Archive for the ‘John McArthur’ Category

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MacArthurite Values: Love your Enemies?

August 10, 2007

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MacArthurite Values: Love your Enemies?

August 10, 2007

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Prayer versus the "Truth Wars": Goodbye to Watching the Watchdawgies for Christ

May 2, 2007

Prayer versus the “Truth Wars”: Goodbye to Watching the Watchdawgies for Christ

Recently I attempted to enter into the “Truth Wars” of John MacArthur with a blog that watched thoses who were slandering the emerging church… this is part one.

A lot of prayer and soul searching has caused me to take another look the message of my different Blogs. My first gut feeling response was that I did not want to even do this, yet in me is a fighter, and I veiw that one should stand up against those who abuse others at times and set things right as best we can.

Yet, saying that there is a huge danger of becoming like those who we are hoping to see their error by find we are using the same tools that this world uses, or worse that we justify our actions so that we can feel “good” though we have fallen into the very error we are fighting. This is a narrow path and easy to stray from so Grace, Mercy, humility, and most of all Love must be there to keep us focused on our true calling and that is serving Jesus.

Originally I believed God to be calling out for those in the emerging church movement to ignore the critics and even more so when Johnny Mac declared the “Truth War”. From the start it was clear that the accusations that were thrown out had not merit as most of us responded with, “Who are they talking about?” as they waxed on and on about what the think we think we believe…

To fight or not to fight? Is this “war” of Johnny Mac’s a “Just” war or is it just his? i am seeing more and more it is the latter.

John Wimber who was the head of the Vineyard Church, believed God had told him to never give answer to his critics and for years John did not. Then some very intelligent men begged him to let them give answers and he relented. In a very intellectual way, they did very good in their rebuttals and I reference them here and on my other blog at times. Yet, something changed as my local pastor stated he noticed. Vineyard the gained an unfair reputation of being militant… mostly from the very people who mobilized their attack against Vineyard in the first place.
I see there is a direct correlation between that and now… that we have given in to playing their games… and in some way have lost a bit of ourselves… or at least that is how I feel as of lately dealing with these people.

I think that to expose them has become a waste as they tend to expose themselves as to their theology that justifies hate and judgmentalism. They cry out about homosexuality yet in doing so slander many others in the process… I have come to fully realize to argue with a person with a divisive heart, is futile as that is what feeds their ego and their sick doctrine, the more you fight them and tell them they are in error, the more they gloat as they have made you fall to their level.

I see this as wicked… and that the scripture is clear to have nothing to do with divisive men…

Now, then what to do with this blog?

Here is an email I sent to Russ N who is the other person who has been doing a great job here… I was going to just paraphrase the email but I think I will just post the whole thing as it will speak better as I wrote it from my heart at the time…

Russ,

I first off want to thank you for helping… it has been good to know I have a friend in my corner, even if we have not formally met.

I have doing a LOT of praying and soul searching… and reading of scripture… and as I said from the beginning, I never really wanted to do a blog about Ken or others… I just wanted the lies and slander to stop… and I have a tendency to defend others… to a huge fault at times.

I want you to know I am very seriously thinking of shutting it down… Maybe putting a post to explain what is going on… so these people do not think we are tucking tail and running.

I see other sites that can walk that fine line between becoming like the people one is confronting… and keeping an open ended opportunity to give away Grace and mercy… and I wonder if I am not the right person to do that as I get into the heat of the battle and sometimes lose site of the end goal… reconciliation.

I think in many ways the blog has been very good and exposing some who they really are… and that the real issue is their theology that justifies hate and judgmentalism…. yet, in all that I just get tired of confronting… and wonder if it is worth it? I mean I can expend half the energy and people find Jesus… and I am energized, or I can fight with idiots…. (beloved idiots of God) and be just worn to a frazzle… don’t get me wrong, It is not that I feel the confrontation is wrong, just maybe a waste of time.

Please pray with me… I am pretty set at shutting it down as I have had a scripture run through my head from day one…

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

In some way I feel the blog is a record of wrongs… and though I will never condemn others like CRNinfo… as I see they are doing a great job, I just seem to not have this in me… It feels like this list may as well be my wrongs… and in that I have been forgiven and saved into a new life in Christ, I want to give that away instead of being like Ken Silva who is keep a list of wrongs…. as judged by his own eyes… I think I would rather give room for God to avenge than to avenge myself… I hope that makes sense.

I also was contemplating, (yep that evil purposely reading and think about scripture thing) on Romans 12: 6-21

“We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

That is were I live… and seemed to be missing this last month… I desire to have it back…

If you do not agree with me I understand… if you do I hope that as we pray we will receive wisdom to get things set back…

I am not saying you have been guilty of anything… these are the things on my heart… I have enjoyed your posts and appreciate all you have done…

I do feel guilty a bit in dragging you in all this though (grin) and then sounding so wishy washy here as I may be changing my mind.

Blessings,
iggy


I hope that IF this blog continues, that we will go in a more positive and less confronting way… the jury is still out as to if we will be here in the next week or two… though we will be deleting most of the accusational posts in the next day or so if not sooner.

I appreciate Russ and know he has a post rearing to go as God has been working in and on his heart also… It will be a major blessings that he will share.

My only desire is to serve Christ in a manner that gives Him glory. I do not see that fighting other brothers in Christ a productive way to spend my time as there are many going to hell every minute I spend in an unproductive argument. I mean think about it… if a person is divisive at heart… do you think arguing will change his mind… no… only one thing will and that is prayer…

So, please let us all prayer for each other and for myself and Russ, mostly though for those who have declared “war” and made themselves our enemies… which I have never considered that of them… The Body of Christ has but one enemy and that is Satan… so if Johnny Mac declares “war” on his brothers… OK I will stop, but there is no war here anymore….

There is an Indian Chief named Chief Joseph… and incredible man well educated in both his worlds… as the USA decide to round up all the tribes and put them on reservations, Chief Joseph gathered his people and ran with them… men, women children, old and young sick and well and for a long time kept them out of the hands of the Cavalry who was chasing them… the warriors would do distraction and Joseph would lead the people safely away… this went on for a time and frustrated the US military, that a savage was outsmarting them…

It seemed a victory as Chief Joseph had only about 50 miles to get to Canada… and he was finally caught. Yet, unlike other tribes that went out in a blaze of glory, Joseph saw all his people went through and made a discussion…

His quote sums up my feelings here.

“I am tired of fighting. Our chiefs are killed. Looking Glass is dead. Toohulhulsote is dead. The old men are all dead. It is the young men who say yes or no. He who led the young men is dead. It is cold and we have no blankets. The little children are freezing to death. My people, some of them, have run away to the hills and have no blankets, no food. No one knows where they are–perhaps freezing to death. I want to have time to look for my children and see how many I can find. Maybe I shall find them among the dead. Hear me, my chiefs. I am tired. My heart is sick and sad. From where the sun now stands, I will fight no more forever.”

I am not saying that we lost… but I think that fighting only leads to more loss on our side… no matter how many we ever “take down” (I mean that only in correction grin) there will be another… and another… and so on… in fact I think Falwell is taking a stand against Calvinists as we speak… so there is a war… and I will let the fundamentalist fight it out amongst themselves… I think I would rather focus on my people and bring those that have been harmed back to health and search for the lost lambs to bring them to the Great Shepherd. I only thank God that this is not like the original reformation where then did kill those they deem heretics.

Blessings,
iggy

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Prayer versus the "Truth Wars": Goodbye to Watching the Watchdawgies for Christ

May 2, 2007

Prayer versus the “Truth Wars”: Goodbye to Watching the Watchdawgies for Christ

Recently I attempted to enter into the “Truth Wars” of John MacArthur with a blog that watched thoses who were slandering the emerging church… this is part one.

A lot of prayer and soul searching has caused me to take another look the message of my different Blogs. My first gut feeling response was that I did not want to even do this, yet in me is a fighter, and I veiw that one should stand up against those who abuse others at times and set things right as best we can.

Yet, saying that there is a huge danger of becoming like those who we are hoping to see their error by find we are using the same tools that this world uses, or worse that we justify our actions so that we can feel “good” though we have fallen into the very error we are fighting. This is a narrow path and easy to stray from so Grace, Mercy, humility, and most of all Love must be there to keep us focused on our true calling and that is serving Jesus.

Originally I believed God to be calling out for those in the emerging church movement to ignore the critics and even more so when Johnny Mac declared the “Truth War”. From the start it was clear that the accusations that were thrown out had not merit as most of us responded with, “Who are they talking about?” as they waxed on and on about what the think we think we believe…

To fight or not to fight? Is this “war” of Johnny Mac’s a “Just” war or is it just his? i am seeing more and more it is the latter.

John Wimber who was the head of the Vineyard Church, believed God had told him to never give answer to his critics and for years John did not. Then some very intelligent men begged him to let them give answers and he relented. In a very intellectual way, they did very good in their rebuttals and I reference them here and on my other blog at times. Yet, something changed as my local pastor stated he noticed. Vineyard the gained an unfair reputation of being militant… mostly from the very people who mobilized their attack against Vineyard in the first place.
I see there is a direct correlation between that and now… that we have given in to playing their games… and in some way have lost a bit of ourselves… or at least that is how I feel as of lately dealing with these people.

I think that to expose them has become a waste as they tend to expose themselves as to their theology that justifies hate and judgmentalism. They cry out about homosexuality yet in doing so slander many others in the process… I have come to fully realize to argue with a person with a divisive heart, is futile as that is what feeds their ego and their sick doctrine, the more you fight them and tell them they are in error, the more they gloat as they have made you fall to their level.

I see this as wicked… and that the scripture is clear to have nothing to do with divisive men…

Now, then what to do with this blog?

Here is an email I sent to Russ N who is the other person who has been doing a great job here… I was going to just paraphrase the email but I think I will just post the whole thing as it will speak better as I wrote it from my heart at the time…

Russ,

I first off want to thank you for helping… it has been good to know I have a friend in my corner, even if we have not formally met.

I have doing a LOT of praying and soul searching… and reading of scripture… and as I said from the beginning, I never really wanted to do a blog about Ken or others… I just wanted the lies and slander to stop… and I have a tendency to defend others… to a huge fault at times.

I want you to know I am very seriously thinking of shutting it down… Maybe putting a post to explain what is going on… so these people do not think we are tucking tail and running.

I see other sites that can walk that fine line between becoming like the people one is confronting… and keeping an open ended opportunity to give away Grace and mercy… and I wonder if I am not the right person to do that as I get into the heat of the battle and sometimes lose site of the end goal… reconciliation.

I think in many ways the blog has been very good and exposing some who they really are… and that the real issue is their theology that justifies hate and judgmentalism…. yet, in all that I just get tired of confronting… and wonder if it is worth it? I mean I can expend half the energy and people find Jesus… and I am energized, or I can fight with idiots…. (beloved idiots of God) and be just worn to a frazzle… don’t get me wrong, It is not that I feel the confrontation is wrong, just maybe a waste of time.

Please pray with me… I am pretty set at shutting it down as I have had a scripture run through my head from day one…

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

In some way I feel the blog is a record of wrongs… and though I will never condemn others like CRNinfo… as I see they are doing a great job, I just seem to not have this in me… It feels like this list may as well be my wrongs… and in that I have been forgiven and saved into a new life in Christ, I want to give that away instead of being like Ken Silva who is keep a list of wrongs…. as judged by his own eyes… I think I would rather give room for God to avenge than to avenge myself… I hope that makes sense.

I also was contemplating, (yep that evil purposely reading and think about scripture thing) on Romans 12: 6-21

“We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

That is were I live… and seemed to be missing this last month… I desire to have it back…

If you do not agree with me I understand… if you do I hope that as we pray we will receive wisdom to get things set back…

I am not saying you have been guilty of anything… these are the things on my heart… I have enjoyed your posts and appreciate all you have done…

I do feel guilty a bit in dragging you in all this though (grin) and then sounding so wishy washy here as I may be changing my mind.

Blessings,
iggy


I hope that IF this blog continues, that we will go in a more positive and less confronting way… the jury is still out as to if we will be here in the next week or two… though we will be deleting most of the accusational posts in the next day or so if not sooner.

I appreciate Russ and know he has a post rearing to go as God has been working in and on his heart also… It will be a major blessings that he will share.

My only desire is to serve Christ in a manner that gives Him glory. I do not see that fighting other brothers in Christ a productive way to spend my time as there are many going to hell every minute I spend in an unproductive argument. I mean think about it… if a person is divisive at heart… do you think arguing will change his mind… no… only one thing will and that is prayer…

So, please let us all prayer for each other and for myself and Russ, mostly though for those who have declared “war” and made themselves our enemies… which I have never considered that of them… The Body of Christ has but one enemy and that is Satan… so if Johnny Mac declares “war” on his brothers… OK I will stop, but there is no war here anymore….

There is an Indian Chief named Chief Joseph… and incredible man well educated in both his worlds… as the USA decide to round up all the tribes and put them on reservations, Chief Joseph gathered his people and ran with them… men, women children, old and young sick and well and for a long time kept them out of the hands of the Cavalry who was chasing them… the warriors would do distraction and Joseph would lead the people safely away… this went on for a time and frustrated the US military, that a savage was outsmarting them…

It seemed a victory as Chief Joseph had only about 50 miles to get to Canada… and he was finally caught. Yet, unlike other tribes that went out in a blaze of glory, Joseph saw all his people went through and made a discussion…

His quote sums up my feelings here.

“I am tired of fighting. Our chiefs are killed. Looking Glass is dead. Toohulhulsote is dead. The old men are all dead. It is the young men who say yes or no. He who led the young men is dead. It is cold and we have no blankets. The little children are freezing to death. My people, some of them, have run away to the hills and have no blankets, no food. No one knows where they are–perhaps freezing to death. I want to have time to look for my children and see how many I can find. Maybe I shall find them among the dead. Hear me, my chiefs. I am tired. My heart is sick and sad. From where the sun now stands, I will fight no more forever.”

I am not saying that we lost… but I think that fighting only leads to more loss on our side… no matter how many we ever “take down” (I mean that only in correction grin) there will be another… and another… and so on… in fact I think Falwell is taking a stand against Calvinists as we speak… so there is a war… and I will let the fundamentalist fight it out amongst themselves… I think I would rather focus on my people and bring those that have been harmed back to health and search for the lost lambs to bring them to the Great Shepherd. I only thank God that this is not like the original reformation where then did kill those they deem heretics.

Blessings,
iggy

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Obedience of Faith… (Lordship Salvation?)

March 15, 2007

Obedience of Faith…

In the Book of Daniel (Chapter 9) we are told that the Mashiach which is transliterated into Greek as Christ, will come… both of these mean “Anointed One”. If one even reads a superficial reading of the OT they will find the one’s that are anointed were kings… Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords… He is God incarnate, the Creator and Living Word of God…

To demand one must accept Him as “Lord” of their life lowers Who He actually is! We have no life to give Jesus, that is a misnomer. It misses the very point we are DEAD in our sins… and a dead person is not regenerated until they receive LIFE… and that is the Life of Christ or the Holy Spirit… John is teaching that one must receive the Holy Spirit before they can receive the Holy Spirit… which is nonsense.

The washing of regeneration happens when one receives Jesus… not before… Titus 3:5

A simple reading of Titus shows this out…

Titus 3: 4-7

“But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Notice “He saved us” it is repeated twice… It is by His mercy we are saved… BY the washing of regeneration… regeneration is not before… but at the time of salvation… why? We are renewed by the Holy Spirit…

John MacArthur and many Calvinists teach that regeneration comes before the Holy Spirit is received and that is impossible as one must have the Holy Spirit to be regenerated! One must receive Life and be raised from our own death into the Life of Christ to be saved! Then we are regenerated by the very life of Christ… or by the Spirit Who is Life… One must be dead, buried and resurrected “in Christ” to be regenerated by Christ.

This summed up clearly by verse 7: That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

We are first justified by His Grace then made heirs as we have the hope now of eternal life. As we turn in Faith which is a gift of God, we express this by our hope that we are justified and now have eternal Life…

To turn this around make no sense… and demands that a person must be saved to get saved… and that is nonsensical… and that negates the Blood of Jesus.

Now here is the major flaw in the Lordship debate. Faith and obedience are connected… yet not in the way John MacArthur is stating… in fact the way John and many other understand obedience turns obedience into “works righteousness”.

We all agree with the Apostles and Peter and that “We ought to obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29) Yet many as I said do not understand what that obedience is… We are called to the “obedience of Christ” and in that way take all thoughts captive. (2 Cor 10:5) Yet, few notice it is “of Christ” from where the obedience comes… if it being “of Christ” then it is not “of us”… or from our own works…

Romans 5:19 really hit me one day. “

“For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one (Jesus) shall many be made righteous.” (I added Jesus for clarity as in the context it is understood.)

Because Adam sinned, we died, for we were inside Adam’s loins as we are all descendents of Adam.

This is a bit hard for some to grasp, yet it is what the writer of Hebrews uses to explain about why the Priesthood of Melchizedek was greater than the Priesthood of Levi, for Abraham gave tithe to Melchizedek which was giving honor, and Levi was still in the loins of Abraham. (One must think a bit like a Rabbi here to understand the logic – Hebrews 7)

We who are in Christ are born of the man of heaven. 1 Cor 15: 45 – 49 states:

“So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven.”

In Christ we are born of the Spirit… in that we are made righteous by the One man’s (Jesus) obedience… we walk in His obedience and not our own…

God had kept this all a mystery. Yet, now God has opened to all nations the obedience of faith through Jesus Christ. (Romans 16:25-27)

Faith is a gift… (Ephesians 2:8) It is also trusting that God is faithful to His Word and will do as He promised. We walk in “faith” and not by sight. Many think that walking in faith is doing good works… but there are no good works aside from the works God has prepared for us to do… to think we can do works whether to “prove our salvation”, earn “brownie points” with God, or even become more “sanctified” misses the point completely. We are saved by Grace through faith and sustained by Grace through faith… nothing is of us, all is of God. In the book of Galatians 3:3 Paul asks a question. “After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?” We would be wise to consider the answer… if we say yes, then we are saying we “sanctify ourselves” if we say no, they we say it is God who sanctifies us. It is the Holy Spirit that sanctifies us… as 1 Peter states “through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.” The “works” are God’s by His Spirit… and it is the Holy Spirit that sanctifies us. (1 Thessalonians 5: 23) for we are told in 2 Thessalonians 2: 13, “because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.”

God sustains us. Some might think this is a Armenian versus Calvinist argument… to me it is not… it is a Calvinist vs. the Bible debate. Now saying that I will add that I am not a “Calvinist hater” I am not saying a Calvinist is not saved (confused maybe on some important issues) but I would never say we must separate over differences in our doctrine. Man is a flawed and finite creature. We easily can fall sway to “man’s” teachings… be it “free grace”, “Lordship salvation”, “Works righteousness”. I am also not saying at all I have all the answers, yet I will say I am sharing out of years of bondage under “works” and have lived years “under grace”. No one has ever been “free”. We have “free will” yet when we were not in Christ, we were slaves to sin, and if now one is in Christ we are a slave to righteousness… I pray whatever tradition you have chosen that you will chose to walk in the faith God has given you. (Rom 6)

We are to walk as Jesus walked… and in that as 2 John 1 states:

“And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.”

If we are “in Jesus” as He is in the Father, we are immersed in Love… for “God is Love”. (1 john 4:8)

One can accept Jesus as Lord, yet the real issue is that is not even enough… for one who has come to a relationship with Jesus must at some time realize that Jesus is one’s very LIFE. “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” (1 Philippians 1:21)

For it is by His Grace we even come to eternal Life.

Blessings,
iggy


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h1

Obedience of Faith… (Lordship Salvation?)

March 15, 2007

Obedience of Faith…

In the Book of Daniel (Chapter 9) we are told that the Mashiach which is transliterated into Greek as Christ, will come… both of these mean “Anointed One”. If one even reads a superficial reading of the OT they will find the one’s that are anointed were kings… Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords… He is God incarnate, the Creator and Living Word of God…

To demand one must accept Him as “Lord” of their life lowers Who He actually is! We have no life to give Jesus, that is a misnomer. It misses the very point we are DEAD in our sins… and a dead person is not regenerated until they receive LIFE… and that is the Life of Christ or the Holy Spirit… John is teaching that one must receive the Holy Spirit before they can receive the Holy Spirit… which is nonsense.

The washing of regeneration happens when one receives Jesus… not before… Titus 3:5

A simple reading of Titus shows this out…

Titus 3: 4-7

“But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Notice “He saved us” it is repeated twice… It is by His mercy we are saved… BY the washing of regeneration… regeneration is not before… but at the time of salvation… why? We are renewed by the Holy Spirit…

John MacArthur and many Calvinists teach that regeneration comes before the Holy Spirit is received and that is impossible as one must have the Holy Spirit to be regenerated! One must receive Life and be raised from our own death into the Life of Christ to be saved! Then we are regenerated by the very life of Christ… or by the Spirit Who is Life… One must be dead, buried and resurrected “in Christ” to be regenerated by Christ.

This summed up clearly by verse 7: That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

We are first justified by His Grace then made heirs as we have the hope now of eternal life. As we turn in Faith which is a gift of God, we express this by our hope that we are justified and now have eternal Life…

To turn this around make no sense… and demands that a person must be saved to get saved… and that is nonsensical… and that negates the Blood of Jesus.

Now here is the major flaw in the Lordship debate. Faith and obedience are connected… yet not in the way John MacArthur is stating… in fact the way John and many other understand obedience turns obedience into “works righteousness”.

We all agree with the Apostles and Peter and that “We ought to obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29) Yet many as I said do not understand what that obedience is… We are called to the “obedience of Christ” and in that way take all thoughts captive. (2 Cor 10:5) Yet, few notice it is “of Christ” from where the obedience comes… if it being “of Christ” then it is not “of us”… or from our own works…

Romans 5:19 really hit me one day. “

“For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one (Jesus) shall many be made righteous.” (I added Jesus for clarity as in the context it is understood.)

Because Adam sinned, we died, for we were inside Adam’s loins as we are all descendents of Adam.

This is a bit hard for some to grasp, yet it is what the writer of Hebrews uses to explain about why the Priesthood of Melchizedek was greater than the Priesthood of Levi, for Abraham gave tithe to Melchizedek which was giving honor, and Levi was still in the loins of Abraham. (One must think a bit like a Rabbi here to understand the logic – Hebrews 7)

We who are in Christ are born of the man of heaven. 1 Cor 15: 45 – 49 states:

“So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven.”

In Christ we are born of the Spirit… in that we are made righteous by the One man’s (Jesus) obedience… we walk in His obedience and not our own…

God had kept this all a mystery. Yet, now God has opened to all nations the obedience of faith through Jesus Christ. (Romans 16:25-27)

Faith is a gift… (Ephesians 2:8) It is also trusting that God is faithful to His Word and will do as He promised. We walk in “faith” and not by sight. Many think that walking in faith is doing good works… but there are no good works aside from the works God has prepared for us to do… to think we can do works whether to “prove our salvation”, earn “brownie points” with God, or even become more “sanctified” misses the point completely. We are saved by Grace through faith and sustained by Grace through faith… nothing is of us, all is of God. In the book of Galatians 3:3 Paul asks a question. “After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?” We would be wise to consider the answer… if we say yes, then we are saying we “sanctify ourselves” if we say no, they we say it is God who sanctifies us. It is the Holy Spirit that sanctifies us… as 1 Peter states “through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.” The “works” are God’s by His Spirit… and it is the Holy Spirit that sanctifies us. (1 Thessalonians 5: 23) for we are told in 2 Thessalonians 2: 13, “because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.”

God sustains us. Some might think this is a Armenian versus Calvinist argument… to me it is not… it is a Calvinist vs. the Bible debate. Now saying that I will add that I am not a “Calvinist hater” I am not saying a Calvinist is not saved (confused maybe on some important issues) but I would never say we must separate over differences in our doctrine. Man is a flawed and finite creature. We easily can fall sway to “man’s” teachings… be it “free grace”, “Lordship salvation”, “Works righteousness”. I am also not saying at all I have all the answers, yet I will say I am sharing out of years of bondage under “works” and have lived years “under grace”. No one has ever been “free”. We have “free will” yet when we were not in Christ, we were slaves to sin, and if now one is in Christ we are a slave to righteousness… I pray whatever tradition you have chosen that you will chose to walk in the faith God has given you. (Rom 6)

We are to walk as Jesus walked… and in that as 2 John 1 states:

“And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.”

If we are “in Jesus” as He is in the Father, we are immersed in Love… for “God is Love”. (1 john 4:8)

One can accept Jesus as Lord, yet the real issue is that is not even enough… for one who has come to a relationship with Jesus must at some time realize that Jesus is one’s very LIFE. “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” (1 Philippians 1:21)

For it is by His Grace we even come to eternal Life.

Blessings,
iggy


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Regeneration does not precede faith…

March 12, 2007

Regeneration does not precede faith…

He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. -Titus 3:5-7

How can it?

Once one actually notices the context of Titus 3:5-7 one should notice that one must be saved first to be regenerated… notice the first three words of the paragraph.

“He saved us.”

This is written to those who are already saved, not to those who need to get saved.
To say one must have a regenerate mind to receive the salvation gets things so out of whack… it is saying one must somehow get saved… before getting saved!

This is a teaching widely spread and is accepted. Yet, if one bothered to read the passage one might actually see the great salvation of our Great God!

We are saved by Grace…

By Faith…

Not of works…

It is Faith that is a gift… given to us that enables us to turn, we still must come to Christ and be regenerated as we must first receive the Holy Spirit to be regenerated by the Holy Spirit. If one has not yet been filled by the Holy Spirit then how can they be regenerated? Only after one come to Christ Jesus will they be regenerated and renewed by the Holy Spirit.

Note also these same people often teach of the wrath of God at the expense of God’s great grace… yet in the verses just before Titus 3:5-7 it is stated in verses 1 -4:

“Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,”

We are to be ready to do good works… to speak evil of no man… and to live after the kindness and love of God our Saviour. It is God’s kindness that leads us to repentance… not His wrath nor regeneration.

We cannot be regenerated of our spirit if one has not yet received the Holy Spirit Who does the work or regeneration. That is why man must acknowledge his sin nature and turn to God for salvation. Until that takes place and pride is removed… only when man humbly bends his knee and cries out “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” The God will now act upon the faith He gave for one to cry out for deliverance… only then will He deliver and give New Life… only then can man enter in through the Kindness of God’s Merciful Grace… only then will man be given the Spirit of Life that is the regeneration of our Spirit, only then by Grace do we then mover forward to conform to the Image of Jesus… only then do we be transformed by the renewing of our mind…

To say one is regenerate before salvation is heresy upon heresy as it negates the Blood of Jesus. For what value then is it if man is regenerate with out the washing of the Blood of our sins?

Again, some appeal to Augustine, Martin Luther, John Calvin all mighty men of God in their way… but even men of great knowledge fall prey to prove their doctrine at the expense of what the bible actually teaches. Salvation is a process and it seems some teach that regeneration can come before the process even begins.

Pray we do not fall victim this error… and lead someone to receiving the Holy Spirit before they have even turned to God. That would be just foolishness. The Spirit woos but has yet to indwell… and then we are regenerated by Him.

Faith is the gift to see in a moment our sin, and to also see the kindness of God in Christ Jesus… it is then at that moment we receive the gift of Faith by Grace… It is trusting at that moment that even though we cannot see who we are to be, we still trust that God will be faithful to do it, and after that regeneration begins. Regeneration is coming into New Life in Christ… one cannot come into that Life before they come into His Life… It is again nonsensical.

Faith is more about God’s faithfulness to us than what some call our own faith. Salvation is offered by Grace. In that we respond to knowledge that God has done all for us at the Cross by His Blood… and in His death and Resurrection. We must accept that we do nothing except fall at His feet to be saved. For, just as Jesus must be our very Life… He is our only Salvation. The just shall live by faith… we are justified at the Cross and saved by His Blood, and Live by His Life giving Spirit.

So, again, all one needs to do is read three little words that sum up the issue… “He saved us”.

Blessings,
iggy


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