Corinthians 12 discussing spiritual gifts. Jesus being your Lord is a gift brought about by the Holy Spirit to change your life unto Salvation. It's nothing you do. Saying we choose God and not the other way around is a works-based salvation.
     
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  15. Scott Downey

    Scott Downey Well-Known Member

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    Paul is prefacing his following remarks about the various gifts of the Spirit by saying no one can say Christ is Lord except by the Holy Spirit. So believers have already been baptized into the body by the Holy Spirit. The spiritual gifts mentioned are add ons distributed to believers by God to edify the church and believer. But the foundation Paul establishes for all believers is of the Holy Spirit, not the additional mentioned gifts.

    That is the context. Being able to say such a thing is a gift. Salvation involves confessing Christ as Lord spoken out from the new heart God gives you. Without that new heart, you wont do that.
    Romans 6:23
    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Ephesians 2:8
    For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,

    Romans 10
    10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
     
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  16. Scott Downey

    Scott Downey Well-Known Member

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    It also means no one should look or feel superior in the body of Christ to anyone else which people always naturally want to compare one with another saying this one is better or worse. It is all the self same Spirit working according to HIS will, that all confess Christ as Lord because of what God did in them.

    1 Corinthians 12:13
    For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.
     
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  17. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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    ...refer to Romans 9:11 for a concise New Testament example of unconditional election:

    11 for the children being not yet born, neither having done anything good or bad, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth,

    God's elect are chosen, unconditionally, before they are born.
     
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  18. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    Not so the election was preferred and here is why.
    Rom 9:13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.
    If you see no difference between the choice of who was to be elect you are indeed blind. Elect people has always been Jews and only Jews related to Jacob.
    MB
     
  19. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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    <sigh> ... you've Jew on the brain. Repeat this ten times and you might get it:

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...

    8 ...it is not the children of the flesh that are children of God...
     
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  20. Barry Johnson

    Barry Johnson Well-Known Member

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    Ok the only part that makes sense is when you say "1 Corinthians 12 discussing spiritual gifts. " After this you come out of the context of the passages ?
     
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