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Thread: The Most Misunderstood Passage in the Bible--Romans 5:12-18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    I have no doubt that Abraham and a the other saints will enjoy both the new birth and the resurrection. In their day they did not see all that was to come but they related to God through their faith.
    Oh no, Abraham saw it and was glad.

    The Old Testament faithful were alive in the spirit watching from above. Paul says, "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses..." Jesus also tells us Abraham waited to see his day, Abraham saw it and was glad (John 8:56). Abraham died, yet was alive in the spirit.

    Not only that, the righteous people who died before Jesus shed his blood, they were the cloud of witnesses, AND, their spirits were made perfect by what Jesus did.

    Paul says about the faithful in the Old Testament times, "These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect." God's grace through faith in Jesus made the spirits of the righteous, those who had died before Jesus, they in the spirit were made perfect together with Paul and the other first Christians (Hebrews 12:23; 11:39-40).
    Oh how I love the Word of God!
    Do not just read the word do it.

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    Over 1000 post club Shasta's Avatar
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    [Jerry Shugart;4986778]Was not Isaac born of the spirit?:

    "But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now"
    (Gal.4:29).

    It was Ishmael (born after the flesh) who persecuted Isaac (born after the Spirit) so it makes no sense to argue that no one was born of the Spirit until after the Cross.
    Paul was using Ishmael and Isaac as types representing those who are naturally born descendants of Abraham (unbelieving Jews) versus those who were spiritual descendants of Abraham according to his faith. Paul says they are LIKE Isaac, that is, comparable to him in some ways.

    …28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of the promise. (Galatians 4:29)

    Isaac was LIKE believers in that he was a child of promise. Abraham heard the word of God, believed, and, as a result, new life miraculously was born.

    29 At that time, however, the son born by the flesh persecuted the son born by the Spirit. It is the same now (Galatians 4:29)

    The phrase that Isaac was the son "born by the Spirit" is speaking of how Sarah's womb was miraculously enabled to bear him at her advanced age. Unlike Mary, Sarah's conceived naturally it was just that she received divine help. But if what you are saying is true and we should take the comparisons literally then it was not about "quickening Sarah's womb" but about some special spiritual way Isaac was born "in the spirit" If this is true then what about Ishmael who was "born after the flesh" Taking both cases the same way we would have to conclude that Ishmael was not conceived with spiritual life but with only the life of the flesh. Yet, according to you, all people are born with spiritual life. If so he would have been too. This goes to show how far you are willing to twist the scriptures to make your pet doctrine work.

    No one can enter the kingdom unless he is born of the spirit and if no one was born that way until the Cross then how do you explain the fact that Abraham will indeed enter the kingdom? All you said is that you have no doubt that Abraham will enjoy the new birth. Why do you not think he enjoyed the new birth while he walked the earth?
    The scripture does not say he did. Abraham's "place of comfort" was initially the alternative to entering the heavenly kingdom which nobody could do until Christ died, was resurrected had made a way into the Holy of Holies by stripping principalities and powers.

    That is why he didn't even understand what Paul wrote here:

    "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned"
    (Ro.5:20).
    You either did not read my exegesis of this verse or did not understand it. The word "because" comes from two Greek words ef (on the basis of which, or because) and ho which is a pronoun standing for another noun in the sentence. Taken together the words mean because of WHOM or because of WHICH. Translators in the West have held that the cause of sin is linked to Adam (because of WHOM) while Eastern theologians since the early centuries have held that it referred to the word death (because of WHICH). In the first case, the connection between Adam and universal sin is made through legal imputation. In the second, the connection is made to death since a lack of fellowship with God leads to our acting apart from the Holy Spirit. All you have done is say all men sinned, or since some people might avoid sin altogether MOST men sin. You have not dealt with the main point of the passage which was to explain WHY ALL men sin.

    According to Paul "all men" died spiritually when they sinned. That means that "all men" were alive spiritually before they died spiritually. And that can onlt mean that all people emerge from the womb spiritually alive. But you say that a person can die spiritually even though he is not alive spiritually, which defies common sense.
    But in your system, without any inherent inclination to sin. it is possible for some to continue in the sinless perfectionism of youth into sinless perfectionism as an adult. Though you say "all sin" there is no reason for that to be within your invented theological system.
    I also asked you:
    [INDENT]What kind of death is referred to in these verses?:
    already answered

    "Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away" (2 Cor.3:6-7).
    I quoted this myself. Evidently you did not bother to read it.

    "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death" (Jas.1:14-15).

    "What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death...For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Ro.6:21,23).
    This is the process that leads men to sin but it does not explain why men are prone to have such desires and inclinations. When Paul tried to be a good Jew in Romans 7 he did ok until he came across a command that said "you shall not covet." Unlike other commands this one dealt with the desires and motives of the heart. The law, being holy, did not cause these desires to come into existence. Rather, the command simply revealed that Paul's desires to be against God's will. Even when Paul understood that he could not stop himself. Though in his ignorance he had not been accountable for his actions, he had already been covetous. The Law, his schoolmaster, simply pointed that out.




    Please refresh my memory. I also said:

    The word "regeneration" is translated the Greek word paliggenesia and that word is the combination of palin and genesis.

    Palin means "joined to verbs of all sorts,it denotes renewal or repetition of the action" (Thayer's Greek English Lexicon).
    [QUOTE]

    Did I not analyze this word in the same way? I just did not leap to preposterous doctrinal conclusions you did and then try to reverse engineer scriptures in the OT to fit it.

    To this you said:

    Here is the primary meaning which he gives for the word: "new birth, reproduction, renewal, re-creation." Please notice the prefix "re" in three of those verses and consider its meaning:

    "re-a prefix, occurring originally in loanwords from Latin, used with the meaning “again” or “again and again” to indicate repetition, or with the meaning “back” or “backward” to indicate withdrawal or backward motion:

    regenerate; refurbish; retype; retrace; revert"
    (Dictionary.com).

    Your ideas are based on a denial that the word "regenerate" is referring to a repetition.
    I believe that converting to Christ involves a RE-birth or being born again. It is a recapitulation of birth in that it is holistic and radical. It is not a repetition in quality. The first birth brought life in the flesh and soul, not spiritual life. It is therefore not about a restoration to some pristine pre-natal condition of spirituality. It introduces an entirely new kind of life. You might say we are restored (at least in our soul and spirit) to a pre-fall state but even that is not completely accurate.
    Now let us look again at this verse:

    "And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel"
    (Mt.29:28).

    The word "regeneration"refers to the "times of restitution" spoken of in the following verse:

    "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began"
    (Acts 3:19-21).

    The Greek word translated "restitution" means "the restoration not only of the true theocracy but also of that more perfect state of (even physical) things which existed before the fall" (Thayer's Greek English Lexicon).

    So from all of this we can understand when the Lord used the Greek word translated "regeneration" he was referring to a "restoration."

    Despite all these facts you continue to deny that the word "regeneration" means a restoration or a repetition of an action.
    I have addressed these scriptures. My point all along was just saying there was no restoration to infantile spirituality. I was not saying there was no restoration of any kind.
    Last edited by Shasta; April 19th, 2017 at 08:48 AM.

  3. #1248
    TOL Legend Jerry Shugart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Abraham's "place of comfort" was initially the alternative to entering the heavenly kingdom which nobody could do until Christ had made a way and stripped principalities and powers.
    In what way is Abraham alive right now? The Lord Jesus said:

    "Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him"
    (Lk.37-38).

    What about Zacharias, was he dead spiritually even though he was filled with the Holy Spirit?:

    "And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people"
    (Lk.1:67-68).

    Are you really willing to argue that even though Zecharias was filled with the Holy Spirit he was dead spiritually?

    Are you really willing to argue that even though Zacharias was righteous before God he was spiritually dead?:

    "There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless"
    (Lk.1:5-6).

    Are you willing to argue that Abraham remained spiritually dead even though his faith was counted for righteousness?:

    "For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Ro.4:3-5).

    Are you willing to argue that those who heard the Lord Jesus' words and believed them and received eternal life (Jn.5:24) remained spiritually dead even though He said this?:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life" (Jn.6:63).

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    The first birth brought life in the flesh and soul, not spiritual life.
    When we examine the book of Job we can see that people are created spiritually alive. Elihu told Job this about how he was made:

    "The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life" (Job.33:4).

    Job certainly understood that it is the spirit of God which was breathed into him by the Almighty:

    "As God liveth, who hath taken away my judgment; and the Almighty, who hath vexed my soul; All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils"
    (Job.27:3).

    That is referring to the same spiritual life which was breathed into the nostrils of Adam when he was created:

    "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul"
    (Gen.2:7).

    Even though the spirit of God gives men life and the spirit of God makes them you continue to argue that all of Adam's descendants emerge from the womb spiritually dead!

    Earlier I quoted this verse to explain why men sin and it is not because of anything involving Adam:

    "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death" (Jas.1:14-15).

    To this you said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    This is the process that leads men to sin but it does not explain why men are prone to have such desires and inclinations.
    Did not the Lord Jesus Himself suffer being tempted?:

    "Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted"
    (Heb.2:17-18).

    To be tempted has nothing to do with a person being dead spiritually because the Lord Jesus was also tempted. The difference between Him and all men is that all men, sooner or later, by their own free will, decide to go their own way and not the way of God. The Lord Jesus came to the earth to do the will of the Father.

    If the act of sinning can only be explained by your idea that it is because Adam's sinful nature has been imputed to all of his descendants then how do you explain the fact that both Adam and Eve sinned according to their free will?

    As it says at Hebrews 2:17 the Lord Jesus was made like us "in all things." But you argue that He was made spiritually alive but we are made spiritually dead!

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    Over 1000 post club Shasta's Avatar
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    [=Jerry Shugart;4989987]In what way is Abraham alive right now? The Lord Jesus said:

    "Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him"
    (Lk.37-38).
    If you look at the context of this event (Mark 12:26-27) you will see that Jesus is talking to the Sadducees who believed people cease to exist with the termination of their physical life. In His debate with them Jesus said the fact that the scripture said, "I AM the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob" (rather than "I WAS...") showed that Abraham was still a living sentient being. Since Jesus was not debating over whether deceased humans had the eternal life of God (which would have been beyond them) but whether they were still sentient your point is moot. Going any farther than this is unsupported speculation. The only reason you try to make the passage mean more is so you can work your doctrine in between the lines of the text. In your intense desire to establish this pet doctrine your have resorted to eisegesis which makes an objective reading of any passage impossible.

    What about Zacharias, was he dead spiritually even though he was filled with the Holy Spirit?:

    "And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people"
    (Lk.1:67-68).

    Are you really willing to argue that even though Zecharias was filled with the Holy Spirit he was dead spiritually?

    Are you really willing to argue that even though Zacharias was righteous before God he was spiritually dead?:

    "There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless"
    (Lk.1:5-6).
    Christ made the new life available through His death and resurrection. If we could have been spiritually born without this then He need not have suffered. The atonement and the cleansing it brought to the soul made it possible for the Holy Spirit to be set back into union with the human spirit ("set back" meaning back to the condition it was in the garden not in our infancy).

    Since the beginning of time, certain people have been filled with the Spirit for particular times and specific purposes. If the Bible can be taken as an exhaustive account then such "filling" did not happen very often. There were also differences between this experience and what took place after the resurrection. In the OT the Spirit might empower a person to do something miraculous without converting their character. Samson was periodically filled with the Spirit but that experience brought no lasting moral change in his character. At one point, Saul in his lapsed state prophesied but that experience not change him nor did it prevent him from later consulting the witch at Endor.

    You do not have to accept my word about this. Jesus said that the relationship his disciples had with the Holy Spirit changed after the Resurrection (John 14:17). Initially the Spirit was with them in the same way He was with people under the Old Covenant. Later the disciples received the Spirit in a deeper more permanent way (John 20:22).

    If the Old Covenant way of relating to the Spirit had been what Jesus wanted He would not have needed to wait. He could have breathed into them when they were first called. It would have better prepared them to understand His words and to go through temptation. The change was a direct result of His death and resurrection.

    The promise of the New Birth was prophesied to be fulfilled during the Messiah's ministry (Ezekiel 11:19, Jer 31:33) Jesus could not have rebuked Nicodemus for not understanding this if it had not been written in the scriptures. Since this was a prophecy of the future no could experience it before that time. For this reason no one in the OT could have been born again since the promise was for a future time when Christ would do the work necessary to make it possible. In the same way, sins could not be cleansed until Christ actually came and did the work of the atonement (Isaiah 53:5,Hebrews 11:13).

    Are you willing to argue that Abraham remained spiritually dead even though his faith was counted for righteousness?:

    "For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Ro.4:3-5).
    People are righteous if they obey God. The reason we need a mediator is that none of us is righteous enough to relate to a perfectly Holy Being. This is why the High Priest's entrance into the Holy of Holies had to be attended with blood .

    Are you willing to argue that those who heard the Lord Jesus' words and believed them and received eternal life (Jn.5:24) remained spiritually dead even though He said this?:
    People had the promise of eternal life before Jesus had actually bought it for us through His sacrifice.

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life" (Jn.6:63).
    They had been given a promise in the OT. Realizing that promise was a result of the NT

    When we examine the book of Job we can see that people are created spiritually alive. Elihu told Job this about how he was made:

    "The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life" (Job.33:4).

    Job certainly understood that it is the spirit of God which was breathed into him by the Almighty:

    "As God liveth, who hath taken away my judgment; and the Almighty, who hath vexed my soul; All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils"
    (Job.27:3).

    That is referring to the same spiritual life which was breathed into the nostrils of Adam when he was created:

    "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul"
    (Gen.2:7).

    Even though the spirit of God gives men life and the spirit of God makes them you continue to argue that all of Adam's descendants emerge from the womb spiritually dead!
    …21 All flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds and cattle and beasts and every swarming thing that swarms upon the earth, and all mankind; 22of all that was on the dry land, all in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, died (Genesis 7:21-22).

    So here the "breath of the Spirit of life" is in animals. Are you going to insist on your rigid definition of what is meant by "the breath (or the Spirit) of God?"

    Earlier I quoted this verse to explain why men sin and it is not because of anything involving Adam:


    "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death" (Jas.1:14-15).
    This explains why individual people sin. It does not explain why all men inevitably end up being sinners. Romans 5:11-13 and the surrounding passage is intended to presented as an explanation as to why sin is universal and the causitive factors which relate back to Adam. Paul need not have brought up Adam at all nor linked our sin so closely unless it were important to his point. You chop the "all men sin" part out of the passage as if it were disembodied from the rest.

    Did not the Lord Jesus Himself suffer being tempted?:

    "Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted"
    (Heb.2:17-18).

    To be tempted has nothing to do with a person being dead spiritually because the Lord Jesus was also tempted. The difference between Him and all men is that all men, sooner or later, by their own free will, decide to go their own way and not the way of God. The Lord Jesus came to the earth to do the will of the Father.
    Even with a perfect nature, rational beings can sin. They simply have no particular inclination to. The Devil and his angels sinned. So did Adam and Eve. Rational creatures have a choice. However, without the influence of the Spirit, however, people will be drawn inevitably into serving the desires of the flesh and mind.

    If the act of sinning can only be explained by your idea that it is because Adam's sinful nature has been imputed to all of his descendants then how do you explain the fact that both Adam and Eve sinned according to their free will?
    I have never said I believed in the doctrine of imputation. In fact, I have disputed that point with others

    As it says at Hebrews 2:17 the Lord Jesus was made like us "in all things." But you argue that He was made spiritually alive but we are made spiritually dead!
    We are not yet like Christ in every respect. I would certainly not agree that in becoming like us Christ became a sinner. He was alive Spiritually because He was not a son of Adam but conceived by the Holy Spirit.

    15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who was tempted in every way that we are, yet was without sin (Hebrews 4:15)

    "Yet without sin" is a big caveat, don't you think? Tell me, are you without sin, Jerry? If not then Christ was not made like you.
    Last edited by Shasta; April 19th, 2017 at 12:34 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    People had the promise of eternal life before Jesus had actually bought it for us through His sacrifice.
    Are you really asserting that no one received eternal life until after the Cross? Evidently you are not aware of the Lord's words here:

    "Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life" (Jn.5:24).

    In this verse the Greek word translated "believes" and the Greek word translated "has" are both in the "present" tense.

    In The Blue Letter Bible we read the following meaning of the present tense:

    "The present tense represents a simple statement of fact or reality viewed as occurring in actual time. In most cases this corresponds directly with the English present tense."

    Therefore, John 5:24 is saying that those who were believing at the time the Lord Jesus spoke those words had already received eternal life. That is what is meant as something being "viewed as occurring in actual time."

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Christ made the new life available through His death and resurrection.
    So the eternal life which those who believed the Lord's words received when He walked the earth was not a new life?

    Earlier I quoted this verse to prove that those who believed the Lord Jesus received spiritual life:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life" (Jn.6:63).

    To this you said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    They had been given a promise in the OT. Realizing that promise was a result of the NT
    Those who heard and believed His words received eternal life they believed. And they were made alive by the Spirit. The promise was realized at the time when a person believed His words. The Greek words translated "speak" and "they are" and "they are" are all in the "present" tense. The believers received spiritual life at the moment when they believed. And that completely destroys your idea that no one received spiritual life until after the Cross.

    Earlier I said this:

    Are you willing to argue that Abraham remained spiritually dead even though his faith was counted for righteousness?:

    "For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Ro.4:3-5).

    To this you said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    People are righteous if they obey God.
    You obviously no not understand that the righteousness of God is imputed to all those who believe, not obey. Here is what Paul said about Abraham:

    "He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification"
    (Ro.4:20-25).

    Despite these facts you continue to argue that even though even though Abraham was righteous in the eyes of God he remained spiritually alive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Unlike Jerry's "theoretical speculations about certain men not leaving their first estate of spirituality, Paul, in accordance with all NT writers says that we are an entire race of sinners, none excepted.
    the Scriptures say that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. I have never denied that.

    But no one becomes a sinner until he sins and no one dies spiritually until he sins.

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    [Jerry Shugart;4990222]Are you really asserting that no one received eternal life until after the Cross? Evidently you are not aware of the Lord's words here:

    "Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life" (Jn.5:24).
    Jesus could grant eternal life in the world to come to anyone because He had the authority to do so (John 6:37).

    In this verse the Greek word translated "believes" and the Greek word translated "has" are both in the "present" tense.

    In The Blue Letter Bible we read the following meaning of the present tense:

    "The present tense represents a simple statement of fact or reality viewed as occurring in actual time. In most cases this corresponds directly with the English present tense."

    Therefore, John 5:24 is saying that those who were believing at the time the Lord Jesus spoke those words had already received eternal life. That is what is meant as something being "viewed as occurring in actual time."
    The fact that "believes" is in the present tense indicates that faith must be ongoing. If Jesus had wanted to say that a single act of faith at some point in ones life was enough to save them forever He could have easily expressed it by using the aorist tense of the verb "believes." By using the present tense He reveals that eternal life is conditioned on ongoing faith which is the same thing as saying we must continue to abide in Him.

    Now that the context and grammar of the passage overall is mostly understood, we shall turn to the grammatical point of contention: ὁ πιστεύων. First, let's answer a couple of initial questions for clarification.

    Since the participle is articular, it must be either adjectival or substantival (this is somewhat of a false dichotomy as the substantival use of the participle is actually a subset of the adjectival use, and the meaning and translation is not affected in this context). Does the participle agree with a substantive in person, case, and number? Yes - if we count the adjective. But it is grammatically preferable to say that ὁ πιστεύων is a nominative masculine singular present active participle which is modified by the adjective πᾶς (which agrees with it). Thus the use of ὁ πιστεύων would be considered substantival.

    Either way, this construction (πᾶς ὁ πιστεύων) should be translated "everyone who believes," "every believing one/person," or "everyone believing." Note that this same phrase occurs in v. 15 and thus the syntactical implications of v. 16 are true also in its preceding context.

    Daniel Wallace points out:

    The idea seems to be both gnomic and continual: "everyone who continually believes." This is not due to the present tense only, but to the use of the present participle of πιστεύω, especially in soteriological contexts in the NT (Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, pp. 620-621).

    https://hermeneutics.stackexchange.c...erlasting-life
    So the eternal life which those who believed the Lord's words received when He walked the earth was not a new life?
    The problem with your doctrine is that you have not acknowledged that Jesus' work had anything to do with the new birth. According to you people have always been born in the Spirit. You cannot give any scriptures to prove this so you rely on your intuitive sense of what must have been. However, the salvation of souls recapitulates the death, burial and resurrection of Christ (Romans 6:3-5). This is not just a coincidence. It is BECAUSE of Christ that we can (through identification with Him) die to the old mind, be buried with him in baptism and be raised to walk in newness of life. The life we have then is not merely the old life refurbished but it is something entirely new.

    Do you think the outpouring of the Holy Spirit was more of the same kind of thing God had done before? No, it had never happened before. Before that time, only a very few people were been visited by the Holy Spirit and, even then, it was never to bring about a new birth. The new birth did not, could not, exist before Jesus gave his life. It was prophesied in such scriptures as Ezekiel 36:25-27 but something that is prophesied comes to pass later in history not at the time it is written.

    It may not seem fair to you that such devout men as Abraham did not receive the infilling of the Spirit while they lived but it was not in God's timing. Does God deal with people in one dispensation the same way He does in every other? Besides, if you think Abraham was born of the Spirit or filled with the Spirit where does the scripture say so. John the Baptist received the prophetic anointing of the Spirit even while he was in his mother's womb. This would make him the "greatest among men born of women" that is, among men born according to natural birth. However "the least in the Kingdom" would be greater than he because they would be born of the Spirit. Also, note that John said one of the Messiah's unique roles would be "baptizing in the Holy Spirit" No one before Jesus was able to do this.

    Earlier I said this:

    Are you willing to argue that Abraham remained spiritually dead even though his faith was counted for righteousness?:

    "For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Ro.4:3-5).

    To this you said:

    You obviously no not understand that the righteousness of God is imputed to all those who believe, not obey. Here is what Paul said about Abraham:

    "He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification"
    (Ro.4:20-25).

    Despite these facts you continue to argue that even though even though Abraham was righteous in the eyes of God he remained spiritually alive.
    [/QUOTE]

    You apparently feel that any righteous person in history should be born again but it is not up to us to conform our doctrines to the way we think things SHOULD be. God is just but He accomplishes his work in stages called dispensations. The result is that He cannot give to prior generations the same blessings He gives to later ones. If you have complaints about how God manages His dispensations, I suggest you take it up with Him rather than try and import new wine into the old wine skins. As for me, I am just trying to read what the word says. You are the one with the vested interest in being a teacher and gaining a following for your idiosyncratic and minority opinions.

    Yes, Abraham believed and God counted it as righteousness but, as James adds, his faith was followed by corresponding obedience. Faith and obedience go hand-in-hand. Tertullian said God saw Abraham "had a mind" to follow up his faith with action.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Shugart View Post
    the Scriptures say that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. I have never denied that.

    But no one becomes a sinner until he sins and no one dies spiritually until he sins.
    How do you know that someone born sinless and full of spiritual life might not choose to continue in that state? I do not see any necessity in your system that ALL men must become sinners. If there is nothing that connects the human race in making them vulnerable or liable to sin then you must allow that some, raised in a proper environment, might be sinless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    How do you know that someone born sinless and full of spiritual life might not choose to continue in that state? I do not see any necessity in your system that ALL men must become sinners. If there is nothing that connects the human race in making them vulnerable or liable to sin then you must allow that some, raised in a proper environment, might be sinless.
    Shasta,

    This has been discussed in a loop. No one can "choose" the good when past the age of accountability but ONE.

    Isaiah has a verse on this matter. Is. 7:15 ... It all goes back to Jesus response where He says... Luke 18:19

    To be precise...

    John 8:7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”

    There has only ever been, or ever will be ONE that has the right to cast a stone. And... He forgave the woman on the spot... His next words are abused as much as James words on Faith and Works.

    Jesus is our Works Shasta. I don't believe Adams sin is imputed to us because we supply that in abundance on our own, free accord. I do however believe in the imputation of Christ's righteousness... because scripture leaves no room to question the matter.

    You would have to erase the word propitiation from scripture to even begin to touch that we put on Christ like a garment.

    We are dead to the Law and thus iniquity is not accounted to us... but we are perpetually in need of Jesus and carnally so as well.
    Open (Beyond Time ...1 Ki. 8:27) Relational to us within Time (John 1:1)
    Dispensational (2 Ti. 2:15)
    It's All About Jesus and He's the theology (John 5:39f)
    Biblical (2 Ti. 3:16)
    Zionist (Rm. 11:25-36)
    There is only one Commentary!
    (1 John 2:27; Rm. 8:9; Php. 1:19; Mt. 23:8)

    Salvation is Free (Eph. 2:8f) !!! It depends on his strength, not mine!!! (2 Co. 12:9)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Jesus could grant eternal life in the world to come to anyone because He had the authority to do so (John 6:37).
    That contradicts what you said earlier:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    People had the promise of eternal life before Jesus had actually bought it for us through His sacrifice.
    You just make up your theology as you go along. One minute no one had eternal life until after the Cross and the next minute they did. You don't know if you are coming or going.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    The fact that "believes" is in the present tense indicates that faith must be ongoing. If Jesus had wanted to say that a single act of faith at some point in ones life was enough to save them forever He could have easily expressed it by using the aorist tense of the verb "believes." By using the present tense He reveals that faith must be ongoing.
    If the believing must continue into the future then the eternal life would not be realized until the future. However, once a person believes he has eternal life and the Lord Jesus say that to whom He gives eternal life shall never perish (Jn.10:28). But you say that they can.

    According to the Greek experts the Greek present tense can be in regard to a continuous action beginning in the past and continuing into the present time:

    "The durative (linear or progressive) in the present stem: the action is represented as durative (in progress) and either as timeless or as taking place in present time (including, of course, duration on one side or the other of the present moment" (Blass & DeBrunner, A Greek Grammar of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, p. 166.)

    "A Present Tense form is called durative when the context conveys an action that began in the past and continues into the present"
    (Young, Intermediate Greek, p.111-112)

    The Lord was not telling anyone that they must continue to hear Him speaking in the distant future in order to have eternal life. Instead, those who were believing Him as He spoke His words were at that moment passed from death unto life and will not come into judgment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    The new birth did not, could not, exist before Jesus gave his life.
    These words of the Lord Jesus makes it plain that believers received spiritual life before the Cross:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life"
    (Jn.6:63).

    Those who heard and believed His words received eternal life the moment when they believed. And they were made alive by the Spirit. The promise was realized at the time when a person believed His words. The Greek words translated "speak" and "they are" and "they are" are all in the "present" tense. The believers received spiritual life at the moment when they believed. And that completely destroys your idea that no one received spiritual life until after the Cross.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    It may not seem fair to you that such devout men as Abraham did not receive the infilling of the Spirit while they lived but it was not in God's timing.
    The subject is not the infilling of the Spirit but the quickening power of the Spirit. Of course Abraham was spiritually alive when he believed God because he received the imputed righteousness of God then. It is IMPOSSIBLE that he would be acceptable to God at a time when he was spiritually dead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Yes, Abraham believed and God counted it as righteousness but, as James adds, his faith was followed by corresponding obedience. Faith and obedience go hand-in-hand. Tertullian said God saw Abraham "had a mind" to follow up his faith with action.
    Yes, but James makes it plain that being born of God comes first and then obedience follows:

    "He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created" (Jas.1:18).

    We can also see that men were being born of God prior to the Cross:

    "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God"
    (Jn.1:12-13).

    Are you willing to argue that being born of the Spirit is not the same thing as being born of God?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    How do you know that someone born sinless and full of spiritual life might not choose to continue in that state? I do not see any necessity in your system that ALL men must become sinners. If there is nothing that connects the human race in making them vulnerable or liable to sin then you must allow that some, raised in a proper environment, might be sinless.
    We do know that some were considered righteous by God. Perhaps "falling short of the glory of God" would be a better measure. But even the righteous need fail but once, so it isn't as if we sin continually as so many claim.

    Ezekiel 14:20 Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord God, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.

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    [QUOTE=Jerry Shugart;4991055]That contradicts what you said earlier:

    There are different aspects to eternal life, as I said before. One is the final entrance into eternal life which occurs at the end of life. Jesus granted the thief on the cross entrance by a promise. There is also an experiential aspect of eternal life which people who believe in Christ receive. This life comes to our inner man through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (John 17:3). This relational connection to God (knowing Him experientially) is also called "eternal life" (John 17:3)as well a enjoying everlasting life with Him in the hereafter.


    The new birth is our introduction into this relational experience of eternal life. However much you feel it was not fair to saints in previous generations, God had simply not done the necessary work to give it to them until the redemptive work of Christ was accomplished. It had been foretold in prophecy in scriptures like Ezekiel 36:26 but it did not actually take place until John 20:22 and Acts 2. If EVERY believer since the beginning had always been indwelled by the Holy Spirit in this way the prophecy would have been absolutely meaningless. When speaking to Nicodemus about the new birth Jesus rebuked him for not being aware of the new birth. He could not have done so unless there were some way of knowing about it...and there was - in the prophecies

    In that same conversation Jesus told him the following:

    14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life (John 17:3)

    These remarks of Jesus show that (1) people would not have eternal life UNTIL He would go to the cross and (2) though He called people to believe that faith would not bring relational eternal life until He had made atonement for us. To make the Tabernacle a fit dwelling place for the Holy Spirit, blood first had to be spilled. In the same way, although John the Baptist said Jesus would Baptize in the Holy Spirit, He did not do so until after He died and was raised again from the dead. Salvation itself is, as I said before, a recapitulation of the death burial and resurrection of Jesus. This is also not a coincidence His work was necessary to make the new birth possible.

    You just make up your theology as you go along. One minute no one had eternal life until after the Cross and the next minute they did. You don't know if you are coming or going.
    Well I hope I explained my view more completely in this post. Speaking of make-shift theology does the Church you attend believe all your claims?

    If the believing must continue into the future then the eternal life would not be realized until the future. However, once a person believes he has eternal life and the Lord Jesus say that to whom He gives eternal life shall never perish (Jn.10:28). But you say that they can.
    The idea that we must continue in the faith until the end can be seen in such scriptures as this:

    …6 God “will repay each one according to his deeds.” 7 To those who by perseverance in doing good seek glory, honor, and immortality, He will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow wickedness, there will be wrath and anger.…(Romans 2:6-8)

    When Paul says "doing good" are we to assume he means doing "works of the Law" That is the default straw man introduced whenever God says He expects us to obey but the Bible says Jesus went about "doing good." Jesus Himself said He did 'what He saw the Father doing." He followed the Spirit's guidance (i.e., He submitted Himself) That is all we are expected to do. The reward for a life of walking with God is not rulership over cities" but eternal life. So what of the eternal life we enjoy now which Jesus said was "knowing the Father?" Obviously there is an immediate and future aspect of eternal life and having the former does not guarantee the latter if one develops an evil unbelieving heart and ends of rejecting the truth.

    A
    ccording to the Greek experts the Greek present tense can be in regard to a continuous action beginning in the past and continuing into the present time:

    "The durative (linear or progressive) in the present stem: the action is represented as durative (in progress) and either as timeless or as taking place in present time (including, of course, duration on one side or the other of the present moment" (Blass & DeBrunner, A Greek Grammar of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, p. 166.)

    "A Present Tense form is called durative when the context conveys an action that began in the past and continues into the present"
    (Young, Intermediate Greek, p.111-112)

    Greek verb tenses do more than identify the time of an action. Primarily they are used to reveal how an action unfolds. For instance, in the present tense the action is iterative (repetitive) or linear (continuous). It does not emphasize either the beginning or end of an particular action but shows the action in progress. If John 10:27 were meant to say "my sheep have heard my voice" Jesus would have used the perfect tense. The perfect tense is for actions that have been completed in the past but which have a resulting present tense state of being. This would work for your interpretation because the hearing would have been complete and eternal life would have been the result. It could also have used the aorist tense in which case they heard Jesus word, believed, and would obtain eternal life. Either one of these would have conveyed this very important idea. However, using the present tense makes it ongoing. All of it was ongoing. People were coming. People were hearing and believing as they followed Him. Thus we see the spiritual walk as Him feeding us as we follow. the continual sense of the present tense perfectly comports with the idea of sheep following the shepherd.

    The Lord was not telling anyone that they must continue to hear Him speaking in the distant future in order to have eternal life. Instead, those who were believing Him as He spoke His words were at that moment passed from death unto life and will not come into judgment.

    The present is not about the future.
    These words of the Lord Jesus makes it plain that believers received spiritual life before the Cross:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life"
    (Jn.6:63).
    Yet it was only after the Spirit came that they were able to fully understand and benefit from His spiritual words
    (John 16:13-15)

    Those who heard and believed His words received eternal life the moment when they believed. And they were made alive by the Spirit. The promise was realized at the time when a person believed His words. The Greek words translated "speak" and "they are" and "they are" are all in the "present" tense. The believers received spiritual life at the moment when they believed. And that completely destroys your idea that no one received spiritual life until after the Cross.
    Spiritual life is inextricably linked with the indwelling Holy Spirit

    The subject is not the infilling of the Spirit but the quickening power of the Spirit. Of course Abraham was spiritually alive when he believed God because he received the imputed righteousness of God then. It is IMPOSSIBLE that he would be acceptable to God at a time when he was spiritually dead.
    Where does the Bible say that Abraham was born by the Spirit or filled with the Spirit during his life on earth? Such ideas are never stated in the text. Besides, if it happened all the time why did it have to be prophesied? Why did Christ's crucifixion have to take place before the Spirit would come? You would not even be engaging in such speculations if you were not so intent on making your doctrinal scheme work.

    Yes, but James makes it plain that being born of God comes first and then obedience follows:

    "He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of all he created" (Jas.1:18).
    We can also see that men were being born of God prior to the Cross:

    "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God"
    (Jn.1:12-13).

    Are you willing to argue that being born of the Spirit is not the same thing as being born of God?
    You do not put much stock in the death burial and resurrection of Christ, do you? You seem to think Christ could fulfill all the promises He made without even having to go through it.

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    "Total Depravity" as Calvinists teach it really means "total inability," that is, because of complete corruption the will is no longer about to choose Christ unless the Holy Spirit moves upon then and causes a conversion to occur in their soul first. This goes back to Augustine's dalliance with Persian Gnosticism before he was a Christian. The Gnostics held that mankind was so ruined that people's actions must be predestined by one of two powers. Augustine simply made God the grand programmer.


    The Early Church fathers argued for free will. While they did not believe Adam's guilt was "imputed" to his descendants they believed people had a liability or tendency to sin. They believed mankind was still bore the image of God but that the Image had become distorted.
    Last edited by Shasta; April 21st, 2017 at 04:28 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by glorydaz View Post
    We do know that some were considered righteous by God. Perhaps "falling short of the glory of God" would be a better measure. But even the righteous need fail but once, so it isn't as if we sin continually as so many claim.

    Ezekiel 14:20 Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord God, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.
    A lot of people were righteous. I am not a believer in total depravity.

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    Shasta, earlier I said:

    These words of the Lord Jesus makes it plain that believers received spiritual life before the Cross:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life"
    (Jn.6:63).

    Those who heard and believed His words received eternal life the moment when they believed. And they were made alive by the Spirit. The promise was realized at the time when a person believed His words. The Greek words translated "speak" and "they are" and "they are" are all in the "present" tense. The believers received spiritual life at the moment when they believed. And that completely destroys your idea that no one received spiritual life until after the Cross.

    To this you said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Yet it was only after the Spirit came that they were able to fully understand and benefit from His spiritual words
    (John 16:13-15)
    Why do you just ignore what I said about the tense of the Greek words translated "speak" and "they are"? Those words are not speaking of something which will not happen until the future but instead was happening right then and there. You also say:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    Spiritual life is inextricably linked with the indwelling Holy Spirit
    For some reason you are unable to distinguish between the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit's ability to give life. Again, by the Lord Jesus' own words we can see that those who believed the Lord Jesus were made alive or quickened by the Spirit:

    "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life"
    (Jn.6:63).

    But you say that none was given spiritual life when the Lord Jesus walked on the earth. again, we can see that those who believed Him prior to the Cross were passed from death to life:

    "Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life"
    (Jn.5:24).

    Of course those who believed were passed from spiritual death to spiritual life--"the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."

    I also said:

    We can also see that men were being born of God prior to the Cross:

    "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God"
    (Jn.1:12-13).

    Are you willing to argue that being born of the Spirit is not the same thing as being born of God?

    Here is your non-answer:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shasta View Post
    You do not put much stock in the death burial and resurrection of Christ, do you? You seem to think Christ could fulfill all the promises He made without even having to go through it.
    Instead of answering my question you attempt to undermine my teaching by making the false statement that I "do not put much stock in the death burial and resurrection of Christ."

    Now please answer me. Are you willing to argue that being born of the Spirit is not the same thing as being born of God? Do you think that a person can be born of God and remain spiritually dead?
    Last edited by Jerry Shugart; April 22nd, 2017 at 02:34 PM.

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