All about mmeeeEEEE!

So apparently, a biography of John Williamson Nevin measures up to the standard of glorifying God and assisting the church. Even one that mocks evangelicals for destroying American conservatism.

But not a history of Calvinism.

Darn!

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138 thoughts on “All about mmeeeEEEE!

  1. I’m no historian, and I don’t pretend to be; I can’t even give an informed review because I haven’t read the book and lack the background knowledge for it. I also prefer to be a spectator in many intra-Reformed debates. But as an outsider of the profession, when I read a review of the book (like that given on the Banner of Truth website), it’s not surprising. The “It’s all about me” seems to be part of the critique. Not to mention that I suspect that such a critique from some, like those at Banner of Truth, would sway some people from purchasing it.

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  2. Yikes, clearly the price on The Lost Soul of American Protestantism is not up to that standard either. I bought the book in 2005 for $22.95 on Amazon. And where is Deconstructing Evangelicalism?

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  3. When you go out looking for “high church”, those who put theosis and church in priority over the forgiveness of sins will stop to praise you.

    http://theecclesialcalvinist.wordpress.com/2014/05/31/are-good-works-efficacious-unto-salvation/

    Bill Evans—”Many Reformed theologians have sought to protect the gratuity of justification by temporally sequestering it from transformation of life so as to underscore that justification cannot depend upon sanctification … But the result here is that justification is abstracted from the ongoing life of faith. Thus it is that a good deal of conservative Reformed theology has been more or less unable to give a coherent account of the Christian life…..Much more satisfactory is the EARLY REFORMED CONCEPTION of the believer’s participation in Christ’s resurrection justification that has been more recently RETRIEVED by Richard Gaffin and others…

    William B. Evans, “Current Models of Union with Christ.”—-In the bifurcation model, Michael Horton does speak of a union with Christ’s humanity, but he clearly means a sharing in the transforming benefits of Christ’s work. Evans is concerned about an “overloading of the forensic” in this model…

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  4. “Those who underscore that justification cannot depend upon sanctification … abstract justification from the ongoing life of faith.

    Is the problem with saying that “sanctification” results from “justification” the fact that we are either justified or we are not?

    Are we not also either “united to Christ” or not?

    When people deny that “sanctification” is a “mere consequence” of the forensic, do they mean to deny that “sanctification” is a consequence of the “merely forensic”?

    If “sanctification” is “more than” than a “mere consequence of justification”, does that mean that “sanctification” is also more than a mere result of “union”?

    Does that mean that “sanctification” is in someway identical to “union”, or at least a necessary “condition” for “union”?

    If “union” is transformation, and “union” must come before justification, how is it that God is still justifying the ungodly?

    William Evans: It is this effort to protect the doctrine of forensic justification by means of an extrinsic soteriology that ,,,Scott Clark espouses… For Scott Clark, the crux of the matter is his conviction that the doctrine of forensic justification demands the sort of extrinsic relationship between Christ and the Christian that he advocates.

    Scott Clark: On what basis does God accept us? Who earned that righteousness? How does a sinner come into possession of that righteousness? Where is that righteousness to be found relative to the sinner, within us or without? Evans may scoff at the doctrine of an “extrinsic” doctrine of justification but Paul himself asked these questions and historically the only alternative to extrinsic (alien) righteousness is a “proper” or “intrinsic” ground of divine acceptance and in that case we’re right back in the medieval soup or, to switch metaphors, moving in with Andreas Osiander.

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  5. “What was at issue for Nevin was the mode of Christ’s presence in the Eucharist and its implications for Christian belief and practice. This rich collection (Sectarianism and the Search for Visible Catholicity) of recent assessments make clear why Mercersburg should be revisited for theology today.”

    A Lutheran explains—“Luther’s Reformation kept the traditional Roman Mass with some necessary changes…While Calvin certainly held to a liturgical form of worship, the insistence on the regulative principle of worship essentially cut off the Reformed from continuity of worship with the patristic and medieval church.

    Jordan Cooper continues—“The Mercersburg and Federal Vision movements certainly are valuable in their insistence on the catholicity of the church. I simply don’t think such a stance can be consistently held from Reformed perspective, which is why the Federal Vision proponents have been so vigorously attacked in Confessional Presbyterianism.”

    http://justandsinner.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-end-of-protestantism.html

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  6. I don’t know what those reviews have to say, but here’s the BIG PROBLEM with Calvinism a History, and I’ve filed my complaint directly with the author and basically got, too bad, so sad, try harder. Here’s the problem, it’s difficult to read in bed. Ken Follet, no problem. Darryl Hart, I have to be at my desk with no distractions, because he was so unsympathetic and just, I don’t know, didn’t give two f’s about the reader as to pack every damn sentence with useful information. I work hard already, and he apparently doesn’t care, just, here’s some more, YUP put it to me and so I’m putting it to you.

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  7. That “History of Calvinism” book does not even tell us why “union with Christ” has the priority in true and mainline Reformed circles.

    John Gill was not “Reformed” but he explains—” The bond of union is not the Holy Spirit. The mission of the Spirit into the hearts of Cod’s elect, to regenerate, quicken, and sanctify them, to apply the blessings of grace to them, and seal them up to the day of redemption, and the bestowing of his several gifts and graces upon them, are in CONSEQUENCE, and by reason of a previous and ANTECEDENT union of them to the Person of Christ.

    Gill—“They do not first receive the Spirit of Christ, and then by the Spirit are united to him; but they are first united to him, and, by reason of this union, receive the Spirit of him… A person is first joined to Christ, and then becomes one spirit with him; that is, receives, enjoys, and possesses in measure, the same Spirit as Christ does(1 Corinthians 6:17).

    Gill—The case is this; Christ, as the Mediator of the covenant, and Head of God’s elect, received the Spirit without measure, that is, a fullness of the gifts and graces of the Spirit: These persons being united to Christ, as members to their Head, do, in his own time receive the Spirit from him, though in measure. They are first chosen in him, adopted through him, made one with him, become heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; and then, as the apostle says, Because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father (Gal. 4:6).

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  8. See, zero F’s. They commissioned it, I did it, you read it. Zero concern for my sleep or relaxation, just one sentence after another, building upon each other, no breaks, no recaps, no sexual tension, just an incessant, relentless, we’re not stopping for restroom breaks, pee in the plastic bottle, stop whining, drive.

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  9. DGH, IMHO, not including Baptists was the best decision you made. Wish I could convince some of my friends that there is no place for them in the story, but getting them to read anything from a University press is a non-starter. Would you consider doing an illustrated version for Lifeway?

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  10. (A different) Dan
    Posted October 22, 2015 at 10:44 pm | Permalink
    DGH, IMHO, not including Baptists was the best decision you made. Wish I could convince some of my friends that there is no place for them in the story

    “There were not just Presbyterians, but Old and New School Presbyterians, Cumberland Presbyterians, Springfield Presbyterians, Reformed Presbyterians, and Associated Presby­terians; not just Baptists, but General Baptists, Regular Baptists, Free Will Baptists, Separate Baptists, Dutch River Baptists, Permanent Baptists, and Two-Seed-in-the-Spirit Baptists.”–Gordon S. Wood, alleged historian, on the American Founding era in “Whose Calvinism Is It, Anyway?”

    Just happened to be posting this quote at my history groupblog, Dan, thought I’d pass it on. Shalom, baby. 😉

    http://americancreation.blogspot.com/2015/10/gary-scott-smith-nation-on-hill.html

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  11. TVD, kind of an inside joke. When and where I grew up, I was told not to anywhere near a lake with a Calvinist. I am well aware of the Particular Baptists and those of similar beliefs and they are a part of my heritage, but until relatively recent years you would have rarely heard an SBC preacher flat out say he was a Calvinist. They would use euphemisms like Doctrines of Grace.

    The review I cited is critical of DGH for not including Spurgeon. As far as I am aware, his main contribution to Calvinist theology is his prayer: “God, save your elect and elect some more.” No Free Will Baptist would disagree with that! (And neither would most Baptist congregations regardless of how much Mohler their pastors have ingested.)

    That you consider Woods an alleged historian says it all. Have a nice night.

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  12. (A different) Dan
    Posted October 23, 2015 at 12:08 am | Permalink
    TVD, kind of an inside joke. When and where I grew up, I was told not to anywhere near a lake with a Calvinist. I am well aware of the Particular Baptists and those of similar beliefs and they are a part of my heritage, but until relatively recent years you would have rarely heard an SBC preacher flat out say he was a Calvinist. They would use euphemisms like Doctrines of Grace.

    The review I cited is critical of DGH for not including Spurgeon. As far as I am aware, his main contribution to Calvinist theology is his prayer: “God, save your elect and elect some more.” No Free Will Baptist would disagree with that! (And neither would most Baptist congregations regardless of how much Mohler their pastors have ingested.)

    Brother Different Dan, I’ll attribute your anger to it being late at night. I’m the only one who gets all the jokes around here. Intended and unintended.

    That you consider Woods an alleged historian says it all. Have a nice night.

    “Alleged” was a joke, as would be obvious to anyone who bothered to do the first bit of Google click homework.

    Gordon S. Wood used to be the gold standard of American history but is now under heavy assault by the race/class/gender cabal.

    I just was considering inviting you to one of my groupblogs as a contributor as one of the honest men I’ve met here, but I’m like WTF at this particular moment, DiffDan. Heckler’s veto? The shoutdown? Mob rule?

    You’ve injured me, man, on every level. If you’re going to sell me out to these people, at least what is your point?

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  13. Dan, I’d still like to do Calvinism in North America (Calvinism 2.0) and really bore sean. It would also po the Baptists more — except sensible ones like you.

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  14. TVD, I made a joking comment to DGH, who I think at least partially understands my Religious beliefs and has more understanding than many of my views about the fair uses of history, that consisted of three sentences. You cut out two of those sentences and tried to make some point or other that was not at all responsive to the point I was making, which is simply that Baptists have not contributed very much to the development of Calvinist theology, however much Baptists who might have considered themselves to be under Calviin’s influence might have contributed to the (particularly) American story. (Worshipping freely this weekend? Thank a Baptist).

    If you detect any animus in my response, up until the
    sentence about wood, I saw none before I posted it and see none now. As for that sentence, you used the word alleged, and I am not responsible for trolling Google to figure out an esoteric meaning.

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  15. DGH:” Dan, I’d still like to do Calvinism in North America (Calvinism 2.0) and really bore sean. It would also po the Baptists more — except sensible ones like you.

    I am honored to be excluded from your po flinging. And grateful, though I would like to getvacdecent seat. Keep me posted

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  16. You shoulda done Gospel Coalition – approved hero history. You coulda borrowed from Tim Challies’ timeline of the Greatest of All Times Heroes of the Last Fifteen Years.

    Also, we *should* get more about you. Your favorite verse. Your conversion story with standard sin and grace inflation. And you need to consistently refer to yourself in the third person. Muddy implores you.

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  17. DGHart: Darn!

    maybe beside the bungee jumping, it was just the bowtie 

    “a study by HCD Research, a media research company, has some fairly difficult-to-swallow survey results, at least for bow tie wearers. It found people perceive bow tie wearers as a little weird, more likely to be employed as a store clerk, a Republican and older than 36. They’re also less wanted as a friend or co-worker than people who wear neckties or don’t wear ties at all. The good news for bow tie guys is people think they are smarter than the necktie/no tie people, and fewer women than men surveyed think they’re weird.
    http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Fashionably+weird%3b+Bow+tie+wearers+proudly+carry+on%2c+despite+the…-a0172327780

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  18. Muddy: Your conversion story with standard sin and grace inflation.

    sometimes I wonder about you guys. One can inflation human sin and underinflate grace?

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  19. Darryl, It’s a great read. But next time throw in a few fictional characters and relationships. So, we’ve got Luther at odds with the pope, but on the side, the pope’s housekeeper and confidant(butler or personal secretary) has fallen in love with Luther’s best friend at Wittenberg and they’re trying to have a relationship while also being fiercely loyal to a friend and needful of their job. So, we have these uncomfortable tensions and dynamics and depictions of stratified life stations and religious and filial and friend interactions. You know, like the Wire.

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  20. Muddy: sin inflation

    riled up now, sorry (not)

    the sin we commit even here – it’s wages – death. God took the penalty, though ( for those who will believe) so no big deal, then, right?, no skin of our backs … literally….

    Isaiah 53:4 Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried;Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted.5 But He was pierced through for our transgressions,He was crushed for our iniquities;The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,And by His scourging we are healed.6 All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him.

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  21. Ali, bow ties are like facial hair and long hair on men–only a small percentage of those who sport them can actually pull it off. But even those who can should know bow ties just aren’t Reformed (they’re Mooselimb).

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  22. Ali, glad to hear that you’re not sorry. Now, this week I saw a kind of “testimonial” where a guy said he had a porn problem at age six. That’s sin inflation. It’s simple – you just put an exponent above your sin number. Then put an exponent above your holiness number, put the two together in a before/after picture and BOOM.

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  23. Ali, kudos on this compliment(?): “fewer women than men surveyed think they’re weird.” Hilarious.

    And the problem with testimony inflation is that Paul doesn’t do it, he just says lists some sins and how/why he has been forgiven of them. Just imagine someone giving their testimony at youth group and only using 2 sentences.

    “12 I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, 13 though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, 14 and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.” 1 Tim 1

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  24. The Mudster is like Goodell – he affirms all his decisions on appeal. You are the “after” picture in an Old Testament prophet kind of way.

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  25. Ali, kudos on this compliment(?): “fewer women than men surveyed think they’re weird.” Hilarious.

    well, I meant to say – surveys CAN be wrong 🙂

    Walton: And the problem with testimony inflation is that Paul doesn’t do it.

    Paul: sinner—of whom I am the worst. I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent.

    and Muddy ,since you are the one bringing it up – re: the porn epidemic – let’ s join together to pray the Lord will bring these things that He already knows into the light so darkness and deception will have to flee.

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  26. Darryl, it’s not that I sit in judgment over your conscience on any particular show, it’s just that I exist in an ethereal realm where TV never comes to mind. It’s all devotionals and scallops. Sometimes Ali walks through with a clip board.

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  27. Sometimes Ali walks through with a clip board.

    Muddy, don’t make me laugh or I will forget to say, because you have your own type clip-boarding,… “Can we agree to just call each other hypocrites and can we just say we sure seem to assume the worst of others”

    Have a great day.

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  28. Ali says: “and Muddy ,since you are the one bringing it up – re: the porn epidemic – let’ s join together to pray the Lord will bring these things that He already knows into the light so darkness and deception will have to flee.”

    Good works can be dead works. Morality can be done in the flesh. Darkness and deception comes in a variety of forms and the type that looks good externally often got the most severe rebukes in the New Testament- to reiterate McMark’s point with another quote from him:

    Hebrews 9:14–”How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”

    The problem with using works “done after you are in the family” to get assurance is that works done without assurance are not pleasing to God. But the light of the gospel exposes our “good works” as “dead works”. And “dead works” are sins.

    John 3:19– “And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

    Certainly God commands us all to be moral. But morality can be done in the flesh. To doubt that you are justified or will be justified because of what you have done or not done is to take the focus away from Christ’s one-time-done death for elect sinners.

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  29. Brother Martin Luther, Master of Sacred Theology, will preside and Brother Leonhard Beier, Master of Arts and Philosophy, will defend the following theses before the Augustinians of this renowned city of Heidelberg in the customary place. In the month of May, 1518.

    Distrusting completely our own wisdom, according to that counsel of the Holy Spirit, “Do not rely on your own insight” [Prov. 3:5], we humbly present to the judgment of all those who wish to be here these theological theses, so that it may become clear whether they have been deduced well or poorly from St. Paul, the especially chosen vessel and instrument of Christ,

    The law of God, the most salutary doctrine of life, cannot advance man on his way to righteousness, but rather hinders him.
    Much less can human works which are done over and over again with the aid of natural precepts, so to speak, lead to that end.
    Although the works of man always appear attractive and good, they are nevertheless likely to be mortal sins.
    Although the works of God always seem unattractive and appear evil, they are nevertheless really for good and God’s glory.
    The works of God (we speak of those which he does through man) are thus not merits, as though they were sinless.
    The works of the righteous would be mortal sins if they would not be feared as mortal sins by the righteous themselves out of pious fear of God.
    By so much more are the works of man mortal sins when they are done without fear and in unadulterated, evil self-security. To say that works without Christ are dead, but not mortal, appears to constitute a perilous surrender of the fear of God. Indeed, it is very difficult to see how a work can be dead and at the same time not a harmful and mortal sin.
    Arrogance cannot be avoided or true hope be present unless the judgment of condemnation is feared in every work.
    In the sight of God sins are then truly venial when they are feared by men to be mortal
    Free will, after the fall, exists in name only, and as long as it does what it is able to do, it commits a mortal sin

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  30. I’m spending way too much time finding these quotes- one more:

    The same preachers who tell you that sin is not a normal pattern for Christians are often the ones who engage in jeremiads about how godless the current president is, indeed, so much worse than all the godly Christian presidents we used to have.

    Dr. T. David Gordon in his book “Why Johnny Can’t Preach: The Media Have Shaped the Messengers” (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Publishing, 2009)
    “Some of the neo-Puritans have apparently determined that the purpose of Christian preaching is to persuade people that they do not, in fact, believe. The subtitle of each of their sermons could accurately be: “I Know You Think You Are a Christian, but You Are Not.” This brand of preaching constantly suggests that if a person does not always love attending church, always look forward to reading the Bible, or family worship, or prayer, then the person is probably not a believer…”

    The hearer falls into one of two categories: one category of listener assumes that the preacher is talking about someone else, and he rejoices (as did the Pharisee over the tax collector) to hear “the other guy” getting straightened out. Another category of listener eventually capitulates and says: “Okay, I’m not a believer; have it your way.” But since the sermon mentions Christ only in passing (if at all), the sermon says nothing about the adequacy of Christ as Redeemer, and therefore does nothing to build faith in Christ.

    “It is painful to hear every passage of Scripture twisted to do what only several of them actually do (i.e., warn the complacent that not everyone who says, “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven). And it is absolutely debilitating to be told again and again that one does not have faith when one knows perfectly well that one does have faith, albeit weak and imperfect…”

    “So no one profits from this kind of preaching; indeed, both categories of hearer are harmed by it. But I don’t expect it will end anytime soon. The self-righteous like it too much; for them, religion makes them feel good about themselves, because it allows them to view themselves as the good guys and others as the bad guys – they love to hear the preacher scold the bad guys each week. And sadly, the temperament of some ministers is simply officious. Scolding others is their life calling; they have the genetic disposition to be a Jewish mother.” (pp. 83-84)

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  31. thanks John and keep hanging out with Jesus (2 Cor 3:18) , learning,heeding God’s whole counsel (2 Pet 1:1-4), and maybe don’t protest so much

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  32. Ali, you seem to have taken over the role of resident piety watcher at oldlife. You do realize that many have tried to play that role here- don’t you? I don’t “hang out” with Jesus. I believe that his atoning and righteous death on the cross imputed to me as my righteousness is my only hope of escaping the just wrath of God on my life. What little internal piety I may possess is not my main concern. Nor should it be your concern. What is the Gospel,? is my main concern and the obedience of the Gospel that keeps me believing it. I have found that the more I focus on my personal progress in piety the more I lose sight of the good news of the Gospel. That is the whole counsel of God- His eternal redemptive plan in Christ for His chosen elect children. I boast only in the cross of Christ. That is my protest.

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  33. John: Ali, you seem to have taken over the role of resident piety watcher at oldlife.

    everyone should have their own unique job at OL, right?

    btw, what is your main concern, I mean for reals and practically?

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  34. Ali, I told you my main concern- What is the Gospel? There are many false Gospel’s but only one true Gospel. It can sometimes be tricky discerning the true from the false. God reveals His true Gospel to His elect sheep whose names have been written in the book of life since before the foundation of the world.

    Who are you , anyways? You block access to any information about you. I have not “hung out” at oldlife much in the last year so the only thing I know about you is from the posts I read. You sound like an Edwardsian Calvinist, neo-Puritan, of the Gerstner and Sproul type. Who do you read?

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  35. John: I don’t “hang out” with Jesus.

    how come, don’t wanna?, you’ll be doing it for an eternity

    John: What is the Gospel,? is my main concern and the obedience of the Gospel that keeps me believing it.

    You mean the obedience of faith? From what I see, some who murk up the Lord’s word, use words that MEEEEEEan it’s all about MEEEEE.

    John: I have found that the more I focus on my personal progress in piety the more I lose sight of the good news of the Gospel.

    The good news of the Gospel is deliverance from the penalty, power, and presence of sin. ‘Course many just like deliverance- from- the- penalty-part, cause the deliverance from the power part is just downright painful and costly

    John: That is the whole counsel of God- His eternal redemptive plan in Christ for His chosen elect children.

    The whole counsel of God is the sum of His words -Who He is and What He is doing

    John: I boast only in the cross of Christ.

    amen. may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world; and let him who boasts that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the LORD Gal 6:14; Jer 9:24

    John: Who are you , anyways? You block access to any information about you. I know about you is from the posts I read. You sound like an Edwardsian Calvinist, neo-Puritan, of the Gerstner and Sproul type. Who do you read?

    Block access? Just wanna be a Jesus-type; read mostly Jesus right now- trying-to catch up, though I do read some helpful men.

    btw, I see, this am, Trump is a Presbyterian-type which he says is better than Ben Carson’s-type. But don’t try to pin him down either: “I wouldn’t want to get into it. Because to me, that’s very personal,” the billionaire businessman said on Bloomberg’s “With All Due Respect,” when asked to share his favorite Bible verse. “The Bible means a lot to me, but I don’t want to get into specifics,” he said “ http://www.christianpost.com/news/trump-presbyterian-ben-carson-seventh-day-adventists-148463/

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  36. Ali, I obviously believe a different Gospel than you do. Your comment was very revealing. Am I reading that last paragraph right- you are a Trump supporter? If so, are you part of the upper 1%? You have to make more than 790,000/yr. I am just seeing how far I can go in regards to asking questions about your personal life.

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  37. John: Ali, I obviously believe a different Gospel than you do.

    really? hope not John. maybe you’ll elaborate, maybe not; I do agree there are many false gospels.

    John: Am I reading that last paragraph right- you are a Trump supporter?

    you’re reading-into things John though I am thinking about Carson; ,mostly though trying to remember to just pray for the election results right now

    John: I am just seeing how far I can go in regards to asking questions about your personal life.

    you could ask anything you want; probably won’t answer too much; who does here anyway
    how ’bout you?

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  38. Ali Incognito,

    John Y: Ali, I obviously believe a different Gospel than you do. I was referring to this- “The good news of the Gospel is deliverance from the penalty, power, and presence of sin. ‘Course many just like deliverance- from- the- penalty-part, cause the deliverance from the power part is just downright painful and costly.” That is what the Gospel is? Are you sure about that? You’re not one of those who believes in “cheap grace” or “easy-believism”- are you? You’re the heroic type? I wanna be like Ali Incognito! So is the “downright painful and costly” the condition you met before God justified you? You’re making my “vulgar pleb” come out.

    My bad about my misinterpretation regarding Trump supporter. Good, so we don’t have to get into politics. I’d much rather stick with the Gospel.

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  39. Williams Evans, channeling Nevin—The church is not constituted, as some today curiously allege, by its confession… RATHER it is constituted by its spiritual union with the great Head of the church—Jesus Christ. Virtualism tells us we receive the effects of Christ’s saving work RATHER than Christ himself, and that salvation is merely on the basis of what Christ has done RATHER than “in Christ”; and its Abstraction of justification from the life of faith and obedience and the corporate life of the church.

    https://theecclesialcalvinist.wordpress.com/what-is-poec/

    Evans…”the Reformed tradition has always been diverse and that realism in the trajectory of Calvin has always had its exponents. We also find much to ponder in critical appropriations (as opposed to mere parroting or repristinating) of Jonathan Edwards in the eighteenth century, John W. Nevin of Mercersburg, , and W. G. T. Shedd in the nineteenth, and Geerhardus Vos, Thomas F. Torrance of Scotland, and Richard B. Gaffin, Jr. in the twentieth. We… emphasize the corporate solidarity of Christians in the church and the priority of the church over the individual. To paraphrase John W. Nevin, we as individual Christians do not make up the church; rather, we as individuals become Christians by being incorporated into something much grander and greater than ourselves—the church as the mystical body of Christ.”

    Evans seems to think that Hart (and Machen) cannot have “mother kirk” and at the same time focus so much on the forgiveness of sins of individuals.

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  40. Dear John-the-also-incognito-essentially (to-me)

    John: The good news of the Gospel is deliverance from the penalty, power, and presence of sin. That is what the Gospel is? Are you sure about that?

    Yes. And people talk as if the good news is freedom to do whatever one’s flesh wants, not understanding we are no longer slaves, for where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

    John: So is the “downright painful and costly” the condition you met before God justified you?

    Don’t twist Jesus’s words about cost, nor mine about condition. Bottomline- believe Jesus

    John: My bad about my misinterpretation regarding Trump supporter. Good, so we don’t have to get into politics. I’d much rather stick with the Gospel.

    pray (Bible says); vote (Bible says(essentially so as not to be a hypocrite)); get involved in politics as lead.

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  41. Ali Incognito,

    You can click my name at oldlife and find out all sorts of things about me. I can’t do the same with you. Could you elaborate please on why you think the good news of the Gospel is deliverance from the penalty, power and presence of sin? Is that the object of your faith?

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  42. John, not sure why you ask what I think you already know. The good news is Jesus came to give life and life abundant. God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus Eph 2 4-6

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  43. Ali Incognito,

    I ask because I believed a false Gospel for many years that I was convinced at the time was not a false Gospel. It caused me all sorts of problems that I could not resolve.

    You did not really answer the question I asked. I will shorten the question, why do you think the good news of the Gospel is deliverance from the “power and presence of sin?” Do you mean by that that the justified Christian no longer experiences the “power and presence of sin” in their life? Is that power and presence just diminished or is it no longer there anymore? And how does that happen? Do you really believe that? And why is that the good news of the Gospel?

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  44. What if the power and presence of sin does not go away in my life? Does that mean that I really do not believe in the Gospel? That does not sound like very good news to me.

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  45. John Yeazel: Ali Incognito, I ask because I believed a false Gospel for many years that I was convinced at the time was not a false Gospel. It caused me all sorts of problems that I could not resolve.

    That’s why I suggested you hang out with Jesus (aka study of the word and prayer). God will set you straight by His word and Spirit about it all, but you seemed to reject that idea and I don’t really have another good suggestion.

    John: That does not sound like very good news to me.

    Oh, I thought you weren’t just asking me my personal opinion or wanting to adapt the definition to your personal felt experience. I thought you were actually asking for what the Lord says is the good news.

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  46. Ok John. Take care.

    Of course you already knew that being saved from the power of sin is very slow and progressive and also that we are saved from the presence of sin when we get our new gloried bodies.

    Being convinced it’s helpful (since the Lord says so) not to enable each other’s sin-justifying; the denying of His power; nor distortion, ignoring, minimizing, pretending you don’t know any of His word, I couldn’t play your game.

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  47. Ali Incognito,

    I’ll comment back now that you have decided to at least address one of the questions I asked. I don’t think we get saved from the power of sin. I think we get saved from the guilt and condemnation of sin. There is a big difference.

    I’m not sure what Scripture passages you are referring to in regards to where Jesus says to not enable each other’s sin- justifying. Enable is such a psycho-babble word. I cringe when I hear that word from past experience. It brings back bad memories. Those who like to emphasize the exhortation against sin-justifying often neglect the other end of the spectrum verses like Galatians 6:1-5: Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

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  48. Isn’t guilt under the law the very definition of the power of sin? Didn’t Christ Himself die to the power of sin? And wasn’t that power the guilt of the elect under the law demanding death?

    Romans 6: 9 we know that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will not die again. Death NO LONGER rules over Him. 10 For in light of the fact that He died, He died to sin once for all; but in light of the fact that He lives, He lives to God. 11 So, you too consider yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, so that you obey its desires. 13 And do not offer any parts[ of it to sin as weapons for unrighteousness. But as those who are alive from the dead, offer yourselves to God, and all the parts of yourselves to God as tools for righteousness. 14 For sin will NOT rule over you, BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT UNDER LAW but under grace.

    Nevin trusted in God’s infused righteousness, defined as God’s presence in Nevin. Nevin trusted in Nevin’s presence in God’s presence.

    The apostle Paul trusted not only in Christ the person but also in Christ the person who in history died for His elect under the power of sin….

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  49. In the “all about Hart” department, notice his short essay “Religion But not Too Much” in the new Books and Culture (Nov, dec 2015), p 29

    “They saw faith informing everything a Christian did. They objected to the idea of neutrality as a fiction that could be used to exclude Christians from office…. The desire for more Christianity in higher education is no guarantee of the quality of the Christianity>’

    https://www.mtholyoke.edu/~edgoodwi/Hart.html

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  50. John: Those who like to emphasize the exhortation against sin-justifying often neglect the other end of the spectrum

    Maybe and visa versa. Can’t exhort too much to know the whole counsel of God unless you’re looking for excuses and people to blame. Sorry for your prior difficulties, but you can’t let man and experiences change God’s word or what you think about God. Pretty sure when you see Him, if you were to try to finger-pointing it won’t go over. Adam and Eve’s was disgusting.

    1 John 2:1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;

    John : Ali Incognito, I don’t think we get saved from the power of sin. I think we get saved from the guilt and condemnation of sin. There is a big difference.

    You can think whatever you want, but that doesn’t change reality. Then you have a very small view of God, you do not believe God, and you may not have interest in His plan to conform us to Jesus’s image.
    Don’t have a form of godliness, but deny its power. We’re supposed to avoid those types. (2 Tim 3:5). His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness.2 Pet 1:1-4

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  51. McMark says: Isn’t guilt under the law the very definition of the power of sin? Didn’t Christ Himself die to the power of sin? And wasn’t that power the guilt of the elect under the law demanding death?

    John Y: That was the point I was getting at in a round about way. It is the guilt and condemnation inherited from Adam that all of humanity is born into. I was trying to distinguish between the guilt and condemnation and the pollution and power of sin. What comes first, the guilt and condemnation or the pollution and power? Adam was not born guilty and condemned- Adam and Eve passed on to their descendants the guilt and condemnation of their sin. The guilt and condemnation is the root of the pollution and power of sin. Am I right to assume that it was the other way around for Adam and Eve? The fall into sin through the temptation resulted in Adam and Eve’s guilt and condemnation. Therefore all of Adam and Eve’s descendants are born guilty and condemned and sin’s power, when confronted with the Law, keeps Adam and Eve’s descendants guilty and condemned under the Law.

    All this then leads to the question of what Christ dealt with on the cross- the guilt and condemnation inherited from Adam and Eve or the pollution and power of sin? And is the divine nature talked about in 2Peter 1:1-4 the new ability to overcome the power of sin? That is what I was really wanting to get at. Following from that is the whole idea of the struggle between flesh and Spirit. Is the Christian life more of struggle between flesh and Spirit or a non-identity with the Law when the elect is placed into the death of Christ?

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  52. To put it another way, a non-identity with the Law and a new identity with the Gospel. Christ took away the guilt and condemnation of the Law for the elect and the elect alone. Sin then loses its power because it can no longer condemn the elect. That is where the power comes from not from the divine nature. The divine nature keeps the elect believing the Gospel which is the power of God. That is the big difference I was talking about.

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  53. The power is in the objective Gospel, not in a power change in my subjective ontological being. The internal change is the gift of faith (a new heart) that keeps the elect believing the Gospel.

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  54. John: That is where the power comes from not from the divine nature.

    John, please. Please don’t diminish His extravagant grace of power and provision to us.
    We’re new creations- granted to participate in His divine nature through Christ living in us now and being given new glorified bodies like Jesus’s then.

    We’re headed to a place where only righteousness dwells (2 Peter 3:13) and while we’re here, those who are righteous are to practice righteousness (1 John 3:7). We don’t have the power; God gives it to us. There are some who want to eliminate the truth that His royal law of life and love is everlasting and His words do not pass away. Or is He just kidding us?

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  55. Ali Incognito,

    You’re sounding like an evangelical and arminian now. The elect get placed into a new creation, i.e., a new legal state. You’re interpretation of Paul’s letter’s needs some overhaul and adjustment in my humble opinion. Next are you going to tell me that there is a final justification based on how righteous we are in our inner selves? How progressed in righteousness are you? Does God grade on a curve? What got you hooked in posting at oldlife? You’re more of a misfit than I am here. For much different reasons though.

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  56. Growing in the grace and knowledge of Christ is more and more seeing your own righteousness as worthless and Christ’s righteousness of priceless value. From Philippians chapter 3: 3 For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh– 4 though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. 7 But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith– 10 that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

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  57. t’s not all about MEEE John, but here same reason as the rest – interest in reformed faith and practice.

    And you? Based on your inappropriate videos (for this site) and your denial of scripture re:practice righteousness, is it to promote lawlessness?

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  58. I make no claims to false pretenses regarding my personal piety. Are you scolding me, Ali Incognito? My beef is that the self-righteous sins do not garner the same attention as the obvious works of the flesh. The more subtle self-righteous get away with their sins all the time. I’m not denying Scripture either. You can only practice righteousness when you know the true Gospel. My contention is still that you believe a different Gospel than I do.

    Interest in Reformed faith and practice- does that mean that you do not consider yourself Reformed?

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  59. Ali Incognito says: And you? Based on your inappropriate videos (for this site) and your denial of scripture re:practice righteousness, is it to promote lawlessness?

    John Y: I started visiting this site back in 2007 or 2008, I believe. I read many of DGH’s books back then while I was a confessional Lutheran. I was also an avid reader of Modern Reformation magazine and was always curious about the differences and similarities between confessional Lutherans and confessional Reformed. So, I started participating in the theological debates that went on here. Due to those theological discussions I am no longer a confessional Lutheran. I also have reservations about some confessional Reformed beliefs but I like the vigorous debate that often goes on here. I don’t visit here as much as I used to but I appreciate what I learn here.

    In regards to my “inappropriate” video’s- I was asked to be more edgy so I obliged. Believe me, there have been a lot more inappropriate video’s here in the past 7 or 8 years than the ones I linked. Those were fairly tame- why don’t you pick on Sean?

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  60. John: The elect get placed into a new creation, i.e., a new legal state.

    We ARE a new creation – born again of imperishable seed, born of the Spirit

    John: The more subtle self-righteous get away with their sins all the time.

    By who? God see everything

    John: You can only practice righteousness when you know the true Gospel.

    You can only practice righteousness by the Spirit given as a gift at new birth. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. Rom 8:8-9

    John: My contention is still that you believe a different Gospel than I do.

    that’s possible; can’t tell for sure

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  61. John: I was asked to be more edgy so I obliged.

    It is interesting for that to go to a site like this for that… hmm, thinking about that ….I mean, is it better, at least that you’re here and might absorb some beneficial faith content, even though contaminating others in the process; or is it just too much the height of hypocrisy.

    anyway, just a reminder, finger pointing and blame shifting doesn’t go over too well with the Lord

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  62. Oh wait John. At least your one video of evil reapers, etc. may not have been inappropriate… even was spiritual warfare maybe ..

    “We can laugh as we dress our children in images of death because we know that death no longer has a hold on God’s people. “ “we can mock darkness” @ http://www.reformation21.org this am

    thinking he probably has never been chased around by a demon

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  63. Ali Incognito,

    You’re too sneaky for me, Ali. You don’t answer my direct questions. To steal a phrase from the Catholics, your theology is a regeneration and Spirit power- rich “paradigm.” The “paradigm” of the theology I believe in is Atonement and Christ righteousness rich. I don’t deny regeneration (we probably have different understandings of what that is) but without Atonement and and imputation of Christ’s righteousness there is no Spirit regeneration. The two differing paradigm’s are different Gospels.

    I’m not sure of your point in your last post.

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  64. John: Those were fairly tame- why don’t you pick on Sean?

    Ali: finger pointing and blame shifting doesn’t go over too well with the Lord

    ..…not that there won’t be accountability for the accountable-ones or that you couldn’t go ahead and rename sean, “ sean-the-inciter” (1 Kings 21:25), or something

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  65. Are you telling me, Ali, that you have never finger pointed and blame shifted? Jesus even died for those sins of his elect sheep. You need to watch some Coen brother movies? I’m finger pointing and blame shifting again- habitual sinner that I am.

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  66. only finger pointers truly know about finger pointing, right? Can we agree (along with mud and cw) to just call each other hypocrites and can we just say we sure seem to assume the worst of others

    …but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

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  67. sure, but not sure what else to say. I’m just a Bible quoter. The Gospel is the good news of God’s plan of redemption – salvation – the deliverance from the penalty, power, and presence of sin.

    Read Jesus (the Bible) , Believe Jesus… and weep, John .
    We (His own) are being adopted to sonship through Jesus Christ in accordance with the pleasure and will of the God Of The Universe (Eph 1:5)

    Try not to have a good day after remembering that.

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  68. Perhaps there was some miscommunication. I was agreeing with this:

    “…but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” Scolding, threatening, piling on guilt and condemnation rarely accomplishes its intent.

    I’m not clear on what you meant by your other comment on that post. None of us live up to the ethical standards written in either the Old or New Covenants- even though we are commanded to obey them. Ought does not necessarily imply ability. Your Gospel definition is inadequate. However, I am sure we will discuss that again on other threads. That is, if you and I still “hang out” here.

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  69. oops, ought clarify this John – there is actually one non-finger pointer who understand finger pointers

    Hebrews 4:14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

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  70. However, “find grace to help in time of need” is open to a large variety of interpretation. Those who want to conflate Law and Gospel will probably interpret that differently from those who see antithesis in Law and Gospel.

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  71. John: However, “find grace to help in time of need” is open to a large variety of interpretation. Those who want to conflate Law and Gospel will probably interpret that differently from those who see antithesis in Law and Gospel.

    Not sure what you have in mind, but not really, John. There’s only one Lord and one Word and one interpretation but many applications. “Find grace in time of need”: for 1) power to resist sin e.g 1Cor 10:13; 2) forgiveness eg 1 John 2:1

    If one insists on only one or the other, it seems they are disagreeing with God, denying His word, and exposing their proclivity

    We are to encourage one another against sin because sin always harms and hardens and hardening is ever more destructive. Can’t we each attest to that? And we are to encourage each other about our forgiven status since we will sin until eternity.

    encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. Heb 3: 13

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  72. Law is Law and Gospel is Gospel- never the twain shall meet. Jesus fulfilled the Law for His sheep. The Law still convicts the sheep. The sheep’s only comfort and assurance is the Gospel. The only power to resist sin is through the Gospel.

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  73. Sin can no longer condemn the sheep because of the Gospel. Part of the deceitfulness of sin is thinking we can fulfill the Law without the Gospel or with the help of the Spirit.

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  74. Hey John,

    I see you’ve been contaminated with the mantra. Heard it a lot on the ‘air waves’. So, I don’t think we need go round and round anymore cause, you’ve got your comfort –that being your mantra- rather than Jesus, perhaps.

    Part of the definition of a mantra is that it may or may not have meaning and that’s what I say here. Don’t think what I said contradicts what you say, but not sure, can’t tell, but you must be taking exception to it, so I don’t know what to say – I’m just a Bible quoter.

    As I previously thought, you may not think there is a ‘third use of the law’ and in that case I say you may not know the Lord, don’t believe His word, may think He is just kidding us or worse, tormenting us, about all of His word on pressing on, etc. As I originally thought – you deny we the righteous (called that, having had it imputed to us), are to practice righteousness. Of course, the practice is imperfect but is accepted by the Lord because of Jesus.

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  75. Charles Hodge–“One’s interpretation of Romans 8 verse 4 is determined by the view taken of Romans 8:3. If that verse means that God, by sending His Son, destroyed sin in us, then, of course, this verse must mean, “He destroyed sin in order that we should fulfill the law” — that is, so that we should be holy (sanctification). But if Romans 8:3 refers to the sacrificial death of Christ and to the condemnation of sin in Him as the sinners’ substitute, then this verse must refer to justification and not sanctification.”

    John Calvin on Romans 8 4–“That the justification of the law be fulfilled, etc. They who understand that the renewed, by the Spirit of Christ, fulfill the law, introduce a gloss wholly alien to the meaning of Paul; for the faithful, while they sojourn in this world, never make such a proficiency, as that the justification of the law becomes in them full or complete. This then must be applied to forgiveness; for when the obedience of Christ is accepted for us, the law is satisfied, so that we are counted just.”

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  76. If you don’t know the Gospel, you don’t know Jesus.

    agreed, and if you don’t know Jesus, you don’t know the gospel

    gonna make a conclusion, John – based on 1) your boast that previous ‘piety’ encouragers having been driven away from this site 2) you not embracing the whole of God’s word 3) your videos 4) you ever resisting sin-resisting talk – that you may be a poser . Sorry to be so blunt, we all are entitled to our opinion, not interested in games.

    A person with the indwelling Spirit of the living God is compelled to be interested in what the Lord is interested in; no choice- it’s His work; albeit in somewhat varying degrees and of course we can quench, resist, grieve His Spirit;
    nonetheless, as it’s His work, it always be His work moving us ever toward Him –and toward ‘piety’, that is, in the direction of devotion to God, that is , in the direction of holiness.

    You just doth protest too much about that direction.

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  77. Ali Incognito,

    You’re putting your own spin on the things I’ve said: 1) I never “boasted” about the “pious” being “driven away.” The pious are allowed to go on and on here for a long time. They eventually just go away- they don’t have to be “driven” away; 2) That is your spin and interpretation that I don’t embrace the whole of God’s Word; 3) the video’s I linked- I already explained that one; 4) My resisting sin-resisting talk- I already explained that one too. I reckon myself dead to sin but alive because of Christ’s righteousness imputed. That makes me zealous for good works and dead to dead works. You and I have a big disconnect in regards what the Scriptures actually teach.

    If you are not interested in playing games (unlike me is the implication) than don’t be Ali Incognito anymore. I’m an open book- your not. Me’s thinks you’re not as holy and devoted as you think you are. I find the Gospel in the Word of God and I love the Gospel. I read the Scriptures distinguishing between the Law and the Gospel. I have no hope “under the Law.” I am redeemed and justified “in Christ.” Personally, I really could care less what you think of me. The only thing that matters to me is if I am still “in Adam” or if God the Father has placed me “in Christ.” And how I can be assured about that.

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  78. You judge and see “evidences” based on outward conduct (that can be done in the flesh) and you don’t judge by the Gospel. I’d say you also judge by what you think the Gospel is. I think we are clear now though that you and I believe different Gospels. And you really should not care what I think either. Due to the fact that there are many false Gospels out there, I think we have to be very interested in the question, what is the true Gospel? Due to the remaining influence of sin we are all prone to twist, turn and distort the true Gospel. We like taking some of the credit for our “faith” and “holiness.” We can even “humbly” give credit to the Spirit. We rob Christ of the glory when we put ourselves or the Spirit in the place of how we get justified and grow in grace.

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  79. See the beauty of our God here John – our God – Father, Son, Spirit:

    1 Peter 1:1To those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen 2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

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  80. It can’t be “our” God, Ali, if I am a Poser:
    [poh-zer]
    Spell Syllables
    Examples Word Origin
    noun
    1.
    a person who poses.
    2.
    a poseur, especially a person who is trendy or fashionable in a superficial way.

    John Y: I’m not the one trying to make myself smell like a rose when I know I’m just a dandelion in the way I practice “righteousness.” Interpret the Scripture passage, Ali, and what you want me to see about it Maybe some of your faith and righteousness will rub off on me.

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  81. What is “authentic” Christian community?:

    To Scott and Kimberly’s way of thinking, a community of authentic Christians meant a community of people who had committed themselves to behave a certain way; to acknowledge their need, to seek to feel close to God, to turn from sin, and to make Jesus the Lord of their life. They sought a place where behavior modification was in daily practice. In other words, they sought a community of people who worshiped the flesh and placed full confidence in their self righteousness.

    A careful study of the Scriptures however, presents an entirely different picture of what an authentic Christian community is like. It consists of a community of people who place no confidence in their flesh for they believe their righteousness is found in Christ Jesus alone. They are not always the nicest people. They can sometimes be quite smug and arrogant (Corinthians), flippant and uncaring (James), depressing and emotional (Ephesians, Philippians). Some are grossly immoral (Corinthians), while others are philosophically gross (Colossians). Some are almost cultic in their fascination with eschatology (Thessalonians) while others almost cultic in their fascination with stories of spirits and angels (Colossians). And yet every one of them are a gospel community, every one of them an authentic, local body of Christ.

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  82. John Y: I’m not the one trying to make myself smell like a rose when I know I’m just a dandelion in the way I practice “righteousness.” Interpret the Scripture passage, Ali, and what you want me to see about it Maybe some of your faith and righteousness will rub off on me.

    Dear John-the-potential-poser (not posy), 🙂 you don’t seem to mind my being blunt so I’ll continue….. potential poser (continued) because:

    1) you seem to want to keep wanting to diminish God the Spirit.

    2) Your quote-using-sarcasm around ‘practice righteousness’ seems to mock God’s word…. Does “did God really say that?” sound familiar John

    If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone also who practices righteousness is born of Him. 1 John 2:29;Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; 1 Joh 3:7;By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother. 1 John 3:10; let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness Rev 22:11

    3) You don’t seem to like the word ‘resist’ related to darkness

    Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:7-8

    4) You seem to like to embrace darkness (your video). Happy Halloween.

    Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Pet 5:8

    5) True faith is not simply a gospel mantra

    good post there this am: http://www.ligonier.org/blog/faith-and-works/ “We are not saved by a profession of faith or by a claim to faith.”

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  83. Very good, Ali. Your 5 points will allow me to compare and contrast our contradictory Gospels. And the post you linked from the Edwardsian, Augustinian, Thomistic Calvinist, R.C. Sproul, illustrates and illuminates the contrast succinctly. However, there are some good works (not dead works) I have to get ready to perform today so I will have to respond to your comment later.

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  84. Ali Incognito,

    You at least have to tell me how old you are. My assumption is that you are under 40 and have not committed any “bone headed” (to steal a phrase from Erik Charter) or severely serious sins in your life yet. At least not “bone headed” or severely serious in your own mind.

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  85. I guess I’m being rebuked in similar fashion as Dan Quayle:

    Very intimidating but not really relevant to the point I am trying to get at. At least I am safe these days from getting twice baptized and holding my head under water until I can’t breath anymore. That’s what Zwingli did to a Anabaptist leader he used to have bible studies with.

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  86. I think McCulley has been hinting at me to stop commenting (although I am not sure). So maybe it is in the best interest of the “little boat” I am involved with to refrain from saying anymore.

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  87. It seems all is clear on the western front. I’m peeping out of my fox hole timidly. Now that I have been put in my place I can comment back to Ali knowing that my comment carries about as much weight as five feathers. Here goes:

    1) Ali says- “you seem to want to keep wanting to diminish God the Spirit.” John Y: I’m of the persuasion that legal or forensic union with Christ has logical priority and is the cause of the sending of the Spirit. That is the only way to make sense of the justification of the ungodly and Romans 4:17- ” as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”–in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.” The placing into the death of Christ and the declaration by God of not guilty is the cause of the work of the Spirit, i.e., regeneration and faith. If the elect need to be regenerated by the Spirit first, before the imputation of the benefits of Christ’s work get applied, then that is not a justification of the ungodly or God giving life to the dead and calling into existence the things that do not exist.

    2) Ali says: “Your quote-using-sarcasm around ‘practice righteousness’ seems to mock God’s word…. Does “did God really say that?” sound familiar John.” John Y: Satan said that to Eve before the fall. After the fall man does not have the ability to fulfill the Law of God. Christ is the only one who could fulfill the Law of God in the place of the elect who had been chosen before the creation of the world. Practicing righteousness, like walking in the Spirit, is believing the Gospel that condemned sin in the flesh. Christ has taken away the guilt and condemnation of all the elect’s sin.

    3) Ali says: You don’t seem to like the word ‘resist’ related to darkness

    Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:7-8 John Y: The only way a fallen sinner can resist darkness is to submit to the righteousness found only in Christ. That’s what submission to God is. We cleanse our hands and purify our hearts by having the righteous death of Christ imputed to us and reckoning this so. That is our only hope of resisting the darkness.

    4) Ali says: You seem to like to embrace darkness (your video). Happy Halloween.

    Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Pet 5:8 John Y: I was hardly embracing darkness by linking the nihilistic music video. I was mocking the request to be edgy. We become alert and sober when we submit to the righteousness of Christ and believe the Gospel. That is the only way to beat the devil. He knows we still are inherent sinners so he can condemn us anytime. We are only protected due to the righteous death of Christ. Do you really think your own righteousness has any credibility to the devil?

    5) Ali says: True faith is not simply a gospel mantra; John Y: True faith can only happen when God the Father places his elect children into the death of Christ. You seen to be saying that true faith is something that fallen man adds to the Gospel. That turns faith into a work and a condition, even if you say it is caused by the Spirit before the benefits of Christ can be applied. And that answers the Sproul post too.

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  88. “After the fall man does not have the ability to fulfill the Law of God.”

    Natural man, yes. Otherwise this is false.
    “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.””
    “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”
    “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”
    “Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”
    “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”
    “If, however, you are fulfilling the royal law according to the Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing right.”
    “For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.”
    “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
    “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.”

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  89. No one can believe the true Gospel without submitting to the righteousness of Christ and repenting of any hope that their “practice of righteousness” carries any weight with God the Father. As Paul says, not having a righteousness of my own and boasting only in the cross of Christ.

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  90. Sanctifying grace (infusion of faith hope and love) which fulfills the law is only possible because of what Christ did in the first place. So no I dont think I can do what Jesus did nor did the NT writers above who affirm Christians can and do fulfill the law.

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  91. If you think you can fulfill the law than you are still under the law. You seek to rob Christ of his glory as the only one who did fulfill the law. I don’t think that makes the Father happy when you try to rob His Son of His glory. And Christ fulfilled the law as a substitute for His sheep. This is the love of God, that He laid down His life for His sheep. Therefore His sheep can say, I died with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives inside me. It is Christ’s righteousness that gives life to His sheep. The Spirit is life because of righteousness.

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  92. Take it up with the NT writers who didnt get your memo. Fulfilling the law through the gifts Christ merited for us does not rob Him of glory any more than us becoming partakers of the divine nature does. That actually glorifies Him far more than your position and zero-sum paranoia. And youre right it is Christ who lives within believers which is why they fulfill the law.

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  93. The Reformed and Evangelicals who agree with you, Cletus, play right into your hands with how you understand “fulfilling the law” and “partakers of the divine nature.” Those issues have been dealt with numerous times here by appealing to both the N.T. writers and various theologians commenting on the texts from Romans 8:3-4 and 1 and 2 Peter. Putting the Catholic spin on those texts makes a different Gospel. Horton deals with those issues quite masterfully in his book, COVENANT AND SALVATION UNION WITH CHRIST. The issue again has to be hashed out in regards to when, how and why union with Christ occurs. That has been gone over here time and time again and there has been various views expressed. The various views are not the same Gospel. There are many false Gospels but only one true Gospel. The righteousness of Christ is the imperishable seed protected and progressively revealed from Genesis to Revelation. Only the elect will believe the one true Gospel that glories in the righteousness of the only righteous one. Christ won immortality for the mortal born elect. I’m making assertions that have all been shown from N.T. texts and non-Catholic theologians. Would you like to go on for another 1000 comments?

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  94. If that is “zero-sum paranoia” than so be it. The Apostle Paul was the king of the paranoia along with being the “chief of sinners.” He was beat-up, spit upon, flogged and had stones thrown at him because he challenged those who thought their righteousness was worthy of comparison to the imperishable seed of Christ. Counter-intuitively, good works flow from that belief and those who believe in the imperishable seed of Christ get accused of being antinomians. Not much has changed in that regard since Christ has been resurrected from the dead.

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  95. And the good works have nothing to do with “fulfilling the Law” like Christ did. They come far short of fulfilling the law but they please the Father because of the work of Christ imputed to the elect alone.

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  96. John: Practicing righteousness, like walking in the Spirit, is believing the Gospel that condemned sin in the flesh.

    practicing righteousness = walking in the Spirit = obedience. It’s ok to say the “o” word.
    Sometimes it hard to figure why you might think believers are still here after they are reborn

    John: I was mocking the request to be edgy.

    now you’re not only explaining but justifying; talk about self-righteousness

    He (the devil) knows we still are inherent sinners so he can condemn us anytime.

    just a clarification – it is GOD who condemns (and as you say there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ); the devil does accuse day and night though

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  97. John Yeazel: You’re better than me, Ali. You’ll have more diamonds in your crown- I’ll throw my diamond-less crown down.

    Morning John. Hope you also see your “ I’m better than you”.
    After all, you ‘get’ the Gospel better; you will be more humble about your crown; you make a better, more obvious case for your anti-piety stand than I do for piety; your lack-of-boast-but-only-in Christ is more sincere than mine 

    Good time to once again just agree to call each other hypocrites and say we sure seem to like to think the worst of each other. 🙂

    Muddy; “i love cw” Eeeeeew.

    and you too Muddy , though as the unificator, he has a slight edge, though, thinking lately, unificator of what exactly, now? 🙂

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