Monday, October 15, 2012

Bible Truth #414 - Revelation 21:5-6

Revelation 21:5-6
5  And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
6  And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

“I will give unto him that is athirst...” There are many passages in the Bible that are similar in nature to this phrase, and all make it sound as if Christ’s redemptive work on the cross is universal - or some would say “not only limited, but ALSO universal.” The problem is those who think this way have given fallen man an ability he does not have. The “thirsting” about which God is here referring is a spiritual thirst, not a physical thirst. Man, in his fallen state, is spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:1, 2:5; Colossians 2:13) and can not thirst for spiritual things. Nor can he hear or even see spiritual truth. Jesus said that a man can’t even see the kingdom of God unless he is born again (John 3:3). Just as a physically dead man will never be thirsty, neither will a spiritually dead man, a lost man, thirst for the water of life that only Jesus Christ provides.

The Arminian may keep saying or thinking, “That’s wrong, ‘him that is athirst’ means whoever thirsts.” Absolutely! The question is, “Who will be thirsty? Will every man be thirsty?” The emphasis is on the word “be” - as in who will be in that state? The answer - Only those whom God has quickened. And God quickens the dead spirit in a lost man based on nothing that man did (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5). God quickens only those He chose in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4).

I will still hear arguments from Arminians who say, “A lost man can choose to believe, he just has to have faith.

You’re right, he just has to have faith. The problem for the Arminian is the only faith that saves a man comes from God, and God does not give every man faith (2 Thessalonians 3:2). A lost man’s faith will not save him.

The only faith or belief that saves is the faith and belief that God gives a man (Romans 12:3; Ephesians 2:8, John 6:29; Philippians 1:29). And if God gives a man faith and belief, that man IS saved. A lost man has no saving faith on his own (2 Thessalonians 3:2) and if a man uses his own belief, that which is not from God, it is vain belief and will not save him (1 Corinthians 15:2).

The rejoinder I get from Arminians is then some like this: “Then why does God tell a man to repent when he can’t do it?God commanding all men to repent is not for the purpose of giving them the opportunity to be saved, but to show those who HAVE been saved the utter futility of the flesh (which is the only thing a lost man has) generating anything toward his own salvation. Jesus said the flesh counts for nothing (John 6:63).

Let me give you an example: you and a lost man are standing on the top of a 10-story building. God has miraculously given you the ability to fly (like Superman). You show the lost man your ability and tell him he can fly too if he will just have faith and believe he can do it. Sorry, it will not happen. He will either laugh at you and walk away (the normal reaction - John 3:20) or he will take that step and fall 120’ to the ground (those that believe in vain - 1 Corinthians 15:2). God just proved to YOU that without Him working in that lost man, he is NOT going to fly. What better way to prove to you, not to the lost man but YOU, what better way to prove to YOU that man can’t fly other than by us telling him to do it? THAT is one reason for God commanding all men everywhere to repent, NOT to give them an “opportunity” to be saved.

And since God determined the time and place for every man to live (Acts 17:26), did not God determine who would even hear the Gospel? How did the hundreds of millions who lived before Christ have an “opportunity” to be saved? Answer - they didn’t, they had no opportunity whatsoever to be saved. Obviously the vast majority of them were NOT chosen in Christ (for salvation) before the foundation of the world.

The bottom line of this Bible Truth is that a spiritually dead man will NOT thirst for something spiritual.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bible Truth #413 - Acts 16:30-31

Acts 16:30-31
30  ...Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
31  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

You may remember the story. Paul and Silas had been traveling and arrived in Philippi of Macedonia and caused some trouble by casting a demon out of a young woman. The problem? She was a slave and had been making her masters a great deal of money by fortune-telling. So Paul and Silas were beaten and thrown into prison. That night there was a great earthquake which loosed the shackles that had bound them and opened the doors of the prison. The jailer was going to commit suicide but Paul called out to him that all prisoners were still present. After the jailer called for light and came in to the prison cell, he fell before Paul and asked the above question.

The response of Paul and Silas is one that can be confusing to some who look at this verse alone without looking at it within the context of every other passage involving the regeneration of the dead spirit in man. It was Paul who wrote passages like 1 Corinthians 2:14 that tell us a lost man can NOT understand anything from the Holy Spirit and he rejects it (truth). Nowhere in the Bible will you find an exception. Nowhere will you find it written that a lost man will occasionally accept it. The places in Holy Scripture where the Arminian may point out a lost man accepting the free gift of salvation is, in fact, a saved man whose spirit has been quickened by God and he is now responding to the work God had already accomplished.

Paul penned the statement of fact in Romans 8:8 that a lost man can NOT please God. This means he can NOT “accept” Christ or repent of his sin, he can NOT please God. Would not a lost man repenting be pleasing to God? NO! If God were pleased then it would make His words in Romans 8:8 a lie! Again, there is no exception to the truth of God’s word.

Paul wrote to Titus and Timothy telling them that we are NOT saved because of anything we have done (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5) - and believing or repenting IS something we do. True belief and repentance are gifts from God and are done AFTER God quickens the dead spirit in a man. A man with a dead spirit repenting or believing is working from the flesh and Jesus said the flesh counts for nothing (John 6:63). To be saved a man must be called by God and God does NOT call everyone to salvation (1 Corinthians 1:26).

Paul is not the only one who spoke about this. Jesus said that we believe because God did a work in us (John 6:29). We didn’t choose to believe because we came to a realization of the Truth! We believed because God gave us belief! (Philippians 1:29) Once God gives a man belief, he believes, period. He is not given a choice whether to believe or not. God not only gives a man the ability to believe, i.e. enabling him (John 6:65), He gives him belief.

Jesus spoke words of truth when He told the Pharisees that they don’t believe because they are children of the Devil (John 8:44), not of God. Because these Pharisees were not chosen, they had no hope of becoming children of God (Ephesians 2:12, 1 Thessalonians 4:13). A man is either a child of God or not. You aren’t conceived a child of the devil and then once you’re saved you become a child of God. Because God’s Elect are chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4), we were ALWAYS children of God. Yes, we’re lost and dead in our sins until we come to the point in our lives when God quickens our spirit but we were always His, we were never children of the Devil. And how do we become children of God? We become children of God NOT by human decision. (John 1:13)

Paul was simply telling the Philippian jailer to believe, KNOWING that if he didn’t believe it’s because God had not done a work in him and if he did believe, God HAD done a work in him and had given him belief (John 6:29; Philippians 1:29). It is no different with us. When we witness to someone or if a man who is lost goes to church and hears the Gospel preached - if he doesn’t believe it’s because God has not done a work in him and given him belief. So if a man walks out of church still lost after hearing God’s Word preached it’s because that’s exactly what God wants. (Isaiah 55:11)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Bible Truth #412 - Acts 2:37

Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?

Pricked in their heart? Who pricked their heart? Did they prick their own heart? Or did God prick their heart? The answers are no, they did not prick their own heart, God is the one Who did it. And the only reason they were pricked in their heart is because God took out their heart of stone and gave them a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). Hearts of stone feel nothing. And the reason He gave them a heart of flesh is because they were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). God gives His people a heart to know Him (Jeremiah 24:7) and fear Him for their own good and for the good of their children (Jeremiah 32:39). He opens some hearts and doesn’t open others (Acts 16:14). God turns hearts to hate His people, whether they be children of Israel or Christians (Psalm 105:25). And He does all of this while making some men believe they have free will!

Were ALL pricked in their heart? Maybe all of those present had their heart pricked that particular day when Peter preached, but are all men pricked in the heart when they hear the message? Obviously not. Again, it is God who pricks the hearts of men with the Gospel and He doesn’t prick every man’s heart just as He doesn’t call every man to salvation (1 Corinthians 1:26). And those He calls, He also justifies and glorifies (Romans 8:29-30), they aren’t given a choice. As a matter of fact, not every man even has a chance to hear the Gospel as thousands die every day without hearing it - and many solely because of where they live. But it was God who determined when and where they would live (Acts 17:26) so whether we like it or not, God determines whether a man will hear the Gospel or not. However, the sad truth is that every one who dies without Jesus is going to Hell whether they had an opportunity to hear the Gospel or not.

But the point of this Bible Truth is that these men were pricked in their heart and only then did they realize they were sinners and that God was drawing them - and those the Father draws, Jesus WILL raise up, no ifs, ands, or buts (John 6:44).

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Bible Truth #411 - 1 Samuel 25:39

When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Blessed be the LORD, who has pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal and has kept back His servant from evil. The LORD has also returned the evildoing of Nabal on his own head.” Then David sent a proposal to Abigail, to take her as his wife.

David said that the LORD kept him from doing evil. Here is another example of the man wanting to do one thing but God stopping him and making him do another. Where is the free will here? This is no different from than the time God prevented King Abimelech from touching Sarah when he took her to be his wife after Abraham said she was his sister (Genesis 20:6).

Would you like an example from the New Testament? The same thing that happened with Paul when he intended to preach in Asia and Bithynia but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow him (Acts 16:6-7). Think about that - God prevented Paul from preaching the Gospel. How does that fit into the Arminian theory that God wants to save each and every single person?

If God does not want you to do something, you will not do it. If God does want you to accomplish a task, you will do it. God has a plan for each and every single person who was ever conceived, or who will be conceived, and there is no one who will not accomplish God’s will for their lives (Psalm 57:2, Psalm 138:8, Revelation 17:17).

To do anything, God may use you or He may use someone else, but because He has already declared the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10), what He wants done not only will be done because He works all things in accordance with the counsel of His Will (Ephesians 1:11), it has ALREADY been done.

So is it a surprise to anyone that God kept David from doing evil? David knew it and he didn’t have God’s Word in text like we have it today.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Bible Truth #410 - 2 Timothy 2:19

Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

The Lord knoweth them that are his. Wow. When you combine that with what the Lord told the workers of iniquity “I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:23) it is very clear there are those the Lord knows and those He doesn’t.

The Lord knoweth them that are his. It is NOT: those that know Him, or think they know Him. A man may claim to be a Christian, he may have prayed to accept Jesus, he may have walked the aisle, in Jesus’ Name he may have done many wonderful works, or preached and even cast out demons - but if he does not belong to Jesus, standing in front of the Great White Throne Judgment he will hear those dreadful words “I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” God hates the workers of iniquity - not the iniquity, but the workers thereof (Psalm 5:5).

The Lord knoweth them that are his. He knows only those the Father has given Him, and those the Father has given Him WILL come to Him (John 6:37). Who are those the Father has given Him? His Elect. Those who were chosen and placed in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). These are they for whom He shed His Blood and died. (Mark 14:24, Ephesians 5:25)

The Lord knoweth them that are his.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Bible Truth #409 - 1 Samuel 25:32-34

32  Then David said to Abigail, "Blessed be the LORD God of Israel, who sent you this day to meet me,
33  and blessed be your discernment, and blessed be you, who have kept me this day from bloodshed and from avenging myself by my own hand.
34  “Nevertheless, as the LORD God of Israel lives, who has restrained me from harming you, unless you had come quickly to meet me, surely there would not have been left to Nabal until the morning light as much as one male."

There will be some who say that Abigail made a decision of her own volition to approach David with gifts in an effort to appease his anger against her husband Nabal. David tells us otherwise in verse 32, God sent her to meet him. This is just another example of God directing the footsteps of men (and women) and working in people to will and to do according to His good pleasure (Psalm 37:23, 57:2, 138:8; Proverbs 3:5-6, 16:9, 19:21, 20:24, 21:1; Isaiah 14:2746:10; Jeremiah 10:23; Lamentations 2:17Philippians 2:13), He works ALL things after the counsel of His will (Ephesians 1:11).

David was so filled with wrath against Nabal that he had in mind to kill not only Nabal but every man in Nabal’s household. He had his plan and had set it into motion, but God intervened. He not only sent Abigail to David, God also restrained David from harming Abigail too - “...who has restrained me from harming you... God moved the king’s heart like He moves rivers of water (Proverbs 21:1).

God worked then as He does today. We do not become children of God by the will of the flesh (John 1:13).

Friday, September 14, 2012

Bible Truth #408 - Ezekiel 18:4

Ezekiel 18:4
Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.

This passage is simply another verse that supports the fact that everything and everybody is owned by God. He can do with the soul of any man what pleases Him. Here are a couple of supporting passages:

Psalm 24:1 tells us the earth is the LORD'S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. Everything belongs to the Lord and He can do what He wants with anyone and anything. This is the meaning of the word sovereign, and God IS sovereign. This is why His Word will NOT return void but WILL accomplish that which pleases Him (Isaiah 55:11). This is why He works out EVERYTHING after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11), and because He is in control, and because He orders our steps (Psalm 37:23, Proverbs 16:9), Paul tells us in Romans 8:28 that all things work together for good, NOT our good as too many want to believe. If that is what you believe read Romans 8:28 again or click on the hyperlink.

2 Peter 2:1 tells us that there are false prophets who deny the Sovereign Lord who bought them. Jesus did not buy salvation for them, He bought them. Since He bought them, can He not do whatever He wants with them? The fact is, the matter has already been determined. Christ is the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8) and anyone who would be saved in history had to be chosen and placed in Christ before the foundation of the world - and we were! There were some chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4) and there were those who weren’t - actually it is more like MANY who weren’t. This is the same thing that Paul tells us in Romans 9:20-21, the Potter can do with the clay as he sees fit, He owns it. If God wants to make a pot for dishonorable use, He can, and does - every day. For more thoughts on 2 Peter 2:1, click.

In the verse from Ezekiel above we learn that God owns the souls of every man AND the soul that sins will die. And by “die” one should understand He is referring to everlasting death in the Lake of Fire. Now who is the prophet talking about? Who is the soul that sins? If you know your Bible you know that ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).

So if the Arminian wants to believe that Jesus died for the sins of each and every person who ever lived, O.K., assuming that premise (which I believe God’s Word says is false - 1 John 2:1-2), just because Jesus died for the sins of every single person who ever lived does not mean that He purchased salvation for them, He purchased THEM, so He owns them and can do what He wants with them.

God is sovereign, every soul belongs to Him, and He can have mercy and compassion on whomever He pleases (Romans 9:15). We were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4) and redeemed because of nothing we do (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5). We are Christians, we are Elect, we are “the called ones” according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). We become children of God NOT by human decision (John 1:13).

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Bible Truth #407 - Psalm 145:18-20

18  The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.
19  He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.
20  The LORD preserveth all that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

The Lord is near to all who call upon Him.
I’m certain some will say that is another passage that proves lost men can, and are able to, call upon Jesus to be saved. We know there are no contradictions in the Bible so how does that understanding of the passage reconcile with passages like Romans 8:8 where Paul tells us that a lost man can not please God? Will the Arminian say that a lost man calling out to be saved is not pleasing to God? “Yes, of course a lost man calling out to God is pleasing to Him.” Well... If it is pleasing to God then a lost man can’t do it.

He is near to all who call upon Him in truth.
Jesus said He is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). How can any man who doesn’t know Jesus know truth? Jesus also said God is spirit and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24). A man with a dead spirit can do nothing in the spirit, nor does he have the truth. All he has is the lie of the flesh. Again, a lost man won’t call upon Him at all, much less call upon Him in truth.

He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him.
Do the lost fear God? I’m sure some do but only in the superstitious way that certainly does not result in salvation. Nothing a lost man can do results in salvation (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5). This fear is a reverential fear of God that is a result of God quickening the dead spirit in a man and saving his soul from eternal damnation.

He also will hear their cry,
God does not hear the cry of a lost man, he does not hear a the prayer of a sinner. God has hidden His face from those who are not made righteous through the Blood of the Lamb. His hand is not so short that it cannot save, nor His ear so dull that it cannot hear. But man’s iniquities have made a separation between him and God, and his sins have hidden God’s face from him so that God does not hear. (Isaiah 59:1-2)

How does the aforementioned understanding of the passage reconcile with John 3:20 where Jesus Himself said the lost hate him and will not come unto Him? There are many passages of Scripture that say the same thing, that tell us what a lost man can’t do, or won’t do. There are no exceptions to any of them. The lost man can’t understand anything from the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:14) and won’t call out to God because he is dead (Ephesians 2:1, 2:5; Colossians 2:13).

and will save them.
This is not “save” in the context of salvation for a number of reasons. First and foremost is the Biblical principle that is found throughout the Bible that the lost man is incapable and unwilling to call upon Someone he hates and Someone he does not understand. Second is the meaning of the Hebrew word from which “save” is translated. Yasha, Strong’s Concordance #H3467, does not mean to be saved from eternal damnation for if it did, it would contradict the rest of the Bible. Yasha means to be liberated or delivered, to be saved in battle - victorious, to be saved from moral troubles.

He preserves all that love Him
Of course, because all that love Him are those whom He has quickened, those whom He chose in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4), and those whom He foreknew and predestined to be saved (Romans 8:29-30).

but all the wicked will he destroy.
This also is not surprising since He hates the wicked (Psalm 11:5). He works out everything for His own ends - even the wicked for a day of disaster (Proverbs 16:4).

So YES! The Lord IS near to all that call upon Him in truth, and WILL fulfill the desire of them that fear Him, and WILL hear their cry and save them - but these are all things of which the lost sinner is incapable, or because of his nature, is unwilling to do.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Bible Truth #406 - Luke 6:46-49

46  And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
47  Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like:
48  He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.
49  But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.

I’m sure that most Christians are familiar with this parable, and have heard it called the parable of the wise and foolish builders. God’s Word tells us that wisdom comes from Him (Job 38:36, Proverbs 2:6) and that wisdom of a man is not wisdom at all, and will perish (Isaiah 29:14).

In verse 47 Jesus said, all those who come to me... Who will come to Him? It certainly won’t be a lost man because Jesus said in John 3:20 that those who do evil (lost men) hate the Light and will NOT come to it - and of course the Light is Jesus (John 8:12, John 9:5).

Jesus continues in the same verse, and heareth my sayings,... again, who will hear His sayings? Jesus told the Pharisees in John 8:43 that they do not understand what He is telling them because they CAN’T HEAR HIS WORD! Is He telling them they are deaf? No! He is referring to their spiritual ears. They can’t hear with their spiritual ears because the are spiritually DEAD, therefore spiritually deaf (Ephesians 2:1, 2:5; Colossians 2:13). So lost men not only won’t come to Jesus, neither can they “hear” Him.

He continues in verse 47 - and doeth them,... Do you think a lost man doing what Jesus said would please God? A lot of believers would say yes, of course. Please let me remind you what Paul told us in Romans 8:8 - they that are in the flesh (i.e. all lost men) can not please God! So there isn’t a lost man anywhere that will do what Jesus said. Only those whom God has quickened will even hear the spiritual truths Jesus spoke, and then act on them.

The question remains - whom will God quicken? The obvious answer is He will quicken only His children. Before you jump to the incorrect conclusion that everyone on the planet is a child of God, please read again Jesus’ confrontation with the Pharisees in John 8:42-47. Everyone is NOT a child of God.

The Gospel of John also records that we become children of God not by human decision (John 1:13). Two things:
- you can’t “become” a child of God unless you weren’t a child of God to begin with,
- we “become” a child of God not by human decision.

It is only these people, God’s children whom He has quickened, whom Jesus said was like a wise man who built an house by digging deep and laying the foundation upon a rock. Jesus is the rock (Romans 9:33; 1 Corinthians 10:4; 1 Peter 2:8) upon Whom one’s faith is properly set, and which will stand against any test. So the idea of God choosing to whom He gives wisdom perfectly reconciles with the idea of God’s sovereignty in Election in choosing those He placed in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4).

Just as wisdom comes from God for a select few, so too salvation comes from God for His chosen, a select few.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Bible Truth #405 - Acts 26:28-29

28  Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.
29  And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except these bonds.

Some have pointed out to me that the Bible has used the word “persuade” in our efforts to evangelize the lost. “Why would God want us to persuade anyone if they couldn’t be persuaded?

I see this question as someone grasping for straws in trying to prove man has the ability to come to Christ, the ability to believe, and the ability to repent - all in, and of themselves, and outside God’s working in them. Here are some examples of persuade being used:

Luke 16:31 - And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
Acts 18:4 - And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.
Acts 19:8 - And he went into the synagogue, and spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God.
Acts 28:23-29 - And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening. (Bible Truth #393)

None of these examples make the least bit of difference and none change God’s Word! As a matter of fact, it was Jesus Who said in the passage from Luke that men will not be persuaded even if one rose from the dead! As is always the case, Jesus is right - One HAS risen from the dead and are men persuaded? Not in the least.

I’m sure the man who believes in decisional salvation would disagree and say, “But men ARE persuaded. Many come to Jesus every day through persuasion.” Oh? So Jesus is wrong? Sorry, Jesus said men will NOT be persuaded. There is no room for an exception.

But regarding salvation, lost men aren’t persuaded, they’re convicted. God is simply using the efforts of those who proclaim the Gospel to quicken the dead spirits of some lost, giving them eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to understand. Then, and only then, can they be convicted by the Holy Spirit because the man without the Spirit, i.e. the lost man, understands nothing from the Holy Spirit. It is foolishness to him and he will not accept it (1 Corinthians 2:14).

The circumstances of our Gospel proclamation have no effect on the lost because nothing we do will quicken a man who is dead in his sins (Ephesians 2:1, 2:5; Colossians 2:13), nothing we do will cause a lost man to come unto the Light (John 3:20), and nothing we say or do will cause a lost man to please God and “accept” Christ (Romans 8:8).

No matter the method we use to proclaim the Gospel, God will quicken only those He chose in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). Only those God has appointed to eternal life will believe (Acts 13:48). Only those belonging to Jesus will believe (John 10:26) because only God’s children will even be able to listen to God’s Word (John 8:42-47).

Once again, we become children of God NOT by human decision (John 1:13).

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Bible Truth #404 - Romans 3:28

Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law.

Justified by faith... and where does a man get this faith, this saving faith? Answer - God gives each believer a measure of faith (Romans 12:3). This is why some get more than others. But why doesn’t He give EVERY man saving faith? Most Christians who believe in decisional salvation think God wants to save every man. So if man receives faith from God, why doesn’t He give every man saving faith? Arminians will say, “Because most men don’t want it.
Really? Unfortunately, NO lost man wants it, he wants nothing to do with God.

So why doesn’t God give every man saving faith? Answer - Because He doesn’t want to save every man!

Some may try to claim God wants every man to be saved by quoting 1 Timothy 2:4, 1 Timothy 4:10, or 2 Peter 3:9 but those passages can easily be explained without contradicting the rest of God’s Word (click on the links). However, I have yet to hear an explanation justifying their position from one who believes in decisional salvation for passages like 1 Corinthians 2:14 that tells us a lost man will accept nothing from the Holy Spirit and will consider it foolishness; Romans 8:8 that tells us a lost man can’t please God; John 10:25 where Jesus Himself tells us why a lost man does not believe; and John 3:20 where Jesus tells us the lost hate Him and will NOT come unto Him.

It should be obvious that the lost have no faith, especially since God told us not all men have faith (2 Thessalonians 3:2). Does a man come to Christ without faith and when God sees he is sincere He then gives him faith? That is absurd. Without faith no man is going to come to Christ. A lost man hates Christ and will not come to Him (John 3:20). Why, or better yet, how can he come to Someone he hates? Why would God give faith to someone He hates? Some will say, “God doesn’t hate anyone! He loves everyone!” God hates workers of iniquity (Psalm 5:5), the wicked and those who love violence (Psalm 11:5), abortion doctors (Proverbs 6:17), and liars (Proverbs 6:19). Any one of those passages by itself proves God does not love every person on the planet which means a lot of Christians believe an incorrect interpretation of John 3:16. See Bible Truth #66 for more info.

But, getting back to faith - does God give a lost man faith to enable him to come to Christ and then if he “rejects” Christ take that same faith away? If true, someone please show it to me in Scripture.

A man is justified by God-given faith alone and not because of anything he does (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5).

Friday, August 24, 2012

Bible Truth #403 - Judges 7:19-22

19  So Gideon, and the hundred men that were with him, came unto the outside of the camp in the beginning of the middle watch; and they had but newly set the watch: and they blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers that were in their hands.
20  And the three companies blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers, and held the lamps in their left hands, and the trumpets in their right hands to blow withal: and they cried, The sword of the LORD, and of Gideon.
21  And they stood every man in his place round about the camp: and all the host ran, and cried, and fled.
22  And the three hundred blew the trumpets, and the LORD set every man's sword against his fellow, even throughout all the host: and the host fled to Bethshittah in Zererath, and to the border of Abelmeholah, unto Tabbath.

And the Lord caused each man in the Midianite camp to turn his sword on each other. Here is another example of the Lord working ALL things after the counsel of His will (Ephesians 1:11). God made each of the Midianites want to kill each other. He worked in their minds to make them believe it was necessary to kill their fellow Midianites, or He worked in their minds to make them think they were striking at the followers of Gideon. Either way, God was at work!

Were they acting of their free will here? I’m sure if you could have stopped the carnage and asked one of these men if it was their decision to slay each other the answer would be yes! But did they truly have free will? NO! God was working in them to will and to do according to His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).

This is no different than the way God works in each of His Elect, those chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). At a point in time God chooses in the life of one of His Elect He quickens their dead spirit through faith, the faith that God gives them (Romans 12:3; Ephesians 2:8) as a gift. God simultaneously gives them belief (John 6:29; Philippians 1:29), repentance (2 Timothy 2:25), and understanding (Luke 24:45, 1 Corinthians 2:14, 2 Timothy 2:7).

God then draws them to Christ, and here’s the important part that is lost on most believers who think they “accepted Christ,” Jesus WILL raise them up. There is no if, there is no except, there is no maybe, there is absolutely no option for their so-called “free will.” Jesus said, “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:44) ALL those drawn, Jesus raises up.

The specific point to which I am referring that relates to this Bible Truth is when God works in a man and makes him believe (John 6:29). Just as God worked in the minds of the Midianites to make them slay each other and then flee, He works in the mind of one of His Elect and gives him belief, not the ability to believe (Philippians 1:29).

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bible Truth #402 - Psalm 41:9

Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.

This is prophesy regarding Judas and his betrayal of the Son of God unto the Jews for crucifixion and was quoted by Jesus in John 13:18. Many times in God’s Word He tells us that He has a plan for the lives of every human being who ever lived. No one will go through their lives not fulfilling God’s purpose for them (Psalm 57:2, Psalm 138:8, Revelation 17:17).

When this prophesy was made by the psalmist in history, God had already determined in eternity who it would be. When God created time, everything that was going to take place in history, has already occurred in eternity (Isaiah 46:10). Here in Psalms we see that Judas was as much an integral part of God’s purpose as was King Herod and Pontius Pilate (Acts 4:27-28). God had ordered the steps of ALL those involved (Proverbs 16:9, Proverbs 21:1).

God owns each and every human being who was ever born (Psalm 24:1, 2 Peter 2:1), and can have mercy and compassion upon whomever He wants (Romans 9:15). He has an expected end (Jeremiah 29:11) for each and every person because we were created for His pleasure (Revelation 4:11).

Free will? Sadly, no. God is working in each one of us to will (think, reason, believe) and to do (act, behave, live) according to HIS good pleasure, not ours (Philippians 2:13). So we not only do want He wants us to do (Proverbs 19:21, Proverbs 20:24, Ephesians 1:11), we think and believe according to His plan (John 6:29, Philippians 1:29).

Judas was God’s chosen vessel unto dishonor (Romans 9:21). His act of betrayal was God’s plan for him and God endured with much long-suffering the vessel of wrath (Judas), who was prepared and predestined for destruction (Proverbs 16:4, Romans 9:22).

We become children of God NOT by human decision (John 1:13).

Friday, August 17, 2012

Bible Truth #401 - Zechariah 12:1

Zechariah 12:1
The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, saith the LORD, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him.

God forms the spirit of man within him...

This is similar to the passage where the Psalmist writes that God forms the heart of every man (Psalm 33:15). God turns hearts as He sees fit to accomplish His purpose (Psalm 57:2, Proverbs 21:1). God is the one Who, for some, takes out their heart of stone and replaces it with a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). He gives His people a heart to know Him (Jeremiah 24:7) and fear Him for their own good and for the good of their children (Jeremiah 32:39). God opens some hearts and keeps other hearts closed (Acts 16:14). God turns hearts to hate His people, whether they be children of Israel or Christians (Psalm 105:25). And He does all of this while making some men believe they have free will!

Who we are in God’s sight had been set long before we were ever born, set by God. Our birth had been determined (Acts 17:26), our steps ordered (Proverbs 16:9), our works before ordained (Ephesians 2:10), our days written (Psalm 139:16), our end expected (Jeremiah 29:11), our souls purchased (Revelation 5:9), our eternity predestined (Romans 8:29-30), and our eternal life appointed (Acts 13:48).

We become children of God NOT by human decision (John 1:13).

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Bible Truth #400 - 1 Peter 5:10

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.

In 1 Peter 1:1-2 Peter makes it clear that he is not writing to all of humanity. He is writing to a specific group of people, the Elect of God.

He then writes in verse 10 above that God has called US unto His eternal glory. Because we know to whom Peter was writing, we can say with certainty that he is not referring to “us” in the context of humanity. However, undoubtedly there will be those who say that God has called, and will call, everybody to salvation at least once in their life.

The problem is that anyone who says this ignores passages that state rather clearly this is not true. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 1:26 that not many wise men are called, not many mighty men are called, nor many noble men are called. If God “called to salvation” every man then Paul would have written God has called each and every man (hekastos - Bible Truth #324) to salvation instead of giving examples of whom God did and did not call.

Paul also writes elsewhere those whom God calls [to salvation] He also justifies and glorifies (Romans 8:29-30). There is no option for man to accept or reject it. Within the golden chain of redemption there is a people God foreknew, His Elect. Those He foreknew, He predestined to be saved. Those He predestined, He called, justified, and glorified. It is already done, and it was done before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). Now some will say that we weren’t predestined to be saved but predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son. Please... does anyone actually believe there will be someone predestined to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ who ISN’T going to be saved? Are there any lost who have been conformed to the image of His Son, Jesus Christ?

The point is Paul isn’t the only one who writes about God calling US unto His eternal glory. Here Peter does as well.