Posted tagged ‘justification by precision’

Since God is Sovereign, Does It Even Matter how precise you are about the Gospel?

January 30, 2016

Tolerant Calvinists i tell us that, while Arminians may THINK that their salvation is conditioned on them, those Arminians are still saved and that this their salvation is not conditioned on them. After all, they say, they are not “stingy with the love of God”.

Does this mean that God loved the elder brother in spite of his legalism? Since most of those tolerant Calvinists claim that God has an universal “non-saving love” for all sinners, I am sure they would say that God does love “in some way” that elder brother.

But is that elder brother justified before God? Must the one who came home from the hog pen confess that the elder brother is his brother? Back in the days when I became an universalist, I said yes: all are brothers.

What do you say? I do not ask if you think the elder brother was non-elect in the secret counsels of God. Rather I ask—is a legalist already regenerate and justified while still left in his legalism? Are “good sincere people” saved also, despite their being deceived about their sins and about the gospel?

Is the love of God so weak that it cannot save a person who remains a legalist? In spite of his legalism? Is the love of God so weak that it cannot save a person who remains an Arminian? In spite of his Arminianism?

My answer is that the love of God is so powerful that it CONVERTS the sinner. The sinner is not saved BECAUSE OF his turning from from the false or BECAUSE OF his faith in the true gospel, but the sinner CONVERTED BY GOD does have faith in the gospel. The sinner is not saved BECAUSE he understands and submits to the righteousness obtained by Christ’s death for the elect, but the converted sinner will understand and submit to that righteousness.

The converted sinner will believe the gospel BECAUSE OF THAT RIGHTEOUSNESS. Romans 8:10– the Spirit is life because of righteousness.” What God did at the cross is not merely “potential”. The power of true doctrine cross is used by the Holy Spirit to “crucify” sinners so that they understand that salvation is not conditioned on the sinner. We should not presume that any man who does not know this is our brother.

But tolerant Calvinists won’t say this when it comes to submitting to effective atonement. Sometimes some of them suggest it when it comes to those “who only walked the aisles” But they won’t say it about it legalists. And all Arminians are legalists.

Because anybody who says that Christ died for everybody but some of them are not saved MUST be looking to the sinner as the difference between saved and lost. Even if the legalist gives his god or election the “credit” for the difference, he MUST locate that difference in what he thinks his god is doing in himself and not in what Christ did at the cross.

I understand that you believe that Jesus died only for some. But you think knowing about this death is not necessary. It is the cause, sure; but you don’t think they need to know that it’s the cause.

Tolerant Calvinists like to sneer at “hyper_Calvinists” un-named and un-defined) but in effect they agree with the Primitive Baptists that people can be converted without hearing the gospel. Either that, or these tolerant Calvinists think that Christ died for you and everybody” is still the gospel.

They say John the Baptist was, and that people can be converted “directly” without the message of the cross. So they think it doesn’t matter if the elect hear the true gospel or the Arminian gospel or any gospel.

I reject this. I know that the non-elect will refuse the gospel. I know that the elect must be made alive in regeneration (on account of imputed righteousness) before they will submit to the gospel. But I also know that people need to hear the gospel before they can believe it. (I Peter 1:22-23).

To obey the truth, they must hear the truth. To believe the Word, they must hear the Word. Those who have never heard anything but the Arminian gospel have not yet heard the gospel, and are still lost in their sins.

We are not liberals. We know that not all men are our brothers. It is good and necessary to focus on the elder brother’s refusal to say that the one who came home was his brother. My question: WERE they brothers? If the elder brother goes on like he is, never repenting of his legalism, is he in the family of God?

The tolerant Calvinist assumption, adapted to their purpose of being intolerant and attacking “these people” who say that Arminians are lost, is that both brothers in the parable are brothers in Christ, not only in the flesh. But that is a false assumption.

Though Cain and Abel are brothers in the flesh, both creatures of God, made in the image of God, not both were justified before God. The one who came home was justified; the elder brother is still in condemnation. They ultimately do not have the same home or the same gospel or the same God.

We need to know what the gospel is. And we need to say that those who reject the gospel are condemned already. John 3:17-21 “He who DOES THE TRUTH comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

There is no pleasing God without faith in God’s gospel. We “do the truth” only when we confess that salvation is not caused by our deeds but “done in God”. The “good works” of Christians are necessary but they are not “good works” unless the sinner has understood that his salvation is conditioned on what God did at the cross and not on these works. Faith must exclude itself as the condition of salvation, or it is not faith in the gospel and is not pleasing to God.

Workers must exclude works as the condition of salvation, or they are not ‘good works” and the people who do them are elder brothers, not yet in the family of God, but still lost in their sins. Elder brothers do not “do the truth”. They can talk much of their works, but they will not bring these works to the light of the true gospel, for the true gospel would say that their works were not acceptable.