Monday, January 1, 2018

TETH's Dictionary


Given that word definitions are essential to a proper understanding of one's written works, I submit TETH's dictionary for your examination. I hope that this will be instrumental in helping further clarify our meaning in the coming weeks and months. (TETH)


Absolute Predestination - an oft employed shorthand for the Absolute Predestination of All Things.

Absolute Predestination of All Things (APOAT) - (also known as Absolute Predestination, Absolutism) - the belief that God has absolutely predestinated all things which do come to pass including his own actions as well as the actions of all creatures, whether good or evil, in precisely the same fashion. It is a form of Christian Irrationalism in that it posits a God who is undeniably the immediate author of sin while insisting that He is light and in Him is no darkness at all (I John 1:5).

Absolutism - (see Absolute Predestination of All Things) This term is often employed among Primitive Baptists as a synonym for Calvinism. It is another term frequently employed as shorthand for the Absolute Predestination of All Things.

Amillennialism - (see NowMillennialism) - The belief that the kingdom of God is a present, spiritual reality rather than a future, literal, political kingdom to be established on earth. The term is an erroneous pejorative applied to NowMillennialists by those of other eschatological views that has been widely and pragmatically accepted by those who are labeled thereby, in spite of its inherent inaccuracy.

Another Jesus - any "Jesus" that misrepresents the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ described in the bible. Broadly speaking, it is any "Jesus" who either (1) is not God, or (2) did not accomplish the salvation of his people.

Antinomianism - literally "against law" - this term is most commonly employed to suggest that those who believe in salvation by grace likewise promote living a sinful life, as suggested by Romans 6:1-2.  But to teach that the law no longer has a legal claim upon the redeemed is not the same as teaching that people should live in sin. The moral dimensions of God's law are reiterated as precepts of obedient discipleship in the New Testament. While it is true that there is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, it is likewise true that sinful disobedience brings with it temporal consequences and we are admonished unto obedience as our reasonable service to God (Romans 12:1).

Antinomy - a fundamental concept of Christian Irrationalism wherein an apparent logical contradiction is insistently promoted as "no contradiction at all" without any rational explanation to substantiate that claim. The concept was popularized among modern Calvinists by J. I. Packer's book The Sovereignty of God and Evangelism. It is an intellectually threadbare slight of hand whose only purpose is to prevent the proper exercise of right division whereby one or more of the theological points supported by the antinomy would be undermined.

Antinomy Calvinism - Any form of Calvinism which embraces both particular redemption, as well as the well-meant offer of salvation to all of humanity, or teaches that salvation is all of God and yet man is also responsible. Essentially a synonym for the most popular strains of Calvinism promoted in Christendom today.

Arminianism - 1) In the most formal sense, the system of belief promoted by Dutch theologian Jacobus Arminius in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. It is essentially the opposite of the five points of Calvinism, though it predates the formation of the TULIP acrostic. 2) In common parlance it has reference to any Christian soteriology wherein the exercise of faith is a prerequisite for regeneration or that rejects the total depravity of man as a result of the fall, either outright or through a secondary mechanism such as Wesleyan prevenient grace.

Born Again (Born from Above) - the immediate passing from death unto life that results from God's effectual call of his covenant people chosen before the foundation of the world (John 5:25, Galatians 4:6, Ephesians 1:4-5). It is of incorruptible seed - namely Christ himself (I Peter 1:23).

Called - The life-giving fiat of God whereby eternal life is immediately imparted to one of his covenant people as represented in John 5:25 and Romans 8:28-30. It is distinct from the "gospel call" found in passages like II Thessalonians 2:14. The Nicodemian Precept (John 3:3) teaches that the effectual call (John 5:25) is a prerequisite apart from which the gospel call proves utterly ineffectual (I Corinthians 2:14).

Calvinism - an essentially meaningless term in virtually all theological discussions given the wide degree of latitude with which the term is employed in Christendom. Broadly speaking, it involves those who embrace some variation of the five doctrines of grace (TULIP), though this is a coarse definition given the existence of so-called 4-Point, and 3-Point "Calvinists" as well as the numerous other doctrines that are often included as essential to this moniker.

Child of God - one of those chosen before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blame before him in love (Ephesians 1:4-5).

Christian Apparel - clothing that unnecessarily proclaims that which is evident in the life of a diligent disciple of Christ or proclaims that which no one will believe about one who is not.

Christian Irrationalism any Christian theology which insists that a correct understanding of scripture is found by embracing contradictory claims and insisting that both are true. When backed into a corner the Christian Irrationalist often defends their irrational position through appeals to Deuteronomy 29:29a (which ignore v29b), references to Isaiah 55, arguments based on "God's logic is not our logic" or "you're trying to understand God's truth using man's logic", etc. Christian Irrationalists often attempt to soften the appearance of irrationalism by references to "balance", "antinomy", or "mystery." It is no hyperbole to state that the vast majority of Christian theology falls into the category of Christian Irrationalism. The archenemy of Christian Irrationalism is the rightly divided truth of the Christian religion which which does not reside in logical contradictions (John 10:35, II Timothy 2:15, II Timothy 3:16-17).

Conversion - the combination of one who has ears to ear coming into contact with the truth, believing that truth, and living in accordance with it (James 5:19-20, Luke 22:32). It is an oft-repeated, synergistic event in the life of an obedient disciple of Christ and is distinct and separate from the monergistic grace of regeneration. Many errors in Christian theology arise from a failure to make this distinction.

Covenant - a unilateral or multi-lateral agreement whereby certain conditions are met to a purposed end for a named beneficiary.

Creedalism - the denial of the sufficiency of scripture expressed as an appeal to any secondary source as a means of establishing any theological truth rather than substantiating that truth via a direct, transparent appeal to scripture or the belief that extra-biblical creeds or confessions of faith have any authority whatsoever in the matter of establishing Christian doctrine or determining the "orthodoxy" of one's profession of faith. It is often exhibited by people who would deny any adherence to creedalism whatsoever, through an appeal to such documents as a valid means of legitimizing some particular theological position. To avoid the legitimate accusation of being a "creedalist" one must substantiate all theological positions based on a direct appeal to the scriptures, and relegate all "creedal" observations to a matter of historical curiosity that has NO BEARING on the establishment of Christian truth.

Depravity - the human state of being dead in trespasses and in sins (Ephesians 2:1) inherited by all men from the fall of humanity in Adam (Romans 5:12). It is a condition that renders one utterly incapacitated so far as spiritual matters are concerned (John 6:63) and therefore meet for eternal damnation apart from the intervening grace of God (John 3:3).

Determinism - in the broadest sense, the doctrine that all events, including human action, are ultimately determined by causes external to the will. Some philosophers have taken determinism to imply that individual human beings have no free will and cannot be held morally responsible for their actions.

Effectual Call - See Called.

Elect - A person chosen before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blame before God in love (Ephesians 1:4-5).  Their status as "elect" does not result from anything found in them, but rather as a function of God's mercy and grace toward an inherently unworthy object (Titus 3:5, Exodus 33:19).

Election - God's merciful act of choosing a people to save for his glory based on his sovereign mercy alone and not upon any merit found in the creature (Exodus 33:19, Romans 9:16, Ephesians 1:4-5).

Eternal Life - That which is impossible for men but not for God (Matthew 19:26), which is based on the word of God alone (Romans 8:33) and not according to our works at all (Titus 3:5, Romans 9:16). It is a composite of many monergistic works across time,  bound together by an everlasting covenant that is ordered in all things and sure (II Samuel 23:5). Those works include are defined by the following terms: choosing (Ephesians 1:4-6), foreknowledge, predestination, calling, justification, glorification (Romans 8:29-30), redemption (Hebrews 9:12), bought (I Corinthians 6:20), sanctification (Hebrews 10:10), purging (Hebrews 1:3), regeneration (Titus 3:5), being born again (John 3:3), and many other such works (for this is not intended to be a comprehensive list). All of these works are performed by God alone, apart from man’s participation. It involves a vital, familial knowledge of God, and of Jesus Christ who is one with him (John 17:2-3), though this evidently does NOT include and understanding of explicit NT gospel mechanics for all of the elect, nor even knowledge of the name “Jesus Christ”, given the bible’s testimony regarding those were given “eternal life” apart from this. It is given by God in covenant before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-6), bought by Christ transactionally at Calvary (II Corinthians 5:21), and given to God’s chosen sons vitally at regeneration (Galatians 4:6) when they are quickened unto divine life (Ephesians 2:1,5; Colossians 2:13) from their prior, fallen state of being dead in trespasses and in sins (Ephesians 2:1). Raised from a dead state, a regenerate man is given eternal life by the divine, quickening fiat of God (John 5:25), given eternal life in a vital sense at that moment, and shall never perish from that state (John 10:28). One who is in possession of eternal life will live in glory with God for all eternity (Matthew 25:46).

Evangelical Calvinism - A form of Christian Irrationalism wherein the "gospel" is a well-meant (sincere) offer of salvation to all of humanity though Christ did not die for all of humanity and where the gospel message is instrumental in regeneration. (See also NeoCalvinism, Fullerism, Antinomy Calvinism, Well-Meant Offerism)

Evangelism - The ministry of spreading the good news message of the Lord Jesus Christ which involves: 1. A truth proclaimed (I Corinthians 15:3-4, Matthew 1:21), 2. An assurance given (John 3:16, 6:47). 3. An admonition made (Acts 2:40, Romans 12:1, John 14:15) It is a call to obedient discipleship to those who have the ears to hear, not a call to give eternal life to those who lack the ears to hear. It brings life and immortality to light (II Timothy 1:10) - whereas only God himself can call a man to eternal life (John 5:25). Ironically, reading the aforestated definition of Evangelism constitutes an act of Evangelism upon completion thereof.

Faith a vital capacity of the new creature in Christ, given by God (Ephesians 2:8, Philippians 1:29) in regeneration (Galatians 4:6) as a fruit of the indwelling Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22), which is an evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1), such as the election, predestination, and calling which of necessity preceded it. While the capacity of faith, which Jesus called “the ears to hear”, is possessed by all the regenerate (Mark 4:23a), the exercise of that God-given faith toward any particular spiritual truth is by no means certain. It waxes and wanes as a result of remaining sin (I John 1:8, Mark 4:49, 9:24) and our struggle with the old man’s sin nature (Romans 7:14-25). It is for this reason that the bible regularly exhorts God’s sheep to exercise their God-given capacity of faith in conformity to the spiritual truths set before them (Mark 23:b, John 14:1, Colossians 1:23, 2:7, I Timothy 1:4, etc.), and to use their faith as a tool for navigating the wicked world that surrounds them (Habakkuk 2:4, Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:38) by separating from sin and error (II Corinthians 6:17, Romans 8:13, Colossians 3:5ff) and encouraging others to do the same (Romans 12:1-2). In addition to both the capacity of faith and the exercise of faith, the bible at times uses the term faith in reference to the body of beliefs handed down by the prophets, apostles, and the Lord Jesus Christ himself (Jude 1:3, Acts 6:7, Colossians 1:23, I Timothy 4:1). 

Formal Creedalism - the practice of requiring some measure of formal allegiance to a written creed other than the word of God as a test for doctrinal orthodoxy, ministry ordination, or church membership.

Four Spiritual Laws - an erroneous false gospel that confounds the minds of a great many of God's people by proselytizing them in the unstable doctrine of human involvement in the work of eternal salvation. It was created by Bill Bright and made popular by Campus Crusade for Christ and a host of other doctrinally unstable churches and ministries who use it as a gospel teaching tool in evangelism.

Free Grace - a theological moniker most often associated with Arminians who oppose Lordship Salvation. Lordship adherents often belittle this theology as “cheap grace.” Free Grace and Lordship Salvation are the two poles in a false dichotomy that confounds many who enter into the matter. The truth is found at neither pole and only a third alternative embraces the full truth of our salvation in Christ.

Free Will - the ability for a creature to act freely within the confines of its nature. It is never absolute. This term is often thrown around recklessly without any definition by those who both promote it and deny it. Apart from a clear definition of what one intends by this phrase, all discussions of the matter are vain and often contentious.

Fulton Confession of Faith - the Second London Confession of Faith with clarifying footnotes added by Primitive Baptist Elders at a meeting in Fulton, KY in 1900.  At a bare minimum it is a document that affirms the Old Baptist liberties of annotation and clarification.

Gospel - The gospel is the good news proclamation of the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 19:30) to save his people from their sins (Matthew 1:21) by his death, burial and resurrection according to the scriptures (I Corinthians 15:3-4, II Corinthians 5:21).
 It is accompanied by the assurance that those who believe this testimony HAVE eternal life and shall never perish (John 6:37, John 10:27-28) and the admonition to follow Christ in obedient discipleship (John 14:15) as one’s reasonable service to God (Romans 12:1) More here.

Gospel Call - The proclamation of the gospel message of the grace of Christ (Galatians 1:6) that brings life and immortality to light (II Timothy 1:10). It is distinct and separate from the effectual call in that it is not explicitly given to ALL of God’s covenant people (Job 9:6) whereas the effectual call is (Galatians 4:6).

Gospel Conversion
- The encounter and receipt of gospel truth by one who has the ears to hear it (John 3:3, 8:47).

Grace - Unmerited favor that is not according to our works in any fashion. (Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:5, II Timothy 1:9).

HyperCalvinism - An almost meaningless term given the great breadth of meaning with which it is commonly employed among Christians.  It is almost always used in a pejorative sense with a meaning that could be loosely translated as "you have a more extreme view than my own position and are therefore wrong." It is employed by some to mean "one who believes in election" by others as, "one who believes in TULIP" by others as "one who believes the gospel is not an offer" and still others who use it to mean, "one who does not believe in preaching the gospel." When encountered, it is usually best to identify what specific belief is involved in the mind of one who has chosen to employ the term and resist any urge to debate the terminology directly, given its great breadth of meaning.

HyperMonergism - the belief that because the work of our eternal salvation is the result of a monergistic act of God that therefore the works of righteousness done by a child of God are likewise monergistic acts of God.

Immediate Holy Spirit Regeneration - The bible doctrine that there is ONE mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus (I Timothy 2:5) no human means are involved in the impartation of eternal life to God's chosen, covenant people. Just as God breathed natural life into Adam without any mediation whatsoever, God likewise imparts eternal life to his people as monergistic act of grace in a monergistic

In Christ - a phrase used in numerous ways in scripture to describe various facets of the relationship of a child of God to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Usages include covenantal (Ephesians 1:4-5), vital (II Corinthians 5:17), and redemptive (Romans 3:24). Many theological errors arise from carelessly asserting that "in Christ" has only one meaning. Proper handling requires a close attention to the context in which this phrase is used.

Irresistible Grace - (see Immediate Holy Spirit Regeneration)

NeoCalvinism - For all practical purposes, NeoCalvinism is no different from what most consider to be "Calvinism" in this day and age. TETH uses this term in reference to a form of evangelical irrationalism that claims to be either Calvinistic or Reformed and which, at a bare minimum, believes the following three doctrines: (1) particular redemption, (2) the universal love of god for all of humanity, and (3) the well-meant offer of salvation to all of humanity. It is promoted in a variety of different flavors by the likes of John MacArthur, John Piper, Steve Lawson, Al Mohler, and Paul Washer. These beliefs are often found under the moniker of "New Calvinism" in the Christian marketplace as well. The prefix "neo" is employed to distinguish this theology from more-stable forms of Calvinism which do not affirm the universal love of God or the WMO. In common usage the core theological assertions of NeoCalvinism are virtually identical to a host of Calvinistic variants such as: Both-And-ism, Antinomy-Calvinism, Van-Til-ism, Fullerism, Well-Meant-Offerism, Evangelical-Calvinism, Lordship Salvation, New Calvinism, etc. While each of these may append additional doctrinal elements to their system, they nonetheless agree on the aforementioned core-truths. While sharing the same moniker, the way that TETH uses the term is not to be confused with the Dutch Reformed "Neo-Calvinism" of Abraham Kuyper, though there are similarities between the two.

NowMillennialism - a term coined as a replacement for the theology often referred to by the misnomer of Amillennialism. It designs the belief that the kingdom of God is a present reality based on the Lord's teaching that the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Matthew 3:2, 4:17, 10:7, Mark 1:15, Luke 21:31) and not a future, literal, thousand-year kingdom to be established on earth.

Not - the indispensable tool of Christian discernment that must be consistently employed by disciples in the broad world of Christendom which insists on teaching that salvation is "of him that willeth, and of him that runneth."

Limited Atonement - The biblical doctrine that Jesus Christ gave his life for the sheep (John 10:11) and that some men are not sheep (John 10:26). It opposes the common error that belief determines sheep-hood (John 10:26).

Logic - the non-contradictory fashion way that God thinks as evidenced by his having revealed himself to us as the "logos" (John 1:1), the fact that his revelation to us is non-contradictory (John 10:35), capable of being reasoned from (Acts 17:2), and able to be rightly divided when properly understood (II Timothy 2:15). This concept is central to obtaining a proper understanding of the truth along the path of Christian discipleship and it stands in stark contrast to the various forms of Christian Irrationalism that exist in the evangelical marketplace today.

Lordship Salvation - a form of NeoCalvinism promoted by John MacArthur that hinges eternal salvation on "total commitment" to God and promotes both Particular Redemption and the WMO. It is a form of Christian Irrationalism.

Might Have Been Redemption - (see Possibilitarian)

Monergism - the work of one. From the Greek words mono  which means one, and ergo which means work. While this term has been most frequently used with respect to the doctrine of regeneration in theological discussions, the term can be applied as a descriptor of any work with only one active working component.

New Birth - See Immediate Holy Spirit Regeneration.

Omnipotence - God's power to do anything that is in keeping with his holy character.

Ordo Salutis - latin for "order of salvation."

Other Orders - commonly employed by Primitive Baptist ministers and church members, a term which designs groups under the broad rubric of Christianity who are not Primitive Baptists.

Paradox - (under construction)

Paradox Theology - any theology that employs logical contradictions to "reconcile" its precepts. These logical contradictions are usually cast as "paradoxes," "mysteries," or "antinomies" as this sounds far more sophisticated than stating "I have a bald logical contradiction in the middle of my theology." Paradox Theology undermines the profitable potential of reasoning from the scriptures, by suggesting that truth may be contrary to logic, making all reasonable conclusions from scripture suspect. It is equivalent in danger to a denial of the inspiration and/or preservation of scripture, though those who hold this view are violently opposed to this assertion.

Particular Redemption - See Limited Atonement.

PB - abbreviation for Primitive Baptist.

PBBB - an acronym for Primitive Baptists Behaving Badly occasionally used by TETH. It designs the admission that Primitive Baptists are sinners saved by grace who do not behave as they ought from time to time. At times shortened to PB3.

Perseverance - (see in contrast with Preservation) Synergistic works of righteous obedience to the truth that are excluded from having any active, participatory involvement with the work that brings eternal salvation to God's people.  More here and here.

Plain-Meaningism - a short-sighted hermeneutic that emphasizes what it believes to the be the clearly evident surface reading of a text to the exclusion of either important contextual queues, logical ramifications, or systematically established precepts found elsewhere in scripture, which would require a different interpretation in order to avoid logical contradiction.  It is the opposite of the biblical precept of Right Division wherein full logical consistency with the entirety of God's revelation is required. An example of plain-meaningism is found in the clear literal reading of Malachi 4:5, whereas right division requires that its proper meaning meaning must be shaped by the full testimony of scripture which includes Matthew 11:14, and which proves that the approach of plain-meaningism is an insubstantial hermeneutic upon which to base one's theological assertions.

Possibilitarians - a a super-denomination which encompasses the overwhelming majority of those who profess faith in Jesus Christ. It is the belief that the death of Jesus Christ made salvation a possibility for all of humanity, but that salvation is only made an actuality for any individual when they ratify His work by either believing it or believing it and performing some additional act(s). They are often found engaging in vigorous theological debates regarding what beliefs or acts comprise the correct formula for eternal salvation, but are all in violent agreement that the blood of Christ alone,
in and of itself, did not eternally save anyone, though many of them are loath to admit that when directly pressed on the matter.

Preservation
 - (see in contrast with Perseverance)

Prevenient Grace - any preceding "grace" that nullifies the totality of man's depravity but is not regeneration.

Redemption - a past accomplishment of the Lord Jesus Christ at Calvary (Hebrews 9:12) wherein our sins were paid for by the blood of Christ on our behalf.

Redonku-epic - the hyper-superlative form of redonkulous being greater than either redonkuler and redonukulist. Coined as the only possible response to Brother Joseph Theodore Nettle's Facebook post on 6/12/2015.

Reformed - as with Calvinism, this term is utilized with such breadth of meaning as to be virtually useless in describing what someone believes. In most instances it is safe to say this term means that someone is Protestant rather than Roman Catholic and probably adheres to some form of TULIP, but there are many exceptions.

Regenerate - born again, in possession of eternal life, eternally saved.

Regeneration - God's monergistic, covenantal, immediate act whereby eternal life is imparted to one who was dead in trespasses and in sins (Ephesians 2:1) See also Immediate Holy Spirit Regeneration.

Right Division - a proper, spirit-enabled, logical understanding of the bible that makes sense both line upon line (exegetically) as well as precept upon precept (systematically), apart from which we are wrapped in contradictions and nonsense.

Second Galatian Confession of Faith - the set of explicit beliefs or logically unavoidable implications of such beliefs erroneously taught in the churches of Galatia as explicitly set forth by the apostle Paul in the Galatian epistle. This confession makes certain that a true church is capable of teaching and proselytizing others in false beliefs as a matter of creed, and therefore undermines the efficacy of any authoritative appeal to historical church creeds as any basis for substantiating biblical truth, regardless of the legitimacy of its church pedigree.

Second London Confession of Faith (1689) - a light-revision of Presbyterianism written by 17th century baptists. It is at times employed as a means of establishing biblical truth via church genealogy in an ironic violation of its first article: "The whole counsel of God concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man's salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down or necessarily contained in the Holy Scripture, to which nothing is to be added at any time, either by new revelation of the Spirit, or by the traditions of men." (SLC, 1.6) Whatever else may be said of this document, at a minimum one must recognize that it affirms the Old Baptist liberties of borrowing, editing, composition, and rejection; and this observation is essential to a proper view of the role of such creeds in Baptist history.

Sin - 1) failure to live in accordance with the revealed will of God, 2) the ubiquitous paradox whereby one easy choice eliminates all subsequent easy choices.

Sola Scriptura
- a phrase found nowhere in scripture ironically and vociferously employed to insist that one rely solely upon scripture for the establishment of Christian truth by those who most frequently support their arguments via references to church creeds, confessions, books, or other extra-biblical sources. As an authoritative precept, it is self-contradictory, given the evident superiority of Matthew 4:4.

Sound Bite Theology - see Sound-Bite-ism. A short-sighted, non-systematic system of beliefs that relies upon assertions drawn from an handful of verses and which turns a blind eye to verses that would force a different interpretation of those few texts. It is closely related to Plain Meaningism.

Sound-Bite-ism - the practice of building one's theology on scant and wrongly divided biblical testimony. Essentially the same as Sound Byte Theology.

Synergism - the work of more than one, a cooperative.

TETH - 1) An acronym for The Ears To Hear (theearstohear) originally coined as a nickname by a faithful reader, 2) the ministry of a lone Primitive Baptist that provides biblical analysis of popular theological notions in the spirit of James 5:19-20, 3) a reference to Psalm 119:65-72 that is strangely biographical. 4) A ministry that usually agrees with the writings and preaching of Elder Daniel Samons and on the rare occasions that it doesn't, it's probably just something I ate.

TETH's Standard Disclaimer - the biblical admonition to "prove all things, hold fast that which is good." (I Thessalonians 5:21) is central to the purpose of theearstohear.com. We believe it is enormously profitable for a disciple of Christ to have a proper understanding of doctrine and practice and it is for this reason that we seek to directly and biblically confront many of the common and erroneous claims we see peddled in the Christian marketplace today in the spirit of James 5:19-20. Unless otherwise indicated, TETH's analysis is always made with the following disclaimer: (1) We do not question the sincerity or profession of faith of those whose doctrine we oppose, (2) we do not doubt that many who believe the things we believe are false are nonetheless blood bought children of God who will be in heaven with God, and (3) we believe it is important to confront false beliefs because the promotion of nonsense is NOT the promotion of spiritual truth.

Tethralapsarianism - Distinct from both Supralapsarianism (decreed election before permitted fall) and Infralapsarianism (permitted fall before decreed election) - this view asks - why must we assume that God's love for his people begins with His choice to save them from their sins? If we are to enter into the folly of attempting to order events that preceded the creation of time, why must we assume that LOVE and ELECTION have their beginning in the same instant and then FORCE this instant to be either before or after the permission of the fall? I loved my wife before I chose to marry her, and my choice was motivated by that love.

Total Commitment - (under construction)

Total Surrender - (see Total Commitment)

Total Depravity - the idea that all of humanity is by nature dead in trespasses and in sins (Ephesians 2:1, Romans 3:10-18) as a result of the Adam's transgression. (Romans 5:12) It speaks of man's abject incapacity to extract himself from this condition (Jeremiah 13:23) and affirms that everything he ever does in such a condition, no matter how outwardly moral or socially good it may seem to be, is sin in the eyes of God (Romans 14:23), being devoid of the faith which is a fruit of the indwelling Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22) he lacks (Romans 8:9) and which is required for one's actions to be pleasing to God (Hebrews 11:6).

TULIP (Calvinistic) - (under construction)

TULIP (Primitive Baptist) - (under construction)

Unconditional Election - God chose a people to save (Ephesians 1:4-5) based entirely on his sovereign desire to show mercy on whom he will show mercy (Exodus 33:19) and based in no part upon anything found in the mutable, fallen creature (Titus 3:5). The doctrine of Total Depravity makes Unconditional Election a matter of unavoidable logical consequence.

Unlimited Atonement - the biblical view of the atonement that affirms the absolute efficacy of Christ's atonement along with the reality of an occupied hell. Affirming the former without the latter gives rise to the error of Universalism. Affirming the latter without the former gives rise to the blasphemous assertion that the blood of Christ did not actually accomplish salvation apart from man's approval thereof.

Unregenerate - man's natural state from conception since the fall wherein he is dead in trespassess and sins (Ephesians 2:1), enmity against God (Romans 8:7), utterly incapable of doing good (Romans 3:10-18), and incapable of receiving spiritual truth (I Corinthians 2:11-14). Immediate Holy Spirit Regeneration is required to overcome this state.

Van-Til-ism - a branch of Calvinistic theology made popular by the highly-irrational works of Dr. Cornelius VanTil. It is a form of NeoCalvinism.

Waterboarding Calvinism - the most strident forms of Calvinism wherein there is perpetual and intense external interrogation of an individual in an effort to uncover evidence of behavior and or thoughts sufficient to declare them a false convert. Many WCs are found among the Lordship Salvationists.

Well-Meant Offerism - any theology, whether taught under the banner of Arminianism, Calvinism, or any other name, that asserts that the gospel is making a sincere offer of salvation to all of humanity. (see also NeoCalvinism)

Works - that which a man does.


All definitions as of 20170103 unless otherwise noted.

27 comments:

  1. PLS. Examine this video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saR8_lGjZA8

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Adrian, I watched the entire video. I disagreed with many of the arguments presented. May I invite you, in turn, to examine my blog?
      https://www.theformofthefourth.com/2018/03/17/are-you-dying-inside-part-2c8

      God bless.

      Delete
    2. I have seen the video (all three parts). It contains some valid criticisms of things that PBs have done wrong over the years along with a host of crass mischaracterizations and slanderous remarks. The notion that the Primitive Baptist Church is a "cult" is laughable. That said, if there is a particular statement in the video to which you would like me to respond, if you'll set it before me I'll gladly do so.

      God bless,
      TETH

      Delete
    3. Agreed. I watched all three parts as well.

      I grew up in PB churches. At a certain point, I decided to leave. No one harrassed or threatened me. No one said I would go to hell. And after 6 years away, I decided to return. No one looked at me suspiciously or interrogated me. So, the PBs preach a doctrine rarely preached among conservative Christian churches. That makes them a cult?

      Besides...while I was away visting other churches, I discovered an interesting fact. Some people in non PB churches quietly agree with PB teachings, and many others aren't really sure WHAT they believe. On the intake form for being a Sunday school teacher, I explicitly wrote what I believed. I gave it to them straight. And they let me teach Sunday school anyway.

      God bless,

      The Form of the Fourth

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  2. Hello Teth,

    Listening & reading through your blog, comments and answers to questions, I clearly perceive you received a great understanding of Scripture and likewise ability to express and explain these matters. Its great to see that you first and foremost seek to be faithful to Scripture instead of certain cofessions or historical religious documents. Not that those won't contain Biblical truths, but as certain as they will have such, it is likewise certain they have certain (human) flaws.

    However, as a non PB and having not a comprehensive idea what beliefs they hold to in general, I searched some websites in general and more specifically websites that you refer to. It begins to become more clear then and in certain areas eye opening!
    With regards to some systematic theology, like many Reformed Theologians have compiled about their beliefs, would you regard R V Sarrels as true representation of PB beliefs? Or a book by Elder Jeff Winfrey "What shall we say then?" Or something like the book by elder Vernon Johnson, Bible Study notebook, from March to Zion?

    Don't get me wrong, its not that I think all will be contained in such a volume, but It clearly helps in seeing and understanding they way you (PB's) think in rightly dividing the Word of Truth.
    I read for example one of the latest content of March to Zion, a small pocket "Of free justification, by the Blood and Righteousness of Christ", wrtten by a brother named Wilson Thompson; truly amazing, in the sense of eye opening and reading what the Bible says on such a great topic.

    Well, I hope you have some helpful thoughts/advice for reading and understanding PB's rightly, since they also come in a variety of ways. (just as reformed or other denominiations)

    I much appreciate your labor,
    Ezra T

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  3. TETH ANSWER 101

    EZRA: Hello Teth, Listening & reading through your blog, comments and answers to questions, I clearly perceive you received a great understanding of Scripture and likewise ability to express and explain these matters.

    TETH: Thank you for those kind words. They are encouraging to me. I’ve had some folks tell me that they prefer reading the comments section more than the blog itself. ☺

    EZRA: It’s great to see that you first and foremost seek to be faithful to Scripture instead of certain confessions or historical religious documents. Not that those won't contain Biblical truths, but as certain as they will have such, it is likewise certain they have certain (human) flaws.

    TETH: I think this is a very important perspective to maintain that very quickly becomes clouded or forgotten when people begin referencing secondary sources.

    EZRA: However, as a non PB and having not a comprehensive idea what beliefs they hold to in general, I searched some websites in general and more specifically websites that you refer to. It begins to become more clear then and in certain areas eye opening!

    TETH: There’s a fair amount of PB writing on the Internet, though it does take some digging to find it.

    EZRA: With regards to some systematic theology, like many Reformed Theologians have compiled about their beliefs, would you regard R V Sarrels as true representation of PB beliefs? Or a book by Elder Jeff Winfrey "What shall we say then?" Or something like the book by elder Vernon Johnson, Bible Study notebook, from March to Zion?

    TETH: I don’t doubt that RV Sarrels was an Old Baptist. As to whether or not his writing is a “true representation of PB beliefs” that depends on what you mean by that phrase. Since he was undeniably an Old Baptist, then it follows from that alone that his writings were a true representation of Old Baptist beliefs at least in the sense of being an honest expression of what at least one Old Baptist believed. If by “true representation” you intend “the truth of the faith once delivered to the saints” that’s a different question. I have not read Sarrels enough to feel comfortable affirming that statement.

    TETH: I have not read Winfrey’s book but I have heard a fair amount of his preaching and have not found any disagreement with what he says and what I believe the bible teaches. I do have Elder Vernon Johnson’s notebook and have spent some time reading through it. I don’t recall any disagreement what what I found there. I have not read the MTZ bible study notebook.

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    1. TETH ANSWER 102

      EZRA: Don't get me wrong, its not that I think all will be contained in such a volume, but It clearly helps in seeing and understanding they way you (PB's) think in rightly dividing the Word of Truth.

      TETH: I understand and agree. It is very helpful to read the writings of other men to understand their perspectives on how the truth should be rightly divided. At times I have been accused (by others) of believing that creeds, confessions, and historical writings have no value whatsoever and this is incorrect. I believe they are most helpful in understanding the scriptural underpinnings of their beliefs so that we can search the scriptures to see if these things are so.

      TETH: Incidentally, that is my primary motivation behind pointing people back to the scriptures as the ONLY rule of faith and practice, because this is the model set forth in the bible.

      “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” (Acts 17:11)

      TETH: Here we see the proper model for instruction on display. The Berean’s listened to Paul with all readiness of mind, but they did not say, “Well, Paul preached it, and Paul was an Old Baptist, therefore it’s right whether the scriptural data supports his claims or not.” Instead they said, “We hear what you said Paul, but we’re going to go check the scriptures because THAT is what determines the truth of the matter.” The fact that Paul was an apostle that was inspired to write most of the NT only emphasizes the Berean insistence upon making scripture the determining factor of truth even more striking. In other words, if they relied upon a direct appeal to scripture to establish what an apostle taught, how much more should we rely upon scripture to establish what non-apostle’s have taught. As one raised in a Reformed Presbyterian church, I have seen first-hand the dangers that the writings of men can visit into one’s belief system if not placed and maintained in their proper and utter subordination to scripture. I try to promote Berean nobility among the Old Baptists as I believe this is the best means of preventing us from slipping into the unprofitable sorts of “creedalism” that encroach upon us and that have a tendency to train our eyes upon secondary sources rather than on the word of God.

      EZRA: I read for example one of the latest content of March to Zion, a small pocket "Of free justification, by the Blood and Righteousness of Christ", written by a brother named Wilson Thompson; truly amazing, in the sense of eye opening and reading what the Bible says on such a great topic.

      TETH: Yes. I believe there are many such writings by Wilson Thompson and by other Old Baptists.

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    2. TETH ANSWER 103

      EZRA: Well, I hope you have some helpful thoughts/advice for reading and understanding PB's rightly, since they also come in a variety of ways. (just as reformed or other denominations)

      TETH: My advice is to search the scriptures daily to see if these things are so (Acts 17:11) and to avoid the commonly promoted error of insisting that if someone was an Old Baptist (or Primitive Baptist) that what they taught or affirmed is, of necessity, the truth. That statement is demonstrably false from the scriptures as even Old Baptist churches in the time of Paul were teaching wrong ideas, though they were indisputably Old Baptist as a matter of church pedigree (Galatians 1:6). Our beliefs should be based on the scriptures, period. If we hear someone teach something, we should examine the scriptures to see if these things are so. If we find that these things are so, we should believe them because the scriptures teach them, not because Elder Bumfuzzle from the Cross-Eyed Goose Association believed it. We may appreciate that good Elder for instructing us in the truth and pay him double honor for his labors (I Timothy 5:17) but we should believe the truth because we see it in God’s word, irrespective of who may have brought it to our attention.

      EZRA: I much appreciate your labor,

      TETH: Thank you for that encouragement. It has brightened my morning considerably.

      May God bless our studies and understanding of his word,
      TETH

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    3. Thank you for this quick and 'berean' like answer.

      I can agree with much that you say.
      But in an attempt to understand some more of the reasoning, thinking, interpreting and relating to Biblical truth, it can and may be helpful to read of certain brothers in the faith. Whether they are Reformed, Baptist, Or Primitive, it is indeed our duty to be discernful, like the bereans. That said, there's much Biblical truth to be find in many of those forementioned theological positions, is my experience. Just as there is in your blog, which all helps to built u people in the faith.

      I hope I did not give the impression that I see this as the substitute or replacement of Reading Scripture, because that is clearly not the case.

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    4. ANON: Thank you for this quick and 'berean' like answer.

      TETH: You’re welcome. Thanks for stirring up the spiritual mind this morning.

      ANON: I can agree with much that you say. But in an attempt to understand some more of the reasoning, thinking, interpreting and relating to Biblical truth, it can and may be helpful to read of certain brothers in the faith.

      TETH: I agree with that. If this were not true then preaching could not be beneficial.

      ANON: Whether they are Reformed, Baptist, Or Primitive, it is indeed our duty to be discernful, like the bereans. That said, there's much Biblical truth to be find in many of those forementioned theological positions, is my experience

      TETH: That’s right. I’ve found many things with which I agree taught by those of other denominations.

      ANON: Just as there is in your blog, which all helps to built u people in the faith.

      TETH: I agree. The thing I try to emphasize, however, is that “search the scriptures” piece and the fact that we should believe something someone says only to the degree that we find them restating what the bible already teaches. We are FAR too prone to begin exalting men above the word of God and we should be ever on guard against that unprofitable tendency.

      ANON: I hope I did not give the impression that I see this as the substitute or replacement of Reading Scripture, because that is clearly not the case.

      TETH: No worries. I didn’t get that impression from your remarks at all. I believe we are in agreement on the matter. The teaching and writings of men can be good and profitable, but only to the extent that it is reiterating the teaching of the word of God, and we should only believe those teachings to the extent that we see them taught in the word of God. Good teachers merely affirm what God has ALREADY said. ☺

      God bless,
      TETH

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  4. Hey teth. Can you give me your commentary on the fall away verses in hebrews 6 & 10? Also, your commentary on baptismal regeneration?

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    1. UNKNOWN: Hey teth. Can you give me your commentary on the fall away verses in hebrews 6 & 10?

      TETH: I'm headed out on vacation shortly. I believe the following article by Elder Cayce is a good resource where Hebrews 6 is concerned. I've referred others to it before.

      https://www.primitivebaptist.net/Articles/Eternal_Security/Cayce_Hebrews_6.htm

      TETH: Where Hebrews 10 is concerned: who shall the Lord Judge - the non-elect or "his people"? (Hebrews 10:30) If he's judging "his people" and there is no condemnation for such people (Romans 8:1), it follows that this is speaking of a temporal judgement as a result of sin, not an eternal one.

      UNKNOWN: Also, your commentary on baptismal regeneration?

      TETH: I deference to my vacation... my commentary on baptismal regeneration is simply "there's no such thing as baptismal regeneration taught in the bible."

      Forgive my brevity,
      TETH

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  5. Replies
    1. Been busy with my wife, my family, fishing with my boy, serving the church, and working a full time job. I've found it hard to do much blogging of late. I'm in a bottleneck, perhaps things will widen up for me in the future.

      God bless,
      TETH

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  6. Hi TETH, thank you for your hard work in so many areas of focus in rightly dividing scripture. From my readings and understanding, God's choice of saving you proceeds faith, which I fully understand and agree with. God's elect were predestined before the begging of time. According to this should it not be so that we are also justified by Christ alone whether we have faith in him or not? I was wondering if you could walk through Romans 3:21-26. I have looked through many translations and it seems to be that specifically our faith is what justifies us. (There are a couple translations that talk about it not being OUR faith but JESUS' faith that does, but it is not always interpreted that way throughout the text even in the same translation). Is this talking about faith we might receive after we die then? Just needing some help in your understanding of these verses as they seem contrary to some things you are talking about. Thank you!

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    1. Our exercise of God-given faith does not justify us. Only the shed blood of Jesus Christ can justify someone. But faith is the mechanism (the ears to hear) whereby a regenerate child of God (and extant, vital beneficiary of the covenant) may come to know, enjoy, and enter into the rest and comfort that attends a proper understanding of the pre-existing truth of justification. I have often stated that "faith is the experimental dimension of our justification." It doesn't create our state of justification before God, it reveals our state of justification before God to us. Many people struggle with this distinction but I believe there is a great deal of understanding opened up to those who come to this conclusion where the role of faith in the life of a child of God is concerned and where the absolute efficacy of the finished work of Christ is concerned.

      God bless,
      TETH

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  7. Replies
    1. You can follow me on Twitter (@theearstohear). I post new blog content there when it is available. God bless, TETH

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  8. Kindly go the KERCHLOW CHRONICLES ON FACEBOOK and scroll down to the article that is posted under the heading of "BASTARD BELIEVERS". You may find it a good read!

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  9. TETH: Why do you say that Absolute Predestination of All Things (APOAT)is a form of Christian Irrationalism in that it posits a God who is undeniably the immediate author of sin? Please explain

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    1. SS: Why do you say that Absolute Predestination of All Things (APOAT)is a form of Christian Irrationalism in that it posits a God who is undeniably the immediate author of sin? Please explain

      TETH: It’s a good question. Consider the following…

      1. God is said to be the author of eternal salvation (Hebrews 5:9).

      2. This authorship involves his predestinating and ordaining of the events of our eternal salvation (Ephesians 1:4-6, Romans 8:29-30, John 10:28).

      3. The APOAT insists that the things which God has predestined extends not only to the works of our eternal salvation, but to absolutely ALL things which do come to pass, including the commission of sin.

      4. If the ordination (or predestination) of sin comes to pass by precisely the same mechanism as the ordination of salvation, then God is indisputably the author of sin, because he is said to be the author of salvation which came to pass under the same mechanism.

      5. This violates the holiness of God and the principle of “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” (I John 1:5) because the authorship of sin would indisputably be an act of darkness.

      6. The common response to this unavoidable observation, is for APOAT adherents to simply say, “This does not make God the author of sin.” But the conclusion is utterly unavoidable when one considers the aforementioned precepts they affirm. Stated plainly, simply saying “God is not the author of sin” is insufficient to overturn the things they’ve already affirmed. Many will resort to “antinomy”, “mystery”, or “paradox” as an ersatz explanation for the dilemma, but this is no rational explanation of the evident contradiction whatsoever.

      It is for this reason that I refer to APOAT as a form of Christian Irrationalism. It is also why I believe that we must have a more refined and nuanced handling of the matters of divine decrees, ordination, and predestination that does not violate I John 1:5 and which recognizes that the events of history are a combination of things that God has done alongside things that God has longsuffered his creation to do in rebellion against him under his permissive dominion. Apart from recognizing that God longsuffers sin to transpire, but does not directly, actively, and causatively force creatures to sin, we end up with assertions that make God the author of sin, and in so doing, destroy the distinction between good and evil.

      All that said, the matter of divine decrees and ordination is one of the most difficult topics to handle correctly without stepping on a theological landmine. I believe that if most Christians took a great deal more care in their efforts to speak on the subject, and were more introspective about the ramifications of the assertions they make on the matter, we’d find the dialog on predestination far less contentious than they tend to be ,and we’d all develop a more scriptural understanding and a mode of expression in the end.

      May God bless our studies and understanding of his word,
      TETH

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  10. J is for justification.

    According to Galatians 2:16 and Romans 3:20 did Paul and others believe in Jesus Christ so that they might be justified in the sight of God by the faith of Christ?

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    1. HENRY BARRICK: According to Galatians 2:16 and Romans 3:20, did Paul and others believe in Jesus Christ so that they might be justified in the sight of God by the faith of Christ?

      TETH: Let’s look at those passages…

      “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” (Galatians 2:16)

      TETH: It is Christ’s faith (or faithfulness one might say) in fulfilling his covenant obligations that justifies us. Our believing this fact only reconciles our understanding to this preexisting truth. Our faith is not participatory IN our justification, but is evidentiary OF our justification. It is the evidence of things not seen, namely the justification of God’s elect family by either covenant or cross or both.

      “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” (Romans 3:20)

      TETH: This verse affirms that nothing we do in our efforts to keep the law is instrumental in justifying us before God. Paul goes on to state…

      “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:” (Romans 3:22)

      TETH: This affirms that the righteousness of God (our justification) is based on what Christ has done, and those for whom it was done are evidenced by their belief therein.

      TETH: Some of the older writers liked to say “faith does not create” and I believe that is an important observation. Faith does not create or initiate a state of justification through ratification or effectuation or any other such mechanism. Faith is that which embraces the preexisting truth, by cross or covenant, of man’s justification by what God has covenanted to do.

      God bless,
      TETH

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  11. I would challenge you to take a closer look at Romans 3:20...
    Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

    Q: Where will Law keeping not make one justified?
    A:"in His sight"(God's)

    Now, with that in mind, lets compare the almost identical language and sentence structure of Galatians 2:16...

    Side by side...
    Romans 3:20...by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight...
    Galatians 2:16a...a man is not justified by the works of the law...
    Galatians 2:16b...by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified...

    Again, in Romans 3:20 it is clearly stated that justification in the sight of God is under consideration. It is also most plain that Paul has the same idea under consideration in the Galatian 2:16.

    The reality made known is this...
    Paul and others believed in Jesus Christ, that they might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified in the sight of God.

    Do you see this brother? The contrast Paul is making is between justification in the sight of God by works and justification in the sight of God by the faith of Christ.

    Paul and others believed in Jesus Christ so that they might be justified in the sight of God by the faith of Christ.

    Believing in Jesus Christ is an
    evidence of election but not an
    evidence of justification.

    You used this phrase...
    "justification of God’s elect family by either covenant or cross or both."

    If justification by cross you mean the grounds of justification you are biblical per Romans 4:25

    But not the imputation of it per Romans 4:24 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead

    If by justification by covenant you mean God determined beforehand who He would justify, you are biblical per Romans 8:30 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.
    But just as God does not glorify those that are not justified, God does not justify those that are not called.







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    1. TETH ANSWER 101

      HENRY BARRICK: I would challenge you to take a closer look at Romans 3:20... “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” Q: Where will Law keeping not make one justified?
      A:" in His sight"(God's)

      TETH: That is correct. The Judaizing notions of works-based religion believed that their own works would justify them before God. In contrast, the grace of Christ teaches that the work of Christ justifies us before God, and it is by faith that we embrace this pre-existing truth in our experience. Christ’s work is bedrock justification by the blood and grace of Christ (Deuteronomy 32:4, Romans 3:24, 5:9, Titus 3:7).

      HENRY BARRICK: Now, with that in mind, let’s compare the almost identical language and sentence structure of Galatians 2:16... Side by side...

      Romans 3:20...by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight...
      Galatians 2:16a...a man is not justified by the works of the law...
      Galatians 2:16b...by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified...

      HENRY BARRICK: Again, in Romans 3:20 it is clearly stated that justification in the sight of God is under consideration.

      TETH: I agree. Paul is speaking of eternal justification before the throne of divine judgment.

      HENRY BARRICK: It is also most plain that Paul has the same idea under consideration in the Galatian 2:16.

      TETH: That is true. He is speaking of eternal justification before the bar of divine justice based on either man’s work or Christ’s work. It’s important to note, however, that our belief regarding this arrangement is our experience of this preexisting truth. It does not determine, ratify, or effectuate Christ’s work, but rather is an evidentiary fruit of Christ’s work whereby we may receive it in our understanding.

      HENRY BARRICK: The reality made known is this... Paul and others believed in Jesus Christ, that they might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified in the sight of God.

      TETH: Yes. They believed that the work of Jesus Christ (the faith OF Christ) justified them before God, not their own works. Their believing this truth of justification before God by Christ made it a present reality in their conscience and understanding so that they could enter into the joy and rest that is only found therein. Ask yourself this – What did they believe, that they were justified by Christ’s finished work alone, or they were justified by Christ’s work PLUS their act of believing it? If the latter, then Christ’s work of justification was not a finished work, merely a potential one that was waiting upon a synergistic exercise of faith on the part of regenerate men in order to find its saving efficacy.

      TETH: The problem raised by your definition of “justification by faith” is that it denies the finished work of Christ in justifying his people at Calvary. Brother, justification is THE declaration of the gospel. It is what faith believes – that we ARE JUSTIFIED by Christ. The gospel is “liberty to the captives.” It is not an offer of potential liberty provided one believes it. A declaration of extant liberty is not depended upon one’s belief for that liberty to be in effect. However, for one to have a personal experience of that truth, for one to rejoice in it, for one to find rest in that declaration, one must believe it and act in accordance with it. So, one must maintain the biblical distinction between Christ’s work wherein we were justified before God, and our receipt of that truth by faith wherein that justification before God becomes a cognitive reality to us in our experience. The former is bedrock justification, the latter justification by faith.

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    2. TETH ANSWER 102

      HENRY BARRICK: Do you see this brother? The contrast Paul is making is between justification in the sight of God by works and justification in the sight of God by the faith of Christ.

      TETH: Yes. The faith “OF” Christ. That’s Christ’s work, not our belief thereof. Our faith is merely the ears to hear, the vital capacity given us in regeneration whereby we may receive and believe that pre-existing truth.

      TETH: Ask yourself this – were you justified by the blood of Christ at Calvary, or was Christ’s work of justification waiting upon your approval by faith in order to find its saving and justifying efficacy? To affirm the latter is an incredibly blasphemous statement, though admittedly a very popular one in Christendom. It is evidence of how many Christians are still dragging around a great deal of Arminian baggage in their theology, and how they cry “it is finished” when the work of justification is by no means finished under such an arrangement.

      HENRY BARRICK: Paul and others believed in Jesus Christ so that they might be justified in the sight of God by the faith of Christ.

      TETH: No. They believed in Jesus Christ, and what they believed is that by HIS WORK they were justified in the sight of God. Their believing it was merely a downstream, evidentiary fruit which 1) proved that they were regenerate and of the elect, and 2) made their justification by Christ’s work a cognitive reality to them in their personal experience and understanding. Faith does not effectuate justification.

      TETH: Consider this – do you believe that our EXERCISE of faith in Christ is a monergistic work of God or a synergistic work of God and man? Please answer that directly in your response.

      HENRY BARRICK: Believing in Jesus Christ is an evidence of election but not an evidence of justification.

      TETH: Believing in Christ is both an evidence of election and justification. Indeed, election is covenantal justification, and this fact alone disproves your statement and underscores your coarse approach to the topic of justification, which requires more precision in handling than your system displays.

      HENRY BARRICK: You used this phrase... "justification of God’s elect family by either covenant or cross or both." If justification by cross you mean the grounds of justification you are biblical per Romans 4:25

      TETH: I do not mean that the cross was merely “the grounds” (the foundation) of justification. I mean that the cross WAS our justification. Period. It does not look to OUR faith to determine its justifying efficacy. It IS justification by Christ’s work ALONE. An elect infant dying in the womb who never hears of Christ and never has anything remotely resembling informed evangelical faith in Christ’s work is every bit as justified by Christ’s finished work of justification as the most intelligent, diligent, biblical, faithful, and pious Christian who has ever lived. That’s because it is CHRIST who JUSTIFIES (Romans 8:33-34), and our belief thereof is merely a means of embracing that fact which provides strength, comfort, and rest to a child of God in this lifetime.

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    3. TETH ANSWER 103

      HENRY BARRICK: But not the imputation of it per Romans 4:24 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead

      TETH: Paul is merely using one’s faith as an evidence of their state of justification and of the imputation of Christ’s righteousness to them. Consider this:

      1. Is there a man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity? (Psalm 32:2)

      2. Were the sins of God’s elect imputed to them or were they ever imputed to Christ by covenant? (Isaiah 53:6, II Corinthians 5:19-21)

      TETH: Those are very important, covenantal questions to resolve before we start making assertions regarding imputation or the nature of faith.

      HENRY BARRICK: If by justification by covenant you mean God determined beforehand who He would justify, you are biblical per Romans 8:30.

      TETH: This is certainly true. God’s stated purpose for his people was their justification by the blood of Christ at Calvary. That we were justified in the mind and purpose of God from eternity past is irrefutable. That is covenantal justification.

      TETH: BTW – for clarity’s sake, I’ll point out that I use the phrase “by covenant or cross” to point out a distinction regarding “justification by faith” in the OT versus the NT. OT saints such as Abraham believed in the promise (covenant), whereas NT saints in the gospel dispensation are able to believe on the fulfillment of that promise heralded in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

      HENRY BARRICK: 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.

      TETH: True.

      HENRY BARRICK: But just as God does not glorify those that are not justified, God does not justify those that are not called.

      TETH: The “call” of Romans 8:30 is regeneration, not the gospel call. That is because Romans 8:30 speaks of God’s “call” happening for absolutely ALL of his saints across time. The gospel call has NOT reached all of God’s saints throughout time and thus one cannot assert that all of God’s elect saints have exercised evangelical faith in the explicit NT gospel throughout time. That is an utterly unassailable fact for anyone who has a sober view of the bible’s revelation to us.

      TETH: Perhaps more to the point, God’s calling is based upon his election, which is indisputably justification in the mind and purpose of God. The justifying transaction (Calvary) occurred after the OT saints who knew only of covenant promises, and before the NT saints in the gospel era. So the relationship between justification and the exercise of faith is more complicated than you make it out to be. The bible speaks of covenantal justification, transactional justification, and justification by faith, and the temporal relationship between these three has changed over the course of human history as it relates to the “call” of Romans 8:30.

      TETH: I believe your error lies in defining justification by faith in a way that disregards the bible’s full testimony regarding justification, and in so doing exalts the exercise of evangelical faith to a status that exceeds its nature and purpose in the life of a child of God. To have a proper view of justification requires more nuance and care than the current view of “justification by faith” promoted by the neo-reformed.

      God bless,
      TETH

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