[We are] not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Logical vs Theological Necessity

by Antonio da Rosa

I wrote this post in comment to Earl over at Rose's blog. I thought it would be beneficial here as well.

Matthew doesn't see how my logical versus theological discussion makes things clear. I am at a loss for words here. It seems very simple to me and makes me amaze how people are scratching their heads about it.
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Logical necessity is a valid distinction from theological necessity.

Not everyone has logical necessities to faith in Christ. And again, not everyone would necessarily have the same logical necessities.

For instance:

A ticket to a baseball game is all that is necessary FROM THE VIEW OF THE STADIUM for entrance into the baseball game.

A man living a block away may walk to the game and not incur any additional monetary necessities in order to actually step foot into the game.

A man living a 4 miles away may have to take a trolley and incur some more monetery debt to step foot into the game or he may put on his jogging shoes and run there.

A man living in another city may have to drive there (incurring gas cost) and park there (incurring parking cost) as a logical necessity to going to the baseball game or he could carpool with a ride from a friend, and incur no additional monetary necessity to enter the game.

A man living in another state may have to fly in by airplane, take a taxi from the airport, shack up in a hotel, and bus in from the hotel in order to step foot into the stadium, which by the way, only requires a ticket for entrance. Or this man could leave a week in advance, hitchhike to the city, sleep in a sleeping bag on the side of the street by the stadium, and eat at rescue missions, and thus incur no extra monetery necessity OTHER than the purchase price of the ticket.

Each person in the world is at a different subjective state in relation and relativity to the exercise of faith in Christ.

But the one and only requirement by God is that one exercise simple faith in the promise of Christ for eternal life.

How one gets to that point, well, there may be various logical necessities (and they don't even have to be an absolute program for the same person -- just think of how many routes you can take from your office to your home).

Repentance may indeed be a logical necessity to faith in Christ for some people. Yet it is not a necessary requirement for eternal life.

The man at the stadium does not require anything but the ticket for entrance. God does not require anything but one receive eternal life by the passive instrumentality of simple faith alone into Christ. How the man actually gets to the point where he can purchase the ticket and get his body to the stadium, how the man prepares himself and/or is prepared by external circumstances for faith in Christ IS AN ABSOLUTELY SUBJECTIVE CONSIDERATION WITH MANY DIFFERENT SCENARIOS.
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Jesus says:

Luke 13:23-25
And He said to them,"Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able."

Man is to use any means by which to find the entrance and actually enter into the narrow gate.

We know that Jesus is the narrow gate and that entrance into the narrow gate is through faith alone.

I hope this helps.

Antonio

29 Comments:

  • Antonio, thanks for the post! I'll ponder this.

    By Blogger Earl, at Thursday, August 24, 2006 7:42:00 PM  

  • I do not disagree with your reasoning or your conclusion.

    I am just not entirely comfortable with the terminology you have chosen to use.

    I agree with your conclusion so I will not argue over your choice of terms.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Friday, August 25, 2006 12:29:00 AM  

  • I had some typos in my previous response.

    Antonio, I am going to deal with the use of the words "logical necessity" in what you are trying to say, and not with repentence per se. When logical necessity is used in every other disciple, it means that it is a universal condition that must be satisfied for the consequent to happen. So, when you say that repentence is a logical necessity for some to arrive at a subjective state for faith, you are not using the words logical necessity in the same way everyone else uses it. Logical necessity, the way everyone else uses it, is the way you connect faith to justification. Faith in Christ is a logical necessity for justification. Without faith, there is no justification. This condition holds for all people.

    When you use logical necessity in connecting repentence to faith, as you do in this blog, under the standard definition this would say for every person, if they exercise faith, it was logically necessary for them to repent. This is not the intent of what you are saying. That is why we are scratching our heads.

    Am I making myself understandable on this? As I say, I am not dealing with the issue of repentence and faith. I am just dealing with the use of the term logical necessity.

    By Blogger Earl, at Friday, August 25, 2006 4:03:00 PM  

  • ...I am having problems. When I said, "When logical necessity is used in every other disciple" I meant to say "When logical necessity is used in every other discipline"

    By Blogger Earl, at Friday, August 25, 2006 5:15:00 PM  

  • Antonio, you've stated that Robbins and Clark support Zane Hodges. This comment deals with the very narrow issue of whether they support that position. Let me quote from John W. Robbins, a disciple of Gordon Clark, and the editor of the Trinity Review regarding repentence and faith:

    "To believe the Gospel is to believe that "Christ died for our sins." It involves a change of mind about both Christ and ourselves. The two cannot be separated, for they are part of one proposition. We are not saved by believing the proposition "Christ died." We are saved by the Gospel, which includes the proposition, "Christ died for our sins." The act of faith is the act of repentance. The fact that the Gospel of John does not use the word "repent" but does use the word "believe" – a fact which Zane Hodges has made much of -- does not imply that repentance is not necessary; it simply means that repentance and belief are the same thing. If theologians would pay attention to the Bible rather than repeating the errors of other theologians, controversies like this might be avoided."
    (http://www.trinityfoundation.org/PDF/098a-TheGospelAccordingtoJohnMacArthur.pdf)

    I cite this because you've implied that both John Robbins and Gordon Clark endorsed Zane Hodge's view of repentence and faith. That is not the case.

    I have not presented a case against Zane Hodges in this comment, merely that John Robbins and Gordon Clark disagree with Zane Hodges position.

    By Blogger Earl, at Friday, August 25, 2006 5:50:00 PM  

  • What I have stated, Earl, is that Gordon Clark and John Robbins take an approach to faith that is widely compatible with Free Grace theology.

    Both Zane Hodges and Bob Wilkin endorse Gordon Clarks book "Faith and Saving Faith".

    Bob Wilkin has had permission on several occasions to print John Robbins articles in his Journal and his website.

    I may be wrong, but I do not recollect Gordon Clark speaking about repentance in his book "Faith and Saving Faith".

    It is apparant that John Robbins takes the "change of mind view" concerning repentance.

    It is apparant to me that a consideration of children falsifies the idea that a change of mind is necessary for faith.

    Children do not have a mind to change concerning Jesus Christ. They hear the gospel in a sort of theological and mental vacuum. They have not even heard about such matters nor have they considered them.

    They are told the gospel and at that moment they will either be convinced or left unpersuaded. If they are convinced, they would have not needed to change a mind. They didn't have one to change on the matter to begin with!

    But to get back to the point I make about Gordon Clark. The main emphasis and thrust of his doctrine of faith is completley compatible with Free Grace theology's view, and we point people to his book as a representation of what we believe.

    Many Free Grace people believe that repentance is a mere change of mind and therefore is necessary for faith in Christ. Bob Wilkin wrote his Ph.D. dissertation on this at Dallas Seminary. Zane Hodges also used to advocate this.

    The consideration of change of mind, when viewed in its rightful place, is a very small matter when it comes to the discussion of faith. I will agree that in many instances that it occurs. But it is not a universal requirement for faith as demonstrated with the consideration of children hearing the gospel and being told about Jesus for the first time.

    Gordon Clarks book on faith I heartily reccomend.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Friday, August 25, 2006 6:06:00 PM  

  • Anotonio,

    I am not defending a particular position on repentence and faith at this moment. I am trying to state Gordon Clark's view on the topic. I can see that John Robbins' view of repentence is change of mind. What this precisely means in their minds could be refined further. Both Clark and Robbins are teaching elders in (or was for the late Gordon Clark) conservative Presbyterian denominations. That means they passed exams at their respective presbyteries (and I've been a part of similar exams) where they had to identify exceptions they took to the Westminster Confession of Faith. Knowing the backgound of these men, they would not take exception to chapter 15 -- Of Repentence Unto Life. Here is what the Confession says:

    "1. Repentance unto life is an evangelical grace, the doctrine whereof is to be preached by every minister of the Gospel, as well as that of faith in Christ.

    2. By it, a sinner, out of the sight and sense not only of the danger, but also of the filthiness and odiousness of his sins, as contrary to the holy nature, and righteous law of God; and upon the apprehension of His mercy in Christ to such as are penitent, so grieves for, and hates his sins, as to turn from them all unto God, purposing and endeavouring to walk with Him in all the ways of His commandments.

    3. Although repentance is not to be rested in, as any satisfaction for sin, or any cause of the pardon thereof, which is the act of God's free grace in Christ, yet it is of such necessity to all sinners, that none may expect pardon without it."

    Again, I am not defending the Westminster Confession's view of repentence, or the necessity of repentence. I am simply showing what these men believe.

    An article by Clark on faith is found at: http://www.trinityfoundation.org/journal.php?id=102

    I've read the article and the word repentence is not emphasized. But Clark needs to be put in his context, which is conservative Presbyterianism, in which he subscribes to the Westminster Confession of Faith. The issue of repentence and faith was not as much of a controversy during Clark's life, as it is during Robbins' life, who is a disciple of Clark.

    If the Westminster Confession's view of repentence is compatable with FG Theology, then Clark's full view of the subject is compatable with FG Theology. So, my question then, is the Westminster Confession's view of repentence compatable with FG Theology?

    Again, I am not defending the WCF's view of repentence (even though I subscribe to it), I'm curious if it is comaptable, in your mind to FG Theology.

    Thank you for your generous time with me. It is very helpful.

    By Blogger Earl, at Friday, August 25, 2006 8:27:00 PM  

  • Concerning Gordon Clark,

    I feel that you are stating hypothesis contrary to fact.

    To me, if Gordon Clark is going to write a book on faith, entitled "Faith and Saving Faith" it would seem clear to me that he would include the major components of his position in regards to faith therein.

    I read his book some time ago, but not much would come to mind that I would disagree with. As I recall, I have a newer printing (all the same text, and unchanged) that has John Robbins notes in the margins.

    Concerning Gordon Clark's masterful work contained in Faith and Saving Faith, I am happy to give my endorsement.

    But your contentions concerning your associations of Mr. Clark with the Westminster Confession and that John Robbins is a disciple of Clarks seems like mere conjecture.

    Nevertheless, however any conclusions are made based upon investigation into these matters, I would make two points:

    1) I endorse Gordon Clark's book.

    2) It should go without question that I disagree with the Westminster Confession articles on repentance in its relation to eternal salvation.

    I am not aware that Gordon Clark mentions repentance nor the confession articles on repentance in his book where he discloses his position and take on the doctrine of faith.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, August 26, 2006 2:24:00 PM  

  • I am not disputing that Robbins is a disciple, but that just because he is a disciple and holds a view on certain things, that Gordon must have held the same convictions.

    Also,

    it is apparant to me as a glaring, bold, and unmissable fact:

    The mere change of mind view on repentance is squarely at odds and variance with the Westminster Confession articles on repentance.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, August 26, 2006 2:26:00 PM  

  • ...yes, that's what I thought too, that the WCF is incompatable with FG theology.

    About Gordon Clark, it's really a mute point for the important part of your discussion. I think that if you, and Zane Hodges, and others endorse his book, it means that what Clark actually wrote in his book is in large agreement with FG. Whether or not Clark would actually draw the same conclusions as the FG people would is ambiguous from that book. Gordon Clark also wrote a commentary on the Westminster Confession of Faith, which is fully available on the Web (entitiled, "What Presbyterians Believe" or something similar).

    Now, if I could convince you that Gordon Clark did hold to the WCF at that point, it really doesn't make a hill of beans of difference to whether or not you find Clark's book on faith agreeable. All I am pointing out is that Clark is probably not a FG patron saint, which in the scheme of these discussions is not very important.

    Now, one thing I'll point out about myself, I subscribe to those sticky points in the WCF. I think it is very useful to identify differences and make them sharp and clear. If nothing else, the future iron sharpening iron can be benificial for us both. I know my interactions with you sharpen what I think, which I really appreciate.

    By Blogger Earl, at Saturday, August 26, 2006 6:19:00 PM  

  • How do you entertain compatability between the WCF and the change of mind view of repentance? How can that be resolved? How can one, without the creation of mental dissonance, hold to both?

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, August 26, 2006 8:27:00 PM  

  • (Chuckle) ...probably because I repented from that definition of repentence. :o)

    But, more seriously, I tend to try to be agreeable when I can be. The problem is that I can make things fuzzy, which is not good. So now I am trying to sharpen the distinction between you and me, so you know where I stand. I would like to explore the distinction.

    Now here is a question for you: does the "change of mind" repentence simply involve the intellect? Does that repentence not touch the other parts? We're talking about changing our mind about ourselves in understanding sin, that we've deeply offended a rightious God, unjustly caused Jesus to die an undescribably horrid death. Will this change of mind simply be, "oh yeah, Jesus is right, I was wrong, he paid for my sin, YAWN, ho mum, I agree now."? Is that the kind of change of mind we're talking about here? I don't think John Robbins is talking about that kind.

    You have asked rhetorically in your conversations with others what degree of repetence is needed? When is there enough repentence? The same can be asked about faith. How much faith? Faith without a speck of doubt whatsoever? Thank God we have a story of Jesus answering the faith of a man who cried, "I believe, but help my unbelief!" It doesn't take much faith. It doesn't take perfect faith. The same is true with repentence. As many old Purtian prayers for believers say, God forgive us of our faltering faith, forgive us of our pathetic repentence.

    Secondly, sometimes people will confuse penance with repentance (or accuse the other side of using penance). No one is talking about penance -- that is works.

    So, while I want to step out and show the difference between FG and the WCF view of repentence, I also want to prevent possible overstatement of the difference.

    By Blogger Earl, at Saturday, August 26, 2006 9:06:00 PM  

  • Let me just chime in and say, that it's not about "mind" change, it's all about heart change (II Cor 3). Repentance as "mind change" is a theological reading of the text of scripture.

    In Christ

    By Blogger Bobby Grow, at Sunday, August 27, 2006 12:54:00 PM  

  • Whats happening I believe Bobby is that we are undergoing a mind change while God is changing our hearts in the New Birth. This is what scripture teaches. So you are correct in that a change of heart is occuring.

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Sunday, August 27, 2006 7:37:00 PM  

  • Brian,

    I still believe that man has "freedom of choice", thus the requirement for a heart change to ocurr prior to any mind or will change. I think what you're saying might align with the Calvinist understanding a bit.

    By Blogger Bobby Grow, at Sunday, August 27, 2006 8:31:00 PM  

  • Actually brother I am closer to free grace in understanding that you are being persuaded and at the point of that persuasion the new birth is occuring in a change of mind(repenting of former faithless thoughts) and then the heart is being created anew by God. We do not have the ability to change our hearts, but somewhere in there with faith we are being persuaded and convinced of the truth and as a result our hearts change in the new birth.

    The mind is the battlefield and ours is carnal but it is being persuaded and convinced by the words of God.

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Monday, August 28, 2006 7:11:00 PM  

  • The ears hear first! The mind hears the word of God. There is some creedence to Antonios view. Where I differ from him is that he doesnt seem to give much place to the power of the new heart and the will born in the new creation.

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Monday, August 28, 2006 7:17:00 PM  

  • I didnt realize that we differed here Bobby but perhaps we do. Still I think Affective Theology is closer to what I think than Calvinism and that has to do with other areas.

    didn't Luthers mind change when he heard what he had read so much with "The just shall live by faith" ?

    Ahhh what a wonderful liberating truth. Huh?

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Monday, August 28, 2006 7:19:00 PM  

  • Hi Antonio,

    Good post :)

    It's fun to commment on a post of yours again... After my summer vacation...

    I am fasciniated by Hodges take on Acts 17. That repentance is needed from false gods as a sort of pre-evangelism, in order to not just pull Christ into a pantheon of dieties.

    This is the context that makes your comments about other things being needed (so to speak, at least subjectively speaking) make sense to me.

    God bless...

    :)

    By Blogger H K Flynn, at Monday, August 28, 2006 9:22:00 PM  

  • Hey Jodie,

    thanks alot for your comment. If you haven't already noticed, I have done a lot of writing concerning repentance and Acts 17.

    I am not too sure that Zane understands the specific application of repentance in Acts 17 to be given "in order to not just pull Christ into a pantheon of dieties.". You would have to show me where in his writings this is his point.

    There may be some intimation concerning this, and I would agree that this would be a concern post-regeneration to continue in harmony with God.

    But as a pre-condition for eternal life, Zane would NOT agree, that I am sure.

    He states that the purpose thus:

    "Obviously, the pagan idolatry of Paul's hearers stood in the way of their turning to the true and living God in faith. No one who believed in the worship of images was properly prepared to accept the exclusive claims of the Creator and of His Son, Jesus Christ." (Harmony, 84-85, emphasis mine).

    Idolatry is a hindrance to faith, not a universal preclusion.

    Believing that Christ guarantees your eternal well-being is the irreducible minimum to saving faith. It may be highly unlikely, but not impossible for someone who believes in other gods to nevertheless believe Jesus Christ's exclusive claims to eternal life and resurrection.

    It is inconsistent to say the least to require repentance of idolatry but not any or all other sin as a theological necessary condition to faith.

    Repentance in no way required by God as a necessary theological condition for eternal life.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 3:32:00 PM  

  • Brother Antonio,

    I am not going to try to mischaracterize you here:

    >It may be highly unlikely, but not impossible for someone who believes in other gods to nevertheless believe Jesus Christ's exclusive claims to eternal life and resurrection.<

    But will you allow me to make a logical conclusion?

    How is it possible to believe in other gods and believe in the one true God at the same time? Is that not an oxymoron to say that you can exclusively believe in Jesus alone for salvation while believing in other gods? Was this not the whole foundation of assimilation of other gods by Constantine into Christianity and the start of Roman Catholicism? Have you kinda done a full circle and met back up with the back door of Rome?

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 5:47:00 PM  

  • Antonio, let me jump back in on repentence with a little interesting piece of information from the perspective of the Westminster Confession of Faith. I know you're not a fan of the WCF, but this does have some bearing on our discussion of Gordon Clark. Reformed people, and Prespbyterians in particular, seem to view faith and repentence in one of two ways:

    (a) It is inseperately joined together (a view that I tend to take). In other words, repentence is a part of faith, and faith is a part of repentence. Take either one away and it is like "one hand clapping".

    (b) Faith and repentence are seperate. Faith is what justifies, repentence is among the very first activities of sanctification. In this view, strictly speaking, repentence has no part in justification.

    Both views are taken by those who subscribe to the Wesminter Confession. How can people who take view (b) also support the WCF? the answer is you read it like a lawyer, very carefully. Item 1 of the section on Saving Faith says:

    "The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls"

    The Confession says that faith is what saves. If we closely look at item 3 on Repentence:

    "3. Although repentance is not to be rested in, as any satisfaction for sin, or any cause of the pardon thereof, which is the act of God's free grace in Christ, yet it is of such necessity to all sinners, that none may expect pardon without it."

    We see that repentence is not the cause of being pardoned. But what about, "yet it is of such necessity to all sinners, that none may expect pardon without it."? Those who hold to position (b) see that the WCF says that repentence is the natural fruit of faith and justification, so that while it is not the cause of being pardoned, it will follow and give evidence of being pardoned.

    It's like the phrase, where there's smoke, there's fire. Smoke is not the cause of the fire, nor is smoke the cause of things being burned. However, smoke is the evidence of fire.

    How does this fit in with Gordon Clark? Gordon Clark, it is quite evident, took view (b). This is a very traditional view among conservative Presbyterians. If you read the late John Murray, of Westminster Seminary (one of my favorite theologians), many of his works on justification don't speak of repentence. Yet, if you listen to his seminary lectures, he speaks of repentence in the believer's life, taking position (b). The same goes for Gordon Clark. I've talked with people who took classes from him at Covenant College at Lookout Mountain, Georgia. Gordon Clark appears to have taken position (b), since he talked about repentence in his classes, and because of the requirement of Covenant College for its professors to subscribe to the WCF.

    This discussion does not really have any real relevence to the topic at hand, and it really does not effect the FG position in the slightest. It's just an interesting footnote (to me) as a Reformed guy interested in your discussions here.

    By Blogger Earl, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 6:32:00 PM  

  • Brian,

    saving faith is taking Jesus Christ at His word in the gospel promise/offer.

    Jesus says "Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life".

    Saving faith then is believing that Christ has given me eternal life by trusting Him for it.

    He does not ask us to check off a list of doctrines in order to be saved.

    He asks that we believe Him concerning His guarantee to give eternal life and resurrect the one who trusts Him for it.

    Brian, what does it mean to "believe in the one True God"? This seems some kind of ambiguous, subjective statement.

    Roman Catholics in many senses believe in the one True God. They are not saved by this faith.

    Believing correct doctrine will not save anyone unless it is the proposition of the gospel offer.

    Belief that Jesus guarantees your eternal well-being and belief that there are other gods are not mutually exclusive. You may hold both beliefs at the same time. I admit that this is merely a possibility and is surely not normative.

    As a parallel thought for consideration.

    Can someone believe Jesus for eternal life, trust him alone for eternal life, but at the same time hold out that the heathen may have another option?

    Some may say no. But I would say why not? As long as the person believes that Jesus gave him eternal life when he believed His promise, why not? Therefore both beliefs, as well, are not mutually exclusive.

    My mom has trusted into Jesus Christ alone as her only hope of salvation yet at the same time holds out hope that God may have other options for the heathen.

    She has trusted into Jesus and the other belief does not intrude, dilute, nor abbrogate her faith alone into Jesus alone for eternal life.

    The same with someone who may believe that other gods exist yet trust into Jesus as their only sure hope of eternal well-being.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 6:32:00 PM  

  • Earl.

    Position B is better than position A. But A has its problems as well:

    without repentance hell is certain.

    It remains inexorably linked to final salvation.

    Position b would say that repentance would be a fruit of faith, a necessary result.

    If no repentance, then one goes to hell.

    A necessary result is the same as a condition.

    Let me continue.

    The article you quote from the WCF on repentance is clearly internally inconsistent.

    You cannot receive pardon without repentance, but it is not the cause of the pardon and is not to be rested in. This is contradictory.

    How can repentance be essential, a "necessity to all sinners", and yet not be rested in and seen as a cause of pardon? If it is essential and one cannot be pardoned apart from it, then it most definitely, unless one's logic comes from la-la-land, must be seen as a sort of cause. It meets a requirement for pardon. It may not be the ultimate Cause (God), but it nonetheless is CAUSAL. Furthermore, when a sinner is told that repentance is necessary for pardon, how can he not rest the apprehension of his pardon upon his exercise of repentance?

    Much learning made the contributors to the WCF mad!

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 6:51:00 PM  

  • (chuckle), yeah, I knew you weren't a fan. :o)

    I'm sure I'm going to sound like Clinton to you when he said it all depends on what "is" is.

    I've noticed in your discussions you don't allow for signs that result from an action as being just that, signs that something else took place. That is how "necessity" is used in that paragraph. Gordon Clark allowed such things.

    I'll bow out of the discussion now. Thanks for the enjoyable discussion. Its been helpful and edifying for me.

    By Blogger Earl, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 7:17:00 PM  

  • Earl,

    dont bow out!

    You have been giving me essential information and greater clarity and perspective.

    Here is an illustration that I want you to consider:

    Consider the marriage requirements in this country. If a man is to get married, he must have a blood test. Now it is clear that someone could break the law or, perhaps, some state does not require this. However, the author shall create a fictional world where this is always true. Then we can say the condition of getting married is a mutual commitment to do so. Furthermore, the necessary and inevitable result of that commitment is a trip to the hospital to get a blood test. In addition, getting a blood test is a condition of getting married. A necessary result is no different than a condition! I could then observe to a friend that, “A blood test is a condition of getting married.” He may then say, “No, securing a blood test is not a condition of getting married but a necessary result of a commitment to get married.” But here now you may be able to see that the blood test is both a result and a condition.

    (taken from Joseph Dillow, the Reign of the Servant Kings)

    Do you see how this illustration can put the "repentance necessity" into perspective?

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Tuesday, August 29, 2006 9:43:00 PM  

  • Hey brother Antonio,

    Are you sure about this?
    >Roman Catholics in many senses believe in the one True God.<

    They believe in Mary who in reality is Estarte' with origins from the Babylonian religion. The saints they believe in as well. These are all Gods to them. This leads them to not trust in God but in their own understanding and works. It is my core conviction that when the soul knows who has saving power that then and only then can they trust Him alone. The one true God Jesus Christ. Him alone. You cannot believe in these other gods and say that you are trusting in Christ alone. That is my conviction and belief. Scripture makes this crystal clear that he and that we must look to Him to be saved. WE cannot compromise this truth. I know you believe this brother. Please consider the importance of this for the sake of others.

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Wednesday, August 30, 2006 1:24:00 PM  

  • Or maybe you spell her name Astarte' Can't remember.

    Also brother. Your mother seems to hold to Billy Grahams same belief. Would you consider that her input may affect you subjectively.

    I know this is a sensitive area but I feel pressed to ask you to consider.

    By Blogger Bhedr, at Wednesday, August 30, 2006 2:15:00 PM  

  • Antonio, I saw your request for me to stay in. I'm tight on time, part of the reason for me to bow out. I've got to be very brief, I might have more time in a few days.

    We're talking about scenario (b):

    (b) Faith and repentence are seperate. Faith is what justifies, repentence is among the very first activities of sanctification. In this view, strictly speaking, repentence has no part in justification.

    This puts the following sequence:

    Faith -> Justification -> Sanctification begins -> Repentence

    Your analogy is:

    Commitment -> blood test -> marriage

    In senario (b), repentence comes after justification and the beginning of sanctification. Therefore repentence cannot be viewed as a cause of justification. The marriage/blood test analogy does not fit the pattern of senario (b), hence it does not apply.

    Comments? (Remember, I am busy the next few days and may not be able to read your comments quickly.)

    By Blogger Earl, at Wednesday, August 30, 2006 9:17:00 PM  

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