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Regeneration Precedes Faith?

Discussion in 'Bible Study' started by Jerry Shugart, Feb 25, 2013.

  1. There are some Christians who teach that logically a person is regenerated before he believes.

    However, the following verse demonstrates the 'life" comes as a result of believing:

    "Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name" (Jn.20:30-31).

    Since "life" comes as a result of believing then it is impossible that regeneration precedes faith.
    Major likes this.
  2. Regeneration before faith? Never heard of that teaching. You're point is correct, seems to me.
  3. Hi Rusty,

    That teaching is also known as "Monergistic Regeneration."

    R.C. Sproul, one of the leading Calvinists in the world today, defines that concept in the following way: "When the term 'monergism' is linked with the word 'regeneration' the phrase describes an action by which God the Holy Spirit works on a human being without that person's assistance or cooperation" [emphasis added](R.C. Sproul, What is Reformed Theology? [Grand Rapids: Baker Books], 184).

    Therefore, by this reasoning, since a person plays no part in his regeneration the Calvinists teach that "regeneration precedes faith." They say that God regenerates only those chosen before the foundation of the world. Therefore only those chosen have the ability to believe the gospel and be saved.
  4. I see....not in anyway a Calvinist myself, so I've never been exposed to this theory.
    Lifeasweknowit likes this.
  5. Hi Jerry. I have to correct your first line. There are NO Christians that teach this ;). Anyone who believes God shows favouritsim has more in common with satanism then Christianity.
  6. Drat! that is one less follower I have:cry:
    Silk, Lifeasweknowit and Rusty says Amen and like this.
  7. Frankly, I think we need to be more focused on how we are growing in regeneration than worrying about chronology.
    Rumely, Major, clark thompson and 1 other person say Amen and like this.
  8. I wouldn't say "satanism" as such: they do not see God favoring anyone...at least the stuff I have read (long long ago) of theirs.

    Perhaps you mean "more in common with infidelity, paganism, or heathenism".....where devotees must make ritual to appease there gods, where the "tribe" alone is favoured, chosen or descended from that god.
  9. Agreed. I find too much focus on time, making everything fit into tight little boxes and hierarchy of spiritual event in a person's salvation is a sign of cold formalism and lack of the lack of the warm grace that knows that The Spirit moves as He sees fit.
  10. I though you were Supreme Potentate of the Church of Calvinites, Kiwi Lodge.

  11. KingJ,

    There are many Christians who teach this. Only God knows who truly believes the gospel so I am not willing to argue that Calvinists are not Christians.
  12. I am not going to relent, Jerry ;). The issue for Calvinists to deal with (not me) is there understanding of the extent to which they see God showing preference for some. Teaching or implying that God specially selects some for heaven / no true free-will is a clear sign of satan behind their belief. True free will = Christianity 101!!!! Any opposite or blur on a core Christian truth = satanism 101.

    The subject of free will is simply not in the same league as rapture / head coverings / baptisms / resurrections or even number of wives allowed. It is a disagreement at the highest level! Up there with those who add and take away from scripture. How a mature '''Christian''' can see God as a respecter of persons is beyond me.
  13. :) Yes, I have not got the motivation to go study 'satanism' the religion. Rather implying a belief driven by satan = satansim.
  14. Maybe the term "unchristian" or "ungodly" would be more accurate, KingJ.
  15. KingJ, a person is not saved because of their belief in regard to whether or not God shows preference for some. Instead, salvation comes unto "all" who believes the Bible.

    Besides, the Calvinists say that they have support from the Bible which teaches that God does indeed show preference for some:

    "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love" (Eph.1:4).

    Today one of the chief spokesmen for Calvinism is Dr. R.C. Sproul and he says the following:

    " From all eternity God decided to save some members of the human race and to let the rest of the human race perish. God made a choice--he chose some individuals to be saved unto everlasting blessedness in heaven, and he chose others to pass over, allowing them to suffer the consequences of their sins, eternal punishment in hell" [emphasis mine] (R.C. Sproul, What is Reformed Theology?[Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2005], 141).

    How would you answer Ephesians 1:4 and Sproul's assertions which he thinks is supported by verses like that one?
  16. How is unGodly and unChristian not = satanism?

    Christians following an 'unGodly' belief is the same as Christians following a 'satanic' belief. Not sure why you posting the need to differentiate?
  17. Just plain human error is not always satanism. Unless one thinks all human error is demon driven, which dumps "free will" just as "individual predestination" does.

    Satanism is a belief system, a stylized "religion".
  18. So, well educated people supporting oppression of a race are just in human error? Favoritism is not simply human error. It is demonic! It is satanic! As I said in post #12 it is an extremity. Nobody can call themself a Christian and say God shows favoritism (unless you are a very young and naive Christian). It reminds me of the churches in my country who demonized black people purely because of colour. That is more inline with satanism. Not Christian error, don't you think?

    In post#13 I explain my reasoning.
  19. As my brothers little kid learnt in Sunday school...the devil quotes half truths. Christians are to look at the whole truth. Calvinists fail to zoom out and look at all scripture. Either that or they fail with the dictionary explanation of the popular and very common phrase 'God is no respecter of persons'. God predestines AND God is no respecter of persons. God pre-planned X, Y and Z AND God is no respecter of persons. It is not rocket science. It is Christianity 101.

    Are we not imitating the devil (when tempting Jesus) when we quote "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love" (Eph.1:4). WITHOUT James 2??? It is written 'angels will catch you'....yes well done, you grasp English 101 but fail at Christianity! It is also written that we must not tempt God. Now with something like free will....

    I will get back to you on ''How would you answerand Sproul's assertions which he thinks is supported by verses like that one''.
  20. KingJ....I know you are passionate about this, but there is no need to shout. Caps and bolds and insinuations that others here have failed in "Christianity 101" seems anger driven and accusing. Please relax and discuss as Christ would. Thanks.
    Lifeasweknowit likes this.

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