Lucia's Blog: "IRRESISTIBLE GRACE"
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

"IRRESISTIBLE GRACE"

"But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God....  And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified."  
Acts 20:24, 32


THE GRACE OF GOD VERSUS FALSE GRACE

If a man has a life threatening disease, you do him no favor by holding back the bad news.  Some cancers must be cut out. The grace of God extends to us the true favor of offering us the remedy to the soul-threatening disease called "sin."  It is good news although it pricks our conscience and gives us pain. We do our friends no favors by watering down the demands of God's grace.  Let's investigate the true grace of God as a contrast to the cheap versions offered by the modern doctrines of men falsely called "grace."

The abuse of the Bible word "Grace" frustrates me.  It is amazing how quickly some are willing to abandon some of the most basic Bible truths.  Granted, the letter to the Romans has some difficult passages, but can we not agree at least on the general teaching of the letter?  If we spend a lot of time reading and studying commentaries written by men and burying our noses in useless speculation regarding God's Grace, we are not going to learn anything worthwhile.  These commentaries are dangerous and harmful because they are not sound in doctrine.  They promote a form of denominationalism that allows a minimum of conviction.  The book of Romans is the most misunderstood book in the Bible. They put law in general (rule of action) at odds with the Grace of God as if obedience to the laws of God is irrelevant to receiving His favor.  The fact is that the message of this book is "the gospel is God's power to save."  (Romans 1:16-17).  The Gospel of Grace demands obedience! (Romans 1:5; 6:17-18, 16:25-26).

"Now to him that is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which hath been kept in silence through times eternal, but now is manifested, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, is made known unto all the nations unto obedience of faith."  (Romans 16:25-26)

The purpose of our study will be to prove all things and hold fast that which is good (1 Thess. 5:21). While the Word of God clearly teaches that we are saved by grace (Acts 5:11; Eph. 2:5-8), we disagree in three crucial areas:  
  1. How is God's grace received?  
  2. Is man saved by grace only in the sense that man has no part to play?  
  3. Is it possible for one to fall from grace?  

We must not ignore the definitions, descriptions and Bible applications involved in the doctrine of God's Grace. The twisted speculations of Calvinism are not worth defending.

Calvinism has undeniably influenced and dominated the Protestant world.  It is not easy to remove this influence along with its applications and cardinal points.  According to this prejudice, man is not able (utterly inept) to believe or obey God's grace.   It is tragic that so little is understood about how to gain the favor of God.  It is equally tragic how the subject of God's Grace is distorted,  misrepresented and misinterpreted.  

Despite all this abuse, misuse, misrepresentation and misinterpretation of God's Grace, the apostle Paul asserts the need for not receiving God's grace in vain.  Man may receive or reject God's grace.

 "And working together with him we entreat also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain (for he saith, At an acceptable time I hearkened unto thee, And in a day of salvation did I succor thee: behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation)."   (2 Cor. 6:1-2).

 I would like to start first by giving a definition of salvation by faith and then discuss how it is offered according to God's Word.  Then we can end by correcting Calvinism.  


I.    SALVATION BY FAITH

Without a doubt, man will attain salvation by faith (Rom. 1:17; Gal. 3:11; Heb. 10:38).  However, the popular voices shamelessly add to the Word of God, saying that salvation is "by faith alone."  

  • The Subject of Salvation

Quoting New Testament Scriptures that say that salvation is "by faith" does not prove that man will be saved by "faith alone."  The Scriptures do not say, "faith alone."

The Word of God does not contradict itself.  Unfortunately, many teachers do not handle the Word of God well.  (2 Tim. 2:15).

The subject of salvation is not:  Is salvation by faith?  We agree that salvation is by faith in Jesus (Romans 3:26).  Right?  The real issue is:  Is salvation by faith alone?  

  • Bible Authority

To find the Truth, it is crucial that we accept the correct authority.  Who was given all authority to establish the Truth concerning man's salvation?  The religious leaders or Jesus?

Jesus, our Lord, has all authority (Matt. 28:18).  His authority is hammered throughout the New Testament as revealed by the apostles and inspired prophets.  (John 13:20; 14:26; 16:13; 20:30-31). The Word of Christ (His Law) constitutes the final (Jude 3) and complete (John 16:13) revelation of God to men (Heb. 1:1-2).  
  1. To reject Christ's Law is to reject or deny His authority (His Lordship). 
  2. To reject or deny His Lordship is to bring upon one God's wrath (judgment).  (John 12:48; Gal. 1:8-9; 2 John 9; Rev. 22:18-19).

The Word of God is:
  1. Truth, (John 17:17).  
  2. It is infallible and immutable (1 Peter 1:24-25).  
  3. It equips men for all his spiritual needs (2 Tim. 3:16).  
Therefore, all the uninspired human ways, thinking, and reasoning must be rejected as wholly inadequate or inept to determine the will of God toward men (Jeremiah 10:23; Proverbs 14:12).

We must be willing to examine all Scriptures when searching for the Truth (Acts 17:11) in order to handle it right and be approved of God (2 Tim. 2:15).  We must not twist the Scriptures to our own destruction (2 Peter 3:16) the way those who preach and teach "salvation by faith alone" do.

  • Salvation is Not By Works

Salvation is not by human works, no matter how good or impressive they are.  We are not justified (declared righteous) by a system of morality and behavior invented by man.  No man's philosophy or ideology or alternative system of living can save us.  Why?  Simply because man has no hope of salvation by his works (morals) and because all men have sinned and deserve to be punished because of their lawlessness (Romans 3:10-18; 3:23; 6:23).  Therefore, since all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (the sinner who is lost because of sin) (Romans 3:23) and cannot be saved by his own "works" since he has died spiritually (Eph. 2:1). Therefore he can no longer be justified before God without the blood of Christ which is offered to us by the Grace of God. (Ephesians 2:9).  Even so, grace requires the human response of faith which obeys the Gospel.

In Psalm 32:1-2 David tells us how blessed is the man whom God saves, being justified not for his impeccable life (who never sinned), but because God forgave him.   The apostle Paul explains this beautiful Psalm in Romans 4:6-7.  
"Even as David also pronounceth blessing upon the man, unto whom God reckoneth righteousness apart from works, saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, And whose sins are covered."

There is no greater blessing than to be saved (justified, declared innocent) despite our sin when we obey the Gospel of Christ.  Why?  Because faith in Christ is the only way to salvation ordered by God for the lost (sinners) (Acts 4:12).  Therefore, there is no salvation in anyone else but Christ!  Even if one were to live without ever sinning again, salvation would never be his due (Romans 4:4). God still owes man nothing.  Our due reward is condemnation. That is what we deserve!  We all have sinned! Therefore, we cannot expect to be declared guiltless (justified) before a righteous God (Romans 5:12; 6:23).  

There is no hope of salvation in doing good or charitable works.  The Jews under the Law of Moses could not be justified by their tithing mint, anise, and cumin, nor by fasting twice a week. (Gal. 3:10; Romans 11:6).  No matter how meticulous they might be in keeping the Sabbath, they were lost because they were guilty of sins, just like the Gentiles.  Paul highlights this subject in Romans 3:9. All men (Jew and Gentile) need the Gospel of Christ to be saved (Romans 1:16-17).

Thus, salvation is by obedience to the terms that Jesus has revealed in His Gospel.  (2 Tess. 1:8; John 12:48).  There is no reason to boast or glory in gracious pardon of our merciful God even when we must meet His terms of pardon.  What is there to boast about?  There is no pride in knowing we are lost because of our lawlessness. Had He demanded that we climb the highest mountain to receive that gift, it would still be a gift.
"Where then is the glorying? It is excluded. By what manner of law? of works? Nay: but by a law of faith."  (Romans 3:27). 

  •  Salvation by Faith in Jesus

The man who is lost in sin does not deserve anything, let alone salvation (Romans 4:4).  It is not his "due" for the righteous deeds he has done since he is not righteous (Romans 3:10-20).  Because all men have sinned, no man can be righteous by doing good deeds or living a good moral life.  And since all men have sinned they deserve damnation (hell).  (Romans 5:12; Matt 6:23; Matt. 25:46). Hence, no man deserves salvation because of his "works."

So, who can save us from God's wrath, fury (judgment and hell)?  (Luke 12:5; Romans 2:5-9).

  1. Jesus who provides the only Way to escape the wrath of God, eternal punishment (Acts 4:12).
  2. Jesus who paid the ransom that frees us from eternal damnation, punishment.  (1 Tim. 2:6).
  3. Jesus who suffered the death that brings us peace with God, reconciliation (Isaiah 53:5).
  4. Jesus who is the propitiation for our sins (the burnt offering of mercy for our lawless works). (1 John 2:2).
  5. Jesus who is the solution to our sins (Romans 3:23-26).  
Since,
  • All men have sinned, i.e., they have committed lawlessness (spiritual illegality).  (1 John 2:2).
  • All men can be justified (acquitted of guilt) by believing in Jesus (Rom. 3:24).
  • To believe in Jesus means to obey Him (Heb. 5:9).
  • Jesus is our burnt offering of mercy, the only sacrifice in which there is forgiveness (propitiation).  (1 John 2:2; Rom. 3:25).
  • Man needs to have confidence in Jesus' sacrifice on the cross, faith in His blood (Romans 3:25) to attain God's mercy and forgiveness.
  • God is just because He justifies only the one who has faith (believes) in Jesus (Romans 3:26; John 3:16).

So, man is saved only by seeking Jesus in faith.  This faith in Jesus must be a living faith that leads us to obey from the heart (without questioning) the instructions of Jesus (Romans 5:1).  It is impossible for such faith to be mere mental assent without obedience (works).  (James 2:2).

  • So, What is Faith in Jesus Then?
  1. It is confidence in Jesus and obedience to all of His commandments (2 Thess. 1:8; Hebrews 5:9).  
  2. There is no salvation without faith in Jesus (Eph. 4:20; John 6:51; Acts 4:12).  
  3. This living faith is accompanied by the works of faith (James 2:24-26).

Salvation by faith in Jesus is founded on the Word of God (Romans 10:17) that leads the sinner to obey the Gospel of Christ (2 Thess. 1:8).  There is no justification without obedience to Christ, His Gospel.  Why?  Because,
  1. The sinner needs to hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ to have faith (Acts 8:35).
  2. The sinner needs to believe in Christ (Acts 16:31-34).
  3. The sinner needs to repent of his sins since Jesus will judge him one day (Acts 17:30-31).
  4. The sinner needs to confess his faith in Jesus (Jesus as Lord)  (Acts 8:37; Matt. 10:32).
  5. The sinner needs to obey the Gospel of our Lord and Savior and be baptized for the forgiveness of his sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:37-38).
  6. The sinner must persevere in the doctrine of Christ to live a pure, godly life and have an abundant life of good works (Col. 3:16; Eph. 4:20-21; Eph. 2:10).

It is a tragedy that false teachers have deceived so many into believing the heresy of salvation by "faith alone."  They teach that faith in Jesus is mental assent alone.  According to them, faith is the acceptance of the heart without the repentance and baptism that Peter demanded on Pentecost.  They say, "Salvation is not by works, but by faith, obeying the Gospel is one work. Therefore, this doctrine of obedience is legalism..."  What they willfully ignore is that the apostle Paul declares that God has prepared "works" that He wants us to carry out.  (Eph. 2:10).  
  • God is well pleased when we carry out the works of obedience (Rev. 2:2,5).  
  • Christ teaches us that salvation is not by obedience to the Law of Moses (for the Jews sinned under this Law) nor to any human system of morality invented by any man to live without sin, since we all have sinned and are lost.  
  • Salvation is not by means of any work apart from the glorious Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ that teaches us that we must obey Him to be saved (2 Thess. 1:8; Acts 4:12).

  • Salvation by Grace Through Faith

God's grace cannot be attained without the obedience of faith (Gal. 5:6).  Thus, the Gospel of Christ cannot be separated from the Grace of God with which He teaches all men (Titus 2:11-12).  So much so that the Gospel is called the "Gospel of the Grace of God."  (Acts 20:24).  Man cannot find favor (grace) with God without obedience by faith in Christ.  To reject the Word of God is to reject "the word of His grace."  (Acts 20:32).

To be saved by faith is to attain the mercy of God by obedience to the Gospel of Grace.  All this has been possible through the blood and cruel death of Christ. 
We are ambassadors therefore on behalf of Christ, as though God were entreating by us: we beseech you on behalf of Christ, be ye reconciled to God.  Him who knew no sin he made to be sin on our behalf; that we might become the righteousness of God in him."  (2 Cor. 5:20-21).  

II.    THE GRACE OF GOD

Considering the twisted way the modern teachers use the terms “faith” and “God's Grace,” let us clarify the Bible definition of Grace before we proceed with the study of these crucial issues.  Later we can contrast God’s Grace with the modern concept of  “irresistible grace.”  

  • Definition of Grace
Grace is the "kindness which bestows upon one what he has not deserved."  (Thayer's Greek Lexicon). This well defines God's saving grace as found in the Scriptures.  In other words, the grace of God is His unmerited favor toward sinful man.  His grace comprises all of His unfolded provisions for the salvation of mankind.  These provisions are things that man cannot provide for himself.

The greatest act of the grace of God is His Son's ultimate sacrifice:  
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life."  (John 3:16).

No man can die for himself, thus redeeming himself, and bring about his own salvation.  Why? 
  1. Because man's defiled (spotted) conscience can only be made pure by the blood of Christ (1 Peter 1:19; 3:21; Heb. 9:14).  
  2. It was through Christ's death that He was able to do for man what he could not attain by himself.  This is what Grace is.  And man must respond to the Gospel of Grace if he wants to benefit from the blood of Christ.

The apostle Paul defines, describes and thoroughly explains "the grace of God."  He points out two fundamental constituents of Grace:  
  1. The teaching or instruction of the Gospel of Christ.  (Titus 2:11-12) and
  2. Christ's sacrifice on the cross.  (Titus 2:14).

God gave His only begotten Son for the salvation of all men.  
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."  (John 3:16).  

Paul also says that Christ gave himself for our redemption.  This was an act of grace.  Thanks be to God for His indescribable grace!!!
"Who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds."  (Titus 2:14).

  • The Grace of God and The Gospel 

Before Paul began speaking of Christ's ultimate sacrifice, he declared,

"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age."  (Titus 2:11-12).  
Take note that those who desire to receive the benefits of the grace of God must obey His instructions found in the Gospel.  The grace of God does not annul man's obedient faith, but rather it demands it.

In Acts 20:24, 32 we read that the grace of God is manifested to all men through the instruction or teaching possible only through the "Gospel."  Paul declared this to the elders of Ephesus when he affirmed, "the gospel of the grace of God."  (Acts 20:24).

"But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God....  And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified."  (Acts 20:24, 32).

This text teaches us clearly that the grace of God is conferred or granted only through the Gospel and is inseparable from it.  For this reason, all who reject the Gospel reject the grace.  At the same time, the one who perseveres in the Gospel of Christ persists or continues in the grace of God.

To persevere in the Gospel is to persist or continue in the grace.  It is the same thing.  Take note of what Paul and Barnabas urged the congregation in Antioch of Pisidia  to do after they had heard the Gospel:

"Now when the meeting of the synagogue had broken up, many of the Jews and of the God-fearing proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, were urging them to continue in the grace of God."  (Acts 13:43).
It is undeniable that the grace of God and the Gospel are inseparable.  Why?  Because "we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus.”  (Acts 15:11).  Moreover, Paul declared in Romans 1:16, that the Gospel is "the power of God for salvation."  

As we can see from Acts 15:11 and Romans 1:16 the grace of God and the Gospel are inseparable. Those who teach a certain "grace" without connecting it to the demands of the Gospel are but false teachers that preach a false grace.  

The Bible teaches the will of God to all men, (Titus 2:11), but not everyone will be saved (Matt. 7:13-27).  It is through God's grace that men receive instruction on how to live godly and holy so as to be saved.  The grace of God is a gift that man must accept by responding to it with obedience to God's commands.  All men can easily understand the Gospel of the grace of God.  On the contrary, Calvinism speaks a lot of the "enabling grace," but this is NOT the grace of God, the one the Bible speaks of.  

And according to this same theology, God's grace is miraculously and irresistibly bestowed upon man without any effort whatsoever on man's part, even without man's desire to receive it.  This false doctrine arises out of the false doctrine of total hereditary depravity, i.e., man has been utterly and hopelessly depraved since Adam's fall in the garden. Thus, it is impossible for man to even desire to be saved.  They also assert that man is depraved (corrupted) of all good and is not able to believe. This, of course, contradicts the Bible passages that teach that the Gospel must be preached to all men and that all men must obey it to be saved.  The Gospel of the grace of God is not obscure and mysterious or something inexplicable.  On the contrary, the Gospel must be preached to all men (Matt. 28:19).

The apostles ordained by God carried out this commission that began on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2) where 3,000 souls obeyed the Gospel of the grace of God.   (Acts 2:37-41).  The apostles preached the Gospel not only in Jerusalem but all Judea, Samaria and to the remotest part of the earth (Acts 1:8).  All the cases of conversion in the book of Acts show the efficacy of the Gospel of the grace of God.  Today as well, we are saved by the grace of God when we obey the Gospel.  It is only by the grace of God that we learn how to please God.  Obeying the Gospel of the grace of God demands that we fulfill the terms of salvation as we have discussed above under the heading:  So, What is Faith in Jesus Then?


III.    GOD'S GRACE VS. THE FALSE "IRRESISTIBLE GRACE" OF CALVINISM
  • Calvinism has another "god" (one that is partial, cruel, unjust, has no love, and one that does not desire men to be saved).  
  • Likewise, they have another "Christ."  One who did not die for all men but only for a select group of people. 
  • Moreover, they also have another "Holy Spirit."  One who does not work through the Gospel as we see in the book of Acts of the Apostles.  According to Calvinist Pastors, the Holy Spirit works directly on the heart of sinners to change their character.
  • They also have another "church."
  • Another "religion" not mentioned in the Bible.  
It is no surprise that this "grace" of Calvinism is not in the Bible.  They call it the "enabling grace." A concept that the Bible never mentions.

The Bible teaches us that the grace of God is conditional (Galatians 5:4).  But Calvinism asserts that, 
  • God only gives His grace to His elect (unconditional elect).  
  • And since His elect are born sinners and depraved (corrupted), without any hope of turning to Him, He sends them the Holy Spirit to enter their hearts and stirs them up to know the Truth. 
  • This feeling that awakens man to come to God (says Calvinism) cannot be frustrated, since it will always prompt men to come to God.

The favored Scriptures used to make the argument for "unconditional election" are the following:

  1. John 6:37, 39, 44:  "All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out... This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day...  No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day."
  2. Romans 8:30:  "and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified."

It is clear that the Calvinist, in order to defend himself, says that men not only can resist the grace of God but that they must do it.  The truth is that God does touch the heart of man and convinces him of his guilt to sin but He does it only through the Gospel (2 Thess. 2:13-14).  God entices us but He does not take away our will (Jeremiah 20:7).

Let us consider John 6:37.  
  • What do you think Jesus was implying when He said, "All that the Father gives Me."  
  • How does the Father give it to Jesus?  Jesus provides us with the answer in verse 45, "And they shall all be taught of God. Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father, comes to Me."  
So,
  • It is through the preaching or teaching of the Gospel that we are taught by God.  
  • It is the Gospel truth that compels us to obey the Father since the One who heard the Father (Jesus) tells us that all who hear the Father and learn from Him can come to Christ (God, the Father, gives them to Christ).

This also explains verse 39.  All who obey the Gospel will not be lost by physical death but rather Christ will raise him up on the last day.

Verse 44 makes mention of the word "draw."  So,
  • How is it that God draws man to Himself?  We are drawn to Him simply by Christ's death (John 12:32-33).  
  • The Gospel teaches us that Jesus Christ died, was buried and raised on the third day. 

Therefore,
  • It is only through the Gospel that we are drawn to the Father and given to Christ.  
  • The Gospel is all that we need for our salvation.  
  • We are not drawn by force as the Calvinist claims.
  • But rather we are drawn to God by our own enlightened will when we learn who God is and desire to obey Him from the heart.

This also explains Romans 8:30.  
  • Those who were called through the Gospel (2 Thess 2:14) as revealed by the Holy Spirit and recorded in Scripture and later obey it are the ones that are destined to be transformed into the likeness of Christ.  
  • We are not called by the Holy Spirit entering our heart to countermand miraculously our corrupted nature.

So, after analyzing these texts, what else does the Bible have to say about the grace of God?  It is good to note that the Bible says that grace can be accepted or rejected.  Consider the following Scriptures:

"You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did."  (Acts 7:51)
"See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled."  (Hebrews 12:15)
"and you are unwilling to come to Me so that you may have life."  (John 5:40)

Calvinism ignores Acts 2:38 that tells man what he needs to do to be saved.  On the day of Pentecost when those who heard Peter were pricked in their heart, they asked the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 
  • How did Peter answer?  
  • Did Peter say they did not have to do anything?  
  • Did Peter say to wait for the baptism of the Holy Spirit to speak in tongues?  
  • Did he say that the "irresistible grace" was going to change their heart?  
  • Indeed, what did Peter say?  Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."  So, when are we going to hear this answer given by the Calvinists?

According to Calvinism, man cannot imitate the examples of the apostles in the book of Acts.  Why?  Because man, out of his own will, cannot just hear the Gospel, believe, repent, confess Christ as Lord and be baptized for the forgiveness of sins.  I don't see any example in the book of Acts that supports or defends the position of Calvinism.

It is true that the Holy Spirit came from heaven (Acts 2:1-4).  But, 
  • What did He do?  He came upon the apostles, giving them power to speak other tongues (languages) that they had never learned or spoken before (a miracle). 
  • What was the purpose?  To convince the Jews that the message of the Gospel they were preaching was from God and not from men.

In Acts 8, we read of the work of the Holy Spirit.  But,
  • What exactly did the Holy Spirit do?  He gave miraculous power to the evangelist Philip to cast out uncleaned spirits and to heal the paralyzed and lame (Acts 8:7) so as to convince people to believe the Gospel of grace he was preaching (Acts 8:12).
"But when they believed Philip preaching the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were being baptized, men and women alike."

The Holy Spirit was very much involved with the apostles in the preaching of the gospel, BUT He never worked directly on the hearts of sinners to regenerate them, changing their character, so that they could believe in God.  This false concept was never expressed during the apostles' ministry.

So, 
  • Why did Jesus promise to send the Holy Spirit to them, the apostles?  To guide them in all Truth.
  • How is the sinner made alive?  Calvinism asserts that the Holy Spirit works directly on the heart of the sinner in order to change him and make him alive so that he can believe in God, love Him and do good works.
But the parable of the sower says otherwise, (Matt. 13; Luke 8).  This parable teaches us clearly that life is in the seed and that the seed is the Word of God (Luke 8:11).  Likewise James 1:21 says,

"Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls."  
Moreover, 1 Peter 1:22-23 says,
"Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God."

Calvinism asserts that since man is born corrupted (depraved of all good), God has to send the Holy Spirit to work directly on the heart to regenerate it and change his character, bringing him to repentance.  They claim that this grace is "irresistible," that apart from the will of the sinner, this "irresistible grace" changes him and gives him faith. Once having faith, the sinner can love and do good works.  They say that,
  • This grace is "irresistible" since is the work of the Sovereign God. 
  • Where God is said to be the one working salvation in the individual. 
  • Where faith is declared to be the work of God (John 6:28-29). 
  • Where God appoints people to eternal life (Acts 13:48).  
  • Where being born again is not by man's will but by God's (John 1:12-13).

All this is nothing more than human invention.  It is pure “doctrines of men” (Matt. 15:9).  Why?
  • Because there is no evidence of this false doctrine in the book of Acts of the apostles which is the book of conversions.  
  • Because there is not one example in the Bible that mentions God speaking to men directly in order to work directly on the heart of men to change or regenerate his character.
So,
  • What does the Bible have to say about those who were utterly corrupt?  
  • Did God send the Holy Spirit to them to work a miracle in their heart so that they could change their character?  NOT AT ALL!  He rather,
    • Sent a universal flood.  
    • Sent fire and brimstone.  
    • Sent plagues.  

The Calvinists are filled twisted doctrines to their own destruction.  They must learn to let the Bible interpret itself rather than inventing man-made doctrines.


CONCLUSION

The main purpose of this demonic doctrine of Calvinism is to deny man's free will with the purpose of removing his responsibility and accountability because of his sins.  Rather than accepting responsibility for their voluntarily committed sins, they prefer to blame Adam or their own parents for having inherited sin and for having been born with a sinful or corrupt nature.  What they don't take into account is that sin is an act that is committed (I John 3:4).  Sin is not inherited!  

In an effort to strip man of all responsibility and accountability to sin, they suggest that salvation is only a work of God and requires nothing of man whatsoever.  To support their false argument, they abuse God's grace citing Eph. 2:8-10, ignoring the most fundamental concepts due to their Calvinistic prejudices about salvation in Christ.  

Augustine and Calvin taught the false doctrine of  "total hereditary depravity of man" since there is so much evil in the world.  According to them, the only explanation for so much evil in the world is that man is born corrupt or depraved of all good.  Hence, it was necessary to invent the other points or steps of Calvinism which are presented in the acrostic “TULIP.”  Consider them:

Total Depravity (also known as "Total Inability and Original Sin").
Unconditional Election.
Limited Atonement (also known as "Particular Atonement").
Irresistible Grace.
Perseverance of the Saints (also known as "Once Saved Always Saved").

These five categories do not comprise Calvinism in totality. They merely represent some of its main points.

They also affirm that GRACE by its definition is unconditional which for all practical purposes implies that we don't have to be concerned about whatever terms the Lord might have commanded.   If salvation by grace means to ignore the Lordship of Jesus, then Jesus is no Lord. That doctrine is by its nature LICENTIOUS. Let's not take grace for granted! We must keep on teaching true grace to stop those who abuse it.  We cannot afford to be intimidated by false teachers. 

Are we going to give those who abuse GRACE and its teaching the pleasure of abandoning God's grace?   NOT FOR A MOMENT!   We cannot depend on God's grace to help us overcome SIN if we do not depend on OUR OWN OBEDIENCE to the teachings of GRACE, (Titus 2:11-12).

The Christian must learn to grow in GRACE to have power over SIN.  We are COMMANDED to grow in these qualities to make certain our calling and never stumble. This is the only way we are going to enter the gates of heaven, where our Lord Jesus is, (2 Peter 1:5-11). This is such a great promise and confidence!  We must keep working out our salvation with fear and trembling, since it is God who is working in us, to please Him and do His will.  This gives us such confidence even when we mess up!  (Philippians 2:12).

Like the apostle Paul, we all must press on.  We must live by God's divine standards.  We must allow GRACE to grow and work daily in us in order to have victory over SIN.

With God's grace in mind, let's never forget that His grace has been manifested for our salvation. 
  • This grace through the Gospel equips us with instruction, teaching that we should die to ungodliness and all worldly lusts, to live godly and holy.  
  • This grace teaches and trains us in purity, free of every lawless deed.
  • This grace through the Gospel helps us to appear before God a zealous people equipped for good works.  This is how our Father is glorified. (Titus 2:11-14).  
  • Jesus is our helper through His Gospel of  grace to overcome sin.  
  • He has already defeated him who had power over death, that is, Satan.  
  • Jesus is our deliverer from the slavery of sin through His Gospel of grace.  
  • He gives us the help that we need, through the Gospel of grace, to overcome sin that we may defeat Satan.  
  • He lived and became human like us that He might become a merciful and faithful Priest since He Himself was tempted and suffered like all of us.  In knowing all this, let's never forget that He can come to our help when we are tempted to sin.  Therefore, let us not forget our hope and confidence of deliverance.  
  • Jesus is our High Priest.  (Hebrews 2:14-18).  
  • This is what the GRACE of God is!

It is true that some people think that by keeping certain moral principles they will be good enough to receive eternal life.  Let's not invent our own system of righteousness.  This will never work!  Let's not make the big mistake of establishing righteousness through our own laws, but rather let's establish righteousness through FAITH in Jesus.  

In the Bible, the Law of God refers to the Word of God and NO man can please God while he sets aside, ignores, or disobeys the Word of God.  (Psalm 19 and Psalm 119).

So,
  • When we do not respond to the calling of the Gospel of the grace of God, we desert Jesus who calls us.  
  • When we do not seek to be saved through Jesus, according to His calling through the Gospel of grace, (2 Thessalonians 2:14), the Gospel of Christ, and pursue a different calling, which has been corrupted, we desert Him who called us, (Galatians 1:6-7).  
  • Are we justified or saved by keeping the Law of Moses? OF COURSE NOT.  It is only through FAITH in our Lord Jesus that we are saved and justified, and not the works of the Law.  (Galatians 2:14-16).  
  • Can we fall from GRACE?  The answer is very evident, YES!   If we unyoke ourselves from Christ and seek to be justified by the Law and not through the FAITH of Christ, we have fallen from the grace of God, (Galatians 5:4). 


Grace is not an irresistible force.  One can reject the grace of God as well as receive it, practice it and retain it persevering in it.  Grace is the kindness, love and mercy of God expressed in the Gospel of His Son Jesus.  One must meet all the terms or conditions of the Gospel to receive SALVATION.  

"And working together with Him, we also urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain."  (2 Cor. 6:1)

The man-made system of Calvinism from beginning to end is false.  It is a system of doctrines of men (and Satan!) whose primary purpose is to deceive millions of souls not to obey the Gospel of the grace of God (Romans 10:16; 2 Thess. 1:8; 1 Peter 4:17).

With all this being said let us be wise to differentiate between the Bible grace of God and the false grace of Calvinism!

Thanks be to God for the Gospel of the grace of God, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.  (Romans 1:16)

May all men come to know Him and keep His Word, living by grace and bearing good fruit.  May He help us walk by grace and grow in His grace so that we may have victory over sin.  May we also love the Truth so that we may please God and be saved.  May we learn Christ through grace so that we may walk in the likeness of God, in His righteousness and the holiness of the Truth.  May we also abide in the gospel of grace with all perseverance.  May we beware of false doctrines as well as their false teachers, always abiding in Christ's Truth, striving with all of our heart and soul so that our Father in heaven can perfect our work.  May we stand firm, striving together for the gospel of the grace of God.  May we glorify God for His indescribable grace to us.

"Knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel... Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel; in no way alarmed by your opponents—which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation for you, and that too, from God."  (Philippians 1:16, 27-28)

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