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    "You are really cool you are married to an European!! How cooler can you be??"
    Fisherman Pecheur

    "Smarty Pants"
    Mad Matt

    "Oh, you did not ask for Bonhoeffer's opinion did you? You wanted mine..."
    the SOFYST

    "You are like the master at this "feelings" stuff!
    Kind Kristi

    "I enjoy your comments, but they are always delightfully enigmatic"
    Dyspraxic Fundamentalist

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The war

“…the fact remains that the flesh cannot choose good, let alone God..only the new creation and they war against each other…” - Bhedr
The determinist says that choice is an illusion therfore any concept other than forced submission is faulty to them. Lordship Salvation proponents hold to the premise that the new creation does not occur unless we make Christ Lord of our life yet most who have not yet progressed to Determinism would agree with our understanding that it is only the new creation that is capable of making this choice. This creates the paradox which illustrates the faulty premise.

I say the scripture teaches that the new creature will only always choose to serve God (it cannot sin) and must first be created by God who, by His grace, does not create the new creature through the commitment of a man to serve or through any other offering of the man but through his faith in Jesus Christ alone. Then, and only then, can a man hope to submit to God’s will and even this is not a forgone conclusion. While that which is born of God cannot sin, the flesh will continue to strive against it and only by the power of God that comes through faith can he overcome his fleshly desires. This power is not thrust upon a man but made available to him in Jesus Christ and all who fail to avail themselves of that power will lose the war.



Blogger Gordon Cloud said...

I love these short but pithy posts. You say more in two paragraphs than many say in twelve.

I do not believe that we can be saved apart from the Lordship of Jesus Christ. However, His Lordship is based upon who He is and not upon my choice. If I am saved by "making Him Lord over every area of my life" (as I have heard many LS proponents say), then there is always the possibility that I can at some point rebel against His Lordship, thus undoing what I did to get saved.

I don't think you can undo salvation.

7/26/2006 09:12:00 AM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

I am determinist, as you know, and I do not believe in forced submission. I believe in submission without alternative. God did not force Abraham to obey Him, but Abraham had no choice in the matter.

You, a believer in choice, will necessary look at an absence of choice as a foced situation. But could you concede, at least momentarily, that you may be mistaken? Could you not see that your presupposition (that without choice there is force) may be coloring your objection?

When I think of someone being forced to do something, I think of someone having a choice to do this or that, one wanting to do that, but being forced to do this.

Therefore, if one is 'forced' to do something, one had a choice, they were just not allowed to make that choice.

However, if choice was not present (as I believe) then one just did. One was not forced to do what they did, as they wanted to do what they did. They had no desire or inclination to do otherwise, therefore they were not forced to do otherwise.

You say as well that LORDship proponents hold to the premise that new creation does not occur unless we make Christ LORD of our life. I am LORDship and I have never believed this.

You are putting the cart before the horse. I believe that we are made a new creation, therefore we necessarily will make Christ LORD of our life. Christ being LORD is a necessary outcome of us being made a new creation.

I have never believed that we are not made a new creation (i.e. saved) until after we put Christ as LORD of our lives. That is a works-based salvation.

It is all too easy for people who disagree with LORDship salvation proponents to get confused in the arguments and assume that we are saying that if one doesn't have Christ as LORD of their life, then one won't be saved. But that is not the claim. THe claim is that if one doesn't have Christ as LORD of their life, then they WEREN'T saved.

You can look at it like this. If someone came to you and claimed that one could be saved, yet not go to heaven, you would necessarily disagree. Those that are saved necessarily go to heaven (they are saved from hell, saved to heaven). Therefore you would claim that if one is saved, one will go to heaven.

But your arguer could then come back and claim that you are attempting to add a prerequisite to salvation. You are saying that one will not be saved unless one goes to heaven.

You are arguing that if one doesn't go to heaven, then one isn't saved. If one does go to heaven, then one is saved. But they will falsely view you as claiming that if one goes to heaven, then one is saved, or if one goes to hell, then they are not. They confuse the topic.

Much as I think you are here. LORDship does not claim that one is not regenerated, converted, or 'saved' (in the justification sense) until one has made Christ complete LORD over all their life. They simply claim that if true conversion does occur, if one is truly intertwined with the Spirit and they are no longer their's, then Christ will not leave them alone. The same one who started a good work will be faithful enough to finish it. The Spirit is strangely unable to be slack on His job...

7/26/2006 09:29:00 AM  
Blogger Kitty Cheng said...

Wow what a thought-provoking post Kc.

I pray that we will all hold onto the power of God through faith that is available to us, as God doesn't force it unto us.

7/26/2006 10:35:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Gordon thanks and I couldn't agree more. Christ is Lord of all but not all submit to Him. I too am persuaded that eternal life really is "eternal life". ;-)

Adam I'm grateful to you too for so many things but especially your willingness to further discuss these issues.

I am always willing to consider that my understanding is dim and whether we find agreement or not I am always grateful for a better understanding of your position. It may help in our discussion if you know that at present I perceive choice as being requisite to a determination rather than a presupposition. This will help frame my argument that the scripture indicates that God requires a man to make certain determinations upon himself, not the least of which is submission to His word. I also find it difficult to consider Determinism outside of some understanding of what it means to submit or rebel so if you could expound on those terms I would be grateful. I also make a distinction between desire and choice and find that wisdom often dictates that we choose to do what is best in spite of our desire as is the case in this war between the flesh and the spirit. Given the Calvinist doctrine of perseverance it would seem that submission is an auto-response and in one sense I agree. It is the response of that which is born of the Spirit but not of the flesh. The man and must determine to submit to God or be overtaken by his flesh.

I think what you have described is the Calvinist point of perseverance but we agree that to claim that submission is requisite for salvation is to ascribe to a works based soteriology. You may find this belief sets you at odds with the other Lordship Salvation proponents. ;-)

Amen Kitty. ;-)

7/26/2006 10:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Danny Kaye said...

Hope no one minds if I ask a few questions. Obviously you are free to ignore them as from an ignorant player.
I have to admit that my head is swirling in a dizzy state right now. And I understand fully that I understand nothing that was said; so let me try to figure it out and if I get something (everything?) wrong, I trust it will be corrected.

Lordship Salvation proponents believe that one can be saved and then lose their salvation? (I assume it would be because they have removed faith from Jesus and are now trusting in themselves?)

Determinists believe that once we are saved we are always saved? (I assume this is because no one can make Jesus Lord and then be saved; it must be the other way around?)

Kc says that a new creature cannot sin. But that the flesh can, thus there are two of us in each one of us? (Not trying to be flip, here. Just pulling a Nicodemous-style "How can this be"?

And Adam had me spinning in circles a few times with some of his thoughts. But the one I want to grasp is the "I have never believe that we are not...until...that is a works based salvation."
Are you sure that's written correctly? I want to understand it because I think it is kind of a big part of your core beliefs. But I can't quite wrap my brain around it.

7/26/2006 11:03:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Jeff please don't feel alone here because I'm trying to make sense of these issues myself.

So far as I know none of us commenting so far consider eternal life to be anything less than eternal so we don't believe that what is eternal can suddenly become temporal.

There are actually two related issues being discussed at present, salvation and submission. Adam is welcome to elaborate but as I understand it, the Determinist believes that God determined everything, and I mean everything that has been, is or will be including my next comment. This philosophy is harmonious with the Calvinist belief concerning election, which according to some states that every person born was predetermined to believe and have eternal life or to continue in unbelief to the second death.

LS proponents claim that Jesus cannot be considered a person's savior (that is, bringer of salvation) without simultaneously being lord of the person's life.

I maintain that whoever believes in Jesus Christ has eternal life but that does not assure submission to Christ, it only makes it possible. My understanding of what it means to believe precludes the possibility that belief is predetermined.

7/26/2006 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger Bhedr said...

Try to unlock the birth of the flesh first and then you may one day fully understand all this. I guess I hover around the determinist position if I am to be pinned down, but I still don't view the new birth as forced coersion, but rather releasing a prisoner who has been crying out for deliverance. Some have not been given the understanding that they are in a prison cell on this earth, but still view this life as a paradise of sorts to consumate their dreams. Once the prisoner is brought to the reality that they are in darkness...well, its all in there somewhere....the man would be mad not to choose his freedom.

Ahh this is tough...you know as I said...look at the first birth. One little sperm cell finding its way to the egg while the other million die. Coincidence? The Husbands choice? Well of course it was his desire to love his wife...but consider external stimuli and outside effects. The temperature of the day...the mood of the wife or look at the babyboom. That kaliadescopic rush after V-day? Coincidence?

Yeah we have options, but they are dwarfed in comparison to what God is in control of.

I think sometimes Forest Gump may have witnessed and understood more of that then we. All the way from the feather falling on him. The thing is, we don't like to think of ourselves in terms of Forrest Gump in that hopeless state, but are rather like the soldier who got his legs blown off when he thought fate should serve him up his death.

BTW, Tom Fettke claims Tom Hanks made a descision for Christ as part of his friends youth group.

Yes...you got it...the same man who played in the Davinci Code.

7/26/2006 07:33:00 PM  
Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Excellent post, Kc.

7/27/2006 04:26:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Brian thanks for the dialog. I think Determinism precludes the concept of having options but if you're determined to be a Determinist I'll accept it (grin). I do believe that God is in total control and can remove any option we might have as He sees fit. I believe God is sovereign. May God continue to bless you brother. ;-)

Thanks Matthew, very much. ;-)

7/27/2006 05:57:00 AM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

Danny Kaye, let me try to elaborate.

Some would claim that LORDship teaches that one is not saved until after they make Jesus LORD of their life. That Jesus being LORD is a prerequisite to salvation.

This is totally untrue.

LORDship, as I have always heard it, teaches that a person is saved, and then necessarily has Jesus as LORD of their life. Just as a baby is born, and then breathes, so a person is saved (born) and then obeys (breathes).

If I claimed that a baby WILL breathe if it is born, everyone would agree. But someone would be stupid to come along and claim that because I said that (a baby WILL breathe after it is born) that I am then saying a baby MUST breathe BEFORE it can be born.

LORDship says that a person WILL obey if they are saved. It is stupid to then fault LORDship as saying that because we say that (a person WILL obey after they are saved) that we are then saying that a person MUST obey BEFORE they can be saved.


7/27/2006 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Adam my comments pertain specifically to Lordship SALVATION; those who claim that Jesus cannot be considered a person's savior (that is, bringer of salvation) without simultaneously being lord of the person's life.

7/27/2006 10:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Danny Kaye said...

Perhaps I am confused by the use of the terms Lordship and obedience.

My understanding is that if Jesus is Lord of your life, it simply means that you have given your life to Him fully, freely, and whole-heartedly. Complete obedience does come into the picture. But no more or less than does, say, faith or peace.
Is having faith a matter of obedience? How can it be?
Can I command someone to be at peace the way I could cmmand someone to share their faith? Well, I guess I could. But I had better not expect full compliance.

It's this whole thing about Lordship being linked soley to obedience that gets me. It (obedience) is obviously a major part of Jesus being Lordof our lives. But the Lordship of Jesus encompasses so much more than just the obedience aspect of our lives. In fact, is there a part of our lives that could possibly be left out of Jesus' sphere of influence if we have accepted Him our Lord? Obviously not.

I am not coming down on one side or the other on this because, frankly, I still don't understand the terms being used. If I sound like I am arguing for one side or the other, trust me, I wouldn't know it. Perhaps after hangin' out here for a lot longer, I will learn the jargon y'all use, and I'll sound good, too.

7/27/2006 11:23:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Jeff you sound just fine to me. If you hang around then maybe we'll finally define these terms so that we can be sound. ;-)

7/27/2006 11:51:00 AM  
Blogger jazzycat said...

I believe Scripture teaches that we are spiritually DOA at our physcial birth. Until God quickens us through rebirth (regeneration), we do not seek God. At rebirth (John 3:3 & Eph. 2:4-5) we are made alive spiritually and come to Jesus willingly due to this grace. With a new heart, spirit, attitude, desires, etc. a sinner will follow Jesus out of love, obedience, and gratitude. It is all due to the power of God as the hymn states, "Nothing in my hand I bring simply to the cross I cling".

There is a huge difference beween professing faith (lips) and possessing faith (heart). A possession of faith will naturally cause a response of obedience to Jesus though not perfectly. A mere profession with no heart felt desire to obey Chirst is a false faith that is no different than no faith at all.


7/27/2006 01:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Danny Kaye said...

Allow me to do something I haven't liked doing for quite some time: I want you to lable me.

I'll tell you some of my core beliefs and you tell me what term you would use to describe me. I think this will give me a good indicator as to what is being discussed when I read the terms used here.

I believe that the Bible teaches baptism for the forgiveness of sins. (Acts 2:38)

I believe it is at baptism that we confess Jesus as Lord. (Acts 22:16)

I believe we are not born again until after we come up out of the water. (Romans 6:4)

I believe that a person can have faith, love, and trust in God, yet still be unsaved.

I believe the church is the Kingdom of God on earth.

I believe that, though God has everything in His grasp and control, He allows me to choose whatever I want to do. (In this, I understand I am no Calvinist.)

I believe we are saved by the grace of God and that no amount of good deeds can save me.

I believe a person can lose their salvation only by removing their faith from Jesus. (In essence, the person puts his faith back into himself again and is his own lord.)

I beieve that believing in Jesus only gives us the right to become children of God. (John 1) Kind of like turning 16 gives you the right to get your drivers license.

Let me know if you need any more and in what areas they might be.

Again, I don't like lables. But I think in this case I am willing to be called names.

Thanks for humoring me.

7/27/2006 03:12:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Jeff at your request I will do as you ask. I hope you are not offended. I would lable you as a...

"Brother" ;-)

I think you are clearly CoC which is primarily Arminian.

7/27/2006 03:50:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Jazzy thanks for your understanding. ;-)

7/27/2006 03:54:00 PM  
Blogger Bhedr said...

I am a stubborn old lot...but its impossible for me to be determinded:-)

7/27/2006 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...


7/27/2006 06:42:00 PM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

Kc, perhaps that is my confusion. I do not view 'salvation' as a one time act, but rather as a continuing process by which we are saved from sin and death and sickness and sadness. I likewise do not view Jesus as a limited 'Savior', saving me only from Hell. Therefore, I would say that for Jesus to be 'Savior' throughout my life, He would likewise need to be my 'LORD'. Afterall, He wears many hats.

7/27/2006 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Adam I think it is evident that the majority of our conflicts have a philosophical origin. While I am assured of the gift of eternal life I also perceive a process whereby we should be conformed to the image of Christ but not a simultaneous occurrence of submission nor a guaranteed reward. In 1st Corinthians 9 Paul conveys the necessity of our determination in these things and clearly indicates the potential for an unsatisfactory outcome.

24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:
27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

Our lives are not an act with a predetermined outcome.

7/28/2006 10:08:00 AM  

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