Frank wrote: ... But, unless they repent and trust solely in the mercy and sacrifice of our Lord and Savior, they are going to experience the wrath of almighty God. Psalms 14:14 The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
I love to read anything "gospel" bro. Thank you. The wrath of God is a dreadful thing, frightening, eternal to the unrepentant. Outer darkness, weeping and gnashing of teeth, "tormented in this flame". Luke 16:24. It will all happen one day, after the great day of judgment.
Meantime, the gospel bells are sounding, as you mentioned, "the mercy and sacrifice of our Lord and Saviour" who is "not willing that any should perish, but that all come to repentance".
The Quiet Christian wrote: So good to see you back, John UK. The same thing you are witnessing in Wales is happening in the US via the "megachurch movement." I'm sure some are better than others on a relative scale, but there is no real corporate worship and can have very iffy, therapeutic preaching. Many have a tie to the charismatic movement as well so it seems.
It is gracious of you brother to say so. And yes, if there is any sort of church which may remain open for the foreseeable future here in Wales, it will be the charismatic churches, because they are made up primarily of young people. Most other churches are very elderly congregations and will naturally die away and close the doors.
Therefore, if any Christian here wishes to meet together with other believers and serve the Lord with a whole heart, but who do not wish to fellowship with charismatics, they have to make do as best they can.
YIA, to show what I mean by the complexity of the work of the Spirit, here is another NT text which shows something of his work subsequent to believing the good news of the gospel.
Ephesians 1:11-14 KJV (11)Â In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: (12)Â That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. (13)Â In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, (14)Â Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
This is where you will need to decide if there are many different works of the Spirit, surrounding the conversion experience. Such as we have here, the sealing of the Spirit; in other places the baptism with the Spirit, in other places conviction of the Spirit, regeneration of the Spirit, the indwelling of the Spirit, the promise of the Spirit, and so on.
Dr. Tim wrote: In America, John, if you â€śsayâ€ť youâ€™re a Christian, youâ€™re a Christian. (Iâ€™m sure itâ€™s the same in the UK.) Thatâ€™s why we have so many â€śChristiansâ€ť like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton actively promoting sodomy and infanticide. Thatâ€™s why we have a â€śChristianâ€ť queer running for president. Thatâ€™s why we have â€śChristiansâ€ť like Jim who abhor Christian involvement in politics and yet spend all their time talking about politics. Thatâ€™s why we have â€śChristiansâ€ť by the millions who will welcome the Antichrist with open arms. And the reason we have so many â€śChristiansâ€ť like that is because so many of our churches have a come-as-you-are, leave-as-you-were mentality. Do you hear that retching sound? Thatâ€™s Jesus spewing them out of His mouth.
Thank you brother, that makes a lot of sense. I suppose the survey also includes every shade of christendom, even Catholicism and Episcopalian.
Wales has been steadily following Europe into secularism, and becoming more and more liberal. Nonconformist chapels are closing down every week, and people of "vision", so-called, are seeking to pander to the wants of outsiders, making churches which are no churches. "Christian Hedonist Church". Jesus left.
Galatians 3:1-3 KJV (1)Â O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? (2)Â This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? (3)Â Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Paul obviously is calling the believers in Galatia foolish. Why? Because although they had been soundly converted through the preaching of the cross, some folks had come in and were beginning to add other things to "faith" as a means of justification; namely, the keeping of the commandments.
Paul remonstrates with them, asking them if they received the Holy Ghost through "faith" or through the "works of the law". Obviously he expects them to answer, "Through faith."
He then tells them, "Look, you began your Christian life by faith in Jesus Christ, and are justified. Do you now imagine you can be sanctified by keeping the law?"
YIA, this will always be the way of false teachers, to add one single thing to the work of Christ crucified and resurrected. You stick with faith in Jesus and you will be all right.
Youth in Asia wrote: And so they repented, called on the name of the Lord, received His word, got saved, and got Baptised. You cannot know from this verse when they received the Holy Spirit, was it after repentance, or after their baptism?
Hello YIA, perhaps we ought to just check the verse again, eh?
Acts 2:38 KJV (38)Â Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye **shall** receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Seems plain enough.
But you are worried that water baptism seemingly is required to receive the "gift of the Holy Ghost"? Understandable, if that was the only text in the Bible.
As I said to J4, the working of the Holy Ghost is very complex, and there is a prior work of the Spirit in the mind before ever the sinner believed and was saved. The Spirit of God was involved with Peter the apostle before ever he was baptised with the Spirit at Pentecost. How did Peter make that saving confession concerning Christ, without a revelation by the Spirit? Matt 16:15-17. He could not. Nobody can.
If you are not happy with Acts 2:38, would you like some more NT verses which show when a believer receives the Spirit?
Youth in Asia wrote: How does the new testament say believers get the Holy Spirit?
Acts 2:38 KJV (38)Â Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized [in water] every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Here you are Frank, the remainder of the quote most excellent.
Not many realise that we died in Adam, and we also died in Christ, before being raised to newness of life. It's all about federal headship.
"Christ having died for their sins, was laid in the grave, where he continued for a while, and then rose again; and as they were crucified with him, they were also buried with him, as their head and representative; and all their sins too, which he left behind him in the grave, signified by his grave clothes there; and baptism being performed by immersion, when the person baptized is covered with water, and as it were buried in it, is a very significant emblem of all this; it is a representation of the burial of Christ, and very fitly holds him forth to the view of faith in the state of the dead, in the grave, and points out the place where the Lord lay; and it is also a representation of our burial with him, as being dead to sin, to the law, and to the world, by him. This shows now, that baptism was performed by dipping, or covering the whole body in water, for no other form of administration of baptism, as sprinkling, or pouring water on the face, can represent a burial, or be called one;" Gill on Col 2:12
Frank wrote: Hey brother John UK! Baptism is a sacrament that simply publicly shows what has been done in your heart and soul. It cannot save in and of itself, but as you said just about everyone would say it is not optional in the obedience sense. There are some who become saved that donâ€™t have the opportunity to be baptized, but if opportunity is there it is mandated.
Amen brother! It is perfectly normal for a new convert to be baptised in water, despite the inconvenience of it, especially for multitude immersionists like John the Dipper (where 'dipper' is the correct translation of the greek word).
Of course, circumcision was even more inconvenient, not to say painful, but who are we mere mortals to argue with our Creator?
I agree with you, that baptism does not save. And I also agree with you that it does serve to show physically and pictorially that which has happened spiritually in a sinner's life, when he came to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.
JG on Colossians 2:12 says, "....but that they and all their sins were buried with Christ, of which their baptism in water was a lively representation."
J4, there is no point in having further convo on your heterodoxy concerning baptism. We have gone into it many times before, and you are still in 'error', are 'wrong', and hold an 'unbiblical' position. You are a classic case of heterodoxy and cannot prove your position from the Bible. Rather you simplify the work of the Holy Spirit in a sinner's life, when it is really quite complex, beginning as it does in eternity, when God the Father chose certain sinners unto salvation, working in their hearts in due time when they came into the world, involving conviction, regeneration, enlightenment, indwelling, sealing, assuring, delivering faith and other spiritual gifts, empowering, and on and on and on. Sure, this is the real deal, and God is exalted in this work of his Spirit; it is salvation which comes from him.
But so too is water baptism after conversion; it is 'biblical', 'correct', and 'right' to be baptised in water, in total identification with Christ's death, burial and resurrection.
Thanks for the various points you made. Time will always tell concerning these matters, but one thing we can expect for sure, is that in these last days, churches will fill up with tares, who will seek to introduce the godly to worldliness, by stealth and subterfuge, as well as slowly turn the gospel around so that it loses all its power. In other words, attempts will be made to kill the church from within. Once the church is dead, the tares will go elsewhere.
Thanks for mentioning heresy and error. In my Bible 'heresy' is only found once, and then, not in regard to any one doctrine. So I have decided not to use the word 'heresy' in future; rather it will be: 'unbiblical', 'wrong', or an 'error'. Then it will not confuse you or anyone else.
For example, I hold that Presbyterians - even if there are some that are true brethren - hold to certain 'errors' and are 'wrong' on certain things, as also are IFB's and Anglicans.
Someone told me once that there is no perfect church, but I have found that in every church I have attended, the prevailing attitude is, "We are 'fine', our doctrine is 'correct', our worship is 'good', preaching is 'fine', structure is 'fine', blah, blah, blah....."
Just to be clear, Presbyterians do not believe in baptismal regeneration, but they do baptise their own babies in anticipation of them becoming regenerate at a later date. It's a genealogy thing, and I call it heresy, because it is not biblical. In most households, there will be saved and lost people. Sometimes an entire household is saved, such as Cornelius, and as this jailer we talked about. Opposition to this teaching is opposing God himself, who is entirely sovereign in the matter of salvation. To deny this is like whistling in the dark.
This sovereignty is found in John 3:8 and throughout the Bible, and I will always exalt the Lord God in all that he does. After all, if anyone is ever saved, it is on account of God's grace, not the worthiness of the one saved. All are guilty, all are condemned, and if God chooses to save a few, he is to be commended for showing mercy upon them.
With regard to your hesitancy about this family, I will give you my current opinion concerning them, which is that I doubt a single one of them is regenerate; thusly they are perishing in sins and need the true gospel, not a watered down heavy metal version of it.
Would you have baptised all of them without sufficient evidence of new birth?
1. I actually wasnâ€™t focusing on that part of the text but rather the timing. Most baptist churches require more of a convert that an over night, believing in God. Phillipâ€™s convert was almost immediately baptized too.
2. Also, heresy of baptism has nothing to do with a false convert being baptized. That is literally impossible to prevent, though it should be guarded along with the Lords Supper. The only heresy known to me surrounding baptism is baptismal regeneration
Hi Marty and thanks for your response.
1. I am with you on this, because it is most biblical to baptise upon conversion or very shortly afterwards. To delay is to encourage disobedience.
2. I also agree with you on the plain fact that no matter how careful we are, there will be unregenerates baptised by us. Philip's convert made a profession of faith which satisfied the evangelist and he baptised him immediately. The key thing is that he made a profession of faith in Christ as the Son of God.
Regarding baptism heresies, did you not know that Presbyterians baptise their offspring almost as soon as they come forth into the world?
Marty McD wrote: ... This household baptism in Acts seemingly took place in the course of a few hours, by the Apostles no less ...
Good morning Marty,
It seems to me that you have developed a false doctrine because of your use of the ESV, and it concerns me. In your post, you appear to claim that because the jailer had become a believer, all the others in his household (wife, children, servants etc.) were eligible for baptism, even if they had not come to faith themselves. The ESV supports this, and it is where you got it from.
"Then he brought them up into his house and set food before them. And he rejoiced along with his entire household that he had believed in God." Acts 16:34 ESV
In this text, a theory is promoted that the jailer was the only one who had believed in God; therefore his entire household had been baptised on account of his faith. [obvious heresy]
I heartily commend to you the KJV, which I have posted below for comparison, which clearly shows that all present had become believers and were therefore eligible for baptism. [see Acts 8:36-38]
"And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house." Acts 16:34 KJV
The Quiet Christian wrote: John UK, .. I would think that since we don't know whom the Lord is calling to Himself, speaking to larger numbers has a greater potential to be within hearing of those whom He is calling.
When I "thought like a child" I too used to think like that. But not any more. I will exalt the Lord my God and his sovereignty and immense power, his providential workings and ability to bring to pass certain events, that his elect will get to hear the gospel in his time and in his way.
People like myself, who have sat at the feet of Charles Spurgeon, have learnt not to throw water at a crate full of bottles, hoping to get some water into each one, but rather to carefully pour the water into just one of the bottles until it is full.
There are people who have done hardly any evangelism who imagine themselves experts on the subject. Too bad.
Hey Ho, back to sleep in Zion, folks. You have had your chance to learn a few things, but you prefer the lie rather than the truth, so I will not stay here to be used as a punch bag, thank you very much.
I'll be back for the ChristMass debate, to see if anyone has woken up out of their spiritual RCC antichrist slumber.
"I don't see a biblical warrant for doing this. Why don't they just get on with doing what God told them to do, and face whatever consequences they have to face? As in, be a disciple of Jesus Christ, and follow him. Is that too simple?"
Do folks imagine it was easy to preach the gospel in Bible times, when Saul of Tarsus was on the march, rounding up Christians, beating them, forcing them to blaspheme, putting them in prison, or killing them?
Oh boy, now we have students who imagine themselves Christians oh-so-annoyed that they have been relegated to a corner of the park in order to preach their gospel, and what are they doing? They are taking the city to court. What sort of students are they? Rich kids with rich parents who have caught the modern stand-up-for-your-rights phenomena, who have learnt from the queers to take a case to court and get satisfaction? How much time and money and effort is all this going to take? Can they justify spending their parents' money on a court case? Wheaton College is observing but not interfering, they are on their own. And their studies? Who cares?
Am I the only person on SA who does not see Christianity in all this? That it is all of the flesh not the Spirit?
Frank wrote: Brother John, Thanks for your below comments and especially for the smiley face following your Arminist comment. I know you have preached often in public and commonly give out tracts in public to whomever will take them. That is not Arminian in the slightest but simply witnessing to all who will listen. The great commission. Like you, I believe in election. But I can't imagine walking up to someone and saying: "I'm not sure if you are one of God's elect, but in case you are, here is the gospel".
You got that on the button, Frank.
The Quiet Christian wrote: 1. Ah, just saw you latest, John. Why would approaching the larger group of people be Arminian? 2. Also, the concept of free speech zones goes against the right of free speech in a truly public place.
1. During ancient research, QC, I discovered that the BGEA could tell you before a crusade how many 'converts' they expected, based upon how many people were attending the crusade.
2. If you are right, the boys should win their court case easily, paving the way for a free-for-all "Speaker's Corner" at the Bean. If you are wrong, and they lose, they could always do what God tells them and face the consequences.
Just in case some folks didn't know this, the Millennium Park has a specific zone within the park where anyone can exercise their freedom of speech and either campaign for a political party, preach on climate change, bear Christian testimony, or whatever they want to do. It's like Speaker's Corner in Hyde Park, London.
The park is a tourist attraction, and many people attend what is called "The Bean", and so these students wanted to preach in this area (zone) simply because there were more people there. [Presumably they thought that their chances of getting conversions were better, because there were more people to witness to.] Oops, sorry, that is arminist thinking.
The truth is, that on the way to the park, in true evangelism, God, in his providence, could have arranged for a meetup with a prepared soul, whose heart was already hungry for the word of the gospel.
This is walking in the Spirit, not the flesh (which is DIY evangelism). It is depending on God totally, seeing HIM at work, being a part of what HE is doing, not doing it yourself and thinking yourself to be something or somebody, when you are nothing. God works with old clay pots, so that HE will have glory.