Were works ever required? - Battle Royale VIII - Jerry Shugart vs. *Acts9_12Out*

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Turbo

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Battle Royale VIII - Jerry Shugart vs. *Acts9_12Out*

TOPIC:
Were works ever required for salvation?

Have both combatants read, understand and agree to the battle Royale Rules?

I need a post from each combatant stating "YES" regarding the rules.

This will be a five round battle (five posts for each contestant). I will be moderating the debate.

After I receive a "yes" affirming that each combatant understands the rules the Sibbie :sibbie: will flip a coin to determine who posts first, then that chosen combatant will have 48 hours to make his opening statement. Each combatant will then have 48 hours to make subsequent posts after the other combatant makes their post. You need NOT wait for me to officially end a round before making your next response.
 
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Turbo

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ANY AND ALL POSTS ON THIS THREAD WILL BE DELETED UNLESS THEY ARE POSTED BY: Me (Turbo), Knight, Jerry Shugart, or *Acts9_12Out*. You may discuss Battle Royale VIII here.
 

Turbo

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Re: Battle Royale VIII - Jerry Shugart vs. *Acts9_12Out*

Re: Battle Royale VIII - Jerry Shugart vs. *Acts9_12Out*

Thank you, gentlemen.

Now it's time for the coin toss to see who will post first.

Jerry Shugart will be heads; *Acts9_12Out* will be tails.

The Sibbie? Would you do the honors?

the Sibbie :sibbie:

[FLIP]

*clink clink clink clink*

:shocked: Oops! I missed... :eek:
That's OK, the Sibbie. How did it land: heads or tails?

the Sibbie :sibbie:

Heads.
OK, then. Thank you, the Sibbie!

Jerry will begin and is now on the clock. Jerry has 48 hours to make his first post and then *Acts9_12Out*... (do you mind if I call you Jeremy?) ... Jeremy will have 48 hours to make his first post AFTER Jerry's first post has been posted. You do NOT need to take 48 hours to post your post and you do not NEED to wait for me to end a round. Simply post when you're ready as long as it's your turn!

Remember to use the "Preview Reply" button to avoid editing your posts after they have been actually posted.

Let the battle begin!




Battle Royale VIII - Jerry Shugart vs. *Acts9_12Out*

TOPIC:
Were works ever required for salvation?

This will be a five round battle (five posts for each contestant). I will be moderating the debate.



ANY AND ALL POSTS ON THIS THREAD WILL BE DELETED UNLESS THEY ARE POSTED BY: Me (Turbo), Knight, Jerry Shugart, or *Acts9_12Out*. You may discuss Battle Royale VIII here.
 
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Jerry Shugart

Well-known member
Those who teach that “works” were required for eternal salvation say that the Jewish believers must do “works” in order to be saved.But how can they explain the following words of Peter where he says that the Jewish believers are saved in the same way as are the Gentile believers?:

”We believe that it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved,just as they are”(Acts15:11;NIV).

Paul speaks of the “remnant” out of Israel,saying that ”at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace”(Ro.11:5,6).

The Scriptures reveal that “eternal life” is a gift of God (Ro.6:23),and anyone knows that “works” are not required in order to receive a “gift”.Nonetheless,those who argue that works are required for salvation continue to insist that “works” must be performed before the Jewish believers could receive this free “gift of eternal life”.

There were some Jews who attempted to establish their own righteousness before God by doing “works”,but Paul says that they did this in ignorance:

” For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God”(Ro.10:3).

Paul says that it is those who worketh not who receive the imputed righteousness of the Lord:

”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.4:4,5).

Paul calls this imputed “righteousness” a “blessing that comes unto both the circumcision and the uncircumcision:

”Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also?”(Ro.4:6-9).

Paul answers his own question by saying that this righteusness apart from works is imputed to the uncircumcision as well as to the circumcision (v.11).So we can see that this “righteousness of God” comes upon David (who lived under the law) as well as all the circumcised believers apart from works.How can anyone assert that works are required even though Paul says that this blessing comes upon “him who worketh not”?

We can also see that the Jewish believers were “born again” or “born of God” when they believed that Jesus is the promised Messiah,the Son of the Living God (1Pet.1:23;1Jn.5:1,6):

Who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God(Jn.1:13).

The Apostle John rules out the idea that this new birth of God is of “works” because he explicitly states that this birth is not “of the will of the flesh”.

Also,those who argue that “works” are required for salvation also say that those who must work do not receive salvation until the end of a faithful life.But that idea is easily refuted by the Scriptures.John tells the Jewish believers the following:

”And this is the record,that God hath given to us eternal life,and this life is in His Son”(1Jn.5:11).

The word “eternal” is translated from the Greek word “aionios”,which means ”without end,never to cease,everlasting”(“Thayer’s Greek English Lexicon”).So in essence John is telling these Jewish believers that they already possess a life in Jesus Christ that will never end.If it could possibly end,then that would mean that it was never “eternal” to begin with.But John tells them in no uncertain terms that they already possess a life in Jesus Christ that is “eternal”.

If that is not enough,we can see that the Lord Jesus Himself says that those to whom He has given eternal life “shall never perish”:

”And I give unto them eternal life,and they shall never perish;neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand.My Father,who gave them to Me…”(Jn.10:28,29).

These who have been given to Him by the Father “shall never perish”.So if words have any meaning then it becomes evident that those who received John’s epistles “shall never perish”.And this is what the Lord Jesus says about those who have been given to Him by the Father:

”And this is the Father’s will Who hath sent Me,that of ALL that He hath given Me I should lose nothing,but should raise them up again at the last day”(Jn.6:39).

However,despite this overwhelming Scriptual evidence that these Jewish believers do in fact enjoy eternal security,there are those who will still continue to insist that they can lose their “eternal life” if they do not continue to do “works”.It was not only the Jewish believers who lived during the present dispensation who possessed eternal security,but also those who lived in previous dispensations:

”For the Lord loveth justice,and forsaketh not His saints;they are preserved forever(Ps.37:28).

So I ask “Acts 9_12 Out”,why should we believe that works were required for the Jewish believers despite the fact that Paul says that the blessing comes on “him that worketh not”?If “eternal life” is a free gift then why should we believe that works are required in order to acquire that free gift?If one cannot be saved until the end of a faithful life why are the Jewish believers told that they already possess a life in Jesus Christ that will never end?

In His grace,--Jerry
 

Turbo

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Round I

I would like to thank Knight, Turbo and the rest who are responsible for operating TheologyOnline for the opportunity to debate this topic with Jerry. I would like to thank Jerry for discussing this very important issue.

I think it is necessary to lay a foundation for our debate. We must both be careful to define our terms so that we do not end up talking past one another. There are three basic rules for understanding our debate:

1. God is Gracious to send His Son to die for us.
2. Man must have Faith.
3. God sometimes changes the way He asks man to show Faith.

In other words, a more simplistic question might be, “Has the ‘gospel’ (good news) ever changed?” I would say it has. For example, if a person came to me and said, “Jeremy, what must I do to be saved?” Would it be reasonable to turn to back to Genesis and say, “Well, Noah and his family were saved by building an ark. I guess you should build an ark in order to be saved.” We all agree that the previous instruction would be foolish. No one disagrees that the “gospel” for today is, “Believe that Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried and was resurrected.” However, in the example of Noah, we have no record of Noah “believing” that Jesus Christ would die for Noah’s sins. We have no record of Noah “believing” that Jesus Christ would rise from the dead. We do have a record of Noah showing faith by doing a physical act (Genesis 6:13-22). Because Noah did the “faith work” of building the ark, he was saved physically and spiritually from the flood. I believe that this idea is foundational for our discussion. This simple example shows that God asks men at different times to show faith in different ways to be saved.

With that said, it is important to define some terms. Those who hold to a belief system similar to Jerry deny one simple truth. God changes the way He deals with man. How does God ask His children of Israel to show that they have faith in Him? God asks them to keep His law. When Moses came down from Sinai, he was not carrying two tablets of grace now was he? Moses was carrying two tablets with God’s law written on them. God instructed Moses and His children to keep His 10 Commandments. God also gave Moses over 600 ordinances, which are known as the Mosaic Law. James refers to this same Mosaic Law as the perfect law of liberty and the royal law.

James 1:25
25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.

James 2:8
8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well;

James clarifies that he is indeed referring to the Mosaic Law by quoting the law (James 2:8, 11). When a debate arises over the “interpretation” of James 2:14-26, I have yet to see either side pick up the context of James’ exhortation starting in the first chapter. As noted above, James 1:25 clearly shows that the context of James’ discussion is the Mosaic Law. James admonishes his fellow Jews to “look into the perfect law of liberty,” and to “continue in it.” James carries this idea into the 2nd chapter and continues to admonish his fellow Jewish believers to “fulfill the royal law according to Scripture.”

James 2
8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well;
9 but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
10 For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.
11 For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
12 So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.

James goes on to give us an example of what he has just referred to. I’m sure Jerry is familiar with the passage, so I will not exegete all 13 verses. There are a few that are very important, however.

James 2:14
14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can the faith save him?

James is asking a rhetorical question here. The grammatical construction of the verse clearly shows that James is expecting a resounding ”NO!” to his question. James implies that “faith alone” cannot save the man who says he has faith but does not have works.

James 2:17
17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

Many have argued that James 2:14-26 is referring to “a faith that produces good works.” Based on the opening three points of interpretation of this post, James is showing that God asks circumcision believers to show that they have faith by doing physical works. Secondly, we see that the context of James’ discussion in vv. 14-26 is not simply “good works.” The context (James 1:25-2:12) clearly shows that the “works” James is referring to are works of the Mosaic Law. The question that will be asked I’m sure is, did the “works” in and of themselves “save” anyone. The answer is, no way… The works they did were in no way magical and did not equal salvation. The works they did were an expression of faith. It was a physical expression that God asked them to do to show that they had faith in Him. James understands being under the law implies having faith in God and doing what God asks. James does not say, “Believe in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ,” but rather admonishes circumcision believers to show their faith by doing the works of the Mosaic Law.

James 2:18
8 But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.

Again, James’ point is “faith alone” will not cut it. As noted before, the context suggests that James is referring to the Mosaic Law. James understands that God asks circumcision believers to show their faith by keeping God’s law, hence verse 18.

James 2:21-24
21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar?
22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect?
23 And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” And he was called the friend of God.
24 You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.

James refers back to a point in Abram / Abraham’s life which is after circumcision. James references Genesis 22 where God asks Abraham to show his faith in a physical way. Abraham “believed” what God told him, by faith. James’ summary of the event is that Abraham was “justified” because Abraham “believed” God by faith and did a physical act. Abraham expressed his post-circumcision faith by doing a physical act.

James 2:25
25 Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way?

James gives us yet another example of a person who “showed faith in God in a physical way” and was justified by doing a physical act. Under the law, faith was manifested by doing physical acts.

James 2:26
26For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

James concludes with the above summary. Faith without Mosaic Law works is dead. What is important to understand here is, James was a circumcision believer and a circumcision Apostle. James was a believing Jew, under the law, writing to believing Jews, under the law. Now, how is the above reconciled with the passages Jerry posted?

It is important to understand that Paul was the “uncircumcision Apostle.” Without getting into too many details, God set the nation of Israel aside as His special, chosen people. After Israel rejected His Son, God set Israel aside temporarily (Rom 11:11,15,25). After God is finished dealing with the unprophecied body of Christ, Israel will be brought back in.

When God raised up the Apostle Paul in Acts chapter 9 (hence my name:D), He gave Paul a new set of instructions. God gave Paul the gospel of Grace. Paul refers to this gospel as “my gospel” in Romans 16:25. In the body of Christ where there is no Jew nor Greek, nor Slave nor Free, nor Barbarian nor Scythian nor Male nor Female, God no longer requires physical works as an expression of faith. God, when dealing with Israel, asked man to show faith in a physical way. Now, God asks us (the body of Christ) to show our faith by believing in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The gospel for the body of Christ is “Believe in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ,” (1 Cor 15:1-4). This is why I agree with every Pauline reference Jerry cited. In the body of Christ, “to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt” (Romans 4:4). The body of Christ is not under the Mosaic Law, but the church that is Israel is under the law.

What is especially interesting to note is that Paul also refers back to a point in Abram / Abraham’s life. What must be understood is that Paul refers back to Abram, before God required a physical work (circumcision). Here’s what Paul has to say…

Romans 4
1 What then shall we say that Abraham our father has found according to the flesh?
2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.
3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”
4 Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt.

Again, Paul is writing to the body of Christ. We are not under the law. Paul refers back to Abram’s pre-circumcision life where Abram was “justified” by faith alone. What is interesting to ask here is, what did Abram believe by faith?

Genesis 15:5,6
5 Then He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.”
6 And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.

This is another wonderful example of a man “having faith” in what God told him. Abram did not “believe” that in the future, Jesus Christ would die for him and be resurrected. Abram “believed” that his seed would be like the stars of the sky. When Abram “believed” what God told him, God “accounted it to him for righteousness.”

One thing that must be noted here since it is relevant to Jerry’s post… Abram / Abraham did not have eternal security. In Genesis 15:6, Abram “believed” his seed would be like the stars of the sky. Unfortunately, Abram had a “flesh trip” and attempted to fulfill God’s promise on his own. Due to lack of space, I ask that our readers look to Genesis 16 to follow along. In short, Abram “went into Hagar” (Gen 16:4) and she bore to him Ishmael when he was 86 years old. Ishmael was not the “promised” son. Abram fell out of favor with God, so God responded with a physical requirement to show Abram’s faith. God required Abram (who became Abraham after circumcision) to “cut off the flesh of his foreskin” to show his faith. God asked Abraham to circumcise himself when he was 99 years old to signify “no confidence in the flesh” (Philippians 3:3). When Abraham submitted to the physical act of circumcision, he was again in God’s favor. If Abraham had refused to circumcise himself, Abraham would have been “cut off” and died in his sin. Any person who refused circumcision would have broken God’s covenant, and been “cut off.”

To summarize, the uncircumcision gospel is rooted in “justification apart from works” (Genesis 15:6 & Abram) while the circumcision gospel is rooted in “justification by faith works” (Genesis 17, 22 & Abraham). Once an understanding is reached that God dealt with Israel under the law where “faith works were necessary” and God is dealing with us, the body of Christ apart from the law where “faith alone” is necessary, then the Bible is much easier to understand. I have lots of material to present, but will save it for later rounds. This ends my positive case for this round…

RESPONSE TO JERRY’S QUESTIONS

1. Why does Peter say (Acts 15:11) “But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they.”

A couple of points here… Once again, Jerry quotes a verse without considering the context. Circumcision believers as well as uncircumcision believers are both “justified by faith” in God. Again, point 2 was, “Man must have faith.” Consider the context… Peter is addressing the Jerusalem Council. The sect of the Pharisees who believed were up in arms because they had heard that God was now accepting Gentiles apart from the law. These were gentile believers who did not proselyte to Judaism…

Acts 15:5
5 But some of the sect of the Pharisees who believed rose up, saying, “It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.”

Now, if “works” were never necessary for salvation, where did the Pharisees who believed come up with the idea that these gentile converts needed to keep the law of Moses and be circumcised? Next, Peter is “called to the carpet” for going to a Gentile’s house.

Acts 15
6 Now the apostles and elders came together to consider this matter.
7 And when there had been much dispute, Peter rose up and said to them: “Men and brethren, you know that a good while ago God chose among us, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.
8 “So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us,
9 “and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

Notice verse 9. God purified “their hearts” by faith. What’s even more interesting is the fact that Peter identifies two separate, distinct groups of believers. God acknowledged ”them” just as He did ”us.” Peter himself recognizes that there are circumcision believers and uncircumcision believers. God made no distinction ”between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.” Two groups of believers, purified by faith in God. Now, let’s pick up Jerry’s verse in context…

Acts 15
10 “Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke on the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
11 “But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they.”

Again, two groups, saved by having faith in God. Even James agrees that there are two groups of believers. After there is resolution, James decides to “write to them” to abstain from certain things.

Acts 15:19
19 “Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the Gentiles who are turning to God,
20 “but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood.

Whoever these “Gentiles who are turning to God” are, James does not count himself among ”them.” James counts himself with the ”us” Israel. Even though there are two groups of believers, both groups are saved by faith in God. God asks those groups to show faith in different ways…

2. Why should we believe that works were required for the Jewish believers despite the fact that Paul says that the blessing comes on “him that worketh not?”

I addressed that above. Secondly, I must say it again, Paul is writing to the body of Christ. James is writing to circumcision believers.

3. If “eternal life” is a free gift then why should we believe that works are required in order to acquire that free gift?

Unfortunately Jerry, you are mashing together dispensations. You are attempting to universally apply verses that were intended for the body of Christ. Secondly, you misunderstand the point. I am not saying that “works are required” to obtain that free gift. How does one obtain the free gift? By “having faith” in what God tells you. How did Noah acquire God’s free gift? By “having faith” in what God stated. Noah showed that faith by building an ark. How did Jerry acquire God’s free gift? By “having faith” in what God told him. Jerry “had faith” that Jesus Christ dies on the cross, was buried and raised from the dead. Noah and Jerry both “had faith” in God, but showed their faith in different ways. God gave Noah and Jerry the gift of eternal life.

4. If one cannot be saved until the end of a faithful life why are the Jewish believers told that they already possess a life in Jesus Christ that will never end?

Jerry, I can only assume that you are referring to 1 Peter 1:9:

1 Peter 1
9 receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

Maybe you are referring to 2 Peter 1:10,11?

2 Peter 1
10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble;
11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Notice Jerry, if the elect of the circumcision are diligent to “make (their) call and election sure” they will never stumble. An entrance will be supplied into the everlasting kingdom. “Will be supplied” is the word epicorhghqhsetai which is a Future Passive Indicative Third Person Singular. Their entrance is future tense and is dependant upon their “making their calling and election sure” and “never stumbling.” Now, to answer your question…

What Jerry fails to realize is that the circumcision gospel is a very conditional program. Jerry seems to think that a few verses that imply “possession of eternal life” somehow overrides the entire theme of the OT and a majority of the NT. It was understood that “those who possessed eternal life” did so under conditions. As long as they remained faithful, they possessed eternal life. Again, Jerry doesn’t understand how these terms are applied. Jerry quotes 1 John 5:11 over and over.

1 John 5
11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.

Jerry rips this verse out of context and makes it a pre-text. The entire epistle of 1 John is conditional! It does not seem plausible to discount the numerous conditional warnings in 1 John based on one verse. Here are a few examples…

1 John 1
9 If we keep on confessing our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

John admonishes the circumcision believers to “keep on confessing” their sins. The word here is omologwmen. This is a Present Active Subjunctive First Person Plural. This shows present, continuous action. Secondly, the grammatical construction is a 3rd Class Condition. This means that John is saying, “Maybe they will keep on confessing, maybe they won’t.” If they do “keep on confessing,” then the last half of the verse is true. If they keep on confessing, Christ is faithful and just to forgive them their sins and to cleanse them from all unrighteousness. If they don’t “keep on confessing,” Christ is not faithful and just to forgive them their sins and to cleanse them from all unrighteousness. 1 John is conditional for circumcision believers.

1 John 2
3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.

Jerry fails to interpret 1 John 5:11 within the context of the epistle. John clearly states “we know Him, if we keep His commandments.” If circumcision believers do not keep His commandments, they are liars, and the truth is not in them. I could provide many more examples of the conditionality of 1 John, but this post is already too long. If Jerry wants more proof, he can ask, and I will provide it.

If I have failed to respond to any of your questions Jerry, please ask again.

QUESTIONS FOR JERRY

1. What would have happened to Noah if he refused to build the ark?
2. What would have happened to Abraham if he refused to be circumcised?
3. Does the immediate context of James 2:14-26 suggest “justification by works of the Mosaic Law?”
4. Does God change the way He deals with man for salvation?


I have many more questions for Jerry, but I will save them for later rounds.

In Christ,

--Jeremy Finkenbinder
 

Turbo

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Hall of Fame
DING, DING, DING.... that's it for round #1.


Jerry Shugart is now on the clock as round two has begun!


ANY AND ALL POSTS ON THIS THREAD WILL BE DELETED UNLESS THEY ARE POSTED BY: Me (Turbo), Knight, Jerry Shugart, or *Acts9_12Out*.
You may discuss Battle Royale VIII here.
 
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Jerry Shugart

Well-known member
I would like to thank Jeremy for agreeing to debate this vital issue and also to thank Turbo and Knight for their work on TheologyOnLine where those of faith have a chance to exchange ideas in regard to the revelation of the Lord.

In my first post,I asked:

"Why should we believe that works were required for the Jewish believers despite the fact that Paul says that the blessing comes on "him that worketh not?"

To which Jeremy replied:

"I addressed that above. Secondly, I must say it again, Paul is writing to the body of Christ. James is writing to circumcision believers."

In his words "above" Jeremy seems to be saying that the epistle where these words are written is addressed to the Body of Christ and therefore the words in regard to those who worketh not are only in reference to those in the Body of Christ.He says:
This is why I agree with every Pauline reference Jerry cited. In the body of Christ, "to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt" (Romans 4:4). The body of Christ is not under the Mosaic Law, but the church that is Israel is under the law.
What Jeremy fails to understand is the fact that although the epistle to the Romans is written to the Body of Christ in these verses Paul is not addressing the salvation of only those who are in the Body of Christ.He is speaking of not only the "uncircumcision" but he is also speaking of the "circumcision",and he uses David (who lived under the Law) as an example of one who received the "blessing" of those who are saved apart from works-"to him that worketh NOT,but believeth"(Ro.4:5-9).

Jeremy says that he "agrees with these words of Paul" but then he turns around and says that David and the circumcision must "work" in order to be saved!Evidently Jeremy expects us to believe that the words, "to him that worketh not" are not in regard to David or the circumcised believers based on the fact that "Paul is writing to the body of Christ."

So we can see that in order to believe Jeremy's answer in regard to those who "worketh not" we must somehow believe that these words are only in regard to those in the Body of Christ despite the fact that Paul clearly uses these words in regard to David as well as the circumcised believers.

I also ponited out that Peter said that he was saved "by grace",and if it is by "grace" then the reward is not of "works" (Acts15:11;Ro.11:6).But Jeremy seems to think that "the Law" was in regard to "eternal salvation".He says:
Now, if "works" were never necessary for salvation, where did the Pharisees who believed come up with the idea that these gentile converts needed to keep the law of Moses and be circumcised?
The "works of the Law" were indeed necessary for "salvation",but that salvation is not in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead in regard to "temporal" or "physical" salvation.When a Jew committed a sin that was punishable by "physical" death he could bring an "offering" to be killed in his place.The Mosaic Covenant was never in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead was only in regard to temporal things:

" The soul that sinneth, it shall die…But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die"(Ez.18:20,21).

The Jews only understood the Mosaic Covenant in terms of "physical" death.That is also true of the Abrahamic Covenant,as witnessed by the following words:

"The oath which he sware to our father Abraham,That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear …That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us"(Lk.1:73,74,71).

The "New Scofield Study Bible" correctly points out that the Mosaic Covenant "was not given as a way of life (i.e. a means of justification…),but as a rule of living for a people already in the covenant of Abraham and covered by blood sacrifices…)"(Note at Ex.19:1).And that idea is reinforced by the following Scriptual passage:

" This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success"(Josh.1:8).

And that is the meaning that Paul gives to "the Law" when he says the following:

" But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them"
(Gal.3:11,12).

So Jeremy attempts to take things that are clearly in reference to the "temporal" sphere and make them in reference to "eternal" things.The Law was only a "shadow" or "type" that illustrates spiritual realities (Heb.10:1),but Jeremy attempts to employ these "types" in his efforts to prove that obedience to the Law was necessary for "eternal" salvation".

Next,I asked,"If 'eternal life' is a free gift then why should we believe that works are required in order to acquire that free gift?

To which Jeremy said:
Unfortunately Jerry, you are mashing together dispensations. You are attempting to universally apply verses that were intended for the body of Christ.
I guess that Jeremy thinks that the "gift of eternal life" is only in regard to this dispensation.But how can the following words of the Lord Jesus spoken in a previous dispensation be understood?:

"Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water"(Jn.4:10).

Jeremy continues:
Secondly, you misunderstand the point. I am not saying that "works are required" to obtain that free gift. How does one obtain the free gift? By "having faith" in what God tells you."
Jeremy,the question we are debating is whether or not "works were ever required for salvation".But here you are say:

"I am not saying that 'works are required' to obtain that free gift."

Thiis is an example of having your cake and eating it too.At one time you say that "works" are required for eternal salvation,but when cornered by Scriptual passages that cannot be disputed you say that you are not saying that "works are required" for the free gift of eternal life!

Here is your "reasoning".You say that in past dispensations the believer must "demonstrate" their faith by "works" in order that they might be saved.But the Lord knows who has true "faith" and who does not.He does not need "outward" demonstrations in order to know if one has true faith or not:

" …for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart"(1Sam.16:7).

The Lord has a reason for men to be "obedient" to their faith,but that reason has nothing to do with "demonstrating" to Him that they have a true faith or not.According to you in past dispensations one must "demonstrate" their faith throughout their lives before they could attain "eternal life".But as I have already demonstrated,John tells the Jewish believers that they already possess a life in Jesus Christ that is "eternal"-"Without end,never to cease,everlasting".

But you say:
Jerry, I can only assume that you are referring to 1 Peter 1:9:
1 Peter 1
9 receiving the end of your faith-the salvation of your souls.
First of all,I was referring to 1Jn.5:11:

"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son"(1Jn.5:11).

These Jewish believers were told that they already possessed a life in Jesus Christ that is "without end".And the Lord Jesus said that those who He has given this "eternal life" shall never perish(Jn.10:28).He also says that those who have received eternal life were given to Him by the Father,and of those He says "that of all that He has given Me I should lose nothing,but raise it up again the last day"(Jn.6:39).

So let us examine the answers which Jeremy gives in regard to these Scriptures.He says:
. It was understood that "those who possessed eternal life" did so under conditions. As long as they remained faithful, they possessed eternal life.
Jeremy says they posssessed "eternal life" as long as they remained faithful,which implies that they could lose this "eternal life".But if the could lose a life in Jesus Christ that John describes as "without end" then it is obvious that they never possessed a life in Christ that was "without end" to begin with.He seems to think that even though the Lord Jesus Himself says that those who possess eternal life shall never perish that they can indeed perish.He seems to think that the Lord did not do the will of the Father and that some who were given Him by the Father can indeed become lost.

Jeremy continues,saying that 1Jn.5:11 is "conditional":
Jerry rips this verse out of context and makes it a pre-text. The entire epistle of 1 John is conditional! It does not seem plausible to discount the numerous conditional warnings in 1 John based on one verse.
Jeremy must not understand the difference between a "conditional" statement and an "unconditional" statement.The statement at 1Jn.5:11 have absolutely no "conditions" attached to it.They are told that they already possess a life in Christ that is "eternal" and in the next verse they are told that they know that they possess eternal life.

He goes back to the first chapter in order to find a "condition" that he can apply to an "unconditional" statement four chapter later.However,the verse he quotes (1Jn.1:9) is in regard to the believer's "fellowship"(v.6) with the Lord and not in regard to one's "eternal salvation".If we confess our sins,or "judge ourselves",then we will not be chastened by the Lord in our "walk" or "fellowship" with Him.The following words are written to those in the Body of Christ:

" For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world"(1Cor.11:31,32).

The Jewish believers are also warned about the "chastening of the Lord"(Heb.12:5-11),but this "chastening" is in regard to our "walk" or "fellowship" with the Lord and is not in reference to "eternal salvation".The next verse that Jeremy quotes is also in regard to our "fellowship" with the Lord:
1 John 2
3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
4 He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.
All John is saying is that if the believer really knows the Lord in a personal way (through his fellowship with Him) then he will indeed keep the things which are commanded of him.However,he says that someone may say that he really has fellowship with the Lord but if that person's life shows no evidence of that fellowship then that person is not telling the truth.

Jeremy attempts to use the following verse to demonstrate that the Jews did not receive the "salvation of their souls" until the end of a faithful life:

"Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls."(1Pet.1:9).

However,the word receiving is in the "present tense".At the time that Peter was writing his epistle he was telling the Jewsish believers that at the "present" time they have already received the salvation of their souls.The word "end" can mean,"the end to which all things relate,the aim,purpose"("Thayer's Greek English Lexicon").So in this case it means "the result of your faith",and that result of faith is the salvation of the soul,and that is the way that it is translated in some Bibles:

"Receiving the result of your faith, the salvation of your souls"(1Pet.1:9;HNV).

Jeremy also quotes the following verse:

" For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ"(2Pet.1:11).

Here Peter is speaking of the "kingdom of heaven" which will be set up on earth.The Christian is told that they have already been "translated" into the eternal kingdom (Col.1:13) in that we have already been risen with the Lord Jesus and we now sit together with Him at the right hand of the Father (Eph.2:6).That is the Christian's "standing" before the Lord.And the Hebrew Christians also share that same standing:

" But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels"(Heb.12:22).

Just as Gentile Christian's are now seated in heavenly places,so are the Jewish believers.And the meaning of the "heavenly Jerusalem" can be found at Galatians 4:22-31-"Jerusalem which is above".

Now,since this post is so long I will answer your points in regard to the words of James in my next post.However,I will answer your questions now that are not in reference to the epistle of James:
1. What would have happened to Noah if he refused to build the ark?
The words in the Hebrews says that Noah received a good report before the Lord because of his "faith" and there is no mention of his "works":

" Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.For by it the elders obtained a good report"(Heb.11:1,2).

Noah was justified by his "faith" even before he built the ark.The author of Hebrews says nothing about Noah obtaining a good report because of his "obedience of faith".No doubt that he was a "saint" and this is what the OT says about the "saints" of the Lord:

"For the LORD loveth justice, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever"(Ps.37:28).

From the Scriptures I can only conclude that Noah was justified before the Lord before he even built the ark and at the time that he had "faith" that he was "preserved forever".
2. What would have happened to Abraham if he refused to be circumcised?
As Paul says,the circumcision that Abraham submitted to was but a "seal" of his faith (Ro.4:11).Since we know that Abraham was already circumcised in the "heart,in the Spirit" (Ro.2:29) his "eternal" destiny was not in question.He too received a good report with the Lord because of his "faith" and he too was "preserved forever".He might have lost his life,but that does not change the fact that his eternal destiny was secure.
4. Does God change the way He deals with man for salvation?
The sinner is justified before God by the principle of "grace"(Ro.3:24).The sinner receives this imputed righteousness of God by "faith"(Ro.5:1).And all this is made possible by the work of the Lord Jesus upon the Cross (Ro.5:9)

However,the "revelation" of God that one must believe in order to be saved has changed throughout history.And it is those who believe God,no matter what that "revelation" may be,who are justified in the sight of the Lord:

"Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness"(Ro.4:3).

Now two question for you,Jeremy.You do not seem to believe that the word "eternal" in the following verse means "without end,never to cease,everlasting.":

"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son"(1Jn.5:11).

I use the definition given by a Greek expert,and by using that definition the words of John can mean only one thing-these Jews already possess a life in Jesus Christ that is "without end".

Please give me your definition of the word translated "eternal" (aionios) and we will insert that meaning in the verse at 1Jn.5:11 and see what you think that John is saying.

Also,the following words seem to indicate that for the Jews "faith" in Jesus Christ is what brings about "eternal life":

" For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life"(Jn.3:16).

Would you please give me your interpretation of the meaning of those words?

In His grace,--Jerry
 

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Round II

Since Jerry failed to respond to the entire section of James 1:25-2:26, I will make my positive case for the second round a bit shorter. I don’t want Jerry to get overwhelmed… :D

In light of my first post, please consider the purpose of the Mosaic Law. God asked the children of Israel to show faith by keeping His law in order to be saved. Please consider the following:

In Numbers 15:22-30, God lays out His ordinances for sin offering when the children of Israel sinned unintentionally. God required specific sin offerings for those sins to be covered. In Numbers 15:30-31, God explains what will become of those in covenant relationship with Him who sin presumptuously.

Numbers 15
30‘ But the person who does anything presumptuously, whether he is native-born or a stranger, that one brings reproach on the LORD, and he shall be cut off from among his people.
31‘ Because he has despised the word of the LORD, and has broken His commandment, that person shall be completely cut off; his guilt shall be upon him.’

We see “the person who does anything presumptuously has despised the word of the LORD, and has broken His commandment…” What happens to the person who has broken His commandment? That person shall be completely cut off; his guilt shall be upon him.

Notice, they are COMPLETELY cut off. HIS GUILT shall be upon him. If a person sinned presumptuously and had broken God’s commandment, he went to hell. God gives an example of a person who “sinned presumptuously, broke His commandment, and his guilt was upon him.”

Numbers 15
32Now while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath day.

This man is numbered among the children of Israel. This man obviously understands God’s law. This man defied God and went out to gather sticks on the Sabbath day. What happens to this man who sinned presumptuously and broke God’s commandment?

Numbers 15
33And those who found him gathering sticks brought him to Moses and Aaron, and to all the congregation.
34They put him under guard, because it had not been explained what should be done to him.
35Then the LORD said to Moses, “The man must surely be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones outside the camp.”

God passed judgment on this man and commanded the children of Israel to kill him. Why? Because this man sinned presumptuously and broke God’s commandment.

Numbers 15
36So, as the LORD commanded Moses, all the congregation brought him outside the camp and stoned him with stones, and he died.

According to the principles God set forth in the preceding verses, this man was cut off completely. This man’s guilt was upon him when he died. This man, who was numbered among the children of Israel, died in his sin (breaking God’s commandment) and went to hell. Under the law, the penalty for sinning presumptuously and failing to keep God’s commandments was very harsh. However, if a person sinned unintentionally, they could offer certain sacrifices to cover the unintentional sins. The author of Hebrews shows that the same principle is in effect for circumcision believers under the law.

Hebrews 10
26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Notice, this is addressing people who sin presumptuously after they receive the knowledge of the truth. If they sinned presumptuously, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins. What could these believers who fell away expect?

Hebrews 10
27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.

These people could expect loss of salvation. There is no longer a sacrifice for their sins, not even Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 10
28 Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.
29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

In case there was a question whether or not this is referring to those who “possessed eternal life,” notice that they were sanctified by the blood of Christ. Even though they had been sanctified by the blood of Christ, if they sinned presumptuously, after receiving the knowledge of the truth, they went to hell. This idea is based in God’s example from Numbers 15 which refers to those who despised the word of the Lord and have broken His commandments.

To buttress my claims, I will offer a couple of passages that show those under the Mosaic Law kept God’s law for salvation. Why did they attempt to keep God’s law? So that their faith would be counted as righteousness.

Deuteronomy 6
24 ‘And the LORD commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is this day.
25 ‘Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the LORD our God, as He has commanded us.’

I don’t know how much more clear it could be. God commanded the children of Israel to keep His law, so that He might preserve them alive. It would be righteousness for them. This is more than just “physical life.” This is salvation.

The next portion of Scripture I would like to present is found in Ezekiel. In fact, Jerry has already offered his comments on this passage. Here’s what Jerry has to say about the passage:

Jerry Shugart said:

The "works of the Law" were indeed necessary for "salvation",but that salvation is not in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead in regard to "temporal" or "physical" salvation.When a Jew committed a sin that was punishable by "physical" death he could bring an "offering" to be killed in his place.The Mosaic Covenant was never in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead was only in regard to temporal things:

" The soul that sinneth, it shall die…But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die"(Ez.18:20,21).

Now, do Jerry’s comments agree with Scripture? We shall see… Here’s the passage in context with my comments.

Ezekiel 18
19 “Yet you say, ‘Why should the son not bear the guilt of the father?’ Because the son has done what is lawful and right, and has kept all My statutes and observed them, he shall surely live.

Why is it important for “the son” to keep all God’s statutes and observe them in order to live physically? Jerry’s “temporal” claim makes no sense. Does not the unrighteous man, who does not keep God’s law, still live physically? Now, let’s consider the following verses in light of Jerry’s comments. Jerry says the following is referring to “temporal things” only.

Ezekiel 18
20 “The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.
21 “But if a wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die.

Jerry seems to believe that the prerequisite for “living physically” involves keeping the Mosaic Law. Again, this doesn’t follow logically since the unrighteous continued living physically without keeping God’s law. A correct interpretation of the above, clearly shows that a “wicked man” who’s eternal destiny apart from God was hell, could turn from his wicked ways and “live” spiritually. It doesn’t make sense that a “wicked” man who was already living physically could turn from his wicked ways and “continue living physically.” :confused: Let’s continue with the passage in context…

Ezekiel 18
22 “None of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall live.

The wicked man who turns from his wicked ways and keeps God’s commandments, none of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall live. Now, I ask again, does what Jerry said make any sense? I think not. What is the benefit of a physically alive “wicked” man turning to God to continue living physically? The truth of God’s Word is, this “wicked” man could repent, turn to God, keep His commandments and live spiritually. Let’s continue,

Ezekiel 18
23 “Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?” says the Lord GOD, “and not that he should turn from his ways and live?
24 “But when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live? All the righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; because of the unfaithfulness of which he is guilty and the sin which he has committed, because of them he shall die.

Now, Jerry is really in trouble. First off, how can the above refer to physical death only? Doesn’t it follow that all of the wicked and all of the righteous die physically regardless of their spiritual state? A correct interpretation suggests that if a “righteous” man turns away from God and commits sin, that person is found guilty of the sin he committed and he dies spiritually. The above passage clearly shows that under the law, people definitely needed to keep God’s commandments in order to be saved spiritually.

Finally, for good measure, let’s look at one of many examples of David’s belief that law keeping by faith converts the soul.

Psalm 19:7a
7a The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul;

The above passages, coupled with James’ admonition to keep the Mosaic Law clearly shows that circumcision believers needed to show their faith by keeping the law. Again, I have many more positive passages for my case, but I will save them for later rounds.

RESPONSE TO JERRY’S QUESTIONS

Jerry said,

Jeremy says that he "agrees with these words of Paul" but then he turns around and says that David and the circumcision must "work" in order to be saved!Evidently Jeremy expects us to believe that the words, "to him that worketh not" are not in regard to David or the circumcised believers based on the fact that "Paul is writing to the body of Christ."

Exactly right Jerry. What’s interesting is, David understood that he deserved death for the horrible sins (adultery to name one) he committed. What is David’s purpose for writing Psalm 32? David understands that he is indeed truly blessed because God did not command death as would be expected under the law. What Jerry fails to realize is, David was a man after God’s own heart. God promised that a descendant of David would sit on an eternal throne (2 Samuel 7). David, as well as Paul, recognizes that God “graced David out” of a situation that deserved death. Take a look at 2 Samuel 12. David has just found out that he has passed judgment on himself and commanded death! David sent Uriah to the front lines so that Uriah would die. David wanted Uriah out of the picture so David could take Uriah’s wife. When Nathan confronts David and shares with him a “story” of David’s sin, David commands “that man” to be put to death. When Nathan tells David that he is the man, David is sorrowful. In fact, God still punishes David for his sin by taking David’s own son.

2 Samuel 12
13 So David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” And Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die.

If David was not deserving of death, why would Nathan need to tell him he would not die?

2 Samuel 12
14 “However, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also who is born to you shall surely die.”
15 Then Nathan departed to his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it became ill.
16 David therefore pleaded with God for the child, and David fasted and went in and lay all night on the ground.
17 So the elders of his house arose and went to him, to raise him up from the ground. But he would not, nor did he eat food with them.
18 Then on the seventh day it came to pass that the child died.

If David did not deserve death because “God does not impute iniquity,” why did God still punish David by taking his son? You see Jerry, David and Paul understood that David received grace that was not deserving. Paul uses this example to show the body of Christ that we have received unwarranted grace from God. David was under the law and should have been put to death. David knew it, Paul knew it, but God graced David out.

Next, Jerry fails to respond to my response in Acts 15. I’ll ask again… Jerry, are the circumcision and the uncircumcision saved by faith in God? Why were the sect of the Pharisees who believed under the assumption that the Gentiles who were turning to God needed to be circumcised and keep the law? (Acts 15:1,5) Jerry answers my response to Acts 15 by going to Ezekiel 18 and uses his “physical death” argument. I have shown Jerry’s interpretation to be lacking greatly above.

Jerry said,

I guess that Jeremy thinks that the "gift of eternal life" is only in regard to this dispensation.But how can the following words of the Lord Jesus spoken in a previous dispensation be understood?

No Jerry. I don’t think that. Your straw man won’t work here…

Jerry said: Jeremy,the question we are debating is whether or not "works were ever required for salvation".But here you are say:

"I am not saying that 'works are required' to obtain that free gift."

Thiis is an example of having your cake and eating it too.At one time you say that "works" are required for eternal salvation,but when cornered by Scriptual passages that cannot be disputed you say that you are not saying that "works are required" for the free gift of eternal life!

Just like with Scripture, Jerry rips my statement out of context. I clearly stated that law works were not magical nor did they “equal” salvation. I clearly stated that law works were necessary in the context of the way God asked man to show faith. Next, Jerry comments on my critique of 1 John.

These Jewish believers were told that they already possessed a life in Jesus Christ that is "without end".And the Lord Jesus said that those who He has given this "eternal life" shall never perish(Jn.10:28).He also says that those who have received eternal life were given to Him by the Father,and of those He says "that of all that He has given Me I should lose nothing,but raise it up again the last day"(Jn.6:39).

Once again, Jerry fails to deal with the context. They “possess” eternal life as long as they understand the conditions. In fact, just two verses later, John writes,

1 John 5:13
13These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

John has “written these things” to them so that they “might” know they possess eternal life. What things did John write? “Keep on confessing your sins.” “By this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.” Again, John 10:28 must be interpreted in light of the conditional circumcision gospel. They will never perish, as long as they continue following God and keeping His commandments. Jerry says Christ “did not lose any” that the Father gave Him. The Father gave Judas to Christ, and Judas was lost.

John 17
12 “While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.

Judas is another example of one who “possessed eternal life,” fell away, and went to hell. The Father gave Judas to Christ, and Judas was lost… Jerry continues,

Jeremy must not understand the difference between a "conditional" statement and an "unconditional" statement.The statement at 1Jn.5:11 have absolutely no "conditions" attached to it.They are told that they already possess a life in Christ that is "eternal" and in the next verse they are told that they know that they possess eternal life.

He goes back to the first chapter in order to find a "condition" that he can apply to an "unconditional" statement four chapter

First of all, I went back to the first and second chapters to show a “condition” that applies also in the fifth chapter, not the fourth. Secondly, I just showed you that John puts yet another condition on their “possessing” eternal life just two verses later (1 John 5:13).

However,the verse he quotes (1Jn.1:9) is in regard to the believer's "fellowship"(v.6) with the Lord and not in regard to one's "eternal salvation".If we confess our sins,or "judge ourselves",then we will not be chastened by the Lord in our "walk" or "fellowship" with Him.The following words are written to those in the Body of Christ:

" For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world"(1Cor.11:31,32)

Two points here. First, it must be noted that this is Jerry’s opinion. Jerry does nothing to deal with the grammatical construction of 1 John 1:9. How does “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” relate to fellowship Jerry? It doesn’t. Secondly, as usual, Jerry tears a passage out of the context and makes it a pre-text. 1 Cor 11 cited by Jerry has to do with the Lord’s Supper. More grammar for Jerry to deal with… 1 Cor 11:31 is a 2nd Class Condition. Paul’s intent here is to show that the protasis and apodosis are both contrary to fact. We don’t judge ourselves… But, if we did, we still would not be judged. Since this is not a discussion on the Lord’s Supper, I will leave Jerry to struggle with the context and grammar. What must be noted is, Jerry condemns me for substantiating my case within the same book, just a few chapters previous. Jerry goes to another book by another author to attempt to interpret 1 John 1:9. Next, I provided proof from 1 John that circumcision believers understood keeping the law as a litmus test for “knowing” Christ. Here’s how Jerry responds…

1 John 2
3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
4 He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.

All John is saying is that if the believer really knows the Lord in a personal way (through his fellowship with Him) then he will indeed keep the things which are commanded of him.However,he says that someone may say that he really has fellowship with the Lord but if that person's life shows no evidence of that fellowship then that person is not telling the truth.

Sorry Jerry, the passage says “by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.” The passage says nothing about “keeping the things commanded of him.” Again, John’s point was that they know Christ if they keep God’s law.

Concerning 1 Peter 1:9, Jerry consults “Thayer’s” dictionary. Suffice to say, “Thayer’s” is not authoritative in any way. Jerry, the Greek word teloV means “end.” The word is used 32 times in the NT, and means “end.” Here’s just one example…

1 Corinthians 15:24
24 Then comes the end, teloV when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He abolishes all rule and all authority and power.

Let’s use your test and plug your definition in here…

Then comes the result when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He abolishes all rule and all authority and power.

Sorry Jerry, doesn’t work… teloV means “end.” Next, Jerry comments on my statements concerning 2 Peter 1:10.

Jeremy also quotes the following verse:

" For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ"(2Pet.1:11).

Here Peter is speaking of the "kingdom of heaven" which will be set up on earth.The Christian is told that they have already been "translated" into the eternal kingdom (Col.1:13) in that we have already been risen with the Lord Jesus and we now sit together with Him at the right hand of the Father (Eph.2:6).

First off, it must be noted that Jerry fails to deal with the grammatical construction of the verse. “Will be supplied” is future tense and must be dealt with. Jerry attempts to pull the wool over our eyes by attempting to neutralize 2 Peter 1:10 with a Pauline reference. What Jerry doesn’t realize is, he has just stumbled upon one of the many “Big Differences” between the circumcision gospel and the uncircumcision gospel. For the circumcision believer, their entrance is future. It comes at the end of a faithful life. For the body of Christ, Jerry rightly notes that we have been transferred into the kingdom of the Son of His love (Col 1:13). Thank you for noting that dispensational difference Jerry! :thumb: :D I also find it interesting that Jerry again needs to appeal to another book to attempt to prove his case. Why not deal with the grammar and context in 2 Peter Jerry? Why go somewhere else?

Next, Jerry said his post was too long to respond to my points concerning James 1:25-2:26. He does, however attempt to respond to the other three…

1. What would have happened to Noah if he refused to build the ark?

The words in the Hebrews says that Noah received a good report before the Lord because of his "faith" and there is no mention of his "works":

Really Jerry? You must have overlooked Hebrews 11:7

Hebrews 11
7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.


Isn’t this what I’ve been saying all along? Noah showed his faith by doing a physical act. Noah “prepared and ark for the saving of his household.” Now, I know Jerry will try to say that Noah was saved only physically, but the author of Hebrews contrasts Noah’s work and saving with the condemnation of the world. Noah was saved, and those who died in the flood went to hell. Jerry continues,

Noah was justified by his "faith" even before he built the ark.The author of Hebrews says nothing about Noah obtaining a good report because of his "obedience of faith".

Jerry, didn’t I just show you that above? Noah was justified because he built the ark…

From the Scriptures I can only conclude that Noah was justified before the Lord before he even built the ark and at the time that he had "faith" that he was "preserved forever".

So, basically you’re saying, Noah could have rejected God’s command, would have died in the flood and still went to heaven… :confused:

2. What would have happened to Abraham if he refused to be circumcised?

As Paul says,the circumcision that Abraham submitted to was but a "seal" of his faith (Ro.4:11).Since we know that Abraham was already circumcised in the "heart,in the Spirit" (Ro.2:29) his "eternal" destiny was not in question.He too received a good report with the Lord because of his "faith" and he too was "preserved forever".He might have lost his life,but that does not change the fact that his eternal destiny was secure.

So according to you, Abraham, like Noah could have rejected circumcision and been killed physically and still ended up in heaven? How does this work with the following passage?

Genesis 17
10 “This is My covenant which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: Every male child among you shall be circumcised;

God says they need to keep the covenant, Jerry says they don’t need to.

Genesis 17
13 “He who is born in your house and he who is bought with your money must be circumcised, and My covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

An everlasting covenant that they could refuse to follow and still be saved? :confused:

Genesis 17
14 “And the uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant.”

Let me guess… The “cutting off” is only physical. They could refuse to follow God’s everlasting covenant, break God’s covenant, and still be saved? :confused:

Next, Abraham could have rejected God and refused to offer up his son and still been saved? Remember, James said Abraham was “justified” by offering up Isaac on the altar. Jerry says Abraham could have rejected God’s commandment and still been saved. :confused:

4. Does God change the way He deals with man for salvation?

However,the "revelation" of God that one must believe in order to be saved has changed throughout history.And it is those who believe God,no matter what that "revelation" may be,who are justified in the sight of the Lord:

So, is that a yes? Good, we agree… Next, Jerry asks me some questions…

RESPONSE TO JERRY’S QUESTIONS

You do not seem to believe that the word "eternal" in the following verse means "without end,never to cease,everlasting.":

"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son"(1Jn.5:11).

I use the definition given by a Greek expert,and by using that definition the words of John can mean only one thing-these Jews already possess a life in Jesus Christ that is "without end".

Please give me your definition of the word translated "eternal" (aionios) and we will insert that meaning in the verse at 1Jn.5:11 and see what you think that John is saying.

Jerry, I know what the word eternal means. aionion means eternal or agelong. What you fail to realize is, they possessed “eternal” life if they met God’s conditions. I have already responded in full above. Now, I know you’ll ask why I believe that body of Christ has “eternal life” present tense. The answer is, when we express our faith in the way God asks (believe in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ), the Holy Spirit seals us for the day of redemption (Eph 1:14; 4:30). Circumcision believers do not have this sealing, and can fall away. If they fall away, they lose eternal life. Again, their possession is conditional. Next Jerry asks,

Also,the following words seem to indicate that for the Jews "faith" in Jesus Christ is what brings about "eternal life":

" For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life"(Jn.3:16).

Would you please give me your interpretation of the meaning of those words?

Again Jerry, this is conditional for them. If they believe in Him, they have eternal life. If they stop believing in Him, they lose their eternal life. Here’s a quick example…

John 8
30 As He spoke these words, many believed in Him.

It seems that these men have met the requirements of John 3:16. They believed in Him. They should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 8
31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.

Uh oh, it seems that Jesus adds to John 3:16. Jesus implies that they need to abide in Him in order to be His disciples. I thought they just had to believe? :confused:

John 8
32 “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
33They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will be made free’?”

These men are descendants of Abraham and obviously have some knowledge of the God of Israel.

John 8
34 Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.
35 “And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever.
36 “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.
37 “I know that you are Abraham’s descendants, but you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you.

Wait a second… They believed in Christ. According to Jerry, the instant they believe in Him, they possess eternal life. :confused: But now, they seek to kill Him? The word He spoke, that they believed, now has no place in them?

John 8
38 “I speak what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have seen with your father.”
39 They answered and said to Him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham.

More troubles Jerry. Jesus tells them that if they were true followers of God, and Abraham was really their father, they would do the works of Abraham. I didn’t think they needed to “do” anything to show their faith.

John 8
40 “But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this.

Again, these believers now seek to kill Him? Do they still “possess” eternal life Jerry?

John 8
41 “You do the deeds of your father.” Then they said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father—God.”

They even defend the fact that they follow God. I thought having faith in God was enough.

John 8
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me.
43 “Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word.
44 “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.
45 “But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.
46 “Which of you convicts Me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me?
47 “He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God.”

These believers have fallen away faster than they believed. They possessed eternal life, and have lost it. To answer your question Jerry, John 3:16 must be interpreted the same was John 10:28 and 1 John 5:11 are interpreted. Understand that God sets forth conditions for the circumcision believers.

QUESTIONS FOR JERRY

1. Did the man in Numbers 15:32 go to hell?
2. Does Hebrews 10:26-29 refer to people who were sanctified by the blood of Christ, and then fell away?
3. Do you stand by your interpretation of Ezekiel 18? Is it referring to “physical life and death” only?
4. Did David deserve death for the sins he committed?
5. Did Noah build an ark for salvation? Could Noah have refused to build the ark and still be saved?
6. Did the men in John 8 lose their “eternal life” that they possessed when the believed in Christ?

Still waiting for you comments on James…

God Bless, --Jeremy Finkenbinder
 

Turbo

Friendly Neighborhood Admin
LIFETIME MEMBER
Hall of Fame
DING, DING, DING.... that's it for round #2.

Jerry Shugart is now on the clock as round three has begun!

Readers: Who do you think is winning so far? Vote here!


ANY AND ALL POSTS ON THIS THREAD WILL BE DELETED UNLESS THEY ARE POSTED BY: Me (Turbo), Knight, Jerry Shugart, or *Acts9_12Out*.
You may discuss Battle Royale VIII here.
 
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Jerry Shugart

Well-known member
Round III

If we are to believe Jeremy's interpretation of the words of James concerning "justification by works" then we must also believe that at first Abraham was justified before God by "faith" alone,and then later it took "faith plus works" and then later he was once again justified by "faith" alone but then at the end he was justified by "faith plus works"!!!If that makes sense to you then you will probably be able to throw your reason to the wind and believe anything that Jeremy says,no matter how ridiculous.Let us examine Jeremy's teaching.He said:
In Genesis 15:6, Abram "believed" his seed would be like the stars of the sky.
Yes,and at that point the Scriptures reveal because Abraham believed it "it was counted to him for righteousness"(Gen.15:6).Faith alone!Jeremy continues,saying:
Unfortunately, Abram had a "flesh trip" and attempted to fulfill God's promise on his own. Due to lack of space, I ask that our readers look to Genesis 16 to follow along. In short, Abram "went into Hagar" (Gen 16:4) and she bore to him Ishmael when he was 86 years old. Ishmael was not the "promised" son. Abram fell out of favor with God, so God responded with a physical requirement to show Abram's faith.
So here Jeremy is saying that now "works" were required.Next,after Abraham was circumcised we see that Abraham believed the Lord when he was told that Sarah would bear him a son (Gen.17:15-19).And at that point Paul makes it plain that Abraham was justified by his faith:

"And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: 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"(Ro.4:19-22).

So we see that according to Jeremy Abraham was justfied by "faith" alone,and then later "faith" by itself was not enough as "works" were required (circumcision) and then once again "faith" was sufficient without "works" (Ro.4:22).And now Jeremy says that later "faith" in itself was not sufficient and once again "works" were required (James 2:24).

So if we are to believe Jeremy then we can see that Abraham's justification went from "faith alone" to "faith plus works" then back to "faith alone" and then once again "faith plus works"!I have never seen such "confusion",and "God is not the author of confusion"(1Cor.14:33).This "confusion" is a result of man's inability to understand the words of James.

How can we reconcile the words of Paul that Abraham was justified by "faith" alone-"to him that worketh not but believeth" with the words of James where he says "what is the profit if a man say he hath faith,and have not works?"?

First of all,the words of Paul in the epistle to the Romans are essentially "doctrinal",while the words of James are essentially "practical".Paul's epistle unfolds the mind and purposes of the Lord while the epistle of James addresses men upon their own ground.The argument concerning "faith" in the epistle of James is between men:

"Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works"(Jms.2:18).

If James was making "doctrine" then we would expect to read:

"If a man have faith…",but instead we read,"If a man say he hath faith…"In this case the argument is not about man's "faith" in regard to God,but instead the argument is how a man can know whether or not another man has a true "faith".

The Lord does not need outward demonstrations to know whether or not anyone has a true "faith":

"…the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart"(1Sam.16:7).

The Lord knows the "heart" of man,but men can judge only by appearances.A man cannot show another his "faith".However,if a man truly believes then his faith will declare itself by results.And James uses Abraham as an example of this principle.And we can see by the words of James that he is not speaking of "faith" plus "works",but instead he is only speaking of a true faith:

"Seest thou how faith wrough with his works,and by works was faith made perfect?And the scripture was fulfilled which saith,Abraham believed God,and it was imputed to him for righteousness"(Jms.2:22,23).

So the argument of James is not that some men must provide "faith" plus "works" in order to be saved is not supported by Scripture.If James was teaching that "faith" plus "works" were required then he would not have used a verse to speaks only about "believing".

Abraham believed,and the Lord declared that he was righteous.He acted,and man acknowledged he was righteous.So then in one sense a man is justified by faith without works and in another sense we see "how by works a man is justified,and not by faith only".Justified by faith before God;justified by works before men.

But some will say that the Scriptures never speak about one's "justification" before men.However,the following verses prove just the opposite:

"And he said unto them, Ye are they who justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God"(Lk.16:15).

"Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity"(Mt.23:28).

If Abraham was justified by "works" then he would have something of which to "boast" or "glory" before God.But this is what Paul says about the "work" of Abraham:

"For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness"
(Ro.4:2,3).

Justified by faith before God;justified by works before men.

If we want to know the teaching of James as to how the Jewish believer is saved all we have to do is to go to the following verse:

" Of His own will begot He us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures"(Jms.1:18).

I have already pointed out that the Scriptures reveal that the Jewish believers were "born again" (the same thing as being "born of God" and "born of the Spirit"),but Jeremy remains silent on this point.Peter says,"Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever"(1Pet.1:23).

This born again experience comes upon all those who "believe God",no matter what that Revelation is.And that new brth is not a result of "works" because John makes it plain that the birth of God is not accomplished by the "will of the flesh":

"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:Who 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).

The Jews did not understand this until Paul was converted and he revealed a "righteousness of God" which is "apart from law" and comes upon ALL who believe:

"But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;Even the righteousness of God which is by the faithfulness of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them who believe"(Ro.3:21,22).

Jeremy is forced to say that this righteousness of God apart from law comes unto only "some" who believe and not "all who believe".

Next,let us examine what Jeremy says in regard to the "salvation" under "the Law".He seems to think that "physical" death equals "spiritual" death.In fact,he writes hundreds of words to attempt to prove this but he falls short of his goal.If we examine the teaching of Paul in regard to the Christians who sin presumptuously we can see that the Lord might put them to death "physically" but they will remain saved nonetheless.Here are his words in regard to the Christian who was living with his father's wife:

" To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus"(1Cor.5:5).

The Lord will chasten his "sons" (those "born of God"),but he will not send his sons to hell.There were some in the church at Cornith who were participating in the Lord's supper in an "unworthy" fashion.Paul says that for this reason many of them are "sick" and some have been put to death.These Christians lost their "physical" life when they were chastened by the Lord,but they remained saved eternally nonetheless:

" For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world"(1Cor.11:30-32).

These Christian's who are put to death "physically" but they do not lose their "eternal salvation".But Jeremy thinks that the "physical" death under the Law is in reference to a "spiritual" death that lasts forever.As I have already demonstrated,those who lived under the Law and "believed" were eternally secure:

"For the LORD loveth justice, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever"(Ps.37:28).

Jeremy quotes the following verse that is in reference to one's "own righteousness":
"And the LORD commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as it is at this day.And it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the LORD our God, as he hath commanded us"
First,we can see that these verses are speaking about "physical" life-"that He might preserve us alive,as it is at this day.".Next,the "righteousness" of which this verse speaks is in regard to "our righteousness",and not the "righteousness of God apart from the law" that comes unto ALL who believe.Here is what the prophet Isaiah says about "our righteousness":

" But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags"(Isa.64:6).

Perhaps Jeremy can explain how "our own righteousness",which "are as filthy rags",can save anyone eternally?If the Jew would keep all the statutes then they would not lose their "physical" life.But this law keeping saved no one "eternally",as witnessed by the words of Paul:

" 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"(Ro.3:20).

Despite these words of Paul Jeremy continues to insist (by using a false interpretation of James) that works of the Law do indeed justify the sinner before the Lord.Jeremy continues to attempt to prove that keeping the Law was in regard to "eternal" salvation by quoting the following verse:
Psalm 19:7a
7a The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul
Yes,and in this case "the Law" can indeed convert one into living a "physical" life that brings rewards.That is what Paul means when he says:

" But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them"(Gal.3:11,12).

What does Paul mean in regard to "living" in the Law?:

"This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success"(Josh.1:8).

The Law is "not of faith",but the man who lives a life guided by the Law will have good success in the "physical" sphere.So Jeremy has not even provided one verse that proves that the "death" spoken of in "the Law" is in regard to "eternal" life.He just cannot seem to understand that "the Law" was but a "shadow" or "type" of things in regard to "eternal" salvation (Heb.10:1).

Now,let us once again examine the words of Paul in regard to David,a man who was justified by God "apart from law":
" But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
6 Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,
7 Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.
8 Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin"
(Ro.4:5-8).
In response,once again Jeremy offers no explanation at all how his idea that David was justified before God by "works" can be reconciled by the words of Paul in regard to David that he was justified before God apart from works-him that worketh not.

Jeremy says that he does not want to "overwhelm" me,but the only things that are beginning to overwhelm me is his "evasion" in regard to what Paul says.Jeremy says nothing whatsoever concerning the fact that Paul uses David as an example of one who is justified before God apart from works,or as one who worketh not!

Instead of addessing those words of Paul,he attempts to prove that Paul must be wrong when he says that the Lord will not impute David's sins to him.Paul uses David as an example,saying,Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin"(v.8).Jeremy says:
If David did not deserve death because "God does not impute iniquity," why did God still punish David by taking his son?
Jeremy reveals that he cannot differentiate between the "physical" (or temporal) and the "spiritual" (or eternal).At Romans 4:5-8 Paul is speaking about "spiriual" or "eternal" things.In regard to David.And in regard to the believers "eternal" standing before God the Lord will not "impute sin" to his account.

However,the death of David's son is in regard to "physical" things.The Lord will indeed impute sins in regard to the physical things of man.Paul says that a Christian who continues in sin will be "chastened" of the Lord.This is in reference to the "physical" life of the believer-"if we should judge ourselves,we should not be judged.But when we are judged,we are chastened of the Lord"(1Cor.11:30,31).

David was being "chastened" by the Lord by imputing his iniquity to his account by taking the life of his infant son.This is in regard to the "physical" sphere and not in regard to the things of the "eternal" sphere.In the eternal sphere he does not impute the sins of the believer.And in regard to "eternal salvation" Paul says that it is the believer who worketh not who is justified by the Lord.

Perhaps this time Jeremy will answer how he reconciles the words of Paul in regard to the man who worketh not with his idea that the Jew could not be saved apart from "working".

Next,let us examine Jeremy's response to the verses I provided that demonstate beyond any doubt that the Jewish believers did in fact possess "eternal security".I pointed out that those who were given to the Lord Jesus by the Father would be raised up the last day:

" And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day"(Jn.6:39).

Jeremy seems to be under the impression that it was in the Father's will that none should be lost but the Lord Jesus did not do the will of the Father because Judas was lost!Imagine that!Jeremy seems to think that the Lord Jesus came into the world to do the Father's will but He failed.Jeremy offers up the following verse which he does not understand in order to attempt to prove that the Lord Jesus did not do what the Father willed.Jeremy says:
Jerry says Christ "did not lose any" that the Father gave Him. The Father gave Judas to Christ, and Judas was lost.

John 17
12 "While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.

Judas is another example of one who "possessed eternal life," fell away, and went to hell.
Sir Robert Anderson,the father of Mid-Acts dispensationalism,has this to say about the words at John 17:12:

"This clearly implies that one of Christ's God-given ones may be finally lost. But the words the Lord actually used admit of a wholly different meaning. According to Bloomfield - and upon a question of Greek there is no higher authority - "ei me is for alla when a negative sentence has preceded." And when words admit of different meanings, one of which is in accordance with, and the other in opposition to, other Scriptures, we must always accept the former. We cannot doubt, therefore, that in this passage the Lord used ei me in the same sense as in Luke iv. 25 - 27.

In the famine of Elijah's day there were many widows in Israel, but to none of them was the prophet sent ; but (ei me) he was sent to a woman of' Sidon. There were many lepers in Israel in Elisha's day, but no one of them was cured ; but (ei me) Naaman the Syrian was cured. In these passages the ei me does not introduce an exceptional case within the specified category, but a case belonging to a wholly different category. As Dean Plumptre puts it tersely, it is not an exception but a contrast (Ellicott's N.T. Commentary). To quote yet another instance, we read in Revelation xxi. 27, that there shall in no wise enter into the holy Jerusalem anything unclean. or he that maketh an abomination or a lie. But (ei me - in marked contrast) they who are written in the Lamb's book of life shall enter there.

Now, let us read our present verse in this way, ignoring a punctuation which is arbitrary "Those that Thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost ; but (ei me) the son of perdition is lost, that the Scripture might be fulfilled." And when thus read, the Lord's words, instead of casting a doubt upon the truth that all His God-given ones are safe, becomes a signal confirmation of that truth."(Anderson,"Misunderstood Texts of the New Testament",p.69).

So according to Greek experts Judas is not an "exception" to the group described as being given to the Lord Jesus by the Father,but instead he belongs to a group who were not given to the Son by the Father.But some people will attempt to use this verse to support their ideas even if it casts a doubt on the work of the Son in regard to doing the Father's will.In other words,they would rather say that the Lord Jesus did not do the will of the Father so that they can attempt to prove that those who were given by the Son by the Father could in fact be lost!

Next,in regard to the meaning of the word "eternal" Jeremy says:
Jerry, I know what the word eternal means. aionion means eternal or agelong.
Agelong?

So Jeremy must think that this "agelong" life which the Jewish Christians already possessed must only be in reference to the "age" in which they were living.Actually,I can find no Greek experts who say that the word "aionios" is only in regard to one "age" or another "age".But I did not expect Jeremy to give a meaning that is approved by the Greek experts as I did.If he did give an approved meaning then he knows that the Jewish believers already possessed a life in Jesus Christ that can never end:

" And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son"(1Jn.5:11).

But Jeremy is not through.He says that even though these Jewish believers already possessed a life in Jesus Christ that is "eternal" that they could lose this "eternal" life:
If they fall away, they lose eternal life. Again, their possession is conditional.
Again,Jeremy fails to even address the following words of the Lord Jesus when He says that those who already possess "eternal" life shall never perish:

" And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish"(Jn.10:28).

The Lord Jesus says that those who have been given "eternal life" (as those who received John's first epistle) "shall never perish".But Jeremy offers no explanation for the words of the Lord and says that they can indeed perish!Next,I asked Jeremy to give me his interpretation of the following words:
" For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"(Jn.3:16).
Jeremy says:
Again Jerry, this is conditional for them. If they believe in Him, they have eternal life. If they stop believing in Him, they lose their eternal life.

First of all,those who believe the "truth" in their hearts will forever continue to believe the "truth":

"...all they that have known the truth;For the truth's sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever"(2Jn.1,2).

However, Jeremy goes about to prove that there were some who "believed" in Him but later they went out to kill Him.But Jeremy fails to realize that there were many who "believed in Him" who never believed in their hearts.He says that I say that those who the Lord described as having the devil as their father possessed eternal life:
They believed in Christ. According to Jerry, the instant they believe in Him, they possess eternal life. But now, they seek to kill Him? The word He spoke, that they believed, now has no place in them?
Jeremy knows full well that I never said such a thing.In previous discussions with Jeremy I stated that it is only those who believe in their "hearts" possess eternal life.These Jews never believed in their hearts.Both Paul and the Lord Jesus makes a distinction in regard to understanding and believing in one's "heart" (see Mt.13:15;Ro.10:10).

There were some who are described as His "disciples" and "believed in His name" but who were never "born of God".Here is a Scriptual passage which describes such men:

" Now when he was in Jerusalem at the passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did.But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men"(Jn.2:23,24).

The Lord Jesus will indeed "commit Himself" to all those who have been "born of God",but these men did not believe in their "heart" and therefore they were not "born of God".And it is no coincidence that the verses that immediately follow are in regard to the teaching that a man must be "born of the Spirit" before they can enter into the Kingdom.

So the pharisees that the Lord Jesus described as having the devil as their father never believed in their heart.Jeremy thinks that these men did in fact possess eternal life.He says:
These believers have fallen away faster than they believed. They possessed eternal life, and have lost it.
It seems as if Jeremy will believe anything,no matter how ridiculous,in order to cling to his false ideas that those who "shall never perish" can indeed perish.

He says that those who believed "possessed eternal life" but they could in fact perish.But that is not what the following verse states:

" For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"(Jn.3:16).

Now to your questions:
1. Did the man in Numbers 15:32 go to hell?
Only the Lord knows the answer to that question.However,if he "believed God" then he was a "saint" of God,and this is what the Lord says about those who are His "saints" in the OT:

"For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever"(Ps.37:28).
2. Does Hebrews 10:26-29 refer to people who were sanctified by the blood of Christ, and then fell away?
Yes,but again the "punishment" that is handed out to those people is not in regard to "eternal" punishment but instead to "temporal" punishment.After all,the author of Hebrews tells these Jewish believers the following:

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

These same Hebrew Christians are told that they are being sanctified,and those who are being sanctified are "perfected forever"(Heb.10:14).

So the warning in regard to sinning presumptuously is in reference to the "temporal" state and not to the "eternal" state.
3. Do you stand by your interpretation of Ezekiel 18? Is it referring to "physical life and death" only?
Yes,and you have given no evidence to the contrary.
Did David deserve death for the sins he committed?
Yes,David deserved to be put to death "physically".However,the moment he "believed God" he was "born of God" and became one of the "saints" of the Lord.And as I have already demonstrated,His OT "saints" were "preserved forever".
5. Did Noah build an ark for salvation? Could Noah have refused to build the ark and still be saved?
Again,the Scriptures reveal that he recived a "good report" with God based on his "faith" alone:

" Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.For by it the elders obtained a good report"(Heb.11:1,2).

The Scriptures reveal that Noah received a "good report" with the Lord based soley on his "faith".You say that it was more than faith,that it was "faith" plus the "obedience of faith".But that is not what the Scriptures say.
6. Did the men in John 8 lose their "eternal life" that they possessed when the believed in Christ?
These men never believed in their "hearts" and were never "born of God".Therefore,they were never saved to begin with so they could not lose something that they never possessed.

Now let me ask you a few questions,Jeremy.You said:
Concerning 1 Peter 1:9, Jerry consults "Thayer's" dictionary. Suffice to say, "Thayer's" is not authoritative in any way. Jerry, the Greek word teloV means "end." The word is used 32 times in the NT, and means "end."
1.Are we supposed to believe that the word translated "end" in the following verse is in regard to "something coming to an end",as you suggest?:

" Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned"(1Tim.1:5).

And I find it interesting that you said nothing concerning the fact that the word "receiving" is in the "present" tense and not in the "future" tense as your reading of the verse would suggest.

2.Why should we believe you when you say that those who have been given "eternal life" can perish despite the fact that the Lord Jesus says that they "shall never perish"?

3.Do you really believe that the people whom the Lord Jesus said had the devil as their father were ever in possession of eternal life?

4.Are you ever going to attempt to reconcile the fact that Paul uses David as example of someone who is saved "apart from works" ("to him that worketh not") with your idea that in order to be saved David had to do works?

5.Do you really believe that Abraham was first justified by "faith" alone but later he was saved by "faith plus works" and then later it was once again by "faith" alone and then later it was by "faith plus works"?

6.Do you believe that one who is "born of God" can become "unborn"?

7. The Scriptures reveal that those who are "born of God" and becomes the "sons of God" will be treated as "sons" by the Lord (Heb.12:5-11).He may "chasten" them,but do you believe that the Lord will send them to hell for sinning?

8.If the Lord God can still save men despite the "sin" of killing the Lord Jesus Christ,what "sin" might it be that they Lord will not forgive in regard to His own sons?

In His grace,--Jerry
 

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Round III

POSITIVE CASE CONTINUED:

For Round III, I will offer only one positive case since we already have many unresolved issues... With that said, here we go! :thumb:

Peter was a circumcision Apostle. Peter sat at the feet of our Lord Jesus Christ who was "born under the law to redeem those under the law.

Galatians 4:4b-5a
4b God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,
5a to redeem those who were under the law,

Christ was sent for his lost sheep.

Matthew 15
24 But Jesus answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Christ commanded Peter to continue preaching justification by faith works, even after the resurrection.

Matthew 28
20 “teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

How does Peter respond? According to Jerry, Peter must have been preaching justification by faith alone. Let's see what Peter does...

In Acts 10, Peter receives a vision from God. While he is on the rooftop praying, the Holy Spirit comes to him, telling Peter to "doubt nothing."

Acts 10
19 While Peter thought about the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are seeking you.
20 “Arise therefore, go down and go with them, doubting nothing; for I have sent them.”

Peter receives the three men who have been sent by Cornelius. Cornelius was a Roman Centurion (Gentile). Peter follows the men from Joppa to Caesarea to meet Cornelius. Peter, a circumcision Apostle under the law makes this statement:

Acts 10:28
28 Then he said to them, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean.

Now I ask... If Peter was preaching the same "message" as Paul, why does Peter say it is unlawful for him to be there? Peter is following the instructions of our Lord Jesus Christ. Peter, however, does not know that God started the body of Christ in Acts 9 with the uncircumcision Apostle, Paul. Back to our point... Peter says it is unlawful for him to be there. Jerry hopes that Peter will preach a wonderful message of "faith alone" to these Gentile belivers. What does Peter preach to them?

Acts 10
34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.
35 “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.

Now I ask you Jerry... Is this how you got saved? Me neither. As stated before, Peter was preaching the only message he knew. "Fear God and do works of righteousness to be accepted by God." Where did Peter learn this conditional message? From the Lord Jesus Christ. Peter says it is unlawful for a Jewish man to keep company with or to go to one of another nation. Peter went because the Holy Spirit commanded him to go and doubt nothing! When Peter arrives, what message of salvation does Peter preach? “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.

I will cut this portion short, and have more positive case building in Round 4. I have lots of questions for Jerry...

QUESTIONS FOR JERRY

For this round of "questions," I will try to do some housecleaning. I have made numerous points that Jerry has failed to respond to. I hope to recap, and will end up re-asking many questions.

In Round 1, I showed that the context of James 1:25-2:26 was clearly referring to the Mosaic Law. I ask again,

1. Jerry, is the context of James 1:25-2:26 referring to the mosaic Law?

James 1
1:25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.
James 2
2:8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you do well;
2:9 but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
2:10 For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.
2:11 For He who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
2:12 So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.

Instead of responding to the context of James 1:25-2:26, Jerry goes into a rant concerning Abraham. Here’s what Jerry does say when he finally comments on James:

First of all,the words of Paul in the epistle to the Romans are essentially "doctrinal",while the words of James are essentially "practical".Paul's epistle unfolds the mind and purposes of the Lord while the epistle of James addresses men upon their own ground.The argument concerning "faith" in the epistle of James is between men:

This is Jerry’s opinion. Jerry provides no support for us to believe that James’ writings are not doctrinal. I wonder how Jerry has the ability to discern between what is “practical” and what is “doctrinal” in this case. Jerry seems to have the Spiritual gift of Knowledge… Next, Jerry says,

Abraham believed,and the Lord declared that he was righteous.He acted,and man acknowledged he was righteous.So then in one sense a man is justified by faith without works and in another sense we see "how by works a man is justified,and not by faith only".Justified by faith before God;justified by works before men.

Jerry also argues that James is speaking of Justification before men. Jerry, I must ask, what “man” was on Mount Moriah with Abraham for him to be justified before? Abraham was justified before God when he offered us Isaac on the altar.

2. Jerry, why did the sect of the Pharisees who believed argue that the Gentiles who were turning to God needed to be circumcised and keep the Mosaic Law?

Next, Jerry asked me about Peter’s comments in Acts 15:11. I clearly showed that Peter’s statement referred to Jews and Gentiles being “saved” in the same manner, namely faith in God.

Acts 15
15:8 So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us,
15:9 and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

I asked Jerry why the sect of the Pharisees who believed were under the impression that the Gentiles who were turning to God needed to be circumcised and keep the Mosaic Law,”

Acts 15
15:5 But some of the sect of the Pharisees who believed rose up, saying, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses."

…to which Jerry replied,

The "works of the Law" were indeed necessary for "salvation",but that salvation is not in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead in regard to "temporal" or "physical" salvation.When a Jew committed a sin that was punishable by "physical" death he could bring an "offering" to be killed in his place.The Mosaic Covenant was never in regard to "eternal salvation" but instead was only in regard to temporal things:

Again, I wonder how Jerry is able to discern between “temporal” and “eternal” salvation. Maybe it’s that gift of Knowledge again… What I find interesting is, in this context (Acts 15:1-20), Jerry wants to apply Acts 15:11 as “eternal” salvation for Jews and Gentiles, but says Acts 15:5 is “temporal” salvation. Jerry’s point in the Round 1 was that Jews and Gentiles are “saved” in the same way. By Jerry’s line of reasoning, Acts 15:11 can only refer to “temporal” things. Is this what you think Jerry? Again, I ask Jerry to respond to the context of Acts 15 and the Pharisees arguments.


3. Jerry, why is “will be supplied” in the future tense?

I asked Jerry to respond to the following:

Notice Jerry, if the elect of the circumcision are diligent to “make (their) call and election sure” they will never stumble. An entrance will be supplied into the everlasting kingdom. “Will be supplied” is the word epicorhghqhsetai which is a Future Passive Indicative Third Person Singular. Their entrance is future tense and is dependant upon their “making their calling and election sure” and “never stumbling.”
Jerry, if the circumcision believers “possess” eternal life, why do they need to make their calling and election sure? Why is their entrance into the everlasting kingdom a future event dependant upon their “never stumbling?”

4. Jerry, why do circumcision believer need to “keep on confessing” their sins?


I asked Jerry about 1 John 1:9. This is how he responded…

He goes back to the first chapter in order to find a "condition" that he can apply to an "unconditional" statement four chapter later.However,the verse he quotes (1Jn.1:9) is in regard to the believer's "fellowship"(v.6) with the Lord and not in regard to one's "eternal salvation".If we confess our sins,or "judge ourselves",then we will not be chastened by the Lord in our "walk" or "fellowship" with Him.The following words are written to those in the Body of Christ:

I ask again, how does ”He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, relate to “fellowship” and not salvation? Jerry is wrong again. 1 John 1:9 is referring to salvation, not fellowship. That’s what forgive us our sins is all about Jerry. Maybe Jerry’s gift of Knowledge is kicking in again…

5. Could Noah have refused to build the ark, been killed in the flood, and still been saved?

I asked Jerry if Noah could have rejected God’s command to build the ark and still “posses” eternal life. Here’s how Jerry responded:

The words in the Hebrews says that Noah received a good report before the Lord because of his "faith" and there is no mention of his "works":

" Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.For by it the elders obtained a good report"(Heb.11:1,2).

Noah was justified by his "faith" even before he built the ark.The author of Hebrews says nothing about Noah obtaining a good report because of his "obedience of faith".

To which I responded:

Really Jerry? You must have overlooked Hebrews 11:7
Hebrews 11
7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.

Isn’t this what I’ve been saying all along? Noah showed his faith by doing a physical act. Hebrews 11:7 agrees Jerry! Noah “prepared and ark for the saving of his household.” Now, I know Jerry will try to say that Noah was saved only physically, but the author of Hebrews contrasts Noah’s work and saving with the condemnation of the world. Noah was saved, and those who died in the flood went to hell.

How does Jerry respond in light of this “new” information to him?

Again,the Scriptures reveal that he recived a "good report" with God based on his "faith" alone:

" Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.For by it the elders obtained a good report"(Heb.11:1,2).

The Scriptures reveal that Noah received a "good report" with the Lord based soley on his "faith".You say that it was more than faith,that it was "faith" plus the "obedience of faith".But that is not what the Scriptures say.

I guess I need to be more clear. Jerry, how do you respond to Hebrews 11:7 which clearly shows Noah built the ark (a physical act) by faith, for the saving of his household? Why does the author of Hebrews contrast Noah’s faith work with the condemnation of the world if it referring to “physical” things only?

6. Did the man in Numbers 15, who was cut off completely, his sin upon him, go to hell?

I took time to exegete Numbers 15 for Jerry. The information provided seems to have gone unnoticed. I clearly showed that a man picking up sticks on the Sabbath Day was completely cut off and died in his sin. When I asked Jerry about this man, Jerry said:

Only the Lord knows the answer to that question.However,if he "believed God" then he was a "saint" of God,and this is what the Lord says about those who are His "saints" in the OT:

"For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever"(Ps.37:28)

Again, I guess I need to be more clear. Jerry, did the man in Numbers 15, who was completely cut off, with his sin upon him, go to heaven or hell? I find it interesting that Jerry has this magic gift of Knowledge and is able to tell us what is “doctrinal” and what is “practical” but is unable to tell us the fate of a man who died in his sin. Later, Jerry is able to tell us the fate of men who believed in Christ and says they never believed in their hearts. How does Jerry know about those men, and not the man in Numbers 15?

7. What the heck is going on in Hebrew 10:26-29?

I showed Jerry how Hebrews 10:26-29 directly related to the man in Numbers 15. I asked Jerry to deal with the text, and this is how Jerry responds:

Yes,but again the "punishment" that is handed out to those people is not in regard to "eternal" punishment but instead to "temporal" punishment.

I really don’t know how to be more clear on this one. Here’s what Hebrews says… I’ll let our readers decide if Jerry’s “temporal” explanation cuts it or not…

Hebrews 10
10:26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

Why would “temporal” salvation need a sacrifice for sins Jerry?

Hebrews 10
10:27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.

How does “a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries relate to “temporal” things only?

Hebrews 10
10:28 Anyone who has rejected Moses' law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.

If they reject Moses’ law, they expect that judgment and fiery indignation? Maybe that’s just a temporal judgment and fiery indignation, huh Jerry?

Hebrews 10
10:29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

They were sanctified by the blood of the covenant Jerry. I’ll ask you the same question the author of Hebrews asks… “Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy?” Please respond…

8. Jerry, do you stand by your interpretation of Ezekiel 18?

I asked Jerry specific questions about my exegesis of Ezekiel 18. Here’s how Jerry responds:

Yes,and you have given no evidence to the contrary.

Either Jerry didn’t read my Post, or Jerry is an outright liar. I hope for the former… I ask our readers to return to my Round 2 post to see if I have “given any evidence” to the contrary. Secondly, I would ask Jerry what benefit a “wicked” man, who is already physically alive, would receive for turning to God. If Ezekiel 18 is to be understood “temporally,” and not “physically,” then we must conclude that the “wicked” man who turns to God will continue living temporally. Please respond to my points in Round 2 Jerry…

9. Did the men in John 8, who believed in Christ lose their eternal life?

Again, I offered a complete exegesis of the middle portion of John 8. I showed that certain men, after hearing Jesus speak, believed in Him. According to Jerry’s formula, based in John 3:16, these men “possessed” eternal life when they believed in Christ. Only after Christ challenges them, and they “no longer believe” in Him, do they lose their salvation. Here’s how Jerry responds:

These men never believed in their "hearts" and were never "born of God".Therefore,they were never saved to begin with so they could not lose something that they never possessed.

Again, I wonder how Jerry has this special gift of Knowledge to know the heart state of those men who believed in Christ. Jerry is able to tell us that these men were never saved, but is unable to tell us what happened to the man in Numbers 15. :confused: Jerry understands that he has a problem, so he puts a band-aid on his problem passage and says, “Well, they didn’t really believe in their hearts.” Again, I implore our readers to return to my Round 2 and make an educated decision on their own. I ask Jerry to return to John 8 and explain how he knows that those specific men “didn’t really believe in their hearts” even though God’s Word says they believed in Christ, and then fell away.

10. Jerry, could Abraham have refused God’s everlasting covenant of circumcision, been cut off, and still been saved?

Genesis 17
7 “And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you.
14 “And the uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant.”

Again, I offered substantial proof that Abraham and his descendants were required to keep God’s everlasting covenant of circumcision. Jerry fails to respond yet again. Secondly, I ask Jerry to explain how an everlasting covenant could not be followed. Why isn’t God’s everlasting covenant still applicable today Jerry? What does evelasting mean to you?

11. Jerry, did the children of Israel need to keep the Mosaic Law in order to be righteous?

I provided Jerry with a portion of Scripture from Deuteronomy 6.

Deuteronomy 6
24 ‘And the LORD commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is this day.
25 ‘Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the LORD our God, as He has commanded us.’

For some reason, Jerry didn’t like this passage. Jerry again resorts to his special gift of Knowledge and reinterprets for us. Here’s what Jerry had to say:

First,we can see that these verses are speaking about "physical" life-"that He might preserve us alive,as it is at this day.".Next,the "righteousness" of which this verse speaks is in regard to "our righteousness",and not the "righteousness of God apart from the law" that comes unto ALL who believe.Here is what the prophet Isaiah says about "our righteousness":

" But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags"(Isa.64:6).

Perhaps Jeremy can explain how "our own righteousness",which "are as filthy rags",can save anyone eternally?If the Jew would keep all the statutes then they would not lose their "physical" life.But this law keeping saved no one "eternally",

Jerry is able to tell us that this is talking about “physical” life only. Again, I must ask, what is the benefit of keeping the law here? The children of Israel are already “alive” physically. How much more “physically alive” can God make them. I bet Jerry wouldn’t believe this is speaking of eternal life, even if God Himself said so. We shall see…

In Deuteronomy 24, God sets forth a number of commandments for the children of Israel. I ask that our readers look for themselves, and consider Deuteronomy 24:5-13a. This is the list of God’s physical commandments for the people. What happens to those who follow His commandments?

Deuteronomy 24
13 and it shall be righteousness to you before the LORD your God.

Notice Jerry, this isn’t “righteousness for us,” but rather “righteousness to you before the LORD your God." Again, the circumcision believers are to keep God’s commandments, and it will be righteousness for them before God.

12. Jerry, how did circumcision believers “know that they knew” Christ?

I asked Jerry about 1 John 2:

1 John 2
3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.

Here’s how Jerry responds…

All John is saying is that if the believer really knows the Lord in a personal way (through his fellowship with Him) then he will indeed keep the things which are commanded of him.However,he says that someone may say that he really has fellowship with the Lord but if that person's life shows no evidence of that fellowship then that person is not telling the truth.

Then I said,

Sorry Jerry, the passage says “by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.” The passage says nothing about “keeping the things commanded of him.” Again, John’s point was that they know Christ if they keep God’s law.

Jerry did not respond. I ask again Jerry… How did circumcision believers know that they knew Him? Was it by keeping His commandments?

13. Jerry, why did Peter preach “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him. to the Gentiles? Why did Peter say it was unlawful for him to be there?

I have given Jerry 13 questions to respond to. I ask that Jerry respond to each question. I will pick up as much as possible in Round 4 after I make my positive case.

God Bless, --Jeremy Finkenbinder
 

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DING, DING, DING.... that's it for round #3. We're over halfway through Battle Royale VIII as we move into round #4!

Jerry Shugart is now on the clock!


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Jerry Shugart

Well-known member
Round IV

In my very first post in this debate I pointed out that Paul uses the example of David of a man who is justified before God apart from worksto him that worketh not(Ro.3:5).

But Jeremy still refuses to reconcile his view that David was required to do “works” in order to be saved with Paul’s words that it is the sinner who “worketh not but believeth” who is justified before God.He has already had three opportunites to answer,but he still refuses to even attempt to reconcile his ideas with the words of Paul.

In fact,Jeremy did not answer even one of my seven questions despite the fact that I answered all of his.But despite this I will answer the questions that he asked in regard to his “positive case”.
Now I ask... If Peter was preaching the same "message" as Paul, why does Peter say it is unlawful for him to be there? .... Jerry hopes that Peter will preach a wonderful message of "faith alone" to these Gentile belivers.
First of all,I never said that Peter was preaching the same message that Paul preached to the Gentiles.Peter remained under the Law at the time that he spoke to Cornelius.However,that does not mean that Peter thought that he could be justified by the Law before God.And Jeremy says, Jerry hopes that Peter will preach a wonderful message of ‘faith alone’ to these Gentile belivers.

Jerry does not have to “hope” that “faith alone” was preached to them as we can see that Peter was sent there for that express purpose—”who shall tell thee words by which thou and all thy house shall be saved”(Acts11:14).

Here is what Peter said to these Gentiles immediately before the Holy Spirit fell upon them:

” To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins”(Acts10:43).

When Cornelius and his household believed the words concerning the Lord Jesus—that ”God raised Him up the third day” and that it is ”He Who was ordained by God to be the Judge of the living and the dead”(Acts10:40,42)—then at that moment the Holy Spirit fell on them.As Peter said,”God made choice among us,that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel and believe(Acts15:7).

Not one word about anything but “hearing and believing”!But despite this clear Scriptual evidence Jeremy seems unaware that they believed the “good news” and then the Holy Spirit fell on them.

The Acts narrative in regard to Cornelius and his household make it plain that they were saved when they heard and believed the “good news” which was preached to them.Jeremy continues:
What does Peter preach to them?

” Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him”(Acts10:35).
Here Peter is not saying that our own “righteousness” is necessary for salvation (because “our own righteousness” is compared to “filthy rags”--Isa.64:6),but instead he is “describing” those in other nations who are accepted by the Lord.It is their “fear of the Lord” (or have a respect of the Lord) which is the reason why they are accepted of Him.This “fear” or “respect” of God combined with their “conscience”(the law that is written in their hearts”—Ro.2:15) leads them to lead “righteous” lives but this personal righteousness in no way makes them acceptable to Him.As I said,the words of Peter are merely a “description” of those who are found acceptable by Him.The following words of the Lord Jesus is also a “description” of those who will be saved:

”And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life”(Mt.19:29).

Here the Lord is merely “describing” some who will inherit everlasting life.He surely is not saying that a “condition” or “requirement” for eternal life is that one must forsake his family in order to be saved.And Peter is not saying that a requirement of being accepted by Him is one’s “own righteousness”.Peter is merely describing those in other lands who find acceptance in the eyes of the Lord.After all,we know that Cornelius and his household were not saved because of their “own righteousness” but because they heard the “good news” and believed that gospel (Acts11:14;15:7).

So we can see that when we examine exactly how Cornelius and his household were saved we see that Jeremy’s so-called “positive case” is not supported by the Scriptual evidence.Jeremy says:
Christ commanded Peter to continue preaching justification by faith works, even after the resurrection.
Here Jeremy says that the Jews were being taught that they were justified by “faith works” of the Law.But let us see exactly what Paul said to the Jews in regard to justification by the law:

” Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:And by him all who believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses(Acts13:38,39).

Why does Jeremy continue to insist that the Jews were “justified by the law” despite the clear words of Paul that no one is justified by the law?:

” But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith”(Gal.3:11).

It is “evident” to almost everyone but Jeremy.Here is Paul saying the same thing:

” 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”(Ro.3:20).

Jeremy says that the Jews were receiving a message that said that they must be justified by “faith works” but Paul tells them that they “could not be justified by the law of Moses”!

Nonetheless,Jeremy continues to insist that the Jews must be justified by the works of the law.

Jeremy says:
As stated before, Peter was preaching the only message he knew. "Fear God and do works of righteousness to be accepted by God."
Are we to believe that Peter did not know this “message” which was preached to the Jews?:

” For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life”(Jn.3:16).

Not one word about doing any works!

Jeremy knows that this verse is fatal to his idea,so he attempts to change the plain meaning of the Lord’s words.He says that the “tense” of the word “believeth” refers to a “continuous” action of believing.

However,an examination of the “tense” of the word “believe” demonstrates the the word is in the “present” tense (“Present Active Participle”).It does not indicate “continuous” action,as the following verses indicates:

” But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:Who 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).

The word “believe” in this verse is in the “present” tense (“Present Active Participle”) just as in John 3:16.If Jeremy is correct that this “faith” must be continuous then it is evident that those who “believed” would not be “born of God” and become His “sons” until the end of a life evidenced by a “continued” belief.However,we can see that the Jewish Apostles were indeed “born again” before they died:

” Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever”(1Pet.1:23).

The Greek present tense by itself does not convey the idea of “continuity” - nor does its counterpart in English.If someone wishes to express the idea of “continuity” then a special context and/or additional words such as "diapantos" (continually), must be inserted into the text in order to convey the idea of continuous believing. No first century Greek reader or hearer would understand these words to mean to 'continue to believe' without the necessary additional qualifiers to the simple present tense.And that is why the author of Hebrews uses such a “qualifier” in order to express the idea of “continuious action”:

” By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name”(Heb.13:15).

The word “offer” in this verse is the “action”,and it is in the “present” tense.But since this “tense” does not express a “continuous action” the author of these words added the word “continually” in order to say that this “offfering” is to be “continuous”.

If continuous believing is necessary to provide one with a state of not perishing then Jn 3:16 must be changed to read "whoever continuously believes in Him will (future) not perish but will (future) have eternal life."

The words at John 3:16 cannot be denied.The one who “believes” in the Lord Jesus “should never perish”.They will not come into condemnation.The Lord Jesus told the Jews:

” He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life”(Jn.5:24).

Once again the word “believeth” is in the “present” tense (“Present Active Participle”).Those Jews who were “believing” Him when He spoke His words already posssessed a life which the Lord describes as “everlasting”.At the moment they belived Him they are assured that they will not come into condemnation.

Jeremy knows that if the Jewish believers possessed “eternal security” then his idea that “works” were required for “eternal salvation” comes tumbling down like a child’s house of cards.Therefore,he is forced to attempt to prove that those who “believe” and are “born of God” can indeed perish despite the words of the Lord Jesus to the contrary.

And he also seems to be under the impression that the “only” meassage that Peter knew about was in reference to “fearing God” and “working righteusness”.Nothing could be further from the truth!

In my first post,I pointed out that “eternal life” is a free gift,and since it is a gift one does not need to “work” for that gift.Jeremy clearly understands that this Scriptual fact is a HUGE problem since he is arguing that at some point in the past “works” were indeed required for this “free gift”.I asked him the following question:
If “eternal life” is a free gift then why should we believe that works are required in order to acquire that free gift?
Jeremy answered,saying:
I am not saying that “works are required” to obtain that free giftThe question that will be asked I’m sure is, did the “works” in and of themselves “save” anyone. The answer is, no way… The works they did were in no way magical and did not equal salvation. The works they did were an expression of faith. It was a physical expression that God asked them to do to show that they had faith in Him.
Despite the fact that in this debate he is indeed arguing that “works” were required for salvation in previous dispensations he now says that he is “not saying that ‘works are required’ to obtain the free gift” of eternal life!

He attempts prove that he is not teaching that “works” are required for savation by saying that “the ‘works’ in and of themselves did not save anyone.However,he continues to argue that without “works” the Jewish believers could not be saved,but then he turns around and says that these “works” in themselves saved no one!

He says that the “works” they did were just an “expression” of faith.But Jeremy uses the words of James to attempt to prove that the Jewish believers were “justified” before God by “works”—”ye see then,that by works a man is justified,and not by faith only”(Jms.2:24).

So despite the fact that Jeremy knows that the “free gift of eternal life” is not dependent on “works”,he continues to argue that “works” were a necessary expression of faith that the Jewish believer must perform before they could receive the “gift” of eternal life,and he also argues that the Jewish believer must be justified by “works” before God!

Work,work and more work!

But Jeremy expects us to overthrow our reason and believe him when he says that he is not saying that “works are required” to receive the free gift of eternal life!

I answered every single question that Jeremy has asked.But when I asked him seven questions in my last post,he answered none of them!But now he says:
I have given Jerry 13 questions to respond to. I ask that Jerry respond to each question.
I will answer several of his questions in the hope that he will answer mine in his next post.He asks:
1.Jerry,is the context of James 1:25-2:26 referring to the mosaic Law?
It is hard for me to believe that the “perfect law of liberty" is in reference to the Law.Peter calls the Law a “yoke”:

” Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?(Acts15:10).

And so does Paul:

” Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage(Gal.5:1).

Jeremy must think that the “yoke of bondage” is the same thing as “the perfect law of liberty”!

James is saying that the “perfect law of liberty” (grace through faith) enables us to fulfill the “royal law” (the Law—“thou shalt love thy neighhbor as thyself”;Jms.2:3):

”Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law”(Ro.3:31).

James is saying that if they treat a rich man with respect but a poor one with disrespect then they “are become judges with evil thoughts” (2:4) because they have “respect of persons” (or are playing favrites) and therefore they are committing sin (v.2:9) and under the law that they are supposed to be fulfilling they are “transgressors”.So he says to do as one under the “perfect law of liberty” and they will fulfill the law.

Jeremy continues,saying:
Jerry also argues that James is speaking of Justification before men. Jerry, I must ask, what “man” was on Mount Moriah with Abraham for him to be justified before?
All the “men” who read the passages in regard to Abraham offering up Isaac on Mount Moriah are aware that Abraham did indeed perform a righteous act.There are many men who are aware of his righteus act because the Scriptures speak of it in more than one place.Perhaps Jeremy is under the impression that one had to be with Abraham when he performed the righteous act before they can recognize that it was indeed a righteous act!Jeremy also says:
Instead of responding to the context of James 1:25-2:26, Jerry goes into a rant concerning Abraham.
Jeremy forgets that I said that if one is really interested in the teaching of James concerning salvation then all they have to do is to go to the following verse:

” Of His own will begot he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures”(Jms.1:18).

Both the Gentile believers as well as the Jewish believers are “regenerated” when they believe the Word of God.But Jeremy conveniently says nothing about this answer of mine in his “fair and balanced” debating style.It must have just slipped his mind!And of couse when asked questions about the “born again” experience he has no answers!

Jeremy asks:
Jerry,why do circumcision believers need to “keep on confessing” their sins?
To remain in “fellowship” with the Lord.I answered you previously by pointing out that we too should judge ourselves so that we will not be judged by the Lord:

" For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world"(1Cor.11:31,32).

But Jeremy says::
We don’t judge ourselves… But, if we did, we still would not be judged.
Jeremy might consider the words of the father of Mid-Acts dispensationalism,Sir Robert Andeson,in regard to this subject:

”For the believer who sins against God to dismiss the matter by ‘the blood cleanseth’,is the levity and daring of antinomianism.For such the word is,’If we confess our sins’:no flippant acknowledgement with the lip,but a solemn and real dealing with God;and thus he obtains again and again a renewal of the benefits of the death of Christ. '‘He is faithful anf just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”(Anderson,”The Gospel and Its Minisry”,p.177).

There is a lesson that an be learned in regard to the time when the Lord Jesus washed the feet of Peter.Peter said,”Lord,not my feet only,but also my hands and my head”.To which the Lord Jesus said,”He that is washed needeth not except to wash his feet,but is entirely clean"(Jn.13:10).

The ”New Scofield Study Bible” says this about these words of the Lord:

”The underlying imagery is of an oriental returning from the public baths to his house.His feet would acquire defilement and require cleansing,but not his body.So the believer is cleansed as before the law from all sin ‘once for all’ (Heb.10:1-12),but needs throughout his earthly life to bring his daily sins to the Father in confession,so that he may abide in unbroken fellowship with the Father and the Son (1 Jn.1:1-10).The blood of Christ answers forever to all the law could say as to the believer’s guilt,but he needs constant cleansing from the defilement of sin.”(Note at John 13:10).

Now that I have answered several of Jeremy’s questions despite the fact that he answered none of mine,I hope that in his next post that he will finally answer these questions:

1.Why should we believe you when you say that those who have been given "eternal life" can perish despite the fact that the Lord Jesus says that they "shall never perish" and that they "shall not come into condemnation"?

2.Do you really believe that the people whom the Lord Jesus said had the devil as their father were ever in possession of eternal life?

3.Are you ever going to attempt to reconcile the fact that Paul uses David as example of someone who is saved "apart from works" ("to him that worketh not") with your idea that in order to be saved David had to do works?

4.Do you really believe that Abraham was first justified by "faith" alone but later he was saved by "faith plus works" and then later it was once again by "faith" alone and then later it was by "faith plus works"?

5.Do you believe that one who is "born of God" can become "unborn"?

6. The Scriptures reveal that those who are "born of God" and become the "sons of God" will be treated as "sons" by the Lord (Heb.12:5-11).He may "chasten" them,but do you believe that the Lord will send them to hell for sinning?

7.If the Lord God can still save men despite the "sin" of killing the Lord Jesus Christ,what "sin" might it be that they Lord will not forgive in regard to His own sons?

8. Do you really believe that the Lord Jesus came to do the will of the Father but that He failed?

I hope that you will answer these questions in your next post.

In His grace,--Jerry
 

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Round IV

I must say, I am a bit disappointed with Jerry. Jerry had 48 hours to post, but chose to respond before even 12 hours had passed. Jerry had over 36 hours left to focus on pointed questions I asked, but chose to post quickly. It wouldn’t have been that big of a deal except, Jerry posted so fast he confused himself. :confused: Jerry said,

I will answer several of his questions in the hope that he will answer mine in his next post.He asks:

Jerry said he would answer several of the “housecleaning” questions I asked. After Jerry makes this statement, Jerry answered only three questions! Jerry responded with yet another inconsistent answer to my question about James, but I will deal with that later in this post. After Jerry responded to my positive case question (which needs to be addressed as well) and answered two of the twelve remaining questions, Jerry has the audacity to say,

Now that I have answered several of Jeremy’s questions despite the fact that he answered none of mine,I hope that in his next post that he will finally answer these questions:

Jerry, does several have a different meaning in Mexico? Did you post so fast that you “thought” you responded to several, but responded to only three out of thirteen questions? Jerry, you have some serious explaining to do. Three out of thirteen doesn’t even come close to several.

For Round IV, I will submit yet another positive case, re-ask several questions, and respond to Jerry’s questions.

POSITIVE CASE

As stated in Round III, Jesus Christ was “born under the law” and came “to redeem those under the law.”

Galatians 4
4b God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,
5a to redeem those who were under the law,

Christ’s earthly ministry was for God’s chosen but lost children of Israel, who were under the law.

Matthew 15
24 But (Jesus) answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Paul tells us that Christ was “a servant for the circumcision” for the truth of God.

Romans 15
8 Now I say that Jesus Christ has become a servant to the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made to the fathers,

Mary & Joseph were under the law, and acted accordingly…

Luke 2
21 And when eight days were completed for the circumcision of the Child, His name was called JESUS, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
22 Now when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought Him to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord
23 (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every male who opens the womb shall be called holy to the LORD”),
24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “A pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.”

As was the custom, Jesus was circumcised on the eighth day (Lev. 12:3). The couple was required by the Law not only to have Jesus circumcised (Lev. 12:3), but also to present their firstborn to God (Ex. 13:2, 12) 33 days later and to bring an offering for Mary’s purification after childbirth (Lev. 12:1-8). The offering which they presented for her purification showed that they were a poor couple. They could not afford a lamb, so they bought a pair of doves or pigeons, which were all they could afford. They traveled the short distance from Bethlehem to Jerusalem for the presentation and purification at the temple.

Now Jerry, why would Mary and Joseph go through all this trouble? They were under the law, and God required certain physical acts for salvation. Luke refers to the Mosaic Law as “the law of the Lord,” but Jerry seems to think the “law of the Lord” is a yoke of bondage. If Mary and Joseph would have rejected God’s everlasting covenant of circumcision for their son, then God would have sought to kill them, just like He did with Moses.

Exodus 4
24 And it came to pass on the way, at the encampment, that the LORD met him and sought to kill him.


Now, why would God seek to kill Moses? Moses had not yet circumcised his own son! Moses did not keep God’s Law that started with Abraham in Genesis 17! Jerry believes that God would have killed Moses “physically” but would have still allowed Moses to enter into heaven. Unfortunately Jerry, God required law works for salvation. God’s covenant was everlasting and those who rejected God’s Law would be cut-off completely. How does Moses’ wife respond to save her husband from death?

Exodus 4
25 Then Zipporah took a sharp stone and cut off the foreskin of her son and cast it at Moses’ feet, and said, “Surely you are a husband of blood to me!”
26 So He let him go. Then she said, “You are a husband of blood!”—because of the circumcision.

After Zipporah fulfills the requirement of circumcision, God let Moses go! God set Moses free from the penalty of death. The circumcision of Moses’ son (either Gershom or Eliezer) seems strange. In his years in Midian Moses had neglected to obey God’s command (Gen. 17:10) to circumcise one (or both?) of his sons. So God was about to kill Moses. Zipporah reluctantly circumcised her son with a sharp stone and then God let Moses live. Her touching Moses’ feet with the son’s foreskin was possibly a symbolic act of substitution, in which obedience was seen as replacing disobedience. Zipporah called Moses a "husband of blood." The meaning of this phrase is unknown, but some say it was used in a derogatory way to suggest that she did not favor the rite. (Yet she did it to save her husband’s life.) Others propose that she saw in the act a sort of redemption by which the blood of his son restored Moses to the Lord and also to her as a new husband. At this time Zipporah and the sons may have returned to Jethro (18:2-3). Moses’ sudden illness was a warning that he must obey God wholly and fulfill his mission. Isn’t it interesting Jerry that this incident follows up the emphasis in 4:22-23 on sons (Pharaoh’s son, and Israel as God’s son)? Now, back to our story with Jesus…

Jesus Christ did not come to abolish the law and “usher in grace” Jerry. Christ came to fulfill the law.

Matthew 5
17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.
18 “For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

The righteousness they were currently seeking—that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law—was insufficient for entrance into the kingdom Jesus was offering. The righteousness He demanded was not merely external; it was a true inner righteousness based on faith in God’s Word shown by physically keeping the Mosaic Law. This is clear from what follows:

Matthew 5
19 Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

This follows my point that Jerry failed to respond to in Numbers 15 and Hebrews 10. God set forth His requirements for unintentional sin compared to intentional or presumptuous sins. If they committed unintentional sins, and broke “the least of God’s commandments,” then they would be called “least” in the kingdom of heaven. If they attempted to keep the law by faith, and taught others to do the same, they would be called “great” in the kingdom of heaven. The main point that must be considered Jerry is, Christ warned his followers against breaking even “the least” of the commandments of the law. If law based faith / works were not necessary for salvation, why would Christ warn His followers to keep the law? Another point is, Christ admonished His followers to listen to the scribes and Pharisees who sit in Moses’ seat…

Matthew 23
1 Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples,
2 saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.
3 “Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.

Jesus’ point here is, the scribes and Pharisees have the right message of law works, but are hypocrites when applying the law to their own lives. Christ admonishes His followers to ”observe and do” the works of the law, but do not “do” works the way hypocritical Pharisees “do not do” what they say.

We have two very important accounts in the gospels where two different men approach our Lord Jesus Christ and ask Him how they might inherit eternal life. The topic of discussion in ”Battle Royale VIII” is, “Were Works Ever Required For Salvation?” The following two examples answer the debate topic question for us…

Luke 10
25 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 He (Jesus) said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?”
27 So he answered and said, “ ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
28 And He (Jesus) said to him, “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.”

Notice, Christ told this lawyer to “do this” to inherit eternal life. What did Christ tell the lawyer to do? Keep the Law! The lawyer quotes the Mosaic Law (Deu 6:5; Lev 19:18) and Christ tells him to do those law works by faith to be saved. Next, we have the example of the rich young ruler…

Matthew 19
16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?”
17 So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
18 He said to Him, “Which ones?” Jesus said, “ ‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness,’
19 ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”

Jesus’ response to the question is, ”Keep the commandments.” Jesus goes on to again quote the Mosaic Law. How much clearer could it be Jerry? If Jesus did not truly believe in “faith works for salvation,” He sure was not concerned with sending out the wrong message, now was He Jerry? If Christ did not believe in a “faith / works” program, why would He tell the lawyer and young man a lie? Was Christ attempting to intentionally deceive these men Jerry? Jerry, do you realize that Christ answered our topic question in two separate instances? ”Were Works Ever Required For Salvation?” Jesus answered YES! at least twice. Jesus even commanded His remaining 11 Apostles to do works to show that they had faith. If they did not continue in their good works, they would suffer the same fate as Judas.

John 15
1“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.
2“Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
3“You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
4“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
5“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
6“If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.

Judas’ betrayal is already complete. Christ knew the instant satan “entered Judas” and is now speaking to the remaining 11 only. If they do not “bear good fruit” and “abide in Him,” they will be withered, gathered, thrown into the fire and burned.” As stated before, Christ commanded the 11 to “continue teaching” everything He taught them. After the resurrection, Christ told the 11:

Matthew 28
20 “teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age (aiwnoV).” Amen.

Just a side note: Jerry was critical of my definition of aiwn as “agelong” in a previous post. What must be noted is the word translated “age” in the above passage is aiwnoV. The word does mean “age” or “agelong” Jerry. In fact, Hebrews tells us that Christ was “manifested” at the completion of at least two “ages” Jerry.

Hebrews 9
26 He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, aiwnwn He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.

Yes Jerry, ages end, and another age always begins. A valid definition of aiwn is “agelong.” Back to our story…

Peter was a faithful servant and followed Christ’s commands. I would like to ask again Jerry… Why did Peter say it was ”unlawful” for him to be at a Gentile’s home? Secondly, I raise the same point as raised with Christ above. If Peter did not believe in a “faith plus works” program, why did he make the following statement?

Acts 10
35 “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.

Peter, like Christ, did not seemed concerned with leading people astray if Jerry’s interpretation is correct. Peter clearly understood that under the gospel of the circumcision, faith was demonstrated by doing good works. I still have many more comments, but will cut this post short as well so that I can respond to Jerry’s questions.

RESPONSE TO JERRY’S QUESTIONS

Jerry opens with a response to my question about Peter.

First of all,I never said that Peter was preaching the same message that Paul preached to the Gentiles.Peter remained under the Law at the time that he spoke to Cornelius.However,that does not mean that Peter thought that he could be justified by the Law before God.

A couple questions and a point here. If Jerry recognizes that Peter and Paul are preaching different messages, then what does Jerry believe the difference in their message to be? If Peter is “under the law” then why are we still discussing the issue? What was the point of Peter keeping the law (but Paul did not) if Peter’s “faith works” did not accomplish something? Since Jerry recognizes that Peter was under the law when he went to a Gentile, doesn’t it follow that it was unlawful for Peter to be there? Doesn’t it follow that Peter would preach a “works oriented” message? (Acts 10:35)

Jerry does not have to “hope” that “faith alone” was preached to them as we can see that Peter was sent there for that express purpose—”who shall tell thee words by which thou and all thy house shall be saved”(Acts11:14).

This contradicts what Peter actually said Jerry. As stated before by me, Peter argued that the hearts of the Gentiles were “justified by faith” in the same way the circumcision believers hearts were “justified by faith.” This in no way implies “faith alone.” Peter said, “Whoever fears God and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” Peter is arguing that, just as circumcision believers are “justified by keeping the law by faith,” Gentiles are also “justified by faith.” Peter does not understand, nor allude to what Gentiles “have faith in.” Peter argues that they are saved by faith, just as circumcision believers are saved by faith. This validates my premise in Round I that God changes the way He asks man to show faith. Circumcision believers are “justified by faith” by keeping the Mosaic Law by faith. As Jerry rightly noted in the event with Cornelius, Gentile believers were “justified by faith” when they heard the message of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. God showed that His requirements for salvation changed by saving Cornelius and his household before Peter could go on with his message of Repent and be baptized… Peter states that this is the case. After Peter departs from Caesarea and returns to Jerusalem, “those of the circumcision contended with Peter.

Acts 11
1 Now the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.
2 And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those of the circumcision contended with him,
3 saying, “You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!”

4 But Peter explained it to them in order from the beginning, saying:

This explains why it was unlawful for Peter to be there. Peter defends himself and recounts what happened in Caesarea (Acts 11:5-14). Peter’s next comment clarifies that he was just starting to preach to them. Before Peter could say ”Repent and be baptized,” God interrupted Peter and saved the Gentiles.

Acts 11
15 “And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning.

Peter was just getting started when God interrupted him! Peter continues defending himself…

Acts 11
16 “Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’
17 “If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?”
18 When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, “Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life.”

Peter argues that “it wasn’t his fault,” he was doing what God told him to do. Isn’t it interesting that the circumcision believers also recognize a division between the “circumcision” and the Gentiles? Jerry never responded to this fact either. Jerry offers his interpretation of Acts 10:35…

As I said,the words of Peter are merely a “description” of those who are found acceptable by Him.The following words of the Lord Jesus is also a “description” of those who will be saved:

”And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life”(Mt.19:29).

Here the Lord is merely “describing” some who will inherit everlasting life.He surely is not saying that a “condition” or “requirement” for eternal life is that one must forsake his family in order to be saved.And Peter is not saying that a requirement of being accepted by Him is one’s “own righteousness”.Peter is merely describing those in other lands who find acceptance in the eyes of the Lord.After all,we know that Cornelius and his household were not saved because of their “own righteousness” but because they heard the “good news” and believed that gospel (Acts11:14;15:7).

Jerry, you totally missed Christ’s point. You seem to believe that Christ is implying “turning their backs on” their own families. You said, “He surely is not saying that a “condition” or “requirement” for eternal life is that one must forsake his family in order to be saved.” You’re right… Christ didn’t say this. This follows the answer given to the rich young ruler. Peter doesn’t understand what has transpired after Christ told the young man to sell all his possessions and follow Him.

Matthew 19
27 Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?”
28 So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
29 “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life.
30 “But many who are first will be last, and the last first.

In the previous incident Jesus told the rich young man to sell all he had and follow Him. This was exactly what the disciples had done, as expressed by Peter. “We have left everything to follow You! What then will there be for us?” The young ruler did not leave his possessions (v. 22), Peter and the other disciples had. Surely then, Peter reasoned, God would bless them for they were not trusting in their wealth! The Lord explained there would be a renewal of all things. Though the nation was then rejecting His offer of the kingdom, the kingdom would come. Christ will then sit on His glorious throne (Matt. 25:31; Rev. 22:1).
The disciples will have a special place in the kingdom, sitting on thrones and judging the 12 tribes of Israel. How can they be in the body of Christ Jerry? Christ’s point was not that they “forsake” their families, but rather, all who leave their homes and relatives for the Lord’s sake will receive physical blessings that will more than compensate for their losses (Matt. 19:29). While it might appear they are giving up everything now and are the last, they will be given everything eternally and will be first. Conversely those, like the rich young ruler, who appear to have everything now (the first) will discover one day they have lost everything (they will be last). Jerry continues,

Here Jeremy says that the Jews were being taught that they were justified by “faith works” of the Law.But let us see exactly what Paul said to the Jews in regard to justification by the law:

Why does Jeremy continue to insist that the Jews were “justified by the law” despite the clear words of Paul that no one is justified by the law?:

It is “evident” to almost everyone but Jeremy.Here is Paul saying the same thing:

Jeremy says that the Jews were receiving a message that said that they must be justified by “faith works” but Paul tells them that they “could not be justified by the law of Moses”!

Didn’t you just say that you recognized that Peter was under the law, but Paul was not? Why use Pauline references to prove a point about circumcision believers? :confused: Do you see your own theme here Jerry? Every reference to justification by faith apart from works comes from the uncircumcision Apostle, Paul?

Are we to believe that Peter did not know this “message” which was preached to the Jews?:

” For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life”(Jn.3:16).

Not one word about doing any works!

Peter understood the words of Christ in light of the conditional circumcision gospel. Christ later admonished the 11 Apostles to “bear good fruit” and “abide in Him.” Let Scripture interpret Scripture Jerry.

Jeremy knows that this verse is fatal to his idea,so he attempts to change the plain meaning of the Lord’s words.He says that the “tense” of the word “believeth” refers to a “continuous” action of believing.

I never commented on the Greek of John 3:16, so your points are meaningless. You accuse me of saying something I did not say. Maybe if you took a little longer to post, you would have all your ducks in a row and stop launching false accusations (and answer several more questions).

Jeremy knows that if the Jewish believers possessed “eternal security” then his idea that “works” were required for “eternal salvation” comes tumbling down like a child’s house of cards.Therefore,he is forced to attempt to prove that those who “believe” and are “born of God” can indeed perish despite the words of the Lord Jesus to the contrary.

That’s a big “IF” Jerry. Maybe we would have more to discuss if you would have responded to Hebrews 10:26-29. Here’s one more for good measure…

2 Peter 2
20For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning.
21For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them.

They “escaped” the pollutions of the world through an experiential knowledge of Jesus Christ. Were these men saved Jerry? If they are “again entangled” in the things of the world and are overcome, ” the latter end is worse for them than the beginning.” Why is “the latter end is worse for them than the beginning” Jerry? In the “beginning” they would still have the opportunity to be saved. How do we know this? “For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them.” The circumcision gospel is conditional and must be understood as such Jerry. These men “knew” Christ, fell away and were lost. Jerry continues,

Despite the fact that in this debate he is indeed arguing that “works” were required for salvation in previous dispensations he now says that he is “not saying that ‘works are required’ to obtain the free gift” of eternal life!

How many times are you going to misrepresent me Jerry? You even posted my quote in context this time! As I said before, I say again… Circumcision believers were justified by keeping the law by faith. God’s requirement for salvation for them was to show their faith by keeping the law. Please do not misrepresent me again Jerry.

I answered every single question that Jeremy has asked.

Yet more lies… One of the three out of thirteen questions Jerry does respond to follows with his comments…

1. Jerry, is the context of James 1:25-2:26 referring to the Mosaic Law?
It is hard for me to believe that the “perfect law of liberty" is in reference to the Law.Peter calls the Law a “yoke”:
And so does Paul:

Then James must have been mistaken when he quoted the Mosaic Law.

James 2
8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well;
11 For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
12 So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.

It seems that there is much that is “hard for Jerry to believe.” Jerry, is James calling the “Royal Law” and the “Perfect Law of Liberty” the Mosaic Law or not?

All the “men” who read the passages in regard to Abraham offering up Isaac on Mount Moriah are aware that Abraham did indeed perform a righteous act.There are many men who are aware of his righteus act because the Scriptures speak of it in more than one place.Perhaps Jeremy is under the impression that one had to be with Abraham when he performed the righteous act before they can recognize that it was indeed a righteous act!

Jerry, the point remains. If you say Abraham was justified before men, what “men” was he justified before? It was God alone that he was justified before…

Jeremy forgets that I said that if one is really interested in the teaching of James concerning salvation then all they have to do is to go to the following verse:

” Of His own will begot he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures”(Jms.1:18).

Jerry forgets that just 7 verses later, James speaks of justification by law works… I also asked,

4. Jerry, why do circumcision believer need to “keep on confessing” their sins?
To remain in “fellowship” with the Lord.I answered you previously by pointing out that we too should judge ourselves so that we will not be judged by the Lord:

I ask again, how does ”He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, relate to “fellowship” and not salvation? Jerry is wrong again. 1 John 1:9 is referring to salvation, not fellowship. That’s what forgive us our sins is all about Jerry.

1.Why should we believe you when you say that those who have been given "eternal life" can perish despite the fact that the Lord Jesus says that they "shall never perish" and that they "shall not come into condemnation"?

I have answered this already Jerry. They “have been given eternal life, shall never perish and shall not come into condemnation” as long as they remain faithful. The men described in 2 Peter 2 had an experiential knowledge of Jesus Christ. They possessed eternal life. If they would have remained faithful, they would “have never perished, and not entered into condemnation.” They fell away, “became again entangled and overcome,” and lost their salvation. This idea mirrors the men in John 8 that you supposedly know the heart state of. This idea mirrors the man in Numbers 15, which you do not know the heart state of…

2.Do you really believe that the people whom the Lord Jesus said had the devil as their father were ever in possession of eternal life?

They did not have the devil “as their father” until after they stopped believing. They said that Abraham and God were their Fathers. When they first believed, they possessed eternal life. When they rejected Christ, they lost their salvation.

3.Are you ever going to attempt to reconcile the fact that Paul uses David as example of someone who is saved "apart from works" ("to him that worketh not") with your idea that in order to be saved David had to do works?

Jerry, I already answered this too. Paul uses David as an example of a man under the law who God did not impute iniquity. David deserved physical and spiritual death for his sin, but God spared him. That’s why he is “blessed” compared to the man in Numbers 15 who was not blessed. God enforced His law on the man in Numbers 15. God should have enforced His law on David, but freely chose not to.

4.Do you really believe that Abraham was first justified by "faith" alone but later he was saved by "faith plus works" and then later it was once again by "faith" alone and then later it was by "faith plus works"?

I never said that. I would however say that Abram / Abraham’s salvation was conditional. Why would God continue “testing” Abraham’s faith if Abraham was eternally secure?

Genesis 22
1 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.”
2 Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”

Does God test your faithfulness Jerry? Of course not. We, as members of the body of Christ, are eternally secure (Eph 1:14; 4:32).

5.Do you believe that one who is "born of God" can become "unborn"?

If a circumcision believer is “born again” and falls away, then he loses his salvation (John 8, 2 Peter 2, Hebrews 10, etc).
6. The Scriptures reveal that those who are "born of God" and become the "sons of God" will be treated as "sons" by the Lord (Heb.12:5-11).He may "chasten" them,but do you believe that the Lord will send them to hell for sinning?

Yes. See the passages cited above that you have not responded to.

7.If the Lord God can still save men despite the "sin" of killing the Lord Jesus Christ,what "sin" might it be that they Lord will not forgive in regard to His own sons?

Those who killed Christ committed a sin of ignorance.

Acts 3
14 “But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,
15 “and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses.
17 “Yet now, brethren, I know that you did it in ignorance, as did also your rulers.

Because it was a sin of ignorance, they could still ask for forgiveness. If one of “His own sons” committed a high handed sin, he would not forgive them. If they did not ask for forgiveness, they would not be forgiven.

Mark 11
25 “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.
26 “But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

They had to forgive others in order to be forgiven. We, in the body of Christ should forgive because we have been forgiven. Huge difference Jerry.

Colossians 3
13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also.

Yet another “Big Difference” between the two gospels Jerry.

8. Do you really believe that the Lord Jesus came to do the will of the Father but that He failed?

No. When did I ever say this?

QUESTIONS FOR JERRY

1. Jerry, is the context of James 1:25-2:26 referring to the mosaic Law?
2. Jerry, why did the sect of the Pharisees who believed argue that the Gentiles who were turning to God needed to be circumcised and keep the Mosaic Law?
3. Jerry, why is “will be supplied” in the future tense?
4. Jerry, why do circumcision believer need to “keep on confessing” their sins?
5. Could Noah have refused to build the ark, been killed in the flood, and still been saved?
6. Did the man in Numbers 15, who was cut off completely, his sin upon him, go to hell?
7. What the heck is going on in Hebrew 10:26-29?
8. Jerry, do you stand by your interpretation of Ezekiel 18?
9. Did the men in John 8, who believed in Christ lose their eternal life?
10. Jerry, could Abraham have refused God’s everlasting covenant of circumcision, been cut off, and still been saved?
11. Jerry, did the children of Israel need to keep the Mosaic Law in order to be righteous?
12. Jerry, how did circumcision believers “know that they knew” Christ?
13. Jerry, why did Peter preach “But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him," to the Gentiles? Why did Peter say it was unlawful for him to be there?

For the above, please refer to my comments in Round III for clarification.

14. Why would Christ be deceptive and tell the lawyer and young ruler to “keep the law” if Christ did in fact not mean just that?
15. Does 2 Peter 2:20,21 refer to men who knew Christ, fell away, and went to hell?

God Bless, --Jeremy Finkenbinder
 
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