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WHI-1125 | What Does it Mean to be Protestant?

Posted by on in 2012 Show Archive
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On this edition, the hosts walk through the central issues that they believe Protestants need to recover in our time. These issues include the solas of the Reformation, seeing law and gospel as central motifs in Scripture, being both missional and vocational in our outreach, recovering a Word and Sacrament ministry, passing on the faith to each successive generation through catechesis, and finally, holding fast to the truths of the Christian faith as summarized by our church's confessions.

On this edition, the hosts walk through the central issues that they believe Protestants need to recover in our time. These issues include the solas of the Reformation, seeing law and gospel as central motifs in Scripture, being both missional and vocational in our outreach, recovering a Word and Sacrament ministry, passing on the faith to each successive generation through catechesis, and finally, holding fast to the truths of the Christian faith as summarized by our church's confessions.




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  • Guest - Bill

    The secret will of God no man can resist Romans 9:19, God always achieves his purposes and uses the wicked for his own pupose as well. but his revealed will can be resisted, his rewealed will is that all men should repent and believe the gospel. And when men resist his grace that he offers when the the gospel is preached equally to both elect and reprobate who are drawn by the holy spirit both, they that resist his revealed will sin gravely, and God endures with long suffering those men Romans 9:22 KJV

    And as I explained way before any theology has to be based on God's revealed will, and not his secret hidden will.

    Christians resist God's grace daily, the anger of God with David was primarily because God gave so much wealth and women and other possessions to David and he was not satisfied with God had given him and chose a woman that God had given to another man, as I quoted Nathan the Prophet before carrying that messgae to David. It was a classic rejection of God's grace. And Christians can reject God's grace and refuse to repent, ultimately losing their saving faith and salvation. This teaching of resistible grace is the biblical teaching, and puts the sole responsibility for damnation in man when they fail to persevere in the faith.

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  • Guest - Bill

    Here are Luther and Calvin on hidden and revealed will
    Form http://www.aomin.org/aoblog/index.php?itemid=4727

    Martin Luther:
    We must discuss God, or the will of God, preached, revealed, offered to us, and worshipped by us, in one way, and God not preached, nor revealed, nor offered to us, nor worshipped by us, in another way...
    Now, God in his own nature and majesty is to be left alone; in this regard, we have nothing to do with him, nor does he wish us to deal with him. We have to deal with him as clothed and displayed in his word, by which he presents himself to us. That is his glory and beauty, in which the Psalmist proclaims him to be clothed (Ps. 21:5)...God preached works to the end that sin and death may be taken away, and that we may be saved. ‘He sent his word and healed them’ (Ps. 107:20). But God hidden in majesty neither deplores nor takes away death, but works life and death, and all in all; nor has he set bounds to himself by his word, but has kept himself free over all things.
    ...The Diatribe [against which this book was written]...makes no distinction between God preached and God hidden, that is, between the Word of God and God himself. God does many things which he does not show us in his word, and he wills many things which he does not in his word show us that he wills. Thus, he does not will the death of a sinner – that is, in his word; but he wills it by his inscrutable will. At present, however, we must keep in view his word and leave alone his inscrutable will; for it is by his word, and not by his inscrutable will, that we must be guided. In any case, who can direct himself according to a will that is inscrutable and incomprehensible?...
    So it is right to say, “If God does not desire our death, it must be laid to the charge of our own will if we perish”; this, I repeat, is right if you spoke of God preached. For he desires that all men should be saved, in that he comes to all by the word of salvation, and the fault is in the will which does not receive him, as he says in Matt. 23:37...But why the majesty does not remove or change this fault of will in every man (for it is not in the power of man to do it), or why he lays this fault to the charge of the will, when man cannot avoid it...as Paul says in Rom. 11: “Who art thou that repliest against God?” The Bondage of the Will, on Ezek. 18:23

    John Calvin:
    As the will of God, which he has delivered in his law, is good, I grant that whatever is contrary to it is evil: but when you babble about the contrariety of that hidden will, by which God distinguishes between the vessels of mercy and the vessels of wrath, and freely uses both according to his pleasure, you exhale a vanity as detestable as it is false, from the foetid ditch of your ignorance. I confess Christ speaks of his open will, when he says, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how often would I have gathered thy children together, but you would not;” he casts the same reproach on the Jews, as Moses did in his song." Calvin on Secret Providence, article 7th.

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  • Guest - Bill

    There are a lot of promises as you can see, however there is also a warning that if we don't do our part:

    "21] 7. That He will also strengthen, increase, and support to the end the good work which He has begun in them, if they adhere to God’s Word, pray diligently, abide in God’s goodness [grace], and faithfully use the gifts received."

    The New Testament is full of similar warnings to christians. I honestly believe that those that ignore these warnings and believe they are not addressed to them have never been saved and need to repent and believe the gospel. Either that or they forgot they have been cleansed from their sin 2 Peter 1:9 this is exactly what 2 Peter teaches. Peter as well teaches that apostacy is possible, and clearly identifies those that have forgotten they have been cleansed from their sin, they were once saved but now they have committed apostaccy. As I said before only the elect persevere. But not all that have faith are of the elect. A faith that doesn't persevere, a faith that doesn't work, is not the faith of the elect. 2 Peter admonishes us to make our electio sure, he also specifically tells christians to add to their faith and not be content with faith (which by the way it is evidence that somebody hasn't been saved as Oeter teaches).

    5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble;

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  • Guest - bruce

    your statements show me that you believe in human works based salvation, sanctification, and preservation.
    I don't believe in any of it, because the more I cross reference you statements with correct Biblical teaching, the more mistaken I find your theology and interpretations to be.

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  • Guest - Bill

    Bruce, indeed there are so me beautiful promises that we can never lose our salvation. I don't dispute those, neither do lutherans. We believe that we can not lose our salvation, and we also believe that we can lose our salvation. Because scripture teaches both. Since you mentioned the new heart here's some scripture that teach us that we can never lose our salvation, that nobody can prevail against the will of God.

    Ezekiel 36:
    26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.

    Jeremiah 24:7
    J7 Then I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the Lord; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart.eremiah 24:7

    Jeremiah 31
    33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
    34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

    Ezekiel 36, here's the full text of the New Covenant:

    22 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel, but for My holy name’s sake, which you have profaned among the nations wherever you went. 23 And I will sanctify My great name, which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst; and the nations shall know that I am the Lord,” says the Lord God, “when I am hallowed in you before their eyes. 24 For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. 25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them. 28 Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God. 29 I will deliver you from all your uncleannesses. I will call for the grain and multiply it, and bring no famine upon you. 30 And I will multiply the fruit of your trees and the increase of your fields, so that you need never again bear the reproach of famine among the nations. 31 Then you will remember your evil ways and your deeds that were not good; and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight, for your iniquities and your abominations. 32 Not for your sake do I do this,” says the Lord God, “let it be known to you. Be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel!”

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  • Guest - Bill

    OK Bruce, it just occurred to me in the middle of the night that as I agreed with you yesterday on the new heart we all receive, I knew there was something that was missing and couldn't pinpoint to you.

    Salvation is not just the new heart that we receive at the time of justification. Yes we are justified and sanctified at the time we accept Christ and receive a new heart, this is an instanateneous experience. However in order to see the Lord we must die to sin, we still need to kill our old sin nature. This is sanctification and the warning from Romans 8 that if we don't put to death (mortify) the sins of the flesh we shall die.

    You see here's the thing when we are born again and receive the new heart, this is when we receive the good news of the gospel, the work of salvation is finished in a sense for sure. However it is not in that now we are commanded to die to sin. In the new birth we receive something, both justification and sanctification, but in our christian life the opposite happen we need to die, Pauls said he dies daily, we need to slay the old man, die to sin. This is why we can't claim victory prematurely, and we have to ensure to persevere till the end, until the old man dies completely. This is the daily battle of sanctification. And this is part of salvation, without it no man shall see the Lord. This is not salvation by works, in that we don't merit anything in sanctification, we can't add to Christ's work on the cross. Yet the command is there in all the New Testament letters. Sanctification is a process and needs to be endeavoured seriously by any christian. Yes we have the new heart, but now we need to put it to use, we need to train it, have it develop its aerobic capacity to the fullest. God will do this work in the elect, but I do honestly believe that many will not finish the journey and fall from the faith. They will experience heart failure, yest the new heart can fail, and man lose his salvation. This is why we have to be vigilant and careful and slay the works of the flesh. Commit 100% to Christ, because there is no sanctification if we are not willing to give it all up. God doesn not accept 99% of us, he wants 100% or nothing.

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  • Guest - Bill

    I just quoted Romans 7 verses 14 to 25 with one comment in between the verses which I probably should have put it at the beginning. Regardless my point is that the law still condemns and acuses the christian. Obviously in Romans 8 there is deliverance from the law, the same deliverance that is explained at the beginning of Romans 7. Yet the apostle a christian went through the pain of the law's accusations on his flesh (not on him) in Romans 7. The law needs to be preached in order to produce contrition in the christian, without the law there is no gospel, without the knowledge of sin there is no christ. The law is holy and reveals sin, and because christians still have thir old nature the first use of the law with all its threats is still valid, as long as it's followed by the gospel as is in Romans 8.

    Romans 8
    1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.[a] 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you[b] free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin,[c] he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit."

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  • Guest - Bill

    Law to the proud, grace to the humble. Law to the ungodly and gospel to the godly. I wish I wouldn't need the law at all, unfortunately because of the flesh I do. In heaven there will be no law and no discipline from god, because there will be no sin. Unfortunately this isn't the case on earth. Where christians like David murder the innocent and take his wife, this can happen in your local church. How should hte church deal with a murderer? A pastor that has an affair? Folks we are talking saved believers and very serious sins, these are not just sins that are being conceived in the heart and gotten beyond that stage, this sins have gotten beyond that stage and hurt or take the life or property of a neighbour. This is the reason the law is in the New Testament and this is the reason the lutheran confessions are well equipped to deal with this type of serious sin and the full consequence of the law including the loss of salvation should be brought agains christians that commit actual murder, rape, adultery, theft, fraud. The gospel is insufficient to deal with sin when it escalates to this level, the law needs to do its work first and convict this christians that they are about to pass from eternal life to eternal death, or that they have already passed unless they repent.

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  • Guest - Bill

    I meant Romans 8:1 in my last post and not Romans 8:2

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  • Guest - Bill

    Interesting though everything I wrote about imputed sanctification, in that Luther link I provided is included under justification. So maybe it is not necessary to teach that sanctification is by imputations, howerver justification goes way beyond the forgiveness of sins. As Luther teaches in justification we get everything that is Christ's. And Luther defines our righteousness of sanctification as coming entirely from the first alien righteousness. I am totally fine with this, as long as justification is defined to include all benefits from Christ and not just the forgiveness of sins, but our sanctification also. And Luther agrees there in that he defines the alien righteousness of justification by referring to 1 Corinthians 1:30 and include the alien righteousness of sanctification. Looking at it from this way, sanctification is not by imputation, howerver the alien righteousness of sanctification as Luther defines is included (among many other benefits, everything that is in Christ is ours) in justification.

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