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Old 07-20-2013, 08:28 PM
Status: "Celebrating." (set 8 days ago)
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
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One can't be good without doing good.
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:21 PM
 
Location: El Paso, TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wardendresden View Post
I will, however, call you to task about YOUR accusation that I said in the same post that works aren't necessary and then they are. Please quote that for all our readers. I believe you may refer to post #134 of the Dead Faith = Faith Without Works thread. If so, at least point to my contradictory words--as in:
Post #134 in Dead Faith = Faith without Works

Statement #1 Sinners are not saved by good works, but they cannot lay any claim to eternal life without them.

Statement #2 Lip service is inadequate, DOING God's word brings salvation (I John 2:3-6)

Not only does statement #2 contradict statement #1, but the second half of statement #1 contradicts the first half of that statement.

Quote:
And frankly, even if I wrote something contradictory, have you been unable to grasp that I place emphasis on the COMBINATION OF CONFESSION AND WORKS as the path of salvation. It is the Lordship view that you dismiss. Because while you claim Jesus as your Savior, you words make you appear to say your confession of Him as Savior did not include your acceptance of Him as Lord. If you did His works, then YOU would be able to understand what a dozen people have been trying to point out again and again. The two, decisional salvation AND works, are one and the same.
What you do not grasp is that the issue in salvation is not recognizing the Lordship of Jesus but recognizing His Messiahship. Jesus Christ IS Lord, but that is not the stated requirement for salvation. You do not have to have works in order to be saved. You do not have to show evidence of works in order to be saved. You simply have to place your trust in the already finished work of Christ on the Cross. He already did everything that is required so that God can offer the free gift of eternal life to man. And the offer is received by simply believing on Christ. Not by trying to earn it by your efforts. Believing on Christ - having faith in Christ is non-meritorious. The merit is in the object of faith which is Jesus. Not in the faith. And not in yourself.

As the believer grows in his spiritual life he will become more faithful in his determination to obey the commands of God. But that's a matter for the believer's spiritual life. It is not an issue in phase one salvation (see immediately below). The only issue in receiving the free gift of eternal life is to simply believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah. That He died on the Cross for your sins.

A gift is neither a gift or free if you have to do anything to earn or deserve it, or to keep it.

Now observe the different phases of salvation and distinguish between them.

There are three stages or phases of salvation.

1.) Phase one: Saved from the eternal penalty of sin. This means that at the moment of faith alone in Christ alone, at the moment you realize that Jesus died for your sins, then in simply putting your faith in Him you are saved for all eternity.
Ephesians 2:5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive (aorist indicative; In the indicative mood the aorist tense denotes action that occurred in the past time), together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6] and raised us up (aorist indicative) with Him, and seated us (aorist indicative) with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7] so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8] For by grace you are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
In the indicative mood the aorist tense denotes action that occurred in the past time, often translated like the English simple past tense. Greek Verbs (Shorter Definitions)

At the very moment a person trusts in Christ for eternal life, he is made alive in Christ and is positionally raised up and seated with Christ in the heavenlies. The believer is in union with Jesus Christ and is positionally seated with Christ in His session at the right hand of the Father.


2.) Phase two: Saved from the power of sin. This is the spiritual life and the advance to spiritual maturity. The believer still has a sin nature after salvation and it is just as powerful as it was before salvation if the believer gives it that power. Before the believer was saved he was under the control of his sin natue. But after salvation the believer is free positionally from the power of the old sin nature because it was crucified with Christ. That means that the old sin nature is positionally dead. Not experientially, but positionally. The believer is positionally separated from its power and now has an option to either live his life under the influence of the Holy Spirit by staying in fellowship through the confession of sin as per 1 John 1:9, and applying God's word to his life, or he can live his life under the control of his sin nature. The believer can choose to put himself under the control of his sin nature like a dog returns to its vomit. So the believer has a choice. Life under the influence of the Holy Spirit or life under the control of his old sin nature. One or the other. As the believer applies God's word under the filling ministry of the Holy Spirit he is saved or delivered from the power of sin in his life.


3.) Phase three: Glorification when the believer is saved from the presence of sin when he dies and is absent from the body and face to face with the Lord.

When James asks his fellow believers...
James 2:14 What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him?
He is referring to phase two salvation. Being saved from the power of sin in the believer's life. Eternal salvation is not in view.


Quote:
Do you believe that Jesus was both God and Man? Many people have trouble understanding that, but I think you do not. I have said that Jesus is (FAITH=GOD and WORKS=MAN) and the combination of the two = SALVATION, both part of the same equation.
Of course Jesus is both God and man. Ever since the incarnation Jesus Christ is in hypostatic union forever.

That is completely unrelated to the fact that eternal salvation, phase one salvation, (see the section above) is by simply believing that Jesus died on the Cross for your sins and therefore trusting Jesus for your salvation. Works have nothing to do with receiving eternal life. Works have to do with phase two salvation. Not with phase one salvation.


Quote:
You pointedly ignored Clear Lens on the previous thread who with quite interesting clarity pointed out with numerous historical quotes that the early church always believed that faith in Christ and repentance and works were tied together.
The issue is not what the early church believed, but what the Bible teaches. The understanding of what the Bible teaches about the Trinity, the Person of Christ, the work of Christ, the doctrine of salvation was undeveloped in the earliest periods of the church. But as time went on, Christians wrestled with and developed a clearer understanding of what the Bible teaches on these issues.

For crying out loud, the Bible specifically tells us that works are not a part of eternal salvation. Go back to the original post of this thread and actually read it.

Quote:
The gospel you now preach is an aberration from the early Christian church---and a RECENT aberration at that. I prefer to hold to the earliest beliefs of those Christians who were nearest in time to our Lord. You are welcome to chase Charles Finney.
The gospel is that God so loved the world that He gave His unique Son so that whoever believes on Him shall not perish but have everlasting life (see John 3:16). To believe on Christ simply means to believe that He died for your sins, and believing that, to trust your salvation entirely to Him. Not to trust your salvation to your own works, to your own efforts.


Quote:
Now you have caught me in one contradiction. I stated previously I was leaving the thread. And this time I mean it. This thread is a duplicate of Dead Faith = Faith Without Works thread and every post on here should have been over there so that new readers could see the full progression of the different opinions. I feel like there has been an attempt at religious gerry-mandering.

This post is left, so that other readers may rightly divide truth between what I REALLY said on the other thread (in quotes above), and what was so poorly interpreted by another.
No, this thread is about the fact that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, and not by works. It is not about how the believer should live his spiritual life after salvation which is what you people keep trying to turn this thread to. You people merge what is required for eternal life - simply trusting in the finished work of Christ on the Cross, with what is required for the believer to have a productive spiritual life after salvation - learning and applying the Word of God to your life as a believer. They are two different things.
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:16 PM
 
Location: El Paso, TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Humble_Servant View Post
Again, there is genuine faith and there is dead faith. You have to figure out which faith you have. Can a homosexual have faith in Jesus and continue in willful sin and still get to heaven? Yes or no?
No, there is not. The dead faith of which James speaks is a non-productive faith. Not a non-existent faith.

While James uses the word nekros - 'dead' in James 2:17, in James 2:20 he uses the word argos which refers to an idle, lazy, thoughtless, unprofitable faith.

James is writing to eternally saved believers who are not applying their faith to their spiritual life. They were previously saved simply by trusting in the finished work of Christ on the Cross, and now they are being told by James that they are to be doer's of the word rather than simply hearers of the word. They were and are eternally saved, but as eternally saved believers they have to apply their faith in order to have a productive spiritual life.

What do you think of when you see the word 'dead'? You think of something that was once alive. Not of something which never existed.

Regarding the question about the homosexual, if he has trusted in Jesus Christ for eternal life he will certainly go to heaven. When you see a passage like Revelation 21:8 with its list of sins, one view is that it is the unbeliever who is in view. Not the believer who is covered by the blood of Christ. There is another view which says that while the believer is in view, what is being referred to by the phrase in Revelation 21:8, 'their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death,' is not the believer himself but the inheritance or reward of the willfully sinning believer which will be forfeited and burned up in the lake of fire. 'Their part,' meros- share, portion of the inheritance, not the inheritance that will be common to all believers, but the rest of the inheritence which is distributed only to the believer who persevered in his spiritual life on Earth.

All sin, ALL SIN was paid for by Jesus on the Cross which means that sin is not even the issue in salvation anymore. God will not judge the unbeliever for his sins since they were already judged in Christ. The unbeliever is still a sinner, but so is the believer. But the believer is an eternally saved sinner. The unbeliever who dies in his sins will be judged not for his sins, but for his deeds of righteousness. Not his deeds of unrighteousness, but his deeds which originate from his relative human righteousness.
Isaiah 64:6 For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
Since the unbeliever does not possess the imputed perfect righteousness of God, he is judged on the basis of the only production of the old sin nature that he can be judged for. Since his sins have already been judged, the only thing the unbeliever can be judged for is his deeds which, again, originate from his old sin nature.

The believer will be evaluated at the judgment seat of Christ and rewarded for his works of 'gold, silver and precious stones,' while his works of 'wood, hay and straw' will be burned up.

The unbeliever on the other hand will be shown at the great white throne judgment that no matter how many good works he had, they were all from his human righteousness and therefore unacceptable to God. To put it another way, the believer has an eternal relationship with God because he possesses the imputed righteousness of God, as well as God's own eternal life, but the person who died never having accepted Christ as Savior will be eternally separated from God because he has only his own imperfect righteousness which cannot have fellowshio with God's perfect righteousness.
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Old 07-21-2013, 05:55 PM
 
Location: In a state of Grace
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Can anyone read James 1:1 and tell me who James say's he is writing this letter to?
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Old 07-21-2013, 07:55 PM
 
Location: Southern Oregon
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I have changed my mind. Oh of course the teaching is a travesty on the message of Christ, but it is the perfect answer to the other travesty: eternal punishment for non-believers. Hey, if all someone wants is to escape the fires of an imaginary Hell, all they have to do is say, "I beleeeeeve!" It really doesn't change anything, but it removes a foolish worry. Sure the person involved is in for what might be a painful education process, but that was fairly likely anyway.

Anyone who is really interested in the message of Christ won't be satisfied with escaping "Hell" but will be looking for a new Way and a foundation to live it out.
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Old 07-21-2013, 08:37 PM
 
Location: New England
34,705 posts, read 23,103,424 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nateswift View Post
I have changed my mind. Oh of course the teaching is a travesty on the message of Christ, but it is the perfect answer to the other travesty: eternal punishment for non-believers. Hey, if all someone wants is to escape the fires of an imaginary Hell, all they have to do is say, "I beleeeeeve!" It really doesn't change anything, but it removes a foolish worry. Sure the person involved is in for what might be a painful education process, but that was fairly likely anyway.

Anyone who is really interested in the message of Christ won't be satisfied with escaping "Hell" but will be looking for a new Way and a foundation to live it out.
It is my personal belief that Gehenna is a place of reformation for all who oppose the crux of the message of the liberating message of Jesus Christ, and it will be full of 100% bible believers who do not share and express the same mercy they have been shown towards those who in their eyes are undeserving of it. How could we possibly be good towards those we believe are undeserving ?. It could only be done begrudgingly at best.
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:01 PM
 
Location: El Paso, TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nateswift View Post
I have changed my mind. Oh of course the teaching is a travesty on the message of Christ, but it is the perfect answer to the other travesty: eternal punishment for non-believers. Hey, if all someone wants is to escape the fires of an imaginary Hell, all they have to do is say, "I beleeeeeve!" It really doesn't change anything, but it removes a foolish worry. Sure the person involved is in for what might be a painful education process, but that was fairly likely anyway.

Anyone who is really interested in the message of Christ won't be satisfied with escaping "Hell" but will be looking for a new Way and a foundation to live it out.
Salvation by grace, through faith (in Christ Jesus) and not by works, the very topic of this thread (see the original post) and what the apostle Paul wrote in Ephesians 2:8-9, is not a travesty.

And whether by 'hell' you are referring to Hades or to the lake of fire, neither are imaginary, but are plainly taught in the Bible. It is sheer denial to call imaginary something which is revealed in the Bible to be a reality.
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:35 PM
 
Location: Southern Oregon
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Does it strike anybody else as significant that I get a response maintaining Damnation, but no mention whatsoever of living in the Way?
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Old 07-22-2013, 01:36 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
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Default When you quote out of context

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike555 View Post
Post #134 in Dead Faith = Faith without Works

Statement #1 Sinners are not saved by good works, but they cannot lay any claim to eternal life without them.

Statement #2 Lip service is inadequate, DOING God's word brings salvation (I John 2:3-6)

Not only does statement #2 contradict statement #1, but the second half of statement #1 contradicts the first half of that statement.
Mike, since you are unable to quote a mere human like me in context, so the message is clear it's easy to see how you are unable to quote Scripture in context. Here is the entire excerpt where you falsely claim my posts are incorrect:

Quote:
The invitations to make a decision (and I have given a number of them myself), sounds like this---"There is nothing you can do-----all you have to do----it is so easy to be saved in the next few
seconds----you can know tonight that you will never go to hell."

Rather than focus on what God did for the elect, it puts all the attention on what a sinner does when presented with the gospel, as if this is the sole (no pun) determing factor.

Sinners are not saved by good works, but they cannot lay any claim to eternal life without them.
<out of quote>(the above line in reference to the previous line THAT IT WAS WHAT GOD DID FOR THE ELECT that is important)<end out of quote>

Even so great a sinner as David recognized the need to walk blameless, stay truthful, and refrain from doing wrong toward others. (Psalm 15)

II Peter 1:10 says -- <snip> "---give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye DO these things, ye shall never fall." What are these things? Read II Peter 1: 5-7---add to your faith virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, and charity. Why would Peter even suspect you
could fall if decisional salvation were the defining factor in a Christian life?

The gospels again and again connect faith and repentance, which rejects sinful living in order to follow Jesus as Lord and Master of all parts of you life. (Matt 3:8-10 --Produce fruit in keeping with repentance---the axe is already at the root of the tree, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.) Luke 3:10-14, John is explicit in the way people should act--"The man with two tunics should share with him who has none, and the one with food should do the same." Tax collectors coming to be baptized asked, "Teacher, what should we do?" "Don't collect any more than you are required to," he told them. Then some soldiers asked him, "And what should
we do?" he replied, "Don't extort money and don't accuse people falsely--be content with your pay."

The only way decisional theology can explain these words is to say the one time decision is the only good fruit---in which case all other fruits may be ignored by self-important man. Exactly what the pharisees were doing.

And Jesus says, regarding the end time, "---for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out--those who have DONE GOOD will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned." (John 5:28-29) SO the only good is a one time decision?

If FAITH is the hand accepting salvation, why does Paul write that there is one thing greater than faith---and that is love (I Cor 13:13)

Be doers of the of the Word, not readers or hearers (I James 1:23-25) vs. 25 "But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues doing to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but DOING it---he will be blessed in what he does."

Lip service is inadequate, DOING God's word brings salvation (I John 2:3-6) "We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says "I know him" but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if ANYONE obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus walked."
Now let the rest of the audience judge my words. They may go to my posts on Dead Faith = Faith Without Works and read post 12, 41, 71, 75, 76, 83, 93, 100, 112, and 134 to see whether or not I have consistently argued that for a Christian Faith AND Works are one and the same.

Your one time decisionalism put emphasis on the sinner, not on the God who rescued the sinner. Jesus called for obedience, and those who do not practice it should very carefully read I John 2:3-6. "This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him MUST, (may I repeat) MUST walk as Jesus walked."

Again and again I have stated that faith and works are not separate even as Jesus is both God and Man, so Faith and Works equal Salvation.

You have created a "phased" road to discipleship that would be absolutely astonishing to any of the early church. Your entire theology has no historical background with early believers. And, so that other readers may enjoy and learn from post #219 on the other thread Dead Faith = Faith Without Works, by Clear Lens (who I suspect is a biblical scholar), I post part of it here:

Quote:
Christian Barnabas reminds us against this insistence that we can accept and believe in Jesus and then remain in our sins and do evil without any attempt to follow Jesus moral injunctions is not the early christian belief. They were told to : “...Be on your guard now, and do not be like certain people; that is, do not continue to pile up your sins while claiming that your covenant is irrevocably yours, because in fact those people lost it completely. The Epistle of Barnabas 4:6;


I have been deeply engaged in posts by MysticPhDs’, trettps’, Wardendresdens’, Godofthunders’, not simply because they are logical and reasonable, but because they are consistent with the earliest textual witness of Christian interpretation I am aware of. I honestly don’t know when the later christianities started interpreting the biblical text as grace having made authentic repentance and attempts to moral social engagement and improvement superfluous, but we do not find such interpretations in the earliest judeo-christian texts where the earliest judeo-christians themselves, describe their own beliefs.

For example, MysticPhDs’ description of repentance in its context of attempting to learn to do better, to improve morally, IS very profound. His point is consistent with the observation that in early Christian tradition, there were other very important and on-going processes involved in salvation which simple belief in Jesus as a savior without following Jesus moral injunctions do not fulfill. Consider MysticPhD earlier comment that we are to repent and attempt to improve.

Despite it’s “bad press”, the principle of repentance was an integral part of Gods plan for mankind from the very beginning. Judao-christian creation council texts relate that it was the principle of repentance and redemption that were key in settling doubts about God’s plan for mans moral education. Jewish Haggadah reminds us the importance of repentance to Gods plan.

When God resolved upon the creation of the world, he took counsel” and his advisors were: quote “ skeptical about the value of an earthly world on account of the sinfulness of men, who would be sure to disregard her precepts. But God dispelled her doubts. He told her that repentance had been created long before, and sinners would have the opportunity of mending their ways” (The Haggadah - first things created ch 1)
Bolding in the above quote is mine. Clear Lens goes into much detail with excerpts from early church writings on each of several topics:
1. Repentance is a principle inherent to moral progression.
2. Repentance was not merely regret or embarrassment.
3. Authentic versus Counterfeit repentance.
4. Repentance represents a real and on-going effort to change, not a temporary adjustment.
5. Repentance, forgiveness, mercy and judgment are necessarily related--All are necessary

Quote:
I do not think the later theory of "faith" without repentance or works (i.e. a faith that is dead) has any moral advantage over the earliest christian doctrine of faith accompanied by attempts to be like jesus and do his works (i.e. a faith that is living).
Clear Lens, Post #219, Dead Faith = Faith Without Works.

The New Testament calls a man to confession in some places AND works in others. If there are Scriptures that say one is "saved by faith," and still others that say "those who have DONE GOOD will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned,"(John 5:28-29), how should we Christians reconcile those differences? Cling to one and dismiss the other? Rationalize and attempt to justify one or the other? Or fulfill BOTH instructions, by confessing with the mouth and living with the life?

The interesting thing about all the predictions of how the church will become perverted in the end times, is that it may already BE perverted, and the vast majority within it cannot recognize what has happened. Clinging to modern day theology without researching history to see when, where, and why it arose, and why original theology should be discarded, can be a spiritually blinding thing.

Last edited by Wardendresden; 07-22-2013 at 01:44 AM.. Reason: formatting
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:19 AM
 
Location: El Paso, TX
26,131 posts, read 19,242,484 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wardendresden View Post
Mike, since you are unable to quote a mere human like me in context, so the message is clear it's easy to see how you are unable to quote Scripture in context. Here is the entire excerpt where you falsely claim my posts are incorrect:


Now let the rest of the audience judge my words. They may go to my posts on Dead Faith = Faith Without Works and read post 12, 41, 71, 75, 76, 83, 93, 100, 112, and 134 to see whether or not I have consistently argued that for a Christian Faith AND Works are one and the same.

Your one time decisionalism put emphasis on the sinner, not on the God who rescued the sinner. Jesus called for obedience, and those who do not practice it should very carefully read I John 2:3-6. "This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him MUST, (may I repeat) MUST walk as Jesus walked."

Again and again I have stated that faith and works are not separate even as Jesus is both God and Man, so Faith and Works equal Salvation.

You have created a "phased" road to discipleship that would be absolutely astonishing to any of the early church. Your entire theology has no historical background with early believers. And, so that other readers may enjoy and learn from post #219 on the other thread Dead Faith = Faith Without Works, by Clear Lens (who I suspect is a biblical scholar), I post part of it here:


Bolding in the above quote is mine. Clear Lens goes into much detail with excerpts from early church writings on each of several topics:
1. Repentance is a principle inherent to moral progression.
2. Repentance was not merely regret or embarrassment.
3. Authentic versus Counterfeit repentance.
4. Repentance represents a real and on-going effort to change, not a temporary adjustment.
5. Repentance, forgiveness, mercy and judgment are necessarily related--All are necessary


Clear Lens, Post #219, Dead Faith = Faith Without Works.

The New Testament calls a man to confession in some places AND works in others. If there are Scriptures that say one is "saved by faith," and still others that say "those who have DONE GOOD will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned,"(John 5:28-29), how should we Christians reconcile those differences? Cling to one and dismiss the other? Rationalize and attempt to justify one or the other? Or fulfill BOTH instructions, by confessing with the mouth and living with the life?

The interesting thing about all the predictions of how the church will become perverted in the end times, is that it may already BE perverted, and the vast majority within it cannot recognize what has happened. Clinging to modern day theology without researching history to see when, where, and why it arose, and why original theology should be discarded, can be a spiritually blinding thing.
No Dresden. It is you who put the emphasis on what you do rather than on what Christ has done at the cross by maintaining that you must earn your eternal salvation by how you live. You are unable and unwilling to make a distinction between the fact that on the one hand eternal life is a free gift which is received by grace through faith alone in Christ alone, and that on the other hand, the believer after salvation grows to spiritual maturity by being a doer of the word rather than just a hearer of the word. You talk about context, and yet you fail to place within their respective contexts the issue of eternal salvation and the issue of living a productive spiritual life. You merge the two together and make, as legalists do, living a productive spiritual life a requirement for eternal salvation. Something that the Bible never does.

You say that faith plus works equals salvation. The apostle Paul says that salvation is by grace through faith, and not by works.


Since you disregard the teachings of the apostle Paul, it is no surprise that you will not listen to me. Here is what you said about Paul in post #12 of the following thread. >>> Dead Faith = Faith without Works
''Faith without works is dead in the eyes of Jesus. But the judgmental churches of today rely on Pauline doctrine to allow people to justify their inaction and smugly think Jesus will receive them. Paul was a great builder of the church system we have today, but he did so because he was not familiar with the words of Jesus. James, who had walked with our Lord, was.

Those who would rely on Paul's teaching--so be it. I prefer to follow the words of Jesus, who is the One who provides salvation.''

You do not understand that Paul and James were not talking about the same thing. And you misunderstand Paul. You believe that Paul dismissed works. But let's look at what Paul said.
1Corinthians 9:1 Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord?

2] If to others I am not an apostle, at least I am to you; for you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.

3] My defense to those who examine me is this:

4] Do we not have a right to eat and drink?

5] Do we not have a right to take along a believing wife, even as the rest of the apostles and the brothers of the Lord and Cephas?

6] Or do only Barnabas and I not have a right to refrain from working?

7] Who at any time serves as a soldier at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat the fruit of it? Or who tends a flock and does not use the milk of the flock?

8] I am not speaking these things according to human judgment, am I? Or does not the Law also say these things?

9] For it is written in the Law of Moses, "YOU SHALL NOT MUZZLE THE OX WHILE HE IS THRESHING." God is not concerned about oxen, is He?

10] Or is He speaking altogether for our sake? Yes, for our sake it was written, because the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing the crops.

11] If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we reap material things from you?

12] If others share the right over you, do we not more? Nevertheless, we did not use this right, but we endure all things so that we will cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ.

13] Do you not know that those who perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who attend regularly to the altar have their share from the altar?

14] So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.

15] But I have used none of these things. And I am not writing these things so that it will be done so in my case; for it would be better for me to die than have any man make my boast an empty one.

16] For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for I am under compulsion; for woe is me if I do not preach the gospel.

17] For if I do this voluntarily, I have a reward; but if against my will, I have a stewardship entrusted to me.

18] What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may offer the gospel without charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel.

19] For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, so that I may win more.

20] To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law;

21] to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, so that I might win those who are without law.

22] To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak; I have become all things to all men, so that I may by all means save some.

23] I do all things for the sake of the gospel, so that I may become a fellow partaker of it.

24] Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.

25] Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.

26] Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;

27] but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
Now Paul was not talking about being disqualified from having eternal life. He was not worried about losing his salvation, for that is impossible. Paul was concerned about running the race of his spiritual life in such a way so as not to be disqualified from eternal rewards. Rewards which glorify God. And his message was that all believers should do likewise.
1Corinthians 15:9 For I am the least of the apostles, and not fit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10] But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me did not prove vain; but I labored even more than all of them, yet not I, but the grace of God with me. 11] Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.
Paul stated that he labored more than any of the other apostles in preaching the gospel of salvation and that they all preached the same gospel. And what is that gospel? That Jesus died for your sins. In believing that, entrust your eternal salvation to Jesus Christ and you are eternally saved. Works on your part are not involved. Works are the result of growing spiritually. They are not the means of becoming saved.

This simple message of grace, Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9] not as a result of works, so that no one may boast., offends you. The apostle Paul offends you. I offend you. The principle of legalism is at enmity with the principle of grace.

The legalist does not understand that while God expects the believer to pick up his cross and follow Jesus, eternal life is given as a free gift by grace through faith alone in Christ alone. Salvation is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no man may boast.


And what did I point out in the original post?

I pointed out that works are a part of the spiritual life after salvation.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

And still you legalists accuse me of dismissing the importance of works. I do not. But works simply play no part in your eternal salvation.

Oh, and by the way, 1 John 2:3-6 is not addressing salvation, but is referring to a believer's day to day rapport with Christ. Being in fellowship. It is not referring to the believer's permanent position in Jesus which occurs at the moment of faith alone in Christ alone.

Last edited by Michael Way; 07-22-2013 at 08:37 AM..
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