Understanding

It is only through the ministry of Jesus Christ in our hearts and our minds that we can know the truth about God His Father and come to know God as our Lord and Savior.  Jesus Christ came to reveal the Father to us and to give us an understanding of the truth about God and ourselves.  This revelation that Christ has given us in recorded for us in the pages of the Scriptures, the Holy Bible, which is the inerrant, infallible, inspired, preserved Word of God.

18 No one has seen God at any time.  The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.  John 1:18

37 “If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; 38 but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that that Father is in Me, and I in Him.  John 10-37-38

49 “For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak.  50 And I know that His commandment is everlasting life.  Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak.  John 12:49-50

8 Philip said to Him, “Lord show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.”  9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip?  He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?  10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me?  The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.  11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.  John 14:8-11

These verses verify that Christ Jesus declared the Father to the world through His Words and His Works, and these have been preserved for us in the Holy Scriptures in the New Testament.  Led by the Holy Spirit, John demonstrates through these verses that the Son has revealed the Father and has given us an understanding.   John, used by God, continues this explanation in his first epistle.

19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.  20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ.  This is the true God and eternal life.  21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols.  Amen.  1 John 5:19-21

The contrast is clear, those who belong to God through faith in His Son Jesus Christ are in Him and have eternal life, all others are of the world and are deceived by Satan.  John’s closing remark signifies that believers can follow idols through believing false doctrine about Christ Jesus and God the Father and then, because of this, live godless lives.  All of 1 John is God’s prescription to combat the infection of false teaching that had infiltrated the church from false disciples.  Under the control of the Holy Spirit, John starts with the basics that we must believe in order to know God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ.

1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life—2 the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us—3 that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.  4 And these things we write that your joy may be full.  1 John 1:1-4

God declares through John, that His apostles are the eyewitnesses to His Son Jesus Christ and are therefore, the only ones who are called by Him to give that testimony, preserved for us in the Holy Bible, which results in sinners knowing God the Father and Jesus Christ His Son.  We must be led of the Holy Spirit to the testimony about Jesus Christ that corresponds to the truth recorded for us in the pages of Holy Writ.  It is this testimony about the Son that saves sinners who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and gives us the joyful assurance of forgiveness of sins and eternal life with God Almighty.  We can trust this eyewitness account and the message that comes from this historical event, for it is this message alone that believed upon results in the joy of fellowship with the Father, His Son, and other genuine believers.

5 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.  6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.  7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.  8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.  1 John 1:5-10

The Holy Spirit gets right to the heart of the issue of what separates us from God; it is the fact that all have sinned and walk in darkness.  Since God is light, and there is no darkness at all in Him, for us to have fellowship with Him, to experience Him in our lives, we must walk in the light.  How does that come about?  It happens when we confess that we are sinners, repent of our sins (to abhor sin and stop doing it!) , and put our faith in His Son Jesus Christ who is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the whole world.  To deny the reality of sin is to deny the truth and to disregard the Word of God.  How many who claim to follow Jesus are still walking in darkness?  By the antics of the visible church it would appear that the vast majority are still in their sins, refusing to acknowledge with God that they are sinners, to confess that they have sinned, and turning to the truth of the Scriptures, the testimony that He has given us about His Son.  If we walk in the light of the truth of the Word of God we have fellowship with God and other believers, because the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin.  We have to know the truth to be saved by the truth and the only source of the truth is the Word of God.  The truth about Jesus Christ and His saving work for us, His horrible death upon the cross as He suffered for the sins of the whole world, and His resurrection from the dead, hallelujah!, is found only in the Bible, and to go to any other source will only lead to blindness and death.  Those who are genuinely saved will love the Scriptures and continually resort to them to build themselves up on their most holy faith and strengthen their amazing relationship with the Living God.

Now does this mean that those who have repented of their sins and trusted Christ as their Lord and Savior will never sin again?  The Word of God says no, even though we are cautioned NOT TO SIN!  Jesus Christ is always there for us; His intercessory work at the right hand of the Majesty on High is crucial for our right standing before our Holy and Awesome God Who is a consuming Fire!

1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin.  And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.  2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and nor for ours only but also for the whole world.  3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.  4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in Him.  By this we know that we are in Him.  6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.  1 John 2:1-6

So all of those false professors who walk according to the world and the dictates of their unredeemed flesh are proving their father is the devil.  We don’t need to argue with those who reject the truth and follow lies, we need to present the truth to them and pray that God will save them.  As the dearly beloved of the Father, when we are tempted to sin, let us remember the Holy High Priestly ministry of our glorious Savior, Jesus Christ on our behalf, and let us run to Him in time of need.  May God bless us to shine the light of the glory of the gospel to all around us for their good and Christ’s praise.

15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.  16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in the time of need.   Hebrews 4:15-16

Heavenly Father, so many are deceived and walking in darkness preferring the lies of the enemy to the truth of God.  May we by the enabling of Your Holy Spirit, stand fast for the truth of Your Word the Bible and be faithful witnesses about Jesus Christ who walked this earth and fulfilled Your exact will to give us an understanding that whosoever should repent of their sins and believe in Him has eternal life.  May we be faithful to share the life giving message from the only source of truth which is Your Word the Bible.  Please bless us for the work that You have for us to Your glory.  Amen.

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65 Responses to Understanding

  1. Doula Faith says:

    You speak the Truth, sister.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Bob Wheeler says:

    I certainly agree wholeheartedly with the principle of “Sola Scriptura,” and would also agree that if someone isn’t seriously studying Scripture to ascertain what it says he is, in all likelihood, unconverted. But I still think we need to be careful about judging others. There is a difference between a person who genuinely wants to follow Christ and yet might be misguided or deceived on some of doctrine, and someone who is just plain indifferent to what the Bible says.
    George Whitefield and John Wesley sharply disagreed with each other over Predestination. Does that mean that one of them wasn’t really a Christian? (I would be inclined to argue that it was Wesley who wasn’t following Scripture on this point. But then again, both of them practiced infant baptism — where did they get that from the Bible?)
    The key issue here is what is going on in their hearts — do that have a genuine desire to follow Christ and keep His commandments? Or are they merely playing at Christianity for the status or the comfort it can give? Committed disciples will be genuinely committed to obeying God’s Word — but may disagree among themselves over exactly what that Word says.

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    • Eliza says:

      Jesus said that we will know them by their fruits. He also said that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. We can judge the heart by what these individuals say and do. Otherwise how can we discern between truth and error and turn away from those who propagate error? All error has as its origins the deceitful heart of man led astray by the enemy of our souls, Satan. We must be zealous for the truth and turn from all error and not use the godless excuse of we don’t know their hearts to countenance error. This is a false doctrine that has caused much mischief in the visible church.

      Sinners can give an appearance of esteeming God’s Word all the while they are deceptively undermining it. That is occurring right now within the visible church and has been occurring for millennia. They will ultimately reveal themselves by whom they esteem and by their hypocritical words and actions.

      Does that mean that God’s true children through faith in Jesus Christ can’t be in error or walk contrary to the faith? We know that they can be deceived and can sin, however, Jesus Christ is faithful to bring His children out of the darkness of deceit and into the light of His truth, the Bible. They will rigorously repent of their joining with error and strive with their whole being empowered by the Holy Spirit to live according to the truth. This is the way to discern those who are deceived believers and those who are unbelieving deceivers.

      I believe that the Scriptures are perspicuous for those who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit and that there is just one interpretation for the Scriptures, not many. This is undergirded by the following passage from God’s Word:

      Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. 2 Peter 1:20-21

      So my whole problem is this: Is the Holy Spirit unable to make His Word clear to us? I don’t think so. I think the error comes in from the influence of esteemed individuals throughout church history who have contravened the clear teaching of the Scriptures to their and others detriment. One good example is Augustine of Hippo who grossly spiritualized the Scriptures. He is the fountainhead of infant baptism for the Protestant Church at large and also the source of the curse upon those who refuse to follow it, which Calvin also continued.

      The problem within the visible church isn’t the Scriptures or the Holy Spirit, the problem is that men and women are quick to accept the views of others without being well-versed in God’s Word, (or in spite of it) and aren’t serious students of God’s Word relying upon Him to lead them into the correct interpretation.

      Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some. 2 Timothy 2:15-18

      The false doctrine of infant baptism leads to works salvation which Paul condemned and also condemned those who proclaimed it. Can we just wink at such gross error? No. We must stand for the truth and proclaim the gospel that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life and that no one comes to the Father but through Him. His gospel, the gospel of our salvation, that He died upon the cross for the forgiveness of our sins and rose from the dead for our justification, is mighty to save us and bring us into fellowship with Him and all of those who hold to the truth. We never need the false teaching of fallen man in our lives for our walk with our Savior. May Jesus Christ work in our hearts the unity that comes from knowing Him, being indwelt by His Holy Spirit, and conforming our hearts and minds to the truth of His Holy Word.

      Even so may it be Lord Jesus Christ.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Eliza says:

    Do you know if they were saved? What do you judge by? Do you judge by the esteem given to them by during their lifetimes and through out the subsequent years, or do you judge by what they taught and the fruit that came from their lives?

    They did suffer persecution from the Catholic Church because they protested against the corruption of the Catholic Church and its leadership. They did champion the five Solas: Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura, Solus Christus, Sola Gratia, Soli Deo Gloria. Did they live according to their professed creed? Did they really rely solely on the Scriptures? If you take the testimony of John Calvin from his preface to his work The Institutes of the Christian Religion, you would have to say no, because he confessed that he relied heavily upon Augustine of Hippo, and made the boast that he could have written the entire work from the works of Augustine.

    Was Augustine a believer? What did he believe? He believed contrary to the Scriptures and grossly spiritualized the Scriptures leading to greater infiltration of false teaching into the Catholic Church and also the Protestant Church. Augustine championed infant baptism and cursed any who dared dispute its importance to the visible church as an ordinance ordained of God.

    Where is infant baptism taught in the Scriptures? Augustine and Calvin both said that infant baptism confers on the child a special status before God because of the parents’ faith. How does this teaching hold solely to grace and solely to faith in Christ alone? With this one doctrine we can see that, at least Calvin and Luther, did not hold to the Solas and so made the way for man’s doctrines to be considered of equal status with the Scriptures which is what the Catholic Church taught.

    Have you ever wondered why so many within the leadership of the visible Christian church are willing to give gross heresy a wink and a nod based upon the reputation of the person who holds it? It is because the foundation of the Protestant movement did the very same thing. It is because the church fathers were also heretics and then accepted as genuine believers.

    So I guess according to the majority of those who claim the name of Christ it doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you say that you are a Christian that is good enough for them. If you say that Jesus Christ was born of the Virgin Mary and died upon the Cross and rose again from the dead and is the Son of God then you must be okay. But, we have to get into what all of that means to the person professing those biblical doctrines, because the Catholic Church believes all of those tenets but has imbued them with entirely anti-biblical definitions.

    Many churches today say they believe that the Bible is the Word of God, infallible, inerrant, inspired, but only in the original autographs, and so they agree with liberal scholarship that we don’t have God’s Word extant today and can’t be really sure what He has said to us, and then they through their scholarship become the arbiters of the Words of Scripture as well as their meaning, which is what the Catholic Church, a cult, does.

    All of these questions first go back to the Bible and whether or not we know and believe it is the infallible, inspired, inerrant, preserved Word of God and then judge everything that everyone/anyone says by what the Scriptures teach. Second we have to judge the fruit that has come forth from the professors of faith in Christ, because remember we have been warned that many false teachers have joined up with the church. So for the men that you mentioned,did their work progress genuine biblical faith in Christ or did it retard the faith once for all delivered to the saints. Based on what I know of these men, what they believed and the fruit of their lives, and the fruit that I see all around us it doesn’t look good for them.

    Here is a great link that verifies what I have said regarding the church fathers and Augustine.

    http://www.wayoflife.org/database/church_fathers_a_door_to_rome.html

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bob Wheeler says:

      “So for the men that you mentioned,did their work progress genuine biblical faith in Christ or did it retard the faith once for all delivered to the saints. Based on what I know of these men, what they believed and the fruit of their lives, and the fruit that I see all around us it doesn’t look good for them.” They knew the Bible far better than I do, and multitudes were converted under their ministries. That is far more than I can say for myself. If they were lost, there is frankly no way that I am saved. How many commentaries on the Bible have you written? How many people were converted under your ministry? Where is the evidence of the Holy Spirit working in our lives today?

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      • gracealone1 says:

        You’ve fallen into the ‘numbers’ trap, Bob. If the ‘salvation’ you think you have is because of famous men and their teachings then it is not based on faith in the Lord Jesus, but faith in the teachings of men. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” It is the Holy Spirit that convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment to come and then gifts repentance and faith to the new believer. This is done in spite of the efforts of men who produce only false converts (Matt. 23:15). All “Christian” denominations are nothing more than cults, some taut their heresy “in-your-face” style, while others are more subtle (and therefore more dangerous). The list of names is endless and growing as it seems we are in the beginnings of the ‘great falling away’. I know of no man that is a preacher/teacher or church leader of our day that is faithful to the Lord and His Word. There may be exceptions, but it is likely they will remain in obscurity and unappreciated by today’s “church.” It only takes a few questions to begin to unravel the deceit of such men who hide behind “credentials” and “years of service.” Eliza is trying to point you in the right direction, but your continued stubbornness gets old quickly. Is it more important for you to convince a few here that you’ve been right all along or to humbly submit yourself to the Lord for His correction?

        A shocking answer to the question at hand-can a man promote heresy and be saved-is found in Matt. 7:18-20: “A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you shall know them.” Then the next three verses declare the eternal fate of such men who pretend genuine faith: “Not everyone who says to Me ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And I will declare to them, I NEVER KNEW YOU, depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.” It’s not difficult to determine good or bad fruit, the difficulty for many is choosing to stand with God’s Word instead of their favorite preacher. CHOOSE.

        Darrel

        Liked by 1 person

        • Eliza says:

          Amen Darrel, thank you for your faithful word of exhortation! May Jesus keep us faithful to Him, and lead those who are in error to repent and choose His way instead of their ways.

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      • Eliza says:

        What is the evidence of the Holy Spirit working in out lives? Doesn’t He lead us into all truth? Doesn’t He convict us of sin and bring about genuine repentance in our lives? Doesn’t God the Father give Him to us through our faith in Jesus Christ? Doesn’t He bear witness with our spirits that we are the children of God? Doesn’t He intercede for us with groanings which cannot be uttered? Doesn’t He intercede for us according to the will of God? Doesn’t He produce His fruit in our lives,the fruit of love, joy, peace longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control? Doesn’t He use His truth the Holy Bible to keep us from error? Isn’t He the source of our regeneration when we put our faith in Jesus Christ and His glorious gospel? Doesn’t He work miracles amongst us through our faith in Christ? Doesn’t He reveal Jesus Christ to us through the pages of the Scriptures? Doesn’t He lead us and guide us in our daily lives? I know all of this because this is what God has told me in His Word the Bible and what I have experienced in my life.

        I must say we see the evidence of Satan working in the church as huge numbers of professing “Christians” have left off the doctrine of God’s Word for the doctrines of man. I addressed the reason for this travesty in my previous response, man’s doctrine has supplanted God’s Word and even those who profess the Bible to be the Word of God include a proviso. The work of the Holy Spirit in our day would be for believers to repent of their compromise with false teaching/teachers, and their heart-felt return to the sufficiency of the Scriptures, and their demand that those who teach them, their leaders, expose and reprove any and all false teachers convicting the erring to repent and return to the truth. There would be a wholesale exodus from those denominations and associations that accept the heresy, apostasy and compromise of false teachers and apostates. Believers would love each other with Christ’s love and support each other in every way necessary, materially and spiritually. They would not support false teachers by buying their books, going to their conferences, attending their churches, or being part of their para-church organizations. Believers would reject the wickedness surrounding them. They would reject the Catholic church and all the “evangelicals” who are trying to lead them into that apostate organization. The work of the Holy Spirit in their lives and their love for the Savior would reprove the sinner and by sharing God’s Word they would convict the sinner of their sin and give them the gospel for their salvation, and God would work through their faithful, biblical, godly efforts.

        Lastly, God calls me to be a loving mother, wife, mother-in-law, grandmother, and faithful to Him in all that I say and do. He calls me to have a gentle and quiet spirit and to exhort and reprove my brethren. He calls me to walk with Him in love, mercy and justice. He calls me to call upon Him in the day of trouble and rest in His salvation. We need to judge everything by what the Word of God says, and not by man made criterion.

        But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judges according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: For as much as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God. 1 Peter 1:15-21

        Lord God Almighty please work a mighty work in the hearts and lives of your beloved that they may turn from the spurious and hold fast to the genuine and know they can trust You and what You have said for us in Your Holy Word the Bible.

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  4. Eliza says:

    Two other things came to my mind while working on dinner; first, I will give an answer to God for what what I believe about Jesus Christ, no other.

    27 Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him. 28 Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” John 6:27-29

    The second is Jesus confronted the Jews on their false teaching mostly in the area of their erroneous doctrines about the Sabbath. This false doctrine kept them from recognizing their Savior. If Jesus Christ were on earth today He would confront the religious leaders about their false teaching with the false doctrine of infant baptism. In this doctrine is the overthrow of God’s grace saving the sinner through faith in His Son Jesus Christ.

    14 Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made clay and opened his eyes. 15 Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” 16 Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them. John 9:14-16

    8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works,which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10

    Lord Jesus Christ may I along with all of your people remember that my allegiance is to You and not any religious institution or religious people, but only also to those who are Yours through faith in Your Name.

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  5. Bob Wheeler says:

    “So for the men that you mentioned,did their work progress genuine biblical faith in Christ or did it retard the faith once for all delivered to the saints. Based on what I know of these men, what they believed and the fruit of their lives, and the fruit that I see all around us it doesn’t look good for them.” We’re not talking about anyone “that is a preacher/teacher or church leader of our day,” We’re talking about Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield. And I could add to the list Count Zinzendorf. Is it true that based on what they believed and the fruit of their lives that “it doesn’t look good for them”? Am I really supposed to believe that you two will make it to heaven and they won’t?

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    • unworthy1 says:

      Too many Christians make idols out of men like Calvin, Luther, etc. We are NOT called to follow these men, for they are fallible. We are called to follow Christ and the Bible. The Holy Spirit is the teacher of God’s people and NOT Calvin, Edwards, Whitefield, etc. No one has complete knowledge of scripture, which is why it is dangerous to uphold any man. Yes, we can be edified by certain Godly men, however, we can also be guilty of idolatry, as many are by claiming to be ‘Calvinist’ or ‘Reformed’. Where is the biblical support for such labeling? This is a weapon of Satan to cause division and it works. We should believe what we believe because God has taught us and because it can be found in His word. Never should we rely on another man to teach us truth for the simple fact that man is fallible and adds his own take on things, such as infant baptism which is not supported by Scripture. This problem was an issue in Paul’s day…
      1Co 3:4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?
      1Co 3:5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
      1Co 3:6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
      1Co 3:7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
      I say a hearty ‘AMEN’ to that!

      lyn

      Liked by 2 people

      • Bob Wheeler says:

        Who said anything about “following” Luther or Calvin? I thought it was taken for granted that we would approach such teachers with a “Berean spirit.” Certainly they did not place themselves above God’s Word!

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        • Eliza says:

          Oh, but they did by teaching false doctrine about infant baptism. Also, Calvin’s teaching on predestination has led to the false teaching that Christ did not die for the whole world, limited atonement, which again is not taught in the Scriptures. Lutheran’s worship much the same way that the Catholics do. My husband and I were shocked after we attended a Lutheran church and left before that served the mass. They were called reformers because they wanted to reform the Catholic church so they kept those part of that cult that appealed to them, because they weren’t willing to turn completely away from the Catholic church which should have been their goal based upon the commandment of Scripture.

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      • Bob Wheeler says:

        “The Holy Spirit is the teacher of God’s people and NOT Calvin, Edwards, Whitefield, etc.” And how did you get that idea? Do you believe that the gift of prophecy still exists today?
        The Holy Spirit teaches us by two primary means: 1) His illumination as we meditate on God’s Word, and 2) through men to whom He has given the spiritual gift of teaching in the church. They, of course, are charged to teach only what is in the Bible, and they must do it with the unction of the Holy Spirit.
        Out of the examples I mentioned Calvin was perhaps the best — he was a gifted exegete who wrote commentaries on most of the books of the Bible. This does not mean, however, that he was infallible, and we do not “follow” him blindly. But we can learn from men who are more gifted than ourselves, have a better grasp of scripture than ourselves, and are more spiritually mature than ourselves. We need to be teachable, and not stiff-necked like the children of Israel who wouldn’t listen to Moses!

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        • unworthy1 says:

          Where did I get the idea that the Holy Spirit is the teacher of God’s people? From His word, 1John 2:27 “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.” See also 1 John 2:20, John 14:26, John 16:13
          Yes, we can receive instruction from men, however, it must line up precisely with God’s word or it must be rejected.

          As for Calvin, he is to the reformed camp what the pope is to Roman Catholicism. Yes, we do need to be teachable, but that doesn’t mean we need to exalt mortal men over God the Spirit as our teacher. Calvin taught error, infant baptism. No man is perfect and no man has full revelation, Calvin is not perfect. He was for murdering heretics like Michael Servetus, where is the biblical mandate for this?

          I believe in the doctrines of grace because the Bible plainly teaches them, I would never allow anyone to label me as a ‘Calvinist’ because that is an insult to Christ, who died and gave Himself for me.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Bob Wheeler says:

            I would pretty much agree with everything you said except for the statement “As for Calvin, he is to the reformed camp what the pope is to Roman Catholicism.” I have never heard a Reformed theologian say any such thing.

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  6. gracealone1 says:

    Believe whatever you like, Bob Wheeler. Here is the fruit that you have borne for all to see: 1) You care more for the lives, work, and words of men who have been treated kindly by their worldly brothers through selective accounts of ‘history’ to lift these men up farther (sometimes above God) than is right and just to a point of infallibility, whose words mean more to you than those of the Scriptures. 2) You refuse to even consider that you are wrong about these men and choose instead to attack those who would show you the truth of the Word and how these men that you so revere and worship are more ‘credible’ for you than Jesus Christ Himself. 3) Any claim you may pretend to possess “salvation” is left vacuous, vain, meaningless, and worthless because you place men above the Lord Jesus. Examine yourself to see whether you are in the faith. A real Christian would never elevate another man or himself above the One who died and rose again to save him. 4) Why do you defend blatant sin? Why do you defend the offenders of the God Whom you claim to love? Are you so ignorant of Scripture and the Character of God that you cannot detect the “angel of light” aspect of the men who teach 90% truth intermingled with their 10% lies? The words you speak say that you cannot. 5) Why are these men so important to you? Did they save you? Which one of these men died and rose again as the substitute for the punishment of your sins?

    May the Lord be pleased to break through your cold heart that is so obvious to all who read your words, Bob.

    Darrel

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bob Wheeler says:

      The tone of your reply speaks for itself. Let each draw his own conclusion.

      Like

      • gracealone1 says:

        The last time someone played the “tone” card he turned out to be an ecumenical, quasi-charismatic, seminary “educated”, infallible nut-job, with zero regard for the Word of God. If you care to join his ranks be my guest, otherwise try to respond with something that resembles cogent thought.

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  7. Eliza says:

    Dear Bob,
    He is highly esteemed, and the esteem given to him, is replicated by the esteem given to others in the Reformed camp so that those who follow them are not careful to make sure their doctrine lines up with the Scripture.

    There is the problem of false teaching in the Reformed camp, along with false teachers hailed as apologists that should be read and esteemed. There is so much wrong, and that error has a genesis; it began with those who were not willing to turn away from the false teaching/false teachers of Catholicism, but rather wanted to reform them and keep portions of that corrupt and vile edifice that is the head of the end time whore used by the Antichrist for his means until his power is secure and established and then he will turn on that wicked apostate church. Since they did not fear God and turn from the lie, we see that Protestant denominations have been and are returning to the leadership of the apostate Catholic church and so will be part of the end time false church to their own destruction. May Jesus Christ bless us to follow Him and remember that our allegiance is to Him and no other.

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    • Bob Wheeler says:

      Here’s where you have to be careful about judging other people’s motives. Calvin’s conscious intention was to follow only what Scripture says, and Reformed theologians have engaged in enormous debates about exactly what the Bible teaches. For example, they would argue that the Bible clearly and explicitly teaches predestination, in passages such as Romans chapter 9, and that you are the one who is following man’s teaching on the subject.
      Now, was Calvin completely successful in reforming the church according to God’s Word? No, of course not. That was because like all the rest of us he was a human being, limited in his knowledge and understanding, and influenced by his time and circumstances.
      So all of us must begin with Scripture — our conscious aim must be to understand what God Himself has revealed to us. And then we consider the arguments of theologians, like Calvin, who were also trying to be biblical, and like the Bereans compare what they said with the Bible.
      Now you might ask the question, why bother with the human theologians at all? Why not just read the Bible and chuck the rest? Theoretically we could do that, and arrive at a perfect understanding of God’s will. But all of us our limited in our understanding, and we are stimulated by each other to dig deeper into God’s Word. I personally have benefited greatly by reading older theologians — they are so much more biblical and spiritual than modern writers, and they have enabled me to look beyond the spiritually weak modern church to catch a glimpse, if even so very faint, of the glory of God. To me the greatest tragedy is that so many modern Christians think that the church of Laodicea is normal — it is the only church they know! And to go back and read the Puritans, to read men who were on fire for the Lord, was an eye opening experience! But in the end it must lead us back to Scripture, and we realize (to our shame and humiliation!) that is was all right there all along — we just didn’t see it!
      As for the extent of the atonement, that is an extremely difficult and abstruse subject. But a Reformed theologian like the English Puritan John Owen would say that your view of the atonement leads directly to a rejection of the idea that Christ literally paid for our sins on the cross — and historically he was right. Critics of “Calvinism” (falsely so-called) have usually wound up adopting the governmental view of the atonement, arguing that Christ’s death didn’t actually take away anyone’s guilt, since many for whom Christ allegedly died go to hell anyway. So who’s being a false teacher here? I’ll let you decide. (Ask yourself the question, what does it mean for Christ to “redeem” someone.)

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      • Eliza says:

        Wow! No Scripture here, and that is where the problem lies. There are multiple verses that state that Christ died for the sins of the whole world, are we to let meager human reason lead us to argue with Scripture? This is so sad and is why the church is in the deplorable state that it is in. You have not given me a Scriptural answer, you continue to rely on the wisdom of man to the usurpation of God’s clear teaching in His Holy Word. Yes, the Holy Spirit who wrote the Scriptures is able to give us an understanding of the truth if we rely solely upon Him for His guidance and revelation of the truth. We must humble ourselves and wrench ourselves from the multiple voices that clamor for our attention to the exclusion of the quiet gentle leading of the Holy Spirit. Please Bob, give that a try. Just immerse yourself in Scripture for a month, relying only on the Holy Spirit to speak to you. If you don’t understand a verse then ask Him, don’t go to commentaries. See what happens. We must with singular purpose strive to be faithful and true to our Savior, by His mercy and grace. May Jesus Christ our glorious Savior grant it to be so.

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        • Bob Wheeler says:

          If you want the essence of Reformed theology, read Eph. 1:3-14 (or Rom. 8:28-30, for that matter, or Eph. 2:8-10).
          Basically all that Reformed theology says is that the Bible should be taken literally when it says that God chose us (Eph.1:4); redeemed us (Rev. 5:9); made us alive (Eph. 2:4,5), and keeps us (I Pet. 1:5). We don’t use human logic (the way John Wesley did) to twist the meaning of Scripture so that when the Bible says God chose us we try to make it say that we chose Him.
          Or, another way of looking at it is to pay attention to what the Bible says about what God does. There is the whole difference between biblical Christianity and modern American Evangelicalism, and the whole reason why modern American Evangelicalism is in such deep trouble — we have eliminated God from the life of our churches because we look at religion as primarily a human activity.
          Or if you really want to know where Calvin got his theology, the Scripture index to the Institutes is 39 pages long! You can look up all the references during you spare time.
          As I said, the subject of the extent of the atonement is extremely abstruse and difficult. But here again, we must be careful to go by what the Bible says, and not try to twist and distort it to conform to our own preconceived ideas. Take a look, for example, at Tit. 2:11-14. On the one hand it states, in verse 11 “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,” suggesting the free offer of the gospel. In this sense Christ can be said to have died for all mankind. On the other hand, it says in 145 “who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.” Here we have the essence of what is sometimes called “Limited Atonement” or “Particular Redemption.” The object of the atonement was to “redeem” us — a price was paid to secure our freedom from slavery or imprisonment — and to “purify for Himself His own special people” — in other words, to secure for Himself a specific group of people who would be His, as distinct from the rest of the world. The Doctrine of Limited Atonement simply stresses that it was a literal substitution (the death of one Person for a specific group of people) and the literal payment of a debt.
          But there are serious difficulties on both sides. On the Arminian side who have Christ dying for people who still go to hell — which suggests that the death of Christ, by itself, accomplished nothing. To get around this problem critics of “Calvinism” (the way to get rid of Bible doctrine is to brand it with someone else’s name!) have tried a variety of solutions. One is the “Governmental View” of the Atonement, which states that the death of Christ was not a literal payment of a debt, but merely an expression of righteous indignation on God’s part, to make it possible for Him to forgive sin without impugning His justice. Another approach, found in some Dispensational circles, is that Christ really did take away the sin of the entire human race — and people go to hell solely for the sin of not believing in Jesus. But what if they never had an opportunity to hear of Jesus? Do they go to heaven, then?
          On the “Calvinistic” side the problem is that if Christ literally paid the penalty for our sins on the cross, then logically you would think that the elect are saved from all eternity, before they were even born (John Gill actually took this position.). But the Bible makes it clear that we are justified by faith — we actually have to believe in order to be saved.
          And what does the Bible say about this:
          “But He was wounded for our iniquities;
          The chastisement of our peace was upon Him,
          And by His stripes we are healed.” (Isa. 53:5).

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          • Eliza says:

            Yes, Calvin relied heavily on Scripture, but he also relied heavily on the false teacher Augustine, where he gets his false teaching about infant baptism. Yes, that false doctrine is enough to label him a false teacher for it has done much mischief within the visible church. You can look up what I have written about infant baptism by using the search engine.

            Before you assume that I reject the teaching in the Scriptures about predestination, you should enter that term on my site and see what I have written.

            The problem lies with men esteeming their wisdom as having the final say on what is written in the Scriptures. Their minds are informing their doctrine as they study Scripture, rather than the doctrine of the Scriptures informing their minds by the power of the Holy Spirit.

            Well, all I can say is just stick with the Bible and you can’t go astray because of the promise of Jesus Christ:

            11 And He said to them, “To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to those who are outside, all things come in parables,…23 “If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” 24 Then He said to them, “Take heed what you hear. With the same measure you use, it will be measured to you; and to you who hear, more will be given. 25 For whoever has, to him more will be given; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.” Mark 4:11 & 23-25

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        • Bob Wheeler says:

          I should mention that I have read the entire New Testament in the original Greek, and yes, commentaries are helpful to explain the cultural background and the semantic nuances of obscure passages. Like I say, I don’t claim to know everything, wisdom was not born with me, and there are people who know more than I do. I can learn from them “Do not be wise in your own eyes . . ” (Prov. 3:7).

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  8. Eliza says:

    Hi Bob,
    I will take what you have written as your final statements on this matter. Today, while thinking about what you have written, I was reminded that there are two supremely vital issues that we must always consider when appraising the teaching of others.

    1. Does the teaching accord with the glorious gospel of our Great God and Savior Jesus Christ that we are saved by grace through faith in Him alone without any works?

    2. Does the teaching submit itself to the clear declarations of Scripture?

    In both instances of the false teachings of infant baptism and limited atonement the answer is a resounding no! Infant baptism teaches contrary to John 1:12-13

    12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His Name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12-13

    The doctrine of infant baptism is undone by these verses and shown to be a false teaching, because it relies on blood, will of the flesh, and the will of man, and has nothing to do with God’s sovereign work of regeneration in the dead spirit of a slave to sin.

    Limited atonement is contrary to the clear declarations of Scripture and is proven to be false teaching.

    9 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance. 10 For to this end we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. 11 These things command and teach. 1 Timothy 4:9-11

    1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. 1 John 2:1-2

    14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 1 John 4:14-15

    Jesus died for all sinners, so that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. Limiting the work of Christ, His atonement, limits His ability to save to the uttermost those who call upon Him, and undermines that we are saved by faith in our Savior Jesus Christ; it undermines our firm rejoicing to the end!

    Since these men purported to be doctors of the church they should have know without a shadow of a doubt that what they were attesting was spurious and without merit. They blindly followed the heresy of the blind. Those who promulgate false doctrine are false teachers and should be avoided at all costs according to the Scriptures. They are not serving Christ but they are serving their own fleshly desires and are led astray by the enemy of our souls. To allow them the name of Christ, when they contradict the truth of Christ and His amazing, almighty glorious work for our salvation, is to side with the enemy of our souls. We cannot assume that error is minor, for as you testified, it leads to a Laodicean mentality that negates the power of God’s Holy work in our lives by His Holy Spirit. We must be zealous for the truth at all costs and not wink at sin and error no matter who the teacher is. May our glorious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ keep us faithful to Him for His glory, the advancement of His kingdom and the salvation of lost souls. Hallelujah! Yes, Lord Jesus, please do your faithful work in our hearts and minds according to Your holiness, power and truth.

    17 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. 18 For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. 19 For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. 20 And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen. Romans 16:17-20

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    • Bob Wheeler says:

      “To allow them the name of Christ, when they contradict the truth of Christ and His amazing, almighty glorious work for our salvation, is to side with the enemy of our souls.”
      Just to make sure that I understand you correctly before I reply on my own blog, are you saying with this statement that no one who believes in infant baptism is a Christian?

      Like

      • Eliza says:

        They could be believers who are deceived by false teaching, but again, the works of man have no place in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Paul, by the Holy Spirit, made it abundantly clear that another gospel is accursed and those who hold to it are doomed. Was Augustine saved? He was a false teacher and Calvin included infant baptism because of Augustine’s ungodly influence. That makes Calvin a propagator of false doctrine. Did he do it unintentionally? Where in the Bible is infant baptism taught? It is a pernicious false teaching that gives a false assurance to many who are deceived by it and are still bound for hell. Is that alright with you? You need to think this one out for yourself for many are ensnared by this false teaching and yes are bound for hell.

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      • Eliza says:

        Do you agree with those who practice infant baptism that the infants are regenerated without conscious faith in Christ by the rite of baptism? Isn’t that a work that justifies sinners? Who do you side with? Do you side with fallen man or God in His Word.? Are you willing to side with those who set their confidence in their right standing with God based upon their baptism as infants? Do you believe that we are saved by grace through faith, or are we saved by a meritorious work that commends us to God? These are questions that you must ask yourself and then see if those who teach the false teaching of infant baptism are indeed part of the body of Christ.

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  9. unworthy1 says:

    Look into these verses…

    Mat 20:28 even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
    Mat 26:28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which is shed for many unto remission of sins.
    Rom 5:15 But not as the trespass, so also is the free gift. For if by the trespass of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God, and the gift by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abound unto the many.
    Rom 5:19 For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the one shall the many be made righteous.

    We know that the Bible does not contradict, so did Christ die for all, or only for His elect? If Christ died for all men, then why are all not saved? Did Christ fail to secure eternal life for them?
    The 17th Century Puritan, John Owen, wrestled with this very question. According to Owen’s reasoning, the answer to that question is that Christ either died for:

    (1) all the sins of all men;
    (2) all the sins of some men; or
    (3) some of the sins of all men.

    Again, historic Christianity states that God poured out wrath, due to sinful men and women, on His son. So, Owen concluded that if number 1 were true (Christ died for all the sins of all men), then we have to explain how it is that all men are not free from the punishment due their sin. It’s a form of “double jeopardy.” Christ died for every man’s sin, yet some of those men have to pay yet another, eternal debt for that same sin.

    If number 2 is true (Christ died for all the sins of some men), then Christ is the sufficient substitute for all the sins of the elect and there is no injustice involved in judging those who have not been so redeemed.

    If number 3 is true (Christ died for some of the sins of all men) then all men have some sins to answer for. Consequently, no one is truly “saved” by Christ’s work at Calvary. If anyone were to end up in Heaven, it would be the result of their meritorious effort, essentially finishing what Christ only partially did. Meanwhile, those who are judged are condemned on the basis of those sins for which Christ did not pay.
    If Christ paid the sin price for all the sins of all men, then His sacrifice would have to equally cover the sin of unbelief.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Eliza says:

      Sorry, there goes the reasoning of men, and be it ever so persuasive, yet I cannot contradict what the Scriptures say.

      Election doesn’t relate to Christ’s sacrifice, but rather it relates to the utter inability of the sinner to repent and trust Christ as their Savior. Christ’s death is meritorious for only those who believe and only those who are the elect will believe because of the utter inability of the sinner to believe the gospel. Nowhere is it taught that Jesus Christ died for a few, on the contrary, I gave three verses that explicitly say otherwise. There are other verses that say the same thing. Jesus Christ took the punishment for all sinners and appeased the wrath of God, that is what propitiation means. John, by the power of the Holy Spirit, says that Jesus Christ is the propitiation for the whole world, that means everyone. The reason that not all are saved is because of the deadness of the sinner to God and His way of salvation. The gospels underscore this fact, along with Jesus saying that unless the Father draws the sinner they will not believe. God is just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Romans chapter 3 is clear that His salvation is offered to all because all have sinned.

      19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may be guilty before God. 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin. 21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. 27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law. 29 Or is He the God of the Jews only? Is He not also the God of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also, 30 since there is one God who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith. 31 Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not? On the contrary, we establish the law. Romans 3:19-31

      This wonderful passage teaching us justification and righteousness through faith in Jesus Christ comes after Paul, by the direction of God, indicts the whole world as evil, unprofitable and unable to seek after God, because they have no fear of God in their hearts. Since the whole of humanity is depraved, cut off from the life of God because of inherited sin and willful sin, God in His mercy and grace elects those whom He chooses to salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. This in no way limits Christ work on the cross of every human being.

      Think about Israel. All were included with Moses when they left Egypt, but only a very few believed. Did that make the deliverance of Moses for the Israelites ineffective? No, they ones who believed, had faith, received the ultimate benefit, even though all were delivered from Egypt, while those who didn’t believe were destroyed.

      Scripture does not teach a limited atonement, and even though the mind of man tries to reason it out with their clauses and demands, I will believe what the Bible says, which is God’s Word over the reasoning of any man anytime. May Jesus Christ our glorious Lord and Savior grant us understanding for His praise and our edification. Even so Jesus may it be so.

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  10. gracealone1 says:

    The assertion that there is not a limited atonement comes straight out of the Arminian playbook and stands in defiance of Scripture. It is an affront to the Character of God, His predestination of some to eternal life and others to eternal damnation, and blaspheme of the Name of Christ in that it says that His sacrifice did not accomplish all that it was intended to do. It flings open the door of “free-will” salvation and puts man as sovereign over his eternal fate, leaving God to squirm in hopes that someone will avail themselves of His “offer.”

    2 Peter 2 clearly teaches the Doctrine of Reprobation where certain men are predestined to hell. V. 17: “…for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever…” Similar statements about these men predestined to hell can be found in Jude. But without limited atonement the Arminians say that Christ died for these men also and yet the Scripture is clear that their fate has been sealed FOREVER.

    Mark 10:45 says: “For the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His life a ransom for many.” Jesus did not say that He gave His life for all of humanity, but “for many.”

    John 10:15: “As the Father knows Me even so I know the Father, and I lay down My life for the sheep.” Again, Jesus does not say for all of humanity, but only for the sheep. V. 26: “But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.” To believe is not in a man by heritage, or his own will, but is a gift of God given only to his elect.

    There are other verses, but these must not be discarded in favor of a man-made illusion that Christ died for the sins of every man of all time, all over the earth. The same people that force this nonsense on unsuspecting and unlearned Christians will also tell you that Christ died for the sins of every man, but man sends himself to hell because he refuses to believe. They conveniently exclude the sin of unbelief from the list of sins that Christ died for to shift the blame away from their untenable doctrine and the wicked man who does not believe. What convoluted double-speak. If it is as you say, that Christ died for all the sins of all mankind what happens to those who blaspheme the Holy Spirit? According to Scripture they will NEVER be forgiven, but according to this Arminian fantasy doctrine they somehow will be received into heaven upon their death if they “believe.” Say what????

    This notion of an unlimited atonement destroys Scriptures to make itself believable. It completely ignores most of the NT for the sake of a few verses that have been massaged, and twisted almost beyond recognition. Verses like John 3:16 where He speaks to believers; 2Pet. 3:9, again, speaking directly to believers and not the entire world. Forgive me, but I forget the other favorite of those who do not fear God, but choose instead to relegate Him to a second class god by saying that Christ died for all men, but still many end up in hell-and this by their own choosing. This is a frontal assault on the Sovereignty of God, the all-sufficient sacrifice of the Lord Jesus FOR HIS ELECT, and an insult to the Holy Spirit (a VERY dangerous thing to do) that He is unable to bring God’s chosen to Himself.

    Lord help you to understand
    Darrel

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bob Wheeler says:

      Darrel,
      If you don’t mind my asking, what is your theological background? Primitive Baptist? Netherlands Reformed? Plymouth Brethren? of something else?

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      • Lyn says:

        Why does one have to adhere to a certain group Bob? I think it’s safe to say Darrel is a bible believing follower of Christ and leave off man made labels.

        Like

        • Bob Wheeler says:

          Most Evangelical Christians will tell you that they are simply going by what the Bible says — why then do they have so many opinions about theological matters? It would be helpfui to know where Darryl coming from so we could all know how to respond.
          I go strictly by what the Bible says — but that doesn’t tell you much about what I believe, does it?

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          • unworthy1 says:

            If you want to know if an evangelical is truly Christian, compare their doctrine with God’s word. Why are there so many opinions? Because most rely on the teachings of men.

            Liked by 1 person

  11. Eliza says:

    The verses I quoted are not massaged they say what they say simply and eloquently. I can’t refute what God’s Word says. Yes, we know the Christ died especially for His own, but He also died for all sinners throughout all time. If the sinner doesn’t have to believe this then faith is discarded and the gospel that Paul and the apostles preached is undone.

    1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved if you hold fast that word which I preached to you–unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 6 After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. 1 Corinthians 15:1-6

    All sinners are commanded everywhere to repent and believe the gospel, why would Paul state that if Christ didn’t die for all sinners?

    30 “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, 31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.” Acts 17:30-31

    Why does God command all men everywhere to repent? He is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

    1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, 2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. 3 for this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5 For their is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, 7 for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle–I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying–a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-7

    So again, here are the verses that disprove the false teaching of limited atonement.

    9 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance. 10 For to this end we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. 11 These things command and teach. 1 Timothy 4:9-11

    1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. 1 John 2:1-2

    14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 1 John 4:14-15

    29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29

    14 ” And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:14-18

    I’d much rather rest in the truth of Scripture, God’s Word, then in the vain musings of men who are merely perpetrating intellectual surmisings of false teachers. Jesus Christ thank you that I can share the gospel with any and all and trust You to save the sinner Whom you have called.

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    • gracealone1 says:

      Using the Scriptures you have provided let’s see if they really say Christ’s sacrifice is for every man of all time or just for the elect. Referring to Rom. 3:19-31 it completely destroys the overall meaning if the preceding verses (Rom. 3:1-18) are not part of the conclusion making process also. In vs. 10-18 we find the utter hopelessness of ALL of mankind. Not only is there “none righteous” but there is “none who seeks after God”. The blessed joy and hope of v. 22 is impossible to achieve apart from the sole action of God in the believer to cause him to repent and believe (Phil. 2:13; Eph. 2:8&9; 1Cor. 4:7). “Unlimited atonement” by it’s very nature and definition takes the action of repentance and the acquiring of faith out of the hands of God and places it squarely in the lap of the “prospective” believer, who has only deceived himself into some form of assurance that he is “saved”. Rom. 3:22 “…to all and on all who believe [on Christ for salvation]…” Absolutely true! But nowhere (in all of Rom.3) does it even hint at an ‘unlimited atonement’.

      1Cor. 15:3 does not say that Christ died for the sins of all mankind, but specifically “for our sins” the elect only. Acts 17:30 &31 gives zero indication of ‘unlimited atonement’ at all. It is a simple command to all men everywhere to repent and believe the Gospel, just as Jesus commanded all whom He spoke to. 1Tim. 4:9-11, indeed He is the Savior of all mankind for there is no other Savior (Acts 4:12) but that does not mean that He will save all of mankind, if that were the case then universalism would be an accepted doctrine and there would be no need to preach the Gospel to every creature. 1John 2:1&2. The most pressing question to be answered about this verse is this: If Jesus did in fact become the propitiation for the sins of the whole world (every man that ever lived or will live) and every sin that men commit is justly forgiven, then why is anyone in hell? This is the acid test for the validity of unlimited atonement and yet no one has ever answered that question. Another that must be answered is this: If God has forgiven all of men sins because Jesus died and rose again how can He be justified to punish anyone in hell if Jesus did in fact pay the full substitutionary price? Again, did Christ not die for all the sins of all men, so what of those who have blasphemed the Holy Spirit? What of those whose only supposed sin is that of “unbelief” will they skate by? How?

      John 1:29, did Jesus really take away all the sin of the world? If so why are so many dying without Him, who still worship idols to their dying day? Did John lie? Does not such a claim make Jesus out to be some sort of inept imposter who claims one thing (the forgiveness of all men’s sins) and delivers men to hell for the sins He somehow did not cover by His sacrifice on the cross? What sheer lunacy to even entertain such a thought, muchless to promote a doctrine (“unlimited atonement”) that states this emphatically.

      Claiming to rest on the Word of God and actually doing it are all too often two different things. To state that ‘unlimited atonement’ is clearly stated in the Scriptures one must discard a good portion of the NT and a lot of the OT. To make that doctrine “work” predestination, election, foreknowledge and even perseverance must be sacrificed because it relies solely on the actions of a spiritually dead person who does not even know his condition apart from the enlightenment afforded by the Holy Spirit. If Scripture is to be our only guide then please consider this: Matt. 13:14&15. Why would Jesus say such a “hard” thing to those whom He intended to save and for those He supposedly died for? He would not, because they were not the “chosen ones” and would NEVER be saved. Also John 17:9. “I pray for them, [His disciples} I DO NOT PRAY FOR THE WORLD but for those You have given Me, for they are Yours.” Would you have people believe that our Lord is so cold and heartless as to NOT PRAY for those for whom He died? This is what the doctrine of unlimited atonement gets to in the bottom line.

      More later if you will allow it, Darrel

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      • Eliza says:

        We have to consider the whole of Scripture. Here is a passage that helps to put this all in context:

        5 And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which would be spoken afterward, 6 but Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end. 7 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you will hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness, 9 where your fathers tested Me, tried Me, and saw My works forty years. 10 Therefore I was angry with that generation, And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart, And they have not known My ways.’ 11 So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.'” 12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; 13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today.” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, 15 while it is said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” 16 For who , having heard, rebelled? Indeed, was it not all who came out of Egypt, led by Moses? 17 Now with whom was He angry forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? 19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. 1 Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. 2 For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. 3 For we who have believed do enter that rest, as He has said: “So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.'” although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4 For He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all His works”. 5 and again in this place: “They shall not enter My rest.” 6 Since therefore it remains that some must enter it, and those to whom it was first preached did not enter because of disobedience, 7 again, He designates a certain day, saying with David, “Today,” after such a long time, as it has been said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts.” 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, then He would not afterward have spoken of another day. 9 There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. 10 For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His. 11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience, Hebrews 3:5-4:11

        Moses delivered all of the children of Israel, but only a few entered into the Promised Land because of rebellion that resulted from unbelief. In the same way, Jesus Christ has taken away the sins of all mankind, but His work is only accounted effective for those who believe. Paul makes the point that Christ’s deliverance for all men is foreshadowed in the deliverance that Moses gave to the people of Israel, but it was ineffective for the majority because of their disobedient unbelief. Do you see what keeps Christ’s work from ushering any into the rest of God? The only thing that keeps any from enjoying the rest of God, rest from our own works for redemption, righteousness and reconciliation with God, is the sin of disobedient unbelief. Because all are sinners,and in sinful rebellion against God, unless God draws the sinner to Himself, then none would believe, but by the same token we are all held accountable for our rebellious unbelief, and commanded to repent and believe the gospel.

        This foreshadowing of the work of Christ through the deliverance by the hand of Moses is again presented in 1 Corinthians 10.

        1 Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, 2 all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and the sea 3 all ate the same spiritual food, 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. 5 But with most of them God was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. 6 Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. 7 And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.” 8 Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; 9 nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; 10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. 1 Corinthians 10:1-11

        So, if the Israelites saw all that God did and gave them a great deliverance, was with them through the cloud and Christ, and yet they perished in sinful unbelief, the deliverance and God’s presence were not ineffective, their unbelief kept them from profiting by that deliverance and evidence of God’s protective care. So it is with Christ’s all sufficient work on the cross, the sinner doesn’t receive its benefit because of willful unbelief.

        This truth is further proven by the following passage out of 2 Corinthians 5.

        18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21

        You used a lot of reasoning but didn’t make a persuasive argument from Scripture. One thing you failed to include from that passage out of John 17 is all of the ones for whom Christ prayed. Here let me include it for you:

        16 “They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them by Your truth. Your Word is truth. 18 As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth. 20 I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. John 17:16-21

        The preaching of the gospel through the ministry of the Word and the Spirit is the means that God uses to bring sinners to Himself as they repent and believe the gospel. Jesus prays for any who will believe in the gospel because of the testimony contained in the Scriptures about Him. Why would He want the world to believe that the Father sent Him? So they can repent and believe in Him for salvation. Why did the Father send Jesus into the world?

        14 And we have seen and testify that the Father sent the Son as Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 1 John 4:14-15

        John here is echoing the very thing that he heard Jesus pray to the Father, and then follows up on the commission that Jesus gave him in the following verses:

        11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God. 1 John 5:11-13

        The atonement is not limited. No amount of human reasoning can make it such. Praise God all who will answer God’s call, repent of their sins and put their faith in Jesus Christ are saved as testified by the Scriptures. I will take the testimony of Scripture over the vain reasoning of man anytime.

        Lord Jesus Christ, You are glorified by the amazing work that you did on the cross for sinners, reconciling to yourself the world, not imputing their trespasses against them so that the message of reconciliation, full and complete can be preached to all creation and that sinners may repent and put their faith in You as their Savior. Lord Jesus Christ please send out workers into Your harvest field for it is white for harvest. Amen, may it be so.

        Like

      • Eliza says:

        You have stated your position more than once, that is sufficient. I will believe God’s Word rather than the testimony of fallen men.

        Like

  12. Bob Wheeler says:

    Boy, did I ever open a can of worms!
    For the record;
    1) Infant baptism does not necessarily mean baptismal regeneration. Here is how the Westminster Confession of Faith (attempted to) explain it: “Although it be a great sin to contemn or neglect this ordinance, yet grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed unto it, as that no person can be regenerated, or saved, without it; or, that all that are baptized are undoubtedly regenerated.” Chapter XXVIII, Section V.
    2) Limited Atonement does not necessarily mean a denial of the free offer of the gospel. What the Synod of Dort actually said on the subject is this:
    “The death of the Son of God is the only and most perfect sacrifice and satisfaction for sin, and is of infinite worth and value, abundantly sufficient to expiate the sins of the whole world.” Second Head of Doctrine, Article 3.
    “Moreover, the promise of the gospel is that whosoever believes in Christ crucified shall not perish, but have eternal life. This promise, together with the command to repent and believe, ought to be declared and published to all nations, and to all persons promiscuously and without distinction, to whom God out of His good pleasure sends the gospel.” Article 5.
    “And, whereas many who are called by the gospel do not repent nor believe in Christ, but perish in unbelief, this is not owing to any defect or insufficiency in the sacrifice offered by Christ upon the cross, but is wholly to be imputed to themselves.” Article 6.
    So, to return to my original question, Eliza, are you saying that all of the theologians at Dort and Westminster were false teachers who went straight to hell when they died? Are you prepared to state categorically that none of them were saved?

    Like

  13. Eliza says:

    The theologians at Dort are not promoting limited atonement. Unless, in another article they say that they do. What you have written there says they believe that Christ died for the sins of the whole world,that all are called to repent and believe, and that Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient for the sinner’s salvation when that sinner repents and believes, isn’t that what the Bible says and what I believe and have been writing? If they then state that Christ’s sacrifice, His atonement, is limited then they are speaking out both sides of their mouths which is a great problem in the visible church today, with many prominent leaders doing the very same thing so that the truth is cut with the lie, and becomes damnable heresy.

    The theologians of the Westminster Confession are hedging their bets. They say that on the one hand through infant baptism a sinner can experience grace, salvation, and regeneration through this rite, although not all need to be baptized as infants to experience God’s salvation, nor is everyone who is baptized as an infant saved. Which is it? This is even more obscure than what John Calvin and Augustine taught. They were confused because they taught as doctrine what cannot be justified by the Scriptures. If sinners are saved by the rite of baptism then we had better baptize all of the infants that are born to church attenders to make sure they go to heaven when they die. I suppose the distinction for the Westminster theologians was the faith of the parents, but again that false doctrine overthrows the explicit teaching of John 1:12-13

    12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12-13

    You keep upping the ante Bob. How many through the ages who held to infant baptism and limited atonement are saved, Bob? Do you know? How can you be sure? This is what God’s Word says about those who add to or take away from His Word:

    18 For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. Revelation 22:18-19

    So whose side do you want to be on? Do you want to be on the side of the myriads of theologians who have added to or taken away from the Word of God through their man-centered theology, or do you want to join with the apostles who followed the Lord Jesus Christ who said this about His Word:

    15 And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God. 16 The law and the prophets were until John. Since that time the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it. 17 It is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one tittle of the law to fail. Luke 16:15-17

    33 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.” Luke 21:23

    So whose side are you on Bob? Dead theologians whose words are but dust, or the living God whose word is eternal and settled in heaven?

    Don’t ask me those leading questions anymore Bob, you have been warned.

    Like

  14. gracealone1 says:

    Bob Wheeler,
    Of all the questions I posed to you over the past few threads (months) you gave a half-hearted effort to “answer” two or three—maybe. Now you have the gall to ask something that you have yet to declare about yourself (though any such ‘declaration’ would be trumped by your many empty words and vain philosophy). You’re so transparent, Bob Wheeler, you only seek fodder for your next attack on the Word of God and it is highly likely you only want some reason other than the Scriptures to find fault in me. You’re not very good at presenting your case for your arguments, the holes are huge. I will give you the courtesy of saying flat out I WILL NOT ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS which is more than you have done while you seek to hide behind much Christianese and exhibit an unteachable, arrogant, elite, and infallible attitude.

    I really hope that God will grant you repentance, because if He does not, there is no hope for you.
    Darrel

    Like

  15. Bob Wheeler says:

    I love God. And I love the Bible because it is God’s Word.
    “Thou shalt guide with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.” Psalm 73:24-26.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Eliza says:

      That must be our testimony as believers. Did you grow up in the church? What is your testimony of salvation? I would love to know.

      Like

      • Bob Wheeler says:

        I was basically raised in a Fundamentalist Baptist church (General Association of Regular Baptist Churches, and went to Baptist Bible College of PA for two years after graduating from high school. I originally made a profession of faith when I was 7. An evangelist came to our church and spoke to our youth group. About all that I remember is that he said that we were going to hell if we didn’t get saved. And I knew I was a sinner — I had a bad temper and I was an inveterate liar, and so when I got home I prayed and asked Christ to save me.
        I guess when you’re in your late teens or early twenties you naturally can’t help wondering if some of the things you were taught as a youngster were really true, but at that point in my life there were several influences that made me really think. For a while I was attending a Reformed Episcopal church where I heard some really good expository preaching from the book of Romans, and I had a really godly history professor at the college who taught us about the Anabaptists, the Puritans and revivals. I was also influenced by some books that I read at that time — including The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas a Kempis (I know, he isn’t very sound — but he did make me think about what it means to love Christ), and The Escape from Reason, by Francis A. Schaeffer, which got me thinking about apologetics. I also heard some taped sermons by Martyn Lloyd-Jones, who remains one of my heroes. As I thought about it, I had to ask myself, what is the alternative to Christianity? I couldn’t bring myself to believe in the theory of evolution, and if what was going on in the world then was any indication of where secular society was headed, it looked like a dead end to me. Christianity really did make sense.
        And then one day God revealed Himself to me in prayer. A friend of mine and myself had committed ourselves to spending a certain amount of time each day to prayer, but it was pretty much a lifeless, mechanical exercise. Then one night, when I was back at home, I was praying by myself and the thought suddenly hit me — do you know who you’re talking to? I was terrified! I abruptly stopped praying and crawled into bed. The next night I tried again — i kept it brief, maybe only praying about 5 minutes or so, but I felt I was a lot more reverent than I had ever been before. I think it was then that it dawned on me that God is a real person, the true and living God, and that we need to try to communicate to Him and listen to Him in return.
        I later spent time in the Army — once, when I was stationed in Europe, I got to visit L’Abri and met Francis Schaeffer in person. I then spent two years at Eastern Mennonite College and two more years at Westminster Seminary, which was frankly kind of spiritually barren. It was also at that time that I started attending Trinity Baptist Church of Montvale, NJ, where Al Martin was the pastor. I think he recommended some books by A.W. Tozer, which kind of got me back on track spiritually. Tozer is interesting, but different — he would quote a lot of Catholic authors, and was exegetically weak at points, but would stress the importance of having a genuine personal relationship with God.
        Theologically I’m basically a Reformed Baptist — I read lots of different authors — in my library I have everything from Thomas Aquinas to Karl Marx to Friedrich Nietzsche. But I always keep in mind that we are dependent on divine revelation for our understanding of the meaning and purpose of life, and that everything must be tested by God’s Word. The Bible itself must be the central focus of our study. Other authors can pose the questions and stimulate our thinking, but the answers have to come from the Bible!
        I guess I would agree with Tozer on this point: the Bible is our road map, but not our destination. The destination must be God Himself — we are called to love Him with all of our might, heart and soul. The Bible tells you how to get there, but then you have to go. A dead orthodoxy is not enough — we have to prostrate ourselves before the throne of God. This is why I especially enjoy reading the Puritans — they were good at what was called “experimental divinity” how we actually get to know God, experience His grace in our lives, and live out our faith.
        Well, that was probably more than you bargained for!
        (And no, I don’t go to Marx and Nietzsche for spiritual guidance!, but I try to understand what is going on in the world today.)
        I should mention that currently I am a part of an informal house church fellowship that contains people from a wide variety a backgrounds, including some who were raised Amish and one who has a Plymouth Brethren background. – So we have some interesting discussions — currently we are going through the Book of Revelation.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Eliza says:

          Are you just studying the book of Revelation or are you using a book to help you study the book of Revelation?

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          • Bob Wheeler says:

            We’re just studying the book of Revelation itself — I don’t think we could agree on anyone’s study guide. We take turns giving the messages, and I suppose whoever is preparing may have some commentaries available.

            Like

        • Eliza says:

          Thank you for sharing your history with me, I appreciate it! My history is diametrically opposite of yours. God has always granted me with an overwhelming knowledge of His love for me personally. I am so thankful. I know that I can always trust Him no matter what. He constantly leads me in the way I ought to go and has used many circumstances to bring me to the place I am today where I desire to know Him more deeply and to stay faithful and true to Him. The Lord Jesus Christ has made it abundantly clear that He wants me in His Word, the Bible, period. Since He brought me to make that commitment to Him, I find that He blesses me mightily as I read His Word. I have read it through 10+ times. I know that God is holy and I desire to please Him by being careful in my behavior and choices. I don’t have the church background that you have, but I do have experiential fellowship with the Lord. He is so good to us and I praise His name.

          Like

  16. Eliza says:

    I guess I need to make clear that growing up I was an atheist and then I met Jesus Christ and He transformed me. He made it clear that I was a sinner and that He had taken care of my sin and God’s wrath against me through reading the book of Romans. I don’t want you to have the misconception that I was always a believer; I met Christ at that point in time when He called me, for which I am forever grateful. Praise God for His mercy and grace to us through His Son Jesus Christ.

    Like

    • Bob Wheeler says:

      I did run across your testimony on another blog post — I was especially interested in the fact that your parents were very secular and very messed up personally.
      Were you ever a part of a church somewhere?

      Like

  17. Eliza says:

    Yes, my poor parents were sinners who believed the lies of Satan. Yes.

    Like

    • Bob Wheeler says:

      What struck me is that I think you said your father was a psychologist? And yet his own life was in shambles. I think it is dramatic proof of how utterly bankrupt secular thought is. And, of course, if you think about it, secular psychology claims to be taking a scientific approach to human behavior. But the problem with science is being able to establish any behavioral norms — how can you deduce an “ought” from an “is.” Up until about 50 years ago almost everyone would have agreed that there is something profoundly abnormal and dysfunctional about homosexuality. But then the American Psychiatric Association removed it from its list of diagnoses. Now look at where we are! This is why the Bible says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” Our knowledge and understanding of reality must begin with the will of the Creator.

      Like

      • Eliza says:

        Yes, Bob, that is correct, but sinners are in rebellion to that knowledge and will not bow the knee to God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, so they are left in the dark with Satan as their lord deceived by their own whims and sinful lusts. My father, whom I love, was a psychiatrist. What a sad, sad thing. I remember when I first met Christ Jesus and I realized that all of that psychiatric dogma was untrue, it was like chains being removed from my soul. Praise God through His Son Jesus Christ that we are set free by Him and His truth. Amen!

        Like

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