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Old 08-25-2011, 02:42 AM
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Default The Doctrine of Election - John MacArthur

This is a 3-part sermon series by John MacArthur that talks about the doctrine of Divine Election from a Biblical standpoint. He starts out by listing all the criticisms that Christian teachers have with this doctrine and admits that he himself sometimes has trouble understanding it; but it's clearly taught in Scripture and is not something that we can easily dismiss. (Each part is about 55 minutes long.)

Part 1:
http://www.gty.org/resources/Sermons...1#.TlWiW66OgyA

Part 2:
http://www.gty.org/resources/Sermons...2#.TlWjla6OgyA

Part 3:
http://www.gty.org/resources/Sermons...3#.TlWjqq6OgyA

In short, the doctrine of Election states that we, as a fallen people, are incapable of finding Salvation without direct intervention from GOD Himself. Thus, belief is not something that we arrive at by our own intellectual means and it is not something that we are convinced of by empirical evidence. Belief is a gift from GOD and GOD only grants that gift to those He has chosen. However, GOD doesn't simply choose those of us who choose Him first, GOD chose each of us before the creation of the universe.

This means that Salvation is 100% a work of GOD and is not GOD's reward to us for something that we did. It also eliminates any possibility of self-congratulatory boasting on our part.

For those of you who are strongly opposed to this doctrine, I would ask that you simply listen to all three parts before criticizing, because he may address whatever concerns you may have in one of the sermons. I know that many are going to claim that Divine Election is unfair, unjust, or makes GOD out to be a monster, but MacArthur addresses all of that in these sermons.
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:47 AM
Chuck
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... admits that he himself sometimes has trouble understanding it; but it's clearly taught in Scripture
If a guy as brilliant as MacArthur has trouble understanding it..... it can't be that "clearly" taught in Scripture.

I'm a big fan of MacArthur and I've always enjoyed his teachings so thanks for posting these. I'm just about to finish a series by Driscoll and as soon as I do this will be next on my list.

Great post!
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:53 AM
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If a guy as brilliant as MacArthur has trouble understanding it..... it can't be that "clearly" taught in Scripture.

I'm a big fan of MacArthur and I've always enjoyed his teachings so thanks for posting these. I'm just about to finish a series by Driscoll and as soon as I do this will be next on my list.

Great post!
There are lots of Biblical principles that our finite, sinful minds will never be able to fully comprehend, that doesn't mean that they aren't clearly taught in Scripture. Divine Election is mentioned throughout the Old Testament and New Testament. It's there, but people simply don't want to see it because it contradicts our corrupted understanding of justice, fairness and free will.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:20 AM
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There are lots of Biblical principles that our finite, sinful minds will never be able to fully comprehend, that doesn't mean that they aren't clearly taught in Scripture. Divine Election is mentioned throughout the Old Testament and New Testament. It's there, but people simply don't want to see it because it contradicts our corrupted understanding of justice, fairness and free will.
agreed people might think they understand eternity but they don't eternity doesn't mean forever. it means the absence of time, God created time just so our finite minds could digest what is happening no one can understand the absence of time/eternity, but the bible is clear about eternity

i for one believe that it is when people think they understand that they don't have the slightest clue, be it eternity or election, so i am glad he admits it is hard to understand


anyone that claims to grasp eternity is a fool
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Old 08-25-2011, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
If a guy as brilliant as MacArthur has trouble understanding it..... it can't be that "clearly" taught in Scripture.

I'm a big fan of MacArthur and I've always enjoyed his teachings so thanks for posting these. I'm just about to finish a series by Driscoll and as soon as I do this will be next on my list.

Great post!
What series of Marks are you reading/listening to.
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Old 08-25-2011, 05:21 PM
Maglorius
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It is a hard doctrine to get our human minds around. Paul talks about it quite a bit and Peter does say that some of the things that Paul writes about are hard to understand. For me it was a series by Mark Driscoll called Christ on the Cross that opened my mind to this doctrine of election and that salvation was gifted to me by God. I will definitely listen to this sermon series.
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Old 08-25-2011, 07:48 PM
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I agree with half of it. I think the bible teaches there is biblical intervention (holy spirit conviction) but I do not think it dismisses human free will. BY the logic John has God chooses some to go to heaven and some to go to hell. That is not true. Free will must be factored in. John does discuss this in part 2 I think but his answers are typical for Calvinist and never really proves anything but their personal statement of faith. I agree fully salvation is all about God. But I do not find anywhere in scripture where man's free will is removed form the equation. People here the gospel and make a conscience effort to reject it even after the Holy Spirit has worked in their life. I think this election teaching lends itself a little to much to the Calvinist Dogma Irresistible grace. We are all elected to salvation Christ died for ALL on the cross. Some will accept the free gift others will reject.
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Old 08-25-2011, 08:40 PM
Maglorius
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I agree with half of it. I think the bible teaches there is biblical intervention (holy spirit conviction) but I do not think it dismisses human free will. BY the logic John has God chooses some to go to heaven and some to go to hell. That is not true. Free will must be factored in. John does discuss this in part 2 I think but his answers are typical for Calvinist and never really proves anything but their personal statement of faith. I agree fully salvation is all about God. But I do not find anywhere in scripture where man's free will is removed form the equation. People here the gospel and make a conscience effort to reject it even after the Holy Spirit has worked in their life. I think this election teaching lends itself a little to much to the Calvinist Dogma Irresistible grace. We are all elected to salvation Christ died for ALL on the cross. Some will accept the free gift others will reject.
I have only listened to part 1 so far. But John definitely denies double predestination. We all choose hell and through Gods saving grace he chooses some to be saved.
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:58 PM
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I have only listened to part 1 so far. But John definitely denies double predestination. We all choose hell and through Gods saving grace he chooses some to be saved.
You beat me to it. He covers the fact that GOD most definitely does NOT create people who are only destined for Hell.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Chris F View Post
I agree with half of it. I think the bible teaches there is biblical intervention (holy spirit conviction) but I do not think it dismisses human free will. BY the logic John has God chooses some to go to heaven and some to go to hell. That is not true. Free will must be factored in. John does discuss this in part 2 I think but his answers are typical for Calvinist and never really proves anything but their personal statement of faith. I agree fully salvation is all about God. But I do not find anywhere in scripture where man's free will is removed form the equation. People here the gospel and make a conscience effort to reject it even after the Holy Spirit has worked in their life. I think this election teaching lends itself a little to much to the Calvinist Dogma Irresistible grace. We are all elected to salvation Christ died for ALL on the cross. Some will accept the free gift others will reject.
I don't really see much mentioned in the Bible about free will. Or at least not our modern concept of it. I see a lot about us being slaves - either slaves of Christ or slaves of sin - and slaves definitely don't have free will. So we are either led by sin or led by Christ; but without direct intervention from GOD we would be totally incapable of choosing Christ.

I believe the modern concept of free will is an illusion and has more in common with sinful pride than anything taught in the Bible.

I also don't believe that we are all elected. That totally defeats the purpose of having an elect. Did GOD reveal Himself to all the nations of the world in the Old Testament or just Israel (who He chose out of the nations)? Did GOD offer to make a mighty nation from the seed of every person on the planet or just Abraham? Did GOD bless both Jacob and Esau or did He decide to love Jacob and hate Esau before they were even born?

If you follow the pattern of the Old Testament, GOD chooses (or elects) a few out of many and from that few, He preserves a remnant for Himself. I don't think anything has changed. It's called Divine Prerogative. GOD has mercy and compassion on who He has mercy and compassion - it's not our place to decide that for Him.

In Luke 4: 25-27, Jesus said:
Quote:
"I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.”
The idea that GOD would choose only one widow and only one leper (who wasn't even Jewish) out of all the thousands of Israelites who were suffering and dying at those times, was so offensive to the religious Jews of Nazareth, that they attempted to throw Jesus off of a cliff! The Doctrine of Election is extremely offensive to the human mind because of our fallen, sinful nature.

Anyways, this sermon series has answered a lot of questions that I had about the elect and while I don't believe 100% in every one of MacArthur's interpretations, it has caused a lot of Biblical passages and doctrines to fall into place for me, so I feel that I have a greater understanding of the Bible and who GOD really is.

It also fills me with an incredible sense of humility and gratitude towards GOD. And it's helped me to root out some sins that I had started to overlook in my life because, if GOD chose me from before the foundation of the world, then why am I allowing myself to take such a casual approach towards sin?
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