Bread of Life

BREAD OF LIFE
 this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. (john 6: 50)
The miracle of God’s physical presence to us at every Mass is the truest testament to Christ’s love for us and His desire for each of us to have a personal relationship with Him. Jesus Christ celebrated the first Mass with His disciples at the Last Supper, the night before He died. He commanded His disciples, “Do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19). The celebration of the Mass then became the main form of worship in the early Church, as a reenactment of the Last Supper, as Christ had commanded. Each and every Mass since commemorates Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross through the Holy Eucharist. Because the Mass “re-presents” (makes present) the sacrifice on Calvary, Catholics all around the world join together to be made present in Christ’s timeless sacrifice for our sins. There is something fascinating about continuing to celebrate the same Mass—instituted by Christ and practiced by the early Church—with the whole community of Catholics around the world…and in heaven.

THE REAL PRESENCE

Why does the Catholic Church believe Christ is really present in the Eucharist?
The Catholic doctrine of the Real Presence is the belief that Jesus Christ is literally, not symbolically, present in the Holy Eucharist—body, blood, soul and divinity. Catholics believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist because Jesus tells us this is true in the Bible:

“I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh." The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’ So Jesus said to them,

"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him” - John 6:48-56
Furthermore, the early Church Fathers either imply or directly state that the bread and wine offered in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper is really the body and blood of Jesus Christ. In other words, the doctrine of the Real Presence that Catholics believe today was believed by the earliest Christians 2,000 years ago!

This miracle of God’s physical presence to us at every Mass is the truest testament to Christ’s love for us and His desire for each of us to have a personal relationship with Him.

Friday, August 20, 2010

REFUTING CALVINISM ON PREDESTINATION AND ETERNAL SECURITY


by Fr. Abe P. Arganiosa, CRS

PREDESTINATION (“Prooridzo”): The providence of God disposing the supernatural means by which a man gets to heaven. [ Tour of the Summa, #23 ] Other terms for Predestination:

1 Peter 1: 1-2 “Elect”

1 Peter 1: 1 - 2 (King James Version) "1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied."

Matthew 22:14 “Called” / “Chosen”

Matthew 22: 14 (KJV)"For many are called, but few are chosen."
1. As long as a free creature has not attained his goal, he may perversely turn and fail to attain it.

a. Man in this life is a wayfarer; he is on the road; his journey is not finished.

b. Man by his own fault, may reject direction, and fail to reach his true goal.

c. Man must cooperate in the saving will of God if he is come to heaven.

2. Since his goal is Supernatural, man cannot reach it by natural powers alone. He needs Supernatural aid (GRACE) to attain it.

a. Supernatural Grace has been offered to man but he may refuse it (Human Freedom & Free Will) by committing grave sin.

b. The act of refusing heaven and choosing hell through Mortal Sin (1 John 5: 16 - 17) is called REPROBATION!

1 John 5: 16 - 17 (KJV) "16 If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it. 17 All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death."

3. God loves, chooses, elects, and predestines all who will accept and use His grace and reach heaven. GOD IS THE CAUSE OF THE WHOLE EFFECT OF PREDESTINATION, for all grace comes from Him to dispose a man for salvation (heaven) and support his effort to attain it.

Predestination is based on God’s Sovereign Choice alone! Not on man’s merit. [Saints' Augustine & Thomas Aquinas]

4. God wills that all may be saved but He also wills that human persons are Free to act as they will. [‘God does not will evil, nor does He compel virtue’ - St. John Chrysostom]

 There is nothing mechanical or fatalistic about predestination, nor does it conflict with the exercise of free will.

5. Only God knows the number and identity of those who will reach the heaven.

Romans 11: 33 - 34 "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?"

6. Here on earth we cannot know whether we shall be among the elect heaven.


7. But we can know that we shall go to heaven if we chose to do so, and use the Grace of God to make our choice effective.

2 Peter 1: 10 (NIV)"therefore, my brothers, be all more eager to make your calling and election sure. For IF YOU DO THESE THINGS, YOU WILL NEVER FALL."

Acts 4: 28 (RSV - CE) "All that happens is according to God’s predestination."

Romans 8: 28 - 30 "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose. For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His son, that He might be firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, them He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified." [Take note in order that Predestination, Divine Calling, Justification and Glorification to WORK TOGETHER the believer MUST LOVE GOD!]

1 Corinthians 2: 7 "But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory."

TWO KINDS OF PREDESTINATION:

1. PREDESTINATION TO GRACE (Ephesians 1: 4 - 5, 10 - 11): Predestined to come to God & become a TRUE CHRISTIAN. This is the entrance to the Christian life.

Ephesians 1: 4 - 5 (KJV) "4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,"

Ephesians 1: 10 - 11 (KJV) "10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: 11 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:"

2. PREDESTINATION TO GLORY (Romans 8: 28 - 30): A true Christian can be predestined to stay with God & persevere till death. This is entrance to heaven (Salvation and Eternal life).

Romans 8: 28 - 30 (KJV)
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


Are all predestined to grace? YES!

 Are all predestined to glory? NO!

 Are all Christians "Sure" of Eternal Life & Salvation? NO!

THE DOCTRINE ‘ONCE SAVED, ALWAYS SAVED’ IS NON BIBLICAL! The Bible clearly teaches that some true Christians or ‘Children of God’ or ‘Righteous Persons’ FALL AWAY & WILL BE LOST!

1. Some Angels fell from Grace

Lucifer & other angels fell from grace and were banished from Heaven (Isaiah 14: 12 - 15 / Luke 10: 18 / Revelation 12: 7 - 9)

Isaiah 14: 12 - 15 (KJV) 12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. 15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

Luke 10: 18 (KJV) "And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven."

Revelation 12: 7 - 9 (KJV) 7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

2. The Prophecy of Ezekiel categorically declare that the righteous can fall.

If the sinner turn to good he will be saved if a righteous man became evil he will not be saved. (Ezekiel 18: 24 - 32 / 33: 12 - 20)

Ezekiel 18: 24 - 32 (KJV) 24 But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die. 25 Yet ye say, The way of the LORD is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal? 26 When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. 27 Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. 28 Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. 29 Yet saith the house of Israel, The way of the LORD is not equal. O house of Israel, are not my ways equal? are not your ways unequal? 30 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. 31 Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye

Ezekiel 33: 12 - 20 (KJV) 12 Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth. 13 When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it. 14 Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right; 15 If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die. 16 None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live. 17 Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them, their way is not equal. 18 When the righteous turneth from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, he shall even die thereby. 19 But if the wicked turn from his wickedness, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall live thereby. 20 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. O ye house of Israel, I will judge you every one after his ways.

3. The First Parents lost their Innocence and were Sent Away from Paradise through Sin

Genesis 3 / Romans 5: 12 / 1 Corinthians 15: 22 Adam and Eve lost the state of grace.

2 Corinthians 11: 2 - 3 "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy; for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ, But, I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ." [See, St. Paul himself is not deceiving the early Christians with OSAS - Once Saved, Always Saved - He tells them that he is afraid of their salvation because they can be deceived by the Devil and might fall away from God.]

4. Christians could ‘Severe’ & ‘Fall’ from Christ

Romans 11: 22 "Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, IF thou CONTINUE in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be CUT OFF."

The Lord says that some believers can fall due to temptation (Luke 8: 13)

Luke 8: 13 (KJV) "They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away." The unfaithful steward was damned for failing to do his duties & responsibilities (Luke 12 :42 - 46)

Luke 12: 42 - 46 (KJV) 42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? 43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. 45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; 46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. [Salvation for the servant depends on his Fidelity and Wise Disposition of the Master's Gifts = Grace] St. Paul wrote that like Eve, believers can fail (2 Corinthians 11: 2 - 3).

2 Corinthians 11: 2 - 3 (KJV) 2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. (St. Paul is afraid lest the believers fall through temptation. He didn't deceive them with OSAS - Once Saved, Always Saved ).  Many disciples abandoned Jesus.  (John 6: 66 - 71).

John 6: 66 - 71 (KJV) 66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 67 Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? 68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. 69 And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. 70 Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? 71 He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve. Judas Iscariot became a traitor (Matthew 26: 14 - 16).

Matthew 26: 14 - 16 (KJV) 14 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, 15 And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. 16 And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.

5. The Children of God (Father’) can turn away

Luke 15: 11 - 32 The Parable of the Prodigal Son. The younger son abandoned his father; while the elder stayed but dead to sin as well. We as children of God can also fall away from Divine Grace & Salvation. The father loves the Prodigal Son so much but He waited for his return before he could be restored to His grace.

Romans 11: 20 - 25 "By their lack of faith & by ungodliness the Jews were cut from God’s grace."

1 Timothy 6: 10 "For love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." (Matthew 6: 24 God vs Mammon) [The heart of the believers can be corrupted by Money, Power and Prestige]

Hebrews 2: 1 (NIV) "We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away."

Hebrews 3: 12 "take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of un belief, in departing from living God." [See, even faith can disappear and be replaced by unbelief.]

6. The ‘Devil’ among the chosen

John 6: 70 - 71 "Jesus answered, have not I chosen you twelve, & one of you is a devil?" [He was referring to Judas Iscariot, the traitor]

John 17: 12 "Judas Iscariot chose to obey the temptation of Satan rather than the loving admonitions of the Lord Jesus."

1 Timothy 4: 1 "Now the spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, an doctrines of devils."

1 Timothy 1: 19 - 20 "St. Paul reminds St. Timothy to hold on to faith & good consciences in order not to suffer like Hymenaeus & Alexander whom Paul Delivered Already to Satan."

7. The Parable of Vine & the Branches

John 15: 1 - 10 "Jesus abides only on those who keep the Commandments. Every branch that does not bear fruit shall be taken away."

8. Even the Apostles could be disqualified from Salvation

1 Corinthians 9: 23 - 27 "This I do for the Gospel’s sake, that I might be a partaker thereof with you…lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I MYSELF SHOULD BE CAST AWAY."

9. Our Faith could be in vain

1 Corinthians 10: 12 "Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall."

1 Corinthians 15: 1 - 2 "Brethren I declare unto you the gospel which I preach unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand. By this gospel you are saved, IF you hold FIRMLY to the word I prieached to you. Otherwise, you have BELIEVED IN VAIN."

10. Forgiveness of Sin is ‘Conditional’

Matthew 12: 14 - 15 "if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if ye forgive not men their trespasses."

Matthew 18: 32 - 35 "Then his Lord, after that he had called him, and said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his Lord was wroth and delivered to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him."

Romans 8: 13 "If ye live after a flesh, ye shall he also reap, for he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the spirit shall of the spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, IF we faint not."

Colossians 1: 21 - 23 "And you, that were sometimes alienated, and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath He reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblamable and unreprovable in His sight. IF ye continue in the faith grounded and settled and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel."

Revelation 22: 19 (NIV) And if anyone takes word away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him the share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this holy book.

11. The good believer who abandoned the faith is very hard to be turned back to God.

Hebrews 6: 4 - 6 (NIV) "It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who tasted the goodness of the word of God and the power of the coming age, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting Him to public disgrace."

12. We must hold fast to The Profession of Faith.

Hebrews 10: 23 - 29 (NIV) "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess for he who promised is faithful. Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching. IF we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of three or two witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserved to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sacrificed him, and who has insulted the Spirit of Grace?"

2 Peter 2: 20 - 22 (NIV) "If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they are at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed unto them. Of them the proverb are true: “A dog return to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed goes back to her wallowing in the mud,”."

13. “Are you saved?” needs a threefold response, contrary to the claim of the Born Again that SALVATION IS A ONE - TIME EVENT… that it is something that had happened in the PAST ONLY AND IS IRREVERSIBLE is a mere product of their over presumption and self  - deception:

(1) SALVATION IN THE PAST: “I have been saved.” Jesus died for me. Through faith and baptism I have received forgiveness. I am a new creation, sharing the very nature of God.

Ephesians 2: 5 “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)”

Ephesians 2: 8 "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"

(2) SALVATION IN THE PRESENT: “I am being saved.” I look at the Lord daily for Grace to continue believing, loving and doing God’s will;

1 Peter 1: 8 - 9 (NIV) "8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls."

Philippians 2: 12 (NIV) "Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,"

(3) SALVATION IN THE FUTURE: “I hope to be saved.”  I must persevere until the end of my life. I firmly hope in His grace to enable me to do so.

Romans 13: 11 (NIV) “And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is NEARER now than when we first believed.”

1 Corinthians 3: 15 (NIV) “If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself WILL BE SAVED, but only as one escaping through the flames.”

1 Corinthians 5: 5 (NIV) “hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.”

Philippians 3: 10 - 14 "I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like Him in his death, and so, somehow to attain the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."

Galatians 5: 5 "For we through the spirit wait for the hope of righteous by faith."

14. Redemption also has a Past, Present and Future Dimension:

1. Redemption in the Past:

1 Corinthians 1: 30 “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:”

Ephesians 1: 7 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;”

Colossians 1: 13 - 14 “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:”

Hebrews 9: 12 “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”

2. Redemption in the Present:

Romans 3: 24 “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:”

3. Redemption in the Future:

Luke 21: 28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.”

Romans 8: 23 “And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.”

Ephesians 1: 14 “Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.”

Ephesians 4: 30 “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”

Hebrews 9: 15 “And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.”

15. Forgiveness of Sins also has a Past, Present and Future Dimension:

1. Forgiveness of Sin as having attained in the Past:

Ephesians 1: 7 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgivenss of sins, according to the riches of his grace”

Ephesians 4: 32 “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”

Colossians 1: 14 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins”

Colossians 3: 13 “Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.”

2. Forgiveness as On-going Process:

Matthew 6: 12 "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors."

Acts 26: 18 “To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.”

2 Timothy 1: 18 "The Lord grant unto him that he may find mercy of the Lord in that day: and in how many things he ministered unto me at Ephesus, thou knowest very well."

James 5: 15 "And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him."

1 John 1: 9 "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

16. Sanctification also has a Past, Present and Future Dimension:

1. Sanctification in the Past:

1 Corinthians 6: 11 "And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."

Hebrews 10: 10 "By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all."

2. Sanctification as On-Going Process:

1 Thessalonians 4: 1 - 3 "Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication"

1 Thessalonians 5: 23 "And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Hebrews 2: 11 "For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren"

Hebrews 10: 15 "Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before"

ALSO:

Romans 12: 2  (ESV) "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

2 Corinthians 4: 16 "For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day."

Ephesians 4: 21 - 23 "assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds"

17. Justification also has a Past, Present and Future Dimension:

1. Justification as a Past Event:

Romans 5: 1 - 2  "Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God."

Romans 5: 9 "Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God."

1 Corinthians 6: 11 "And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. "

2. Justification as On-Going Process:

Romans 2: 13 "For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified."

Romans 3: 20 "For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin."

Galatians 5: 5 "For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness (In Greek: Dikaiosune = Justification or Righteousness) by faith."

THE JUSTIFICATION OF ABRAHAM:

Jimmy Akin, the Apologetic Director of Catholic Answers, wrote in his bestselling book The Salvation Controversy:

One of the classic Old Testament texts on justification is Genesis 15: 6. This verse, which figures prominently in Paul’s discussion in Romans and Galatians, states that when God gave the promise to Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars of the sky (Genesis 15: 5, cf. Romans 4: 18 - 22), Abraham “believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness” (Romans 4: 3). This passage clearly teaches us that Abraham was justified as the time he believed the promise concerning the number of his descendants.

If justification is a once-and-for-all even rather than a process, that means that Abraham could not receive justification either before or after Genesis 15: 6. However, Scripture indicates that he did both.

1. The Book of Hebrews tells us that “by faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place which he was to receive as an inheritance, and he went out, not knowing where he was to go” (Hebrews 11: 8).

Every Protestant will passionately agree that the subject of Hebrews 11 is saving faith. Indeed, Hebrews 11: 1 - 2 tells us, “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the men of old received divine approval” (Hebrews 11: 1 - 2).

… Thus the faith we are told in verse 8 that Abraham had must be saving faith. But when did he have this faith?... The call of Abraham to leave Haran is recorded in Genesis 12: 1 - 4 three chapters before he is justified in 15: 6.

So Abraham was justified in Genesis 12: 1 - 4 and in Genesis 15: 6.

 That cannot be a one time event.

2. Much more, St. James reported that the same Patriarch Abraham received another justification afterward:

James 2: 21 - 23 "Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God."

We see, therefore that Abraham was Justified in Genesis 12: 1 - 4 when he left Haran to transfer to the Promise Land.

 Once again Abraham was justified in Genesis 15: 6 when he believed the promise concerning his descendants, and

 For the third time in Genesis 22 when he offered his promised son, Isaac, on the Altar.

THUS, JUSTIFICATION CANNOT BE A ONE TIME EVENT, BUT A PROCESS THAT CONTINUES THROUGHOUT THE BELIEVER’S LIFE.

5 comments:

Bob said...

I appreciate all of the scriptural references pertaining to this subject. Thanks.

Michael Gormley said...

Thanks for your feedback, Bob!

God bless you
Michael Gormley

Scooter said...

Michael, The catholic system is synergistic. What I'm reading in your comments removes the full glory from God and shares it with man. It also changes the meaning of predestination and election and it really has to because Roman Catholicism has always presented a man-centred religion. A major problem in this thinking is the use of scriptures out of context. I'm reminded of the phrase, "A text out of context becomes a pretext for a proof text." I'm afraid a number of your points fall within this problem. For example shouldn't it be explained that Matthew 22:14 is the last section of a parable? The full meaning of the parable needs to be exegeted to understand this portion of verse 14. There is nothing in this parable about "co-operating with God" or being on a journey. Rather its about whether or not a man is clothed with righteousness. Although everyone who hears the Gospel (that Jesus died as a propitiation to satisfy the demands of the law and for the forgiveness of sins and was raised again and receives this forgiveness through the finished work of Christ through faith)and has been invited, only those clothed with the righteousness of Christ are actually presentable to God.

I believe that there is also a misunderstanding with the concept of free will. Of course men have a certain amount of free will as there are many boundaries and limitations to this free will but no one operates on a morally neutral ground of free will. Everything we decide to do using our free will comes out of what motivates that will. In essence it is the desires of the heart that direct this will and in a moral sense we do not operate with a free will. The Bible is very clear that there is none that does good, We read this in Romans 3 and Old testament passages. Man naturally runs from God unless God turns him around or changes his heart.Man in fact is desperately wicked and hasn't changed since the days of Noah's flood. Now, for example, if you decide to respond to my comments it will come out of the desire and motivation of your heart and not simply on free will. Your will will always respond to your desires.

Michael Gormley said...

For example shouldn't it be explained that Matthew 22:14 is the last section of a parable?

Dear Schooner,
If it be asked why the name elect was given to the members of the Church Militant, we may assign a double reason: first, they were freely chosen by God's goodness (Romans 11:5-7, 28); secondly, they must show in their conduct that they are choice men (Ephesians 4:17).

In the sentence "many are called, but few are chosen", the latter expression renders a word in the Greek and Latin text which is elsewhere translated by elect (Matthew 20:16; 22:14).

It is agreed on all sides that the term refers to members of the Church Triumphant, but there is some doubt as to whether it refers to mere membership, or to a more exalted degree.

This distinction is important; if the word implies mere membership in the Church Triumphant, then the chosen ones, or those who will be saved, are few, and the non-members in the Church Triumphant are many; if the word denotes a special degree of glory, then few will attain this rank, and many will fail to do so, though many are called to it.

The sentence "many are called, but few chosen" does not, therefore, settle the question as to the relative number of the elect and the lost; theologians are divided on this point, and while Christ in the Gospels urges the importance of saving one's soul (Luke 13:23, 24), he alternately so strengthens our hope and excites our fear as not to leave us any solid ground for either presumption or despair.

Michael Gormley said...

Scooter said...
I'm reminded of the phrase, "A text out of context becomes a pretext for a proof text."

Dear Scooter,
Is Half of The Story Sufficient For Salvation?

How many sides are there to a story? If you say two, then you are wrong. If you had one side and I had one side, that would make two sides. However, there is a third side, the side of truth.

Rule # 1... One half of truth does not a truth make. Neither does one half of a story make the full story. No intelligent person can hear one side of a story and decide which side has the truth.

Both sides have to be heard, then analyzed, and then a decision has to be made as to which side (if either) has a valid story, and after that, the right side(s), or truth side, can be determined.

This thinking holds true for discerning what Holy Scripture tells us.

Throughout the Bible there are double standards, yet the fundamentalist thinking shows only one standard, or one side of the story, or only one half of the truth.

Their thinking is in violation of rule # 1. With only one half of truth, you do not have truth. Anything less than the whole truth is error.

In the following examples, side 'A' is the first side, side 'B' is the second, and side 'C' is the right, or truth side.

Example # 1... Sola Scriptura...? Only the Bible. Fundamentalist thinking is that the Bible is sufficient and nothing else is needed for salvation.

First of all, in order to believe in the 'Bible Only' philosophy, you have to show that Scripture says it. Is that not true? The doctrine of 'Sola Scriptura' is not to be found in Scripture.

A. Tradition is condemned in many places in Scripture, such as Job 22:15, Matthew 15:6, Mark 7:3-13, Galatians 1:14, Colossians 2:8, 1Timothy 1:4, Titus 1:14, and 1Peter 1:18. Look at these verses and grasp their meaning.

They all address 'vain' human traditions and are rightly condemned. This is one half of the truth.

B. Tradition is supported in more places in Scripture than it is condemned. Study Isaiah 59:21, Luke 1:2, 2:19,51, Luke 10:16, 2Thessalonians 2:14-15 - "Stand firm and hold the traditions you have learned..", 2Timothy 1:13,2:2, 1Peter 1:25, 1Jn 1:1,2:24, 2Jn 1:12, Revelation 12:17,19:10.

These are different traditions than mentioned in 'A'. These are the Traditions of GOD, or 'Apostolic' Tradition.' Again, this is only half of the truth.

C. The truth is, yes, we do condemn the vain tradition of men, as shown in 'A', and we must keep the Tradition of GOD, as shown in 'B'.

Thus we have half the truth in 'A', and the other half in 'B', and combined we have the full truth.

The false doctrine of Sola Scriptura adds A and B together and puts the total in A, rejecting all of tradition. A+B=C.

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