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Misunderstanding Faith

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  • #31
    Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
    You are making add odd view of Christianity where flagellation is key to justification.

    You emphasize Hebrews which makes full sense as the effort to restore Hebrew Christians to fellowship. You end up using Hebrews as a call to being persecuted for the sake of being persecuted.

    Where does your perspective originate? Have you become a monk who partakes of flagellation?
    Modern theology asks questions that were asked in the 16th century, when it should be asking the questions asked in the 1st century. Do you know that Luther made a mistake thinking Paul was criticising the Jews for working for their own salvation? They were rebuked for thinking "works of the law", circumcision, dietary laws made them children of Abraham, so, destined to be blessings to the world, fulfilled, saved. Parchment found in the Dead Sea caves prove this. Luther needed biblical support to do away with works, because the RCC claimed to be the repository of all the grace earned by the good works of Catholic saints, which they were authorised to sell. So he latched on to Paul's attack on works, used it to denounce judgment according to works.

    Quote
    3. Final Judgment According to Works
    (N. T. Wright)

    The third point is remarkably controversial, seeing how well founded it is at several points in Paul. Indeed, listening to yesterday’s papers, it seems that there has been a massive conspiracy of silence on something which was quite clear for Paul (as indeed for Jesus). Paul, in company with mainstream second-Temple Judaism, affirms that God’s final judgment will be in accordance with the entirety of a life led – in accordance, in other words, with works. He says this clearly and unambiguously in Romans 14.10–12 and 2 Corinthians 5.10. He affirms it in that terrifying passage about church-builders in 1 Corinthians 3. But the main passage in question is of course Romans 2.1–16.

    https://ntwrightpage.com/2016/07/12/...tives-on-paul/
    Last edited by footwasher; 09-12-2020, 02:33 PM.

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by footwasher View Post
      Modern theology asks questions that were asked in the 16th century, when it should be asking the questions asked in the 1st century. Do you know that Luther made a mistake thinking Paul was criticising the Jews for working for their own salvation? They were rebuked for thinking "works of the law", circumcision, dietary laws made them children of Abraham, so, destined to be blessings to the world, fulfilled, saved. Parchment found in the Dead Sea caves prove this. Luther needed biblical support to do away with works, because the RCC claimed to be the repository of all the grace earned by the good works of Catholic saints, which they were authorised to sell. So he latched on to Paul's attack on works, used it to denounce judgment according to works.

      Quote
      3. Final Judgment According to Works
      (N. T. Wright)

      The third point is remarkably controversial, seeing how well founded it is at several points in Paul. Indeed, listening to yesterday’s papers, it seems that there has been a massive conspiracy of silence on something which was quite clear for Paul (as indeed for Jesus). Paul, in company with mainstream second-Temple Judaism, affirms that God’s final judgment will be in accordance with the entirety of a life led – in accordance, in other words, with works. He says this clearly and unambiguously in Romans 14.10–12 and 2 Corinthians 5.10. He affirms it in that terrifying passage about church-builders in 1 Corinthians 3. But the main passage in question is of course Romans 2.1–16.

      https://ntwrightpage.com/2016/07/12/...tives-on-paul/
      Luther was closer to a proper understanding of Paul than Wright. Nor do I like to rely on misunderstandings of Rom 2:1-16. The necessary work of God is to believe on the Son whom he sent. Loving actions should be the result of this work of faith toward the Son but are not "measured" as obligations to be justified.

      Now can we get back to discussing the meaning of faith?

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
        Luther was closer to a proper understanding of Paul than Wright. Nor do I like to rely on misunderstandings of Rom 2:1-16. The necessary work of God is to believe on the Son whom he sent. Loving actions should be the result of this work of faith toward the Son but are not "measured" as obligations to be justified.

        Now can we get back to discussing the meaning of faith?
        See, we misunderstand what faith meant in the 1st century ANE. Our old TWeb member, Tercel, explains:

        Quote
        Outside of the Bible, what is the Greek word for faith (pistis) used to mean? We're in luck... the first century Jewish historian Josephus uses it in his writings.

        In his autobiography, Jospehus describes a time when he was the leader of a small army, and another group had tried to kill him. Josephus captures the enemy leader and says to him “repent and have faith in me hereafter” (Life 110). What Josephus clearly means by this is “become part of my army, and obey my commands.”

        Later he speaks of a city that had turned against him, which after he has forced them into submission again, he rebukes them for revolting “from their faith in me” (Life 167). Again, he's speaking of their loyalty to him.

        What exactly is the quality that Josephus is getting at? Think about his usage of the word in an army and the concept of soldiers following their leader. What is the relationship between a soldier and their commanding officer like? The solider is loyal and trusting, he follows his superiors' commands, when the captain leads the charge into battle the soldier is right there behind him following in his footsteps. The concept is one of “followingness”, obedience to orders, loyalty, faithfulness, allegiance etc. English is really missing a word to describe this quality of a soldier... the quality of “followingness”.

        http://theogeek.blogspot.com/2005/02...-of-faith.html

        Also at time stamp 5:10 minutes in the video below.

        If you want to paraphrase Rom 2:1-16, go ahead. It's very conveniently avoided by Reformed scholars.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICHovRHJAYY
        Last edited by footwasher; 09-12-2020, 04:46 PM.

        Comment


        • #34
          Originally posted by footwasher View Post
          See, we misunderstand what faith meant in the 1st century ANE. Our old TWeb member, Tercel, explains:

          Quote
          Outside of the Bible, what is the Greek word for faith (pistis) used to mean? We're in luck... the first century Jewish historian Josephus uses it in his writings.

          In his autobiography, Jospehus describes a time when he was the leader of a small army, and another group had tried to kill him. Josephus captures the enemy leader and says to him “repent and have faith in me hereafter” (Life 110). What Josephus clearly means by this is “become part of my army, and obey my commands.”

          Later he speaks of a city that had turned against him, which after he has forced them into submission again, he rebukes them for revolting “from their faith in me” (Life 167). Again, he's speaking of their loyalty to him.

          What exactly is the quality that Josephus is getting at? Think about his usage of the word in an army and the concept of soldiers following their leader. What is the relationship between a soldier and their commanding officer like? The solider is loyal and trusting, he follows his superiors' commands, when the captain leads the charge into battle the soldier is right there behind him following in his footsteps. The concept is one of “followingness”, obedience to orders, loyalty, faithfulness, allegiance etc. English is really missing a word to describe this quality of a soldier... the quality of “followingness”.

          http://theogeek.blogspot.com/2005/02...-of-faith.html

          Also at time stamp 5:10 minutes in the video below.

          If you want to paraphrase Rom 2:1-16, go ahead. It's very conveniently avoided by Reformed scholars.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICHovRHJAYY
          The circumstance and use of "faith" in Christianity is a bit different from being part of an army. Nor do I think Josephus ever followed Christ. Words are used by certain groups in different ways that outsiders use those words. A dictionary definition (or one derived from Josephus) only goes part way to show how words are used in specific contexts. However, there are some good qualities to Tercel's description

          And we still are off topic discussing Rom 2:1-16 when trying to define faith.

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
            Faith in its essential meaning is trust. God does not have to trust himself. Paul's example in Romans 4 is that Abe trusted God in the promises made to Abe.

            The critical element here is upon what (or whom) Abe placed his trust. Our ability to have this faith results from the gift through the hearing of the gospel (Rom 10:17). As such, faith is not a work ... it is a change that happens when the sheep hear the Shepherd's voice and follow Him.
            What is the context of Abraham’s trust?

            Scripture says God places different people in different circumstances, but the common hope is that they might reach out and find Him (Acts 17:27). Abraham’s circumstances made him realise that humanity in its existing form was foreign to him, he felt alienated by its goal in toiling for things that rust and perish. God removed the darkness, and provided the alternative: Abraham could be a part of a new humanity, which was focused on doing things that resulted in returns which does not perish, by being a blessing to the world in gathering God’s lost sheep, those who also thought like Abraham (and God), that working for perishable treasure was pointless, and were looking for something better.

            Hebrews 11:13All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. 15And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.


            Of course, some who received this revelation preferred the darkness, the broad path, to live a comfortable life, like Esau, who sold his privilege for a bowl of soup.

            Since trust in believers is what made God justify them, confirm as His sheep, it had to be tested for genuineness, because trust was what would make them blessings to the world, enable them to turn God’s other sheep from settling for treasure that perishes, to striving for that which does not. The announcement that the New Humanity was being ushered in, which would enable believers to be blessings, is the Gospel, the revelation of how believers would be saved from not being indwelt by God, because of sin, unbelief.

            It helps if you understand the context.

            Imagine that there is confusion between the evangelist and his audience, and he has to explain what is on offer. The latter has seen the evangelist being a blessing to the world, by turning people away from selfish living to serving God, what Second Temple Judaism calls living the eternal type of life, having God dwell with him, enabling him to motivate people to turn to God, attained by picking out clues in Scripture. He has done what Israel has failed to do, be a light to the nations, so obviously, Mr Evangelist has entered eternal life. His offer is to explain the Way, the method of getting God on your side, entering eternal life:

            John 3:1Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.

            So Mr E says, “Unless you are born again, you cannot enter eternal life.”

            So how are we born again?

            "By having a different spirit, meta noia, change of mindset, from not trusting God and murmuring when disciplined, to full trust in God, because we remembered His salvation, His great works from before, in other words, we have allowed the Holy Spirit to make us brave."

            But why do we need to be brave?

            “To pass a test”

            What test?

            “Proving the truth of your promise”.

            What promise?

            "That you believe what Jesus taught".

            Which is?

            "That you will turn people to God if they see His presence in you".

            How?

            "When you pick up a cross and do not die."

            How can that happen?

            "By becoming special, sanctified, set apart."

            How does THAT happen?

            "If you pass the test for Rest, entering sanctification".

            Which is?

            "Show the trust you need for passing".

            And this faith is shown how?

            "By passing the test, picking up the cross, like Abraham did, in the incident of obeying the command to offer Isaac up as a sacrifice."

            But how do I get this building up of faith, this increased trust, confidence that I can face a cross and live?

            By being baptised in the belief of what Jesus taught, that God will save, when I pick up a cross.

            But how does that baptism in Christ's name help?

            "It leads to being ministered to by the Holy Spirit, who will build up your faith, like He built up Caleb’s faith, enabling him to obey God, face the enemy army, leading to turning Rahab to serving God."

            Is this building up irresistible?

            "No, you can choose either to be built up by the Spirit, helping you obey, or allow your fear of the cross to tear down your faith, like Israel, leading to disobedience because of unbelief, lack of trust, leading to not entering Rest, being blessings to the world."

            How much faith is enough?

            "It depends on the person. A little can move mountains. Having none will cause you to see waves, and drown you, even on dry land."

            If you feel you have not had enough building up, can you turn back?

            "No, but you can ask for terms of peace!"
            Last edited by footwasher; 09-12-2020, 09:55 PM.

            Comment


            • #36
              God provided a way into justification where we do not have to be scared that we will fall away. Daniel 9 speaks of eternal righteousness that was to come through the Messiah. The Letter to the Hebrews does not even say that any of them will fall away. It just sort of mentions about the problems of those who fell away in various circumstances.

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
                God provided a way into justification where we do not have to be scared that we will fall away. Daniel 9 speaks of eternal righteousness that was to come through the Messiah.
                Yes, Daniel talks about Jesus cleansing the People of God eternally.

                Daniel 9:24“Seventy ‘sevens’ c are decreed for your people and your holy city to finish d transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the Most Holy Place.

                So Jesus did die to glorify God when He was raised up from the earth, and the blood He shed did cleanse the New People of God eternally, so that it could overcome the separation that Adam and Cain caused.

                The Letter to the Hebrews does not even say that any of them will fall away. It just sort of mentions about the problems of those who fell away in various circumstances.
                However, to enter this New Man in Christ requires us to pass the test. Not all Israel was Israel, but only those who entered Rest, by passing the test of facing the enemy army, by turning away from bending a knee to Baal, by showing fruits expressing repentance, giving an extra coat to their neighbor. Not all the church was the Church, except those who turned away from serving Mammon to serving God immediately, or those, like most of us, who asked for terms of peace, asked for more time. God will give more time, but He will allow us to be chastened, like the Hebrews, again to strengthen us, in front of the heavenly witnesses:

                Hebrews 12:1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
                3For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

                4You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin;

                5and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons,
                “MY SON, DO NOT REGARD LIGHTLY THE DISCIPLINE OF THE LORD,
                NOR FAINT WHEN YOU ARE REPROVED BY HIM;

                6FOR THOSE WHOM THE LORD LOVES HE DISCIPLINES,
                AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES.”

                7It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. 11All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

                12Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, 13and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed.

                14Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord. 15See 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; 16that there be no immoral or godless person like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal. 17For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.

                18For you have not come to a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, 19and to the blast of a trumpet and the sound of words which sound was such that those who heard begged that no further word be spoken to them. 20For they could not bear the command, “IF EVEN A BEAST TOUCHES THE MOUNTAIN, IT WILL BE STONED.” 21And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, “I AM FULL OF FEAR and trembling.” 22But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, 23to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel.

                25See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape who turn away from Him who warns from heaven. 26And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “YET ONCE MORE I WILL SHAKE NOT ONLY THE EARTH, BUT ALSO THE HEAVEN.” 27This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; 29for our God is a consuming fire.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
                  I don't get the significance or meaning of "will to trust" So much of your argument is built around that concept that I just stopped reading. TL;DR
                  A "will to trust" is my way of describing a faith that simply apply their trust without understanding what they are trusting, or having faith in. There is a difference between having faith with discernment, to simply putting trust. Though we always have a basis why we put faith on something, our basis may be inadequate reason to justify our trust. And so the end result of such faith is truly a mere "will to trust" and lacking the true discernment.

                  When a person bases his faith on wisdom, he then put his faith with assurance, and with certainty, and thus recognize the truth in what he's having faith on. This is the faith that is spoken in Hebrews 11 that can speaks of evidence.

                  When you claim to have faith by hearing the word of God, without having any supporting sound explanations, it makes your faith a mere "will to trust." A true faith is based on a "sound" basis such as wisdom.
                  ...WISDOM giveth life to them that have it. (Ecclesiastes 7:12)
                  ...the ISLES shall wait for his law (Isaiah 42:4)
                  https://philippinesinprophecies.wordpress.com/

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by FarEastBird View Post
                    A "will to trust" is my way of describing a faith that simply apply their trust without understanding what they are trusting, or having faith in. There is a difference between having faith with discernment, to simply putting trust. Though we always have a basis why we put faith on something, our basis may be inadequate reason to justify our trust. And so the end result of such faith is truly a mere "will to trust" and lacking the true discernment.

                    When a person bases his faith on wisdom, he then put his faith with assurance, and with certainty, and thus recognize the truth in what he's having faith on. This is the faith that is spoken in Hebrews 11 that can speaks of evidence.

                    When you claim to have faith by hearing the word of God, without having any supporting sound explanations, it makes your faith a mere "will to trust." A true faith is based on a "sound" basis such as wisdom.
                    I don't see why you need a distinction. You make things sound rather gnostic in the approach. It is sort of like saying a baby can't know its mother until that baby can look up the word in the dictionary.

                    The other problem with your approach is that someone does not have evidence at all. Or the person may misinterpret scripture so that the supposed evidence is actually contrary to that person's understanding.

                    Does a child only have faith to receive justification by God when he or she barely knows about sin and Christ's death and resurrection? Or does that child have to read 20 theology books before that child has faith?

                    You seem to be saying that a person has to survive a piano falling on his head so that he has evidence that God protected him. This makes us feel the need to test God or we won't have faith.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post

                      I don't see why you need a distinction. You make things sound rather gnostic in the approach. It is sort of like saying a baby can't know its mother until that baby can look up the word in the dictionary.

                      The other problem with your approach is that someone does not have evidence at all. Or the person may misinterpret scripture so that the supposed evidence is actually contrary to that person's understanding.

                      Does a child only have faith to receive justification by God when he or she barely knows about sin and Christ's death and resurrection? Or does that child have to read 20 theology books before that child has faith?

                      You seem to be saying that a person has to survive a piano falling on his head so that he has evidence that God protected him. This makes us feel the need to test God or we won't have faith.
                      A better term instead of “will to trust” is “blind faith”.

                      The logic is that we think that if we believe that Jesus can give us eternal life, then we will receive eternal life. We have no real evidence. It is just a hope.

                      Interestingly, the Bible does teach about evidence. It seems that when people heard Jesus claim that they could be blessings to the world, provided they did not fail like Israel failed near the Promised Land, they said they believed.

                      Israel had sworn to believe God when He said it needed trust to enter the Land that made them blessings to the world. On swearing, He gave them evidence that He could be trusted: He created problems like food and water shortages and then rescued them. This evidence should have strengthened their trust, but they forgot these great works, and instead allowed their fear to take over. So when God tested their faith near Canaan, they failed and God would not allow them to enter the Land filled with milk and honey, the state where they would be blessings to the world, in turn earning treasure that does not perish.

                      This is in contrast to Abraham. He was also given evidence of God’s ability to save from danger in the incidents where King Abhimelech and Pharoah threatened the his and his family’s safety. Abraham remembered these great works, allowed them to strengthen, perfect, complete, his faith and he passed when it was tested when God told him to offer up Isaac as a sacrifice.

                      So we see that an evidence based faith is the faith God wishes us to have, instead of a faith without evidence, a forced faith, a will to trust faith.

                      Why do we need this faith? Because eternal life, Kingdom life, requires it. This life requires us to pick up a cross and be resurrected, do difficult deeds, try to explain difficult spiritual topics and succeed, so that people will be drawn to God to be able to do the same things, when they see we are raised up:

                      John 3:1Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”

                      Joshua 2:8Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof 9and said to them, “I know that the Lord has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea a for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed. b 11When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.

                      So if you want a faith that is not a "will to faith" be baptised in the belief that you can trust God. Then the Spirit will edify you, build up your faith:

                      Acts 19:1While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when a you believed?”

                      They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

                      3So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?”

                      “John’s baptism,” they replied.

                      4Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues b and prophesied. 7There were about twelve men in all.


                      But after tasting of the power of the Holy Spirit, if you act like Israel, who ate and drank of spiritual nourishment, but did not let it be of any profit to them, so they failed when tested, then there is no further opportunity of repentance left, because you have put the blood of Jesus to shame.

                      Hebrews 6:4It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age 6and who have fallen c away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.
                      Last edited by footwasher; 10-13-2020, 12:11 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Originally posted by footwasher View Post

                        A better term instead of “will to trust” is “blind faith”.

                        The logic is that we think that if we believe that Jesus can give us eternal life, then we will receive eternal life. We have no real evidence. It is just a hope.

                        Interestingly, the Bible does teach about evidence. It seems that when people heard Jesus claim that they could be blessings to the world, provided they did not fail like Israel failed near the Promised Land, they said they believed.

                        Israel had sworn to believe God when He said it needed trust to enter the Land that made them blessings to the world. On swearing, He gave them evidence that He could be trusted: He created problems like food and water shortages and then rescued them. This evidence should have strengthened their trust, but they forgot these great works, and instead allowed their fear to take over. So when God tested their faith near Canaan, they failed and God would not allow them to enter the Land filled with milk and honey, the state where they would be blessings to the world, in turn earning treasure that does not perish.

                        This is in contrast to Abraham. He was also given evidence of God’s ability to save from danger in the incidents where King Abhimelech and Pharoah threatened the his and his family’s safety. Abraham remembered these great works, allowed them to strengthen, perfect, complete, his faith and he passed when it was tested when God told him to offer up Isaac as a sacrifice.

                        So we see that an evidence based faith is the faith God wishes us to have, instead of a faith without evidence, a forced faith, a will to trust faith.

                        Why do we need this faith? Because eternal life, Kingdom life, requires it. This life requires us to pick up a cross and be resurrected, do difficult deeds, try to explain difficult spiritual topics and succeed, so that people will be drawn to God to be able to do the same things, when they see we are raised up:

                        John 3:1Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”

                        Joshua 2:8Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof 9and said to them, “I know that the Lord has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea a for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed. b 11When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.

                        So if you want a faith that is not a "will to faith" be baptised in the belief that you can trust God. Then the Spirit will edify you, build up your faith:

                        Acts 19:1While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when a you believed?”

                        They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

                        3So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?”

                        “John’s baptism,” they replied.

                        4Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues b and prophesied. 7There were about twelve men in all.


                        But after tasting of the power of the Holy Spirit, if you act like Israel, who ate and drank of spiritual nourishment, but did not let it be of any profit to them, so they failed when tested, then there is no further opportunity of repentance left, because you have put the blood of Jesus to shame.

                        Hebrews 6:4It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age 6and who have fallen c away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.
                        If you want to call "saving faith" as "blind faith," that is your choice. The alternative is a faith by works -- by acquiring knowledge until you have come by your own ability, by the flesh, to know God.

                        I am talking about faith that is a gift from God, by grace, that no one should boast. Even the person who acquires knowledge to back up their trust, that person should recognize that it was God's calling and grace, not the study, that gave that man faith. Otherwise, that man is a buffoon who has improperly claimed that it was by his skill that he came to God.

                        As you should recall from the history of Israel, actions in the flesh did not lead people to faith. Some came to faith -- but this was by divine action. We see in Romans 9 where God selected people of the promise while the others were excluded. You are asking that people come by works, contrary to the teaching of Paul.

                        I'm not sure what your unorthodox beliefs are but they start appearing in your works-based faith, as you demonstrate in this discussion.
                        Last edited by mikewhitney; 10-13-2020, 12:21 PM.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post

                          If you want to call "saving faith" as "blind faith," that is your choice. The alternative is a faith by works -- by acquiring knowledge until you have come by your own ability, by the flesh, to know God.

                          I am talking about faith that is a gift from God, by grace, that no one should boast. Even the person who acquires knowledge to back up their trust, that person should recognize that it was God's calling and grace, not the study, that gave that man faith. Otherwise, that man is a buffoon who has improperly claimed that it was by his skill that he came to God.

                          As you should recall from the history of Israel, actions in the flesh did not lead people to faith. Some came to faith -- but this was by divine action. We see in Romans 9 where God selected people of the promise while the others were excluded. You are asking that people come by works, contrary to the teaching of Paul.

                          I'm not sure what your unorthodox beliefs are but they start appearing in your works-based faith, as you demonstrate in this discussion.
                          The sin of Israel was not trying to be saved by works, it was not believing that God could be trusted:

                          Psalms 106:21They forgot God their Savior, who did great things in Egypt,22wondrous works in the land of Ham, and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.

                          Hebrews 4:2For we also received the good news just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, since they did not share the faith of those who comprehended it.

                          1 Corinthians 10:
                          1I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud, and that they all passed through the sea. 2They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. 3They all ate the same spiritual food 4and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ. 5Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, for they were struck down in the wilderness.

                          6These things took place as examples to keep us from craving evil things as they did.

                          Matthew 4:
                          20Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. 21“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.
                          Last edited by footwasher; 10-13-2020, 12:28 PM.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by footwasher View Post

                            The sin of Israel was not trying to be saved by works, it was not believing that God could be trusted:

                            Psalms 106:21They forgot God their Savior, who did great things in Egypt,22wondrous works in the land of Ham, and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.

                            Hebrews 4:2For we also received the good news just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, since they did not share the faith of those who comprehended it.

                            1 Corinthians 10:
                            1I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud, and that they all passed through the sea. 2They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. 3They all ate the same spiritual food 4and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ. 5Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, for they were struck down in the wilderness.

                            6These things took place as examples to keep us from craving evil things as they did.
                            They didn't trust God because they were given external events that don't change a person. The lack of trust is the nature of fallen man. God changes that nature and gives people faith. This is a change done by God apart from flesh and works. This faith is reasonable when actually are able to investigate the testimony of scriptures. But it is evident that people can read the scriptures without faith. So it is not by knowledge that people come to faith.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post

                              They didn't trust God because they were given external events that don't change a person. The lack of trust is the nature of fallen man. God changes that nature and gives people faith. This is a change done by God apart from flesh and works. This faith is reasonable when actually are able to investigate the testimony of scriptures. But it is evident that people can read the scriptures without faith. So it is not by knowledge that people come to faith.
                              This contradicts Scripture which says those who did not sin were the ones who understood, gained knowledge, and repented, meta noia-ed, had a change of mind, had a different mind set, a different spirit, like Caleb, by remembering God's great works:

                              Hebrews 4:2For we also received the good news just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, since they did not share the faith of those who comprehended it.

                              Numbers 14:22“Surely all the men who have seen My glory and My signs which I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness, yet have put Me to the test these ten times and have not listened to My voice, 23shall by no means see the land which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who spurned Me see it. 24“But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.
                              Last edited by footwasher; 10-13-2020, 12:50 PM.

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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by footwasher View Post

                                This contradicts Scripture which says those who did not sin were the ones who understood, gained knowledge, and repented, meta noia-ed, had a change of mind, had a different mind set, a different spirit, like Caleb:

                                Hebrews 4:2For we also received the good news just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, since they did not share the faith of those who comprehended it.

                                Numbers 14:22“Surely all the men who have seen My glory and My signs which I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness, yet have put Me to the test these ten times and have not listened to My voice, 23shall by no means see the land which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who spurned Me see it. 24“But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.
                                Thanks for confirming my point with these passages. Caleb followed God because he had a different spirit. God had changed his perspective. Others did not follow because they were influenced only by external things -- by seeing miracles. The miracles they saw did not change them because they only lived in the flesh. This is why Christ was sent.

                                The passages from Hebrews was written to strengthen the faith of the Hebrews. There was no description of how the recipients of the letter had come to a place of faith. But it is obvious that they came to this faith through Jesus, not just by their own ability. Faith must come first before people will accept scripture.

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