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Sunday, October 14, 2007

Hebrews chapter 6

This is a short exposition of Hebrews chapter 6

The community spoken of in Hebrews were believers. We can see this in Hebrews chapter 2

"We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. 2For if the message spoken by angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, 3how shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. 4God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will."


The author includes himself as one of the ones who can drift away. So to assume that the people spoken of in chapter 6 as nonbelievers would be false for one would have to make the author of the book of Hebrews a nonbeliever as well.

It is most likely that they were Jewish believers.

Hebrews chapter 6 verses 1 & 2 (NKJV)
"1 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment."


The six foundations found in the first couple verses of Hebrews chapter six, seems to be the same as the milk found in the previous chapter.


From verses 1 and 2 we see that the milk/elementary principles are:

1.) foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death

2.) foundation of faith in God

3.) foundation of instruction about baptisms

4.) foundation of the laying on of hands

5.) foundation of the resurrection of the dead

6.) foundation of the eternal judgment



1.) foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death

John talks about the samething when it comes to things that lead to death

1 John 5:16-17
"If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that.All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death."


It seems to me that the "elementary" things Hebrews was talking about had to do with the "initial" things of salvation......Like Repentence.



2.) foundation of faith in God

This letter seemed to be sent to a group of believing Jews so they already had the Gospel preached to them.


Romans chapter 10 shows us how faith comes about.

"14How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!""

and verse 17

"17Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ."


It seems to me that the "elementary" things Hebrews was talking about had to do with the "initial" things of Salvation......Like faith




3.) foundation of instruction about baptisms

This seems to be talking about Water Baptism. Something that Christians go through......even believing Jews

As Prophesied in the Old Testament

Ezekiel 36:25-27
"25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them."

And as seen in the New Testament

John 3:5
"5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God."


Romans chapter 6:3-5

"3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection,"

and

Colossians 2:11-13
"11 In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses,"



Water Baptism was seen as the normal way in which the blood of Christ gets on a person. This is how we are supernaturally and mysteriously united with Christ.

Thus it seems that the text is talking about another initial aspect of salvation.



4.) foundation of the laying on of hands

This seems to be talking about the christian practice of "Confirmation/Chrismation". We see this in Acts where the Apostle layed hands on new gentile believers so that they too can receive the Holy Spirit like they did. Thus this seem like post cross and post ressurection to me.

Acts chapter 8
"16 For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit."

Acts chapter 9
"And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”

Acts chapter 19
"And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied."


The laying on of hands was the norm in which people were Baptized with the Holy Spirit. This is the second half of John 3:5

"5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God."




5.) foundation of the resurrection of the dead


We see Paul preaching this in Acts chapter 17 to pagans. So This too seems like a christian thing in regards to what is tought to those who are new christians or soon to be christian.

Acts chapter 17
""30In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. 31For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.""




6.) foundation of the eternal judgment


This seems to be a christian thing as well. Something new christians are tought....or soon to be christians are tought.So this seems to be am immature christian community not a mature one. This is what it seems like from reading chapter 5 to the first two verses of Chapter 6.





Hebrews chapter 6 verse 4 (NKJV)

"For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit"


This enlightened is probably talking about Baptism, but it could also be talking about a pre or post enlightening as well. As found in Cor chapter 4 and Eph chapter 4.

The Heavenly gift is most likely talking about Communion, or the Lord's table.

Being partakers of the Holy Spirit is talking about being filled with the Holy Spirit. One of the Epistles of Peter talks about being partakers of the Divine Nature.

2 Peter 1:4
"Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires."



Hebrews chapter 6 verse 5 (NASB)

"5and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come,"

Before the invention of the printing press the Word of God was read and people heard it. Infact, good portions of it was memorized. The word of God was presented in the Liturgy itself when the believers gathered to Worship.

The powers of the age to come is still unknown to me at this time. I will have to update this at a later time.

However, with that said to assume that "tasted" means not being real in the first place is false. It's false because one would have to say the samething about the Lord Himself.

For scripture says:

Hebrews 2:9
""But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.""

Did Jesus really die? If so then the context of "Taste" in the Book of Hebrews really means something actually experienced.




Hebrews chapter 6 verse 6 (NASB)

"6and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame."


The "if" clause is not in the Majority text. It is said that Theodore Beza added the "if" in his Text.

Knowing this we know that some did fall away. It wasn't "hypothetical"!


Now what was the difference between those that fell away and those that didn't?

They both repented, believed, was Baptized, had hands layed on them so that they could be filled with the Holy Spirit. They both had communion. They both heard the Word of God and they both were tought about Judgment and the resurrection of the dead.

Well Hebrews tells us in verses 9 to 12

Hebrews chapter 6 verses 9 to 12

"9But, beloved, we are convinced of better things concerning you, and things that accompany salvation, though we are speaking in this way.
10For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints.
11And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end,
12so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises."



What are the things accompaning salvation? It is their work and Love in ministering to the Saints.
The difference was "diligence", the difference was "perseverance". The difference was "unwavering faith and patience".


That was the difference. This is backed up by Hebrews chapter 10 in which a lack of fellowshipping together seems to be deadly to ones faith.

Hebrews 10:24-26

"24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. 26If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left",





INLOVE Jnorm
Thursday, October 4, 2007

What does the word "Catholic" mean?

The word "catholic" to the Orthodox primarily means "Fullness" or "Wholeness".


Thus to us each local canonical Diocese is Catholic, because it has the fullness of the Faith. It is complete. It is whole.


Archpriest John Morris wrote an Article in the Word Magazine that I thought would be helpful.

He said:



"St. Ignatius was the first theologian to use the term
"Catholic," which means full or whole in greek, to describe the church. The
third Bishop of antioch wrote, "Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the
multitude [of the people] also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is
the Catholic Church." Thus, to be truly Catholic, a local Church must operate
under the communion with the other bishops of the Church."


Dr. Father John Morris, The Word magazine volume 51 no.8 page 24 edited by John Abdullah


The word that we Orthodox use for "UNIVERSAL" is "ecumenical". Such as the 7 ecumenical councils which are "UNIVERSAL" as compared to the many local councils which are not. However, the word "ecumenical" has been demonized in modern times because it means something different in today's world that it didn't mean in ancient times.


In the christian west the word "Catholic" primarily means "universal".


JNORM

A short exposition of Romans chapter 9

This is a short exposition of Romans chapter 9

All scriptures came from here

http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/index.php?action=getVersionInfo&vid=31#books




Romans 9:10-13
""10Not only that, but Rebekah's children had one and the same father, our
father Isaac. 11Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or
bad—in order that God's purpose in election might stand: 12not by works but by
him who calls—she was told, "The older will serve the younger." 13Just as it is
written: "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated."





Who does God love? God already told us!!!


Psalm 103:17
"But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children-"

Is Faith a work?


Romans chapter 3:27-28

"27Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith. 28For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law."

and Romans chapter 4

"1What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather, discovered in this matter? 2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness." 4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness."


Not to mention the last few verses of Romans chapter 9

"30What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; 31but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it. 32Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works."


According to SAINT PAUL, Faith is not a work!!! Also since God is love, and has compassion on everything He has made (Psalms 145:9) we know that whenever a text says that God "hates" a person what it really means is that God loves that person less.



So through God's Foreknowledge He called Jacob before the foundation of the World.

God is Omniscient so He knew Jacob would believe in the promise inheretence.

Romans chapter 8 shows us the process of that event.

""29For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.""

God's foreknowledge preceeds both His predestinating and calling.

For those that would like to make "Foreknowledge" a "foreloving" assume that this has nothing to do with the actions of a person, but they assume wrong. To love someone implies action.

Acts chapter 26:4-54

"The Jews all know the way I have lived ever since I was a child, from the beginning of my life in my own country, and also in Jerusalem. 5They have known me for a long time and can testify, if they are willing, that according to the strictest sect of our religion, I lived as a Pharisee.


The Jews knew Paul. To know someone implies to know things about that person. Or else you can't know them. Knowing implies action and moral agents are animated beings not mannequins.

Also if one tries to make "Foreknowledge" = "predestination" then I would say that such a thing in Romans chapter 8 would be tautology(redundant language)

A look at Augustine, Chrysostom, and Theodore in regards to this passage.



Quote:

"Therefore God did not choose anyone's works (which he himself will give) by
foreknowledge, but by foreknowledge he chose faith. He chose the one whom he
knew in advance would believe in him, and to him he has given the Holy Spirit,
so that by doing good works he may attain everlasting life." Belief is our work,
but good deeds belong to him who gives the Holy Spirit to believers."



Augustine on Romans as quoted from the Ancient Christian commentary on scripture, N.T. volume 6 Romans, edited by Gerold Bray page 251




Quote:

"God does not have to wait, as we do, to see which one will turn out good and
which one will turn out bad. He knew this in advance and decided accordingly."



Saint John Chrysostom, Homilies on Romans....as quoted from the Ancient Christian commentary on scripture volume 6, edited by Gerold Bray and Thomas C. Oden page 250





Quote:

"Thus God chose Isaac and rejected Ishmael and the children of Keturah. So also
he chose Jacob over Esau, even though both were formed together in the womb. Why
be surprised then, if God does the same thing nowadays, by accepting those of
you who believe and rejecting those who have not seen the light?"



Theodoret of Cyr: interpretation of the letter to the Romans....as quoted by Ancient christian commentary on scripture edited by Gerold Bray and Thomas C. Oden page 253





Romans 9:14
"14What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! 15For he says to
Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on
whom I have compassion."






The scripture tells us who God likes to have mercy and compassion on so it's no hidden secret that nobody knows.


Psalm 103:13
As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;


Psalm 25:14
The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them.


Psalm 18:27
You save the humble but bring low those whose eyes are haughty.


also

Romans chapter 3:21-22
"21But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe."


God’s choice is not based on human merit, but on His mercy and inscrutable purposes.
Faith is not a merit, Humbleness is not a merit, and fear is not a merit. or else faith wouldn't be faith.....it would be a work.....and we know Paul made a contrast between "faith" and "works". God's purpose was to save those who believe in His Son. That was His choice!







Romans 9:16
16It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's
mercy.





Paul speaks elswhere about us doing stuff and how that relates to what God does.


1 Corinthians 3:5-7
"5Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? 6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.


So as you see Romans 9:16 affirms our free will!!! It doesn't say we can't will or somehow not able to will.......NO!!! It just shows that our desire and effort in and of itself doesn't make us citizens of ISRAEL!!! NO!!! It takes God's mercy!


John says the samething in John 1:12-13

"12Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God."


SEE!!! Our willing alone will not make us born again!!! This verse is not saying we are not able to will, not able to make human decisions nor the husband not able to will......verse twelve shows us willing!!!

This verse is saying the samething 1st Corinth is saying!!! It's saying that it is God who brings the increase!!! It is God who makes us born again!!! It is not saying we are not able to plant!!! It is not saying we are not able to water!!! It is just saying that despite what we do it is what God does that matters!!! It is God who makes us grow!!!


And it is God who makes us Citizens of ISRAEL because it is God who makes us born again!!! So it is not that free will doesn't exist...it's just without God in the mix our free will is nothing!!!


Thus sayeth the scripture!!!

Psalm 127:1
"Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain."


It doesn't depend on the builders labor nor the watchers standing guard but on God's mercy. Thus the same is true with Romans 9:16


A look at what Saints Augustine and Jerome said about this passage





Quote:
"Paul does not take away the freedom of the will but says that our
will is not sufficient unless God helps us, making us compassionate so that we
might do good works by the gift of the Holy Spirit.....We cannot will unless we
are called, and when we will after our calling neither our will nor our striving
is enough unless God gives strength to our striving and leads us where he calls.
It is therefore clear that it is not by willing nor by striving but by the mercy
of God that we do good works, even though our will (which by itself can do
nothing) is also present."


Augustine on Romans from the book Ancient Christian commentary on scripture: New Testament VI Romans edited by Gerald Bray & Thomas C. Oden page 256



Man's Will and Running



Quote:
"It is clear from this passage that the willing and running are ours,
but the fulfillment of our willing and running belongs to the mercy of God. So
it is that free will is preserved as far as our willing and running is concerned
and that everything depends on the power of God as far as the fulfillment of our
willing and running is concerned."


Jerome in the work "Against the Pelagians" 1.5 as quoted in the book Ancient Christian Commentary on scripture New Testament VI Romans page 256 edited by Gerald Bray & Thomas C. Oden






Romans 9:17
17For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: "I raised you up for this very
purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be
proclaimed in all the earth." 18Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have
mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.




This is a form of Prevenient GRACE for God was proclaiming His name thoughout the whole Earth. The more people can know of the God of Abraham the more they are able to fear God.


Thus sayeth the scriptures!!!



Psalm 33:8
"Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the people of the world revere him."

Psalm 102:15
"The nations will fear the name of the LORD, all the kings of the earth will revere your glory"

Psalm 76:12
"He breaks the spirit of rulers; he is feared by the kings of the earth."

Psalm 79:6
"Pour out your wrath on the nations that do not acknowledge you, on the kingdoms that do not call on your name;"


As seen in Psalms 103:13 and 25:14 God makes Himself known to those who fear Him. He also has compassion on those who fear Him as well.

Now in regards to Pharaoh being raised up by God. I will say that we all are raised up by God.

Hebrews chapter 6:7-8 shows us being rasied like crops.

God rasies all

7For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; 8 but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.



Hebrews chapter 4:13 shows how everything is seen by God

God sees all

"13Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account."



And Psalms 33:15 shows how God's Providential hand molds the hearts of "all men".

God molds all

"15 he who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do."



Pharaoh had no excuse as seen in Romans chapter 1

"20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened."


God gave Pharaoh up to uncleanness as seen in Romans chapter 1

"24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves,"



God gave Pharaoh over as seen in Romans chapter 1

"28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;"


Thus, God has Mercy on the humble and Hardens the proud as seen in Psalms 18:27

"You save the humble but bring low those whose eyes are haughty."





Romans 9:19-21
19One of you will say to me: "Then why does God still blame us? For who
resists his will?" 20But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? "Shall what is
formed say to him who formed it, 'Why did you make me like this?' " 21Does not
the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for
noble purposes and some for common use?




The whole chapter of Jeremiah 18 talks about God being the Potter. God being the Potter doesn't negate conditions. Infact, it includes them.


Jeremiah 18

"5 Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying: 6 “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the LORD. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel! 7 The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, 8 if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. 9 And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, 10 if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it. 11 “Now therefore, speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD: “Behold, I am fashioning a disaster and devising a plan against you. Return now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.”’”

God being the Potter and us being the clay does not have to mean an unconditional bending to the will of God. As seen from Jeremiah chapter 18 we are freely bent to His will through conditions.


As also seen in 2nd Timothy 2:20-21

20In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. 21If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.




Lets look at what Saints Augustine and Chrysostom had to say about this passage





Quote:
"Having given his conclusion [in the last verse] Paul plays devil's
advocate by asking a rhetorical question........He responds to this question in
a sensible way so that we might understand that the basic rewards of faith and
of unbelief are made plain only to spiritual people and not to those who live
according to the earthly man. Likewise with the way God in his foreknowledge
elects those who will believe and condemns unbelievers. He neither elects the
ones because of their works nor condemns the other because of theirs, but he
grants to the faith of the ones the ability to do good works and hardens the
unbelief of the others by deserting them, so that they do evil. This
understanding, as I have said, is given only to spiritual people and is very
different from the wisdom of the flesh. Thus Paul counters his inquirer so that
he may understand that he first must put away the man of clay in order to be
worthy to investigate these things by the Spirit."


Augustine on Romans from the book Ancient Christian commentary on scripture: New Testament VI Romans edited by Gerald Bray page 259





Quote:
"We read in Exodus[10:1] that Pharaoh's heart was hardened, so that he
was not moved even by clear signs. Therefore, because Pharaoh did not obey the
commands of God he was punished. No one can say that this hardness of heart came
upon Pharaoh undeservedly; it came by the judgment of God who was giving him
just punishment for his unbelief. Nor should it be thought that Pharaoh did not
obey because he could not, on the ground that his heart had already been
hardened. On the contrary, Pharaoh had deserved his hardness of heart by his
earlier unbelief. For in those whom God has chosen it is not works but faith
which is the beginning of merit, so that they might do good works by the gift of
God. And in those whom he condemns unbelief and unfaithfulness are the beginning
of punishment, so that by that very punishment they are permitted to do what is
evil."

Augustine on Romans from the book Ancient Christian commentary on scripture: New Testament VI Romans edited by Gerald Bray page 257




The Faithful freely yield to the Potter's Hands.

Quote:
"Paul says this in order not to do away with free will but
rather to show to what extent we ought to obey God. We should be as little
inclined to call God to account as a piece of clay is. We ought to abstain not
only from complaining or questioning but from even speaking or thinking about it
at all, and instead we should become like that lifeless matter which follows the
Potter's hands and lets itself be shaped in whatever the Potter wills."



John Chrysostom, "Homilies on Romans" 16Ancient Christian Commentary on scripture New Testament VI Romans page 260 edited by Gerald Bray






Romans chapter 9:22-24
22What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore
with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction.23What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory— 24even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles
?



Pharough's heart was hardened through God's great patience!!! HE turns people over to their nature after patiently waiting for them to repent....He does this through great long suffering.



And last but not least God's calling is for both Jews and gentiles.



Jnorm

An exposition of john 6:36-37, 43-44, 64-66

Alot of people who believe in Once saved Always saved and P.O.T.S. will use these scriptures as proof texts that a person can't loose their salvation. Well, before jumping into the text I think one must first ask the question. Is the "drawing" of the Father a "static" one time drawing or an organic continual Drawing?








john 6:36-37"36

"But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe. 37"All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out."



The word "gives" is a "present active indicative" of didomi, So it is a continual giving to the Son. One could argue that the giving was done in Eternity where time is not present. However, in time and space Whoever the Father continually gives to the Son will in a future time continually "come" to the Son, and the person that continually comes to the Son will not be cast out by Him.



John 6:43-44

"43Jesus answered and said to them, "Do not grumble among yourselves. 44"No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day."



No one can "continually" come to Jesus unless the Father continually draws them to Christ. And Jesus will raise that person up on the last day.



John 6:64-66

"64"But there are some of you who do not believe " For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. 65And He was saying, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father."66As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore."


This is a Perfect Passive Participle of didomi so this was a one time event in the past. And as you can see in verse 64 Jesus foreknew which ones who would not "continually" believe and who would eventually betray Him. We tend to forget that God has perfect knowledge. God is Omniscient! He is all knowing!

No one can continually come to Jesus unless it has been granted by the Father before the foundation of the World.

We know in John chapter 15 that it is the Father who "takes away" those who do not bear fruit in Christ.

John chapter 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 it so that it may bear more fruit."

Thus this is what happened in John chapter 6. It is my belief that scripture shows us that whenever we have the light we "must" embrace the light if we are to get out of Darkness, grow in grace, and remain being drawn by the Father.


We see in John 5:35 that some embraced a prevenient light


31"If I testify about myself, my testimony is not valid. 32There is another who testifies in my favor, and I know that his testimony about me is valid. 33"You have sent to John and he has testified to the truth. 34Not that I accept human testimony; but I mention it that you may be saved. 35John was a lamp that burned and gave light, and you chose for a time to enjoy his light".

They were able to enjoy the Light of John the Baptist.


In John chapter 12 we see Jesus refusing to argue with some of the people who resisted the words He shared. Instead, he just told them to believe while you still have the chance.

John chapter 12

"35Then Jesus told them, "You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark does not know where he is going. 36Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light."

When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them."The same was true in John chapter 6. Many including the 70 resisted the words of Jesus! When we resist the Light we are in danger of no longer being Drawn by the Father.

We must keep believing whatever Jesus says for this is how we know we are being drawn by the Father.
Will we be one of the called? You know, those who only believe for a season? Or will we be one of the chosen? Those who continually believe for eternity and will show up at the wedding with their wedding clothes on?
Only the Father knows the answer to that question.

Romans chapter 8

"29For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;"


It is our responsibility to watch our life and doctrine closely......and to hold on even to the end.


1 Timothy 4:16

Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.


1 Corinthians 15:2

"By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain."





Thus it seems as if the drawing of the Father is an organic continual one.





INLOVE Jnorm
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