Sunday, July 19, 2009

OSAS vs Non eternal Salvation...A wee peek!

I was listening to an interesting debate between two men from Non Calvinist positions on the subject of "Eternal Security" held in May this year at Messiah's Christian Fellowship.

A veritable litany of bad exegesis, philosophical speculation, emotionalism and man centered sentiment.

On the opposing side against eternal security is the *Pelagian Steve Gregg, a man I have had interaction with in the past, and another man Tommy Bertoli whom I have never heard of, who I think was representing the Once saved always saved (OSAS) position of the Arminians.

I don't think I have ever heard a debate between synergistic men before upon the subject which we Reformed call "Perseverance of the Saints".

The debate truly shows that what Calvinists teach on "Eternal Security" is definitely not what these men teach and believe, including the OSAS view.

What was interesting for me what was being implied and or the other issues connected with the subject of eternal security that kind of came up but ignored.
It is absolutely stunning how the debate in no manner even remotely touched upon the subject of Christ and His ability to keep His own. The Mediator role of Christ. The consistency of the work of the Triune God in salvation. The nature of the Atonement etc etc...You will not find any discussion of any of this, nor will you find the actual passages that are related to this subject.

It is interesting to hear Gregg get carried away during the cross examination a number of times (talking over his opponent also) and emotionally he cranked up the heat upon his opponent for use of a particular illustration he used, when in fact the illustration was a valid one, and a direct response connected explicitly with the way Gregg had used the "Obama Choir singers" club as an illustration that election has to do with a corporate thing rather than being individual and particular. Then his opponent later seems to get quite emotional too. But, at least he made a half reasonable defense of Predestination during the questions at the end, even though he pointed out he was not a Calvinist.

Everything seemed in the end to come down on the focus of what "we" the mighty individual must do or not do and the questions/answers get bogged down in this mire.
Made for interesting hearing but I was nearly pulling out my hair by the end just waiting for someone in that place to bring up the Power of God and His will.

A lady brought up the issue of "Adoption" right at the end and Steve Gregg told her that God will abandon His children if they abandon Him, but of course, Steve tells everyone he personally will never abandon God, never has desired such a thing and most likely never will.
How encouraging is that?

Good for you Steve, let us all hope our faith is as good as yours.

I'm, sorry, but this is another gospel and another jesus I am hearing about.

The Jesus of the Bible is the one represented by Paul below, who not only never forsakes His own, but saves to the uttermost, and shall not lose one which has been given to Him and is the author and finisher of our salvation.
(Psa_37:25, Jos_1:5, Heb 13:5, Heb 7:25, Joh 6:39, Joh 10:28, Heb 12:2)
Rom 8:33-39,
Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies.
Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died--more than that, who was raised--who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?
As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered."
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,
nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.


Seems to me, Gregg and others believe "our will/choice" can separate us from all of those things mentioned above.
How sad, and how weak is such a salvation?

It truly was amazing to listen to this debate.

Part 1
Part 2

*And Yes, he is a Pelagian. Here is a quote of his.

The question is asked of Steve,

"Let me get this straight Steve, the natural man can respond positively to God, actually seek God, simply on His disclosure in nature? So men look at the starry hosts at night and decide to worship the one true God - under their own inward steam?"

Steve's reply,

Why not? Romans 1:20 says that these evidences alone render a man "without excuse." This certainly implies man's capability and responsibility to respond to such stimuli in the environment as God has placed there to make Himself known. If man cannot respond to this, then he certainly has an "excuse" for not doing so. What better excuse can one offer, but that the thing required of him was beyond his human capabilities?

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