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The Purpose(s) Of The Gospel


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#1 chipwag64

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 01:13 PM

I really enjoyed the discussion of "The Way of the Master" videos; and as I was reading some posts, this particular verse came to mind.
I was wondering which one of our Bible scholars :) could explain John 15:22.
I believe that the main purpose of the gospel is to bring people to salvation, but does this verse seem to indicate another purpose of the gospel?
Just wondering what others seem to think about this verse.
Obviously Jesus is not saying that people are not sinners until they hear about Him, so, what exactly is Jesus saying? was it just for people of the time it was spoken, or for all people at all times?

Chip

#2 the totton linnet

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 03:39 AM

I really enjoyed the discussion of "The Way of the Master" videos; and as I was reading some posts, this particular verse came to mind.
I was wondering which one of our Bible scholars  :P could explain John 15:22.
I believe that the main purpose of the gospel is to bring people to salvation, but does this verse seem to indicate another purpose of the gospel?
Just wondering what others seem to think about this verse.
Obviously Jesus is not saying that people are not sinners until they hear about Him, so, what exactly is Jesus saying? was it just for people of the time it was spoken, or for all people at all times?

Chip

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*
Hi Chip Wowie this is a goodun.
I suppose anyone who studies the bible with a real desire to come to grips with it may be called a scholar, though some of us are only in infant school yet :P
First to sweeten my tail a little [something I haves to do a lot :) ] with regard to "The way of the Master" I shared privately with Adam777 in the beginning that the one thing I did think was positive about it was their presentation of the cross, that is the message that saves. I see Mr. Comfort is in trouble with some people, he was spotted fellowshipping with some wretched charismatics, tut tut, that will not do!
John.c.15v22-24
If I had not come and spoken unto them they had not sin but now they have no cloke for their sin
He that hateth Me hateth My Father also.
If I had not done among them the works which none other man did they had not had sin but have they both seen and hated both Me and My Father.
Just who DID hate Jesus and hounded Him everywhere He went, it staggers me to think that the greater the act of mercy the more they hated Him for it, St. Mark is a peculiar gospel, John Mark may not have been an eyewitness [some identify him as the young man who ran away naked when Jesus was arrested] but he was Peter's nephew and there is every reason to think his gospel is the memoirs of Peter. His Gospel describes Jesus, when He healed the man with the withered hand it says "And when He had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts." and they went out and took council how they might destroy Him. After one great miracle they came and asked "show us a sign."
Who hounded and persecuted the disciples? who followed Paul around? it was the religious people and the political leaders. These and only these as far as I can see are the only ones He threatens [in direct confrontation] with hell-fire and even then He says "that ye may be saved." All the hate was on their part.
Since throughout history it is the same groups that oppose God when He moves in power even today I suppose the same word applies today to the same people.
I think "the world" in this context means the world system.
The purpose of Jesu's coming was to save but in the very act of saving the hearts of His enemies are exposed. God's word is a two edged sword.

#3 Adam Nagy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 06:34 AM

I see Mr. Comfort is in trouble with some people, he was spotted fellowshipping with some wretched charismatics, tut tut, that will not do!

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Oh no! They got pictures of us? I was even wearing a disguise...

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Joking aside, was this really something that became an issue or are you just joking? While there is a large segment of the church that frowns on us pentecostal/charismatic types, I've personally found a great deal of acceptance among believers that are more dispensational/conservative. Do you have a link to this nay-saying and who did it?

#4 Adam Nagy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 06:56 AM

I found this guy railing against Ray because of what he said regarding Charismatics:

http://www.atruechur...raycomfort.html

His ecumenism is further revealed in his statement,

    "When people call and ask where I stand on the charismatic issue, prophecy, predestination, etc., I tell them that I don't have an opinion because I don't want to divide the Body of Christ." (www.livingwaters.com/helps/faq.shtml#9, hard copies of all documentation)

In other words, he won't take a stand on controversial Biblical issues. He does not love the truth. He does not love Christ (John 14:6). He does not hate every false way (Psalm 119:104, 128). He does not contend for the faith (Jude 3). He does not live out 2 Corinthians 10:3-5. Yet, he is a spiritual leader.



#5 Adam Nagy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 07:02 AM

The link offered above wasn't quite right but I found Ray's statement in full context:

http://www.livingwat...ps/faq.shtml#14

14. Do you believe in "Once saved always saved?"

When people call and ask where I stand on the charismatic issue, prophecy, predestination, etc., I tell them that I don't have an opinion because I don't want to divide the Body of Christ. However, let me share where I stand on one issue that I think Christians may be able to come closer together on--the issue of "Once saved always saved."

Someone asked my opinion on a book on the subject, written by a very respected man of God. After reading the book, one thing I noticed, was there was a very evident silence on the subject of true and false conversion. This was despite the fact that it is incredibly relevant to the topic dealt with in the book. The New Testament deals with this in great depth. It tells of Judas' profession of faith (he was in truth a thief, and was referred to by Jesus as a "devil"), to the parables of Jesus about the true and false "believers" sitting alongside one another. It speaks of Demas, who forsook Paul because he "loved this present world." As such, he revealed himself to be an enemy of God--"Whoever is a friend of the world is an enemy of God.".

In one case, the author referred to a pastor/friend who was found to be "romantically" involved with another woman. The pastor had made his mind up to divorce his wife and marry the woman. I presume he means that he had been committing adultery. Instead of challenging the man as to the validity of his faith, and therefore warning him that "adulterers will not inherit the kingdom of God," he spoke of the man's "loss of rewards."

I do believe in eternal security for a true convert. He puts his hand to the plow and doesn't look back, because he is "fit" for the kingdom (Luke 9:62).

Those who are fit for the Kingdom are not hypocrites as was Judas. The true convert is eternally secure in his faith, because his faith in Jesus is genuine rather than false.

However, if a man steals, lies, kills, rapes, hates, lusts, covets, commits adultery, etc., and calls himself a Christian, he would be very wise to examine himself and see if he is "in the faith." The Bible makes it very clear that hypocrites will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.

If a man has no understanding of true and false conversion (in his ignorance), he may make a calculated decision to forsake a few future eternal rewards and trade them for the immediate and temporary pleasures of sin. His confidence is in an interpretation of scripture that may have eternally tragic repercussions.

I think that teaching on true and false conversion would clear the air when it comes to the contentions between two opinions that so often divide the Church. It would bring closer together those who say you can lose your salvation at the drop of a sinful hat, and others who think that Christians can get away with murder and still be assured that they are saved, because they once professed faith in the Savior.



#6 Adam Nagy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 07:08 AM

To address the OP, I want to give an example of what a guy I used to work with said to me. His wife was saved and he was not. He told me with a smirk on his face that he was angry at the church because now that he knew the Gospel and the full council of God he was liable for receiving or not receiving Jesus because he had the knowledge. My friend presumed that if he hadn't heard the message it would have given him a free ride into heaven.

Just on aside, I don't think his perspective is right but it could serve as a springboard here...

#7 the totton linnet

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 10:50 AM

:P Of course I was being impish, but Ray got rather a stern telling off [apparently] for taking part in a conference alongside certain known WOF "heretics" he has promised to be a good boy in future, given the growing divide between WOF and reformed evangelicals I can understand how they would be dismayed. I have always felt that it is just the reformed grace doctrines [I can't say Calvinist per se] that the WOF and charismatics need, often, being in admiration as they are of Spurgeon, they accept and believe the truths but do not follow through with their practices. If the reformed mob were not so stupified into exclusiveness and castigation of everyone who disagrees with them their imput to the charismatics would be priceless, they have the doctrines, they need a little more love.
I think the site is called discernment ministries, although they seem not to be able to discern the difference between Todd Bentley and certain other pentecostal ministries which have quite a long and distinguished track records. But I was playing, if I really wanted to be mischievious I would have quoted "Damnable heresies" with whom Ray Comfort has also fallen foul of :) They are really on the nutty fringe. Oh dear.
Back to John 15. I think the whole talk really revolves around "you did not choose Me, but I have chosen you" I do believe when God wants He makes Himself utterly irresistable to the point of salvation at least, whether His purposes for our lives can be thawrted once we are saved is another thing, "If ye abide in Me" and this has to do with bearing fruit.
I really prayed about election, why did God love Jacob but Essau He hated? Any dads out there? suppose you are at the beginning of planning for children...right? and suppose you know with fore-knowledge the first son will be wicked but you were able to know that the second would be the perfect son and would achieve lasting good to countless millions...would you still go ahead and start a family? or would you for the sake of the wicked forebear to have children? Now if you wanted to go a step further you might say "well yes but this first is my son too, in-as-much as I have brought him into the world, I am responsible for him and for the wickedness he does, I desire to have mercy, what shall I do?"
I will consign BOTH to disobedience, that's what, in that way I shall be able to show mercy to both.
Paul in Romans speaking about Isreal's present disobedience says in ch:11v29-33 For the gifts and call are without repentance for as ye in times past have not believed God yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief. Even so have these now have not believed, that through your mercy [that is the mercy we have obtained-as I understand it] they also may obtain mercy. For God hath concluded all in unbelief that He may have mercy upon all.
Oh the depths of the riches both of wisdom and knowledge of God how unsearchable are His judgements, and His ways are past finding out.
I am not arguing for universal salvation here mind.
*
PS I have a distinct feeling that if you were to really dig deep enough into Ray's testimony, which he is a little coy about, you might find that his roots are very different to what he now espouses, that is not neccesarily bad, but I have noticed a GREAT number of christians enter into the kingdom through the charismatics and then gravitate towards the far right, if they get grounded in the doctrines that is good, but for heavens sake I wish they would leave the sniffiness alone. Your other sweetheart Mark Driscoll seems to have struck a very good balance in this matter. :P

#8 Adam Nagy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 03:52 PM

Before we get carried away, there are over-zealous people on both sides. I've seen many a WOF leader cut down our loving dispensational brothers and sisters with a lack of understanding. We all have feet of clay and those of us that know better are to be bridge builders and compassionate.

We all need to grow in love.

#9 the totton linnet

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 03:15 AM

Going back to John 15:22
If I had not come and spoken to them they would not have sin. How does this line up with Pauls speech to the Athenians 17:30 The times of ignorance God overlooked but now He commands all men everywhere to repent. Or Romans 5:13 Sin indeed was in the world before the law was given but sin is not counted where there is no law. Verse 14 is intriguing Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses even over those whose sins were not like the transgression of Adam who was a type of the One to come.
So Paul makes a definite distinction here between the original sin which because of federal headship brought us all under the dominion of death and actual sins commited which he says [without the law] were not counted.
I think these scriptures need to be looked at closely in relation to the idea that people who never have heard or had the opportunity to hear the gospel are damned automatically.
That by no means excuses wicked behaviour.

#10 chipwag64

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 03:32 PM

I believe that this discourse in the latter chapters of John were around the time of the last supper starting at chapter 13 on through to 17.
Sounds like a final confirmation of God's love and Jesus' love for the chosen disciples as well as the command to continue in that love, the unity between the Father and Son, the warnings about the opposition, the promise of the paraclete Holy Spirit, a clear distinction between God's Kingdom and this earthly kingdom and so much more packed in these chapters.
As we come to chapter 15 verse 18, there is a focus on the world of unbelievers.This is where I truly believe there is a grave misunderstanding, at least in the area that I live in.
Too many people want to make the separation between this world and God's Kingdom just a slight difference, as if there is not much of a gulf at all between them.

Oh, how often we see in the scriptures the contrasts between love and hate, light and darkness, righteousness and lawlessness etc.; but many people that I speak to really don't see much of a difference, and hence, there is no urgency nor fear to FLEE from unrighteousness.
There is no neutrality in humanity, we are born as haters of God, that is clear in the scriptures.
Now, concerning John 15:22, I believe the "they" Jesus speaks of is "the world" going back to verse 18.

As Totton said, I agree, that Jesus knows our hearts; I believe that this verse is about "religiosity" of the Pharisaical, hypocritical type.
I think that the "cloak" is an external showing of piety and reverence while the heart inside is filled with hatred.
How many people these days are soooo comfortable with "religion", just "doing church"; that is, until someone with a deeper and more fulfilling walk with the Lord comes by and makes them look weak.
Jesus came and lived and spoke of a higher standard and exposed many people's hearts; (Luke 18) putting an end to the "comfortable religion" of many and making them uncomfortable.

#11 chipwag64

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 04:29 PM

I had to leave quickly and posted without ending the way I would like.

It really grieves me to hear of this current worldview, where it seems as if everything is basically the same with little variation.
All religions, we are told, are basically the same; the accused of a crime deserves as many rights as the victim; all life as we know it comes from one source, it all just evolved etc.
Even within the church these days, the priority of the comfort of the "attendees" exceeds the priority of the convicting truth of God's word. The Bible is just a book written by falliable men, let us look at the world, how it is operating, and let us conform to it, rather than the other way around.
Everywhere I look I hear the same message and a serious lack of understanding of major differences in this world.
It is no wonder then, the apathy that comes from such a view.

#12 the totton linnet

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 04:14 AM

May I ask respectfully and in all kindness Chip, did you flee unrighteousness? or did you come to the Lord in neediness? I am not doubting that sin IS the prolem.
Not everyone hates God, Cornelious didn't, the Eunuch who Philip witnessed to didn't, I didn't. I must have to confess that it grieves me a little, I know it's making people fed up, but people come to the Lord in distress and need of help, they DO have to learn that sin is the enemy that has brought the problems into their lives, but their coming to Him is because they are needy, [in almost every testimony I hear, and I love testimonies and read a lot of them] Jesus, as in the woman at the well presents Himself as what they are seeking. THAT is how people are saved. But as soon as they set out to win others, and I KNOW they set out in love for souls and a genuine desire to do good to the sons of men,
but somehow they learn that FIRST people must be confronted with their sin. It's this very THING that I am protesting against, I say and the scripture I think supports me in a million of cases, First present Jesus the answer, the good news, He IS the good news, a Saviour that meets man's greatest needs. THEN you can show them the way.
*
O give thanks unto the Lord for He is good
for His steadfast love endures forever
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,
whom He has redeemed from trouble.
Psalm 107
I'm very sorry to be tiresome to my brothers and sisters in this matter-what if the Holy Spirit is grieved??

#13 the totton linnet

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 04:17 AM

Before we get carried away, there are over-zealous people on both sides. I've seen many a WOF leader cut down our loving dispensational brothers and sisters with a lack of understanding. We all have feet of clay and those of us that know better are to be bridge builders and compassionate.

We all need to grow in love.

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Yay THERE he is! :) the man from PA

#14 Adam Nagy

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 05:19 AM

Yay THERE he is! :) the man from PA

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:)

#15 Ron

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 03:16 PM

Yay THERE he is! :) the man from PA

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:)

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:lol:














































:lol:

#16 Adam Nagy

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 05:51 PM

:lol: ;)








...alright, let's get this back on topic. :)

#17 Ron

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 05:54 PM

:lol:  :)
...alright, let's get this back on topic. :D

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Posted Image












Sorry ;)





Now what about Ray Comfort?

#18 Adam Nagy

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 06:07 PM

Now what about Ray Comfort?

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Ikester is going to have my head soon if we don't rein this in. :lol: ;)

Ron, I am curious what your thoughts are on this? What would you say to the hell-fire-and-brimstone preacher who thinks that every mega church is a sham. What do you say to the easy pleasy sheep feeder who is so nice that they'll allow their hands to get bit off while they're feeding the wolves in the sheep pen.

I think these are the two camps that are both in error and many Christians in proper balance get the cross fire. Rob Bell (who's on the easy pleasy side and who has some useful material) does a section of his series devoted to denouncing a person like Ray Comfort by depicting a straw version of him...

This is a small clip from it:

eau07xkFG2c

I've used some of his material and I don't go as far as many do to call him a heretic but he's screwed up on some issues. The emergent church has several doctrinal problems with it but I believe there are believers in their ranks.

How do we deal with these issues?

#19 Ron

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Posted 09 June 2009 - 02:58 AM

Ikester is going to have my head soon if we don't rein this in. :lol:  ;)

Ron, I am curious what your thoughts are on this? What would you say to the hell-fire-and-brimstone preacher who thinks that every mega church is a sham. What do you say to the easy pleasy sheep feeder who is so nice that they'll allow their hands to get bit off while they're feeding the wolves in the sheep pen.

I think these are the two camps that are both in error and many Christians in proper balance get the cross fire. Rob Bell (who's on the easy pleasy side and who has some useful material) does a section of his series devoted to denouncing a person like Ray Comfort by depicting a straw version of him...

This is a small clip from it:

eau07xkFG2c

I've used some of his material and I don't go as far as many do to call him a heretic but he's screwed up on some issues. The emergent church has several doctrinal problems with it but I believe there are believers in their ranks.

How do we deal with these issues?

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I know John the Baptist didn’t have a Bull Horn, but ask your self this: What was his message for that day? Also, is there a need for that message today? If not, why? If so, why?

I have found, in my walk with the Lord, that the Lord calls different people to differing ministries, in different places, with different talents. The only question I have is this… Is their theology correct? Is if is, that’s cool. If it isn’t, it IS my responsibility (as a Christian) to talk to them (in private) about the correction(s). If they don’t accept it, I cannot make them accept it, and only the Lord can deal with them. If they are a member of the church I attend, there are additional steps I can take to help them. But, ultimately, only the Lord can show US where WE error.

I’ve enjoyed every thing I’ve seen and read of the message Ray Comfort has said and done. But, I’ve not seen or heard it all. But what I have heard is theologically sound.

#20 Adam Nagy

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Posted 09 June 2009 - 07:27 AM

What about the theology of Rob Bell and the emergent church?




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