[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, July 03, 2007

Do You Agree With This Quotation? XVI : The Blatant Works-Salvation of John Piper

by Antonio da Rosa

Speaking [falsely] about the Judgement Seat of Christ, John Piper says:

"Leading me to say to you... the [final] judgment is not simply to determine relative rewards. The judgment is [to] determine whether you pass through judgment into life or whether you pass through judgment into condemnation. And the evidence laid on the table in the court room will be good deeds... When you stand before the judgment... it will... be... according to works... Do you care about words? I care about biblical words!"


John Piper Audio File: What Happens When You Die?

Observations:

1) I care about biblical words too!

2 Tim 1:8-9
"God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works"
NKJV

John Piper wants to distinguish between being saved based upon works and being saved "according to works". Does his distinction pan out? Not if you "care about biblical words!" 2 Tim 1:9 is emphatic. We are not saved "according to our works"!

2) In the course of John Piper's discussion in the audio file, he states that men of all ages will be "judged" according to their works to determine whether or not someone goes to heaven or goes to hell. By so doing, he blatantly disregards:

John 5:24
"Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life."
NKJV

You will note in the audio file that he quotes this verse, but ENDS it after "everlasting life". Why? Because what follows clearly contradicts his position. The one who has believed into Jesus HAS ALREADY passed from death into life and SHALL NOT come into judgment (concerning eternal destiny, or judgment for one's sins).

Does God need to determine whether or not one goes to heaven based upon a judgment "according to [our] works"? This is patently absurd. Does He not know who has already passed form death unto life? Does He not already know who are His children (2 Tim 2:19)? Why must he subject His children to a judgement "according to works" to determine if they are going to heaven or hell? Such a notion blatantly disregards numerous scriptures.

3) John Piper does not distinguish between a judgment exclusively of believers to determine rights to honors, privileges, and rewards based upon our merit as determined by our deeds as stewards, servants, and children of God and the Great White Throne judgment, which comes at the end of the Millennial phase of God's eternal Kingdom, where men and women will be given their day in court, judged according to their works, but condemned because their names are not written in the Book of Life, in other words, sent into the Lake of Fire because they do not possess life.

4) John Piper is a master of theological sophistry and casuistry. When he tries to meld evident theological polarities, the result is absurdity. God is not going to subject His children to a judgment "according to works" to determine whether or not they enter His kingdom. This would contradict John 5:24. Based solely upon faith alone into Jesus Christ, men and women certainly avoid the final judgment of the Great White throne. Christians will appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ (Greek: Bema).

5) John Piper disregards 1 Cor 3:11ff:

11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
NKJV

In John Piper's position, those who do not have good deeds will be cast into hell. But according to Paul, there will be Christians saved apart from any consideration of good deeds. Why, there will be those whose life's works will be compeltely burned up when they have been subjected to the fire of that "Day"! Yet, although they "will suffer loss," they will indeed "be saved".

Conclusion:

John Piper is the master of theological slight of hand. Out of one side of his mouth he expresses that final salvation is not based upon works, yet out of the other side, he pronounces doom to all who cannot withstand God's final judgment which will be based "according to works"!

He has packaged the soteriology of Rome and feeds it to his unsuspecting flock couched in evangelical terms. He is a false prophet, subject to God's anathema, leading people down the broad path that terminates in destruction.

Please pray for the young Christians who fall prey to his deceptive words.

36 Comments:

  • cxv

    By Blogger Antonio, at Tuesday, July 03, 2007 12:59:00 PM  

  • That is just awful.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Wednesday, July 04, 2007 12:07:00 AM  

  • I agree with Matthew. That *IS* just awful. Why are evangelicals giving credence to someone who teaches this? I am emailing this post and link to my pastor. Believers need to take sides on this. Either we believe in salvation by grace through faith or we don't.

    By Blogger Rose~, at Wednesday, July 04, 2007 5:40:00 AM  

  • John Piper is such a quack.

    By Anonymous Mary, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 8:50:00 AM  

  • On bluecollar blog, Gojira says this is a bogus quote.

    By Blogger Rose~, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 9:32:00 AM  

  • http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/

    Antonio, the above link will take you to Piper's views on the Judgement Seat of Christ. In the above you'll notice that Piper maintains that good works flow from having been justified and reveal genuine saving faith. Hardly a new concept being presented here. You are simply rehashing old arguments.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:03:00 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:06:00 PM  

  • Let's try this....

    To counter-act what is going on on another blog, read here....




    http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByDate/1993/847_What_Happens_When_You_Die_All_Appear_Before_the_Judgment_Seat_of_Christ/

    July 05, 2007 7:31 AM

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:11:00 PM  

  • The above link in my 4:03 PM comment didn't work. Try the one in my 4:11 PM comment, please.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:17:00 PM  

  • Antonio, Piper is not saying anyhting new here. Reformed have always maintained that geniune faith works. Why act as though Piper has said anything new here? It is the same things that you and yours have been railing against since your first day in blogdom. Have you seen Ryrie's notes on James 2:14-26? On verse 17 he says,"A workless faith is a dead faith"...His study Bible, page 1876

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:26:00 PM  

  • that is "a workless faith is a worthless faith". Sorry.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:28:00 PM  

  • Antonio, We're still buddies, right? We did,after all, have a peaceful email exchange recently.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:35:00 PM  

  • Mark,

    did you read my text along with his quote?

    Defend him please!

    In what sense are our "good deeds" going to be evidence? Does God not know whether or not we are saved?

    What is this wordplay that we will be judged "according to works"? He says he cares about biblical words, but he denies the truth of Paul that says we are saved "not according to works".

    What of John 5:24, which says the believer will not come into judgment? How is it the believers appear before God to DETERMINE whether or not they are going to heaven by the evidence of their "good deeds"?

    Does not God know who is His?

    How is it you don't care to respond to my observations? John Piper contradicts scripture and states that entrance into heaven is "according to works".

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:37:00 PM  

  • "On bluecollar blog, Gojira says this is a bogus quote."

    Correct. I did. If the sermon was in transcript form, you would see that the one quote was made of snippets from two paragraphs.

    When I read this:
    "In John Piper's position, those who do not have good deeds will be cast into hell."

    I know that the person who wrote those words does not underatand what Piper was saying.

    Do I personally agree with the quote as given? No. I do not. But then again, I also can say that I at least understood the man's argument.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:38:00 PM  

  • Doug,

    that quote is exactly what he is saying.

    His position is that men and women are going to stand at the final judgment (everyone). The evidence on the table will be good deeds. If the person does not have good deeds, he will be cast into hell.

    He does not mention any consultation of the book of life. The quick and the dead will be judged according to works!

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:45:00 PM  

  • Furthermore, he does not consider 1 Cor 3:11ff.

    Read my observations and respond to them. He clearly violates John 5:24 and every verse that says that we aren't saved "according to works"

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 4:46:00 PM  

  • Antonio, did you read the link I provided, or did I waste my time here. In the link Piper's views are clear and easy to understand. I provided the link so that all could see Piper in his context.

    If Piper is like Grudem, and I don't know that he is, I've read very little Piper, Then he, like Grudem is coming from the position that the judgement seat of Christ is another way of looking at the Great White Throne Judgement in Revelation 20:11-13 and add also 2 Cor. 5:10. Grudem looks at them as the same Judgement. In this scenario the saints will see all the sins they ever commited, only at this point they see the horribleness of their sins only to see that Christ paid for them all. A great rejoicing takes place.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:03:00 PM  

  • "Read my observations and respond to them. He clearly violates John 5:24 and every verse that says that we aren't saved "according to works"

    He quoted from John 5 in his sermon. In fact, if you listened to the sermon, you will note that he even talked about John 5:24 as well as vs. 29. He also said in the beginning of the sermon that at death all those who are saved go to be with Christ. Do you understand how that correlates with the remainder of his sermon? Anyway, nor is he saying that works merit justification.

    I must admit something of confusion here though. I have already said that I do not agree with the quote as it stands; with that I am wondering just what it is you are wanting me to respond to, especially in light of you saying elsewhere that I do not ever give anything substantial.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:14:00 PM  

  • There really is no use in discourse Mark.

    You don't answer my point blank questions.

    I have laid them out in the post in my observation section, and in this comment thread.

    John Piper is a false prophet who teaches that men are saved according to works and that a determination will be made at a judgment (that believers are not even supposed to be at, John 5:24) with good deeds being the "evidence on the table", whether or not one goes to damnation or heaven, "according to works".

    This is a full-return to Rome.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:16:00 PM  

  • Doug:

    respond to

    1) His insistence that "biblical words matter" in consideration of him saying that men and women are judged "according to works" in light of:

    2 Tim 1:8-9
    "God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works"
    NKJV

    2) Respond to his contention that saved people will be at the final judgment. Respond to the fact he quotes John 5:24 but ends after "everlasting life" and does not continue to say "and does not come into judgment"

    3) Respond to his assertion that at the final judgment, works will determine whether one goes to heaven or hell (remember, the are the "evidence on the table" and determination of destiny is "according to works".

    4) Why must a believer be subject to a consideration of his works for the reason of determining his final destiny? Does not God know who is his? Doesn't the believer not come into Judgment? Hasn't the believer already passed from death unto life? Hasn't his eternal destiny already been determined at the moment of faith in Christ?

    5)Respond to the facts of Rev 20, which is abundantly clear. Condemnation is not "according to works", it is for reason of one's name not being written in the book of life. In the gospel of John, Jesus is emphatic that the believer in Him has life, and therefore does not come into a final judgment to determine his destiny.

    6)Respond to his lack of taking 1 Cor 3:11ff into consideration. If "good deeds" are the "evidence laid on the table" what of the man who has his deeds burned up on the "Day" but is "saved, yet as through fire"? According to Piper's theology, this man ought to go to hell, but Paul is clear that he is saved.

    Respond to these.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:28:00 PM  

  • Antonio, I provided that link for all to see Piper in context. When someone quotes another out of context it is not good. Are any of your readers interested in seeing Piper in his own setting as I have provided here in the link, or are they interested in just your report of what he said. I hope your readers will be fair to Piper here and read the link that I have provided along side your quotes. If you have quoted him correctly then there should be no fear in letting your readers see the two articles side by side.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:37:00 PM  

  • Let the reader's decide for themselves what Piper teaches...

    Let's try this....

    To counter-act what is going on on another blog, read here....




    http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByDate/1993/847_What_Happens_When_You_Die_All_Appear_Before_the_Judgment_Seat_of_Christ/

    July 05, 2007 7:31 AM

    July 05, 2007 4:11 PM

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 5:48:00 PM  

  • Piper is saying that our works will be public evidence of our genuine faith. (ya know, that faith works thingy you all hate). Our works will show all that our faith was genuine.

    You keep beating that drum about a workless (Ryrie says, "worthless faith") faith. You judge all comers from your minority position. Of couse in doing that you can make everybody to look bad. Piper says throughout that link that man is justified by faith alone in Christ alone. The bone you pick is his insistance that genuine faith works.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 6:00:00 PM  

  • Run these things side by side, Antonio, if you dare.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 6:23:00 PM  

  • We don't seem to be getting anywhere, Mark, seeing that you don't answer any of my observations or questions...

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 6:29:00 PM  

  • "1) His insistence that "biblical words matter" in consideration of him saying that men and women are judged "according to works" in light of:"

    Yes, he said that Biblical words matter. Do you have a problem with having Biblical words matter? I know that I don't.

    Yes, he said that we are judged according to works. From what I have read, Free Grace says that we are judged by works as well.
    *******************************

    "2 Tim 1:8-9
    "God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works"

    Yes. Even Piper agrees with this. All of salvation is all of God. It is never of us. That even means that the "good works" we do is because of the salvation God has given us.
    **********************************
    "2) Respond to his contention that saved people will be at the final judgment. Respond to the fact he quotes John 5:24 but ends after "everlasting life" and does not continue to say "and does not come into judgment"

    He is not a Dispensationalist, Antonio. There will be one overarching final judgment. That would mean that part of your critique is irrelevent. Also irrelevent is your second objection here. That was established at the beginning of the sermon.
    As for what you may be implying by "and does not come into judgment" since all involved are agreed all will be judged, your use here would also be irrelevent since the phrase would be worked out differently by dispensationalists and non-didpensationalists.
    *********************************

    "3) Respond to his assertion that at the final judgment, works will determine whether one goes to heaven or hell (remember, the are the "evidence on the table" and determination of destiny is "according to works"."

    If you were to understand his overall theology, you would know that works are a vindication of what had already been declared forensically in this life. Other than that, you are making him say what you want him to say, not what he actually believes. Try reading his book "Counted righteous In Christ" which if I recall correctly is available for free at his site.
    *********************************

    "4) Why must a believer be subject to a consideration of his works for the reason of determining his final destiny? Does not God know who is his? Doesn't the believer not come into Judgment? Hasn't the believer already passed from death unto life? Hasn't his eternal destiny already been determined at the moment of faith in Christ?"

    Again, you are misrepresenting him. Works are indicative of faith. Works prove that there was faith to begin with and that those works were carried out because of faith.

    " Does not God know who is his?".

    Yes. Even Piper agrees, which you would know if you understood what he taught.

    "Doesn't the believer not come into Judgment?"

    Unless you suddenly thing that believers will not be judged at the "Bema" you question is irrelevent. Jesus was referring to the fact that those who have done the good (however you personally want to define that) will not be in the judgment of the wicked. Again, Piper affirms that. Something you would know if you had taken the time to learn what he teaches.

    "Hasn't the believer already passed from death unto life?"

    Yes. Irrelevent. Piper affirms the same. And he would say that our works prove that.

    "Hasn't his eternal destiny already been determined at the moment of faith in Christ?"

    Yes. Again, something that Piper affirms.
    ********************************

    "5)Respond to the facts of Rev 20, which is abundantly clear. Condemnation is not "according to works", it is for reason of one's name not being written in the book of life. In the gospel of John, Jesus is emphatic that the believer in Him has life, and therefore does not come into a final judgment to determine his destiny."

    Works are indicitive of the heart. You other point is irrelevent since Piper is not a dispensationalist. Again, learn what piper actually believes, and not what you want him to believe.
    ********************************

    "6)Respond to his lack of taking 1 Cor 3:11ff into consideration. If "good deeds" are the "evidence laid on the table" what of the man who has his deeds burned up on the "Day" but is "saved, yet as through fire"? According to Piper's theology, this man ought to go to hell, but Paul is clear that he is saved."

    Piper takes up the subjects of rewards in his other sermons and his other writings. I would suggest you look there.

    Now is there anything else?

    By Blogger Gojira, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 6:30:00 PM  

  • "We don't seem to be getting anywhere, Mark, seeing that you don't answer any of my observations or questions... "

    July 05, 2007 6:29 PM
    ===
    I've read the entire post. It is written from your slant on things and loaded with suspect information. I provided a link for all to see Piper's views in context and commented on the link's material.

    Bottom line:
    Piper does NOT preach works salvation! He does preach that our works, as seen at the BEEMA SEAT, will be evidence that we have/had genuine saving faith. There is no such thing as "Here and now faith", BTW.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Thursday, July 05, 2007 7:31:00 PM  

  • "He is a false prophet, subject to God's anathema,..."

    You hold Piper up to the Hodges/Wilkin standard and declare him worthy of God's anathema?! That's quite a standard. I only hope you find me worthy of God's anathema too. Being judged by that standard and being found worthy of such a thing would only be a badge of honor for me. Please, please declare me a false prophet, subject to God's anathema.

    By Blogger mark pierson, at Friday, July 06, 2007 3:58:00 AM  

  • Mark,
    Why say that? I know this got a little heated, but please.

    I have read you and Gojira's comments here and I appreciate your contributions. Sometimes people make a mistake and a quote taken in isolation can give one a bad impression. I have one such in my possession of someone who I would not believe teaches what his quote says. I choose to believe this person (nameless) made a slip of the tongue. He mis-spoke.

    Is that what you think about the quote by Piper? Mark? I think that Gojira is basically saying that.

    It is OK, we don't have to get all worked up here. :~)

    By Blogger Rose~, at Friday, July 06, 2007 5:14:00 AM  

  • The reformed view has a salvation of both justification and sanctification that is powered by GOD. It is a salvation that God will be the ultimate "fruit inspector".

    Claimed faith by a cross-less unsanctified, unchanged, fruitless person is not a saving faith. The N.T. points this out in many places. Regeneration by God’s power produces justification and sanctification. Sanctification by definition is “fruit”. Romans 8 and especially 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. clearly leaves no possibility of any believer not responding by following the leading of God.

    I have no desire to defend Piper against these charges, but I will defend what the bible says on the subject and Romans 8:14 is a passage that I have brought up before and no FG advocated has bothered to even respond and in fact has ignored. I realize that Antonio can attempt to explain it with a ten-page comment. It seems to me if we can take John 6:47 as a clear and simple verse, we can do the same for Romans 8:14.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Friday, July 06, 2007 6:38:00 AM  

  • Jazzycat:
    8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

    I agree with the Word of God there. Does this mean we agree?

    By Blogger Rose~, at Friday, July 06, 2007 9:09:00 AM  

  • Rose,
    If you believe as many that are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God, then we agree. If you want to include any that are not led by the Spirit of God as sons of God, then we do not agree.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Friday, July 06, 2007 12:38:00 PM  

  • Wayne,

    I will write a 10 page comment if necessary. But here are a few thoughts of observation in various forms concerning your proof-text (Rom 8:14), which you have failed to exegete within the context it is given, but rather offer it as a superficial proof for your position:

    1) How can you be certain that what you subjectively consider "Holy Spirit leading" is in fact the Holy Spirit? Do not spurious saints and those who have a temporary faith claim to sense the Spirit's leading?

    The Westminster Confession under article X.IV states, "Others, not elected... may have some common operations of the Spirit".

    John Calvin states:

    "...experience shows that the reprobate are sometimes affected in a way similar to the elect, that even in their own judgement there is no difference between them" (Inst. III.ii.11)

    "Still it is correctly said, that the reprobate believe God to be propitious to them, inasmuch as they accept the gift of reconciliation... Nor do I even deny that God illumines their minds to this extent, that they recognize his grace [and] gives them a manifestation of his present mercy." (Inst. III.ii.12)

    "...experience shows that the reprobate are sometimes affected by almost the same feeling as the elect, so that even in their own judgement they do not in any way differ from the elect." (Inst. III.ii.11)

    Calvin even states the the Holy Spirit has a ministry with some reprobates, "enlightening some with a present sense of grace, which afterwards proves evanescent." (Inst. III.ii.11)

    So my question is how do you know you are being led by the Spirit as a truly elect person and not as a reprobate being acted upon by the Spirit in a transitory way, for the purpose of "the Lord the better to convict" you? (Inst. III.ii.11)

    2) Wayne writes:

    [Romans 8:14] clearly leaves no possibility of any believer not responding by following the leading of God.

    The same with the reprobate. But again I would have to ask you how do you kinow that what you are feeling is the genuine (rather than the spurious) leading of the Spirit? And are you making this an absolute statement?

    Futhermore, you are using a non-sequitor argument. That one leads does not necessarily automatically make one follow.

    Let's say for the sake of argument I state unequivocally and without exception:

    "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God."

    It is obviously logically tenable to assent to that proposition and still hold that all who are led by the Spirit do not necessarily follow the Spirit.

    Sheep are led by the shepherd, but that does not necessitate them following the shepherd as indicated both by scripture and experience! Sure, the good shepeherd will go find the sheep. But there is the practice of shepherds to break the legs of sheep who continually go astray from the shepherd's leading. And this could be likened to the temporal consequences of fully mature sin in the life of a believer causing his premature death, or a divine consequence of premature death, as the sin unto death.

    The Westminster confession states in XVII.III, "Nevertheless, [the elect] may, through the temptations of Satan and of the world, the prevalency of coruption remaining in them, and the neglect of the means of their preservation, fall into grievous sins; and for a time, continue therein... and grieve his Holy Spirit... have their hearts hardened... [and] hurt and scandalize others"

    Even the Westminster Confession states that the elect can fall into "grievous sin", and "grieve [the] Holy Spirit". How come do you think the Holy Spirit is grieved? Precisely because He is leading and the carnal Christian is not following!

    The Canons of Dort go even so far as to say, "converts are not always so influenced and actuated by the Spirit of God... [and are] liable to be drawn into great and heinous sins [whereby] they very highly offend God, incur a deadly guilt, grieve the Holy Spirit [and] interrupt the exercise of faith[!!]... and lose the sense of God's favor" (Dort: V.4-5).

    You have serious problems with your position here:

    You don't know for sure if it is the effective leading of the Spirit as opposed to His ineffectual leading.

    That one leads, does not necessitate that one follow.

    Both Dort and Westminster state the same thing, and put no time limit on one refusing to be led by the Spirit, except they state that the elect can't die that way (IOW they will repent at some time prior to death). In other words, they espouse the "You are only as good [read saved] as your last at bat" theology.

    Your position leaves much to be desired in terms of the Scriptures, your creeds, your theology, logic and consistency.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Friday, July 06, 2007 2:02:00 PM  

  • Antonio,
    I will be out the rest of the night so I will deal with your Westminster & Institute references and smoke screen later. However, if you will engage the text directly we can determine some truths.
    (1) The sons of God are in view here. This is another way of describing believers or the regenerate.
    (2) Paul in Romans 8 (the context) has developed that believers are indwelt by the Holy Spirit and unbelievers are not.
    (3) The many in this passage are indwelt by the Spirit of God and are believers.
    (4) The many that are being led by the Spirit of God are responding to this leading or the passage is nonsense.

    I have to go. More later…..

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Friday, July 06, 2007 2:44:00 PM  

  • Antonio,
    I prefer to deal with the text in question rather than giving experts from the Institutes or the WCF. However, since you brought a Calvin quote into the debate, I offer the following from Calvin’s Institutes where he mentions Romans 8:14 which is the text in question:

    Institutes 3-2-39….Paul declares that those only are the sons of God who are led by his Spirit (Rom. 8:14); these men would have those who are the sons of God to be led by their own, and void of the divine Spirit. He tells us that we call God our Father in terms dictated by the Spirit, who alone bears witness with our spirit that we are the sons of God (Rom. 8:16); they, though they forbid us not to invoke God, withdraw the Spirit, by whose guidance he is duly invoked. He declares that those only are the servants of Christ who are led by the Spirit of Christ (Rom. 8:9); they imagine a Christianity which has no need of the Spirit of Christ. He holds out the hope of a blessed resurrection to those only who feel His Spirit dwelling in them (Rom. 8:11); they imagine hope when there is no such feeling.

    Your WCF quote was incomplete:
    You said…..The Westminster Confession under article X.IV states, "Others, not elected... may have some common operations of the Spirit".
    The full passage says the following….
    ”Others, not elected, although they may be called by the ministry of the Word, and may have some common operations of the Spirit, yet they never truly come unto Christ, and therefore cannot be saved:”

    while I can find plenty of quotes to support my view directly, let us look at the text in context (the great chapter of Romans 8) rather than get bogged down in pulling these quotes.

    Romans 8:4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
    Romans 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
    Romans 8:8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
    Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
    Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

    It is clear in v. 14 that all believers and them alone are led by the Spirit of God. This is verified in v.8 and 9 where Paul states that anyone with the Spirit is not in the flesh. Those in the flesh do not have the Spirit, do not please God and are unregenerate. In v. 9 he states that any man without the Spirit is not a believer. Does being led by the Spirit leave open the possibility that a person will not follow the Spirits leading at all as you suggest? Well I suggest that v. 4 states that a characteristic of a believer is that he walks after the Spirit. He follows the lead of the indwelling Spirit because he is in Christ Jesus (v.1). The righteousness of the law is fulfilled in those who walk not after the flesh (unbelievers) but after the Spirit believers. Verse 29 states that those he foreknew, he predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son. All (not some or most) that are predestined are conformed to the image of Christ. When the dots of Romans 8 are connected we see that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Those in Christ Jesus are indwelt by the Spirit of Christ and are led by the Spirit of Christ. They have their minds set on the things of the Spirit and they walk after the Spirit. They are conformed to the image Christ because they follow the leading of the Spirit. They do not do this perfectly, and grieve the Spirit at times but their walk, their mind, their desires, their new nature is in a direction of more and more holiness without which we are told in Hebrews 12 that no man will see the LORD.
    wayne

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Friday, July 06, 2007 9:39:00 PM  

  • Wayne,
    Yes, led by the spirit. However, you will not always be able to tell how this looks. The wind blows where it will .... you can't see it.

    By Blogger Rose~, at Sunday, July 08, 2007 2:47:00 PM  

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