[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)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Peter on election

by HK FLynn

Over at Pulpit, 2 Peter 1 was brought up~ the make your calling and election sure passage~to defend the MacArthur model against a wonderful onslaught by Bobby Grow. That passage used to be a foundational proof text for the Puritans, but it has never taken on the same status for people like MacArthur and Piper. Probably this is because, in the interest of diplomacy, the word "election" isn't dangled in the forefront of their theology anymore. At any rate, as proof (or even evidence) of the truth of perseverance theology, the passage is utterly weak because Peter clearly precludes the idea. I'll post Peter's entire thought:

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.

2 Peter 1:3-10

Peter's language seems pretty hard to get around. A better explanation is that Peter is referring to the person who is elect to great reward in the coming Kingdom. Peter knew he had not only called, but was chosen as one who would "be welcomed" into the Lord's Kingdom, since Jesus clearly told him he would.


  • It seems very clear to me, Jodie! Great post. I don't see how that verse could be so missaplied.

    I read your link to "the Pulpit" and thought you, Bobby and Lou were good challengers.

    I wonder why I never see Phil Johnson commenting there? At the Pyromaniac site, he is always threatening to discuss things over there, but I every time I read comments at the Pulpit, I see no Pyromaniac. hmmmmm...

    By Blogger Rose~, at Tuesday, November 14, 2006 11:05:00 AM  

  • Great post, Jodie.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Tuesday, November 14, 2006 1:21:00 PM  

  • Hi Jodie,

    Personally, I see this as haning on the word "sure", or in some translations "certain" We are told to make our calling and election sure, and then given the purpose, which is to avoid stumbling or falling. "Stumbling" and "falling", since both words are connected with sure actually do a good job at defining "sure" for us. You've heard the figure of speech, "Make your footing sure" or do you have "sure footing", or even "certain footing." The passage, to me, would be talking about standing or falling, and how we can not fall by making our footing sure. I don't see it as talking about salvation since Peter is writing to brothers and sisters who have cleen cleansed of their sin. But that is just my stomp.


    By Blogger Gojira, at Tuesday, November 14, 2006 4:23:00 PM  

  • Rose,

    Mr. Johnson did do some commenting over on The Pulpit. I pulled some of the comments and have started a short series on them.

    By Blogger Solifidian, at Wednesday, November 15, 2006 2:02:00 PM  

  • Thanks, Solifidian.
    I had not done a thorough scouring of the Pulpit. I had gone there about 7 times and read long comments thread, but I knew I had missed some of the threads. (where is the time?)

    I wish Jodie would have been around on Pyromaniacs for the last couple o days.

    By Blogger Rose~, at Saturday, November 18, 2006 10:52:00 AM  

  • Hi Guys,

    Thanks for commenting on this. I think it's an important passage.

    Gojira, sound like we agree for different reasons.

    Rose thanks for the heads up.

    God bless :)

    By Blogger H K Flynn, at Saturday, November 18, 2006 9:08:00 PM  

  • Great post, Jodie!

    The Peter text only apparently appears to fit the Calvinist scheme, but upon further review, it doesn't ;~).

    By Anonymous bobby grow, at Sunday, November 19, 2006 2:19:00 PM  

  • Thanks, Bobby. I very much agree and was surprised it was even brought up.

    It's long made me wonder that the Puritans, as educated and intellectual as they were, were satisfied with that passage.

    By Blogger H K Flynn, at Monday, November 20, 2006 9:12:00 PM  

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