Belief in the individual Christian's ability to lose salvation
#11
(06-22-2009, 04:31 PM)Melita Wrote: Isn't this problem due to the heretical teachings of Calvin? More protestant wickedness.

Not just Calvin. Jakob Harmenszoon, aka Jacobus Arminius, founder of the Arminian system of theology taught pretty much the same thing.
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#12
The particular sects we grew up in held to Arminianism.  Calvinism frankly makes a whole lot more sense.  Arminianism rejects the Catholic dogma of predestination for the notion that we choose God, not He chooses whom He will and gives them the graces to know and love Him.  They don't believe Original Sin has tainted free will, such that we're only truly free to choose the good after we've received grace. Instead, they think we make the initial move towards God. (Hence baptism of people only after the age of reason, once they've prayed the sinners prayer and "accepted Jesus.")  I'm not sure how they'd react to the idea that if our nature is drawn to the good, that is itself of grace.

Though I don't recall anyone in that sect actually arguing against predestination.  Much like everything else, they didn't seem to put thought into it. Based on my own initial horror about predestination, I'm pretty sure they'd scream like banshees if someone suggested Calvin's ideas, or the Catholic teaching.
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#13
(06-22-2009, 04:47 PM)goggleeyes Wrote: The particular sects we grew up in held to Arminianism.  Calvinism frankly makes a whole lot more sense.  Arminianism rejects the Catholic dogma of predestination for the notion that we choose God, not He chooses whom He will and gives them the graces to know and love Him.  They don't believe Original Sin has tainted free will, such that we're only truly free to choose the good after we've received grace. Instead, they think we make the initial move towards God. (Hence baptism of people only after the age of reason, once they've prayed the sinners prayer and "accepted Jesus.") 

Now I'm a bit confused (not that it's hard to confuse me! :laughing:). Classical Wesleyan Methodism was Arminian in theology and they've always been paedobaptists.
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#14
I must have been thinking of semi-arminianism, then.  You're right about the Methodists.  I wasn't raised Methodist but Assembly of God.  They...are even more confused and messed up.  That's the most charitable way of putting it. I'm pretty sure the AOG officially considers baptism a precept (only of those above the age of reason, though), but the ones we grew up in hardly ever performed baptisms.  If you really wanted to be, they'd do it, but the "important" thing was "being saved," and even many of the leaders never bothered about baptism.
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#15
(06-22-2009, 05:01 PM)jovan66102 Wrote:
(06-22-2009, 04:47 PM)goggleeyes Wrote: The particular sects we grew up in held to Arminianism.  Calvinism frankly makes a whole lot more sense.  Arminianism rejects the Catholic dogma of predestination for the notion that we choose God, not He chooses whom He will and gives them the graces to know and love Him.  They don't believe Original Sin has tainted free will, such that we're only truly free to choose the good after we've received grace. Instead, they think we make the initial move towards God. (Hence baptism of people only after the age of reason, once they've prayed the sinners prayer and "accepted Jesus.") 

Now I'm a bit confused (not that it's hard to confuse me! :laughing:). Classical Wesleyan Methodism was Arminian in theology and they've always been paedobaptists.

always?

I know they don't have the tank behind the altar, but I think I've seen Methodists waiting to baptize after the age of reason.

no?
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#16
(06-22-2009, 05:41 PM)libby Wrote: always?

I know they don't have the tank behind the altar, but I think I've seen Methodists waiting to baptize after the age of reason.

no?

Then they violate their own doctrine:

(Twenty Five) Articles of Religion of the Methodist Church (my emphasis) Wrote:Article XVII—Of Baptism

Baptism is not only a sign of profession and mark of difference whereby Christians are distinguished from others that are not baptized; but it is also a sign of regeneration or the new birth. The Baptism of young children is to be retained in the Church.

The Articles were prepared by their founder, John Wesley, based on the XXXIX Articles of the Church of England and are still an official statement of the Methodist faith.
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#17
thanks, Jovan -

:)

When I've gone to Protestant services( for a funeral,wedding, baptism ), I've honestly gotten all of the denominations confused...that was before I saw the Betty Butterfield videos - cleared everything up for me!

I try not to attend those anymore.

;)
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#18
I don’t have any philosophical comments.  I just wanted to pop in and say that the teaching of "once saved, always saved" seems like a false assurance; presumption.

We can have assurance of salvation as long as we abide in God's grace and keep his commandments. We can have assurance that God desires our salvation. He is on our side..

St. Paul says toward the end of his life: "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day" (2 Tim. 4:7-8).

The Christian life is a race. Grace is the starting point. Salvation is the finish line.

- Lisa
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#19
(06-25-2009, 12:36 PM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote: I don’t have any philosophical comments.  I just wanted to pop in and say that the teaching of "once saved, always saved" seems like a false assurance; presumption.

We can have assurance of salvation as long as we abide in God's grace and keep his commandments. We can have assurance that God desires our salvation. He is on our side..

St. Paul says toward the end of his life: "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day" (2 Tim. 4:7-8).

The Christian life is a race. Grace is the starting point. Salvation is the finish line.

- Lisa

exactly! When a baptist visited out bible study and we asked him questions about his faith and he asked questions about ours, he said at one point "I KNOW I am going to heaven a 100%!" Someone said that was presumptuous but they guy said that to believe otherwise was a sign of a lack of faith.  :o
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#20
OK, here's some thoughts about "once saved, always saved," from one who grew up with this teaching.

First, God saves the elect for eternal life. Eternal life doesn't just start after physical death, it starts here and now, once one has been justified by God.

Second, many Protestants separate justification (pardoning of sin) and sanctification (growth in holiness). When we are justified (by grace through faith alone, by the understanding of most Prods), we are reborn into eternal life. From there, God continues to build up the believer in sanctity.

Here are some quotes from J.I Packer's "Concise Theology: A Guide to Historic [sic] Christian Beliefs" that I think shed some light on the topic (all emphases mine):

On Justification:
  "Justification is a judicial act of God pardoning sinners (wicked and ungodly persons, Rom. 4:5; 3:9-24), accepting them as just, and so putting permanently right their previously estranged relationship with himself. This justifying sentence is God's gift of righteousness (Rom. 5:15-17), his bestowal of a status of acceptance for Jesus' sake (2 Cor. 5:21). [...]
  "God's justifying decision is the judgment of the Last Day, declaring where we will spend eternity, brought forward into the present and pronounced here and now. It is the last judgment that will ever be passed on our destiny; God will never go back on it, however much Satan may appeal against God's verdict (Zech. 3:1; Rev. 12:10, Rom. 8:33-34). To be justified is to be eternally secure (Rom. 5:1-5; 8:30). [...]
  "Official Roman Catholic theology [still protesting, after all these years!] includes sanctification in the definition of justification, which it sees as a process rather than a single decisive event, and affirms that while faith contributes to our acceptance with God, our works of satisfaction and merit contribute too. Rome sees baptism, viewed as a channel of sanctifying grace, as the primary instrumental cause of justification, and the sacrament of penance, whereby congruous merit is achieved through works of satisfaction, as the supplementary restorative cause whenever the grace of God's initial acceptance is lost through mortal sin. Congruous, as distinct from condign [huh?], merit means merit that is fitting, though not absolutely necessary, for God to reward by a fresh flow of sanctifying grace. On the Roman Catholic view, therefore, believers save themselves with the help of the grace that flows from Christ through the church's sacramental system, and in this life no sense of confidence in God's grace can ordinarily be had. Such teaching is a far cry from that of Paul" (pp164-166).

On Sanctification:
  "Regeneration [i.e. justification] is birth; sanctification is growth. In regeneration, God implants desires that were not there before: desire for God, for holiness, and for the hallowing and glorifying of God's name in this world [...]. In santification, the Holy Spirit 'works in you to will and to act' according to God's purpose; what he does is prompt you to 'work out your salvation' (i.e., express it in action [ ???!!!!]) by fulfilling these new desires (Phil. 2:12-13). [...]
  "Regeneration was a momentary monergistic act of quickening the spiritually dead. As such, it was God's work alone. Sanctification, however, is in one sense synergistic--it is an ongoing cooperative process in which regenerate persons, alive to God and freed from sin's dominion (Rom. 6:11, 14-18), are required to exert themselves in sustained obedience" (p 170).

Whew! That was a lot of typing. I hope it goes some way to explain the basis for OS,AS. Any thoughts?
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