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  • The Gospel of Jesus Christ

    Heard of "The Gospel"? Want to know more?

    There is salvation in no other, for there is not another name under heaven having been given among men, by which it behooves us to be saved."

The Good News/The Bad News

wondering

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Because of your righteousness (libertarian "free will' faith) you opened the gift and became God's son. Believing in God is something to be proud of if your faith is self-generated, as this righteous act is the key to eternal bliss that few attain.

Is it less proudful for a reformed person to believe that, of all persons on earth, God chose HIM to be saved?
I'd say the reformed have more to be boastful of than the rest of Christians.

On a few occasions I've heard Macarthur and Piper proclaim that they (the congregation) are to be humble about their salvation
......it must mean that some of them are not.

I've never heard pastors/preachers of other beliefs make this statement...I would think because it is not necessary.

The guy beside you opened the gift and went to hell.
Besides, it more that just opening a gift to see what is inside. You have to believe something inside is there or you won't get it; what's worse is that your (our) depravity won't let you believe that such a thing is inside unless God intervenes.
Romans 3:11 No one understands [divine things]; no one seeks for God. (won't believe what's in the box/gift)
1 Corinthians 2:14 The natural [unregenerate] person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God (won't believe what's in the box/gift) [regeneration comes from the Spirit of God], for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually [the Holy Spirit] discerned.
John 3:20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light (won't believe what's in the box/gift)

Not everyone opens the gift.
God offers the gift to all men.....
Some men accept the gift, and some men will not.

Mark 16:6
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.



Whoever....means any man that will.
Otherwise it would have said: "All those that believe and are baptized....."
(and a case could STILL be made for offering salvation to all men just based on God's character)


Premise 1: Definition of work: ... activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result. (see dictionary, the authority of the English language).
Premise 2: One must believe (mental process) in order to be saved (purpose).
Premise 3: The origin of faith is man.
Conclusion: If the cause of belief is yourself, then it is your work. It is something God has commanded you to do. It is obedience (a work)
Aside: Obedience is still a work if God is the cause, but I assume the question is with the assumption that man is the cause of his own faith.

Perhaps you should NOT use a dictionary.......
Perhaps you should concentrate on using the bible.....

Faith is NOT A WORK.
The N.T. makes this very clear.

It is what Paul spoke about and explained many times over.
All his epistles speak about how we are NOT UNDER THE LAW.
How we are NOT SAVED BY WORKS.
Especially Romans, explains very well how FAITH is NOT A WORK.

Ephesians 2:8-9
8For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.


Romans 11:6
But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace.



John 6:29 Jesus answered, “This is the work of God: that you believe [adhere to, trust in, rely on, and have faith] in the One whom He has sent.” Clearly this verse defines “faith” as a work. Thus faith must originate from God since God’s grace does not include man works (Galatians 5:2).
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the [only] Way [to God] and the [real] Truth and the [real] Life; no one comes to the Father but through Me… and that, by positive assertion, so that whatever is not Christ is not the way but error.
Titus 3:5 he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior Faith is a work of righteousness, thus its source cannot be man.
Works are not demanded, whereby the creature might ascribe anything to himself; a condition, whereby mercy is owned


IMO
In John 6:29 Jesus was speaking to a crowd that included many unbelievers.
Jesus tells them that they sought Him only because He fed them with bread, literally.
He tells them not to work for the things of this world which will pass, but to work for the
food that will give eternal life. And that HE, the Son, will give them this food.
Again, we are faced with Jesus telling a crowd that each one could be saved individually.
Jesus even states that this is why the Father sent Him....
God's eternal plan of salvation.

The WORK OF GOD in this verse is the will of God....
The will of God is that we believe in His Son.
God DOES NOT WORK.

See also 1 John 3:23
 

wondering

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i know several who are matthew henry fans and they aint reformed.. he losses me i am clarke or mcgee
His writing is very poetic and devotional in style.
I like it for that reason.
Also, if I'm going to use a commentary, I use a few...
see what the different views are.
 

wondering

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Hopeful

The Philippian jailer asked Paul and Silas when they were released from prison, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied: "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Ac 16:30-31 NASB).
No where in the verse does it say if man is the cause of faith or God. Thus explicit verses should be sought.

Verses like:
John 1:12 But to as many as did receive and welcome Him, He gave the authority (power, privilege, right) to become the children of God, that is, to those who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) His name— 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh [the flesh is carnal and flesh always lusteth against the Spirit], nor of the will of man, but of GOD.


What does Romans 4:5-6 (NASB) state about faith as to whether it is a work? "But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness, 6 just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works."
This is true. But what is the reason it is not a work. It is not a work of man, but of God.
John 6:29 Jesus answered, “This is the work of God: that you believe [adhere to, trust in, rely on, and have faith] in the One whom He has sent.” Clearly this verse defines faith as a work. Thus faith must originate from God since God’s grace does not include man works (Galatians 5:2).

Work: activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result.
"he was tired after a day's work"
Work: a task or tasks to be undertaken; something a person or thing has to do.
Work: to exert oneself physically or mentally especially in sustained effort for a purpose or under compulsion or necessity
Work: to produce a desired effect or result : succeed
Work: exertion or effort directed to produce or accomplish something; labor; toil.

Faith by definition is a work. The question is, who's doing the WORK.

Aside: Bedtime for bozo (moi)
Where's Hospes ... this is his baby ... lol
"BELIEVE IN THE LORD JESUS AND YOU WILL BE SAVED..."

BELIEVE in the above sentence is a command...
 

OzSpen

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Oz,
I don't know enough about Arminian concepts.
I should find out,,,,since I keep getting labeled one.

Arminius did not believe a person was born totally depraved and had the capacity to reach out for God.
I know that he agreed with Calvin on most theology, but I can't remember what.

I should do a little study on this.
I THINK that semi-pelagians are more the opposite of Calvinists than Arminians...
but the reformed do compare themselves to Arminius as the opposite theological pardigm.
Maybe we should have a thread on this?
I wish I had more time....

wondering,

Before we get to Jacob Arminius, you may be interested in this article:
"Why Theological Study is for Everyone".

If you want an Arminian POV, I recommend you go to the Society of Evangelical Arminians website. I'm considering becoming a member because I'm a leaky Reformed/Classical Arminian, following many of the teachings of Arminius, except I'm committed to believers' and not infant baptism

Arminius did believe in total depravity. See my article: Do Arminians believe in election and total depravity?

I was really stirred up when my Calvinistic pastor preached that Arminius did not believe in total depravity. After the service I challenged him, asking where he had learned that about Arminius's theology. His response was from his Reformed College professors. He had not read Arminius on the subject, so told a lie from the pulpit.

From your many posts I have read, I've concluded you are in the Arminian camp and are not a semi-Pelagian. Too many Calvinists identify Arminianism with semi-Pelagianism. Here is an article that may help you identify your theology: Survey: Are You an Arminian and Don’t Even Know It?

Oz
 
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JLB

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Postulate: God is the cause of your faith
  1. If one believes there is a gift inside [because God caused him to believe] but doesn’t put forth the effort to open it,

I may be wrong in my assessment of your position, but it seems that you are saying believing and faith are the same, nothing could be further from the truth.


Faith is a noun and comes to us when God speaks to us, whether directly as in Genesis 12, or indirectly through those He sends to preach the Gospel.


Believe on the other hand is a verb and is what we must to do in response to the Gospel message. Believe carries the idea of obey, which is why we se some passages say believe the Gospel, while others say obey the Gospel.


Do we agree on this or disagree?



JLB
 

JLB

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There is a problem with this statement as it relies upon a false premise: that the cause of faith is the individual.

Not true.

The cause of faith is God. Faith is what we receive from God when He speaks to us. See Hebrews 11.


However, what causes faith to be activated, and be complete and able to produce the intended divine result is believing and therefore obeying; the obedience of faith.


When faith comes to us from God, because we hear Him speak to us, it is dormant and incomplete and must be activated or made alive by our obedience, our corresponding action of obedience.


Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? James 2:21-22


Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar?

  • by works faith was made perfect?

Perfect here means complete.


The work that James is referring to is obedience to the word from God, by which Abraham received faith, which was to offer his son Isaac on the altar.



Do we agree or disagree?



JLB
 

Fastfredy0

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I may be wrong in my assessment of your position, but it seems that you are saying believing and faith are the same, nothing could be further from the truth.
According to https://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionaries/bakers-evangelical-dictionary/belief-believe.html ... belief/believe is the same as faith per the first bible dictionary I looked up.
Belief, Believe -Baker's Bible Dictionary .png
Google dictionary definition of FAITH - strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

Faith is a noun and comes to us when God speaks to us, whether directly as in Genesis 12, or indirectly through those He sends to preach the Gospel.


Believe on the other hand is a verb and is what we must to do in response to the Gospel message. Believe carries the idea of obey, which is why we se some passages say believe the Gospel, while others say obey the Gospel.
Agreed, "Faith" is a noun, "belief" is a noun and "believing" is a verb.
Agreed, "Faith" cometh by hearing (not all the time, but that is a prerequisite)

We may be getting lost in the fine minutiae. You give aspects of the words "Faith" and "believe", but you don't give definitions.
Apparently you want to define 'believe' and 'believing' as obeying. I use those words usually to describe salvific faith which is in agreement with a bible dictionary quoted above.

Here are my definitions.

Salvific Faith/Belief consists of three components: Knowledge (intellectual), Agreement (emotional) and Trust (volitional).
I must believe in some content (knowledge), (agreement) that the knowledge is true, and Trust in the gospel.

Regarding the 3rd component of FAITH which is TRUST. TRUST will cause a Christian to be obedient (the effect) to God's will, although imperfectly. We are not saved by this obedience (that would be a work), but it will be evident. Contrarily, if there is little obedience then this is a sign one does not have FAITH/BELIEF.
Our obedience is the result of the Spirit (the Spirit is the cause, our obedience is the effect). I think you are calling this aspect of Faith that I call the result of TRUST by the word "believing". If this is what you meaning by "believing", I'm good with that.

Aside: I think we are talking past each other.
 

Fastfredy0

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The cause of faith is God. Faith is what we receive from God when He speaks to us. See Hebrews 11.
Agreed.

However, what causes faith to be activated, and be complete and able to produce the intended divine result is believing and therefore obeying; the obedience of faith.
Agreed. Compatibilism. The cause of our faith is God (your first statement). The effect is we believe ... we agree to the gospel message and the result is imperfect obedience.

When faith comes to us from God, because we hear Him speak to us, it is dormant and incomplete and must be activated or made alive by our obedience, our corresponding action of obedience.
Hmmm, you must have a different definition of FAITH that I. You are saying we can have FAITH and go to hell because we haven't done the work of obedience. (IMO)
We are save by FAITH ALONE. IF God gives you Faith, you WILL BE SAVED. Your statement contradicts this premise.
We are save the moment we first believe. Faith may increase with time, but salvation occurs when one believes/has salvific faith.
Aside: I never heard a Christian say someone can have FAITH and not be saved. Interesting, one with faith could be in hell assuming one doesn't "activate" this faith and dies. I never heard the concept of activating FAITH by works either.



Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? James 2:21-22
No, this is an improper understanding of James. James is talking of a man being justified in the eye of other men and not God. It would be an interesting thread to investigate this further. I struggled with James for a while. (From your perspective, I still do .. lol)


  • by works faith was made perfect?

Perfect here means complete.
Hmmm... not sure on that ... almost bedtime.


The work that James is referring to is obedience to the word from God, by which Abraham received faith, which was to offer his son Isaac on the altar.



Do we agree or disagree?
No .... Abraham was saved years before the sacrifice of Isaac by his faith and not during Isaac's sacrifice. I don't think anyone will agree with you on this point.

Wife calling .. no time to proof read.
 

Hospes

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How does one command love???
Ask Jesus:

Mark 12:28–31 (ESV)
And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
John 15:12 (ESV)
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
1 John 3:23 (ESV)
And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.
2 John 5 (ESV)
And now I ask you, dear lady—not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another.

(I guess that last one was from the Apostle John.)
 

Hopeful

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The faith is yours, the cause is Gods.

Example:
You have no faith that I can high jump over 7 feet. I jump over 7 feet. You now believe. The faith is yours, the cause is me.

Law of Causality: Every effect has a cause.

Your faith is an EFFECT and must have a CAUSE. You may argue that the cause is "libertarian free will" or God changing your mind. In either case, the faith is yours but the cause it something else. (Which leaves the question ... if your faith is "libertarian free will" where did that come from, the ether? .... remember "libertarian free will" is the ability to do "A" or "B" in the same circumstances (indifference).
If I have the same "causer" as the damned have, why don't they believe like I do?
They had the choice to believe as I did...didn't they?
The "cause" is available to all men, but it is up to us to believe, repent of sin, get baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for remission of past sins, and endure till the end.
 
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JLB

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Hmmm, you must have a different definition of FAITH that I. You are saying we can have FAITH and go to hell because we haven't done the work of obedience.

That’s correct. Dead faith can not save.


Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
James 2:17


Faith “alone” is a misconception. Faith must have the corresponding action of obedience in order for faith to be complete, otherwise faith remains incomplete as a body without a spirit is incomplete, and is lifeless.




JLB
 

JLB

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No, this is an improper understanding of James. James is talking of a man being justified in the eye of other men and not God.

Sorry but God is the one who justifies, not other men.


Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? James 2:21


Paul teaches the same thing throughout the book of Romans.


Here is one example of Jesus teaching this principle.


And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. For she said to herself, “If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.” But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And the woman was made well from that hour.
Matthew 9:20-22


  • a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment.

The faith in her heart inspired her to say... If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.

When she acted in obedience to move through the crowds and touch the hem of His garment, despite her fear, her faith was activated to produce the intended result of healing her body of the issue of blood.


  • “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.”




JLB
 

Hospes

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That’s correct. Dead faith can not save.

Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
James 2:17

Faith “alone” is a misconception. Faith must have the corresponding action of obedience in order for faith to be complete, otherwise faith remains incomplete as a body without a spirit is incomplete, and is lifeless.
We can agree there is, at least in James' thinking, some category of faith called "dead faith" and it is not of any use for salvation. Can we assume there is a type of faith that may be called "live faith"?

Is there anything in the Bible that is not consistent with obedience being the result of "live" faith? Kind of like an internal temperature of above 98 degF and breathing are results of a human body being alive?

I can take a dead body and artificially make it have a temperature of 98.6 degF and using a ventilator I can cause it to breathe, but that does not make the body alive. In the same way, you can, by force of one's will, produce obedience and yet still be dead in one's sins.

The way you talk of obedience giving faith life is akin to me claiming my heating up a dead body and putting it on a ventilator gives the body life.
 

wondering

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Ask Jesus:

Mark 12:28–31 (ESV)
And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
John 15:12 (ESV)
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
1 John 3:23 (ESV)
And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.
2 John 5 (ESV)
And now I ask you, dear lady—not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another.

(I guess that last one was from the Apostle John.)
Of course I knew you'd bring this up.
But I hate to jump ahead.

We are to love everyone.....that would be agape love....
a love that comes from God that we are to share with the world.
I love my neighbor -- but not like I love my son.

The love I was referring to, which cannot be commanded, is the love your wife has for YOU, for example.
You cannot command this type of love.

Jesus meant to protect our neighbor and help when possible and take care of them.
I direct you to the Good Samaritan.

The Samaritan loved the person hurt like we are to love.
He did not love him like you love your wife or a son of yours.

Jesus also said to hate your mother and your father.
Did he mean to really hate them?

If so, then it would conflict with the message of love.
There is no conflict in what Jesus taught.

We were discussing faith...

FAITH IS NOT A WORK.




**************************************************************************************************

This is from my post no. 244:
......

Faith is NOT A WORK.
The N.T. makes this very clear.

It is what Paul spoke about and explained many times over.
All his epistles speak about how we are NOT UNDER THE LAW.
How we are NOT SAVED BY WORKS.
Especially Romans, explains very well how FAITH is NOT A WORK.

Ephesians 2:8-9
8For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.


Romans 11:6
But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace.
 
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