LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Salvation By Knowing The Truth pt.8 - Spurgeon

Now, I think I hear somebody say, "I think I know all about this." Yes, you may think you know it, and may not know anything at all about it. " Oh, but," says one, "I do know it. I learned the 'Assembly's Catechism' when I was a child. I have read the Bible ever since, and I am well acquainted with all the commonplaces of orthodoxy." That may be, dear friend, and yet you may not know the truth. I have heard of a man who knew how to swim, but, as he had never been in the water, I do not think much of his knowledge of swimming: in fact, he did not really know the art. I have heard of a botanist who understood all about flowers, but as he lived in London, and scarcely ever saw above one poor withered thing in a flowerpot, I do not think much of his botany. I have heard of a man who was a very great astronomer, but he had not a telescope, and I never thought much of his astronomy. So there are many persons who think they know and yet do not know because they have never had any personal acquaintance with the thing. A mere notional knowledge or a dry doctrinal knowledge is of no avail. We must know the truth in a very different way from that.
How are we to know it, then? Well, we are to know it, first, by a believing knowledge. You do not know a thing unless you believe it to be really so. If you doubt it, you do not know it. If you say, "I really am not sure it is true," then you cannot say that you know it. That which the Lord has revealed in holy Scripture you must devoutly believe to be true. In addition to this, your knowledge, if it becomes believing knowledge, must be personal knowledge—a persuasion that it is true in reference to yourself. It is true about your neighbor, about your brother, but you must believe it about yourself, or your knowledge is vain—for instance, you must know that you are lost—that you are in danger of eternal destruction from the presence of God—that for you there is no hope but in Christ—that for you there is hope if you rest in Christ—that resting in Christ you are saved. Yes, you. You must know that because you have trusted in Christ you are saved, and that now you are free from condemnation, and that now in you the new life has begun, which will fight against the old life of sin, until it overcome, and you, even you, are safely landed on the golden shore. There must be a personal appropriation of what you believe to be true. That is the kind of knowledge which saves the soul.

50 Comments:

Blogger bluecollar said...

http://www.spurgeon.org/mainpage.htm

May 16, 2006 6:59 AM

 
Blogger jel said...

Morning Mark

you may have the head knowledge,but you don't have the heart knowledge! is this the jest of this post, I don't always catch thing the first time around,

have a great day!

May 16, 2006 7:43 AM

 
Blogger Gayla said...

Just to expound a bit on what Spurgeon says:

Until God divinely and supernaturally imparts truth into our hearts, well...just words on a page.

May 16, 2006 10:12 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Janice: I agree with your thoughts! Thanks for sharing them.

Gayla: Right on!

May 16, 2006 11:15 AM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Spurgeon's identification of faith as knowledge of personal salvation fits in with Zane Hodges' view that faith is a passive trust in Christ for eternal life.

God Bless

Matthew

May 16, 2006 11:50 AM

 
Blogger jel said...

Mark , I was asking you, if that is what he is saying in this?

May 16, 2006 12:03 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Janice: Yes!

May 16, 2006 12:48 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Actually Matthew, if you were to read his Autobiography, especially the middle portions of the first volume, you would see that Spurgeon believed very firmly in regeneration necessarily resulting in fruit and a changed life.

In today's climate, I can speak authoritativly that he would be classified as being in the Lordship Salvation camp.

May 16, 2006 12:59 PM

 
Blogger jel said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

May 16, 2006 1:06 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Mark, I am well aware of his firm Puritan tendencies. Hence, I do not regard Spurgeon as being sound in doctrine.

However, regardless of his views on sanctification, Spurgeon here advocates a view of faith that is difficult to differentiate from Hodges' 'passive trust' or what gets pejoratively dismissed as 'mere mental assent'.

What Spurgeon here identifies as faith seems to be the knowledge that Christ's work justifies one.

It is a passive trust. It is hard to see how it could be volitional.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 16, 2006 4:15 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Mark,

I tend to disagree with you there. Some in the Lordship camp are comfortable with the Puritans, but Spurgeon...though he read them often and knew them well, said they went to far. Some in the Lordship camp seem to blindly follow the Puritans as though they were right about everything. Spurgeon also called you to rest. I find some in the Lordship camp monopolizing on the unrest, so I am not sure, but I will say that he would remain unique as He did back then and that I agree with His theology and think that He would definately disagree with Zane Hodges and that Zane's group would classify him as Lordship. I find him to be in between say MacArthur and Lutzer.

May 16, 2006 9:24 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

I guess we would agree that some would classify him as Lordship, but I think he would at times encounter difficulties from the Lordship camp as Lutzer does sometimes. He is accused of being a cheap gracer, but he is not.

May 16, 2006 9:27 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Mr. Bluecollar,
I am still enjoying this series and I believe his theology is very sound. When people have long forgotten about Zane Hodges, Sprugeon will still be a great resource.

Jazzycat

May 16, 2006 10:19 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Spurgeon was long forgotten in the UK for many years.

It is only since the sixties that there has been a revival of interest in Spurgeon.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 17, 2006 3:35 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: You consider Spurgeon unsound only because you view him through a theological lens that had not been invented yet. Yes, fg theology is an invention of man. It certainly is not God-breathed.. The standard you use to judge Spurgeon by is rather new on the scene- since the later half of the 20th century. And it could not exist without standing on the shoulders of J.N.Darby's peculiar approach to interpreting scripture.

Matthew, tell me,what became of the relationship between George Meuller and Darby. Wasn't Darby's way of interpreting scripture rather odious to Meuller?

If you read Spurgeon's Autbiography you will notice that he had no respect for anyone claiming salvation without manifesting a desire for godliness. Also, if you read his sermon (#130) on regeneration,portions of which can be found on my blog, you will notice that he held to the view that regeneration precedes faith and repentance. That is why he said faith was so simple.

When I posted his testimony in early Feb.It was obvious that all he testified to was having only to look to the Savior for salvation, and he was saved- so simple. Yet, years later, in looking back at his coming to Christ, he recounted it as the day that he surrendered all to Jesus in repentance, and renouncing of self - Yes,repentance! According to his own testimony, that was the day that he gave himself to live a life totally given to Christ. There was nothing passive about it.

Passive faith can not be found in scripture. I look at Hebrews 11 and see that faith is seen in obedience (11:8);self sacrifice (24-27,35-38). Passive faith? No!

Was Paul's faith passive? From the outset he was told that he was going to suffer for Christ (Acts 9:16). Jesus said that whoever would come after Him must deny themselves and take up the cross and follow Him. And don't try to Darby-ize this verse by saying that it was only to Israel that this teaching applied. It is FOR ANY AND ALL! I pity the teachers who must give an account for having taught that denial of one's self in coming to Christ is not for today. Even the "Progressive Dispensationalists" distance themselves from this shaby handling of the word.

You yourself have said that Dallas Theological Seminary is toning down its Chafer inspired Classic Dispyism because of the rise of Progressive Dispensationalism (PD). Why is that? Why is there a rise of PD in the first place? Could it be that they see that Darby, Scofield and Chafer were somewhat in error?

If Dispensationalism must live, I would rather see it live in the "Progressive" form, ie. eg. MacArthur. He is not wont to divide and break up the word of God.

"and that repentance and the remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations..." Long live the unbroken and undivided Word of God!!!

May 17, 2006 7:44 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Also Matthew, did you notice when Spurgeon in this post said...
" and that now in you the new life has begun, which will fight against the old life of sin, until it overcome, and you, even you, are safely landed on the golden shore. There must be a personal appropriation of what you believe to be true. That is the kind of knowledge which saves the soul."

I don't see any passive faith here. I see mention of "a new life...which will fight against the old life of sin until it overcomes". Passive faith? Hardly!

May 17, 2006 7:54 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Jazzycat: Keep coming back!

Brian: I shall enjoy taking shots from both sides. That means I must be doing something right.

Care to join me?

May 17, 2006 7:57 AM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

'Personal appropriation' is a term that I would use.

We appropriate eternal life by faith. By what Spurgeon calls here the knowledge of the truth.

Knowledge is passive. Nobody ever decided to know something. It was revealed to them.

Mark, I never choose to believe that you are a reasonable and warm-hearted man. You have revealed your character through your conduct. I have thus come to believe that this is the truth about you. There is nothing in my trust in your character that is volitional. It is a knowledge of the truth that I have received.

I could have rejected this revelation of your character. Our of pride and bigotry, I might have deceived myself about your character and hardened my heart as to the truth about you. I might have made myself believe that you are really mean and bigoted.

However, by not rejecting the truth about you I have come to a passive trust in your moral character.

"I don't see any passive faith here. I see mention of "a new life...which will fight against the old life of sin until it overcomes". Passive faith? Hardly!"

You are confusing Spurgeon's view of faith with his view of regeneration and sanctification.

I would not deny the anti-Free Grace implications of Spurgeon's views on sanctification, but his comments about faith here and in other excerpts supports Hodges' view of faith as a passive trust.


If I may be so bold, I think you make too much of the historical position of Free Grace theology and Dispensationalism.

The reason people are turning away from Free Grace and Dispensationalims is because they love the traditions of men more than the Word of God.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 17, 2006 12:05 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Mark said> Care to Join me?<

It looks like I have no choice, You are the one closest to the truth and where the truth is, I must rest my hat.

It should never be overlooked though that Spurgeon called the soul to rest and in that rest conversion is completed and repentance is completed and faith is born. Yes there can be no other option other than Gods regenerative work preceding our faith, but it is still instantaneous and therefore I distance myself from the others. When Jesus said "Lazurus come forth" his word went out with his regenerative power. Not to mention he allowed Lazurus to stay dead for days, which bears witness to the prepatory work of Christ. The more we smell the deathly caverns of hell and see the abyss, the more prepared we are to hear the words "Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." Ephesians 5:14(also in the Psalms isn't it?"

To the rest of you that I am burdened over and will not *hear* truth...I pray you awake from your tombs of unbelief hear God speak, "Awake O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you."

Repent of your sins and Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Don't listen to clever words that inhibit you from beholding the Glory of God and experiencing His intimate love.

May 17, 2006 4:51 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

One could say that J Vernon Mcgee was similar to Spurgeon, but his voice was Old Time Lemonade and friendly country and that sometimes helps make these truths more palatable. McGee wasnt as forceful as Spurgeon, but I find there thinking similar. McGee didn't chase sin out like the houndog Spurgeon did. Ah we could go on comparing.

May 17, 2006 5:03 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

BTW,

I meant that in a good way as my choices seem to be narrowing down. I really wish it wasn't so, as it gets lonely out here. You seem to be very balanced and for the most part we agree on those essentials. You actually havent changed...kinda like that ol lighthouse/ship analogy. The captain of the ship telling the lighthouse he better move and then finding out he's been arguing with the lighthouse. Hey, God never changes. May his truth stand firm.

Hey I just posted something from the message Jesus only by Spurgeon. Have you ever read it?

May 17, 2006 10:57 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew, You say "Spurgeon here advocates a view of faith that is difficult to differentiate from Hodges'"

Could you please show me who would differ from this and where they differ?

Also, I have arived at the positions that I now hold through personal study and through talking with other brothers in Christ. I know of no love of traditions that has steered me to the path that I am now on theologically.

For you to say that I have fled from Dispyism because I love traditions of men rather than the Word shows me that you really don't know me at all. You would rather believe a caracature of a calvinist and then make broad sweeping judgements about how i handle the word than to look at who Mark Pierson really is. In this I get a glimpse of how you go about perceiving people who disagree with your stand on Calvinism.

In this you have judged my motives. You have attruted my stand against Dispyism to a love of tradition rather than the word.

Surely the judgmental spirit of Darby lives on.

May 18, 2006 8:34 AM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

I do not question your own motives, Mark.

However, you did just say in that comment that you formed your views through personal study AND talking to other brothers in Christ.

The fact is that nobody picks up a Bible and decides 'it teaches Calvinism' or 'it teaches Seventh-Day Adventism.' Rather, people form their views through interaction with others.

You mentioned in our other discussion how you have been influenced by Wayne Grudem.

I can emphathise with that.

When I was at university, at the age of 18, I picked up Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology. I was very influenced by his ideas. At the time, I knew almost nothing about Dispensationalism, I was persuaded to accept his view. I thouhgt to myself "Dispensationalism must be pretty stupid. How could anybody believe that?" Then later I read Dispensational works and saw the flaws in Grudem's arguments.

So we all form our views from a process of interaction with those who we encounter.

It seems to me that there is a powerful current among Reformed people that delights in tradition and the ideas of the past. Many Calvinists bring this thinking in to how they approach theology and the interpretation of the Bible.

With regard to faith, it is common for Reformed theologians to view faith as having a volitional element. This is difficult to reconcile with the idea of faith being the knowledge of the truth.

You have my apologies if my comment was offensive.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 18, 2006 12:01 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: I love you my brother!

I was once influenced my dispyism. Then I realized that it could not be found in the Bible-nowhere. Calvinism is very easy to arrive at by plain reading of the Bible. It is the system that does the least damage to the scriptures, in fact, no damage at all. On the other hand Classic Dispensationalism rips amd tears and "rightly divides" the scritures. It uses some scriptures to effectively wipe out other scriptures. It is perversion.
It is obvious to see that without man's assistance,through elaborately written commentaries and Bibles with footnotes, Dispyism CANNOT be arrived at by the honest layman. Since it is a manmade system, divised by a man who did not want his conclussions to be informed by the clear teachings of the New Testament, but would rather form his views outside the realm of the New Testament, we now have this elaborate concoction to muddy the waters.

The "Progressive(s)" have now appeared on the scene. Why? Have they concluded that Darby,Scofield and Chafer were in error? Perhaps they regarded as unsound this whole idea that the church was a mere parenthesis in God's plan. What about Chafer's views about the Holy Spirit reverting back to the Old Testament dwelling upon the saints during the tribulation. Does that not fly in the face of what Jesus described as a christian in John 7:38 "He who believes in Me,...out of his heart will flow rivers of living water". Again, another incident where the New Testament was not an influence in the final conclussions. Chafer was merely walking in the footsteps of Darby here, maintaining his approach to interpreting scripture.

In the above mentioned situation we can see that stench of a concept that man can respond to God's dealings with gratitude when instead of considering that Romans 1:18-32 teaches that man always responds in hostility. Chafer's work here shows me his low view of the importance of the Holy Spirit's ministry both before conversion and His empowering presence within the believer. The whole concept of the New Testament believer being the temple of the Holy Spirit seems not to have been considered.

I look at Ephesians 2:22 "in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit" as fulfillment of God's ultimate plan for man this side of the eternal state. Darby, Scofield and Chafer seemed to not even consider what is clearly being taught here. Where in the Bible do we find that the Holy Spirit is going to revert back to the Old Testament dwelling upon believers? It is nowhere to be found. Why would He put the plan so clearly revealed in Ehp.2:22 in revearse? How unscriptural. It is a view completely devised while uninformed and unfluenced by the New Testament.

I have even scene one of your associates refer to Progressives as "Regressives" indicating to me his acknowledgment that fg can't exist without Classic Dispyism.

Classic Dispyism is man's attempt to force some peculiar interpretations of Old Testament prophesy onto the New Testament. If Classic Dispyism's eschatological approach is the truth then why is it not taught anywhere in the New Testament. I do not see any where in the New Testament these teachings. Are we to believe that the Old Testament is the final Testament after all? Is not the New Testament the fulfillment of the Old? Classic Dispyism seems to suggest the opposite.

May 19, 2006 8:35 AM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Mark, I am not sure how deeply you have really understood the subtleties of Dispensational thought.

Rather than respond to you dismissal of the whole system of Dispensationalism, I would rather debate you on specific issues.

It is only by approachign specific issues and problems of interpretation that we can evaluate our systems.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 19, 2006 12:54 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Mark,

You are a sleeping Giant brother. Albeit a gentle giant. I will agree with you that Calvanism is the closest system of theology, but I still find some things incomplete about it. For instance scripture does bear witness of the sin unto death that Matthew speaks of often. Having said that, that does not nescessarily do away with the perseverance of the saints. Sometimes the sin unto death can actually be an act of mercy in calling the struggling brother home. Remember even Josiah being a righteous and consistent lover of God, boldly resisted the command of God and went into battle when he was warned not to and so died there, but of course that was part of Gods sovereignty. Also remember Paul speaking of the insestuous man to be cast out so that his body would be destroyed and his soul saved. Also Paul speaks to the man who does not honor the temple(his body) that God lives in...will be destroyed.

Then in dealing with dispensationalism, we are given a prime directive...a command to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.

Having said that Calvanism does seem the system that most closely supports biblical truth in the blueprint, yet still I find it wanting in areas. Those foundational truths are correct, but the rest of the house seems to sometimes be dismissed in other areas. Unfortunately if you miss those foundational truths that Calvanism is most clear on, you miss the heart of truth.

I probably agree more so with a progressive disp. rather than the bold assumptions that half up scripture and deny those foundational Calvanistic truths.

May 19, 2006 6:10 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

I'm still looking into Affective Theology, but again there is much in Calvinism I agree with; however I really just want to behold Jesus in the word and not other men, which is clearly the focus of this blog. I pray it always stays that way. I enjoy reading Bobby Grows site. Do you ever go there?

May 19, 2006 8:51 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew; What you describe as dismisal are matters that I have been dwelling on for years. Besides, that is the easy way out for you not to interact with the things that I have brought up in the past several comments here.

The Independant Fundamentalist churches in my home town are all deeply commited to Scofield's Bible - the old edition. The type of dispyism you describe that you have seems to me to be a hybrid between that which I am exposed to and "Progressive".

Your system - the Israel/ Church distinction - could not hold my convictions any longer. Subtract Darby, Scofield and Chafer from the scene and such a notion would not exist in christendom.

Further more, I believe that their system provides a neat little safe haven for those trying to flee from the clear Biblical teachings on Predestination. The Darby inspired technique of using a portion of scripture to wipe out another portion of scripture is nothing short of mutilation of God's word. I find it deplorible how I have seen YOU handle John 6:36-65 saying that Jesus was trying to harden their hearts here so that they would crucify Him and that later He would draw them to him. Where did you get that notion from? Certainly not from scripture. Subtract the Darbyized approach to handling this chapter and John 6 is restored back to its original fullness...

Verse 36 their unbeliefe is identified.

Verse 37 is God's answer for their unbelief and for all of mankind, "All that the Father gives Me will come to Me" or, again,"This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day."

See now verse 40 "And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that every one who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day". If you dare to relagate these portions of John 6 (verses 36-65) to that period only then why not be consistant and put verse 40 only to that period too? If Darby never existed then nobody would have dreamed of handling John 6 like you do.

Now on to Romans 3:11-"There is none who understands;There is none who seeks after God" . This verse is all part of one train of thought with verse 23,"for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God". Yet, I have seen you use John 12:32 to try to wipe that verse out. Paul would not have bothered to quote Psalm 14:1-3 here had he seen things your way. Remember, he penned this verse post cross/resurrection/ascention. Why would he have bothered had the way you interpret John 12:32 been THE way to interpret it, effectively rendering Romans 3:11 non existant.

Classic Dispyism is nothing short of looking to the Old Testament as the ultimate in the revelation of God. I see it differently. I see the New Testament as the Ultimate revelation of God in the face of Christ. Classic Dispyism is Israel centric; New Covenant Theology is Christocentric, all the Covenants finding their fulfilment in Him.

In Classic dis. Christ is made to share center stage with the nation of Israel. In New Cov. Theology Christ alone is center stage, as it should be. All eyes should be on Christ and Him alone. Classic Dispyism invites us to also look at the nation of Israel. How wrong.

May 20, 2006 12:27 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Brian: You and I should swap ideas untill we come to an agreement. I do not think that you and I are too far apart in how we see things. I shall look forward to more interaction with you.

May 20, 2006 12:34 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: to some New Cov. theology is an attempt to unify Progressive Dispyism and Cov. Theology. I only hope it works.

You are a good brother. I just hate some of your Darbyism.

May 20, 2006 12:38 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Amen brother. Actually you and Terry Rayburn are close although he would differ with Wayne Grudems idea on Active Obedience, but that a whole other subject. Other than that we are in agreement. I see no way to get around predestination and my conscience is bound by Scripture. The invitation is unlimited and I believe intended for the world, yet election is indeed specific; however the heart of Christ weeps over the death of the wicked as well as his wrath burning in Jealousy. I don't claim to understand. I just accept. On the active obediance I see this as the fragrance in Ephesians born out of the inherent righteousness of God and that we are Justified by this at the cross alone. I guess that is the area where we would differ, but I don't consider the understanding of that to be someting to seperate over. Now the deity of Christ..that is colossal. I understand Spurgeon agreed with Federal Theology in many respects(so I differ from him there), but sometimes in reading his message I see him parting ways with the totality of understanding that some Federal Theologians have.I need to look into it more. Have you ever read his message on the Allegories of Hagar and Sarah?

May 20, 2006 4:10 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Mark
"Besides, that is the easy way out for you not to interact with the things that I have brought up in the past several comments here."

A lot of the comments you make on this subject are sweeping generalizations. These are very difficult to reply too and I am not sure that there is much point.

I am happy to answer any question you ask me.

"Subtract Darby, Scofield and Chafer from the scene and such a notion would not exist in christendom."

Subtract Augustine from the scene and we would not have Predestination to eternal life. Subtract Luther from the scene and we would not have forensic justification. This line of reasoning is pointless. As Bobby Grow points out, theology does not fall from heaven. It is developed by theologians in history.

"Further more, I believe that their system provides a neat little safe haven for those trying to flee from the clear Biblical teachings on Predestination."

Very interesting given that Darby was as Calvinistic as you are, if not more so.

There is a long histroy of resistance to Augustinianism that goes back way beyond Dispensationalism. The majority of Christians in Augustine's day rejected his new ideas. It was only in the middle ages that Augustinian theology became a significant force. Not all of the Reformers were happy with Augustinian views. Melancthon and Coeccius attempted to modify predestinarian theology before Arminius came on the scene.

"I find it deplorible how I have seen YOU handle John 6:36-65 saying that Jesus was trying to harden their hearts here so that they would crucify Him and that later He would draw them to him. Where did you get that notion from?"

I get this notion from the Bible. Jesus declared that after His death He would draw all men to Himself (John 12:32).

In Acts we find that the Gospel was offered to the whole nation of Israel:

Acts 2:39
"For the promise is unto you and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord shall call."

Acts 3:26
"Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from your sins."

"See now verse 40 "And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that every one who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day". If you dare to relagate these portions of John 6 (verses 36-65) to that period only then why not be consistant and put verse 40 only to that period too?"

That is a reasonable question.

Mark, I am glad you are finally engaging with my position instead of firing shots at Dispensationalism, which actually evades the real issue.

In answer to your question, I would refer you to John 20:31:

"But these are written, that ye (the reader) might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name."

In verse 29 of chapter 20, Jesus refers to those who have not seen His resurrction. It is these people to whom verse 31 is addressed.

"Now on to Romans 3:11-"There is none who understands;There is none who seeks after God" . This verse is all part of one train of thought with verse 23,"for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God". Yet, I have seen you use John 12:32 to try to wipe that verse out. Paul would not have bothered to quote Psalm 14:1-3 here had he seen things your way. Remember, he penned this verse post cross/resurrection/ascention. Why would he have bothered had the way you interpret John 12:32 been THE way to interpret it, effectively rendering Romans 3:11 non existant."

Mark, I do not recall using such a tactic. I think one needs to be careful in how one interprets this verse. I am not sure that Paul means that nobody ever seeks God at all, though that is a legitimate interpretation of this verse. Such an interpretation is compatible with my own view of depravity and grace.

The key issue is that this verse is not talking about the man who comes under the influence of Gospel preaching. It says that there is none that seeketh after God. Paul does not say 'there is none that respondeth to the preaching of the Gospel.'

"If Darby never existed then nobody would have dreamed of handling John 6 like you do."

This is speculation, especially given that Darby did not share my view of John 6.

"Classic Dispyism is nothing short of looking to the Old Testament as the ultimate in the revelation of God. I see it differently. I see the New Testament as the Ultimate revelation of God in the face of Christ. Classic Dispyism is Israel centric; New Covenant Theology is Christocentric, all the Covenants finding their fulfilment in Him.

In Classic dis. Christ is made to share center stage with the nation of Israel. In New Cov. Theology Christ alone is center stage, as it should be. All eyes should be on Christ and Him alone. Classic Dispyism invites us to also look at the nation of Israel. How wrong."

Mark, with respect I find it deplorable that you make these statements. They show a complete ignorance of Dispensationalism. I find it hard to believe that you have ever really understood Dispensationalism when you say such things.

If you actually took the trouble to read some Dispensational books (particularly Darby's writings), I am confident that you see the name of Christ much more often than the name Israel.

I am not sure where I would bgin in refuting the nonsense that you have written in those paragraphs about Dispensationalism.

Mark, I think you are a great brother, but I hate the way you misrepresent Dispensationalism.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 21, 2006 10:19 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: I hate Dispensationalism because it is man-made. I find it laughable that in the past 6 months Calvinism has been under attack, being called a work and construct of man; and all of this coming from a camp that is within another system devised by man! Most of the shots fired at Calvinism in these months have come from Classic dispyism.

Now, on to the root of my hatred for Classic Dispensationalism (CD). The CD churches in my area are slaves to Scofield's notes. He is the one who basically places the sermon on the mount for another people and another time. I look at Paul in Galations 4:19. Paul here is laboring in birth until Christ is formed in the believers there. In Colosians 3:16 Paul told those believers to let the word of Christ to dwell in them richly. In 2 Cor.3:18 as blievers behold "as in a mirror" (the scriptures) they are being transformed into Christ's image by the Holy Spirit. James tells us to be doers of the word. Put it all together and we see that time spent prayerfully in the word and meditation upon that word we shall be transformed into Christ's image.

Now, take away the sermon on the mount, as Scofield effectively does, and you take away a significant body of thought by which the Holy Spirit can use to conform us to Christ.

I am well aware that Darby was Cal. you pointed that out to me before, and I have also read that for myself. In fact, I am aware that that was a factor in his breaking fellowship with D.L.Moody during their Bible readings, where Darby closed his Bible and did not want to participate any longer due to Moody's not embracing Cal.

Now, in my "broad sweeping" charges against CD I noted that Muller parted ways with Darby because he could not find what Darby taught anywhere in the Bible. You never answered me on this matter. Muller found Darby's teachings so odious. What do you think about that?

Also, I asked you to show me where other preachers differ from Spurgeon and Hodges on,as you term it, passive faith. Please name names and where you think they differ.

Also, I made the charge that CD rips and tears the Bible apart, using portions of scripture to effectively wipe out the existance of other scriptures. .. Question: Where in church history did any theologin handle the scriptures like Darby did? Did he learn this from some earlier works?

Also, John 12:32 it is said that Jesus would draw all"Peoples" to Himself. NKJ. Surely, this wonderful fact is realized in Revelation 5:9..."And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation...". Remember, Jesus gives eternal life to all that the Father has given Him, "as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him", John17:2. Matthew, surely you do not believe that any that the Father has given to the Son will be lost, do you? For you to use John 12:32 as you have in your handling of John 6 is nothing other than speculation, employing a man-made technique in interpreting scripture.

You say "Paul does not say 'there is none that respondeth to the preaching of the Gospel.'

I say that the Bible clearly teaches that "light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil". Are you saying that some men are less captivated by their sins than are others? One is either a slave to sin or a slave to God,see Romans 6, there is no intermediate ground.

I have a Dispensational test for you: Answer me please and I will know where you stand...
- Questions -

If I do not turn the other cheek when slapped, am I guilty of disobedience to my Lord?

If I do not love my enemy, am I guilty of disobedience to my Lord?

If I do not bless those who curse me, and do good to those who hate me and pray for those who spitefully use me, am I guilty of disobedience to my Lord?

May 21, 2006 12:35 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: You say"Subtract Augustine from the scene and we would not have Predestination to eternal life. Subtract Luther from the scene and we would not have forensic justification."

Remember, these men were bringing the church back to its original beliefs, that was their God appointed tasks. They were merely bringing the church back to the scriptures, what was originally taught. These ideas of predestination and forensic justification did not originate with these men. They are original with the Bible. Remember,Jesus and Paul taught all these things. Augustine and Luther were rediscovering lost truths.

Yes Matthew, Paul was a predestinarian, Jesus being the original.

If not for human pride through the ages these perversions of "free will" and "forseen faith" would not have entered the scene.

May 21, 2006 12:58 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Also, when Spurgeon was exposed to the eschatalogical implications of Darby's theology he refered to it all as "speculative nonsense".

May 21, 2006 1:14 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

At the core of dispyism is the Israel/church distinction. I do not see that in the Bible. Why should I study the theology of that which I do not see its basis in the Bible.

Tomorrow I will put up the discussion between you and I from several weeks ago, as I said I would. The Spurgeon series is over.

May 21, 2006 1:23 PM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

Wow,
This comment thread is kind of dissapointing.

May 21, 2006 4:48 PM

 
Anonymous Sasser said...

Gosh - couldn't you just have put up another post for all this?

Good forearms though - that working out paid off.

May 21, 2006 8:17 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Brother,

I just want to say, that of all bloggers, I think you to be of the most in patience. Also you are very Christ centered. All of these posts have been Christ centered and you have blogged litte if any in regards to you position on Calvinism. You instead have called us to look to Christ in the middle of these all consuming debates and in many ways you have ministered to me and given me hope. You are a blessing. I think we can all agree on that. I think we should all give place to what little you do debate when you do. You have been a testimony to me. I think you have a right to defend your position on your blog.

May 21, 2006 9:41 PM

 
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Brian, Mark has indeed shown much patience and I agree that he has every right to defend his position on his blog. I am grateful to him for allowing me to debate this issue with him. However, as James White argued that Dave Hunt consistently misrepresented Calvinism, I believe Mark has done much to misprepresent Dispensationalism in this discussion. This is not at all helpful.

Mark,

You really do not liek the Scofield Bible do you? Have you noticed the increasing popularity of the MacArthur Study Bible? There seems to be a lot of zeal to promote that.

I would like to point out that Darby wrote many commentaries on the Synoptic Gospels. There is much Brethren writing on the Synoptics. Dispensationalists study the whole Word of God, as do other Christians.

The Sermon on the Mount is deeply edifying and it is very relevant to the Christian life.

"Muller found Darby's teachings so odious. What do you think about that?"

Muller disagreed with Darby's doctrine of the pre-Trib rapture. I agree with Muller in rejecting Pre-Tribulationalism. However, in other areas, I agree with Darby.

You do not seem fully aware of the cirrcumstances of Muller's conflict with Darby. They actually fell out over Muller's alleged failure to repudiate false teaching on the person of Christ. Darby urged the excommunication of Muller on account of this, not his eschatology. Whether Muller (Open Brethren) or Darby (Exclusive Brethren) was in the right is a complex historical issue.

"Also, I asked you to show me where other preachers differ from Spurgeon and Hodges on,as you term it, passive faith. Please name names and where you think they differ."

Wayne Grudem (Systematic Theology, p.710) talks about faith as a decision. Louis Berkhof (Systematic Theology, p.505) identifies a volitional element to faith.

"Where in church history did any theologin handle the scriptures like Darby did? Did he learn this from some earlier works?"

Darby's hermeneutical method was quite original.

With regard to John 12:32, what you are doing is eisegesis. Jesus is talking about 'all men', not 'all peoples'. There is nothing in the context to indicate that 'all peoples' is what Jesus means.

The drawing in John 12:32 is clearly distinct from the drawing of John 6 because it is referred to in the future tense and because of its extended scope. There is nothing in the context of John 12 to indicate that this drawing did not include some who were not given to Christ by the Father.

"I say that the Bible clearly teaches that "light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil". Are you saying that some men are less captivated by their sins than are others? One is either a slave to sin or a slave to God,see Romans 6, there is no intermediate ground."

There is nothing in this that proves that men are unable to respond to the preaching of the Gospel. You are reading ideas into the texts you quote that are simply not there.


"If I do not turn the other cheek when slapped, am I guilty of disobedience to my Lord?"

Paul gives us another expression of this principle in Romans 12:17-21. Note that he says live peaceably with all men IF POSSIBLE in verse 18.

In many circumstances the application of Jesus' teaching would be mandatory. However, if we were to always apply it, no Christian could serve as a Police or Prison officer. It may be that you think Christians should not serve as Police or Prison officers. If that be so, I respect your position.

The principles of Romans 12:17-21 would cover the other quotations from the Sermon on the Mount that you raise.

"Augustine and Luther were rediscovering lost truths."

Well, maybe Darby also discovered some lost truths as well.

Every Blessing in Christ

Matthew

May 22, 2006 5:21 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew: you say, "With regard to John 12:32, what you are doing is eisegesis. Jesus is talking about 'all men', not 'all peoples'. There is nothing in the context to indicate that 'all peoples' is what Jesus means.

The drawing in John 12:32 is clearly distinct from the drawing of John 6 because it is referred to in the future tense and because of its extended scope. There is nothing in the context of John 12 to indicate that this drawing did not include some who were not given to Christ by the Father."

-------
First off, the scope of Christ's sacrifice is presented to us in John 10:11,15-16,26-29. He lays His life down for His Sheep whom His Father has given Him.
-------
"The drawing in John 12:32 is clearly distinct from the drawing of John 6 because it is referred to in the future tense and because of its extended scope. There is nothing in the context of John 12 to indicate that this drawing did not include some who were not given to Christ by the Father.
-------

Matthew, I say you are engaging in pure speculation here. Nowhere in the Bible does it teach that men who are not given to the Son will come to Him. See what Jesus says in the future,"Here am I and the children whom God has given me".

For you to ignore the scope of what Jesus is saying in John 17:2
"that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him" is for you to read into the Bible what is not there. Clearly, only those given to Christ will come, nowhere in the Bible does it teach otherwise.
----------

say that the Bible clearly teaches that "light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil". Are you saying that some men are less captivated by their sins than are others? One is either a slave to sin or a slave to God,see Romans 6, there is no intermediate ground."

There is nothing in this that proves that men are unable to respond to the preaching of the Gospel. You are reading ideas into the texts you quote that are simply not there.

--------

Matthew, I was not talking about "unable" but, rather, unwilling. Yes, hostility towards God is in view here. Men do not want to come to the light because they love their sins more than the light.

Such was my state. Had God not stepped in and Regenerated me I would have gone on loving my sins and rejecting Him. I would not have wanted His rule or His claims in my life. I would much rather have gone on in my love of violence, and my lust for women. They were too fun. Christ would have been an obstical.

--------
In many circumstances the application of Jesus' teaching would be mandatory. However, if we were to always apply it, no Christian could serve as a Police or Prison officer. It may be that you think Christians should not serve as Police or Prison officers. If that be so, I respect your position.

The principles of Romans 12:17-21 would cover the other quotations from the Sermon on the Mount that you raise.

------

Matthew, I am well nigh embracing New Cov. Theology. I view the whole New Testament as "The Law of Christ" of which the Sermon On The Mount is a part. I will agree that the whole New Testament be consulted when formulating a view.

My own daughter wants to be a policewoman.

I will go look at Grudem now. Thanks for responding.

May 22, 2006 8:55 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Rose: on your last series, in the first post, on the comments on that post, you said that calvinism casts a shadow on God and that you had rejected that system. That was fine, it is your blog and your opinion. I did not enter in and remark how disappointing that thread was.

This is my blog and my opinions. I have used much restraint in these months, not getting upset when people accuse my kind of people of preaching a false gospel or whether we are even saved. I did not see anyone from your side of the isle remark about how disappointing those threads were. Not once.

I have tried to be a peace maker between the two camps. Yes, there are times when i have spoken out of anger, and for that, I am sorry. But, an email that I got recently has shown me how foolhardy I was in seeking to bring peace. I was told that I was one of those who does not like to see subjects brought up because it might bring disunity. I found myself isolated in my endeavers to bring peace. I was a fool. I was wrong. I shall now join my calvinist brethren in defending "The Doctrins Of Grace".

Brian: Thanks for your support.

May 22, 2006 9:31 AM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Matthew:Grudem says on page 710 "I must decide to depend on Jesus to save me personally" and "This definition emphasizes that saving faith is not just a belief in the facts but in personal trust in Jesus to save me".

As I have stated earlier in this thread Spurgeon looks back at the day he came to Christ as the day that he surrendered his life totally to Christ. Throughout his autobiography he emphasizes over and over again that that was the day he gave his life to Christ in totall surrender. I do not see any inconsistancies here.

May 22, 2006 10:06 AM

 
Blogger Rose~ said...

Mark,
You know I think a great deal of you (not that I sit in judgement of anyone).
What I find dissapointing is the lack of understanding that we have for one another.

It uses some scriptures to effectively wipe out other scriptures. It is perversion.

Mark, you say you have used much restraint. You know.

You say that I said this on my blog: calvinism casts a shadow on God and that you had rejected that system.

I have done MANY posts on Calvinism. MANY. Is this the worst statement that I have made about C in all those posts? I think I really explained myself as to why I believe it casts a shadow on God, this teaching. Have I ever called it perversion? I would never say that on my blog because I would not want to offend my brothers and sisters who are Calvinists. I have made it clear that I don't get it from the Bible, but I have also tried to understand it. I am not trying to say here that I am above reproach - I know I am not. But, I have called you reasonable because I thought of you as someone who respected others who were different than you.

Now, I see you say this:
using a portion of scripture to wipe out another portion of scripture is nothing short of mutilation of God's word.

Is this what you think of me? (Remember - I am a classic dispensationalist)

You're right - it is your blog and you can do what you want. I am just telling you as a friend how it comes across - which you have always been welcome to do on my blog - if I keep it open. (This I am reconsidering.)

I found myself isolated in my endeavers to bring peace. I was a fool. I was wrong. I shall now join my calvinist brethren in defending "The Doctrines Of Grace".

So - you were the only one trying to understand others?

Jesus prayed in John 17 (which you recently quoted) that we might all be one. Is this foolish? Is this wrong? Disagreeing is one thing - but accusing other Christians of mutilating the word of God and perversley wiping out Scriptures is another.

May 22, 2006 12:50 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

I'll pray for you Mark as I agree with so much that you write, just remember the heart of Whitfield. Also this guy Terry Rayburn is a Calvinist and supports TULIP, but he has a heart for God unlike many I encouter. You do too. I know it is hard to bear up under the last few months worth of onslaught and misrepresentation...but remember the heart of Whitfield and note that he grew harsher towards Wesley after being around Jonathan Edwards, so keep your heart brother. I understand what you are going through. Hang in there. Read Terry Rayburns site here Keeping yourselves in the Love of God

Both you and he have been a testimony to me.

May 22, 2006 6:16 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

BTW,

Wesley preached Whitfields funeral and it is there that he said, "Can anything but love, beget love."

Never forget that Jesus wept over Jerusalem for missing and not hearing. Just because he doesn't always elect, does not mean he doesn't weep and there will always be a mystery there. It was the Pharisees that didn't want men to be healed, but it was Jesus who told them that they even save an ox on the Sabbath and that a man is of more value than an animal. No I am not trying to preach self esteem, but I am trying to point out that even though Gods jealous wrath burns against fallen man...it is just that Jealous wrath. He loves the whole world and pities it, even though his redemption is particular(I like to call it that instead of limited) and specific, he still weeps over fallen man, even when his wrath burns. Who can know the mind of God, but scripture clearly bears this out. A good movie to help us understand this is the war movie "To End All Wars"

May 22, 2006 6:24 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

BTW,

You are no fool. You are a solid man of God. We are all endeavoring to find balance. I am certainley not one to talk. I think you have more balance than I though. I've been a bit like a yoyo, but am now coming to see the need for consistancey in what I believe and holding fast unapologetically. I think you have been a solid lighthouse all throughout. We know where you stand and I stand very close to your position.

May 22, 2006 6:36 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Brian: Thank you for for all that you have said. I especially like your 3:24 pm comment. It is, in my estimation, perfectly balanced.

Thank you.

May 23, 2006 7:55 AM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

Amen. Good to see. and thanks Marc. I think Rose is going through her own struggles with the some in her camp and I appreciate her stand in believing one must believe in the Person of Christ to be saved. We need to pray for her. There are also some Calvinists that go off on other extremes of "Hyper Calvinism". You are not one of them. I guess what I'm trying to say is maintain your independent spirit and love for truth, choose when you need to seperate, but don't cut to far. I have been struggling over this as well. You both are a blessing

May 23, 2006 5:53 PM

 
Blogger Bhedr said...

BTW, that movie "To End All Wars" is violent in that it shows Japenese soldiers torturing POW's of which some became Christians. Unfortunately they throw some budhism in the end, but the movie is about Christ and the line between Justice and Mercy. Its not a perfect movie, but a very powerful word picture. There is some language as well, but personally I am one of those who rationalizes that as being part of war. Unfortunately it is. I was in the Marines. I need to get a DVD like my Pastor has. It self edits movies as they watch. They must be expensive.

May 23, 2006 6:03 PM

 

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