Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Second Sunday in Lent.

The Collect

ALMIGHTY God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Collect from the First Day of Lent is to be read every day in Lent after the Collect appointed for the Day.

Daily Bible Verse

Monday, November 28, 2011

Witnessing to an Arminian

The following discussion took place in FaceBook messaging.  I will only use the first name to preserve the privacy of the lady in question:

Sue, did your Jesus die on the cross for those who were already in hell?  Did he die on the cross for all of those who would go to hell after he hung there for the sins of the whole world?  If so, then the Jesus you believe in is not the same Jesus of the Bible.  The Jesus who is revealed in the Bible died to save His people from their sins.  (Matthew 1:21).  He died only for His sheep (John 10:11, 15) and not one of them will be lost:

 but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. (John 10:26-29 ESV)

Anyone can claim to be a Christian.  But if that person does not believe in the right Jesus--not a Jesus of their own making--they are lost.  The liberals believe in a Jesus who is not god but only a good teacher and a moral man.  Muslims say Jesus is a prophet only.  The Mormons say that Jesus is the brother of the devil and only one god among many gods.   Who do you say He is?

Please note that John 10:26 says, "but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep."  The Pharisees were very religious people.  They prayed, paid tithes, made disciples and converts, and did many good works.  But Jesus called them a brood of vipers who made their converts children of hell.

Just as true believers are known to have true faith by their good works following after faith, so true believers are also known by their right doctrine/belief.  There is only one Gospel (Galatians 1:6-9), one Jesus (2 Corinthians 11:3-4), and one faith (Ephesians 4:5-6; Jude 1:3-4).  Christians are to "earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints" (Jude 1:3).  That faith is a certain and specific set of essential doctrines of the Christian religion.  It would mean that those who do not manifest a true profession of faith have not yet been truly converted. 

What are those essentials of the Christian faith?  There are many.  However, among those essentials is the fact that Christ died for the elect alone and that not one of them will be lost (Matthew 24:24).  The Trinity is non-negotiable as well (2 Corinthians 13:14; Matthew 28:18-20).  The full deity of Christ as both God and man in one Person is non-negotiable (Colossians 1:19; Colossians 2:9).

At the end of time God will gather His elect from all over the world:

And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. (Matthew 24:31 ESV)

These persons were chosen before the foundation of the world and before they did either good or evil:

even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love (Ephesians 1:4 ESV)

though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad--in order that God's purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls-- 12 she was told, "The older will serve the younger." 13 As it is written, "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated." (Romans 9:11-13 ESV)

Since Arminianism contradicts the doctrines of grace, they have more in common with the Roman Catholics than with the biblical Christian faith.  Arminians, like Catholics, believe that the elect can be lost, that Christ died for those He would not actually save, and that justification and sanctification are the same thing.  In the end it is the blending of sanctification and justification infused into the heart that earns or merits salvation for the Arminian and the Catholic.  Arminians give lip service to justification by faith alone but when we look deeper it is obvious that they reject the doctrine of imputed righteousness (Romans 4:4-8).

While I might agree that you could be one of God's elect, it is not clear that you are truly converted at this point, Sue.  I say that because you reject several of the doctrines that are essential to true faith.  Believing in one God is not enough.  Believing in a Jesus who fits your own ideas of what Jesus or God should be like is not enough.  You must be sanctified by the truth:

Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth. 20 "I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, (John 17:17-20 ESV)

May God grant you the grace to believe the simple Gospel message:  Salvation is ALL of God.

all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, "What have you done?" (Daniel 4:35 ESV)

Reasonable Christian Blog Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Ghost; Answer. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be : world without end. Amen. 1662 Book of Common Prayer


aztexan said...

Thanks for your consistently good content, brother. This is choice, and not in the Arminian sense.

Charlie J. Ray said...

Thanks, Tex! What is a Calvinist doing in Glasgow? hehe

Reminds me of a clip I saw today of the Three Stooges. Curly saw a sign that he thought said "Glasgow". But his gf corrected him. "It says,'Go Slow'". "OH!" hahaha

aztexan said...

Bite your tongue! I snapped this pic in Edinburgh. :-)

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