Regeneration

The Biblical Doctrines of Grace (Part One)

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The word grace, from Genesis 6:8 to Revelation 22:21, is a word meaning “graciousness of manner or act” (literally), or “the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life” (figuratively).1

Grace is a special favor bestowed upon an undeserving individual. Thus when a Christian minister quotes Paul as saying, “For it is by grace you have been saved” (Eph. 2:8), he or she means that the one saved was saved not by merit but by grace, undeserved favor. This is how to use the word grace biblically. In this we do not go beyond its clear meaning, nor do we fall short of what the Bible teaches.

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In Defense of the Invitation / Altar Call

, posted by Kevin Jackson

The “invitation” or “altar call” is a common tradition in many “low church” bodies. Invitations to accept Christ are not new, however, the specific form of invitation known as an “altar call” is a relatively new practice. It started with the evangelist Charles Finney, back in the 1830’s. Other evangelists who have popularized the practice include D.L Moody, Billy Sunday, Corrie ten Boom, and Billy Graham.

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Saved By Grace To Faith?

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Is the grace of God which leads a sinner to salvation by faith or to faith? In Scripture it is by faith, in Calvinism it is to faith. The Calvinist incorrectly assumes that God’s grace is directly related to regeneration in order for the sinner to then have faith in Christ (which is also a gift, in the absolute sense).

He is left to conclude that grace for salvation is not by faith but to faith, since salvation and election is by the unconditional choice of God. This “faith” seems to be one of proxy, for it is not the sinner’s faith, but a faith given to him by God. This is an alien faith. It did not derive from the sinner but was (somehow) “planted within” him. The Scripture behind this idea (so admits the Calvinist) is Philippians 1:29, which reads, “For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake” (NASB).

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Does John 6:44 Teach Irresistible Grace?

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf. As I stated in my last post (Does Regeneration Precede Faith?), there is no more important question with regards…

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What Can The Dead in Sin Do?

, posted by Ben Henshaw

Calvinists love to point out that we are dead in sin. That we are dead in sin prior to conversion cannot be denied (Eph. 2:1, 5; Col. 2:13); the question has to do with what it means to be dead in sin.

Calvinist are fond of comparing spiritual death to physical death. This gives them the framework with which to press their theological conviction that regeneration precedes faith. If being dead in sin means that we are as helpless as physical corpses then we are told that we certainly can no more “hear” the gospel or “see” our need for Christ than a physical corpse can hear or see. But is there any justification for such a strict parallel between the spiritual and the physical?

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Is The Drawing of John 12:32 Universal or Particular?

, posted by Patron

Before examining some of the other Calvinists “proof texts” for irresistible regeneration, we will take a moment to deal with a common Calvinist objection to the Arminian appeal to Jn. 12:32 as an example of universal “drawing”.

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Does Regeneration Precede Faith?

, posted by Ben Henshaw

Which comes first, faith or regeneration? That is indeed the question. I cannot think of a more important theological issue with respect to the controversy between Calvinism and Arminianism. It is the defining feature concerning…

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Examining A Rather Strange “Proof Text” For Irresistible Regeneration

, posted by Patron

I believe that I have sufficiently demonstrated that the Biblical ordo salutis (order of salvation) is not that regeneration precedes faith. I gave both a positive argument, and negative arguments (ed.s note referring to the author’s blog). Before moving on to examine the other petals of our favorite little flower, I wanted to give some brief attention to what I believe to be a rather odd proof text often urged by the proponents of irresistible grace.

This argument focuses on the grammar of two related passages in 1 John. James White makes use of these passages in The Potter’s Freedom. He sets up his argument by first quoting 1 John 5:1,

“Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him.”

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Should Grace be Referred to as Regeneration?

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In his book The Potter’s Freedom, James White equates the saving grace of God with regeneration. He writes, “The doctrine of irresistible grace is easily understood. Once we understand the condition of man in sin,…

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Fletcher on Being “Dead in Sin” Part 2

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf. Fletcher demonstrated that the Scriptures use the word “dead” in more than one way, and to understand the term…

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John Fletcher on Being “Dead in Sin”

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf. In my interactions with Calvinists the conversation always seems to go back to their conception of being dead in…

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Point by Point with John Piper on Arminianism

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  This point/counterpoint is inspired from John Piper’s “How I Distinguish Between the Gospel and False Gospels,” a message he delivered at the 2008 Resurgence Conference. I’d like to comment on some of the statements…

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Eric Landstrom, On Regeneration

, posted by Eric Landstrom

Is regeneration a work of God and are the results of regeneration (e.g. repentence, confession) the works of God?

By way of survey regeneration is the inward quickening of the repentant and believing sinner. It is also referred to as the point of transition from being dead to God to being a child of God.

The Greek New Testament uses the Greek equivalent of regeneration (palingensia), meaning “new birth,” or “born again”) only once in regards to conversion (Titus 3:5) but the same idea is expressed using different terms elsewhere (cf., Eph. 2:1; James 1:18; 1 Pet. 1:23). The term is also used by Jesus when he spoke to Nicodemus and the listening crowd when he said, “Marvel not that I said unto thee [Nicodemus], ye [all those listening in the crowd] must be born again.” This idea of being reborn was not a new teaching to the Jews as the prophets of old had foretold of it (Ezek. 36:26, for example).

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