Key Quotes on the Sufficiency of Grace (Week 1 - Jan 2014)

Some believe grace is not really a gift but gives man an opportunity to believe or not, but this scenario is about as likely as believing that shining a light into the eyes of a blind man will enable him to see if he wants to. If the blind is not given new eyes, he will not see. And once he is given new eyes he already sees. Grace is grace because Jesus gives to us what we were unable to give to ourselves: eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to believe. (Deut 29:4; 30:6)


Some teach that 'salvation depends on human will', but the Bible teaches (and I quote) 'it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy." (Rom 9:16)

We cannot believe in just any "Jesus", and think that because we are using this word, that we are, therefore, honoring God. The Jesus of the Bible is one who saves by grace ALONE, not the false or inconsistent Jesus' proclaimed by many who want to partly retain the merit, wisdom or humility of man. It is only when man is stripped of all hope in himself and, by grace, turns to Jesus alone that he understands the gospel. Do you trust in Jesus alone? If you do then know this, Jesus provides EVERYTHING we need for salvation, including the Holy Spirit to believe (John 6:63, 65), the wisdom and sound judgment to believe (1 Cor 1:30) and a new heart to believe (Ezek 36:26). Jesus is sufficient.


"But to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to understand or eyes to see or ears to hear." - Deut 29:4.

Sun, 01/05/2014 - 21:51 -- john_hendryx

Discovering the Master Keys to the Great End Time Debate

by Dean Davis

The following are some excerpts from The High King of Heaven: Discovering the Master Keys to the Great End Time Debate - A book which makes a defense of amillennial eschatology.

Dr. Sam Storms recent endorsement is as follows" "The High King of Heaven, by Dean Davis, is the most sweeping and comprehensive book on eschatology that I've ever encountered. The scope of this book is simply breathtaking. As is typical with all books on eschatology, no one will agree with everything he says. But everyone should wrestle vigorously and thoughtfully with his approach to reading prophetic texts. This isn't for bedside, late-night reading. In fact, it will probably keep you up at night!"

Sun, 01/05/2014 - 17:31 -- john_hendryx

Proper Interpretation of Old Testament Kingdom Prophecy (OTKP)

by Dean Davis

This is a series of posts dealing with the proper interpretation of Old Testament Kingdom Prophecy (OTKP). The goal in these eschatological adventures is two-fold. Davis is the author of The High King of Heaven: Discovering the Master Keys to the Great End Time Debate - A book which makes a defense of amillennial eschatology.

First, to open up something of the Christ-centered truth and beauty of OTKP to my brothers and sisters in the Lord.

Secondly, to reason a little with my premillennial brethren. In particular, I want to make the case that we all will best understand, enjoy, and profit from OTKP when we see that its true sphere of fulfillment is: 1) Christ, 2) the New Covenant he instituted by his blood, 3) the two-staged spiritual Kingdom he has already introduced (and will soon consummate), and, 4) the New Covenant community he is creating out of elect Jews and Gentiles: the Church.

In short, I would like my premillennial brothers to reconsider the amillennial approach to the interpretation of OTKP.

Sun, 01/05/2014 - 17:20 -- john_hendryx

The Shepherd Sets the Sheep Free

If the natural man has a free will to believe the gospel, then why does he need grace at all? If his will is naturally free then it would do away with the need for grace altogether ... he could simply come to Jesus Christ on his own, apart from grace. But the Bible teaches that it is precisely because man is in bondage to sin (2 Tim. 2:26; 1 Cor 2:14) that he needs Christ to set him free (John 8:34, 36) that he might indeed come to faith in Jesus (John 6:63, 65).

But lest anyone think the above is an attack on Arminianism, they would assume too much. It is meant to demonstrate the biblical truth that the natural man (the man without the Spirit) does not have a free will -- a slave to sin and corruption, something both Calvinists and Arminians agree upon. This statement is more directed toward the many semi-pelagian Christians out there who even deny the need for an Arminian-type prevenient grace - they actually exist in America in much greater numbers than Classic Arminians and thus the urgency to proclaim this message. I once had a discussion with Roger Olson (a Classic Arminian) a professor at Baylor who said he had many students who thought he was a closet Calvinist because of his belief in prevenient grace. So I propose that we stop debating about whether man has a free will or not.  He doesn't and that has been established by the above.  The debate is really more about what the Bible has to say about the nature and extent of God's regenerating/saving grace.

As much as they think it gets them off the hook, Arminnian prevenient grace really does not help Arminians escape this issue of free will and the ability of the natural man. Prevenient grace hides behind a mask in order to avoid the questions that dig a little deeper. For starters, prevenient grace elicits two major questions:

Sat, 01/04/2014 - 17:15 -- john_hendryx

Why don't you still put to death people who break God's law like in OT Israel?

Visitor: Why don't you still put to death people who break God's law like in OT Israel? Wouldn't you establish a theocracy and take over the state mechanism if you had the opportunity?

Response: Multi-tiered answer.

1) the death penalty still stands for the same sins committed, but with the coming of Christ there is now a delay in carrying out judgment as He holds out pardon in advance of His invasion for those who ally themselves with Him. When he bore the sin of many on the cross He died the death we all deserved. He paid for the sins of the Christians now living...and for those sheep he still intends to gather. So now is a time of mercy, today is the day of salvation ... but when Christ comes again such offers of clemency will cease forever .. and then their death sentence will be carried out.

2) As Christ grafted in the Gentiles into His olive tree (Rom 11), we no longer live under a direct theocracy but are cast and dispersed all over the world, called to live as pilgrims and exiles like Israel in the Babylonian captivity. In whatever country we live we are called to seek the welfare of the city where the Lord sends us, pray on its behalf (Jeremiah 29: 4-7) and obey the laws of the governing authority (Roman 13:1-7).

Sat, 01/04/2014 - 09:58 -- john_hendryx

Helpful Links from Around the Web (New Years' 2014 Edition)

What is Regeneration? (.pdf) By Gary Brady
Gary Brady is pastor of Child's Hill Baptist Church, London. He has written extensively on regeneration. He states early on, 'When it comes to theology and the new birth in particular, we should delve into the subject as deeply as we can. However, in the end, we must recognise that it will defy us'.  Nevertheless he elucidates many points that help to open up our understanding.  

Great Biblical Doctrines (55 - Part MP3 Lecture Series)
by Martyn Lloyd-Jones
A collection of 55 of the lectures from the Friday evening meetings held at Westminster Chapel. Unfortunately, this collection is incomplete due to quality problems with the original tapes and the fact that some tapes were missing. The full series in the book includes 81 lectures.

Wed, 01/01/2014 - 13:11 -- john_hendryx

Resisting the Holy Spirit

An argument frequently made against the biblical doctrine of irresistible grace is an appeal to Acts 7:51 which declares “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you."

It should be noted, however, that the very text here cited by some to demonstrate that grace is resistible contains the very language that makes a decisive argument against their own position. Indeed these persons Stephen is directing the comments toward are resisting the Holy Spirit, but look closely... the Text declares that their heart and ears are "uncircumcised". In the Old Testament this is commonly used language used for regeneration (See Deut 29:4, 30:6 & Ezek 36:26) so being unregenerate, to resist every outward working of the Spirit, is simply acting in accordance with their natures.

People always resist the outward call of the gospel.. ALWAYS, until God chooses to open their eyes, ears and heart to the gospel. That is called circumcision of heart, the new birth or regeneration. The work of the Holy Spirit is manifold, regeneration being only one aspect of redemption ... The Bible declares that He may convict the unregenerate of certain sin and do many things short of regenerating grace. Anything short of regeneration CAN and WILL BE be resisted.

Question: "Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no longer stubborn." Deut. 10:16 --> If God commands the Israelites to circumcise their own hearts in this verse and in Jer. 4:4, how can we reconcile these two verses with monergistic principles?

Answer: Good question.

Tue, 12/31/2013 - 11:50 -- john_hendryx

Our Poisoned Culture of Libel and Defamation

I have not historically spent much time, if any, obsessing on the various sexual liberation agendas in our culture. But it has come to my attention that perhaps the most troubled and confused people in our current society are those who accuse Christians of hate speech and homophobia for simply wanting to share the gospel with them. Such groundless declarations of hate betray the speakers themselves as a people driven by irrational prejudice. In doing so they are creating a poisoned cultural, educational and political atmosphere which they teach others to hate Christians for something they don't even believe, nor has it crossed our mind .... since no true Christian believes he/she morally better and many of us have committed much worse sins. We are here to proclaim freedom to those enslaved, ourselves included. It is mercy alone which saved us, and certainly not any good in us.

It is one thing to say that you don't believe Christianity to be true but quite another to declare that it must come from hate. Sadly I do believe a large number of people promoting these cultural myths know this, but truth seems to go out the window for people when they have a political agenda. However, when such an agenda involves smearing others with non-existent motives, then this is a form of defamation and is ITSELF perhaps the worst form of hate there is. Perhaps THIS is the source of our very hostile, divided culture. If there are so-called Christians, who are hateful, and no doubt there are, surprising as it may sound to some, a more conservative view of theology is the answer to dealing with such ignorance and bigotry. Jesus who delivers ALL OF US from some form(s) of bondage, calls us to proclaim liberty to captives whoever they may be, homosexual or otherwise.

Sat, 12/28/2013 - 14:26 -- john_hendryx


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